Contact Us

Can UTEP Afford To Leave C-USA For The Mountain West?

UTEP LogoThere is a lot of talk that UTEP could be poised to join the Mountain West Conference in the coming weeks.’s Andy Katz reported that UTEP is very interested in leaving C-USA for the MWC. There is no denying that C-USA is a shell of the conference it once was when the Miners joined in 2005. In the next two years, SMU, Houston, East Carolina, Central Florida, Memphis, and Tulane will be leaving C-USA and moving to the Big East Conference. The replacement schools include North Texas, UT San Antonio, Florida International, Louisiana Tech, Middle Tennessee State, Florida Atlantic, UNC Charlotte, and Old Dominion. Miner fans are not exactly thrilled with the conference’s new look.

The big question is how much would it cost UTEP to leave C-USA and join the MWC? That dollar figure depends on the amount of television revenue that would be lost should the Miners depart. For example, if C-USA would lose $6.5 million in television revenue by UTEP leaving the conference, the school would need to pay that dollar amount. Then, they would also need to pay an entree fee in order to get into the MWC, although the conference could waive that fee.

In order for UTEP to change leagues, the MWC would have to invite them to join. Almost 15 years ago, the Miners were left out when eight teams from the WAC broke apart to form the Mountain West. In recent years, the MWC has taken a major hit when they lost TCU, BYU, and Utah. Then, San Diego State and Boise State announced they were leaving to join the Big East. Last week, Boise State changed their mind (thanks to a larger television split) and elected to stay in the Mountain West. San Diego State is also reconsidering their decision and might do the same. That could have a major impact on whether or not the Miners get the invite to move west. If the Aztecs return to the MWC, the league would be a 12-team football conference and could play a championship game. If San Diego State stays in the Big East, then UTEP could emerge as the favorite for the 12th team.

One big question remains: can UTEP afford to pay the exit and possible entry fee to change conferences? It is doubtful that the university has the $6 – $7 million to make the move, but they could ask their biggest donors to help with covering the fee. Also, UTEP could see a benefit from conference-shared revenues, increased attendance at home games, and reduced travel expenditures to justify the switch to the MWC.

Recommended For You

Best of the Web

Leave a Comment

It appears that you already have an account created within our VIP network of sites on . To keep your personal information safe, we need to verify that it's really you. To activate your account, please confirm your password. When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites.

Forgot your password?

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

It appears that you already have an account on this site associated with . To connect your existing account just click on the account activation button below. You will maintain your existing VIP profile. After you do this, you will be able to always log in to using your original account information.

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

Please fill out the information below to help us provide you a better experience.

(Forgot your password?)

Not a member? Sign up here

Sign up for CLUBHOUSE quickly by connecting your Facebook account. It's just as secure and no password to remember!

Sign up to have exclusive CLUBHOUSE contests, events, coupons, presales, and much more delivered to you for FREE.