Great job, VAgolf. Here is the part that intrigues me the most:
Virginia Sports Report wrote:Liberty is joining as a full-time member and we envision a long-term partnership. This could possibly lead to scheduling arrangements in football.
VSR: Ian McCaw (Liberty Athletic Director) mentioned that there were discussions one year ago but they never materialized. What changed between then and a month ago?
Conviction that Liberty would be a long-term member and secured scheduling of football games
As I look at the A-Sun the only teams that field football teams are Kennesaw State, North Alabama, Jacksonville & Stetson. The Owls are the only one of the three that offer 60+ scholarships (UNA is headed that direction). So theoretically KSU is the only school we can play and still qualify the victory for bowl eligibility based on the following NCAA rule:
NCAA.org wrote:Each year, a FBS institution may count one contest against a FCS opponent to satisfy the
football scheduling requirement, provided the Football Championship Subdivision
opponent has averaged 90 percent of the permissible maximum number of grant-in-aids per
year in the FCS over a rolling two-year period. [Bylaws 18.104.22.168 and 22.214.171.124.1]
This means that Big South football affiliates Kennesaw State and North Alabama are essentially the only schools who could benefit from a pledge of football games by having 60+ scholarships. Of course this could signal that there are plans for Jax and/or Stetson to upgrade to full FCS programs. Both Florida schools are currently Pioneer members. It just seems odd that the commish of a non-football conference would consider this to be a sticking point on league membership for us. Perhaps these football schools were the swing votes or the ones who pushed hard for our admission based on their own football ambitions.