Idaho AD: Staying in FBS conference is the ideal situation; Boise State AD says school is closely monitoring situation

By Brian Murphy
bmurphy@idahostatesman.com

Boise State AD issues statement on conference changes

The WAC, Boise State's future home for most non-football sports, has been decimated this week. The league has just two football-playing members (Idaho and New Mexico State) left and four others, including Boise State.

The Broncos are scheduled to leave the Mountain West next summer with its highly regarded football program moving to the Big East and most of its other homes moving to the WAC.

But the chaos with the WAC means Boise State may have to find another home for their non-football sports. The Broncos were unsuccessful at getting those programs into the Big West last year and the West Coast Conference seemed to have little interest.

Earlier on Friday, Mountain West Commissioner Craig Thompson said Boise State cannot house their other sports in the league without the football program, but left open the possibility of Boise State remaining an all-sports member of the Mountain West.

"We continue to closely monitor the changing landscape of college athletics as a result of the latest news on conference realignment. During this time of change, we remain committed to making the best long-term decisions for Boise State University," Athletic Director Mark Coyle said in a statement.

Idaho AD: Staying in FBS conference is the ideal situation

Idaho Athletic Director Rob Spear held a teleconference Friday afternoon to discuss the Vandals' future in light of the massive conference realignment and the exodus from the WAC.

Spear said the school would evaluate at least four scenarios and stressed that remaining in the Football Bowl Subdivision is a top priority.

The four scenarios that Idaho intends to explore:

1. An all-sport membership in an FBS conference

2. Football in an FBS conference with other sports in a different league

3. Football as an FBS independent with other sports in a league

4. Review the feasibility of FCS football

"The most ideal situation for the University of Idaho would be to be in an FBS conference for all of our sports," Spear said.

He said the Sun Belt is one possibility, but said there are other options in addition to the Sun Belt.

Spear said the university was not given an opportunity to make an in-person presentation to the Mountain West before the league decided to add Utah State and San Jose State.

"I wish I would have had the opportunity to meet face-to-face with Commissioner (Craig) Thompson and do a formal presentation," Spear said.

Idaho put together a presentation and sent it to the Mountain West, the league's presidents and athletic directors and, Idaho President Duane Nellis called the presidents of the Mountain West and Conference USA to state his case for inclusion.

Spear said the market size of Moscow and surrounding areas was the biggest factor in being bypassed by the Mountain West.

Spear said Idaho has not done an extensive review of the financial implications of moving to the FCS vs. remaining in the FBS.

"Whatever the final outcome, the University of Idaho is going to be fine," Spear said.

Other highlights:

• Spear said he has talked with nearly every conference commissioner in recent weeks. He said he has spoken with Big Sky Commissioner Doug Fullerton, but that those conversations were more philosophical in nature.

• Spear did not give a timeline for a decision, but said "there's a lot of discussion that has to happen between now and the first of July."

• Spear said it was imperative for the Vandals to improve their facilities. "There should have been a rush 20 years ago," he said.

He said the president has many focuses on campus, including the construction of a new science building. But Spear said it was up to him as athletic director and "it is up to the University of Idaho to figure out how to get these facilities prioritized and done."

• He said repeatedly that a fissure in the FBS was coming with the five big conferences (SEC, ACC, Pac-12, Big 10 and Big 12) likely to create a new structure. Spear said he wants Idaho to be in the second tier when that happens.

Mountain West adds Utah State, San Jose State; Says Boise State must bring all sports if it wants back in league

The Mountain West officially added Utah State and San Jose State to its remodeled league Friday morning, taking two more schools away from the shrinking WAC. The schools will join the Mountain West on July 1, 2013.

On that date — the same day Boise State will join the Big East in football and, for now, the WAC in most other sports — the Mountain West will have 10 football-playing members and nine all-sport members.

"As we have developed the strategy for the future of the Conference, the long-standing rivalries with our current members and the fit within our geographic footprint made these two institutions the optimal choices to strengthen our membership and position ourselves for the next steps," Mountain West Commissioner Craig Thompson said.

In addition to the Mountain West's moves, Conference USA also officially introduced five new members, including Louisiana Tech and Texas-San Antonio from the WAC. North Texas, Florida International and Charlotte are also joining Conference USA.

The Mountain West and Conference USA continue to work on a partnership, Thompson said during his conference call. He said the announcements were strategically timed.

Thompson hit on several other issues:

• Boise State cannot house its non-football programs in the Mountain West without its football team playing in the league, Thompson said. That has been the league's position all along and is in the conference's bylaws. "Football allows you to play your Olympic sports in the Mountain West," Thompson said.

• Thompson said that Boise State Athletic Director Mark Coyle was at the league's meetings this week in Arizona. He said there is room for Boise State and San Diego State if the teams decide not to move their football programs to the Big East. "I think there is room at the table. I don't want to get into a hypothetical answer. Yes, 10 members is two short of a conference championship game (in football)," Thompson said.

• Utah State and San Jose State will pay an entrance fee to the Mountain West, but Thompson would not disclose it.

• Thompson said Idaho and New Mexico State — the lone football-playing members left in the WAC — made presentations to the Mountain West for inclusion. Thompson said "their presidents and ADs did a tremendous job." He said there was "considerable consideration" for the schools. New Mexico "pushed hard for New Mexico State's inclusion." Instead, the league chose to add Utah State and San Jose State.

Idaho Athletic Director Rob Spear will hold a teleconference at 4 p.m. Mountain to discuss conference realignment.

• The league is working on an agreement that would allow another "15-to-20" football games to be broadcast by a regional network. He said schools would then be able to sell local broadcasts for remaining games.

Big Sky: 'Idaho would be very welcome'

The Big Sky Conference is "basically sitting and watching and seeing where all the chips fall," Associate Commissioner Ron Loghry said.

The Big Sky has 13 football-playing schools and 11 all-sport members. UC Davis and Cal Poly are football-only members.

The league would like to add another all-sport members so it could divide into divisions for non-football sports and cut down on travel costs.

"Part of the grand scheme is to get to 12 and possibly explore divisions and save money on travel. It's there. The presidents and the commissioner are being very deliberate," Loghry said.

South Dakota State was slated to be the 12/14th member, but opted not to join the league.

"They didn't want to make any rash decisions by trying to find a 12th member," he said.

Idaho, however, would be an ideal candidate. The Vandals are former Big Sky members (1965-1996) and would be a terrific fit geographically for the Big Sky.

"It's no secret. It goes without saying that the University of Idaho would be very welcome," Loghry said.

Winners and losers

Chris Murray of the Reno (Nev.) Gazette-Journal has posted his Western conference realignment winners and losers. Do you agree with him that Boise State's non-football sports are losers in the exchange?

Release from Mountain West on the additions of San Jose State, Utah State

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - The Mountain West announced today that San José State University and Utah State University have accepted invitations to join the Conference, effective with the 2013-14 academic year. The addition of San José State University and Utah State University on July 1, 2013 will bring the full-time membership of the Mountain West to nine institutions and 10 football-playing members.

"We are pleased to announce the addition of San José State University and Utah State University to the ranks of the Mountain West," said Mountain West Commissioner Craig Thompson. "As we have developed the strategy for the future of the Conference, the long-standing rivalries with our current members and the fit within our geographic footprint made these two institutions the optimal choices to strengthen our membership and position ourselves for the next steps."

Those next steps include continued consideration of a future association between Conference USA and the Mountain West. The two leagues have synchronized their new membership decisions and are still determining what form the alliance will take.

"Joining the Mountain West in 2013 is an exciting opportunity for San José State University's student-athletes, coaches and our many supporters," SJSU President Mohammad Qayoumi said. "I want to thank everyone who worked hard to make this happen. The Mountain West and San José State are a great match. We are not joining this conference to simply compete. We are joining to win, and to build upon our current record of success reflecting San José State's role as a leader in the classroom, research and athletics."

"This is an exciting moment for Utah State University as the decision renews historic rivalries and places us in a conference that is a model of athletic and academic success," said USU president Stan Albrecht. "We are proud to join with this group of high-quality institutions as we continue our very positive upward trajectory. This is a great day for Utah State athletics and for the university as a whole."

"On behalf of the Mountain West Board of Directors, I would like to welcome these two wonderful institutions to the Conference," said UNLV President and MW Board Chair Neal Smatresk. "They clearly enhance the rivalries within the league and strengthen the fabric of our membership. We look forward to having San Jose State and Utah State join us for what promises to be a successful future."

About San José State
Founded in 1857 and with an enrollment of 28,002, San José State is the oldest public institution of higher education in the state of California. Ranked in the top 15 master's-level public universities in the West by U.S. News & World Report, SJSU is also the number one supplier of education, engineering, computer science and business graduates to Silicon Valley, the world's high tech capital. San José provides the sixth-largest media market in the country and is conveniently located midway between San Francisco and Monterey/Carmel.

San José State competes in 16 varsity sports and will be adding a 17th with women's outdoor track in 2013-14. The Spartans have won 10 NCAA Division I team championships and 50 NCAA Division I individual titles. San José State has a winning record in its postseason football history including its most recent bowl victory in the 2006 New Mexico Bowl. Thus far in 2011-12, the Spartans won conference championships in women's swimming and diving, women's golf and men's golf. San Jose State athletes have won seven gold, six silver and six bronze medals in Olympic Games competition.

About Utah State
Utah State, a university with an enrollment of 25,767, was founded in 1888 in Logan, Utah. Identified as the No. 1 public university in the West, and among the top five nationally, on Forbes' list of America's Best College Buys, USU's undergraduate research program is the second oldest in the country after MIT.

Utah State sponsors 16 varsity sports. The Aggies men's basketball program is one of just five schools nationally to record 13 straight 21 wins seasons and has advanced to 13 straight postseasons (8-NCAA, 4-NIT, 1-CIT), which is tied for the 11th-longest active streak in the nation. USU's women's basketball team has advanced to postseason play in each of the last two years, participating in the Women's National Invitational Tournament, while its women's soccer program advanced to its first-ever NCAA Tournament in 2012. Utah State's football team finished the 2012 season in second place in the WAC and played in its first bowl game since 1997 in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl.

About the Mountain West
The Mountain West was founded with eight members in 1998. Five of the original members remain - The United States Air Force Academy, Colorado State University, the University of New Mexico, UNLV and the University of Wyoming. Fresno State and the University of Nevada will join the Mountain West effective July 1, 2012. Also on that date, the University of Hawai`i will become a football-only member of the Conference.

1336184080 Idaho AD: Staying in FBS conference is the ideal situation; Boise State AD says school is closely monitoring situation Idaho Statesman Copyright 2014 Idaho Statesman . All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Yes

BSU's Olympic sports are taking it in the shorts. There is no subtle way to put it. Even before the WAC disintegrated, the move was a big step back.

I don't think BSU will ever play a game in the WAC or the Big Sky. No matter, it is still a step back. What the MWC isn't in football, it made up for in Olympic Sports. It is going to be a great basketball conference for sure.

The only positive, other than money, is BSU has a chance to be at the big boy table in 2014. The remaining C_USA, MWC, Sunbelt, MAC teams aren't going to be there. There is more consolidation ahead.

The biggest losers here are Idaho and New Mexico State. They lose everything no matter where they end up. That is too bad.

Home Sweet Home

--"The biggest losers here are Idaho and New Mexico State."

Luckily they're not strangers to losing, so they'll feel right at home.

You left out one.

Boise State's nonfootball sports are the biggest losers. Not even the Big Sky wants them. If Idaho ended up in the Big Sky would they be losers? I think the Sun Belt would put them in a bigger losers bracket.

Best Post of the Day

Wow...you hit the nail on the head with the hammer. Best and most truthful post of the day! Good Job!

Hey Doobie

You need to say that you are check-mate...the truth has been spoken...

I feel bad for Idaho fans.

An old Roman saying......"We must expand or we will perish"

Idaho should have considered this the MOMENT they thought about jumping up to 1-A football. They wanted to be members of a nice country club (FBS/1-A), but on a shoestring budget. They have no one to blame but themselves.....

Idaho has ONE chance to survive at the FBS level. They need to try and get all there olympic sports into the Big SKy and TRY to join the MAC. They have 13 teams and need a school in the western division to balance out at 14. I realize they have nothing in common with those schools geographiclaly, but neither does Boise State with the Big East.

Eventually, Idaho needs to MAN UP and build a REAL football stadium (outdoors with 30k+ seats). They should have done this in 1996, etc. They will NEVER survive as an independent. They'll end up play 8-9 games on the road with only 3 or so home games against an Easten Washington, etc and maybe a couple of home and home series games against a Wyoming and maybe a school like Akron or New Mexico State. You can't survive that way.......

As for NMSU, I think maybe they have a shot of joining the SUn Belt as a travel partner for Texas State. Plus, NMSU does have a traditionally good basketball team.

Idaho......time to grow or die, man.

Non-Football Sports

Yes, I'd agree BSU's non-football sports are, so far, a loser in all of this. How does a coach like Rice go from telling a recruit he'll be competing against the likes of San Diego State, UNLV, and New Mexico to telling him he'll be competing against the likes of Utah State, Idaho, and Texas State to NOW telling him that we don't really know where or who we'll be playing against?

I had heard the Big Sky told BSU before that they didn't have a lot of interest in adding the Broncos, because BSU's budget is considerably higher than the Big Sky schools and they have the benefit of added exposure with the football program. Any truth to that?

Who knows? Maybe Idaho will be able to negotiate a home-and-home football series with BSU now -- they'll go indy and attempt to keep the WAC open as a non-football league for BSU, but they'll need football games in return. Wouldn't that be ironic?

Ha ha good one

There will be no Home and Home series dude. It's over.

Thank God!

We don't need those cupcake games!

LOL!

Your AD keeps all cupcakes on speed dial!

Who's your AD?

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"foreignoregonian" is not anonymous

It is my identity and my philosophy

Would you prefer everyone to be called 'Poster'?

Never say never chump.

Never say never chump.

chump?

I didn't say "never". Keep it classy as always slackwater.

Wow Chump..."its over" means

Wow Chump..."its over" means what? Someday? In the future? Done? Semantics!

Done for the foreseeable future

It's too bad you loser vandals don't put this much energy and passion into your own team. Half these posts are jilted vandals offering worthless opinions about not Idaho, but Boise State.

What's that chump...can't

What's that chump...can't defend your statement? I guess it is best that you quickly move on to another subject and keep it classy?

I answered it..

Done for the foreseeable future. Comprehension isn't your thing? It's OK, its amusing watching you cry these last few years.

Articulation is not your

Articulation is not your thing, is it chump? I am glad you are amused at whatever you think is amusing. Me, I laughing all the way to the "Taco Center" to see Bozo State play the Sisters of the Poor. Go Sisters of the Poor!

Tissue?

"Me, I laughing..."

Thanks for the laugh, dude.

Any time...chump!

Any time...chump!

harley the coward returns

for another lame set of posts. your sixth grade education is impressive.

JL

This "SportsISfun1960"...I swear...its okay for you to admit you were an abused kid. When I read your posts...I'm either amuzed or feeling sorry for you. I remember feeling so BAD for you when the BrontzMan missed the FG in Nevada. For time...I thought you were humbled by the experience...but I can see that you are definately what VMDL would call a mongoose...goodness...you never quit drinking blue and orange koolaide.

HAHAHA!

§

.

Are you still bhurt crying to Murph?

My life is way too good to feel sorry for me. You're wasting your time. Again.

NOPE!

It's off my chest and I can laugh abouot it!

HAHA!

You all sound bhurt and whiny in this useless thread.

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"foreignoregonian" is not anonymous

It is my identity and my philosophy

Would you prefer everyone to be called 'Poster'?

Basketball

I can see a few of the Olympic sports, like tennis, going the same route as wrestling and finding a home in the PAC12, but I think that the basketball program is going to be hit especially hard. The potential was there for it to grow into a substantially more competitive operation, but I don't see that continuing, no matter what conference they end up with.

The Big Sky is not going to take the non-football sports. I have no idea where they're going to end up, but I'm losing hope that it will be in a "good" conference. I wonder how long it will be before Coach Rice decides that it's time to move on?

You've got to remember

though times get tough on occasion, that isn't exactly any reason to give up a $400k gig, is it? There will be a solution in time.

No Pac-12

Most members in the Pac-12 offer tennis. Only 3 or 4 offer Wrestling.

The Pac-12 does not need you, like the MWC.

"Olympic" sports

Let's face it, the only sport that matters at BSU is football. Why don't they just drop every other sport and do what's sacred to them, play football on the east coast, far from their loyal fans.

Same could be said for Idaho

Ever since Big West football went away, the vandals have known they are last in line, but they kept pushing for D1A football. The only conference that wants them is the Big Sky and it is a perfect fit. That's not a slam at all. I actually like the Big Sky a lot. UI's been chasing fools gold for along time. This is the third time a conference has basically walked away from them (PCC, Big West, WAC).

At the very worst, BSU is still better off than UI.

That said, minus SJSU, I wouldn't mind staying in the Mountain West. I am not a fan of the Big East move, but I know why they are doing it. I dare say, UI would jump at the chance to be in our situation (both now and in 2013), but that just isn't going to happen.

Title IX etc. THAT'S WHY

----------

"foreignoregonian" is not anonymous

It is my identity and my philosophy

Would you prefer everyone to be called 'Poster'?

As long as Football thrives,

As long as Football thrives, the AD isn't going to really give any care to what happens to the other sports. They will just throw them in the first conference that will take them.

Ironic...

That BSU leaving the WAC would lead to the eventual implosion that would eventually hurt BSU so much and make it incredibly difficult. I hope every day that BSU can somehow boost numbers in every field and convince the PAC12 for an invite. That is the only solution to all this unsettled conference stuff. BSU is stuck between a rock and a hard place. Good enough to be included in PAC12 conference athletics but not prestigious enough for the academics and unfortunately not a large enough TV market and following.

I know its wishful thinking but BSU should have waited in the WAC till UTAH made the announcement to leave and BYU expressed desires to get out and TCU bolting. At that time hopefully the Mtn West would have been crumbling and BSU could have basically picked who they wanted from both conferences to join them with the idea of starting a new conference that included a better TV deal with ESPN. BSU should have taken the upper hand much like BYU did in helping create the Mtn West. BSU should have been working behind the scenes with BYU in making it happen.

I agree

About the approach BSU should have taken. A good mid-major conference in the west is a better fit for BSU than an equivalent mid-major conference based on the east coast.

The Pac 12 isn't going to happen. I don't see them doing any additional expansions unless it involves the power type of programs they've been flirting with in recent years. BSU simply isn't a good fit.

I know it isn't going to happen...

oh but it is a good fit. The football team could run with anybody in that conference and BSU basketball isn't that far off, especially with how that conference played this past season, and the other sports could compete as well. The "power houses" they have been flirting with weren't really good fits either. Non of them had anything in common except $ on the mind. Too bad BSU doesn't add enough $ to the conference to make up for the share they would hope to get out of it. The only problem with sticking around with the WAC would have been the continued and even more drawn down spirits of the fans tired of watching SJSU, NMSU, and Utah St.s get pummeled every year.

Not that people here will ever get it...

...because they only think BSU's most recent decade of football matters.

But "new money" BSU is a bad fit in a "blue blood" conference like the Pac-12. They don't want BSU. They don't need BSU. They will never invite BSU.

people only think BSU's most recent decade of football matters?

really?

You couldn't be more wrong. Sure, the last decade has been great for BSU, however, most Bronco fans see more than that. We see the bigger picture of success.

We see a 377-145-3 All-Time record. That's a winning percentage of (.721) which put's BSU at #3 on the NCAA All-Time Winning Percentage list, trailing only Michigan #1, and Notre Dame #2.

http://www.cfbdatawarehouse.com/data/misc/div_ia_winning_pct.php

All-Time Winning Percentage for PAC12 teams are as follows, and feel free to compare them to BSU's.

#3 BSU
#9 USC
#19 Washington
#22 Arizona St
#27 Colorado
#30 Utah
#37 UCLA
#45 Arizona
#46 Stanford
#50 Cal
#57 Oregon
#88 Washington St
#98 Oregon St
AND
#107 Idaho

The Pac-12 may never invite BSU, but if they did, BSU and USC would be the only two Pac 12 programs to have a top 10 all-time winning percentage. The SEC only has one team in the top 10 (Bama)

Most BSU "fans" jumped on

Most BSU "fans" jumped on the wagon in 2007 though... This is the only Decade they know.

Bogus Boy

So you have surveyed ever BSU fans. More than likely it is just your delusional mind inventing bogus facts again.

107

Must have been a very and I mean very good year for the vandul to make to 107.

Really

Your comparing Pac 10 winning % to BSU and using Division II and IAA games that BSU played. Only the lsat 10 years could BSU really compete with the PAC 10 teams but if they did they wouldn't have the same winning percentage. Get real. BSU football and Coach Pete have done something special but your ability to compare is crazy.

wrong again...

Yes, at the end of my post, I did show how the Pac12 all-time winning percentage stacks up to BSU, however, the point of my post was to show that regardless of what division or conference the Broncos have been in, they've been highly successful. Do you realize that the Bronco's have only experienced a total of 5 losing seasons in it's history?
Anyway, yes, Petersen has done a great job for BSU, and so have other coaches who have been a part of the Broncos winning tradition. Were you aware that one would have to combine Dirk Koetter's 26-10 record, Dan Hawkins 53-11 record, and Chris Petersen's 73-6 record (157 wins - 27 losses) just to get Lyle Smith's coaching record of 156-26-6? But guess what? Lyle Smith's 156-26-6 record isn't even used in the all-time ncaa winning percentage data because JC wins don't count. Only wins after BJC became Boise State College are counted.

Lastly, If you ONLY look at the last 10 years of FBS football, guess what? BSU would be not only be #1 in winning percentage instead of #3. Anyway, over that time span ( 10 yrs) BSU is 9-4 vs the Pac 12!

Congratulations! You have...

...missed the point entirely, and made mine better than I could have made it myself.

BSU has NOTHING to offer the Pac-12 that the Pac-12 wants, needs, or values. Your fine track record in football, most of it spent in the ranks of junior college and 1-AA competition, as much as it means to you, means nothing to them.

Those of you Bronco fans who are still laboring under this delusion need to wake up. The Pac-12 does not need you. More importantly, they do not WANT you.

you sound

nasty and enibriated.

Nobody submitted audio files?

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"foreignoregonian" is not anonymous

It is my identity and my philosophy

Would you prefer everyone to be called 'Poster'?

yo sandbagsix

I didn't miss your point at all. Hey, did you, or did you not, post the following comment?

"people here will ever get it......because they only think BSU's most recent decade of football matters."

Well sandbag, In my post above, I showed you that the last 10 years is just a drop in he bucket for BSU when it comes to their success. I do like that you want to think that they've only been good for 10 years though. That's funny.

BTW - I never suggested that BSU had something to offer the PAC 12 or that the PAC 12 needed or wanted BSU. I simply posted a link that showed that BSU is sitting at #3 on the ncaa all-time winning percentage list.

Mis-leading Stats

And I can take that same list and sort by number of games played and BSU drops like a rock down to 114.

Relatively speaking BSU is a new kid in the game, and its trying to force its way to the adult table. Does BSU have a good football program? Absolutely. Does it match up with the older colleges, some of which have been around since before Idaho was even a state? I'm not sure.

In my opinion, BSU needs to drop its football arrogance and start playing the game that exists off the field. A local in state rivalry with the Vandals to the outside world might seem natural, but BSU seems to think they are too good for that. A rivalry with BYU or Utah might have been another thing to think about, but BSU blew that as well, shunning BYU and the WAC saying they were not good enough for BSU and failing to consider building something with Utah. Look at what the older teams are doing, Michigan/Michigan State, USC/UCLA, Florida/Florida St, etc.

Also off the field, Kustra might want to think about what needs to be done academically to boost BSU's presence. Key partnerships academically, key research grants, building endowments etc. that plays in this this game as well. If BSU does't want the rest of the world to think of them as Boise Community College the image has to change all around.

Winning in the last 10 years is a great thing. Being able to stay at the level academically and athletically for 100 years or more requires something that BSU just doesn't have yet.

Spudboy

Are you confused?

How did BSU blow/shun BYU and Utah?

"Kustra might want to think about what needs t be done academically to boost BSU's presence?"

Really? Have you been to the Bronco campus lately?

winning percentages aren't misleading ..they're a matter of fact

If you'd like, I can show you how to do the math ;-)

As far as Off the Field is concerned, did you know that BSU is set to have it's largest commencement celebration in school history, or that BSU set new records for doctoral, bachelor and master’s degrees awarded this year? I could go on and on showing you more of BSU's record breaking academic year, but you don't care about anything factual do you?