Boise State to remain in Mountain West, not join Big East

By Brian Murphy

Boise State will remain in the Mountain West in all sports and will not join the Big East, the school and league announced Monday afternoon.

Boise State was scheduled to join the Big East in football and the Big West in most other sports in July, but instead the Broncos will stay in the Mountain West. Boise State joined the league in 2011.

As part of its agreement to remain in the Mountain West, the rights to Boise State's home football games will be sold apart from the Mountain West's television contract.

The league announced a restructured television agreement with CBS Sports earlier this month. As part of the agreement, the league can sell rights packages — including those to Boise State home games — to other networks.

Boise State and other football teams in the Mountain West who appear on national television (ESPN, ESPN2, ABC, NBC, CBS and Fox) will be paid a bonus of $300,000 per game, with an additional $200,000 for a Saturday game, according to Boise State.

"I have had the utmost trust that the university would make the right decision in what is best for Bronco football and all our sports at Boise State," football coach Chris Petersen said. "This innovative proposal to get football the maximum exposure on national television will be a tremendous boost to our program as we continue to grow the Bronco brand."

The Mountain West is one of the toughest basketball conferences in the country and Boise State's men's basketball team will remain there.

"We are excited to remain in the Mountain West Conference, as it has proven to be one of the top basketball leagues in the country. We have to continue to grow this program in every aspect to compete in this league, and our administration, our coaches and our players understand that," men's basketball coach Leon Rice said.

Boise State must pay the Big East a $5 million exit fee, but it can be negotiated to a lesser amount, Boise State said. The Mountain West will help pay whatever exit fee the Broncos owe. Boise State will not owe an exit fee or an entrance fee to the Mountain West.

Boise State's decision leaves the Mountain West with 11 football-playing members in 2013. (Hawaii plays football in the Mountain West, but nothing else). Mountain West Commissioner Craig Thompson said he has spoken with "three to five" schools in the last 24 hours, including San Diego State, which was set to move with Boise State to the Big East.

Thompson said he has had informal conversations with BYU about rejoining the Mountain West.

Boise State will be allowed to wear all-blue uniforms at home as part of the deal.

Boise State President Bob Kustra issued a lengthy statement on the decision:

"I am pleased to announce that Boise State will remain in the Mountain West Conference (MWC) for all MWC sports, including football. In doing so, we thank the members and Commissioners of the Big East Conference and the Big West Conference for their acceptance of us as members. In making this decision, we considered revenue, stability, team and fan travel, and the advantage for Boise State athletics in general of having most sports in one conference.

"This has been an odyssey for Boise State, with all the unexpected turns and changes that term suggests. The responsibility for conference membership lies at the desk of the university president and it’s one I have taken very seriously. The benefits of geographic footprint, revenue, and national exposure have to be balanced, one to the other. In this day of constantly shifting memberships, the value of those benefits also shifts, often into the unknown.

"The remaining teams in the Big East and those about to join the Big East are fine programs with leadership that I have come to know and value greatly. But I also appreciate the membership of the Mountain West Conference — many of whom are considered our traditional rivals — and look forward to our continued relationship.

"Thanks to the success of Coach Petersen and his staff, Boise State football is a unique program with a value in media and ticket sales attractive to a number of conferences and bowl venues. Mountain West Commissioner Craig Thompson and the presidents on his board recognized that and created for the very first time — with CBS Sports’ agreement — an innovative and unique offer for Boise State that exceeds prior offers and carves our home football games from the conference media package and allows their sale on the market, with Boise State and the MWC as partners in the sale.

"In return, Boise State and other teams in the conference who may appear on national TV (ESPN, ESPN2, NBC, CBS, Fox) will be paid a bonus of $300,000 per game, with an additional $200,000 for a Saturday game. This innovative approach accesses for both the institutions and the conference the TV value brought to the conference by its teams, while treating all of its members, to the extent possible, in an equitable and fair way.

"Finally, the MWC is implementing a system whereby any member whose football performance results in payments from the BCS to the conference will share directly in those revenues on a 50/50 basis with the conference, thus enjoying a direct reward for their team's success.

"It is my fondest hope that everyone in the Boise State family will be pleased with this arrangement and appreciate the team effort that was required to get us here. Special thanks to Vice President and Legal Counsel Kevin Satterlee, who worked tirelessly to achieve this result, and to Athletic Director Mark Coyle for his leadership throughout this process."

There goes stadium expansion

Get ready for some small time football.......


Nice response Mr. Cupcake State know it all! Guess you were wrong. You are right on this - Cupcake State is small time - always will be.

I don't know about that.

With the unique ability to retain television rights to its home games, BSU likely will enjoy more revenue than they would have received from the depleted Big East television deal.

Agree--TV rights seems like a winner

BSU has earned a fair amount of national television star power, and seems to have parlayed that into a lucrative provision for staying in the Mtn West. The *threatened* move to the Big East provided some interesting leverage.

I'm guessing that ESPN

may help set up a non-conference home game for the Broncos so they can broadcast it. The Tenn-Martin game has always felt like a place holder instead of a real game. Northern Illinois is open on the week of 9/7/13 and might make an attractive match up of two BCS busters on a Friday night game for ESPN. Besides NIU was already planning to travel to Idaho the following week, so buying out of a less compettive game makes sense.

The expansion will come... in time.

Joke Teams

Tenn-Martin.......this never stops.....LOL

Flip Foes

Give the Tenn-Martin game to Idaho and have Northern Illinois come play the Broncos. ESPN gets a game for national broadcast and the Vandals only lose by 28 points as that program begins to improve.

are you kidding

Have you looked at the membership of the Big East. The only current members who will be left in the conference are UConn, Cincinnati and USF. At least two of those have announced that they want to leave the conference. In the end, the only schools left will be Conference USA leftovers and MW leftovers. So we would have ended up going to a non-BCS conference that has similar teams and worse travel. Instead, they decided to stay where they are for more money. Makes sense to me.

Just for giggles

Did you know that Temple had better attendance than 7 of the 10 MWC teams.....

Yup, instead of playing in front of 50,000 at Temple, we get to play in front of 10,000 in San Jose.....

Re: playing Temple

OH YEA,it had the makings of a TREMENDOUS rivalry. Alas, now doomed.


just shows your failed logic BS43. In your world Temple is big-time because they have good attendance.

Then reality sets in and everyone realizes that we could absolutely care less about Temple.

Agreed--No need to get on that ship now

Originally, the Big East offered some fine teams to play and the holy grail of Auto Qualifier for BCS. But after 2013, The New Improved BCS will have tossed the B.East into the pond with the rest of us Little Sisters. Very little reason to go there now, and the fine teams that were there are also voting with their feet.

small time football

wow BS43, according to your logic, BSU will never get to a BCS bowl in a conference like this. No way we'll ever get national attention, on say, the cover of Sports Illustrated. No way we'll ever get ranked, especially consistently. No way ESPN and other national networks would want to televise us. No way that our bowl games would be discussed as the best of all time.

Nope - your logic says - that the MWC will make all of that impossible.

its really easy to prove you wrong when you've already been proven wrong

Frog Stadium RENAMED!


Blue on Blue?

I hope the Broncos made it clear they will wear what they want and the fans will be welcome to bring the noise again, even artificially! The worst part of the MWC is their sissy, junior high rules.

The Big East...

The Big East was barely a major football conference before all the decent teams left. What it is today, switching to the BE was a lateral move at best. The BE is a sinking ship, no reason to jump on now. I support the decision to stay in the MWC. I hope we can wear whatever unis we want and the TV deal seems like a step up. Not Great, but better than before.

The players could wear street clothes...

And still win every home game

Next years home conference schedule

Record at Bronco stadium and average score:

Wyoming (0 - 3) 31-15
Hawaii (0 - 5) 47-16
Nevada (1 - 7) 49-26
New Mexico (0 - 2) 33-5

Southern Mississippi becomes our biggest home game next year.......

Season tickets anyone?

Looks like a...

typical Cupcake State schedule. Boo hoo nobody will play us because they are scared.


the hate? Apparently you are scared...

Wow that is pathetic...

Disappointing after the tease of some good games next year. I will have no problem hanging out at a pub somewhere watching those games on TV. The best things about those games is the commentary and replays not in the stadium. I am hoping the TV deal somehow helps the finances to bring in some big time non-conference games down the road. We could bring in two great teams a year right now and no matter how the competition on the field is, we would be growing our program and guaranteeing our long-term post Peterson growth. The time is now.

Happy for basketball and other programs, was getting bummed about moving out of the MWC for basketball. Hopefully we can bring back SDSU, BYU, and add a couple other programs to keep it interesting.

Thanks for stating a thoughtful opinion

But who's "Peterson"?

Thanks J....

feel free to correct all the spelling and grammar you wish. Hopefully this clears it up for ya. Chris Petersen or read up hear for more clarification I tried to find his full name for ya, but you'll have to educate me on that too.

It Will Improve

First, I'm very, very happy for coach Rice and our basketball program. I will not be surprised to see Houston, Southern Methodist, Brigham Young and San Diego State in the Mountain West soon.

AQ Status

I think I read somewhere that if the Big East lost AQ status in football, which they technically do, the exit fee drops to $1 million.

Perhaps one of the new additions

San Jose State or Utah St will replace one of the less attractive home games. I agree that the conference home schedule doesn't look very appealing in 2013, but being in the Big East in 2014 looks even worse.

Boise State

is a combined 20-2 against USU and SJSU..........

2014 Big East would have been a huge upgrade....

Doesn't matter now...

Not a fair comparison, B

A lot of teams have bad records against us on The Blue. Even Oregon is 0-1 at Bronco Stadium.

As for Nevada, you had to go WAY back to 1998 for the last time they won on The Blue.

OK, how about overall records

Pick a rivalry.....

AFA - 1 -0
FSU - 11 -2
HA - 10 -3
NV - 12 -4
SJS - 10 -0
USU - 10 -2
WY - 7 -0
NM - 4 -0
UNLV- 2 -0

I'm not disagreeing

It's just that Boise State dominates most of the teams they play. It'd be hard to find a team we didn't dominate, although SDSU is the current challenger.

I think it is more due to us being THAT good, rather than our opponents being that bad.

BTW: I'm totally looking forward to the 2013 MLB season.

MWC Exit Fee

Does BSU get a refund? Maybe put it as a down payment toward this $10 mil exit fee to a conference that BSU never played a single game in...

I think it's only $5M

until July, when it would have gone up to $10M

Could be wrong.....

We ought to tell 'em to pound sand.

They won't need it when they don't exist any longer. I can't believe they'd have the balls to still demand it.

Its $5M

Its $5M but it should be less since part of the contract had a clause stating that if the potential TV revenues dropped so would the exit fee.

Its $5M

Exactly, the exit fee is $5M less the discount for the much depleted Big East television deal, less the amount that the Mtn. West has agreed to help pay.

The Exit fee will be minimal.

It's hard to

beat the Troll on breaking news. Looks like after everything was said and done we finally came to our senses on "geographic footprint", and did the right thing for the fans. And, you can bet the team will be wearing all blue again.

awesome time to be a bronco fan

Multiple covers on Sports Illustrated, nation-wide attention, top-20 rankings, 2 BCS Bowl wins...

and now an innovative TV deal, keeping our geographic rivalries, and stability.

It's an awesome time to be a bronco fan!!!!

I wonder...

If Ceesey still wants to FIRE KUSTRA!!???!!

Lesser of all available evils

Moving up to a major conference is not happening anytime real soon. In our lifetimes? Perhaps, but the fact that BSU is unranked in the middle of all of these talks, and not in the top 5, is a much bigger deal than anyone is mentioning publicly. Why would the Big/Pac 12 invite a school that may wind up being the next Tulane or Marshall? I think folks are waiting to see what happens after the Kellen Moore era. If the program reverts back to the days of Dinwiddie and Zabransky, then forget about ever moving up a level.

The Big East is in flames. Prior to the Catholic schools leaving, I was in favor of continuing the move to that conference, but now the graffiti is on the wall- the BE's days are numbered. Losing BSU may have been the death blow.

The MWC, at least, is a known entity and it seems to be more stable than the Big East. The quirks in the conference agreement will allow BSU to tap into more $$ than its conference peers, much like Texas in the Big 12. So that's great for the Broncos but it won't win them any new friends in the MWC.


Wasn't he the QB that won some BCS game against Oklahoma?

What's wrong with the days

What's wrong with the days of Dinwiddie and Zabransky? I'm pretty sure we finished most of those years ranked in the top 25 with the 06 Fiesta Bowl as the cherry on top. If we "revert" back to those days, I'd be very happy. Maybe you were being sarcastic???

You're an obvious...

idiotic troll

Moving up

Instead of concentrating on conference jumping as a way to "move up" to a major conference, how about we do it the old fashioned way, hard work. With this innovative TV deal for BSU, don't you think a similar deal for BYU might bring them back to the MWC?

A united MWC that works to improve the competitive level of all its members in both FB & BB will make for a strong league and valuable TV property. It is going to take time but it is not hard to imagine the MWC being the premier mid-level league and soon overtaking the BE and ACC at the next level.

As a fan I welcome maintaining the regional flavor and rivalaries. I also predict that with the FB playoff scheme (which will expand I predict) that you will see other teams return to more regional affiliations.

No one would have predicted BSU would be at this level ten years ago. To suggest they can no longer improve in this or any other league is myopic. This is a great time to be a BSU fan. Go Broncos.

Just how does the new "innovative"

help the rest of the conference? Unless BSU getting more and the rest of the conference getting less is helping the conference.....

"No one would have predicted BSU would be at this level ten years ago."

Don't look now, but are now at the same level we were in 2002.

Check out what the Wyoming AD had to say ...


I think it helps the rest of the league for a couple reasons:

• Other teams will see increased TV revenue
• Other teams now have more stability, rather than several other MW schools jumping a "Western" Big East
• Other teams are better positioned as the No. 5 football conference

-- murph


* The "rest of the conference will see an overall increase from just having BSU, but Boise stands to take home 6-8 times more TV money than any other program.

* "Stability"? Except for Fresno and Vegas these are all small time/small market programs

* Right now the MAC and Big East are in front of the MWC and within three years the Sun Belt will pass them.

We have been around most of these programs 10+ years, They had every chance to grow into consistent winning programs. None have. What in the world makes anyone think that now, all of sudden, they will all become solid programs? I posted this morning that next years schedule is eerily similar to the 2002 schedule. The teams on that 2002 schedule have not grown, they haven't become better, their budgets are not much bigger today. Boise would have to cut $7M a year off their football budget just to get to the conference average. Don't get me started on fan support for these other programs, Boise State has been playing in front of empty at most of their conference road games the last few years. And now it won't be long before empty seats start showing up at Bronco stadium as more and more games will be blowouts by halftime.

Sorry, BSU is right back where they where 10 years ago......


I happen to agree that remaining in the MWC is not a step up. Perhaps the time isn't yet right for there to be a new conference that aspires to a higher level. Maybe the time will never be right. Anyway, at least BSU gets a decent TV package and it's good the conference will benefit. In the meantime, I really wanted to see BSU in a entrepreneurial partnership with the Big East. I think the outcome of a new BE had potential to be special.

Ten years ago we were HAPPY, did VOICES exist in 2003?

Maybe it would be better without Voices. Soccer Moms have given way to Football Posters. Whine and Cheesed.


Apple users, run the Gig of RAM your PC needs to have and read the dumb tech white papers, wrinkle your forehead and buy more food and toilet paper with the difference. The internet is a piece of junk anyway and your cats know this.


I don't think is alive and well in the USofA.

Your conclusions might be right but your facts and history,

need some serious revision. We have been ranked in all but two weeks this season in football and are two wins away from being ranked in men's basketball? You should research how many other schools have that claim? Not saying it makes us PAC-12, but just state your opinions next time and leave the facts to the literate.

Blue on Blue Back!

Right move to make. The Big East was dying and hey Boise got what they wanted out of the MW:

Boise State won several concessions from the Mountain West. Here is more from the school's release:

A key factor in Boise State’s decision to remain in the Mountain West has been the Bronco’s home football television rights. In its new agreement with the Mountain West, the league will ensure Boise State home football games are not part of any current or future Mountain West Conference wide television rights contract.

The league will guarantee the rights to Boise State home football games that are sold as a separate package. The revenue from such Boise State home football games shall be retained by the Mountain West and added to the Mountain West media revenues to be disbursed in the same manner as all other league media revenues.

Boise State and other football teams in the Mountain West who appear on national television (ESPN, ESPN2, ABC, NBC, CBS and Fox) will be paid a bonus of $300,000 per game, with an additional $200,000 for a Saturday game.

The Mountain West will honor Boise State’s existing non-conference scheduling commitments for future games and the league will not regulate Boise State’s uniform colors or designs. Specifically the Bronco’s will be permitted to wear all blue uniforms at home.