Judgment Day for UAB coming in June?

April 10, 2015 by Derek Redd

It looks like the University of Alabama at Birmingham will learn its future in Conference USA, if it has one, at the June executive committee meetings. The Virginian-Pilot is reporting that’s when the conference will decide whether to keep UAB, despite the school dropping football, or part ways. Current league bylaws dictate that all member schools must field football teams.

The answer I received when I called the conference offices Friday afternoon was that C-USA was remaining patient with the decision and monitoring UAB’s next moves. But let’s face it, UAB announced its decision to drop the sport in early December. By those meetings, UAB will have had six months to decide whether it wants to change course, and C-USA will have had six months to watch the university deal with the issue. That’s plenty of time for both sides.

UAB president Ray Watts said he would lobby for his school to remain in C-USA, and it is one of two charter members remaining (Southern Miss is the other and Marshall, Rice and UTEP are the next most-senior members, joining in 2005). One question, though, is how important is charter membership in a conference that didn’t exist until 1995 and has nine members who joined in 2013 or later? This isn’t exactly Michigan threatening to leave the Big Ten.

The conference could decide to keep UAB around, but would it really be fair to give the university a cut of conference TV revenues — built mostly upon football — when it doesn’t field a team in its most crucial sport?

I agree with Virginian-Pilot scribe Harry Minium, who predicts C-USA will let UAB stay in the conference for the 2015-16 season while it searches for a new home. The conference has been gutted in recent years, mostly by the American Athletic Conference, so it knows how much uncertainty stinks. Commissioner Britton Banowsky seems like a guy who wouldn’t want those student-athletes set adrift into the void with no clear direction.

Direction still seems to be lacking at UAB these days. The administration was even having problems picking a consultant to review the decision to drop football. As patient as Conference USA has been with the Blazers, it looks like UAB’s time might run out in June.


4 Responses to “Judgment Day for UAB coming in June?”

  1. Boyee says:

    Conference USA has lost 14 schools in its 20 years of existence if UAB is kicked out, they’ll have less schools in the conference than schools that left. UNC Charlotte was also a founding member but left for the Atlantic 10 for 7 years.

  2. Boyee says:

    Conference USA was essentially gutted due to the ACC stealing 7 schools from the conference now known as the American Athletic Conference (Boston College, University of Louisville, University of Miami, Notre Dame University (except football and hockey), University of Pittsburgh, Syracuse University, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University).And the Big 12 Conference stealing West Virginia University. University of Cincinnati and the University of Connecticut are stuck in The American with only 1 other northern school Temple University.

  3. Boyee says:

    Louisville, Notre Dame and Pittsburgh are all in states that don’t even touch the Atlantic Coast.

  4. Boyee says:

    UAB should be wise and add football again so they aren’t bounced from C-USA

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