Report: Fresno State has agreed to join the Mountain West Conference [Updated]
Well, things move fast. The Fresno Bee is reporting that Fresno State will leave the Western Athletic Conference and join the Mountain West Conference. The paper reports the official announcement will come this evening. WAC Commissioner Karl Benson has so far declined comment.
Earlier Wednesday, the Mountain West Conference extended invitations to Fresno State and Nevada on the wave of reports Brigham Young was poised to leave the Mountain West and become an independent in football, with all other sports competing in the WAC. In fact, the Salt Lake City Tribune is reporting BYU's departure is a done deal, although there has been no official announcement from the school.
Nevada President Milton Glick told the Reno Gazette that his school is "seriously considering" the Mountain West's invitation. [UPDATED, 6:40 p.m.: Nevada reportedly will be joining the Bulldogs in the Mountain West Conference.]
Boise State has already announced it will be moving from the WAC to the Mountain West in 2011. The loss of Fresno State, Boise State and Nevada would leave the WAC with only six football-playing schools. That would force the WAC to bolster its membership. Raiding 12-team Conference USA would be one option.
Neither the Mountain West or the WAC champion receives an automatic berth in one of four Bowl Championship Series games. The six conferences with automatic bids are the Pac-10, Big Ten, Big 12, Atlantic Coast, Southeastern and Big East.
-- Chris Dufresne