Vandals, Aggies headed to Sun Belt
Idaho and New Mexico State, who were left without a conference when the WAC imploded, will join the Sun Belt as football-only members in 2014, sources said Tuesday.
The two schools were members of the WAC but were the only remaining football programs that didn't have a new conference home for this fall. The Aggies and Vandals will remain independents this fall before joining the Sun Belt in 2014.
On Monday, ESPN reported that Appalachian State and Georgia Southern were moving from the FCS to the FBS ranks of the Sun Belt. While transitioning from FCS to FBS, Appalachian State and Georgia Southern will be full-fledged members in all Sun Belt sports but football in 2014, before becoming eligible for the Sun Belt football championship and bowl games in 2015.
When the new schools join, the Sun Belt will have a 12-member football and basketball conference. Full members will be Appalachian State, Arkansas State, Georgia Southern, Georgia State, Louisiana-Lafayette, Louisiana-Monroe, South Alabama, Texas State, Troy and Western Kentucky.
Idaho and New Mexico State will be football-only members. Arkansas-Little Rock and Texas-Arlington will be full members in all sports except football.
The Sun Belt sought new teams after losing Florida Atlantic, Florida International, North Texas and Middle Tennessee to Conference USA.