OT: UMass looking to drop to FCS

Submitted by Wolverine Devotee on April 28th, 2016 at 1:30 PM

After Idaho dropped, EMU refuted talk of dropping, UMass is pushing for dropping out of FBS and going back to FCS at their faculty senate meeting.

UMass has been an utter disaster since joining FBS.

Once a proud FCS program that won a national championship in 1998, UMass joined FBS in 2012 and gained MAC membership as an affiliate member with a requirement to join the league in all sports a couple years later or get booted like Temple did.

UMass has gone 8-40 overall and 7-25 in the MAC since the jump. They went 2-22 in their first two seasons. Michigan played them in their first FBS season in 2012, a game which was a far cry from the 2010 meeting where the #17 ranked FCS team put a scare into us. 

UMass was booted from the MAC recently after not joining for all sports, so now they face a similar fate as Idaho. Play as an independent or drop.


The University of Massachusetts faculty senate continues to call for the school to either drop down to FCS or cancel its program altogether, a revised agenda for Thursday's upcoming meeting revealed.
The faculty senate, meeting for its second-to-last session of the spring semester, does not have the power to bring on the change but has a motion that will urge the university's chancellor, president and board of trustees to "end Division I football (Football Bowl Subdivision) at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and either move to a different division or discontinue NCAA football."


The Mad Hatter

April 28th, 2016 at 1:39 PM ^

The P5 should really be a separate league / division.  I also think that P5 schools should only be allowed to schedule each other for the most part (maybe 1 G5 game per year).  I know that screws the smaller schools, but I also don't care.

I'd much rather schedule USC, LSU, ND, Arkansas, etc than early season MAC snacks.  Making P5 teams play more games against other P5 teams will elevate the level of competition and make all the teams play better football in the long-term.

MI Expat NY

April 28th, 2016 at 2:46 PM ^

I think being a little bigger than just the P5 is advisable.  Maybe include the AAC and MWC plus Army, BYU and ND as independents.  If you're just the P5, you're either going to have a new class of P5 schools that settle as the consistent body bags for the powers in college football, or you have a lot of powers that have to get used to losing more than 4 games on a pretty regular basis.  Neither scenario is great for the long term health of college football.  

I do agree that the MAC/C-USA/Sun Belt should be playing FCS football.  


April 28th, 2016 at 3:09 PM ^

I'm definitely on board here. I mean, really, hearing that Idaho was dropping a division to play against teams like Montana and NDSU... it's not much different at all, is it? How much worse could it be for EMU to play Youngstown State instead of Bowling Green? They might as well all be in the same pool.

FWIW I don't mind Michigan playing one of these snacks a year, and I kind of like giving the smaller local schools a chance to come to Michigan Stadium. But let's call it what it is.

Mr Miggle

April 28th, 2016 at 4:14 PM ^

The SEC is finally requiring members to play at least one P5 opponent in non-conf. I really don't see the need to kill off the smaller programs. It certainly doesn't help the players to have fewer scholarshps available.


April 28th, 2016 at 1:33 PM ^

There are just way too many teams in FBS that shouldn't be there. They're not even competing for the same thing as power five teams. MAC teams shouldn't be in there either. They should create a new division between FBS and FCS. 


April 28th, 2016 at 1:52 PM ^

That drought would have been longer had original schedules stayed that same. 1995 Miami-Ohio replaced what originally was going to be the OTHER Miami. But the Canes cancelled after completely retooling their schedule.

Likewise, Oklahoma State was originally going to come to the big house in 2000 (like they did in 1992) but they pulled out and we had to replace them with Bowling Green.

Once we got in the 2000's, it became some unwritten requirement to play MAC schools.

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April 28th, 2016 at 5:34 PM ^

And the FSU game basically sucked, as it was a) hot, b) I accidentally smacked my good friend in the head while throwing a marshmallow and c) I think FSU returned two Grbac passes for TDs, amongst other big plays.

The ND game made up for it though -- Desmond's catch!


April 28th, 2016 at 1:51 PM ^

is amazing is that we did not see it coming on some level.  We had really snuck by a couple of cupcakes in the previous years (having to hold on to beat Ball State at home the previous year), we were absolutely terrible against the spread, App. St. was a last second fill in that had not been scouted at all, and we were in someways ridiculously overrated having lost to OSU and getting smoked by SC and then losing 7 defensive starters.  At the time, I was all "no F-ing way," but reading about it and watching it since it actually isn't that surprising.


April 28th, 2016 at 1:50 PM ^

Yeah but those are major upsets that only happen once and a while and usually only to teams like Minnesota, Kansas, Oregon State. Florida was poop under Muschamp and we shit the bed against App State. Those teams still wouldn't win a NC. Everyone was all "Ohhh Northern Illinois deserves a shot" in 2012 and they were stomped. The only teams that have proven legit from lower conferences are TCU and Boise State.


April 28th, 2016 at 3:14 PM ^

I would hope that if some movement occurs to establish a "Power 5" division or some such that a few of the better non-P5 schools get a bump under whatever Notre Dame clause is produced. BYU, Boise, etc. 

A Power 5 division might wind up having to be a Power 6 division, or a division in which existing conference affiliations are significantly restructured. We're already getting there in the B1G, and if the occasionally discussed (at least by us) 16-team league happens the B1G as we know it is basically already gone.


April 29th, 2016 at 1:37 AM ^

On the other hand, Indiana has gone 6-5 against the MAC in their last eleven. Purdue is 5-5 in their last ten with one win over EMU and another a very close bowl game (37-32) against a WMU team that finished 3rd(!) in their division. The bottom of the MAC is terrible, but the bottom of the P5 isn't really any better than a solid MAC team. Look at what Bowling Green did to Maryland last year, or Toledo to Arkansas. Those were hardly generational MAC teams and yet they pretty much disposed of middle of the road Big Ten and SEC teams, on the road.

Of course, Indiana and Purdue will get grandfathered in and the MAC teams will get screwed when the split inevitably happens. And I'd love to see a G5 playoff. But there's significantly more overlap here than people are admitting.



April 28th, 2016 at 2:26 PM ^

The only mid-major eith sustained success is Boise St. Otherwise you only need look back at recent mid-major powers to see how quickly it crumbles. Southern Miss, Fresno St, Northern Illinois, etc. All of them hope to get to double digit wins once a decade or pull of a miracle upset but 9 times out of 10 you're a non-descript 7-5 mid-major team

Avon Barksdale

April 28th, 2016 at 1:54 PM ^

I hate when traditional FCS powers jump to a conference like the MAC or Sun-Belt. I am one of those guys that really enjoys FCS football and their playoff format. Schools like Appalachian State and UMass who jump divisions usually end up hurting themselves and hurting the quality of FCS football as well.

The only time I could see it making sense is if you are jumping to a conference that makes sense: P5 or the American.


April 28th, 2016 at 1:55 PM ^

I go to Toledo and it would be much more enjoyable to see them with a chance to win a national title than have their ceiling be the GMAC bowl win. That being said it was fun to see them beat Bert last year.

Avon Barksdale

April 28th, 2016 at 2:57 PM ^

Really not a bad idea for them to have their own division. I went to a Conference USA school and one argument was always, "What are we playing for really -- the New Orleans Bowl?" I would definitely love to watch a Boise State v. Air Force, Navy v. Toledo G5 Playoff. That would be fun.

It would also give life to the fan bases who believe their teams have a shot for a national championship down the stretch. There are good enough programs to make it competitive year in and year out.


April 28th, 2016 at 3:07 PM ^

Instead of going to the New Mexico Bowl, get the group of 5 conferences to send their top 4 conference champs (with the exception of any qualifying for the full CFP) to a 4 team tournament to be played during the bowl season. its a way to give these teams something to play for against other high level talent within the group of 5.


April 28th, 2016 at 3:22 PM ^

That's the fun of MACtion!

I think the MAC should stay FCS and just stop lighting money on fire. Over the last 15 years the investment in MAC football has gone through the roof with returns on the field remaining roughly the same. The MAC does have more bowl bids now but that's just because of the number of bowls has grown and they used to have a terrible deal where one team went bowling (IIRC Urban had a 9 or 10 win BGSU squad with Josh Harris at QB had to sit at home one year). Believe the schools all lose money on the bowls outside of whatever they're calling the Detroit bowl today.


April 28th, 2016 at 2:20 PM ^

Likely a good move, much like Idaho they'll have a lot more local rivals from making the drop down and the level of interest will be better.

I don;t have a problem with teams trying to make the leap, but I also want them to acknowledge reality when it doesn't quite work out.


April 28th, 2016 at 2:23 PM ^

Really everyone in FBS but for Power 5 schools and some select mid-majors are all just glorified FCS programs. Instead of playing to get to the FCS playoffs they play to get paid beating from Power 5 teams and then hope to go 9-3 and go to a decent bowl game. Power 5 should probably just be the 60 or so teams with an actual shot at a title and FCS should get bigger.


April 28th, 2016 at 3:05 PM ^

6 Conferences with 12 teams a piece-- every team has a stadium requirement (50k?).

Every Conference plays a 9 game conference schedule with 1 out of conference game. 

Top 16 tournament: 6 Conference winners, 10 at large, with profits split evenly among conferences.

Top seeds host the first two rounds; "final four" similar to today follows.

Every team in the tournament gets 4 games.

16-32 has a "second-level" tournament played throughout december

Rest of the teams get randomly selected for home/home games.

Larger FCS schools and the rest of D-1 form a new D-II.



April 28th, 2016 at 3:16 PM ^

won't happen.  Anything that is going to happen will have to done within the confines of a bowl structure.  The best we are going to get within the next 10-15 year is an expansion to 8 teams with Sugar, Rose, Peach, Fiesta, Cotton, and perhaps Citrus all hosting playoff games of in either the round of 8 and 4 each year.  This actually may not be that far off.