The status quo was violently disrupted in one of the most tumultuous off seasons in NCAA history. With the loss of longtime rival Utah to the more prestigious Pac-10 conference, BYU needed to counter to remain on similar ground with ‘that team up North’. BYU has elected to pursue football independence while grounding its other sports in the West Coast Conference.
Why would BYU do this, especially when their inclusion in the MWC would heavily factor into the MWC becoming an automatic qualifier in the BCS? Many people are sneering at this decision, arguing that they do not have a better shot at qualifying as an independent, while still sacrificing its other programs to lesser competition. This would make sense if the move was influenced only by athletic mechanisms.