With the burst of conference expansion apparently done for some mystical while, with Utah tucked away in the Pac-10, the question regarding where the Cougars will end up, beyond where they already are, is a story without an ending.
And it’s a story that will stay without an ending for the foreseeable future. All of which puts BYU at a large competitive disadvantage against the Utes, even as they commence competing in completely different leagues.
It will start slowly, but, if no more immediate changes come, the plate tectonics on each side of a looming financial gap between Utah and BYU could separate the two schools in a significant manner. Not that all BCS league schools utilize their big stacks of money to their direct competitive benefit versus non-BCS league schools and their miniscule piles. But the ones that are led by capable administrators and coaches do.
That separation begins with powerful perceptions regarding what it means to be a member of a conference such as the Pac-10, complete with its TV deal, its prestige, its Rose Bowl, its access to opportunity in the form of a national championship. Kyle Whittingham recently addressed that aspect when he talked about the positive impact affiliation with the Pac-10 has already had on recruiting.