Conference Realignment Recap: Who's Where In 2012, 2013 And Beyond

SOUTH BEND IN - SEPTEMBER 04: Armando Allen Jr. #5 of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish runs for a yardage against the Purdue Boilermakers at Notre Dame Stadium on September 4 2010 in South Bend Indiana. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Which college teams are in which conferences now, and where will they be next year? Not only do we have all 11 conferences in list form, we've got some projections for the future.

Conference realignment! It never ends, but it does offer up waypoints that have even the most diligent college fans losing track of which schools are going where. Thus, with the Mountain West, Sun Belt and Conference USA all making finalized (or reported) moves this week, it's a fine time to catch up on adjustments both pending and possible, from the independents to the power leagues.

First up, the WAC. Alphabetical order after that. It's the smallest courtesy we can extend a conference on life support. With only two football schools left for 2013, the WAC's only FBS option is to convince a slew of FCS schools to take the double risk of jumping up a level and joining the Mountain West's trough.

Seems highly unlikely. But just for the sake of argument, let's say they're able to somehow steal a foursome from the far more stable Big Sky, perhaps by hijacking Twitter accounts. The Big Sky was a better football conference even before the latest round of losses. Swear it's less crazy after this.

2012 (7) 2013 (2) Wild Future Guess (6)

Fresno State Idaho Eastern Washington

Hawai'i Louisiana Tech Idaho

Idaho New Mexico State Montana

Louisiana Tech San Jose State Montana State

Nevada Texas State New Mexico State

New Mexico State UT-San Antonio Sacramento State

San Jose State Utah State

Texas State

UT-San Antonio

Utah State

On to saner things. The ACC's set to continue its march up the eastern seaboard, bringing on a pair from the Big East, likely for 2013. They'd like Notre Dame after that, but since that's unlikely, let's say they just continue digesting everything Big Eastly about the Big East. It's a strategy, and certain people do really like basketball.

As for encroachments, the SEC prefers to stay on good terms with its nearest neighbor, but rumors of the Virginia Tech-to-SEC and Maryland-to-Big Ten variety will sprout indefinitely.

2012 (12) 2013 (14) Wild Future Guess (16)

Boston College Boston College Boston College

Clemson Clemson Clemson

Duke Duke Connecticut

Florida State Florida State Duke

Georgia Tech Georgia Tech Florida State

Maryland Maryland Georgia Tech

Miami Miami Maryland

N.C. State N.C. State Miami

North Carolina North Carolina N.C. State

Virginia Pitt North Carolina

Virginia Tech Syracuse Pitt

Wake Forest Virginia Rutgers

Virginia Tech Syracuse

Wake Forest Virginia

Virginia Tech

Wake Forest

Which brings us back to the Big East. At this rate, they might just f--- around and go global.

The future addition of Navy insulates them against one loss, but with both the ACC and Big 12 at the gates, that might not be enough to stay at the magic number of football schools (12). Keeping in touch for so long with Air Force and Army could finally pay off, somebody finally realizes ECU's fan base is super legit, and let's say that, "OOOOOOOH MEDIA MARKETS" thing lets Georgia State pull a South Florida.

Look at this mess!

2012 (8) 2013 (12) 2015 (13) Wild Future Guess (14)

Cincinnati Boise State Boise State Air Force

Connecticut Central Florida Central Florida Army

Louisville Cincinnati Cincinnati Boise State

Pitt Connecticut Connecticut Central Florida

Rutgers Houston Houston Cincinnati

South Florida Louisville Louisville Connecticut

Syracuse Memphis Memphis East Carolina

TCU Rutgers Navy Georgia State

Temple San Diego State Rutgers Houston

West Virginia SMU San Diego State Louisville

South Florida SMU Memphis

Temple South Florida Navy

Temple Rutgers

San Diego State


South Florida


The Big Ten is gonna stand pat unless Notre Dame's slowly fading national presence (or that impending playoff system) sends the Irish into a conference. If they did come aboard, we'd hear chatter like Duke, Kansas, Georgia Tech, Maryland, Syracuse or Virginia coming on to even things up, sending ripples all the way down to the FCS. Notre Dame is pretty much its own national scenario.

Jim Delany squints at the horizon and sheathes his blade.

2012 (12)





Michigan State




Ohio State

Penn State



Once the nation's most imperiled conference -- that was only last year! -- the Big 12 has found stability for at least the next half-decade. They're doing a lot of publicly dismissing a move to 12, so expect a move to 12.

Every couple months, BYU, Cincinnati and Louisville emerge in one report or another as Big 12 candidates, so there we go.

2012 (10) Wild Future Guess (12)

Baylor Baylor

Iowa State BYU

Kansas Iowa State

Kansas State Kansas

Missouri Kansas State

Oklahoma Louisville

Oklahoma State Oklahoma

TCU Oklahoma State

Texas TCU

Texas A&M Texas

Texas Tech Texas Tech

West Virginia West Virginia

Oh, Lord, Conference USA. If you clicked through hoping to see a roster for any one conference, it was probably this one. The Big East's new feeder league is reportedly pulling in six for now, but will continue to need re-ups.

2012 (12) 2013 (14) Wild Future Guess (14)

Central Florida Central Florida Appalachian State

East Carolina Charlotte Charlotte

Houston East Carolina East Carolina

Marshall FIU FIU

Memphis Houston Louisiana Tech

Rice Louisiana Tech Marshall

SMU Marshall North Texas

Southern Miss Memphis Old Dominion

Tulane North Texas Rice

Tulsa Old Dominion Southern Miss

UAB Rice Tulane


Southern Miss UAB

Tulane UT-San Antonio

Tulsa UTEP


UT-San Antonio


Bless you, MAC. Continue to placate your nearby conference powers by annually sacrificing coaching talent and nobody will bother you. You have an odd number of teams, which is fun.

But do you want a Villanova? The Big East keeps telling the Wildcats that their stadium isn't big enough, and now the Big East has a Philly team anyway. Dual conference citizenship for Villanova, how 'bout it?

2012 (13) Wild Future Guess (14)

Akron Touchdowns

Ball State Villanova

Bowling Green


Central Michigan

Eastern Michigan

Kent State

Miami (Ohio)

Northern Illinois





Western Michigan

Up above, we have the WAC taking some new teams, which of course means they'll just end up in the Mountain West. This is the natural order of things.

2012 (10) 2013 (10) Wild Future Guess (12)

Air Force Air Force Air Force

Boise State Boise State Colorado State

Colorado State Colorado State Fresno State

Fresno State Fresno State Hawai'i

Hawai'i Hawai'i Montana

Nevada Nevada Nevada

New Mexico New Mexico New Mexico

San Diego State San Diego State Sacramento State

TCU San Jose State San Jose State

UNLV UNLV Texas State

Wyoming Utah State UNLV

Wyoming Utah State


Moving beyond Earth matters, there's the Pac-12. Interstellar media rights aren't going to figure themselves out. Leave Larry Scott to his work. Unless you'd reconsider the LongPac Network, Texas.

2012 (12)


Arizona State




Oregon State






Washington State

The SEC likewise holds at 14, with Clemson, Florida State and Virginia Tech rumors continuing forever. And whenever the Big 12 erupts next, get ready to hear about Oklahoma and West Virginia again. But after the fit SEC fans justifiably pitched when it looked like cross-division rivalries were going away due to two new teams ... you'd be a bold man, Mr. Slive.

2012 (14)








Mississippi State


Ole Miss

South Carolina


Texas A&M


All of which brings us to the Sun Belt, a conference in danger of finding itself at the bottom of the WAC-less pecking order. Conference USA has already taken a pair, and C-USA has both strength in swelling numbers (worked for the WAC!) and a friend in the Mountain West. The SBC's only move is to harbor call-ups -- luckily, its general vicinity has some viable ones.

2012 (10) 2013 (10) Wild Future Guess (12)

Arkansas State Arkansas State Arkansas State


FIU FIU Georgia Southern

MTSU Georgia State Georgia State

North Texas MTSU Jacksonville State

South Alabama North Texas James Madison

Troy South Alabama Liberty

UL-Lafayette Texas State MTSU

UL-Monroe Troy South Alabama

Western Kentucky UL-Lafayette Texas State

UL-Monroe Troy

Western Kentucky UL-Lafayette


Western Kentucky

So that's it. All the moves on the table right now, from ones that are already happening to those that might. Once Notre Dame joins the MAC, we'll reassess.

While we’re here, let’s watch some college football videos from SB Nation’s new YouTube channel together:

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