Conference Affiliation

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Per Marcus' request...I have started a new topic regarding our conference affiliation.

My previous post...

I attended VCU during the Metro Conference years. As I mentioned previously, we did not win any tournament championships or receive any bids to the NCAA Tourney during those years. There was one occasion that we probably should have (the NCAA committee gave Tulane the at large bid over us...even though we beat them on their home court late in the season). However, the conference was stacked...Louisville, Tulane, Southern Miss, VA Tech, UNCC, South Florida, etc. Multiple NBA players came through the league at that time. We got to see them all. Because the league was awarded multiple bids, every game had meaning and the atmosphere was electric. I can't recall exactly what happened, either we were kicked out or we were not selected to be part of CUSA (along with VATech) and we moved to the CAA at that time. I graduated in December of '95, our first year in the CAA. I went to all of the games up until I graduated and I can assure you that the level of competition dropped off dramatically. For most of us who attended the VCU games during the Metro years, the CAA was a very big disappointment. I realize we dominated the CAA in '95/'96 and went to the NCAA Tourney that year but that is not the point. The CAA games were boring in comparison and have been ever since. The CAA has been a hard pill for me and many other VCU Ram fans to swallow after spending several years in a much better conference. VCU is capable of competing at a higher level and I remain hopeful that we will return to a power conference in the near future.
 
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I thought that the Sun Belt Conference was even better. But you are right; competition has never been the same since those two conferences.
 
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I wish we were in a better conference as well, but VCU has done very well even as a CAA member. More importantly look at the success in the NCAA Tourny. (3 times in 5 years)

1 point loss to Chris paul led Wake '04
beat Duke, almost beat Pitt '07
3 pt loss to UAB (NIT) '08
1 point loss to UCLA '09

- Wins over Maryland, Houston, Louisville, UNM, Bradley in the past few years.
My point here is that we can definetely hang with the big boys when it matters. I do wish like many others we could get to the Sweet 16 or better, however, we will as long as the program keeps getting better. And it definetely is doing just that.

Also.......
3 CAA reg. season crowns in the last 3 years
Lots more TV coverage, national and regional.

Very nice facility (Siegel Center), with amazing fans. The ole coliseum days were kind of boring as far as the fans, and spirit.

VCU just has to continue hiring great up and coming coaches. CAA or not, doesn't really matter, the program is fine with great coaching and only getting better. (got a nice feelin' bout Shaka)
Also, we will have two players playing in the NBA soon. We are just going to have to suck it up in the CAA. I doubt another bigtime conference is going to form anytime soon. The A-10, C-USA, oh heck no! Great programs win despite what conference they are in.

Top Non BCS schools for Col. B-BALL for the last 5 years..
(in no order)
VCU
DAVIDSON
SIENA
ST. MARYS
CREIGHTON
WEST KENTUCKY
N. IOWA
BUTLER

(there could be others, just these are what I come up with)
I also feel that the CAA is up there with the WCC and MVC. Not bad if you ask me...

Oh one more point............LIL' WAYNE and LEO DICAPRIO love us!!!
 
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I hate doing this, but you gotta ad GMU to that top non BCS list.

Also now that Calipari is gone, Memphis will blow. Thus sending C-USA into a tailspin putting on par with the likes of the Southern, and Bigsouth conferences, and bottom 6 of the CAA. A-10 is really only 4 deep. The other 10 are no better than the CAA. I'd say equal to (middle of the pack in the CAA, maybe), sometimes weaker.
 
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Sorry, got a lot on my mind tonight.

Okay, the C-USA we'll be better than stated above, but not as strong as the CAA. I seriously feel that way, but The A-10, that to me is no different than the CAA in regards to being a mid-major. Dayton and Xavier are really the only majors in that conference.

I really should go to bed..............as I lay down I need to consider something.......can Burgess play point?
 

MarcusNation

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Conference affiliation is tough. I personally can probably argue both sides. But truth be told, we are in zero position to move anywhere. We have had an outstanding 5 or so years, but we have really taken it to the next level, which would be required to happen. First off, we would have to find a conference without football. Not impossible, but certainly limits us. Secondly, we have to maintain a level of dominance for anyone outside of Richmond/CAA to take notice of us. People knew our name is '07, people knew our name this past season, but did anyone care in between? Imagine that we didn't have Maynor, drawing what little attention was had that year, during postseason. People care about BCS schools. We have to be in the postseason every single year before our peers will recognize us. And, beyond that, we have to be winning in the postseason. I'm not saying it isn't something we should strive for, and I'm not saying it isn't a attainable. I am saying however, right now, the CAA might be the best fit for us. GMU and ODU are both making strides, just like us, in making the CAA a nationally recognized conference. This is my take on it right now.
 
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We belong in the CAA right now.

It is the right conference for us.

We are a mid-major basketball program AND ALWAYS WILL BE.

Anyone that thinks VCU belongs somewhere else is delusional at best.

We will NEVER be a competitive ACC school.


Rambler, you are probably the single most annoying poster that moved with us from The Zone. You apparently have absolutely zero understanding of what VCU is and what we will be. You have absolutely zero understanding of the business aspects of big-basketball schools. VCU will never be one of those schools. Ever.

If you are really "bored" with following a mid-major basketball program, then go somewhere else. VCU isn't going to change that for you any time soon.
 

Ramdog

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Rambler, you are probably the single most annoying poster that moved with us from The Zone. You apparently have absolutely zero understanding of what VCU is and what we will be.


ouch...well I guess it is good to be #1

For you "Johnny come latelys"...forgive us guys that were there when we had great crowds at the RC ,were ranked in the top 20 ,features in SI, and got a 2,(two, one number from a one) seed in the NCAA tourney...anybody remember knocking of Louisville & being the lead story on ESPN that night....heady times indeed.
 
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What are we gonna do with these "young bucks" Dog???

VCU will never be one of those schools. Ever.

VCU was one of those schools once. That is what Rambler is trying to say. Don't rag him out for his opinion. Now I am a realist. VCU will probably never be one of "those schools" again. But to Ramdog's point, some of us remember 13,000 in the Coliseum against Bryon Russell and Lucious Harris of Long Beach State(kicked thier A$$). Or another 13,000 with Denny Crum and Louisville in the house. Or a packed house against Gene Bartow and Jerome Mincy when UAB came to town. We will not forget those times. So learn to, at the very least, respect your elders.
 

vcubob

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I agree VCU will probably never be able to join the ACC. We do not, however need to be content with the "Mid-Major" label. VCU should strive to be the best team in the state and forget about the labels. ODU, GMU & James Madison should feel the same way. The CAA has improved a lot since since VCU "fell" into it. No reason VCU can't be ranked in the top 20 and still be in the CAA. It's easy to look back and say how great it was way back then and miss the opportunity right in front you. Build the rivalries, Keep winning, improve the OOC schedule, increase the revenue and win some NCAA games. Just do it.
 
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Ramdog said:
For you "Johnny come latelys"...forgive us guys that were there when we had great crowds at the RC ,were ranked in the top 20 ,features in SI, and got a 2,(two, one number from a one) seed in the NCAA tourney...anybody remember knocking of Louisville & being the lead story on ESPN that night....heady times indeed.

Ah yes, 1985 was truly a bustling time. Nothing like enjoying Rocky IV with the girlfriend, or the future wonder that was to be New Coke. The Kansas City Royals graced us as MLB champions, and the guppies were introduced to beauties like the Saab 9000. And to cap it all off, VCU was the #2 seed in the NCAA tournament. Those were the days.
 
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Well when I was first a VCU fan we weren't even in a conference. So I have been through each of the affiliations over the years/decades. Therefore, the CAA seems pretty good compared to where we started and the subsequent ECAC mess. Yes the Sun Belt/Metro years were great for basketball, but not really good for most of the other sports.

We are not going to another conference until we either develop a quality Div I (BCS) football team or until the Big East and/or the A-10 implode under their own weight allowing the creation of new basketball only conferences from the debris.

The best option right now is to have the CAA improve their RPIs and be more proactive in picking up some new quality teams and get rid of a couple of the continual bottomfeeders.
 

Natty

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I think the CAA has done a pretty solid job of building their brand in this BCS dominated era. I don't see us jumping to the ACC or Big East anytime soon...and I don't think the A-10 or CUSA are really a step up at all.
CUSA is a very unattractive league without Memphis, and while the A-10 has had some teams do some great things, they still have some really week schools/fan bases...

I would love to see a mix of top CAA and A10 teams field a new conference and really challenge the power conferences as far as at large bids, but I also understand that would be a heck of a process.

With all that, I think the CAA is in some great markets, and if we can do better at winning out of conference, our league will continue to get better. I also would love to see JMU continue to make strides under Brady. I really believe having 4 strong VA rivals (VCU, ODU, Mason, and JMU) would be great for attendance numbers of all those schools (hate the unbalanced schedules). Getting Hofstra in as an at large out of NYC could be great pub for the conference as well.
 

Mistachill

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2009 is a lot different than 1985 (or even 1995 for that matter). Again, we get it...people want to join to better conference. OK, what conference should we join (since all we have to do is tell somebody we want to join their conference)? The anti-CAA people spend 99% of their time ragging the CAA and glorifying the Sun Belt and Metro days, but tell us where we're suppose to go? Are all the east coast conferences suppose to all realign just to accommodate us?

I have no problem wanting to set a goal of joining a higher profile conference. I have no problem acknowledging the level of competition in the Metro days. The funny thing is when we were in the Sun Belt we routinely got multiple teams in the tournament (and this was before 64 teams got in) and guess what a lot of us did at the time...complain about needing to get out of the Sun Belt!!! I don't think we appreciated how good that conference was at the time. The major drawback was the travel, which would be the same situation in C-USA minus the quality of teams.

But back to my point, what conference do you anti-CAA people want us to join? The A-10? They already have too many teams. C-USA? How is that a significant upgrade especially with Calipari out of the conference? ACC or Big East? Not happening. So what's left?

Our best bet is for the conference to collectively to do its best to elevate ALL of the teams. Here is my suggestion:

1) We need to follow the game plan of the A-10 and require all teams set up non-conference schedules that meet a certain standard.

2) We also need to develop an unbalanced schedule that allows the top CAA teams to play as few bottom feeders teams as possible each year. Forget the 6 year rotating schedule. Every pre-season take the 6 teams predicted to finish at the top half of the CAA and make sure they all play each other twice and limit the number of times they have to play Delaware, Towson, W&M etc. I'm not sure how the math works, but whatever needs to be done to make sure the top teams have as little exposure as possible to having their RPI dragged down by having to play GA State twice, do it.

3) Strongly try to encourage W&M to join the Patriot League and try to replace them with somebody like Charleston or Davidson or maybe you can somehow talk Charlotte into joining the CAA (they haven't done that well in the A-10 and they're pretty isolated geographically). In terms of basketball W&M is just a bad fit in the CAA.

4) Once we get our top teams to the point of having strong NCAA resumes, follow the A-10 lead and make sure the tournament results maximize our NCAA bids. I'm not saying its a conspiracy, but its funny how the A-10's top team always seems to get upset in the their tournament and they get an extra team in the dance when people predicted they would be a one bid conference (I'm kinda half kidding with this one...actually I'm not).

5) While all this is going on, VCU should try to position itself so that when an opportunity arise to join to a better conference we're in a position to do so. Whether we want to admit it or not, ODU will probably be in that position well before VCU.
 

Mercury

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Sometimes said:
We belong in the CAA right now.

It is the right conference for us.

We are a mid-major basketball program AND ALWAYS WILL BE.

Anyone that thinks VCU belongs somewhere else is delusional at best.
.


With all due respect I think that is a loser attitude and nothing more than settling. Our Program was once a #2 seed in the NCAA tournament. Nationally ranked in pre-season polls close to the top ten! We should be striving to get back to those days not willing to settle and forever be a mid major. I hope the AD doesn't have that mindset.

I will say that the CAA does not seem to be the most pro-active conference, but instead of trying to leave why not try and help the CAA become a major player?
 
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