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Report: Hawai'i In Frame For Big West And Mountain West

Yesterday, the Big West announced it had lifted a more than five year old membership moratorium, a piece of news that piqued my interest. (Might Cal State Bakersfield might finally be getting a home? Might that Hawai'i rumor finally be coming true?)

Ferd Lewis of the Honolulu Star-Advertiser is reporting that my second thought may be answered with a "Yes."

Reports out of the 50th state indicate that the Warriors are indeed leaving the WAC for the Big West, but instead of football becoming an independent, that sport will play in the Mountain West. From a financial perspective, this is a win-win for most parties involved, though I'm not sure how financially-struggling California universities will react to frequent trips to the islands, unless there are some concessions involved. 

The press conference is supposed to happen at midnight ET, so I won't be up for it. You may want to head over to Mountain West Connection to see what Jeremy and company have to say about this in the meantime.

If Hawai'i leaves the WAC, the membership, after all of the previously announced comings-and-goings, will look like this.

Louisiana Tech
New Mexico State
San Jose State
UT San Antonio
Texas State
Utah State

The door remains open for Montana, and Seattle, fresh off a second straight win over Oregon State in hoops, may be back in the frame.

UPDATE: As Matt Sarzyniak tweets, the WAC will lose its autobid because it will drop to five core members upon Hawai'i's departure. (For more on those rules, read my post from August.)

For football, the Mountain West would look like this, provided TCU doesn't leave.

Air Force
Boise State
Colorado State
Fresno State
New Mexico
San Diego State