Prestige is everything in sports. Don’t believe me? There was a time a few years ago when North Carolina started 2-4 in college basketball and they were still ranked. The SEC could literally go 0-14 in Week One of the season and there would still be six teams ranked in the Top 25. Prestige matters and as the NIL and transfer portal kick off, every team in the nation is going to be looking on how to use their prestige to stay relevant and important in this changing landscape.
How this helps the AAC
BYU would immediately become a top three team in the conference. Whether their win/loss record says that to be true or not, BYU brings some history and prestige. People know who BYU is and it would help the AAC gain that P6 title that they currently claim, however don’t own by most P5 viewpoints.
If the AAC were to bring in another two teams to make 14 AAC schools (Football), brining in Boise State and another western school would make the conference a true top tier conference. Just imagine these divisions:
West: BYU, Boise State, Tulsa, Houston, Southern Methodist, Cincinnati and San Diego State/Utah State/Colorado State
East: Central Florida, Memphis, Navy, South Florida, Tulane, East Carolina, and Temple
How this helps BYU
Being in a conference would give BYU a much easier path to the Playoff. Getting to the Playoff would give the team prestige. Also, with an easier schedule (not playing four P5’s to start off the season), the Cougars could find themselves regularly ranked in October and November meaning that games against UCF, Memphis, Cincinnati or Boise State could be great ranked matchups that would get national attention.
Finally, it would give BYU something to really play for. Right now, if BYU loses two games in a season, they already know their postseason fate. In the AAC, even if the Cougars lose a few games and are out of the running for a Conference Championship, they will still by fighting for a better bowl game.