Aug 10, 2023 - Sports

SDSU says it didn't try to form a new conference

San Diego State wide receiver Mekhi Shaw, number 83

San Diego State University football players Mekhi Shaw and Kenan Christon. Photo: Sam Wasson/Getty Images

Officials at San Diego State University have denied a CBS Sports report that the school led an attempt to create a new athletic conference before the effort failed Monday night.

Driving the news: The plan, allegedly spearheaded by SDSU's president, was to gather the remains of the Pac-12 and programs the Mountain West and American Athletic Conference to form a new, West Coast power conference.

  • A Mountain West source told CBS that idea died during a Monday night call with conference presidents, who decided to instead stick together.

Why it matters: SDSU has openly pursued moving to a "Power 5" conference, and the larger TV payouts that come with it. The collapse of the Pac-12 has left it with fewer options, but no fewer ambitions.

What they're saying: "SDSU has been actively involved in conference realignment discussions before and after the latest round of Pac-12 defections," said JD Wicker, the school's athletic director. "However, SDSU has not sought to create a new conference."

Catch up quick: The 100-year-old Pac-12 is down to just four schools after a series of defections: Oregon State, Washington State, Stanford and the University of California.

  • CBS reported the failure of SDSU's gambit might clear the way for Oregon State and Washington State to join the Mountain West.
  • The Mountain West's commissioner confirmed to the Union-Tribune that a reverse merger with the remains of the Pac-12 was still an option.

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