I've heard and written about the potential of your school, whose enrollment has shot past 50,000. The campus has become its own city in a decent location - in northeast Orlando, about 30 tollbooths from Disney World, that cash-Hoovering tourist trap.
Your ancillary facilities take a backseat to nobody, you have a football coach once hired by Notre Dame and are paying him a million-plus a year. You have enough cache to hire coaches from league rivals.
So why aren't you guys already in the Big East? Or ACC?
Because you're wannabes. Gator/Seminole/Hurricane/Bull wannabes. Wannabes with a defensive tackle on "American Idol."
Yeah, you've beaten Marshall five straight times, and the Herd's coach was rewarded with a job at big brother USF. Yes, I said big brother - remember, the Bulls dropped 64 on you during your championship season. Really thin book: good UCF quarterbacks in the post-Daunte Culpepper era.
And since you're following the "if you can't beat 'em, hire 'em" school of hiring, you could use Marshall's Jeff Waggoner in baseball. In football, Big Brother USF took Skip Holtz first. Sorry 'bout that, but maybe you could make a run at Neil Callaway when you tire of George O'Leary.
And about that football stadium: When you have to renovate it in 20 years, mix in a little concrete.
Application denied. Next!
Houston and Texas-El Paso officials are no doubt dreaming about the Big Ten pillaging the Big 12, with the latter needing reinforcements. Both of you can keep dreaming.
You Cougars can invoke the football glory days of Andre Ware, etc., all you want, and you do have sustained success once again. But you're 12th banana in what is pound-for-pound one of America's worst sports cities, and your stadium is the C-USA equivalent of Akron's old Rubber Bowl.
(OK, that was completely unfair. Sorry.)
UTEP, I love you guys. The Sun Bowl is a setting few schools can rival. It's a rotten shame your football pedigree is comparable to that of Memphis.
And it's a shame El Paso is a long way from the rest of civilization. Miner fans, your options will be (a) staying put with the Texas schools in C-USA or (b) joining a BYU- and Utah-less Mountain West.
That brings me to Marshall, which isn't ready for prime time, either. But I think you Herd fans know that.
Five years of going sideways in football, at best, have dulled your program's edge. The good news: With a 7-6 season and a change at the top, better days are on the way. But you need to step up your game in every area.
As athletic director Mike Hamrick pointed out last week, you guys need to buy 19,000 season tickets not just this year, but every year - with or without WVU on the schedule. And you're going to have to start drawing crowds that start with a "3," against anybody.
Your donations are going to have to double and somebody must step up to get certain facilities built. Basketball must stay on the uptick after Donnie Jones left for, gasp, UCF.
Unless there is a bizarre movement to enormous BCS conferences that include everybody, you're going to have to hang on for the ride. But unlike the folks in the Memphis media, I refuse to forecast Armageddon.
You have a model, and it's in Greenville, N.C. Herd fans, go ahead and pat ECU on the back, wishing them well in BCS land. Terry Holland and all the Pirate faithful, you have earned it.
Just don't forget who loves ya. Give the Herd a home-and-home in football when you go.
Reach Doug Smock at 304-348-5130 or dougsm...@wvgazette.com.