This summer, Memphis, Central Florida, Southern Methodist and Houston are going to the former Big East. Replacing them will be North Texas, Texas-San Antonio, Florida International, Louisiana Tech, Florida Atlantic, Middle Tennessee State, Old Dominion (football in 2014) and North Carolina-Charlotte (football in 2015).
In 2014, Tulane, East Carolina and Tulsa will leave, and WKU will enter.
If you're trying to add it up, C-USA will be 16 teams, 14 in football, for 2013-14. In 2014-15, that goes to 14 teams, 13 in football; in 2015-16, 14 teams will compete in football.
The changes will leave Rice as the league's only private school. All newcomers are public schools, many with enrollments larger than WKU's listed 21,124.
In Huntington, Marshall athletic director Mike Hamrick enthusiastically supported the addition. WKU will be the closest C-USA rival the Thundering Herd has had, a 281-mile separation similar to that of former Mid-American Conference rival Toledo.
Hamrick likely will push for Nashville as a future site for the C-USA basketball tournament, noting the proximity of WKU and Middle Tennessee. Banowsky won't mind spending more time addressing that and other relatively routine matters.
"I hope we get into a period of rest," he said. "We all need to breathe and catch up on things other than membership matters."
Reach Doug Smock at 304-348-5130, dougsm...@ wvgazette.com or follow him at twitter.com/dougsmock.