The Gonzaga Bulldogs very well could be playing in the Mountain West Conference sooner than later, according to a new article from CBS Sports.
The Zags are operating on a self-imposed deadline of making their decision to jump from the West Coast Conference to the Mountain West Conference, where the Zags would become the 12th basketball playing member of the conference.
“We’re going to be closing on a window that is going to be making it difficult,” Roth said. “I think we’re into that crunch period for sure if we’re going to try to get it done for the fall of 2018. At the same time, we’re not going to rush the decision because of timing.”
Of course, nothing is a done deal, but the talks are as serious as they can get without giving a 100 percent firm yes. According to CBS Sports, the Zags hired the same consultant Wichita State used prior to shifting allegiances to the AAC.
There are still plenty of details to pour over. The jump to the MWC is estimated to only net Gonzaga approximately $375,000 per season, a significant chunk of change but not too much in the grand scheme of things.
Then there is the genetic makeup of the schools. The WCC is primarily made up of small, faith-based institutions. The MWC is anything but that.
Roth has apparently admitted to holding discussions with other conferences, most likely the AAC or the Big East. However, the proximity distance between Spokane and every other potential conference partner there has always been a hurdle—hence the appeal of the MWC.
Any move into the MWC would need to be approved by the other schools, so the time is ticking for the Zags to make their decision, which does not appear to be an issue for Gonzaga AD Mike Roth, as he told the Spokesman Review.
“Craig (Thompson) has done a lot of work recently trying to nail some things down. We’ve done a lot of due diligence, and we need to do more,” Roth said. “One thing we’ve been focusing on is to make the right decision and not worry about the time frame.”