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Sun Belt: App State players, future rivals respond

Look at the APP side walkway

Spot the guitar. Outstanding photo.

The coach speaks. “There’s a lot of reasons that (we’re) ready for FBS.”

Mountaineers take loss of playoffs pretty hard.

The players, while not exactly taking the news in stride, say they accept it.

Jackson said: “It’s tough not being able to lead this team to the playoffs, but I support the direction this university is going. We’re going to play this year just like it’s a regular year. We’re going to try to go undefeated. That’s the goal.”

Offensive tackle Kendall Lamm said: “We still have some tough teams in the SoCon, so it’s going to be one nice ride one last time.”

Troy, South Alabama love their new rivals.

Troy AD John Hartwell said. “Somebody without knowledge may say you’re grasping or settling to bring up a couple of FCS schools, but if you delve and look into it, look at the history and success of those two institutions, especially as it relates to football, it’s very rich.

Sounds great, then he steps in it with this comment – “Appalachian State has had victories over the East Carolinas and N.C. States.” Uhhhhh…..

Karl Benson talks Sun Belt Conference. Commish on Tim Brando show.

Coach Capel’s thoughts. “I think we’re going to be able to compete in that level, in that league.”

Meanwhile, in the SoCon. “The 2014 league football schedule was completed earlier this month, just in time for App State and Georgia Southern to confirm their long-speculated departures from the league.”

From lil conference to a big ‘un. “In the SoCon, six of the Mountaineers’ 11 opponents were no more than a three-hour drive away. In the Sun Belt, the shortest drive is 5½ hours to Atlanta. The average SoCon road trip: 220 miles. The Sun Belt: 665.”

Cold water. “When the Mountaineers begin play in the Sun Belt in 2014, its normal freshman class and the 22 extra scholarships will be all new players, about half the squad. Those numbers above suggest the chances of a slow transition to Division I.”

And some more. “Louisiana Tech (first FBS season in 1989) has had 11 winning seasons in the 24 — which included six as an independent — since moving up, and Louisiana-Monroe (1994) had its first last season.”

Burn. “Now, you’ve got App State, who brings in 26,000 for every home game. You’ve got Georgia Southern, who is one of the top (NCAA) Division I-AA programs ever. And you’re losing Florida International, who plays in front of 11 people.”

Quick glance through the Sun Belt. Guess which school “Jimmy Nuetron” creator attended.

‘Nooga considered Sun Belt. “Interim athletic director Laura Herron said UTC was contacted by the Sun Belt two months ago and was asked about UTC’s interest.”

Western Kentucky pretty much gone. “ESPN reported Tuesday Tulsa will announce it’s leaving C-USA for the old Big East Conference. Big East sources told ESPN Tulsa’s move is “imminent.” That leaves an open C-USA spot that multiple outlets have reported will be filled by WKU.”

And when WKU leaves. “James Madison has emerged as the top candidate to replace them in the Sun Belt.”

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