Texas State Updates: Joining the WAC

Answers about Texas State’s
move to the WAC

So what exactly does it mean for Texas State to join the Western Athletic Conference?

The most significant change is in football

Schools in the WAC participate in the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision, known as Division I-A before 2006. Schools in Texas State’s current conference, the Southland Conference, play in the Football Championship Subdivision, previously known as Division I-AA.

Teams in the Football Championship Subdivision compete for one of 16 spots in a postseason tournament, which leads to a national champion.

Teams in the Football Bowl Subdivision play for a spot in one of 35 bowl games. They become eligible for bowl games by winning at least six games and not having a losing record in the process. The top 10 teams in the Bowl Championship Series participate in the major bowl games, with the top two teams playing for the BCS national championship.

Payouts for participation in bowl games, which can reach millions of dollars, are divided equally among the athletic programs in the schools’ conferences.


Moving to the FBS means Texas State now will offer 85 football scholarships, rather than the current 63. The program cannot sign more than 25 new student-athletes per academic year.

To stay in compliance with federal regulations, spending on women’s sports teams must increase by an equivalent amount.

Other sports

No differentiation like the FCS/FBS exists in other NCAA sports. The only change for Texas State’s other athletic teams will be a different set of conference opponents.

New conference

Barring further changes, the Western Athletic Conference will have nine members when Texas State, UTSA and the University of Denver join on July 1, 2012:

Institution Enrollment
Texas State University-San Marcos
San Marcos
University homepage, Athletics homepage
University of Texas at San Antonio
San Antonio
University homepage, Athletics homepage
New Mexico State University
Las Cruces, N.M.
Univesrity homepage, Athletics homepage
San Jose State University
San Jose, Calif.
University homepage, Athletics homepage
Utah State University
Logan, Utah
University homepage, Athletics homepage
University of Hawai’i Manoa
Honolulu, Hawai’i
University homepage, Athletics homepage
University of Idaho
Moscow, Idaho
University homepage, Athletics homepage
Louisiana Tech University
Ruston, La.
University homepage, Athletics homepage
University of Denver
Denver, Colo.
University homepage, Athletics homepage

The University of Denver, which does not play football, is the only private school.

The Western Athletic Conference was founded in 1962 and crowns team and individual champions in 19 sports:

Men’s sports Women’s sports
Cross country
Indoor track and field
Outdoor track and field
Cross country
Swimming and diving
Indoor track and field
Outdoor track and field


The WAC has an agreement with ESPN to carry football and basketball. The contract includes more than 300 regular-season contests and 45 championship events between 2008 and 2017.

The conference also has streaming coverage, at wac.tv, of conference championships in volleyball, soccer, swimming and diving, basketball, gymnastics, softball and baseball.

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