Independence is like a boa constrictor around the BYU athletics department's neck and they don't know why they can't breathe. 

Several years ago there was a stifiling event that affeted major college football in the state of Utah. The top two schools left the Mountain West Conference. Utah joined the Pac-12. Yes, Utah gets big pay-offs in athletic revenue but has never earned a title in basketball or football in that time.

BYU left at the same time trumpeting independence and a big ESPN contract. This eliminated a conference affiliation and rivalry which would make certain games important to the players and a springboard to big bowl games. We need a conference which would help in recruiting which has dwindled in recent years. For example, BYU was 4-9 last year. This year they start the same quarterback and lead back. Both struggled last year. BYU couldn't come up with new recruits to replace them.

Let's say you are a potential recruit to BYU. You tun in to a BYU game on ESPN with BYU playing a top 10 team and they get plastered, which happens often in these EPSN games for BYU. BYU doesn't play Top 10 ball. Those recruits say we'll get humiliated. I'd go to Glendale Jr. College before I'm going to BYU. 

We don't need the money. This money business is "fake news" if ever there were any. The LDS Church would never desert BYU football or basketball. Also, BYU basketball has never won a basketball title in the West Coast Athletic Conference since Independence. 

BYU athletics though they'd be welcomed into other conferences. Wrong! Now, we need to regroup an ask the Mountain West Conference to take them back. Yes, they have a poor monetary payback to the schools and the television is not that good. But, at least it is a conference and one that suits and did like BYU.

Lynn Merrill


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