Dr. Blackwell's BLOG

Friday, December 28, 2012

After Bowl Win, UCF’s Future Faces Some Uncertainty

Filed under: UCF Sports — Dr. Christopher Blackwell @ 01:47


The UCF Knights (10-4; 6-2 C-USA) most likely played their last game as members of Conference USA in their 38-17 victory over Ball State (9-4; 6-2 MAC) in the 2012 Beef O’Brady’s Bowl. The win was the Knights second ever bowl game victory (the other was 2010’s Liberty Bowl win over Georgia). UCF will now move on as members of the Big East Conference and are scheduled to become full-members in the league in June 2013. However, the Big East Conference UCF thought it was joining has been severely depleted in the shifting alignments in the NCAA IA conferences, with West Virginia, TCU, Syracuse, Rutgers, Louisville, Notre Dame, and the 7 Catholic universities that were basketball-only members committing to join other conferences. All UCF can do now is wait to see where the final chips in the alignment process fall. But with the additions of East Carolina and Tulane (along with other several C-USA teams), it’s looking more and more like the Big East is not nearly as an attractive conference as originally perceived.

Another issue lingering for the Knights is an NCAA appeal that is scheduled to be heard in January. UCF received strict sanctions as a result of serious recruiting violations; and a several penalty believed to be harshly unfair was a 2012 post-season ban that would’ve prevented UCF from playing for a Conference Championship and bowl matchup. The University hired college sports attorneys and other legal experts to help in their appeal process. If UCF loses the appeal, then it will face a post-season ban in the last remaining season that the Big East qualifies for an automatic BCS bowl slot, which could be quite costly as it would allow seniors to transfer and result in a loss of millions of potential revenue. While the Knight Nation is proud of UCF’s successes in 2012, the uncertainty of the future for UCF’s athletics programs and the fate of its 2013 football post-season leave some serious concerns that only time will answer.

Photo Courtesy Orlando Sentinel.

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