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Loyola Chicago joining A10


JMM28
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1 hour ago, brianstl said:

I think this move was done to try to keep SLU and Dayton happy.  The Chicago metro has the most SLU and Dayton alumni outside of their home metros. This is big for SLU and Dayton both for athletic recruiting purposes and for student recruiting purposes.  The A10 with a solid Chicago basketball program is a much better conference for the Billikens.

It's time the A10 took care of its Midwestern Islands.  This is an excellent move for Loyola, and for SLU and Dayton.  But it's also a good move for the rest of the A10, especially the schools in the big Northeast cities.  The A10 had become too southern branch centric.

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16 minutes ago, brianstl said:

Temple is a bad choice, but adding another team in Philly isn't what I was hoping for.  

Rothstein has been pushing a narrative that the A10 needs Temple and Temple needs the A10.  I just don't see it.

Temple was one of the best basketball programs in the A10 back in the day, but the level of their program has fallen off.  A10 already has the Philly presence.  Temple isn't getting rid of football.  The only way it would make any sense would be if LaSalle dropped out of the A10 and Temple decided football wasn't a priority.  Those aren't likely happening.

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People who are saying Loyola could fall back to earth without Porter or that Loyola hasn’t done enough to warrant addition are being way too shortsighted. Conference realignment is not about what schools have done in the past, the focus should be on what they will do going forward. The A-10 version of Loyola is a good college basketball program. They have facilities, investment and recruiting potential. There is no reason why Loyola can’t be a perennial top 50-100 program going forward (and pointing to the fact that they haven’t done that historically is basically worthless at this point)

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1 minute ago, NH said:

People who are saying Loyola could fall back to earth without Porter or that Loyola hasn’t done enough to warrant addition are being way too shortsighted. Conference realignment is not about what schools have done in the past, the focus should be on what they will do going forward. The A-10 version of Loyola is a good college basketball program. They have facilities, investment and recruiting potential. There is no reason why Loyola can’t be a perennial top 50-100 program going forward (and pointing to the fact that they haven’t done that historically is basically worthless at this point)

I understand what you’re saying, and agree it’s part of the equation. But to say their past is meaningless just doesn’t paint the whole picture. 
 

Loyola has been very successful the last 4 years in large part due to Porter Moser and Cameron Krutwig. Before Krutwig, they hadn’t sniffed an NCAA tournament in 30+ years, consistently played in front of less than 1000 fans, and were eighteenth fiddle in Chicago. There’s not a real track record of success at this point more than a great recruit and MVC level recruiting alongside that with some solid coaching thrown in.  
 

The A10 is buying peak Loyola. This is somewhere between adding VCU and adding George Mason. 

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20 minutes ago, JMM28 said:

The A10 is buying peak Loyola. This is somewhere between adding VCU and adding George Mason. 

I admit I am more in the skeptical camp of adding Loyola.  I like the geography, but the A-10 is now the home of the three mid-majors that made surprise Final Four runs.  VCU has panned out.  But George Mason soured me a little on this strategy.

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10 minutes ago, SluSignGuy said:

I admit I am more in the skeptical camp of adding Loyola.  I like the geography, but the A-10 is now the home of the three mid-majors that made surprise Final Four runs.  VCU has panned out.  But George Mason soured me a little on this strategy.

They are without Krutwig and Porter this year and have started STRONG.  The A-10 just got the best team in the Chicago market.  Remember this is all about $$$ and TV eyes.

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25 minutes ago, JMM28 said:

I understand what you’re saying, and agree it’s part of the equation. But to say their past is meaningless just doesn’t paint the whole picture. 
 

Loyola has been very successful the last 4 years in large part due to Porter Moser and Cameron Krutwig. Before Krutwig, they hadn’t sniffed an NCAA tournament in 30+ years, consistently played in front of less than 1000 fans, and were eighteenth fiddle in Chicago. There’s not a real track record of success at this point more than a great recruit and MVC level recruiting alongside that with some solid coaching thrown in.  
 

The A10 is buying peak Loyola. This is somewhere between adding VCU and adding George Mason. 

What is your concern about Loyola specifically? Certainly we have to acknowledge that they no longer have Porter Moser. But they are already recruiting at an A-10 level (recently beat SLU for a recruit we wanted), they are playing at an A-10 level, and they have A10 level facilities. I would expect them to improve in terms of both recruiting and investment now that they are in a better conference.

Of course we’re “buying” peak Loyola; I would much rather add a program thats at its recent peak than one that isn’t. It’s not like it costs the A-10 more to add Loyola now than it would if they were coming off a worse season. I don’t really care about what they did when they weren’t in the A-10. I care about what they will do in the A-10. I don’t really care about their final four appearance in the same way that I don’t care about the years they were at the bottom of the MVC. Those are all sunk costs at this point. 

@SluSignGuy referenced the Mason addition souring him on adding a hot kid-major and I don’t disagree. But if you look at how Loyola is positioned competitively going forward, they are probably closer to VCU than Mason.

I want programs that are invested in basketball. Loyola has demonstrated in the past 5 years or so that they’ve stepped up their investment to a level that should translate to success at the A-10 level. 

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8 minutes ago, SluSignGuy said:

I admit I am more in the skeptical camp of adding Loyola.  I like the geography, but the A-10 is now the home of the three mid-majors that made surprise Final Four runs.  VCU has panned out.  But George Mason soured me a little on this strategy.

There's no such thing as adding a team to the conference that brings no risk.  Loyola has beefed up their facilities and budget.  They replaced Moser with his passionate young assistant, a former D-1 player from a basketball family.  They've secured commitments from two 2022 kids we were also recruiting.  If Loyola falls off, it won't be for lack of trying.

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3 hours ago, NH said:

@SluSignGuy referenced the Mason addition souring him on adding a hot kid-major and I don’t disagree. But if you look at how Loyola is positioned competitively going forward, they are probably closer to VCU than Mason.

 

My concern with Loyola is that they aren't just a "coach program", which would be a concern, but they are also a single player program - Krutwig. 

Their basketball budget is in the top of MVC but would be average or below for the A10 - while they are located in a market with a high cost of doing business. They were paying Porter a hair over a million a year which is strong for the MVC but ok-ish for the A10. Valentine is probably making half of that at this point. 

Speaking of Valentine, he is a 29 year old in his first year as a head coach. He has a lot of traits that could make him successful, but he also is completely unproven. His staff is not good and pretty young. That program could shipwreck quickly after this year when they lose their returning 5th year guys. 

VCU had a decade-plus of sustained success through 3 different coaches. They lost Capel to Oklahoma, hired Grant, he moved up to Alabama, then hired Shaka who took them to a final 4 and another 2nd round appearance the following year. VCU was as much of a slam dunk addition in 2012 as any program has ever been for any conference. 

George Mason was probably a classic example of a coach's program. Larranaga left, Hewitt was able to sustain with Larranaga guys, and they slipped back to the 'meh' they had always been - despite committing upper half of the A10 dollars to basketball. 

I don't think Loyola winds up a Fordham level program, but I also don't think they wind up as any sort of great addition. They will revert more towards their historic mean which puts them closer to the bottom half of the A10 than the top half. 

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9 minutes ago, JMM28 said:

My concern with Loyola is that they aren't just a "coach program", which would be a concern, but they are also a single player program - Krutwig. 

Their basketball budget is in the top of MVC but would be average or below for the A10 - while they are located in a market with a high cost of doing business. They were paying Porter a hair over a million a year which is strong for the MVC but ok-ish for the A10. Valentine is probably making half of that at this point. 

Speaking of Valentine, he is a 29 year old in his first year as a head coach. He has a lot of traits that could make him successful, but he also is completely unproven. His staff is not good and pretty young. That program could shipwreck quickly after this year when they lose their returning 5th year guys. 

VCU had a decade-plus of sustained success through 3 different coaches. They lost Capel to Oklahoma, hired Grant, he moved up to Alabama, then hired Shaka who took them to a final 4 and another 2nd round appearance the following year. VCU was as much of a slam dunk addition in 2012 as any program has ever been for any conference. 

George Mason was probably a classic example of a coach's program. Larranaga left, Hewitt was able to sustain with Larranaga guys, and they slipped back to the 'meh' they had always been - despite committing upper half of the A10 dollars to basketball. 

I don't think Loyola winds up a Fordham level program, but I also don't think they wind up as any sort of great addition. They will revert more towards their historic mean which puts them closer to the bottom half of the A10 than the top half. 

I don't think Loyola is a completely bullet-proof addition (Moser leaving, fan support could be better, etc.), but they are about as good as the A-10 could have gotten. Saying that they will "revert to their historic mean" is exactly what I think is short-sighted. They spend more, recruit better, and have better facilities than they did at their "historic mean". As of today they also are in a better conference. In many ways, there is almost no way they perform at their historic mean because all of the variables that underlie that history have changed.

Loyola made the final four with Krutwig playing 23 minutes a game and their 5th leading scorer, so I have trouble buying that he's the only reason for the success of that team. I know for a fact that Loyola's basketball budget would be above average in the A-10 (despite the fact that it wasn't when the 2019 DoE data came out). It will increase as their travel costs increase in the A-10.  

Loyola has a higher commitment to basketball than George Mason has had during its A-10 tenure in terms of facilities and coaching budget. They were recruiting at a much better level in the MVC than Mason was in its prior conference. That's why I feel comfortable saying Loyola is better positioned for future success now than Mason was at the time they were added. I agree with you that it doesn't get more surefire than VCU was at the time.

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5 hours ago, JMM28 said:

My concern with Loyola is that they aren't just a "coach program", which would be a concern, but they are also a single player program - Krutwig. 

Their basketball budget is in the top of MVC but would be average or below for the A10 - while they are located in a market with a high cost of doing business. They were paying Porter a hair over a million a year which is strong for the MVC but ok-ish for the A10. Valentine is probably making half of that at this point. 

Speaking of Valentine, he is a 29 year old in his first year as a head coach. He has a lot of traits that could make him successful, but he also is completely unproven. His staff is not good and pretty young. That program could shipwreck quickly after this year when they lose their returning 5th year guys. 

VCU had a decade-plus of sustained success through 3 different coaches. They lost Capel to Oklahoma, hired Grant, he moved up to Alabama, then hired Shaka who took them to a final 4 and another 2nd round appearance the following year. VCU was as much of a slam dunk addition in 2012 as any program has ever been for any conference. 

George Mason was probably a classic example of a coach's program. Larranaga left, Hewitt was able to sustain with Larranaga guys, and they slipped back to the 'meh' they had always been - despite committing upper half of the A10 dollars to basketball. 

I don't think Loyola winds up a Fordham level program, but I also don't think they wind up as any sort of great addition. They will revert more towards their historic mean which puts them closer to the bottom half of the A10 than the top half. 

i think the best happening of getting loyola is a step toward geographic balance for the conference.   if they now pick up another midwest team that would be great.   second while loyola isnt yet any sort of media darling, still the fact they are located in chicago has to be a huge positive for the league.   i see nothing but positive for the A10 with this pickup.   Sure it would have been awesome if instead of loyola the league got notre dame.   or instead of the maybe wichita state they get kansas, but surely even you can see the likes of big time blue blood names like that coming down to the A10 isnt likely to happen.  brenda took what she could get and expanded the footprint.   i have been her biggest detractor, but imo give credit when it's due and loyola in my mind is a great pickup for the atlantic 10

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14 hours ago, The Valley Sucks said:

I think this means the A10 knows the league is going to have defections soon. I'm not sure how I feel about this. While its nice to have the Ramblers close by, they could easily fall back without Porter there. Hell they weren't even on the radio in Chicago the year they went to the final 4. People care more about the big 10 in Chicago. Our conference is already filled with also rans.

Much to the chagrin of Bill from Schaumburg who calls in from the Kennedy on 670 “The Score.” 
 

“long time listener, first time caller.”

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Smart, proactive move by the A10.  Departures from the league may not be imminent as Matt Norlander reported. But aside from SLU/Dayton’s BE aspirations, there is real potential to lose UMass or LaSalle at some point as Dana O’Neil pointed out in her piece.

Better to add now than be reacting later.

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