The eight schools that are leaving the Western Athletic Conference finally picked a name for their new conference. The new NCAA Division I-A league is called the Mountain West Conference.
"The Mountain West Conference name ... brings to mind the geographic setting of our conference," said Colorado State University president Albert C. Yates, the president and treasurer of the new conference.
The schools which decided last summer they were leaving the WAC to launch the Mountain West are Colorado State, Air Force, Brigham Young, UNLV, New Mexico, San Diego State, Utah and Wyoming. They cited the loss of traditional rivalries, rising travel costs and insufficient revenue growth as reasons for leaving the country's only 16-school conference.
The new conference officially begins July 1, 1999.
Craig Thompson, commissioner of the Sun Belt Conference, last week was named to lead the new league.
The MWC has not selected its headquarters, but the prospective sites reportedly have been narrowed to Las Vegas and Colorado Springs.
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