“We know we can compete, we belong here. No matter what anyone thinks, even our tone-deaf president. Maybe he doesn’t think we belong here, but I think we belong here,” Linehan said moments after earning MVP honors in the win.
There’s no real FBS fit for Idaho. The Vandals were left adrift after the WAC dropped football in 2012. Idaho played 2013 as an independent before joining the Sun Belt (Idaho is not in the Sun Belt). The Vandals have played at FBS level since 1996.
It’s also expensive to play FBS football. According to USA Today data, the Vandals ranked 131st in athletic department revenue at $19,950,964 for 2014-15, though $10,583,477 (53 percent) came from student subsidies.
Education cost will be the biggest challenge facing universities in the coming decades. Dropping FBS football at many schools can save students hundreds if not thousands of dollars per year. Idaho’s athletic subsidy is more than $900 per year per student.
Leaving FBS is rough on those involved with the Idaho program. Though, it’s a choice decision one would expect more schools to make.