Southern Conference could expand soon

The Southern Conference may be close to expansion as it tries to replace schools that are leaving for other conferences.

The Roanoke (Va.) Times reported Tuesday that VMI men's basketball Duggar Baucom told a Roanoke Valley Sports Club meeting of about 100 people Monday night that his school re-entering the Southern Conference is almost a done deal.

VMI was a SoCon member from 1924-2002 before departing for the Big South Conference.

SoCon officials recently visited the campuses of VMI and Atlantic Sun members East Tennessee State and Mercer, and signs point toward the three schools being accepted into the conference at its spring meeting May 28-31 in Hilton Head, S.C.

SoCon commissioner John Imarino has recommended the addition of the three schools to his conference's presidents. The SoCon is losing the College of Charleston to the Colonial Athletic Association later this year; Appalachian State and Georgia Southern, both FCS powers, to the Sun Belt Conference next year; and Davidson to the Atlantic 10 next year as well.