Now, I'm not calling out Florida State, Maryland, or anyone else involved in recent talk. My question is why independence has not become a bigger move. 30 years ago, many football programs enjoyed this status. While basketball and other sports require it for entrance into the NCAA tournament (this may soon be the case with football as well with a 4 team BCS championship), today a program can still largely succeed as an independent. Further, for all the belly-aching about one's value in a conference or the amount of money a program should be bringing in from media contracts, one should test their value. If the ACC must split its earnings 12 (soon to be 14 ways), theoretically there is a value for each team that is more or less than the conference total divided by 14.
Scheduling may be difficult, but if your program is so valuable, many will want to schedule home and away series with you in order to sell out, and further TV channels will want to cover your games. Some may argue that the rivalries and watching the conference champion shake out may add value, but if you're a household name, many opposing fans are going to watch your game with interest when you come to town. There are several options: you could set up your own station like a longhorn network, or simply try to sell your rights for all games to ESPN or NBC.
You could largely pick who and where you wanted to play if you were valuable enough (again not picking on florida state, but conceivably there are a number of teams in the Greater Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana region at just a stones throw away).
My point is, if you're unhappy, test your worth. Find out how much you can pull for contracts, and get to work on scheduling regional teams in theory you create a schedule that from year to year where you control the teams you want to play.
I'd be curious to see the result from a big state university trying to go independent - maybe even boise? Not the best situation for SU right now, trying to rebuild its program, fighting for fan allegiance and viewership. I'd pay for a special cable channel to watch all their sports, not sure how profitable that one's gonna be.
A Few other points:
1. It appears Tyler Provo (younger brother of Nick Provo) may have committed to SU today. This is a big get as reportedly he has had a number of respectable offers.
2. Not sure if anyone's been over to clemson's sbnation site, but there's some heavy duty football logistics going on on that website. I'm don't think much of clemson, a program that thinks they are much more relevant than I ever have, but much respect for the football talk and analysis going on there. http://www.shakinthesouthland.com/
3. Way to go state school of new jersey. you should give up http://www.teamspeedkills.com/2012/5/15/3021940/chart-revenues-profits-college-athletics?tw_p=twt