Idaho Vandals EUGENE, OR – SEPTEMBER 25: A “EM 7” sticker in memory of murdered University of Idaho Vandals’ cornerback Eric McMillian adorns a helmet during their game against the University of Oregon Ducks on September 25, 2004 at Autzen Stadium in Eugene, Oregon. (Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)

To stay up or drop down? It has been an ongoing discussion ever since the last bit of realignment left the Idaho Vandals without a home at the FBS level in a few years time.

Already in a rocky affiliate membership with the Sun Belt Conference alongside New Mexico State, the two biggest outliers were dropped by the conference in a vote earlier this year and will exit the conference following the 2017 season.

That move left the Vandals in one of the toughest spots in the country. It hasn’t been a bastion of success at the FBS level and its location in the middle of nowhere Moscow, Idaho isn’t exactly the thing conferences are looking for in realignment once again.

So, it should come as no surprise that Football Scoop is reporting that Idaho will drop down to the FCS level following its final year at the FBS level in 2017.

However, the loss of FBS football may be the best thing for the program. Idaho was once a member of the Big Sky conference, playing football and other sports there from 1965-95.

Much of the speculation on the move down a level centers on bringing football back to the conference it competes in at every other sport — the aforementioned Big Sky.

The move down to the Big Sky wouldn’t exactly be the worst thing, as the conference is considered one of the most competitive at that level. Schools like Eastern Washington, Idaho State, and Montana have all won national championships.

It isn’t as if the Vandals are devoid of history, tradition, or other factors that would help them in getting a conference affiliation at the next level either.

After all, this is a program that began playing football back in 1893 and has nine Big Sky championships of their own. However, life in modern big-time college football as an outlier with a small budget to work with meant economics ruled over the wishes of still being a member of the FBS world.

The Vandals will make the announcement of their impending move to the FCS level tomorrow per Football Scoop’s sources.

[Football Scoop]

About Andrew Coppens

Andy is a contributor to The Comeback as well as Publisher of Big Ten site talking10. He also is a member of the FWAA and has been covering college sports since 2011. Andy is an avid soccer fan and runs the Celtic FC site The Celtic Bhoys. If he's not writing about sports, you can find him enjoying them in front of the TV with a good beer!