USAir stands a good chance of liquidating. However UAL has some big names that stand to lose a lot if they were to liquidate. Bank One, Citi Group and a few other I can't remember. I don't think they would be allowed to Liquidate for the previuosly mentioned reason and also to the large effect on the US economy.
USAir is scrambling to come up with a viable businees plan that can return the carrier to profitablity. According to Aviation Week and Space Technology (AVWST) without USAir's pilots scope clause they can operate as many as 465 RJ's "while retaining as few as 279 mainline jets"
USAir thinks this is the way to profitability, maybe UAL will think the same.
ACAI already has 100 RJ's feeding UAL and believe me you can't pay pilots less than ACA already is. All UAL cares about is $revenue, not whether it is an ACA pilot bringing it in or a UAL pilot.
I agree with you that all UAL cares about right now is revenue whether it is UAL or more correctly any other option that cost less than the mainline. By this I mean UAL is trying to leverage ACA into a lower cost contract that will impact the bottom line at ACA. With both MESA and Mesaba bidding lower than ACA on the UAX agreement you might see UAL do some of the DL tricks with the ACA flights. IMO, MESA or MESABA may become players in the IAD and ORD hub system. The ACA ontime performance and operational issues along with the high cost (16c ASM) in the CRJ is driving UAL to look at other options other than ACA.
For those that think it can not happen just look at what DL has done in CVG, ATL and DFW with their express carriers. The cost to UAL for the services of ACA will come down either through agreement or withdrawl.
The positive outlook for ACA might be that DL will try to replace more CMR flying with ACA aircraft or ACA is forced to sell some aircraft to Air Wisc., Skywest , MESA or any other carrier that would not be contracting at the time.
The CRJ's are expensive to operate and the 16c ASM is going to be a major player in the withdrawl of Express service in some markets when UAL launches the internal LCC towards the end of spring. This is going to continue to be interesting times and any airline stock is going to be extremely volatile in the short term, with the exception of LUV.