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Syracuse agrees to pay Big East $7.5M for leaving

By Matt Norlander | College Basketball Writer

Syracuse and the Big East released a joint statement Monday morning saying the two will part ways July 1, 2013. Syracuse agreed to pay $7.5 million for leaving for the ACC a year earlier than expected.

A founding member of the conference in 1979, Syracuse had wanted to leave even earlier, but was contractually obligated to give the Big East 27 months' notice and pay a $5 million exit fee.

With the divorce date now final, it should be noted the Big East will keep custody of Rutgers and Seton Hall, meaning it's ultimately the loser in this one, as Syracuse gets to trot off to the ACC.

"This closes a chapter and opens a new one filled with exciting possibilities for the Big East's future," Big East interim commish Joe Bailey said in a statement, perhaps giving away the fact he's not actually checked which programs are actually coming into the league.

We still await word on what Pittsburgh -- which is also headed to the ACC -- will do. My guess: also gone after the upcoming season. Why would the ACC settle for a year with an odd number of teams? Pitt's still arranging its ducks at this point. CBSSports.com's Brett McMurphy has previously reported that Pitt athletic director Steve Pederson will not go above the $5 million buyout line.

Now that Syracuse has fished a little further into its pockets for a payout, what's Pitt to do? Seems the Big East has a bargaining chip there.

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