Blog Entry

East Carolina interest in Big East nothing new

Posted on: September 22, 2011 1:06 pm
 
Posted by Jerry Hinnen

Wasting no time attempting to get their foot in the door left open by Pitt and Syracuse, East Carolina announced Wednesday they had applied for membership in the Big East. From a statement by ECU athletic director Terry Holland:
"East Carolina University will always maintain a proactive approach in regards to positioning itself for future success, and the fluidity of current conference realignment possibilities is no exception."

"While we have formalized our interest in Big East Conference membership as a viable option, ECU will remain focused on competing at the highest level through the efforts of Conference USA."
Openly announcing that you've applied to a different conference is a curious definition of "remaining focused" on succeeding in Conference USA, we'd argue, and when we say "openly" we mean it. Contrast the continued (open) secrecy of, say, West Virginia's attempt to join the ACC or SEC with e-mailing 50 different media members the news of your application before the Big East has even had a chance to give it a serious thought -- it arrived the same day ECU announced they'd put it in the mail -- and you'll see how badly the Pirates want to be taken as a serious candidate for Big East expansion.

But this is nothing new for the Greenville, N.C. school. Back in 2008, the Hartford Courant reported that ECU officials would be willing to make a stunning number of concessions if the Big East would give them their big break at the BCS level.

Among the offers allegedly on the table: that ECU would forgo entirely their share of Big East revenue on a "trial basis," so that conference revenues for the res tof the league remained constant; forgoing any shared BCS bowl revenue until the Pirates made a BCS bowl themselves; provide its own television contract so as not to interfere with the league's existing deal; guaranteeing the sale of 2,500 tickets to their Big East away games; and possibly more.

"We would agree to all of that and others," a "prominent ECU supporter" told the Courant at the time. "Our partnership could be described as a 'hand-in' partnership rather than a 'hand-out' partnership. We wouldn't be asking for anything except the opportunity to prove ourselves as good and productive partners of the eight institutions playing Division I-A football."

Would the Pirates still be as desperate today? With the Big East in a position of lesser strength and stability, then-Pirate head coach Skip Holtz now at South Florida, and the economy making finances more tricky for football programs outside the BCS, it seems far less likely ECU administrators would be willing to make quite that big a gamble on a league with so many question marks still to be answered.

But it nonetheless goes to show that Wednesday's application announcement isn't the first time the Pirates have attempted to beat down the Big East's door. And if the conference once again passes over the Pirates (this time in favor of teams like Navy and Air Force), expect ECU to try again whenever the opportunity presents itself again.

For more on Conference Realignment 2011, follow our RapidReports on the subject by clicking here.

Comments

Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 19, 2011 3:23 am
 

East Carolina interest in Big East nothing new

Point sizable,a usual thing wonder writing a comment.Remarkably necessary to person who is responsible for only checking out an resouces regarding it segment.It's truly help your kids me to.



Since: Sep 22, 2011
Posted on: September 23, 2011 10:03 pm
 

East Carolina interest in Big East nothing new

In my honest opinion, ECU really hasn't thought this one out.  Their approach shouldn't be that of a butt-kisser (which effectively is how this article describes them), it should be the same as Navy, stating that they are interested but want to see some conference stability first before taking the plunge.  This could seriously backfire on ECU if the Big East accepts them and ECU makes all these concessions and then the Big East has more teams defect and ends the conference.  That would cause ECU to lose a bunch of money that they cannot afford to lose and be stuck without a conference.  Unlike Navy ECU couldn't just go back to being an independent.  I think ECU is a great team overall and has a lot of potential but a sudden "we will join the Big East at any cost" when we don't even know if there will be a Big East in a couple of years, is just not smart planning.  I could see C-USA easily filling ECU's spot with either Troy or Florida International from the Sunbelt if ECU defects, which means that if ECU joins the Big East and disbands they could well end up back in the Sunbelt and having to start over again from scratch.  Staying in C-USA and waiting until the dust settles in the Big East is much better than jumping into the Big East head first when it has just lost two of it's programs (one of which is a founding member) and 2-3 more are still not completely committed to the conference. 



Since: Sep 27, 2006
Posted on: September 23, 2011 7:44 pm
 

East Carolina interest in Big East nothing new

Among the offers allegedly on the table: that ECU would forgo entirely their share of Big East revenue on a "trial basis," so that conference revenues for the res tof the league remained constant; forgoing any shared BCS bowl revenue until the Pirates made a BCS bowl themselves; provide its own television contract so as not to interfere with the league's existing deal; guaranteeing the sale of 2,500 tickets to their Big East away games; and possibly more.
Bend over and assume the position, we're about to get screwed. 



Since: Jul 2, 2009
Posted on: September 23, 2011 5:31 pm
 

East Carolina interest in Big East nothing new

Having been an 18 year season ticket holder with WVU Mountaineers before I moved out West, I miss playing the likes of Penn State, BC, Va Tech, Miami, and now Pitt and Syracuse.  However, I truly welcome East Carolina.  They always had some of the classiest fans I've ever met, and they would be very good for the Big East.  Welcome.



Since: Sep 5, 2011
Posted on: September 23, 2011 3:47 pm
 

East Carolina interest in Big East nothing new

The BE has stalled for sooo long.  Have heard for years that the BE is considering...East Varolina, Navy, UCF, etc. 

So what did the BE commission say after Pitt & 'Cuse said they were leaving?  "We need to make the right decision, not a hurry-up decision."

I say its time to make a decision.  Not wait till h*77 freezes over before doing something.

Navy has already said they are not interested in applying until AFTER the BE proves its stable.

It is time to invite someone who is willing to join - NOW. Accept ECU. 

At least ECU appears willing to work with the BE conference.  Not like UConn which showed their support at the meeting in New York by - not attending.




Since: Dec 4, 2007
Posted on: September 23, 2011 2:05 pm
 

East Carolina interest in Big East nothing new

The Big East should get off the stick and accept East Carolina now! As a Rutgers/Big East fan the conference needs to replace Syracuse/Pitt ASAP for the football conference.  There is enough strength in basketball without the two who bailed; but from a football standpoint ECU is, in my opinion, a "wash" with either of those two squads.  Another benefit is opening up exposure/potential recruiting to another area.



Since: Oct 30, 2006
Posted on: September 23, 2011 12:35 pm
 

East Carolina interest in Big East nothing new



Other than Wisconsin, who does the Big1G have? Remove Oregon & Stanford(this year) and only USC remains. Big 12 has Oklahoma & Texas as viable perennial contenders, what's there after that?

SEC has several programs that have a shot on a cyclical basis, after that, all these conferences are more or less 2 or 3 teams that rule... the rest are window dressing.

When you go to the bottom of each conference, they're dogs everywhere.



Since: Sep 20, 2009
Posted on: September 22, 2011 9:38 pm
 

East Carolina interest in Big East nothing new

East Carolina has a very BIG fan base that travels well. When they say they will buy 2500 tickets for away games that is no joke thery can sell them. They are on par with any Big East team in football. They are in easy travel distance from Big East schools. Some draw backs are ECU is no where near ready in basketball they also except partial qualifiers. The TV market is smal ( depends if the Raleigh Durham market is in the research or not) As good as ECU has been with wins over Boise St, Va Tech they are not a nationally recognized team



Since: Oct 7, 2007
Posted on: September 22, 2011 5:02 pm
 

East Carolina interest in Big East nothing new

I think ECU would be a great member (full disclosure: I'm a USF fan).  I can understand wanting Navy...not sure Air Force fits but only because of the geographic separation.

Mind you, I'd also like to see them invite UCF and Memphis.  The BE loses Pitt and Syracuse but gain TCU...so it's a net loss of one to seven teams.  They'd need 12 I should think to be a realistic AQ conference.  ECU, Navy, Air Force, UCF and Memphis would bring the conference to 12.

Then invite Notre Dame and when they say no, eject them from the rest of Big East sports as well.  Let the Big X deal with their crap. 



Since: Mar 17, 2009
Posted on: September 22, 2011 3:47 pm
 

East Carolina interest in Big East nothing new

Mistweaver-good luck to you guys.I know you will do just fine in the Big East.



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