Blog Entry

Big East plotting football, hoops divisions

Posted on: October 11, 2011 1:50 pm

Officials from what’s left of the Big East’s dwindling football membership had another conference call on Tuesday morning and there remains no specific timetable on adding UCF, but “appears an invitation is forthcoming” for the Knights, the league’s No. 1 target.

The presidents, chancellors and athletic directors continued to discuss potential expansion candidates. Among those mentioned were UCF, Air Force, Navy, Temple, Houston, SMU and Boise State, a league source told

While Commissioner John Marinatto said in a statement Monday the league would consider a model with 12 football members, part of Tuesday’s call was discussing the possibility of splitting the football and basketball conference into divisions, once the football side is replenished.

Navy, Air Force and Boise State are being considered as football members only, while UCF, Temple, Houston and SMU are at the top of the list as all-sports members so it’s unknown right now how large the basketball membership could grow.

The Newark Star-Ledger reported one proposed alignment discussed at Tuesday’s meeting consisted of Rutgers, UConn, South Florida, UCF, Temple and Navy in an East Division with West Virginia, Louisville, Cincinnati, Air Force, SMU and Houston in a West Division.

However, there remains the very real possibility Louisville and West Virginia may not be in the league and bound for the Big 12 if Missouri leaves for the SEC or the Big 12 expands to 12 teams.

What make Temple, SMU and Houston attractive to the Big East, one source said, is their respective television markets. Philadelphia (Temple) is the nation’s No. 4 market, Dallas (SMU) is No. 5 and Houston is No. 10.

Beyond Navy, Air Force and UCF, a league source said “no one team is definitely next” as an expansion candidate.

There also appears to be conflicting opinions on pursuing Boise State. Some league members support adding Boise State because of the Broncos’ recent success, which would help the league with its future BCS status. However, others believe Boise State, located nearly 700 miles west of Air Force and nearly 2,200 miles from Tampa/USF, is simply too far to consider.

Boise State president Bob Kustra said in a statement Monday that the Broncos “are looking forward to their inaugural season” in the Mountain West Conference and he “has great confidence in the future direction of the Mountain West.”

“While we are certainly flattered to be mentioned in connection with other conferences and we hold those leagues in high regard, our current focus is on continuing to build the outstanding athletic programs that have helped make Boise State a popular and compelling national brand," Kustra said.

“The landscape of college athletics is exceptionally fluid, and we are continuing to monitor the situation. We are confident that Boise State will be well positioned for future success, and we will evaluate our status with the best interests of the entire university in mind. Boise State’s athletic achievements, academic and research successes, popularity, and vision for future growth make the university an extremely valuable conference partner.”

A league source also told that Army is no longer being considered as a candidate by the Big East. “They’ve been honest with us and that they’re not interested because of the challenges they had previously in Conference USA,” the source said.

Army was in C-USA from 1998-2004. The Cadets were 9-41 in C-USA play and finished last in the league five of the seven seasons.


Since: Jan 4, 2010
Posted on: October 11, 2011 5:17 pm


Suggestion (12-14) CONFERENCE LEAGUE..

1. UCONN - Connecticut.
2. RUTGERS - New Jersey.
3. NAVY - Annapolis, Maryland.
4. USF - Tampa, Florida.
5. UCF - Orlando, Florida.
6. TEMPLE - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.


1. BOISE ST - Boise, Idaho.
3. CINCY - Cincinnati, Ohio.
4. AIR FORCE - Colorado Springs, Colorado.
5. SMU - Dallas, Texas.
6. HOUSTON - Houston, Texas.


It would've been nice, but Army can't compete eliminating themselves from consideration.

Eastern & Western Conference w/ 5-6 conference games each and meeting in the Big East Championship.


Since: Mar 28, 2007
Posted on: October 11, 2011 5:12 pm

Big East plotting football, hoops divisions

This is just plain sad. <br />

Since: Jan 16, 2010
Posted on: October 11, 2011 4:51 pm

Big East plotting football, hoops divisions

Liontime has it right, the federal government funds the service academies try pulling their AQ bid unless you want congress to investigate the entire system. Southern Miss has been to 8 straight bowl games and ECU 5 a claim that only 20 other programs can make yet they both appear to be on the outside looking in. One day its market size, the next attendence, the next something else. How about putting the best 64 teams out there and see what happens on the field not in some board room where a bunch of fools try to carve up a pie on the backs of kids that in many cases could not get into the university the represent. The game is being destroyed before our eyes.

Since: Jan 29, 2008
Posted on: October 11, 2011 4:35 pm

Big East plotting football, hoops divisions

One thing nobody is talking about is the strategic aspect of adding the service academies.  Does anyone think the BCS will get away with yanking the AQ status of the conference Navy and Air Force are in one year after joining?  I don't know if anyone is thinking about it this way, but I sure would not want to be the BCS president having to explain that one to say Congress.

Since: Oct 10, 2011
Posted on: October 11, 2011 4:26 pm

Big East plotting football, hoops divisions

Hulaboytroy wrote "Can someone please explain why East Carolina is on the outside looking in?  Top 3 attendance outside the AQ schools.  Big untapped TV market of Raleigh, TideWater and Charlotte. Strong facilities and a strong out of conference schedule year in year out.  SMU and UCF are riding a high and at the moment ECU is in flux.  This stinks just like 03-04 expansion. "

ECU does bring in lots of fans to the stadium for sure.  That does not translate into bringing in other markets however.  Other than in Greenville (small market) ECU would not bring in other NC markets unless they were going to a BCS game.  Nobody in Tidewater (Norfolk/Va Beach) knows who they are ....that is VT territory (more than UVA).  I love the Pirates and I agree they are getting a raw deal.  They are better at FB than many of the other schools but it is about location...why is nobody mentioning Southern Miss?  They are very much like ECU, great FB tradition but location stinks.  UCF is a good fit.  Houston is a good fit.  AF and Navy also are good fits (not so much geographically for AF).  Maybe even Temple is a fit.  They all bring in pretty big TV markets and some bring in good BB as well (Houston and Temple). 

I am pulling for ECU.

Since: Nov 3, 2007
Posted on: October 11, 2011 4:20 pm

Big East plotting football, hoops divisions

It's too bad the best basketball conference in falling apart to save the 6th best conference in football.

Since: Oct 11, 2011
Posted on: October 11, 2011 3:53 pm

Big East plotting football, hoops divisions

Not really sure how Tampa  has helped, have you won the Big East? Tampa Fans are fickle anyhow, If the day is sunny people are at the beach on the boat. Even in the hight of the Buc's superbowl run they could not fill the stadium. The Rays won the AL East, and the Al Championship and they beg the fans to show up. Tampa is not much for sports anyhow. So im not sure how the Bulls have helped the conference either

Since: Oct 6, 2011
Posted on: October 11, 2011 3:52 pm

Big East plotting football, hoops divisions

They should only add 2 more schools for hoops Temple and maybe UMass both in the MAC for football and both historic basketball teams teams. all of the other 4 teams added should be football-only.

Since: Oct 11, 2011
Posted on: October 11, 2011 3:51 pm

Big East plotting football, hoops divisions

Not to mention that FIU beat UCF. In fact, the only Florida teams that UCF has ever beaten are FAU and Bethune-Cookman.

Since: Oct 11, 2011
Posted on: October 11, 2011 3:49 pm

Big East plotting football, hoops divisions

FIU would be a better addition than UCF. At least FIU brings the Miami area.

I also don't buy the argument that UCF would "improve" in an AQ conference. Big deal. A lot of teams would improve in an AQ conference.  FIU is in perhaps one of the best recruiting areas in the nation, you don't think they would improve if they had all the money that being in an AQ conference brings?  Same thing regarding fan support. They'd get more fan turnout playing against teams like WVU, USF, and Louisville than they would playing the likes of Troy, UL-Lafayette, and North Texas.

Joining a BCS conference isn't about how that conference can help your school. It's about how your school can help the BCS conference.

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