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Blog Entry

Big East talks expansion; contacts UH, SMU

Posted on: October 18, 2011 10:25 am
Edited on: October 18, 2011 2:43 pm
 

Officials at Houston and SMU have both been contacted by Big East commissioner John Marinatto and have been told the league wants to discuss with them further about joining the league, sources told CBSSports.com.

The Houston Chronicle reported Monday night that Houston had been extended an invitation. However, league sources said no official invitations have been extended to any teams. The Big East also released a statement Saturday that no invitations have been extended.

On Tuesday afternoon, Marinatto held a media teleconference, but would not identify specific schools but did admit he's had preliminary discussions with several schools.

Those schools are Boise State, Navy, Air Force, UCF, Houston and SMU, sources said.

Marinatto said he's confident the Big East will remain an automatic qualifying BCS conference when the new cycle begins in 2014 and didn't provide a timetable on adding teams to replace TCU, Pittsburgh and Syracuse.

"Stay tuned," he said. "We're not rushing ourselves to meet anyone's deadline. The sooner, the better."

Marinatto reiterated that the Big East would not allow Pittsburgh or Syracuse to leave the league early and must honor the 27-month exit agreement. Pitt and Syracuse will remain in the Big East through June 30, 2014, meaning the Big East could have a 14-team football league in 2013 if necessary, Marinatto said.

A college football industry source indicated the fact the ACC has to wait until then is not a big deal to the league. "It just gives the ACC more time to get organized and get their schedules set," the source said.

On Monday night, the Big East’s presidents and chancellors voted unanimously to increase the league’s exit fee to $10 million, but the increased fee is contingent on either Navy or Air Force joining the league as football only members, sources told CBSSports.com.

Marinatto confirmed the increase in the exit fee, but would not identify the school that would trigger the increased exit fee.

The increased exit fees from $5 million to $10 million for the football schools were something Navy and Air Force wanted before committing to the Big East.

"I don't think anyone will be blindsided or feel bushwhacked when this process is complete," Marinatto said.

Navy, Air Force and Boise State are interested to joining the Big East because of the league's automatic qualifying BCS status, but wanted a bigger financial commitment from the remaining members (Cincinnati, UConn, Louisville, Rutgers, South Florida and West Virginia).

Sources said Houston and SMU – along with UCF – are prepared to accept an invitation to join the Big East as all sports members once an official invitation is extended.

UCF met with Marinatto and other Big East representatives in Cincinnati on Friday. Boise State officials spoke via telephone with the Big East on Thursday.

Marinatto is in the process of scheduling a meeting with Houston and SMU officials in the coming days in New York, sources said.

The Big East wants to get to 12 football teams with the addition of Navy, Air Force and Boise State as football-only members and Houston, SMU and UCF as all-sports members.

However, the Big East still could lose a school if Missouri leaves for the SEC. The New York Times reported Monday night that Missouri’s departure from the Big 12 to the SEC is “inevitable and imminent.” If so, the Big 12 could target either Louisville or West Virginia or even add both teams. BYU also remains an expansion candidate for the Big 12.

Marinatto said the Big East would move quickly in expanding and "is not going to pause" and wait on "the Missouri situation."

Marinatto also said he has not been contacted by any other conferences interested in any Big East schools since TCU left for the Big 12. When the league gets to 12 schools, Marinatto said it's a possibility the Big East could hold its football championship game in New York, similar to the Big East basketball tournament.

Comments

Since: Jul 9, 2010
Posted on: October 18, 2011 2:43 pm
 

Big East contacts Houston, SMU

ncgreene.wv...............Why would an ACC team want to go to the SEC;  after the ACC renegoiates it's multi-billion dollar TV contracts. In fact, the ACC all sports/academic schools are happy in the league and look forward to a great future in football/basketball and olympic sports.  The ACC is a super conference up and down the entire East Coast.  GREAT FUTURE, to say the least !! 



Since: Aug 31, 2007
Posted on: October 18, 2011 2:39 pm
 

Big East contacts Houston, SMU

Big East contacts Houston, SMU

daglafe.......where is WVU going other than the BIG EAST ?

Buford - the Big 12 is seriously looking at WVU.  WVU will not stay in the Big East they will leave sooner or later.  I see one of 3 scenarios playing out.  1 - Big 12 - if Mizzou leaves Big 12 will very likely invite WVU, Louisville, and one other school.  Even if Mizzou stays there is a good chance they add WVU and Louisville to get back to 12.  2 - SEC - They either add Mizzou now and pick up WVU and someone else (likely an ACC school) later, or Mizzou balks and they pick up WVU now.  3 - ACC - Instead of WVU and an ACC school to reach 16, the SEC takes another ACC school instead, forcing the ACC to take WVU.

^^^This with a few qualifiers....^^^

With the 27 month Big East rule.  If Missouri leaves, I would think that the Big 12 tries to make it work with BYU first who is available immediately.  That may or may not happen.  Next on the List is Louisville IMHO.

If the Big 12 wants to go to 12.  I think WVU is on that list with Louisville since they would be available in 2 years.  I think the current Big East with the additional likley invited teams is significantly stronger than it is now.  No offense to Louisville, but as a football school, they are very replaceable if they leave.  I think WVU is harder to replace.



Since: Oct 12, 2011
Posted on: October 18, 2011 2:21 pm
 

Big East contacts Houston, SMU

daglafe.......where is WVU going other than the BIG EAST ?

Buford - the Big 12 is seriously looking at WVU.  WVU will not stay in the Big East they will leave sooner or later.  I see one of 3 scenarios playing out.  1 - Big 12 - if Mizzou leaves Big 12 will very likely invite WVU, Louisville, and one other school.  Even if Mizzou stays there is a good chance they add WVU and Louisville to get back to 12.  2 - SEC - They either add Mizzou now and pick up WVU and someone else (likely an ACC school) later, or Mizzou balks and they pick up WVU now.  3 - ACC - Instead of WVU and an ACC school to reach 16, the SEC takes another ACC school instead, forcing the ACC to take WVU.



Since: Jan 17, 2008
Posted on: October 18, 2011 2:14 pm
 

Big East contacts Houston, SMU

It should be an all sports conference and it can be called the WINC (We're In for Now Conference)

You've been listening to Hoppy Kerchival.



Since: Sep 19, 2006
Posted on: October 18, 2011 2:02 pm
 

Big East contacts Houston, SMU

The Big East is no different than the WAC, MWC, and CUSA in the sence that the member use them as a stepping stone to make a move to a major Conferences. Not one of the members of  I would have to agree with most that Nortre Dame has ruined the relevance of the Big East in football. The Mission Statement of the Big East was to build a power house Basketball Conference and was successful in that venture. However the miss step was that football is and always will be the big money sport that stears the ship of College Athletics. It is sad that they are in such desparation mode and having only the BCS AQ card left to play. I would have to say that they have no chance to save the AQ status unless they add a few more BCS games as they will not be able to take any away from the SEC and be left at the end of the year on the outside of any BCS money for a long time. 



Since: Aug 27, 2006
Posted on: October 18, 2011 1:50 pm
 

Big East contacts Houston, SMU

Great Moves! Plus, even when Missouri does head for the SEC and one Big East school goes, there's Temple. The Big East has the potential in three years to be the third best conference. I love the additions especially all of the rivalries that will ignite.   



Since: Jul 9, 2010
Posted on: October 18, 2011 1:48 pm
 

Big East contacts Houston, SMU

daglafe.......where is WVU going other than the BIG EAST ?



Since: Sep 22, 2011
Posted on: October 18, 2011 1:46 pm
 

Big East contacts Houston, SMU

Honestly all six of the non-AQ teams that are reportedly being added need to get in conference and confirm that they all go or they all stay.  The worst case scenario that I see for both the Big East and the MWC/C-USA merger is for some teams to defect to the Big East and some to stay leaving both just weak enough to lose that AQ bid and gaining nothing in return.  At least if all of them go the Big East will likely retain it's BCS bid and the MWC/C-USA merger can grab other non-AQs (ie Utah State, Florida International, Troy) and even though it probably won't be enough for AQ status they will still win by having support of the dual conference alignment and additonal revenue for their schools. 



Since: Mar 23, 2009
Posted on: October 18, 2011 1:41 pm
 

Big East contacts Houston, SMU

That would work too. The key though is keeping the known western and eastern teams in the conference, if that is what they want. But I think they really need to get divisions if they truely do expand that far.




Since: Oct 12, 2011
Posted on: October 18, 2011 1:38 pm
 

Big East contacts Houston, SMU

Surewhynot how about really going for it and adding Memphis in the west and East Carloina in the east?  I was joking but that really isn't such a bad solution - a nationwide conference split east-west.  It reduces travel to a degree and would have good quality football.  It should be an all sports conference and it can be called the WINC (We're In for Now Conference)


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