Tag:BIg East
Posted on: September 20, 2011 12:35 pm
Edited on: September 20, 2011 1:06 pm
 

West Virginia turned down by ACC, SEC

With the uncertainty of the future of the Big East, it's no secret several schools are seeking conference membership elsewhere. West Virginia, however, appears like it will remain in the league as Big East sources told CBSSports.com that the Mountaineers will not be accepted into either the Atlantic Coast Conference or Southeastern Conference.

WVU had enquired with both leagues, but WVU officials told representatives of the Big East those overtures had been denied and they were remaining in the Big East.

West Virginia athletic director Oliver Luck released a statement on Sunday concerning conference realignment and ironically did not mention the Big East once in his statement.

"There is no question that the landscape of college athletics is once again changing," Luck said. "West Virginia University has great tradition as the state's flagship land-grant institution and we will continue working to do what's best for our University and its athletic teams. No matter how the college athletic landscape changes, there is no doubt WVU is and will remain a national player."

After Saturday’s news that Pittsburgh and Syracuse were headed to the ACC, there have been various reports that UConn and Rutgers are likely candidates to join the ACC

Both schools have released statements about conference realignment, leaving open the possibility either or both would leave the Big East if extended an invitation to the ACC.

Also, Monday Big East commissioner John Marinatto told the New York Times that he expects to make Pitt and Syracuse honor the Big East’s withdrawal agreement - $5 million and 27 months notice. If true, that means the Panthers and Orange could not join the ACC until July 2014.

Posted on: September 18, 2011 8:15 am
Edited on: September 18, 2011 10:54 am
 

ACC officially adds Pitt, Syracuse

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - The Atlantic Coast Conference Council of Presidents unanimously voted to accept Pittsburgh and Syracuse as new members Sunday, the league announced. The invitation followed the submission of letters of application from both universities.

“The ACC is a strong united conference that is only going to get better with the addition of the University of Pittsburgh and Syracuse University,” said Duke President Richard Broadhead, chair of the ACC Council of Presidents.  “Both schools are committed to competing at the highest level of academics and athletics.  We welcome them as full partners in the ACC.”

On Saturday morning, CBSSports.com first reported that Pitt and Syracuse had submitted letters of application to the ACC. Commissioner John Swofford said the league would respect the Big East's withdrawal by-laws, which requires 27 months notice. However, it's doubtful the Big East would want Pitt and Syracuse to remain in the league over that period because it would seek to immediately add additional members to survive.

“The ACC has enjoyed a rich tradition by balancing academics and athletics and the addition of Pitt and Syracuse further strengthens the ACC culture in this regard,” Swofford said. “Pittsburgh and Syracuse also serve to enhance the ACC’s reach into the states of New York and Pennsylvania and geographically bridges our footprint between Maryland and Massachusetts. With the addition of Pitt and Syracuse, the ACC will cover virtually the entire Eastern Seaboard of the United States.”

It also could serve as a devastating blow to the Big East Conference. Syracuse was a founding member and Pittsburgh has been a member since 1982. The Big East was stunned by the news and didn't learn that either school had submitted a letter of application to the ACC until Saturday.

“This is an exciting day for the University of Pittsburgh. We have a long history of competing and collaborating with the distinguished universities that already are members of the Atlantic Coast Conference, and have enormous respect for both their academic strengths and their athletic accomplishments,” Pittsburgh Chancellor Mark Nordenberg said. “In looking to our own future, we could not envision a better conference home for Pitt and are grateful to the Council of Presidents for extending an invitation to join the ACC community.”

Pittsburgh desire to leave the Big East was "common knowledge," several Big East sources told CBSSports.com. Nordenberg has served as chairman of the Big East's executive committee of presidents and "put the brakes" on the Big East accepting a $1.3 million media rights deal from ESPN in the spring.

“This is a very significant day for all of our student-athletes, coaches and staff at the University of Pittsburgh,” Pitt athletic director Steve Pederson said. “The strength and quality of the ACC is highly regarded by everyone at Pitt. When we set high expectations for our student-athletes in their academic, athletic and personal goals, it is important to provide every opportunity and resource to enable that success. Joining the ACC and the outstanding institutions in this conference will give every Pitt student-athlete the chance to achieve their highest aspirations."

The addition of Pittsburgh and Syracuse will speed up the race to 16-team superconferences. So what will happen next? Here's one viewpoint on what lies ahead for the ACC and Big East along with the other four automatic qualifying BCS leagues and Notre Dame.

"We are very excited to be joining the ACC," Syracuse Chancellor Nancy Cantor said. "This is a tremendous opportunity for Syracuse, and with its outstanding academic quality and athletic excellence, the ACC is a perfect fit for us. The ACC is home to excellent national research universities with very strong academic quality, and is a group that Syracuse will contribute to significantly and benefit from considerably.

"As a comprehensive, all-sports conference, the ACC provides Syracuse tremendous opportunities for quality competition and growth in all sports, while also renewing some of our historic rivalries. This move will also bolster our continued efforts to look outward, engage, and extend Syracuse’s reach to key areas of the country, including the southeast, as we grow and expand our national connections to alumni, partners and the students of the future. We are pleased that Syracuse adds a New York City dimension to the ACC, a region in which we have built strong identity and affinity, and we look forward to bringing ACC games to the Big Apple.  Overall, for Syracuse, this opportunity provides long-term conference stability in what is an uncertain, evolving, and rapidly shifting national landscape."

The league did not announce when Syracuse and Pittsburgh would join the conference. The Big East requires 27 months notice to leave the conference, although it's doubtful that would be enforced, sources said, since the Big East would want to replace both schools as quickly as possible. Big East schools must pay $5 million to leave. Last week, the ACC unanimously increased its withdrawal fee to $20 million, in a move of solidarity.

"Today is a day that we will remember for years to come," Syracuse athletic director Daryl Gross said. "We are truly excited that academically and athletically we will be a member of the ACC, one of the nation's premier collegiate athletic conferences. As New York's College Team, we plan to compete at the highest level across all of our sports and help to enhance this great conference."

Gross is absolutely right: today is the day that the entire college football conference landscape will remember as the day it changed forever.
Category: NCAAF
Posted on: September 17, 2011 10:26 pm
Edited on: September 17, 2011 10:31 pm
 

Big East commish issues statement

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - Big East commissioner John Marinatto issued a statement Saturday night on the news that Pittsburgh and Syracuse are headed to the ACC.

“Although I was obviously very disappointed to learn the news about the ACC’s being in discussions about membership with the University of Pittsburgh and Syracuse University, I continue to believe the Big East Conference is well positioned for the future and that the events of the past 24 hours will unify our membership," Marinatto said. "We have been working steadily to solidify and strengthen the Big East  Conference and position us for our upcoming TV negotiations and I am confident that we will again emerge from this situation and remain strong."

Category: NCAAF
Posted on: September 17, 2011 10:32 am
Edited on: September 18, 2011 12:14 am
 

Pitt, Syracuse apply to ACC, likely in on Sunday

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - Pittsburgh and Syracuse submitted letters of application to the Atlantic Coast Conference and are "likely gone" from the Big East, high ranking ACC and Big East officials told CBSSports.com.

CBSSports.com's Gary Parrish reported Saturday afternoon that the league could vote to accept the two schools as early as Sunday. On Saturday night the ACC announced it would hold a media teleconference at 9:30 a.m. Sunday. The league did not specify what the teleconference was about, but the league's presidents are expected to formally vote to admit Pitt and Syracuse Sunday morning.

It's unknown if the schools could join the ACC next season.

Here’s the latest breakdown on what to expect among the six automatic qualifying conferences.

Pittsburgh and Syracuse independently submitted letters of application to the ACC, a league source told CBSSports.com.

Florida State President Eric Barron told The Associated Press on Saturday before the Seminoles played No. 1 Oklahoma that the ACC was excited about adding to its "northern tier."

"Pittsburgh and Syracuse, who have applied, these are solid academic schools, and the ACC is a truly academic conference," Barron said. "Certainly great basketball teams, a good history of football.

"I'm sure consideration will be very fast. I'll be surprised if it's not [Sunday]."

Earlier, a Big East official told CBSSports.com: "There is no scenario where a president applies to a league and isn't admitted."

Ironically, Pittsburgh chancellor Mark Nordenberg is the chairman of the Big East's executive committee. A Big East official added: "It's sort of like the fox in the hen house."

An ACC official said its league has been contacted by 10 schools, but the official would not disclose what conferences those schools were from. 

Also, at last week’s ACC presidents meeting in Greensboro, N.C., the league’s presidents “unanimously” voted to increase the ACC’s exit fee to $20 million. This takes affect immediately. The previous exit fee amount was $12 million to $15 million.

The loss of Syracuse and Pittsburgh could be devastating to the Big East. Syracuse was a founding member and Pittsburgh has been with the league since 1982.

An ACC official also indicated Texas has "reached out" to the ACC, but any speculation that Texas is joining the ACC is "premature."

An ACC official also said there is no timeline on expansion for the league.

In July, ACC commissioner John Swofford talked about expansion with CBSSports.com.

"I don't think it's inevitable, doesn't mean it won't happen," Swofford said. "That [going to 16 teams] is not easy to do. It's a very sexy subject to write about. It's easy to write about it and make those predictions, but if they don't come true nobody remembers you made those predictions. I think in talking [to other BCS commissioners] -- all of us -- what we want to do is what's best for our conference. We had some very thorough [talks] in the past year because of last summer -- that weren't very public -- but they were very thorough. Our preference is to remain at 12 [schools], we like 12 as the number. We're not crazy about 14 or 16 [schools] because it begins to change a number of things tangibly such as scheduling and intangibly such as culture.

"But we want to remain nimble enough so if we want to look in that direction we'll be ready to do that in very short order. Twelve [teams] works. It's not to say 14 or 16 can't work, it can. I don't think [16 team conferences] is inevitable, it's possible."

A Big East official said it's "common knowledge" among league members that Pittsburgh wants to get its name out in expansion talks.

The Big East, trying to survive all the conference realignment scenarios, has reached out to Texas, Texas Tech, Kansas, Kansas State, Missouri, Iowa State Baylor, said a Big 12 athletic director.

“Although I was obviously very disappointed to learn the news about the ACC’s being in discussions about membership with the University of Pittsburgh and Syracuse University, I continue to believe the Big East Conference is well positioned for the future and that the events of the past 24 hours will unify our membership," Big East commissioner John Marinatto said in a statement. "We have been working steadily to solidify and strengthen the Big East  Conference and position us for our upcoming TV negotiations and I am confident that we will again emerge from this situation and remain strong."

Category: NCAAF
Posted on: September 17, 2011 9:27 am
Edited on: September 17, 2011 9:31 am
 

Pitt, Syracuse send ACC letters of application

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The Atlantic Coast Conference has received letters of application from Pittsburgh and Syracuse, a high ranking league official told CBSSports.com.

The ACC also has recently been contacted by 10 schools, the official said. However, they would not disclose what conferences those schools were from. 

Also, at last week’s ACC presidents meeting in Greensboro, N.C., the league’s presidents “unanimously” voted to increase the ACC’s exit fee to $20 million. This takes affect immediately.

The New York Times reported Friday that Syracuse, Pitt and the ACC had been in talks about the two Big East schools joining the league. Representatives from all three declined comment to the Times.

ACC commissioner John Swofford has said previously that the ACC will always be mindful and do what’s best for its member institutions.”



Category: NCAAF
Posted on: August 17, 2011 12:33 pm
Edited on: August 17, 2011 1:36 pm
 

Emmert: no conference realignment summit

After NCAA president Mark Emmert read erroneous media reports that he planned to have a summit on conference realignment, he emailed several officials throughout intercollegiate athletics to clarify no meetings would take place.

CBSSports.com obtained the document Emmert sent out.

"I have been and will continue to engage individual presidents and commissioners about the reform effort that was launched last week as part of the Division I presidential retreat," Emmert wrote. "In that context, all constituents have been involved in meaningful discussion on how best to conduct our business, including conference realignments, in the best interests of student-athletes. Open and frank discussion is needed to ensure expected reforms are not derailed in any way. However, I have not proposed, nor do I have plans to propose a summit on conference realignment as recently reported by several media outlets. Such reports are simply in error."

Getting all the key players from the SEC, Big 12, Pac-12, Big Ten, ACC and Big East conferences together to discuss conference realignment would seem like a good idea for the future of college athletics. But an NCAA spokesman said that was never a consideration.

"Conference affilations are the purview of the conferences not the NCAA," said Bob Williams, the NCAA's vice president of communications.

I asked Williams if there also were legal reasons why Emmert wouldn't meet with the BCS conference commissioners.

"Antitrust is always an issue," he said.

Posted on: August 13, 2011 5:16 pm
Edited on: August 15, 2011 11:57 am
 

BYU, Louisville say they're happy where they are

NOTE: This is an update from an earlier post on BYU and Louisville.

If - or when - the Big 12 starts seeking a replacement for Texas A&M, at least two possible candidates told CBSSports.com they are happy with their current situations.

BYU, which left the Mountain West last season to become an independent, plans to remain an independent, while Louisville is happy to remain in the Big East. That, of course, could change if either school receives an invitation to join the Big 12. Both schools have been speculated as possible targets of the Big 12 if Texas A&M leaves for the SEC.

"We have not been contacted by anybody," BYU athletic director Tom Holmoe said. "We are very happy with our partnerships and relationships with ESPN, BYUtv and the West Coast Conference [in BYU's Olympic sports.]

"We like the plans we have made as an independent in football and with the West Coast Conference. We are moving forward fast on that path and getting ready for a big season."

Louisville athletic director Tom Jurich said the Cardinals are excited about the future of the Big East.

The league recently turned down a nine-year, $1.4 billion media rights deal from ESPN and is line for an even bigger deal in the next couple years from ESPN, NBC/Comcast or Fox.

"We are very happy where we are," Jurich said.

Neither Holmoe or Jurich would address any other conferences. I also asked Holmoe how committed BYU was to being an independent. "Just focusing in on what could be an exciting year for Cougar football," he said.

One official at a BCS conference, that could be affected by Texas A&M's move to the SEC and the resulting dominos, said Saturday he had not heard of any new developments.

"The only news is whatever your colleagues make up," he said jokingly.
Category: NCAAF
Posted on: August 3, 2011 9:18 am
 

Big East move should help keep Patterson at TCU

NEWPORT, R.I. – Besides all the obvious benefits of TCU’s move to the Big East – money, better BCS bowl access, money, more television exposure, money and money – another plus for the Horned Frogs is it could make it easier to keep Gary Patterson in Fort Worth.

Patterson has been mentioned as a candidate for multiple openings in past years, but has remained at TCU. He begins his 12th season with the Horned Frogs on Sept. 2 against Baylor. The Horned Frogs are playing their final season in the Mountain West before moving to the Big East next season.

“Gary has an opportunity to create his own shadow,” TCU athletic director Chris Del Conte said. “You can go somewhere else and you’re following some one else’s footsteps.

“You go to Alabama, it’s still Bear Bryant. You go to Texas, it’s still Darrell Royal. You go to Arkansas, it’s Frank Broyles. It’s still Woody Hayes at Ohio [State] and Bo Schembechler at Michigan. Gary is that figure for us. He is our iconic figure.”

The Horned Frogs are in the process of $105 million expansion and renovation of Amon Carter Stadium. It’s scheduled to be completed for the 2012 season. That’s only one piece of the puzzle, Del Conte said.

“The one thing we have to continue to do is invest in facilities, invest in staff and invest in our program,” Del Conte said. “But Gary’s created that iconic figure for us. That’s something to be said.

“The grass isn’t always greener. That whole field is riddled with people who thought it was greener and they’re now skeletons littered in the weeds.”

The Horned Frogs first game in the renovated Carter Stadium in 2012 will be against Grambling on Sept. 8. TCU’s first season as a Big East member also will include home games against Oklahoma, Virginia, Cincinnati, Louisville, South Florida and West Virginia and road games at Pittsburgh, UConn, Rutgers and Syracuse.

Even though the Horned Frogs aren’t members of the Big East yet, Del Conte has an opinion on the league's expansion.

“Whatever we do, you have to have significant value to the mosaic that is already there,” Del Conte said. “If not, keep the league at what it’s at. Nine, 10, 12 [teams] – I have no dog in that race. Our forefathers do. My opinion is you have to add significant value and preserve the Big East’s tradition and history in basketball and what Dave Gavitt created way back in the day.”

Del Conte said he’s confident a Big East team will be playing for a national championship – in football – in the very near future and referenced near misses by Cincinnati in 2009 (if Texas doesn’t edge Nebraska in the Big 12 title game) and West Virginia in 2007 (if the Mountaineers defeat Pitt in regular season finale).

“There will be a Big East team playing in the national championship game soon enough,” Del Conte said. “There will be.”

 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com