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At yesterday's meeting, potential candidates such as Boise State, Central Florida and Temple were...

At yesterday's meeting, potential candidates such as Boise State, Central Florida and Temple were discussed, but no consensus could be agreed upon which teams to invite first, or at all. The basketball factions were adamant about not adding anyone, while the football faction argued that if the Big East is going to survive as a BCS conference, whose champion gained automatic entry to a BCS bowl it is imperative for Boise State, with its high national ranking was a necessity for survival.

Time for a split. There's no way around it. Update: now Luicci says that VIllanova is blocking Temple. Looks like the non-football schools will get the conference they want - a conference that does not exist.

Is UCF the first Big East domino?

The Greenwich Time thinks so, additionally adding (hooray) that the exit fees will not be raised. Huzzah! Update: and it looks like Temple is next.

Some good news on BE expansion

Tom Luicci reports that the BE doesn't have the votes to raise its exit fees, and is finally looking at realistic options like Houston as opposed to FCS bottom feeders.

The Big East's half measures

Tom Luicci says the plan is to add Temple and UCF as full members, along with Boise State, Air Force, and Navy as federated members for football only - with the possibility of still upgrading Villanova. That speaks volumes to the Big East's priorities. Nova is 1-5 in FCS, and the Big East would rather add them then a real program like Houston capable of threatening the Providence-centric power structure. Blow it up, Tim and Ollie, blow it up. No to raising the exit fees, no to Villanova, each is a bridge too far that cannot be crossed. The remaining Big East football schools are only inviting ruin by staying in the same conference as eight programs that resent how much football drives the college football revenue structure. They are a cancer, and their continued presence cannot be tolerated. Given the Big East's 3/4 veto requirement, RU and WVU can likely block Villanova football, although that's (falsely) assuming that only three programs were against Nova. As to blocking the exit fee - Rutgers, WVU, and UConn would need to find a fourth partner for that, but fortunately Luicci reports that the measure isn't making much traction.

According to sources familiar with the process, but not authorized to talk about any negotiations,...

According to sources familiar with the process, but not authorized to talk about any negotiations, the Big East is focusing on two areas, with SMU, Central Florida ,Navy and Temple as the primary schools being looked at. Air Force is also being considered, but that seems more remote of a possibility

Why, it's almost as if the Big East conference leadership hates football and is intentionally trying to destroy it! SMU and UCF are on the top of the list, regardless of the fact that the Big East already has teams in Florida and Dallas. Houston is nowhere to be seen, and Temple remains a second-tier candidate. Up until the dying end, all the Big East cares about is unjustly enriching half of its members while clubbing the other half over the head with a bat. The conference is leaving its best remaining cards on the table, and still blathering on about returning to the federated system that got them into this mess in the first place, because the alternative would be actually letting Big East football flex its muscles and make decisions with the intention of actually maximizing conference revenue for a change.

ESPN3 and Rutgers

Rutgers athletics spokesman Jason Baum announced earlier that Rutgers/Navy will be an ESPN 3 exclusive next week, the third such game this season thus far. Rutgers actually probably doesn't mind all that much not having local TV for this game, which could help attendance, but it's still not at all fair. ESPN 3 claims a lot of Rutgers games, and it's for a very specific reason. Cablevision is the cable provider for a good portion of New Jersey (and the rest of the NYC market), including New Brunswick and Piscataway. Cablevision refuses to add ESPN 3, so as leverage, ESPN makes live Rutgers games ESPN 3 exclusives so that fans can not view them on regional sports networks such as SNY, who certainly would much rather have RU/'Navy than Cincinnati/Louisville that week. ESPN 3 is a fun enough service, but this routine is quickly wearing thin. Even Knicks and Ranger fans hate the Dolans, but if this may be the one course of action that could make people actually take their side of a change. ESPN needs to give it a rest, and let their product actually sink or swim on the merits. Of course, this is also another reason why the Big East conference is terrible, as these hostile acts are only even possible because Mike Tranghese was a terrible commissioner who hated Big East football with a burning passion, and thus left himself exposed to sign a terrible television contract.

Kevin McNamara thinks Big East football has bullied basketball

Ummm Was that when Providence College treated the Big East conference as a dictatorship? When Mike Tranghese tried to destroy Big East football by forcing half of its programs on the ACC in 1998, which invited the ACC raid five years later? Sounds like Providence is panicking that their iron grip on power is in danger, especially since McNamara insists that the Big East needs programs like Georgetown, St. John's, and Villanova (for all sports, no less!) Those programs are assets in hoops, but the BE surely doesn't need the irrelevant and disposable Providence program. McNamara tweeted last night that Mike Tranghese is consulting for the Big East, which fortunately probably means that he and John Marinatto are of one mind on everything. Both are horrible commissioners who actively plotted against half of their conference members. Tranghese came out and said on WFAN that he only cares about Providence College. He is the LAST person anyone from the Big East should be chatting up right now. If there's a chance in hell that the Big East survives, it's by finally putting football first with a football-first commissioner.

"It's now a dog-eat-dog world in college athletics," he said, "and everyone is acting in their own...

"It's now a dog-eat-dog world in college athletics," he said, "and everyone is acting in their own self-interest. It's not about fit or academics or rivalries. It's about football and money, period." Tranghese said "you can't cast stones" at Pitt or Syracuse because every football school in the Big East "didn't feel secure." He said that through the final years of his tenure in the commissioner's chair, he grew tired of the "belly-aching" from football schools that longed for bigger TV dollars and bowl contracts. "They simply weren't winning enough games and kept pointing the finger at us to get them more money," he said. "The best way to solve their own problems was to win games, but the Big East hasn't been good enough in football. It was an incredible burden."

Like raiding the Atlantic 10 and Conference USA wasn't acting in the Big East's self-interest? Mike Tranghese seems determined to ensure that John Marinatto doesn't go down as the worst commissioner in Big East history. Tranghese already conceded on WFAN that he only cares about Providence College and hates football (reiterated here.) Here's an idea Mike. Maybe Big East football wouldn't have been fatally flawed if they had a commissioner who didn't despise it so much that he tried to give away half of the league to the ACC. Tranghese claimed he retired on WFAN because he couldn't keep the league together, but told the New York Times in 2009 that the Big East was "stable."

Villanova football destroyed the Big East

The Syracuse Post-Standard last night confirmed months of rumors, with multiple anonymous quotes. Rutgers, Pitt, and West Virginia were on the side of the angels, desperately trying to keep the Big East together while fending off a an attempt to finally destroy the conference by adding Villanova football.

Big East basketball schools get what they wanted

Big East basketball schools get what they wanted: the destruction of the conference

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