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Friday, March 15, 2013
Big East mailblog

By Andrea Adelson

Lots of questions this week. Let's get to it!

Justin in Texas writes: With the Catholic Seven taking the Big East name, and traditional rivals Syracuse, Pitt, Rutgers, Louisville and West Virginia gone (or soon to be gone), what is keeping Connecticut in the 'Who Knows' Conference? Is it possible to see the Huskies go independent in football and all other sports move to the new Big East? There are more ties with that conference, especially with basketball.

Andrea Adelson: I will tell you exactly what is keeping UConn in this conference. It has no other options. Until the ACC changes its mind, this is where UConn is going to stay. There simply is no way the Huskies can afford going independent in football. How would they get their own TV deal? How would they go about scheduling without eight automatic league games? Those are two big questions off the bat. I realize the Huskies have been hit harder than just about anybody, but they are stuck where they are until a better opportunity comes along.




DMG in Tampa writes: I am now happier with the new Big East football teams that will remain after all the other teams finally leave. There will be a settling time and a growing period and this new Big East with a new name will show that it is better than the one with the teams that split for greener pastures. As they say, the grass is greener over the septic tank for those teams that left and are leaving.

Adelson: I see Mike Aresco's optimism is having an effect on you guys!




Ryan in Johnstown, Ohio, writes: AA -- great article about splitting the revenue. As a fan of one of the old guard schools, I think the bulk of the money should go to them. I think the new members should receive the equivalent of what they paid in Big East entrance fees, plus whatever they paid to exit their previous league. Temple should get an extra $1 million to make up for what they had to pay Villanova for the privilege of never actually having to share the Philly market with the Wildcats. This would mean that none of them actually lost any money by moving to the Big East. USF, Cincinnati, and UConn should split the rest evenly among the three of them. Does this sound fair to you?

Adelson: I need to get out my calculator. In all seriousness, I have no problems with reimbursing new members for their entry/exit fees, and giving Temple its money back as well. As I stated earlier, USF, Cincinnati and UConn deserve more. How much more is what is up for debate.




Bob in Barnegat, N.J., writes: Re: splitting the exit revenue. Louisville and Rutgers are leaving next year. They were/are still members when WVU, Syracuse, and Pitt leave. Shouldn't they get some of the $100 million? 2nd question. Any word on the financial arrangements for Louisville and RU leaving for 2014?

Adelson: Louisville and Rutgers are not going to get a dime. Nor do they deserve a dime. 2. No word yet on what Louisville and Rutgers are going to pay to leave.




Andrew in California writes: Is it just me or did the basketball schools and Notre Dame make out like bandits in this whole messy divorce? They all got to leave in six months instead of 27 months and they got to keep the name. Pitt and Syracuse had to pay $7.5 million to leave 12 months early and WVU paid $20 million to leave 20 months early so the C-7 should have had to pay at least $52.5 million to leave early. Instead, all they had to do was give up their fair share of $110 million, which would be 7/18ths, or $42 million. From where I am sitting, it looks like the basketball schools got to leave for $10 million less than the minimum expected payment and took the Big East brand name for free!!

Adelson: You forgot to mention Notre Dame, which did not have to pay an exit fee at all AND did not have to wait 27 months, either. Honestly, I think the Big East just wanted to work something out and move on. Negotiations sometimes mean you do not get all the money you are entitled to, but it does at least allow the league to move forward much earlier than it would have had they still been haggling over a few million bucks.




Dave in Winter Park, Fla., writes: Your comments on filling Bright House for the UCF/USF missed the point entirely. (George) O'Leary is the reason the stadium is half full on a good day, the alumni and students despise him and he can't put a consistent winner on the field. The fans are apathetic, and with the Big East looking just like Conference USA, five more years looming of O'Leary on the sidelines (he'll never go willingly, it will be an ugly force out like Bobby Bowden), there is nothing to get the fan base excited. UCF is making a horrible mistake in extending O"Leary when it should be cutting him loose, this is the perfect opportunity to re-engerize the fan base with a new coach, but it is being wasted. This mistake will set the program back many years.

Adelson: You mean to tell me the Conference USA title game I attended at Bright House in 2010 was not even close to a sell out because the fans do not like O'Leary? You mean to tell me fans did not come out to support a 10-win team last year was because they "despise" O'Leary? PUH-LEEZE. Look, I get that there is a segment of the fan base that wants to get rid of the guy. But that has to be the lamest excuse I have ever heard for not selling out games. Those players, who put in a ridiculous amount of time working to be the best they can be, deserve your support -- no matter how you feel about the man on the sideline.




Jim in Louisiana writes: Andrea,I'm very curious to know if there is any talk of Louisville leaving the Big East and joining the ACC for next year instead of the 2014/15 season? I'm thinking with the Catholic 7 splitting off and ND trying to get to the ACC for next season that UL might do the same. Are you hearing anything along those lines?

Adelson: Not going to happen. Football schedules have already been set. Louisville joining a year early would also cause unbalanced divisions for a year. So you gotta wait until 2014.