- Andy Katz, ESPN Senior Writer
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1. One of the top agenda items for new NCAA vice president Mark Lewis is the site of the 2013 NCAA tournament East Regional. The original plan was to hold the 75th anniversary of the event at Madison Square Garden in New York. But according to multiple sources, the NCAA found out Wednesday that it isn’t going to be possible due to the late request and the dates already being sent in to the NBA and NHL for the primary tenants. That means Lewis and the NCAA staff will now decide between Syracuse and the new Barclays Arena in Brooklyn for the site. The regionals are usually already known two years in advance but the NCAA held out hope for a historic setting for the East Regional. The other three regionals are set for Los Angeles (Staples Arena), Indianapolis (Lucas Oil Stadium) and Arlington-Dallas (Cowboy Stadium). The Final Four is in Atlanta.
2. Al Skinner has emerged as a candidate for the vacant opening at Brown. This would be a home run hire for the Ivy League school that fired Jesse Agel. Skinner is Boston College’s all-time winningest coach. Brown wouldn’t find a better tactical coach than Skinner. Skinner would keep Brown assistant T.J. Sorrentine, the former Vermont guard who is popular with the current players. If Brown were Ivy League smart the coaching search wouldn’t last any longer since Agel was fired March 5.
3. No one should be surprised by the potential failure of a proposed merger of the MWC and C-USA. A merger would mean one automatic NCAA tournament bid instead of two. The most likely scenario, according to league sources, is for a scheduling/television agreement. Expansion is likely with C-USA looking at North Texas, FIU, Louisiana Tech, Charlotte, UTSA and Middle Tennessee. The MWC would naturally look at Utah State and San Jose State and could possibly grab UTEP in a shift from C-USA to the more natural MWC.