Sources: Butler eyeing Atlantic 10

Updated: March 12, 2012, 10:56 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

Butler has expressed interest in joining the Atlantic 10 for all sports except football as the replacement to Temple, multiple sources told ESPN.com's Andy Katz.

The A-10 will lose Temple, historically one of its best men's basketball programs, to the Big East in the fall of 2013. Butler has been among the dominant programs in the Horizon League, which, like the A-10, has been a competitive mid-major conference in the recent past.

The Bulldogs are intrigued by the access to major media markets in the A-10 and the increase in competition with Xavier, Saint Louis and Dayton among others, sources said. Adding Butler, which is located in Indianapolis, would give the A-10 another Midwest presence to go with those three schools.

Before missing out on an NCAA tournament selection Sunday, Butler reached the NCAA championship game in 2011 and 2010. Butler lost to Valparaiso in the semifinals of the Horizon tournament. The Bulldogs (20-14) will host Delaware on Wednesday night in the opening round of the College Basketball Invitational.

The school competes in the Horizon League in all sports except football, where it plays in the Pioneer Football League. That league, which also includes Dayton, is classified in Division I's Football Championship Subdivision but does not offer athletic scholarships.

Information from ESPN.com college basketball writer Andy Katz was used in this report.