The Big East has been on a steady decline for a while, most recently when Louisville and Rutgers decided to follow the many other teams to bigger, better prospects in other conferences. Even with the addition of new schools, things aren’t getting much better for the Big East’s future.
Today the seven, basketball-only, Catholic schools met in New York to discuss their unhappiness with where the conference is headed. Marquette, DePaul, St.Johns, Georgetown, Providence, Seton Hall, and Villanova are concerned about the recent additions of full member schools and the new media deal that will pay those basketball-only schools less than what they are making now.
The bigger concern is that the seven schools may have the power to dissolve the conference, retaining all of the assets and the brand name associated with the Big East. Currently, the Catholic schools have the necessary three-fourth votes to have controlling power according to ESPN.com’s Andy Katz and Brett McMurphy.
Another option would be for the teams to simply break away from the conference. That would pose its’ own problems, though. The schools would be forced to forfeit the conference’s tournament earnings, leaving them without the extra money to fund a new conference on their own. The seven would also have to lure other big name schools out to join them in their venture.
Though, no decisions were made today, the seven schools and the Big East have a lot to think about moving forward. The appeal of the conference is quickly fading and the media deals have not gone as well has many had hoped. If something isn’t done soon to rectify the problem, the Big East will be no more, and sooner than we think.