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PostPosted: Wed Apr 08, 2009 12:49 pm 
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Memphis hired an unknown 1st time coach to replace John Calipari. Quinn and several others have stated that that severely drops Memphis as an all-sports candidate for the BE. I agree with that.

This leads to the next question. Does this dramatically reduce the odds of a BE split in 2010 when tourney revenue can be split up? I think it does.

I think it has always been in the minds of the BE that they could add 1-2 CUSA teams (memphis + maybe UCF) and be in pretty good shape as a stand alone. I don't think they were prepared for their football strength 2 years ago or their basketball dominance this year. I think the last two years have taught everyone in their conference that they are in a cash cow conference that is viable long term.

The football schools probably looked at it a few years ago and thought as an 8 member conference of modest strength they would be passed by the MWC, so they had to add more strong football programs. The dominance of their conference this year however shuffles the deck big time. WV and Villanova appear loaded programs on the rise. UCONN and Louisville are national powers. Syracuse is a notch below. Pittsburgh will fall off a bit, but will still be a bubble school. It seems entirely likely the conference will send 7 schools per year for the foreseeable future and likely at least 1 #1 or #2 seed. It seems entirely possible that most years the BE will be one of the dominant BB conferences.

Being part of the (or "a") premiere BB conference probably serves the BE far better than being essentially a lesser MWC.

The idea of a football standalone was probably based on the idea of adding another BB power in Memphis to leverage BB excellence to keep them in the BCS. That appears gone now.

How does the BEF + UCF look vs. the MWC? Not better.

Additionally, ECU is willing to sell their soul for a football only (#9) membership. Army and Navy give good local markets and could be football-only #9 & #10.

With the Memphis hire, it seems like things are lining up more for the BE to stay together than for them to split... Is the real tumbler ECU (creating a CUSA shakeup) v. Army & Navy (leaving CUSA to figure out their own way)?


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 08, 2009 3:35 pm 
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I'd almost consider the Big East to be a lock for seven bids yearly.

Consider the NCAA expanded the schedule to 30 games. Essentially, any team in the top 7 of that conference is akin to being in the top five of a 12-team league. Baring a simply horrible OOC performance, the Big East's size alone will mandate that their top five are virtual locks, and 6-7 on the good side of the bubble. Teams 10-12 are headed to the NIT and 8-9 will be arguing their conference is so good they deserve to go.


What could REALLY dictate the Big East split situation is "who gets those 7 bids?" Of the 29 bids the last four years,
Football (UL, UConn, SU, Pitt, WVU, Rutgers, Cincy, USF) have gotten 15, while the basketball only schools (Nova, Marquette, Hall, SJU, Prov, DePaul, GTown) have 12. (and Notre Dame 2).

What could drive the wedge would be if the basketball schools and Notre Dame get five of the seven next year. Let's say Nova, Georgetown, Marquette, Notre Dame, UConn and West Virginia are the top six, with Providence getting the seventh spot over Syracuse...

if your football, do you then say "hey, wait a minute. In a nine-team conference, we'd get 4-5 bids. We're getting 3.5 now and only two this year."

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 08, 2009 7:13 pm 
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short answer: yes

long answer:
Cal leaving might have pushed memphis back a step. Future will tell about Pastner. But the Calipari machine kept Memphis on top as the likely candidate. But they could still be at the top, ahead of UCF with ECU a distant third...just not the near lock should there be expansion that they once were.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2009 11:29 am 
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Adding a school because of a coach is the worst reason possible to add a school to the conference.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2009 12:43 pm 
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UofL07 wrote:
Adding a school because of a coach is the worst reason possible to add a school to the conference.


I don't think anyone ever said it would solely be because of a coach. But if you look at expansion moves, they include the basics (market, overall program following, basic success vs failure). But it's schools that have success in the desired sport that often pushes them over other school candidates. And that is often attributed to the program that is being run and was built...you guessed it...by a coach.

Sometimes it works for a conference, sometimes it doesn't:
Examples:
Marshall from MAC to CUSA: was considered the top team in the MAC
TCU from CUSA to MWC: TCU was fresh off one of their best seasons

Would CUSA have spoken to UMass in 1995 about an invitation had the program not been one of the best in basketball under coach Calipari? A northeast school that wouldn't be bringing football to the league? No.


A coach is responsible for the success of a program and certainly needs to be considered a major factor in expansion candidates. This is not the case with schools on a BCS level normally. But with the Big East, the only candidates are non-BCS schools. And the roles of coaches are even greater there for both basketball and football, since the schools often don't have the overall recognition the BCS schools have where they can just plug a coach in, and still be top programs.

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 12, 2009 10:09 pm 
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UofL07 wrote:
Adding a school because of a coach is the worst reason possible to add a school to the conference.


Cincinnati?

I have often wondered if they would have been tapped over Memphis if the Bob Huggins incident happened a year earlier. I think in the case of sports like basketball, the coach IS the program. What are you going to do?


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 12, 2009 10:16 pm 
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So on to the next question...Do the basketball schools allow the football schools to add one or two football only members for scheduling?

I look at the BE and think they are leaving money on the table not adding Army and Navy for football only. Both academies would like the added spotlight of a BCS conference and neither can play the other sports at a level to demand inclusion in other sports. Two good markets...

Or do they let ECU in for football only because of what terms they are willing to endure...?


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 13, 2009 6:56 am 
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double post


Last edited by panthersc97 on Mon Apr 13, 2009 7:00 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 13, 2009 6:57 am 
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finiteman wrote:
So on to the next question...Do the basketball schools allow the football schools to add one or two football only members for scheduling?

I look at the BE and think they are leaving money on the table not adding Army and Navy for football only. Both academies would like the added spotlight of a BCS conference and neither can play the other sports at a level to demand inclusion in other sports. Two good markets...

Or do they let ECU in for football only because of what terms they are willing to endure...?


Army and especially Navy have continually said that they do NOT want to be part of the BE. I think an arragement could have been made if BC was still in the conference - maybe some sort of 4/4 (army plays 4 (2 H, 2 A) and navy plays the other 4, then they switch). Not going to happen now. This would have fit into the regional nature of the break away BE FB.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 13, 2009 7:13 am 
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finiteman wrote:
UofL07 wrote:
Adding a school because of a coach is the worst reason possible to add a school to the conference.


Cincinnati?

I have often wondered if they would have been tapped over Memphis if the Bob Huggins incident happened a year earlier. I think in the case of sports like basketball, the coach IS the program. What are you going to do?


Presidents know that coaches come and go but there has to be the committment from the university to support the programs in tough times.

However, having said that I will certainly admit that it certainly didn't hurt but Cincy had many other things that appealed to the BE. They showed a serious committment to improving their academic and athletics. Zimpher wanted to increase Cincys academic and athletic stature. Look at how much construction went on there for the past 10 years or so including Varsity Village.

Cincy also fit in the the nature of what the BE wanted to become. At the time, BE FB wanted to split and they would essentially have two quads - the Ohio Valley quad (WVu, Pitt, UC, UL) and the NE quad (BC, Ru, SU, UConn). UC also brought with them an instant rival in UL and with the proximity to Pitt and WVu, it was hoped that they would develop rivalries with Pitt and WVu.

Time and circumstance said that Cincy was the better option at that time. They seem to be a really good addition to the conference in the area where it needs help - FB. I certainly don't have any complaints about the 'new guys'. They certainly have pulled their own weight. Now, Pitt and SU need to step up.


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 06, 2009 6:50 pm 
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The BE already has enough schools in states not always considered "East". Memphis would be a poor choice for BE expansion, I'm holding out for them (and eventually, Louisville and South Florida) joining the SEC.


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