Whoever assumes the role of new Big East commissioner will have one of the most difficult jobs in college athletics.
Because according to an ESPN.com report, Louisville athletic director Tom Jurich has told the Big East board of directors that the Cardinals plan on eventually leaving, citing their desire to move onto the Big 12 or the ACC. Of course, Louisville was a strong candidate to become a member of the Big 12 last year but lost out to West Virginia. The same report also states that Connecticut privately would like to join the ACC along with Notre Dame.
ICONCould Charlie Strong and Louisville be leaving the Big East in the near future?
Whether or not the Big 12 would be interested in expanding after adding TCU and West Virginia is unclear. Of course, new Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby said last week that if expansion helps the Big 12 advance its agenda then the league would “at least consider” adding new members.
Interim Big East commissioner Joe Bailey said he expects a new permanent commissioner to be named in roughly three months and that he's not a candidate for the position.
Despite the league adding new members such as Boise State, Temple, San Diego State and Memphis as well as a new television contract being negotiated in the fall, the Big East could find itself in quite a quandary if Louisville and other members look to bolt with the conference landscapes across the country always being fluid.
Many believe that Notre Dame, no matter how publicly committed to independence in football and the Big East in all other sports, must begin reevaluating its future with the Big East constantly in turmoil.
Losing Louisville and Connecticut would be a huge blow to the basketball side of things for the Big East. Even with the league eventually not being as powerful as it once was when Syracuse and Pittsburgh move onto the ACC, the league will still survive as long as the Cardinals and Huskies remain committed. But if those two teams bolt, one would think that Big East basketball could be in trouble as well.
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