Hello SMU. - Ronald Martinez
The Big East has released its 2013 football schedule, but more realignment is threatening the conference's core.
The Big East has announced its 2013 football schedule, but with it comes news that the very foundation of the league is crumbling as the basketball-only schools are considering making a clean break from the conference.
Let's start with the football: UConn, which will be in the conference's East Division, will host Louisville, Rutgers, San Diego State and USF. The Huskies will travel to UCF, Cincinnati, SMU and Temple. The games against Temple, San Diego State and SMU will be UConn's games against the West Division. UConn is also slated to host Towson, Maryland and Michigan, while travelling to Buffalo. You can make your own schedule predictions in the comments, but I'm guessing UConn probably goes 4-8, or something similar with that schedule. I would not bet on the Huskies making a bowl.
The nice thing for UConn is that the relative amount of travel they'll be doing isn't bad. Here's a hand breakdown from SBNation with everyone else's schedules and travel distances.
Now back to the basketball disaster. Here's Mark Blaudschun from the piece I linked to up top:
In what could be the first step towards the collapse of the Big East football/basketball structure, officials of the 7 non-football playing Big East basketball schools held a meeting in New York on Sunday to discuss breaking off on their own. According to sources familiar with the talks, the conference included not only athletic directors, but Presidents and Big East commissioner Mike Aresco as well.
So yeah, that's not ideal. Nothing is decided yet -- it looks like it's going to come down to whatever TV offer Aresco can get for the Big East and if that seems like it'll be bigger than what the Catholic schools can get on their own. Furthermore, if they do decide to leave, a later Blaudschun post indicates A) they would get to keep the conference name and automatic bid to the NCAA tournament and B) wouldn't have to pay any exit fees.
If that happened you'd have to assume UConn would wind up in this twisted monstrosity of a conference the Big East has tried to become, but instead of having regular basketball games with Georgetown, Villanova and St. John's, they'd play a home-and-home with Tulane every year. Awesome.
Oh, and since the hits keep coming, the new playoff system means that the five power conferences are going to make at least $75 million more a year than the Big East, and quite possibly more than that.