Late last week it seemed like the Catholic Seven were set to break away from the Big East this summer and take the conference's name with them. That's still not final as the two factions continue to negotiate the cost of the earlier exit and the value of the Big East name, but Mark Blaudschun over at A Jersey Guy did some back of the envelope calculations and it came out looking pretty good for UConn. Starting with the fact that the Big East has about $100 million to play with and a source's tip that they offered the Seven between $10 and $15 million of that, Blaudschun came up with this:
The new Big East schools that will be part of the Big East football league next season-SMU, Houston, Memphis, Central Florida and Temple will receive approximately $1 million each, which reduces the total by another $5 million down to 80 million.
New members committed to join the Big East in 2014 such as Tulane and East Carolina and Navy which is scheduled to join in 2015 (in football only) could also receive a payment if they honor their commitment , which should reduce the total to 77 million.
The Big East office will then take an operating cost fee of another $5 million, which will reduce the total to approximately 72 million, which will then be divided evenly between Cincinnati, UConn and South Florida.
Now, the key here is that none of this is final (Blaudschun added that the Seven counted the $15 million proposal by asking for $35 million), but if the final deal winds up being anywhere close to what Blaudschun is hearing, that could mean a payout for UConn (and Cincinnati and USF) somewhere in the $20 to $25 million range, which isn't a bad chunk of change.
It's far from a long term solution -- Rutgers is expecting to make more than that every year when they join the Big Ten -- but it could provide a decent cushion to support UConn in the short term. Sure, I'd trade every single penny of it for an invitation to the ACC (and in the end UConn might have to end up doing just that if they get an invite to go elsewhere), but for now it's nice to have the pennies at all.