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Big East Expansion, The New New Big East And The Big Finish

If you squint, kinda looks like The Rent, right? (Photo by Otto Kitsinger III/Getty Images)
If you squint, kinda looks like The Rent, right? (Photo by Otto Kitsinger III/Getty Images)
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Brian: The Big East could be adding new members as early as next week. The New York Times' Pete Thamel reports that the conference may soon be extending invitations to Boise State, Navy and Air Force as football-only members, and Central Florida, Houston and Southern Methodist

Under the Big East plans now being considered, Boise State, Air Force and Navy would enter the conference as football-only members. Houston, S.M.U. and Central Florida would be added in all sports. Although the potential addition of those programs would dilute the league's strength in basketball, it would add the television markets and recruiting bases in Houston, Dallas and Orlando, Fla.

This will push the number of football playing schools to 12, joining Connecticut, Rutgers, Cincinnati, Louisville, South Florida and West Virginia. It will also give the Big East an opportunity to split into two divisions (to somewhat combat the awkward geography that Boise State and Air Force would create) and host a Championship Game.

Meanwhile, East Carolina, who has been stumping for a Big East invite harder than UConn has been stumping for the ACC, seems like they'll be left at the altar. Or maybe the Big East is keeping ECU in its back pocket just in case the SEC or Big 12 poaches either West Virginia or Louisville.

It is somewhat ironic that back in 2005 -- BC's first season in the ACC -- the Eagles plummeted down the ACC bowl pecking order and were disappointed to be shipped off to Boise to play on the blue turf. In the very near future, Big East teams may have to travel to Idaho to play on the blue turf every other season.

So how you like the new, new Big East for football? Is there now any doubt that Boston College's decision to leave the conference back in 2004 was the absolute right decision back then? Your thoughts?

Jeff: Just because our football team is completely irrelevant in the conference and of course nationally six weeks into the season means you have to ask me questions a kindergartner could answer? Of course there is no doubt now that BC made the right move back then. If some people had doubts prior to this season - fine. You could have made a somewhat intelligent argument that BC playing in the Big East still would some how have been better for the program and for fans. Mainly, they would have had a better chance of heading to a BCS bowl game.

But now that Syracuse and Pitt are in the ACC, you certainly can't make any geographics argument anymore. And with the Big East getting Boise State and Air Force from across the country? C'mon. And with them Navy and UCF? We recently scheduled a home and home series with UCF in a bind. Navy we used to schedule 2-for-1s with. Why would we suddenly be excited about those teams joining the conference?

The Big East is going to have to hold their breath every time a BCS contract is up that the other power conferences don't force out their automatic bid. With the remaining Conference USA and Mountain West schools joining to make one conference, it might be more appealing to the BCS to swap the Big East's auto bid with the Mount USA Conference. They won't do that if Boise State continues to perform as a top 10 team, but if they drop off, it could happen. The Big East has West Virginia and Boise State. If any other team makes the BCS game then sponsors shoot themselves.

Big Finish

Brian: Boston College placed just two players on Phil Steele's midseason All-ACC teams, the lowest total in the conference. Surprised?

Jeff: Not at all. I would not have been completely shocked if it were Kuechly only.


Jeff: What did you think of the Eagles on the ice last night?

Brian: They had their chances but came up short. Really looking forward to this season though. Think they are going to be a fun team to watch.


Brian: Mark Blaudschun writes that the Eagles aren't as bad as their record indicates. Agree?

Jeff: Agreed. Their record is absolutely awful. They are only sub par to bad.


Jeff: With BC football off this week, what game are you paying closest attention to tomorrow?

Brian: To be honest, I think I'm taking the week off from college football. The first half of the season has beat me down.


Brian: Through six games, Kuechly is on pace to break the NCAA's single season tackle record. Does he do it?

Jeff: Yes, will anyone be at the game he does it in though? I say no. For his sake hopefully he does it at Notre Dame.


Jeff: Over at Shakin the Southland they said in their film review that Rettig "got the s*** beat out of him." Could you summarize it any better yourself?

Brian: Uhh, no.


Brian: Last one. At the midpoint of the season, who you got in the ACC Championship Game in December?

Jeff: I'm not going to go against the Hokies until they lose to a Coastal team, so Virginia Tech-Clemson.


Pick 5


Miami at North Carolina (-3)
Florida State at Duke (+14)
Clemson (-8.5) at Maryland
Georgia Tech (-7.5) at Virginia
Virginia Tech at Wake Forest (+7)


Michigan at Michigan State (-3)
Utah at Pittsburgh (-6)
Navy at Rutgers (-3.5)
South Florida (-7.5) at Connecticut
Virginia Tech (-7) at Wake Forest