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Conference Realignment: Separating Fact From Spin In UConn's Latest Media Plea For Sympathy

Yesterday, we mentioned that some dude named Ed Diagneault, who writes for the Waterbury (CT) Republican-American, cited an anonymous source that Boston College was trying to block UConn's entry into the Atlantic Coast Conference. After Diagneault tweeted this, he backed it up with a story published in the Republican-American.

Let's dissect the three paragraphs of the article that I can read -- I really have no interest in paying to read the Waterbury Republican-American -- to separate anonymously sourced fact from spin.


"UConn President Susan Herbst was far removed from the lawsuit filed against Boston College and the Atlantic Coast Conference in 2003, but she is trying to mend those lingering wounds as she fights to put her school in the best position in the conference shuffle.

[See below] ... and when ... [see below]. Herbst has attempted to smooth that rift by ... [see below].

BC still has lingering anger about the lawsuit, filed by former Connecticut attorney general Richard Blumenthal in 2003. Among those directly sued for conspiring "to weaken the Big East" were BC Athletic Director Gene DeFilippo and ACC Commissioner John Swofford. Miami and Virginia Tech, who also left for the ACC in 2003, were not sued."

Anonymously sourced facts:

"According to sources, BC is not willing to allow UConn into the ACC without a major fight and is working to garner enough votes to block a move if ... [see above] ... it is considered. [See above] ... reaching out to BC President the Rev. William P. Leahy recently, a source said."

As for the spin, even if there is a BC block on any move by UConn, again, it has little to do with hurt feelings and past litigation. It does, however, have everything to do with BC wanting exclusive conference rights over New England. And again, this is consistent with:

-- South Florida's desire to keep Central Florida out of the Big East
-- The Texas Longhorns reportedly needing to be convinced to let TCU join the Big 12
-- The supposed "gentlemen's agreement" between Florida, Georgia and South Carolina to keep Florida State, Georgia Tech and Clemson, respectively, out of the SEC.
-- The University of Kentucky being "not cool" with Louisville joining the SEC.

Again, this situation is no different. If there is a block, it doesn't have much to do with the lawsuit, so let's all stop spinning it as such. 

One thing is clear. If UConn doesn't kill Big East football by getting that coveted ACC invite, someone else is going to finally put Big East football out of its misery. And not a moment too soon.'s Chip Brown is reporting that TCU has become the top target of the Big 12 to become team #10, replacing Texas A&M. Other schools mentioned in the report include the Big East's West Virginia Mountaineers, Cincinnati Bearcats and Louisville Cardinals