BCS Realignment: Why UConn Could Be a Part of Big Ten Expansion
Let the fire sale begin with Nebraska deciding to make the jump to the Big Ten. This has the potential to forever change the landscape of college athletics. Conference expansion talks are only going to get hotter and let's just say all schools: North, South, East and West will be on the table.
Let me tell you why UConn will indeed end up a member of the Big Ten.
First off, the Pac-10 is going to expand to 16 teams. When it takes the likes of Texas and Oklahoma along with the other big guns from the Big 12, they will have a mega-conference to say the least.
Right now let's say Notre Dame decides to keep their independence. The Big Ten is probably looking at options of 12 or 16 teams, and if they decided to go to 16, UConn is a real possibility.
Say Missouri follows Nebraska to the Big Ten, that still leaves three open spots. Of course if UConn moves it will be a package deal and the four teams could move that bring the most to the table are Syracuse, Rutgers, Pittsburgh and UConn.
This would be a monumental shift in what ultimately could be the death of the Big East. If the Big Ten comes knocking on UConn's door they have to answer and run with the offer as fast as they can.
In the world of College Athletics it is all about the money. UConn would certainly be able to cash-in on the opportunity of joining the Big Ten. These talks have been speculation for the last few months, but Nebraska is now finally the first domino to fall.
Now, I'm sure many of you have never been to UConn country. Let's just say it is not in your ideal area set in the scenic hills of northeastern Connecticut. Storrs is basically a little city in itself where the school is located.
That said, the University of Connecticut has grown into one of the top public universities in all of New England. It has become heavily involved in different areas of research and was just awarded a multi-million dollar expansion and renovation plan for the Health Center located in Farmington.
There is a lot of construction going on around the campus as new buildings are built to replace the outdated. UConn is rapidly becoming a state-of-the art 21st century campus in all areas.
Its level within academia is gradually becoming more like that of Michigan, Ohio State or Illinois. The move to the Big Ten is exactly what UConn needs.
For example, look at the location—with respect to television deals it is situated right in-between New York and Boston. It would immediately improve both markets and bring coverage to areas of the Northeast. The exposure is an A+.
UConn currently has the most dominant women's basketball program. Thanks in part to Geno Auriemma the tradition and success he has had at UConn has made him a national figure. It would be great to see UConn bring that toughness and competition out to the Mid-West.
Moving forward, the men's basketball team is only a year removed from a Final Four appearance. Jim Calhoun has two national championships and basically built UConn basketball from scratch.
Having the chance to play Indiana, Michigan State and Ohio State year in and year out would be a great sight to see.
The greatest boon of such a move would belong to the football program. Randy Edsall has been building this UConn program for the last twelve years. If they move to the Big Ten Edsall's spot for the near future would in all likelihood be guaranteed.
Not to mention UConn football has been very successful in its first ten years against BCS competition. They are no joke, and many analysts are predicting they finish in the top three of the Big East conference this year and should contend for the title.
I for one would love to see this jump happen. Not just as a fan but as a student at the University of Connecticut. When Boston College, Va. Tech and Miami jumped to the ACC, I felt that a piece of the Big East was lost forever.
It is time to move on and disperse into different regions and conferences. Of course there are critics out there that say you can't just disband the Big East and that UConn doesn't bring enough to the table for the Big Ten.
I strongly disagree and believe that UConn will become a member of the Big Ten in the near future as universities all around start to join different conferences.
Stay tuned. It sure is going to get interesting. The BCS conferences are going to see a shift in teams that could do the same damage as an earthquake.
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