Conference Realignment: Now That They Voted, What's Next For the Big East?

Johnathan CaceCorrespondent IOctober 3, 2011

Conference Realignment: Now That They Voted, What's Next For the Big East?

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    The ACC has voted Pitt and Syracuse into the ACC, and it has started a likely chain reaction throughout the college football landscape. The biggest changes are happening in the conference they left.

    The Big East unanimously approved conference expansion yesterday, and that will be absolutely necessary in order to have any hope in keeping the conference together.

    So what happens for the league? Read on to find out.

Temple and ECU Get in

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    Temple and East Carolina have already applied to join the conference and at this point, that should be enough to get them into it.

    Temple used to be in the Big East, but was kicked out. That should be an awkward welcome back.

    East Carolina is not great at many things but they do bring some of the North Carolina market, which is one of the most important things to consider in conference expansion.

More Schools Apply

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    In order for the Big East to remain relevant, they will have to get up to at least 12 teams, likely 14, and have a conference championship game for football.

    Some schools rumored or assumed to be interested in the league are Memphis, Navy, Air Force and Boise State. It would also make sense for Villanova and/or Georgetown, who are already members of the conference in basketball, to join the FBS ranks. They can’t be much worse at football than Memphis.

Work on Keeping Current Members Home

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    It was rumored last week that current Big East members Cincinnati, West Virginia, Louisville and TCU would all be leaving for the Big 12 along with BYU, but those rumors seem to have faded.

    Still though, keeping those members in the league will be tough, and that kind of speculation does not help anyone’s cause. The Big East will lobby heavily to keep everyone where they are. It will have to in order to survive all of this conference expansion.