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Updated: Big East, Memphis reportedly to announce membership Wednesday

Marshall v Memphis Getty Images

UPDATED 5:35 p.m. ET: Brett McMurphy has updated his original story to say that Memphis has accepted an invitation to join the Big East in 2013 in all sports. The school has announced a press conference for Wednesday. Wonder what that could be?


Well, it’s certainly not the SEC, but you have to have a backup plan, right?


Long rumored to be a potential candidate for the Big East in expansion, a new report now has Memphis and the Big East coming close to making it all but official. CBS Sports’ Brett McMurphy, one of the go-to guys for all things realignment and the Big East, reports that Memphis and the Big East are in “the final stages of negotiation” to make the Tigers a full-sport member as soon as 2013.

Memphis would join Houston, SMU and Central Florida as the other Conference USA members to be plucked by the Big East in the latest round of realignment if McMurphy’s report indeed comes to fruition. Other members to come aboard are Boise State and San Diego State in 2013, and Navy in 2015; the latter three would be football-only members.

The news of Navy and now Memphis joining the Big East — it should be noted, of course, that neither the Big East nor Memphis has yet to comment on the report — comes as West Virginia appears to be leaving the Big East this year and joining the Big 12, as evident by the Mountaineers dropping Florida State, an extra non-conference game, off the 2012 schedule. The Big 12’s schedule has yet to be made public, but word is already beginning to circulate that WVU will take over Missouri’s schedule.

If WVU is able to leave for the Big 12 this year, that would open up the door for Pitt and Syracuse to bolt for the ACC before the 27-month waiting period ends. McMurphy reports, though, that the two current Big East schools would likely negotiate a 2013 exit. If that ends up being the case, the Big East would have 11 football members in 2013.

As it is with most realignment news, there are a lot of moving parts that usually take longer to complete than at the rate they’re reported. The Memphis addition, if true, would make sense. Big East commissioner John Marinatto has stated previously  that the ultimate goal for Big East football is to get to 12 members and have a conference championship game, even as the conference is in the middle of losing three of its members.

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8 Responses to “Updated: Big East, Memphis reportedly to announce membership Wednesday”
  1. helenh777 says: Feb 7, 2012 2:32 PM

    I for one am anxiously awaiting news that this is over. I am so tired of hearing how if this happens and if that happens. Just get it done.

    Florida State can help themselves and the Big East by playing one of them in the Mountaineer’s place. Obviously they need to play another team.

    By the way it really is sad that FSU want’s people to believe they can not find anyone to play them. Wow. Are they saying they are so bad, noone will stoop that low. Or maybe they think they are too good to play the Big East. If that is the case, I hate to tell you your record does not say the same. You have Pittsburg, Cincinnati, Rutgers, Syracuse, and Louisville to name a few. Pick one or admit that you just want to take a day off and get paid to do so.
    I sure am glad we decided to keep Coach Stewart instead of getting the so called better guy from FSU. It was much better waiting until the best guy was available.
    The Mountaineers have beaten Maryland, VaTech, Miami, N.C., Ga. Tech, and Clemson. We have nothing to prove to the ACC. It is just time to move on.

  2. thegamecocker says: Feb 7, 2012 2:52 PM

    Great! We unload one pathetic academic institution for one that has an even worse academic perception. OMG let’s get Rutgers the hell out of this conference and into a more respectable setting. Memphis!!! REALLY!!!! Memphis……what’s next: Bline Jr College in Texas?!?!

  3. fcmlefty1 says: Feb 7, 2012 3:05 PM

    Kind of thought this might be the way it happens. Makes sense for basketball, and also protects the territory when Louisville inevitably jumps to the Big 12.

  4. latrobe21 says: Feb 7, 2012 3:55 PM


    I know that there are no roads in your neck of Appalachia and, therefore, no road signs. No geography books, maps or newspapers, either, I’m sure. So I’ll give you the benefit of doubt and help you. Please, when mentioning Pittsburgh in your posts, spell the name correctly. Thank you.

  5. thefiesty1 says: Feb 7, 2012 3:59 PM

    The BE is trying to pull another one out of the hat. They’ll take anybody to attempt to stay relevant in football. It’s not gona happen. They should just drop down to a lower division and get it over with.

  6. blakebuchanan87 says: Feb 7, 2012 4:44 PM

    If this happens, will FedEx CEO still pony up the money ($10 mill I think?) that he said he would give to any BCS conference that took Memphis?

  7. mhalt99 says: Feb 7, 2012 5:19 PM

    thegamecocker says:

    enjoy it while you can….the reality is that christie isn’t the only one looking to cut state funding for universities……going to be a whole lot of public institutions going way down in the rankings once they stop trying to be harvard and get back to their core mission of good (not world class) education at an affordable price. Just look at California…they have what the #2 & #3 public schools in Cal and UCLA….look at the reality they are facing.

  8. thegamecocker says: Feb 7, 2012 8:02 PM


    Unfortunately you make a good point. Our only hope is that RU gain admittance to either the Big 10 or ACC. These conferences have a lot of TV dollars that can preserve RU’s superior education credentials.

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