Big East Conference Basketball Is Dead

By Ben Grimaldi
Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports

College basketball as we know it is going by the wayside. The Big East Conference, once the most powerful conference in college basketball will likely cease to exist as the seven non-football playing schools are expected to split from the conference.

Providence, Georgetown, Seton Hall, Villanova, DePaul, St. John’s and Marquette will likely be leaving the Big East and will pursue a new conference alignment with other basketball only schools such as Xavier, Butler, Creighton, St. Louis and Dayton.

So the days of the best college basketball tournament on the planet will soon be over. The days of mid-March and the electricity of Madison Square Garden and rivalry games between Big East powerhouses is done. College football has doomed Big East basketball and the best conference in the golden era of college basketball is dead.

The loser in all of this is college basketball. The money from college football and the television contracts that come with it have ruined the landscape of college athletics for everyone. Wait, I’m sorry, as we heard from the Rutgers president and athletic director a few weeks ago it’s about meeting school’s academic equals!

What a bunch or trash! Because the academic reputation of schools like Georgetown, Villanova and Providence College have ever been questioned?

However, the bottom line is that what these seven catholic schools are doing makes perfect sense. Forming new basketball only conference and adding schools like Xavier and Butler will allow them to keep a high level of competition. It also spreads the area of recruiting and television markets from the east coast to middle America in order to entice a television contract they need in order to be relevant.

Big East basketball has been dying for a few years now and it’s the saddest thing I’ve ever seen in college sports. No conference in any sport has the history, tradition or passion that can rival what Big East basketball had during its tenure. It was the best basketball conference in the history of college athletics and I won’t forget how I grew up with it.

But goodbye Syracuse-Georgetown, so long St. John’s-UConn; college football has spoken and they’ve decided to ruin everything that’s good about college sports. The seven catholic schools are doing what needs to be done because they’ve been left with no other options.

It’s been great to watch but Big East basketball is dead. All I ask is one thing, don’t invite any of the “football” schools to the funeral. They don’t deserve to mourn.

you can contact or follow Ben on twitter @BenGrimaldi  

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