What can be said about the Big East Conference that already hasn’t be written countless times? Inept, oblivious and near death are just some of the adjectives that can be used while talking about the current state of the Big East. Well, now there is a new one that I don’t think anyone saw coming, second fiddle to the Mountain West Conference.
Details have started to emerge as to why the Big East failed to keep the Boise State Broncos from leaving the conference before it ever stepped foot in it. Apparently the Big East, which must be financially strapped due to no picture-box contract, was unwilling to match the terms the Mountain West put out for the Broncos. So now it is painfully obvious, the Big East can’t even keep up with a known stepping stone conference.
Big East commissioner Mike Aresco had a phone interview with the associate press yesterday and had this to say:
“We worked hard with Boise. We explored a lot of different ways to keep them. No question. Ultimately, we were unwilling to do the things they wanted. Our membership was unwilling to make the deal the Mountain West made with them.”
With all the transition the Big East has been, and continues to, going through it was thought that Boise State would be their flagship football program. But instead, Aresco and the Big East members decided that the university wanted to much and weren’t willing to go to the lengths that the Mountain West was to lure them to come and stay for a while.
Another Mountain West school, the San Diego State Aztecs are also reconsidering joining the conference. But don’t worry about Aresco, he clearly sees a sliver lining in this whole debacle. Aresco talked about the great acquisitions the Big East has made and how they want to stay together. This is Aresco talking about something called “Texas” schools. Or what normal people call, second to third rate programs.
“This group does want to stay together. Everybody wants to stay in. We’ve had strong support from the Texas schools.”
We know that Aresco can’t be honest and say what he really wants to. Give the man some truth serum and he’ll ultimately tell you that this isn’t what he signed up for. That his TV executive job was for less stressful and he would have an easier time keeping Charlie Sheen on the straight and narrow.
When Aresco took over the day to day duties as the Big East commissioner, he knew the conference was in a very transitional phase and that immediate action needed to be taken. Well instead he decided to be reactionary and the conference is near death thanks to it. If the Big East was really trying to stay a power conference they wouldn’t let the Mountain West outbid them when it came to a team as sought after as Boise State.
I don’t have ESP nor do I claim to be a fortune-teller. But I’ll tell you this, I can see the Big East’s future. It’s one of death, a smell only comparable to rat feces, with the only highlights coming from reruns on SNL.
If the conference’s goal was to sink as fast as possible, they are doing a swell job. Lost for words at this point would be an understatement. However, at the end of the day it still doesn’t matter. Because nobody who was ever really a part of the Big East will still be there after the Catholic Seven get out of dodge.
I don’t know if Aresco is the main person to blame for how quickly the Big East is falling apart or if the new members are helping drown their own new home. But with bad management comes poor decisions, and none of that results in a huge television deal, which is really the conference’s endgame at this point.
The Big East is playing second fiddle to the Mountain West…
I guess their New Year’s Resolution was to give back to conferences they once used as a breeding ground. Oh Big East, how I’m starting to hate you so much that I feel bad for you.
Joe covers the Catholic Seven for Rant Sports. For the love of Sam Cassell follow him on the social media device known as the Twitter Machine @JosephNardone