The seven non-football members of the Big East are expected to pull out - maybe as soon as next week - leaving a rump conference constituted of basically members of Conference USA, circa 2004. While the BCS likely will keep the Big East as an AQ conference in 2013, that'll simply mark the end of its football relevance.
Even if nothing else changes, by the 2014 season, only one of the Big East's seven founding members - Connecticut - will still be in the conference. In fact, UConn will be the only member at the end of the 2004 season that will still remain in the Big East. Of the 12 teams currently expected to play a Big East schedule in 2014, eight used to play in Conference USA, two in the Mountain West, plus Temple, a one-time Big East football member that was invited back in after getting booted.
OK, take a deep breath and let your head stop spinning. Here's our best guess for what the major conferences might look like by 2014-15:
- Big Ten (16 teams): Add Rutgers, Maryland, Virginia, Kansas
- ACC (14 teams): Lose Maryland, Virginia, Florida State; add Pittsburgh, Syracuse, Louisville, Cincinnati, UConn
- Big 12 (10 teams): Lose Kansas; add Florida State
- Pac-12 (12 teams): No change
- SEC (14 teams): No change
- Mountain West (12 teams): Add Boise State, San Diego State, Utah State, San Jose State
- Big East (8 teams): Temple, South Florida, Central Florida, Memphis, SMU, Houston, Tulane, East Carolina