Realignment revisited - The beginning of the end for Big East football (ESPN - Adelson)

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Painful memories... As if the summer weather hasn't been dreary enough, you have to remind us of the realignment debacle.

A few of observations:

1. The Providence College-centric leadership of the old BE ultimately caught up to us. PC didn't even have baseball, let alone football, yet their administrators were running the Big East when it collapsed. I think poor John Marinatto (R.I.P.) was totally outmaneuvered in the spring and summer of 2011 when the ACC started its second poaching foray.

2. We didn't help UConn's cause in realignment or in securing an invite to the ACC when our then A.G. sued Miami, BC , the ACC and many individuals connected therewith during the first realignment round in the early 2000s. BC's A.D. at the time said we created a lot of ill-will and it wasn't easily forgotten or forgiven.

3. We got nowhere when our A.D. was just "monitoring" the situation in 2012 while Louisville's A.D. was putting on a full-court press to replace Maryland in the ACC.

4. So we now are the only State university in the Big East. Also, we are the only old Big East football program that is not in a conference and is masquerading as a D-1 independent.

Sadly, with us in the Big East, football is screwed. (Doesn't it seem like ages ago when we beat Syracuse five straight years, made bowl games and filled Rentschler?) And I think the jury is out for the Big East's long term impact on BB. I hope we at least can thrive in that regard.
At least we are in right conference for hockey. (And that's all I'll say about that right now!)
 

CL82

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2. We didn't help UConn's cause in realignment or in securing an invite to the ACC when our then A.G. sued Miami, BC , the ACC and many individuals connected therewith during the first realignment round in the early 2000s. BC's A.D. at the time said we created a lot of ill-will and it wasn't easily forgotten or forgiven
Did he? I don’t remember that. Do you have a link?

Regardless, Pittsburgh was a plaintiff in that suit and is now sitting in the ACC. That would seem to undermine the argument that UConn being a plaintiff blackballed it.

3. We got nowhere when our A.D. was just "monitoring" the situation in 2012 while Louisville's A.D. was putting on a full-court press to replace Maryland in the ACC
Agree. If I recall correctly Susan Herbst reached out to her tobacco road connections who assured her we had the bid. Accordingly she in the A.D. didn’t press the issue. I’m not sure that they could’ve done anything about FSU’s decision to flex its muscles within the ACC by demanding a more “traditional football power”, but it certainly was a bad look for us.
Sadly, with us in the Big East, football is screwed
That remains to be seen. We’ve yet to play a season as an independent. Certainly scheduling has been less of an issue than some expected. It seems that P5 schools are interested in playing us on a home and away basis.

And I think the jury is out for the Big East's long term impact on BB
Definitionally “the jury is still out” since we only been a part of the conference one season and that season was impacted by a worldwide pandemic, but there are a lot of indicators that look positive. recruits clearly find us more attractive as a member of the Big East and the media seems to view us more positively as well. Fans are more excited about the games than in the American and we had a pretty good run last year for our debut year.
 
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Re#2 - I think Syracuse was a Plaintiff also, but our A.G. led the charge. Gene DeFilippo of BC made a point of this. (see below - article written a year before we got snubbed in the 2011 ACC expansion.) The lawsuit was 18 years ago, but it still haunts us...


Bad Blood, Old Lawsuits Could Threaten Future of UConn Football​

By Brian F. on May 1, 2010, 8:52pm EDT 11

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It has been nearly seven years since Boston College left the Big East for the ACC, yet bad blood still remains between BC and UConn. Could this bad blood - stemming from the bitter divorce between New England’s two Division I football programs - threaten the future of Connecticut Huskies football?
Despite numerous calls by UConn to bury the hatchet and renew a New England football rivalry, Boston College Athletic Director Gene DeFilippo has refused to return the Huskies’ call. Connecticut head coach Randy Edsall, a former BC assistant coach under Tom Coughlin, has stated several times that he would love to play BC, saying that such a game would be great for New England. DeFilippo maintains that he won’t schedule the Huskies so long as he’s AD.
During a live chat hosted in 2006, DeFilippo unequivocally stated "There are no plans to play UConn in football or in basketball any time in the future."
It is clear that so long as Gene DeFilippo and school president William Leahy remain at BC, the Eagles and Huskies won’t play each other in either football or basketball. But just how did BC become so hostile towards its neighbor to the south?
Rewind the tape back to 2003. On October 12, the presidents of the 11 program Atlantic Coast Conference, having already raided the Big East by adding Miami and Virginia Tech, voted to add Boston College as the league’s twelfth member. BC’s decision to leave the Big East for the ACC was met with much disappointment from the Big East programs left behind.
One program in particular, the University of Connecticut, decided that mere disappointment wasn’t enough. Led by Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal, the remaining Big East member schools - Rutgers, Pittsburgh, West Virginia and Connecticut - brought suit against the ACC, BC and Miami for improper disclosure of confidential information and conspiring to weaken the Big East.
At the time, the University of Connecticut had made critical investments in their school’s football program to support their move to college football’s top division in 2000. These investments included a $91.2 million dollar investment in Rentschler Field, a new 40,000 seat, off-campus football stadium. Blumenthal claimed that BC and Miami’s jump to the ACC would result in a write-down on these investments and a loss of TV broadcast revenue.
The lawsuit against the ACC was dismissed on jurisdictional grounds, while BC was eventually exonerated by a declaratory judgment from the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts. Even though the lawsuits were dismissed in court, a secret out-of-court settlement was later reached. It was disclosed that each remaining Big East school received $1 million, after the Hartford Courant filed a Freedom of Information request to obtain the settlement documents. The $1 million figure hardly covered the plaintiff’s collective expenses incurred from over two years of litigation.

While Blumenthal’s lawsuit against Boston College, Miami and the ACC never went to trial, his decision to bring suit could have a profound impact on the future of UConn athletics.
Fast forward to present day. The Big Ten Conference has been shopping the idea of conference expansion for several months, a move that could trigger a tectonic shift in college football’s conference alignment. What first started as idle offseason speculation has quickly snowballed into serious consideration on the part of the Big Ten to expand the conference from anywhere from one to five programs.
The problem for UConn is that, even under the most ambitious Big Ten Conference expansion proposals - 5 team expansion to a 16 team mega-conference - UConn hasn’t made the Big Ten’s short list.
In fact, if the Big Ten decides that expanding to 14 or 16 teams is in their best interest, this likely means the death of the Big East as a football conference. High on the Big Ten’s expansion wish list are Rutgers, Pittsburgh and Syracuse. If all three of these Big East programs decide to make the move to the Big Ten, UConn could quickly find themselves without a home in college football.
In order to protect their football investment, UConn would be left with precious few options in terms of joining another conference. Big East football would likely cease to exist, and the only remaining BCS conferences that represent any sort of geographical fit would be the ACC or the SEC. Less desirable options would include joining Conference USA, the MAC or becoming a football independent. However, joining a lesser conference such as Conference USA or the MAC would prove costly to UConn, as these avenues would preclude the Huskies from profiting from the financial windfall that comes from being a member of one of college football’s six BCS conferences.
It’s entirely plausible that in a scenario where the Big Ten poaches three current Big East programs, UConn could find itself going back to the ACC, hat in hand, asking to join the conference they once sued.
When the ACC decided to expand back in 2003, the league required that two-thirds of the school presidents vote in favor of expansion. If UConn decided to pursue joining the ACC, it seems unlikely that they would garner the necessary votes to be admitted to the conference; especially with the bad blood between BC and UConn stemming from the Blumenthal lawsuit.
Without a BCS conference home, the long-term viability of BC’s neighboring New England football program would be very much in doubt. Blumenthal’s decision to sue the ACC could ultimately cost the UConn football program much more than the legal fees incurred in the original lawsuit.


Re: #3 Herbst had great SEC connections. I didn't think she was particularly connected to "Tobacco Road". In any event, Jurich went all out and LV got the nod. I think we could have been more proactive then. (like "hair on fire" pro-active...)

Re: Football

How many independents have really made it? N.D. and?

Re: BB

Well, we did it for hoops. I hope it works out!
BTW, don't get me wrong, the AAC was a conference of "misfit toys" for us. Just shows you how
Did he? I don’t remember that. Do you have a link?

Regardless, Pittsburgh was a plaintiff in that suit and is now sitting in the ACC. That would seem to undermine the argument that UConn being a plaintiff blackballed it.


Agree. If I recall correctly Susan Herbst reached out to her tobacco road connections who assured her we had the bid. Accordingly she in the A.D. didn’t press the issue. I’m not sure that they could’ve done anything about FSU’s decision to flex its muscles within the ACC by demanding a more “traditional football power”, but it certainly was a bad look for us.

That remains to be seen. We’ve yet to play a season as an independent. Certainly scheduling has been less of an issue than some expected. It seems that P5 schools are interested in playing us on a home and away basis.


Definitionally “the jury is still out” since we only been a part of the conference one season and that season was impacted by a worldwide pandemic, but there are a lot of indicators that look positive. recruits clearly find us more attractive as a member of the Big East and the media seems to view us more positively as well. Fans are more excited about the games than in the American and we had a pretty good run last year for our debut year.

difficult the scene is right now.
 
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You don't want to be the one standing when the music stops."
That's how D-1 FB was sold to us. And we ended up being the one standing anyway. We can kill people all you want but it's obvious now we weren't going beat out Frank Leahy, Jim Brown, Tony Dorsett and Johnny Unitas.
 

CL82

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Re#2 - I think Syracuse was a Plaintiff also, but our A.G. led the charge. Gene DeFilippo of BC made a point of this. (see below - article written a year before we got snubbed in the 2011 ACC expansion.) The lawsuit was 18 years ago, but it still haunts us...


Bad Blood, Old Lawsuits Could Threaten Future of UConn Football​

By Brian F. on May 1, 2010, 8:52pm EDT 11

 TWEET SHARE PIN
It has been nearly seven years since Boston College left the Big East for the ACC, yet bad blood still remains between BC and UConn. Could this bad blood - stemming from the bitter divorce between New England’s two Division I football programs - threaten the future of Connecticut Huskies football?
Despite numerous calls by UConn to bury the hatchet and renew a New England football rivalry, Boston College Athletic Director Gene DeFilippo has refused to return the Huskies’ call. Connecticut head coach Randy Edsall, a former BC assistant coach under Tom Coughlin, has stated several times that he would love to play BC, saying that such a game would be great for New England. DeFilippo maintains that he won’t schedule the Huskies so long as he’s AD.
During a live chat hosted in 2006, DeFilippo unequivocally stated "There are no plans to play UConn in football or in basketball any time in the future."
It is clear that so long as Gene DeFilippo and school president William Leahy remain at BC, the Eagles and Huskies won’t play each other in either football or basketball. But just how did BC become so hostile towards its neighbor to the south?
Rewind the tape back to 2003. On October 12, the presidents of the 11 program Atlantic Coast Conference, having already raided the Big East by adding Miami and Virginia Tech, voted to add Boston College as the league’s twelfth member. BC’s decision to leave the Big East for the ACC was met with much disappointment from the Big East programs left behind.
One program in particular, the University of Connecticut, decided that mere disappointment wasn’t enough. Led by Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal, the remaining Big East member schools - Rutgers, Pittsburgh, West Virginia and Connecticut - brought suit against the ACC, BC and Miami for improper disclosure of confidential information and conspiring to weaken the Big East.
At the time, the University of Connecticut had made critical investments in their school’s football program to support their move to college football’s top division in 2000. These investments included a $91.2 million dollar investment in Rentschler Field, a new 40,000 seat, off-campus football stadium. Blumenthal claimed that BC and Miami’s jump to the ACC would result in a write-down on these investments and a loss of TV broadcast revenue.
The lawsuit against the ACC was dismissed on jurisdictional grounds, while BC was eventually exonerated by a declaratory judgment from the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts. Even though the lawsuits were dismissed in court, a secret out-of-court settlement was later reached. It was disclosed that each remaining Big East school received $1 million, after the Hartford Courant filed a Freedom of Information request to obtain the settlement documents. The $1 million figure hardly covered the plaintiff’s collective expenses incurred from over two years of litigation.

While Blumenthal’s lawsuit against Boston College, Miami and the ACC never went to trial, his decision to bring suit could have a profound impact on the future of UConn athletics.
Fast forward to present day. The Big Ten Conference has been shopping the idea of conference expansion for several months, a move that could trigger a tectonic shift in college football’s conference alignment. What first started as idle offseason speculation has quickly snowballed into serious consideration on the part of the Big Ten to expand the conference from anywhere from one to five programs.
The problem for UConn is that, even under the most ambitious Big Ten Conference expansion proposals - 5 team expansion to a 16 team mega-conference - UConn hasn’t made the Big Ten’s short list.
In fact, if the Big Ten decides that expanding to 14 or 16 teams is in their best interest, this likely means the death of the Big East as a football conference. High on the Big Ten’s expansion wish list are Rutgers, Pittsburgh and Syracuse. If all three of these Big East programs decide to make the move to the Big Ten, UConn could quickly find themselves without a home in college football.
In order to protect their football investment, UConn would be left with precious few options in terms of joining another conference. Big East football would likely cease to exist, and the only remaining BCS conferences that represent any sort of geographical fit would be the ACC or the SEC. Less desirable options would include joining Conference USA, the MAC or becoming a football independent. However, joining a lesser conference such as Conference USA or the MAC would prove costly to UConn, as these avenues would preclude the Huskies from profiting from the financial windfall that comes from being a member of one of college football’s six BCS conferences.
It’s entirely plausible that in a scenario where the Big Ten poaches three current Big East programs, UConn could find itself going back to the ACC, hat in hand, asking to join the conference they once sued.
When the ACC decided to expand back in 2003, the league required that two-thirds of the school presidents vote in favor of expansion. If UConn decided to pursue joining the ACC, it seems unlikely that they would garner the necessary votes to be admitted to the conference; especially with the bad blood between BC and UConn stemming from the Blumenthal lawsuit.
Without a BCS conference home, the long-term viability of BC’s neighboring New England football program would be very much in doubt. Blumenthal’s decision to sue the ACC could ultimately cost the UConn football program much more than the legal fees incurred in the original lawsuit.
Lol! Really? I can see why you didn't post a link. That was written by Brian Favat a one of the guys who started BC Interruption. I guess you couldn't find an actually source, am I right? Funny that that would be where you'd look. :confused:

In actuality then BC AD made he clear that BCU blackballed UConn from their seat in the selection committee.

DeFilippo does not deny that BC opposed the inclusion of UConn.
“We didn’t want them in,’’ he said. “It was a matter of turf. We wanted to be the New England team.’’​

I get it though. BC had lost like what 21+ games to UConn in basketball? I'm sure the thought of losing in their new conference must have been daunting. As it turns out, their ended being plenty of other schools for BC to lose to.
Re: #3 Herbst had great SEC connections. I didn't think she was particularly connected to "Tobacco Road". In any event, Jurich went all out and LV got the nod. I think we could have been more proactive then. (like "hair on fire" pro-active...)
Not that I've heard. Herbst is a Duke alumna and still has connections there.

Re: Football

How many independents have really made it? N.D. and?
BYU. Still UConn has had a lot of interest from P5 (outside of COVID) for home and aways. That bodes well. I admit that it is challenging but that did stop UConn from winning 4 natties in MBB when many expected us to be a doormat in the Old Big East or winning two conference titles in football and getting a Fiesta Bowl shot within a decade of going to D-I in football.
Re: BB

Well, we did it for hoops. I hope it works out!
BTW, don't get me wrong, the AAC was a conference of "misfit toys" for us. Just shows you how
So far so good. We're back to the tournament last season and are in preseason top 25 lists. Plus our recruiting has become much stronger. UConn in BE is a basketball brand with no one winning more conference championships, BETs and national championships in the Old Big East than Connecticut. I get that if you were an also ran school that say, had a 21 plus game losing streak against Connecticut it might not be as positive affiliation though.
 
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So Villanova screwed the Big East over twice. What the....
 

SubbaBub

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For the last time. The lawsuit was a red herring. UConn was stabbed in the back by multiple "partners" for a variety of reasons that boil down to a simple concept. While UConn was primarily interested in holding the BE together, everyone else was looking out for themselves behind their back. From the initial defectors to BC to the C7 to Pittsburgh leading to our duel to the death with Louisville (at least UL was open about the competition for the last lifeboat). Cuse gets half a point for initially sacrificing its first invitation before ultimately maneuvering for the second, then advocating against us for the last spot (so F them).

That's it, that's the list.
 
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For the last time. The lawsuit was a red herring. UConn was stabbed in the back by multiple "partners" for a variety of reasons that boil down to a simple concept. While UConn was primarily interested in holding the BE together, everyone else was looking out for themselves behind their back. From the initial defectors to BC to the C7 to Pittsburgh leading to our duel to the death with Louisville (at least UL was open about the competition for the last lifeboat). Cuse gets half a point for initially sacrificing its first invitation before ultimately maneuvering for the second, then advocating against us for the last spot (so F them).

That's it, that's the list.
I was around there for this. The above is accurate.

Cuse and Pitt were absolute scoundrels in this the second and third time around. Duke and UNC (and with that Wake and NC State) and probably Virginia wanted UConn in the ACC. But the Miami, Pitt, Syracuse, BC -- UConn's former partners -- were all a no.

The fact Louisville is in the ACC is a complete joke. They kept on marrying up, fudging finances, cheating, and eventually convinced enough people to get in.

Clemson was a hell no as was Florida State and Miami. It was the old Big East partners who screwed UConn.

It makes no sense. Syracuse and Pitt Languish in a southern conference. West Virginia has never been the same since going to the Big 12 and UConn sits as an Indy. The absolute destruction of any northeast football.

It was a weird time in college athletics. West Virginia and Pittsburgh are really northern football schools, but wanted to act like they were in the SEC. It's weird.
 

CL82

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I was around there for this. The above is accurate.

Cuse and Pitt were absolute scoundrels in this the second and third time around. Duke and UNC (and with that Wake and NC State) and probably Virginia wanted UConn in the ACC. But the Miami, Pitt, Syracuse, BC -- UConn's former partners -- were all a no.

The fact Louisville is in the ACC is a complete joke. They kept on marrying up, fudging finances, cheating, and eventually convinced enough people to get in.

Clemson was a hell no as was Florida State and Miami. It was the old Big East partners who screwed UConn.

It makes no sense. Syracuse and Pitt Languish in a southern conference. West Virginia has never been the same since going to the Big 12 and UConn sits as an Indy. The absolute destruction of any northeast football.

It was a weird time in college athletics. West Virginia and Pittsburgh are really northern football schools, but wanted to act like they were in the SEC. It's weird.
Generally agree, although I remember the details differently.

I don't think that Pitt and 'Cuse were members at the time of the Louisville expansion so they didn't have a formal vote. My understanding is that they were informally polled. Cuse affirmatively didn't want us in and Pitt had no strong opinion one way or the other.

For the Louisville move to the ACC, Tom Jurich, the Louisville AD at the time, said that "UConn wasn't "penciled in" it was in pen." I think there is a kernel of truth in that wrapped in some puffery. Herbst had reached out to relationships in the ACC and heard that we were in. FSU was still angry about the addition of "basketball schools" Syracuse and Pitt and basically flexed their muscles in favor of Louisville. The rumor at the time was that FSU and Clemson would consider a move to the Big 12 if "a football school" wasn't chosen. At the time things were unstable enough that that was a real risk. In the end I'm not sure that Herbst and Manuel could have done anything to stop that, but their being at a Mediterranean woman's hoops tournament while Jurich was in a full court press for Louisville was a bad look. After the fact a source relayed that Herbst talked to "a ton of presidents" and that Manuel talked to "basically every AD." What they heard at that time, only they know.

Athletic success has been hard to come by for the teams that left the Old Big East. Maybe that's karma for destroying the greatest basketball conference of all time. Still, financially, it paid off for them.
 
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And stability. UConn will end up in a "power conference" one day. Otherwise, we wouldn't be getting home-and-home series with P5 schools. The Rent is much more valuable an asset than many seem to think.
 
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Generally agree, although I remember the details differently.

I don't think that Pitt and 'Cuse were members at the time of the Louisville expansion so they didn't have a formal vote. My understanding is that they were informally polled. Cuse affirmatively didn't want us in and Pitt had no strong opinion one way or the other.

For the Louisville move to the ACC, Tom Jurich, the Louisville AD at the time, said that "UConn wasn't "penciled in" it was in pen." I think there is a kernel of truth in that wrapped in some puffery. Herbst had reached out to relationships in the ACC and heard that we were in. FSU was still angry about the addition of "basketball schools" Syracuse and Pitt and basically flexed their muscles in favor of Louisville. The rumor at the time was that FSU and Clemson would consider a move to the Big 12 if "a football school" wasn't chosen. At the time things were unstable enough that that was a real risk. In the end I'm not sure that Herbst and Manuel could have done anything to stop that, but their being at a Mediterranean woman's hoops tournament while Jurich was in a full court press for Louisville was a bad look. After the fact a source relayed that Herbst talked to "a ton of presidents" and that Manuel talked to "basically every AD." What they heard at that time, only they know.

Athletic success has been hard to come by for the teams that left the Old Big East. Maybe that's karma for destroying the greatest basketball conference of all time. Still, financially, it paid off for them.

UConn wasn't penned in. Everyone fell for that Jurich schtick that made him seem like a god. Guy called in favors to Mitch McConnell and he got involved. So much politics, it was ridiculous. Uconn beat Louisville that weekend when they both wanted to get into the ACC. McConnell was at the stadium and interrupted reporters to talk with jurich. It wasn't about pretzels. I wasn't at that game, but colleagues were and I talked with them shortly after. Check out the effusive praise McConnell gives Louisville and Jurich after getting into the ACC. ACC presidents vote to add Louisville

Pitt and Syracuse were already headed into ACC, maybe vote or not I can't remember but their voices carried weight. Lousiville replaced maryland.

ACC was afraid Clemson and FSU were headed to the SEC and culturally, the ACC south teams were really worried it would lose its southern identity if they added another northern program. The ACC, strategically, should have picked UConn to firm up its Northern border and Northern teams. It didn't, and lost Jersey and Maryland to the Big Ten.

The funny part out of all of this is the impact of markets is diminished with streaming. Now, you don't want big markets, you want teams with rabid fanbases that will pay for the extra content. In that scenario, UConn has a much more rabid fanbase for their sports than the teams selected ahead of them.

It shows how badly ESPN misjudged the streaming disruption. in the span of a decade, markets don't matter as much and they massively overpaid for rights fees. It's why I am no longer there. LOL. If this was now? Nebraska, UConn, Kansas and teams with rabid fanbases -- not raw cable numbers (HELLO RUTGERS) are much more valuable than previous. You want sticky content, not just a number of people paying carriage fees.

And, ESPN absolutely whiffed on streaming strategically. Luckily, they are the Mouse and were able to buy their way out of it. they bought BAMTECH so they didn't have to build the platform and bundled ESPN+ with Disney +, which let's be honest, is taking over the world because that content is a must-have over even basic cable. Disney+ is the 800-pound gorilla for all this and it will ensure the survival of ESPN as linear cable continues to lose its grip on a younger generation.

If it wasn't for MMA and Disney+ bundling, ESPN+ would be so hurt you wouldn't believe. ACC linear network makes no sense in the current environment. SEC is more like a lifestyle channel. People chant SEC and identify as SEC fans. No one identifies as ACC fans.

In fact, Big East basketball is probably the parallel brand for hoops.

ESPN made a mistake assuming big markets would bring in big money on carriage fees. All that planning around markets is bust in the current environment. Now? You need to have programing that people want to watch.

Also, I would say ESPN homogenized the experience. How awesome was big east basketball this year with Big East basketball talk, specific content only on big east during all their telecasts as well as pregame and postgame coverage. ESPN kind of went with a national approach. Terrible fan experience.
 
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And stability. UConn will end up in a "power conference" one day. Otherwise, we wouldn't be getting home-and-home series with P5 schools. The Rent is much more valuable an asset than many seem to think.
This is very true. Mid Power 5 teams like UNC, Virginia , Indiana, Syracuse etc. like the access to airport. Easy to get to new stadium with in a city and close by NYC and Boston. Virginia can't sell out its stadium playing a buy game. Why pay $1.5 million to play Middle Tennessee and lose money on the game when you can go on the road, get 300K and play UConn? In return? You play UConn at your place for $300K.

I think UConn might be in the right spot to take advantage of this dynamic in future years.
 

SubbaBub

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I thought then that CT sould have imposed a $5/mo cable tax that guranteed UConn access. Works out to about $50M/yr. Close to B1G money. CT is one of the few states that could pull it off. B1G missed out too, they could have used that money to support the extra mouth.
 

CL82

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I thought then that CT sould have imposed a $5/mo cable tax that guranteed UConn access. Works out to about $50M/yr. Close to B1G money. CT is one of the few states that could pull it off. B1G missed out too, they could have used that money to support the extra mouth.
Just curious, what’s the math on this? Five dollars a month is $60 a year and Connecticut has roughly 3,000,000 people. I’m not sure how many cable household though.
 
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But the Miami, Pitt, Syracuse, BC -- UConn's former partners -- were all a no.
What the thinking of the last 3? They would have been much better off with UConn with them. Especially Cuse and BCU.
 
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What the thinking of the last 3? They would have been much better off with UConn with them. Especially Cuse and BCU.
They thought they could pull off something similar to Texas A&M. In the dumbest ways.
 
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What the thinking of the last 3? They would have been much better off with UConn with them. Especially Cuse and BCU.
I dont know for sure. Why is/was UConn so disliked? What some media told me/ speculated was that UConn wasn't exactly easy to deal with on their way up in the 1990s-2000s. Maybe their success rubbed those teams the wrong way, or maybe UConn was just a handful to partner with.

For whatever reason, the school didn't cultivate relationships with other institutions well. This is ancient history and about 20-25 years ago. You would have thought PITT and Syracuse would have jumped at having UConn on their schedule, but they actually actively worked against them. That is insane to me considering how big the UConn and Pitt rivalries were.

Miami never wants to play UConn again in any sport it seems. That may be lawsuit, but it didn't stop Pitt from getting in as they were the actual architects of the lawsuit.

Worst part is all the people were gone when poor Warde Manuel and Susan Herbst had to deal with this.
 

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Why is/was UConn so disliked?
I suspect it may be as simple as they were looking for competitive advantage. In the early 80s UConn was neither a recruiting thread nor a game day threat. By the time Syracuse bailed we were the best of the conference. BCU AD came out Gene DeFillipo and said as much in a interview.
 
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The funny part out of all of this is the impact of markets is diminished with streaming. Now, you don't want big markets, you want teams with rabid fanbases that will pay for the extra content. In that scenario, UConn has a much more rabid fanbase for their sports than the teams selected ahead of them.

It shows how badly ESPN misjudged the streaming disruption. in the span of a decade, markets don't matter as much and they massively overpaid for rights fees. It's why I am no longer there. LOL. If this was now? Nebraska, UConn, Kansas and teams with rabid fanbases -- not raw cable numbers (HELLO RUTGERS) are much more valuable than previous. You want sticky content, not just a number of people paying carriage fees.
This makes me think of how UConn fans basically forced cable providers to get SNY on their packages when they started carrying UConn games. Same thing with how everyone is willing to pay for the sports package to get CBS Sports. Heck, everyone spent hours teaching their parents/grandparents how to get/use ESPN+ to watch the Women's games before we moved to the BE. (Sorry I know that is a total stereotype of our WBB fans but I know many of you were in that spot).

UConn fans want to watch their team and will pay for streaming access. I agree with you John, markets mean nothing now. It's all about fanbases.
 

nelsonmuntz

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ESPN engineered both raids on the Big East because it thought it could save a few bucks by carving out the "most attractive" teams and putting them in the ACC so ESPN would not have to pay two conferences full price. It backfired badly on ESPN. Looking back on the 16 team Big East from 2011, where did everyone go:

ACC: Pitt, Syracuse, Louisville, Notre Dame (hoops plus some football)
Big 10: Rutgers
Big 12: WVU
New Big East (C7): Villanova, Seton Hall, Georgetown, Providence, St. Johns, Depaul, Marquette, eventually UConn

Left behind: Cincinnati, USF, UConn football

The raid worked out great for all but USF, Cincinnati, and UConn football. And of course ESPN, who ended up paying more money for less content than they would have gotten if they had just paid a fair contract to the Big East.
 
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Painful memories... As if the summer weather hasn't been dreary enough, you have to remind us of the realignment debacle.

A few of observations:

1. The Providence College-centric leadership of the old BE ultimately caught up to us. PC didn't even have baseball, let alone football, yet their administrators were running the Big East when it collapsed. I think poor John Marinatto (R.I.P.) was totally outmaneuvered in the spring and summer of 2011 when the ACC started its second poaching foray.

2. We didn't help UConn's cause in realignment or in securing an invite to the ACC when our then A.G. sued Miami, BC , the ACC and many individuals connected therewith during the first realignment round in the early 2000s. BC's A.D. at the time said we created a lot of ill-will and it wasn't easily forgotten or forgiven.

3. We got nowhere when our A.D. was just "monitoring" the situation in 2012 while Louisville's A.D. was putting on a full-court press to replace Maryland in the ACC.

4. So we now are the only State university in the Big East. Also, we are the only old Big East football program that is not in a conference and is masquerading as a D-1 independent.

Sadly, with us in the Big East, football is screwed. (Doesn't it seem like ages ago when we beat Syracuse five straight years, made bowl games and filled Rentschler?) And I think the jury is out for the Big East's long term impact on BB. I hope we at least can thrive in that regard.
At least we are in right conference for hockey. (And that's all I'll say about that right now!)
Not to mention that our #1 brand, men's basketball, was under a personal attack by the NCAA during ACC round #2.
 
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I suspect it may be as simple as they were looking for competitive advantage. In the early 80s UConn was neither a recruiting thread nor a game day threat. By the time Syracuse bailed we were the best of the conference. BCU AD came out Gene DeFillipo and said as much in a interview.
BCU Ad DeFilipo literally said BCU didn't want UConn in the ACC because they BCU wanted to be new England's team. He was practically gloating about keeping Uconn out during the interview since he sat on the ACC expansion committee.

Fast forward to today, and the reality is no one give a crap about BCU, not even in Boston. BCU being New England's team is still a pipe dream.

BCU and UConn could have worked with each other to promote sports in the New England, but BCU was petty, conniving, and a back stabber. It would be the ultimate karma to see this school get tossed to the side where they belong.
 
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