Big East Conference
|Big East Conference
|Division||Division I (non-football)|
|Members||10 (All-sports Members)|
|Sports fielded||22 (men's: 10; women's: 12)|
|Region||Northeastern and Midwestern United States|
|Headquarters||New York, New York|
|Commissioner||Val Ackerman (since 2013)|
The Big East Conference is a collegiate athletic conference that competes in NCAA Division I in all sports except football, which is not sponsored. The conference has been officially recognized as a Division I multi-sport conference, effective on August 1, 2013. Its nuclei are seven members of the original Big East Conference: DePaul University, Georgetown University, Marquette University, Providence College, Seton Hall University, St. John's University, and Villanova University. In December 2012, these schools chose to split from the football playing schools in order to focus on basketball, and in March 2013 reached a settlement, whereby they formed a new conference that retained the Big East name. Butler University, Creighton University, and Xavier University also joined the conference on its July 1, 2013 launch date. The football-playing members of the old Big East joined with several other schools to form the American Athletic Conference, which retains the old Big East's charter and structure.
The conference named Val Ackerman, former WNBA president, as its first commissioner on June 26, 2013. On the same day, it announced that it will be headquartered in New York City. None of the conference's schools sponsor varsity football in the top-level Division I FBS. Georgetown, Villanova, and Butler do operate programs in the second-level Division I FCS, though only Villanova offers scholarships to its football players.
The original Big East
The original Big East Conference was founded in 1979 as a basketball conference, when Providence, St. John's, Georgetown, and Syracuse invited Seton Hall, Connecticut (UConn), Holy Cross, Rutgers, and Boston College (BC). Holy Cross turned down the invitation, as did Rutgers initially, while BC, Seton Hall, and UConn accepted. Villanova and Pittsburgh joined shortly thereafter under the leadership of the Big East's first commissioner, Dave Gavitt.
The conference remained largely unchanged until 1991, when it began to sponsor football, adding Miami as a full member, and Rutgers, Temple, Virginia Tech, and West Virginia as football-only members. Rutgers and West Virginia upgraded to full Big East membership in 1995, while Virginia Tech did the same in 2000. Temple football was kicked out after the 2004 season, but rejoined in 2012 and intended to become a full Big East member in 2013.
The unusual structure of the Big East, with the "football" and "non-football" schools, led to instability in the conference. The waves of defection and replacement brought about by the conference realignments of 2005 and 2010–13 revealed tension between the football-sponsoring and non-football schools that eventually led to the split of the conference in 2013.
The conference reorganized following the tumultuous period of realignment that hobbled the Big East between 2010 and 2013. The Big East was one of the most severely impacted conferences during the most recent conference realignment period. In all, 14 member schools announced their departure for other conferences, and 15 other schools announced plans to join the conference (eight as all-sports members, and four for football only). Three of the latter group later backed out of their plans to join (one for all sports, and the other two for football only).
The present Big East
On December 15, 2012 the Big East's seven non-FBS schools, all Catholic institutions – DePaul, Georgetown, Marquette, Providence, St. John's, Seton Hall, and Villanova – announced that they had voted unanimously to separate from the Big East football playing schools, effective June 30, 2015. Among the many rumor-fueled news stories, it was reported that the so-called Catholic 7, in leaving the Big East, were looking for a more lucrative television deal than they would have received by remaining with the football schools. In March 2013, it was announced that the Catholic 7 were not only parting ways with the football playing schools on June 30, 2013, but that they would retain the Big East name, $10 million from the old conference's treasury, and the right to hold the conference's basketball tournament at Madison Square Garden.
On March 14, 2013, it was reported that the Big East would be adding members in the next seven to ten days. The following day, ESPN stated that the Big East would add Butler and Xavier from the Atlantic 10 Conference, as well as Creighton from the Missouri Valley Conference, with an official announcement to be forthcoming within the next week, although the institutions which were reportedly joining were refusing to comment.
At a news conference in New York City on March 20, 2013, the reorganized league was formally introduced with Butler, Xavier, and Creighton included as members. Additional announcements included details of new contracts for television and for the use of Madison Square Garden as site of the men's basketball tournament.
During May 2013, the conference added several Associate members in lacrosse and field hockey. The University of Denver will play in the men's lacrosse league starting in spring of 2014, while Rutgers University men's lacrosse will play the 2014 season in the Big East before moving to the Big Ten in 2014–15. Additionally, the Big East will host both women's lacrosse and field hockey teams from Rutgers, Temple, Connecticut, and Louisville. Old Dominion will also play field hockey in the league, while Cincinnati will play women's lacrosse.
Big East Conference (1979–2013) members Big East Conference members Associate member
With the exception of Butler, all full members are Catholic schools.
|Institution||Location||Founded||Joined||Type||Enrollment||Nickname||Colors||US News Ranking||Endowment|
|Butler University||Indianapolis, IN||1855||2013||Private/Non-sectarian||4,667||Bulldogs||Butler Blue & White
||2 !2 (Midwest)||$157,549,000|
|Creighton University||Omaha, NE||1878||2013||Private/Catholic
|7,730||Bluejays||Blue & White
||1 !1 (Midwest)||$375,221,000|
|DePaul University||Chicago, IL||1898||2013||Private/Catholic
|25,398||Blue Demons||Royal Blue & Scarlet
||121 !121 (National)||$414,000,000|
|Georgetown University||Washington, D.C.||1789||2013||Private/Catholic
|16,437||Hoyas||Blue & Gray
||20 !20 (National)||$1,009,736,000|
|Marquette University||Milwaukee, WI||1881||2013||Private/Catholic
|11,599||Golden Eagles||Blue & Gold
||75 !75 (National)||$401,200,000|
|Providence College||Providence, RI||1917||2013||Private/Catholic
|4,585||Friars||Black, White & Silver
||2 !2 (North)||$167,110,000|
|St. John's University||New York City, NY||1870||2013||Private/Catholic
|21,354||Red Storm||Red & White
||152 !152 (National)||$303,057,000|
|Seton Hall University||South Orange, NJ||1856||2013||Private/Catholic
|9,745||Pirates||Blue, White & Gray
||128 !128 (National)||$224,233,000|
|Villanova University||Villanova, PA||1842||2013||Private/Catholic
|10,482||Wildcats||Blue, Light Blue & White
||1 !1 (North)||$425,000,000|
|Xavier University||Cincinnati, OH||1831||2013||Private/Catholic
|6,584||Musketeers||Xavier Blue, Silver Gray & White
||4 !4 (Midwest)||$119,509,000|
|Institution||Location||Founded||Joined||Type||Enrollment||Nickname||Colors||US News Ranking||Endowment||Sport(s)||Primary Conference|
|Denver !University of Denver||Denver, Colorado||1864||2013||Private||11,476||Pioneers||Crimson & Gold
||91 !91 (National)||$380,000,000||Men's Lacrosse||The Summit League|
|Rutgers University||New Brunswick, New Jersey||1766||2013||Public||58,788||Scarlet Knights||Scarlet
||69 !69 (National)||$693,500,000||Field Hockey,
Men's & Women's Lacrosse
|American Athletic Conference|
|Temple University||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania||1884||2013||Public||38,648||Owls||Cherry & White
||121 !121 (National)||$277,600,000||Field Hockey,
|American Athletic Conference|
|Connecticut !University of Connecticut||Storrs, Connecticut||1881||2013||Public||25,483||Huskies||Navy Blue & White
||57 !57 (National)||$311,300,000||Field Hockey,
|American Athletic Conference|
|Louisville !University of Louisville||Louisville, Kentucky||1798||2013||Public||22,293||Cardinals||UofL Red & Black
||161 !161 (National)||$721,100,000||Field Hockey,
|American Athletic Conference|
|Cincinnati !University of Cincinnati||Cincinnati, Ohio||1819||2013||Public||33,329||Bearcats||Red & Black
||135 !135 (National)||$1,004,000,000||Women's Lacrosse||American Athletic Conference|
|Old Dominion University||Norfolk, Virginia||1930||2013||Public||24,126||Lady Monarchs||Slate Blue, Silver, & Light Blue
||N/R (National)||$168,100,000||Field Hockey||Conference USA|
In the 2013-14 academic year, the Big East Conference will sponsor championship competition in ten men's and twelve women's NCAA sanctioned sports. Seven schools will be associate members in three sports.
|Swimming & Diving||
|Track and Field (Indoor)||
|Track and Field (Outdoor)||
† = Associates Denver and Rutgers
|Butler||No||Pioneer Football League||No||No||No|
|Georgetown||No||Patriot League||No||Eastern Association of Rowing Colleges||Intercollegiate Sailing Association|
|Villanova||No||Colonial Athletic Association||No||No||No|
† = Associates Connecticut, Louisville, Old Dominion, Rutgers, and Temple
†† = Associates Cincinnati, Connecticut, Louisville, Rutgers, and Temple
¿ = Providence plays volleyball, but currently does so as an Associate member of the America East Conference.
|School||Fencing||Ice Hockey||Rowing||Sailing||Water Polo|
|Creighton||No||No||West Coast Conference||No||No|
|Georgetown||No||No||Eastern Association of Women's Rowing Colleges||Intercollegiate Sailing Association||No|
|Villanova||No||No||American Athletic Conference||No||Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference|
|School||Soccer stadium||Cap.||Basketball arena(s)||Cap.||Baseball park||Cap.||Softball park||Cap.||Lacrosse stadium||Cap.|
|Butler||Butler Bowl||5,647||Hinkle Fieldhouse||10,000||Bulldog Park||500||Butler Softball Field||500||Non-Lacrosse school|
|Creighton||Morrison Stadium||6,000||M:CenturyLink Center Omaha
W:D. J. Sokol Arena
|Creighton Sports Complex
TD Ameritrade Park Omaha
|Creighton Sports Complex||1,000||Non-Lacrosse school|
|DePaul||Wish Field||N/A||M:Allstate Arena
W:Sullivan Athletic Center
|Non-baseball school||Cacciatore Stadium||1,000||Non-Lacrosse school|
|Georgetown||Shaw Field||1,625||M:Verizon Center
|Shirley Povich Field||1,500||Guy Mason Field||200||Multi-Sport Field||2,500|
|Marquette||Valley Fields||N/A||M:BMO Harris Bradley Center
W:Al McGuire Center
|Non-baseball school||Non-softball school||Hart Park Stadium||5,500|
|Providence||Glay Field||N/A||M:Dunkin' Donuts Center
|Non-baseball school||Raymond Field||N/A||Lennon Family Field||1,000|
|Seton Hall||Owen T. Carroll Field||1,800||M:Prudential Center
|Owen T. Carroll Field||600||Essex County
Mike Shepard, Sr. Field
|St. John's||Belson Stadium||2,168||M:Madison Square Garden
M&W:Carnesecca Arena [a]
|Jack Kaiser Stadium||3,500||Red Storm Field||250||DaSilva Memorial Field||1,200|
|Villanova||Villanova Soccer Complex||1,500||M&W:Wells Fargo Center
M&W:The Pavilion [b]
|Villanova Ballpark at Plymouth||1,500||Villanova Softball Complex||N/A||Villanova Stadium||12,500|
|Xavier||Xavier University Soccer Complex||N/A||Cintas Center||10,250||J. Page Hayden Field||500||Non-softball school||Non-Lacrosse school|
|Denver||Lacrosse-only member||Peter Barton Lacrosse Stadium||2,000|
|Rutgers||Lacrosse-only member (2013–14 only)||Yurcak Field||5,000|
- St. John's men generally play their Big East home schedule in Madison Square Garden and their non-conference home schedule on campus at Carnesecca Arena. In 2012-13, St. John's played only one non-conference game at MSG and two Big East games on campus.
- For certain high-profile home games, Villanova uses the Wells Fargo Center, and previously used the Spectrum. In 2005–06, Villanova played three home games at the Wells Fargo Center and the rest on campus at The Pavilion. In 2006, the Wells Fargo Center was also a first-round site for the NCAA Tournament. Under NCAA rules, a venue is not considered a home court unless a school plays four or more regular-season games there; this enabled Villanova to play its first two tournament games at the Wells Fargo Center (but Villanova was not considered the host school for that sub-region – the Atlantic 10 Conference was). This situation occurred again in 2009, with Villanova playing (and winning) its first two tournament games at Wells Fargo Center.
- Big East Conference (1979–2013)
- American Athletic Conference
- Conferences that formed under similar circumstances to the Big East:
- Atlantic Coast Conference, formed by 7 schools that withdrew from the Southern Conference in 1953
- Big Eight Conference and Missouri Valley Conference, both formed by schools that split from the Missouri Valley Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MVIAA) in 1928, although both factions initially retained the MVIAA name
- Mountain West Conference, formed by 8 schools that withdrew from the Western Athletic Conference in 1999
- Southeastern Conference, formed by 13 schools that withdrew from the Southern Conference in 1932
- Southern Athletic Association, an NCAA Division III conference formed by 7 schools that withdrew from the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference in 2012, plus one other invited member
- West Coast Conference, a conference with similar makeup, based in the Western United States
- Ewart, Brian (May 2, 2013). "NCAA Division I Board recognizes New Big East as a conference". VU Hoops. Retrieved July 16, 2013.
- Bachman, Rachel (March 8, 2013). "It’s Official: Big East, Catholic Schools Split". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved March 8, 2013.
- Staff (March 20, 2013). "New Big East adds Butler, 2 others". ESPN. Retrieved March 20, 2013.
- Katz, Andy (June 26, 2013). "Big East hires Val Ackerman as chief". ESPN.com. Retrieved June 26, 2013.
- McNamara, Kevin (March 20, 2013). "Big East office will be based in New York". The Providence Journal. Retrieved March 23, 2013.
- Soshnick, Scott; Kercheval, Nancy (March 20, 2013). "New Big East Adds Butler, Creighton, Xavier; Fox TV Deal". Bloomberg Businessweek. Retrieved March 23, 2013.
- Robbins, Lenn (March 4, 2013). "New Big East heavenly for hoops fans". The New York Post. Retrieved May 30, 2013.
- Blaudschun, Mark (March 8, 2013). "Naming original Big East was simple". AJerseyGuy.com. Retrieved March 9, 2013.
- Crouthamel, Jake (December 8, 2000). "A Big East History and Retrospective, Part 1". SUAthletics.com. Retrieved March 9, 2013.
- Sarah Maslin Nir (September 17, 2011). "Dave Gavitt, the Big East’s Founder, Dies at 73". The New York Times. Retrieved March 9, 2013.
- "Big East, Villanova Make It Official". The Pittsburgh Press, via Google News. United Press International. March 13, 1980. Retrieved March 9, 2013.
- Hanley, Richard F (November 19, 1981). "Pittsburgh To Join Big East". Record-Journal (Google News). Retrieved March 9, 2013.
- "Big East Football Timeline". Philly.com. March 8, 2008. Archived from the original on August 27, 2012. Retrieved March 9, 2013.
- Thamel, Pete (May 7, 2012). "Commissioner John Marinatto Steps Down Amid Big East’s Instability". The New York Times. Retrieved March 9, 2013.
- "Big East 'unwilling' to meet terms". ESPN. January 3, 2013. Retrieved March 9, 2013.
- "Seven schools leaving Big East". ESPN. December 15, 2012. Retrieved December 15, 2012.
- Rovell, Darren (January 6, 2013). "Sources: 'Catholic 7' eyes big TV deal". ESPN. Retrieved March 6, 2013.
- Harten, David (March 5, 2013). "Catholic 7 has framework to keep Big East name, MSG as tourney site". NBC Sports. Retrieved March 7, 2013.
- Katz, Andy. "Source: Other members coming soon". ESPN. Retrieved March 16, 2013.
- Katz, Andy. "Sources: Big East at 10 for 2013-14". ESPN. Retrieved March 16, 2013.
- Liz Clark (March 19, 2013). "‘New’ Big East prepared to make its formal introduction". Washington Post. Retrieved March 20, 2013.
- Chambers, Mike (May 30, 2013). "DU Pioneers men's lacrosse team leaving ECAC for Big East next season". Denver Post. Retrieved July 16, 2013.
- "Rutgers Men’s Lacrosse to Join Newly Formed Big Ten in 2014-15". Rutgers Scarlet Knights. June 3, 2013. Retrieved July 16, 2013.
- Ewart, Brian (May 1, 2013). "Temple Joins New Big East In Lacrosse, Field Hockey". VU Hoops. Retrieved July 16, 2013.
- "Best Colleges". US News Education. U.S. News & World Report. Retrieved 12 September 2013.
- BIGEAST.COM - The Official Website of the BIG EAST Conference
- "St. John's 2012-13 Men's Basketball Schedule" (PDF). St. John's Red Storm. December 6, 2012. Retrieved July 16, 2013.
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