Big East Coaches Mostly Quiet Regarding Realignment - WVU Football, WVU Basketball, News - Mountaineer Sports

Big East Coaches Mostly Quiet Regarding Realignment


All eight Big East Football coaches got on the phone Monday and held their typical teleconference with the media. But this teleconference was anything but routine.

Pitt and Syracuse announced their defection from the Big East and desire to join the ACC on Sunday. The ACC accepted both schools with open arms and increased its membership to 14.

Syracuse Head Coach Doug Marrone told his team and coaching staff to refrain from making any comments about the move to the ACC.

"I'm excited for the University, our athletic program and our student-athletes," Marrone said. "Joining the Atlantic Coast Conference puts us in a strong position for the future. The ACC has quality schools academically and athletically and I look forward to competing against them.  We have a tough task ahead this season and that is what we need to concentrate on."

Pitt Head Coach Todd Graham briefly discussed the topic.

"I'm grateful to our Chancellor and (Athletic Director) Steve Pederson for solidifying our program in the future," Graham said. "We're excited about the opportunity in the future. Right now we are focused on the Big East and playing Notre Dame, but we're excited about it."

Graham was asked about his opinion regarding the future of the Backyard Brawl between Pitt and West Virginia.

"I have no idea," Graham said. "It's one of the great rivalries in college football and you would hope it would continue, but I have no idea what the future holds."

Most of the rest of the Big East coaches on the teleconference did not discuss it and instead remained focused on talking about their teams.

Connecticut is reportedly aggressively pursuing a spot in the ACC. UCONN is in a unique place with its new Athletic Director yet to take office. Connecticut Head Coach Paul Pasqualoni previously coached at Syracuse and did offer an opinion on the realignment topic.

"What would be the landscape of let's call it the new Big East?" Pasqualoni asked. "Does that bring in Baylor and Missouri and can that be worked out with the remaining Big East teams, or is there an opportunity to go into another conference? I think those are things that are going to have to be discussed very quickly in the very near future and decisions are going to have to be made."

Pasqualoni indicated Connecticut and other schools should be vigilant and prepared. He alluded to the speed at which Pitt and Syracuse filed for acceptance into the ACC and were accepted as proof that realignment can and does happen quickly.

What's next for the Big East? The eight coaches have something more pressing to be worried about regarding games on the field. Adminstrations on the other hand are trying to put together an all out blitz to get in the best position possible for their respective schools.

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