Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
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Temple University’s Board of Trustees will meet via conference call Wednesday afternoon to discuss joining the Big East in all sports, CSNPhilly.com reported.
As reported here last week, the Big East has fast-tracked Temple to join for all sports in 2012 mainly because West Virginia is leaving the league by July 1 to join the Big 12. West Virginia must pay the Big East $20 million to leave early.
With only seven football schools left, the Big East needed to move fast in order to add an eighth team for scheduling purposes. Temple, which plays football in the MAC, had previously been in the Big East for football from 1991-2004 but was booted for being non-competitive.
“This is driven by the 2012 football schedule,” Patrick J. O’Connor, Chairman of Temple’s Board of Trustees and principal in the Philadelphia-based law firm Cozen O’Connor, told CSNPhilly. “Because of that, decisions have to be made. There are time considerations.
Temple, which plays basketball in the Atlantic 10, would become the Big East’s 16th basketball team next season.
It would cost Temple $2 million to leave the A-10 with less than a year’s notice and $2.5 million to leave the MAC, CBSSports.com reported.
“I think we were a natural choice to join the Big East months ago,” O’Connor told CSNPhilly.com. “It baffles me that they let in some of the schools they did before Temple.”
“The Board’s job is to make a decision that impacts all of Temple’s students,” O’Connor added. “It will affect where we are (athletically) over the next five to 10 years. It’s a matter of where we want to be. We have two world-class coaches in football (Steve Addazio) and men’s basketball (Fran Dunphy) and they belong on a national stage.”
Louisville coach Rick Pitino has been a staunch supporter of both Temple and Memphis joining the Big East.
Memphis was admitted earlier this month beginning in 2013.
At that point, the league will have 18 basketball programs after SMU, Houston, UCF and Memphis all join.
Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.