Today it looks like the final blow to the Big East Conference has been absorbed. Unless something screwy happens, West Virginia is leaving for the Big 12. Now you can blame John Marinatto (who is to blame for his horrid leadership), you can blame Mike Tranghese for defending the BCS years back, killing the Big East and making the Big 12 completely dependent on Texas. So it's about time to end the whole thing.
In this instance, I'm not writing about Rutgers, UConn and the football schools. I can careless what they do (though I do love it when Rutgers thinks they belong in the Big Ten; they have as much a chance as DePaul does). I've mentioned this before, but I'm a Seton Hall alum and have become increasingly concerned on what happens to them in this whole school shuffle. But it's not just Seton Hall, it's St. John's, it's Georgetown, it's Villanova; these great basketball programs that will be left behind because they don't play FBS football. What happens to them?
That's why it's time for the basketball schools to be proactive and former their own league. Now who goes into this league? Well, St. John's, Georgetown, Villanova will start the league, and you bring in Seton Hall and Providence because they spent all the years they did in the Big East. Throw in Marquette and DePaul since they are current Big East members. After them, look for all the great basketball schools without major football. Xavier and Butler are obvious ones to pluck. Temple is the interesting case because they're getting better in football. They might not just go into an non-football conference. I also figure Notre Dame doesn't participate in this league, and perhaps join somewhere else for its Olympic sports, but they would be welcome if football independence trumps their plans.
So that leaves us with nine members in a new Big East. Add in UMass, Dayton and Richmond and you have twelve. Twelve is a good number, enough to get multiple NCAA appearances. There, you won't have a round-robin, but with 16 or 18 games, there can be some semblance of rivalry. You can also split into two divisions (say SJU, SHU, GTown, Nova, UMass and Providence in one; Dayton, Xavier, Butler, DePaul, Marquette and Richmond in the other).
We know that the Big East as we know it is done. Louisville and Cincinnati probably follow West Virginia to the Big 12, Rutgers and UConn likely head to ACC and South Florida is the one who probably is forced back into Conference USA. Instead of waiting for this to happen, the basketball (Catholic) schools need to band together like they did once before. Form your own league, play basketball well and more importantly, keep the MSG for your conference tournament, which could be done with St. John's being involved. St. John's is the only college that truly matters in NYC, at least when they're good. If they are back, MSG will host this conference's tournament. It seems ideal for everyone involved.
Not to mention, it makes too much sense.