Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The conference realignment saga continues - and continues to aggravate and distress me  ...  entertain and distract me.

"Clearly we’re following everything right now, but we are very comfortable where we are as an independent, and we are comfortable with the Patriot League,” Corrigan told The Washington Post. “We have great respect for the Big East and John Marinatto. But as we look at things today, we are comfortable where we are.”

Finally with the Big East remaining their typical opposite-of-proactive, Army has removed themselves from the Big East's short list of emergency fallback schools.

Thank god. There is no value for Army in the Big East - most of Army's historic scheduling interests have left the conference. The Cadets have played Citadel more times than they've played Cincinnati; the Cadets have played Lehigh more times than they've played Louisville. Army has never played something something USF. Without Syracuse and Pitt why would Army even join the Big East? There is no tangible rivalry with any team except Rutgers.

So what would be the point of moving to the Big East? For Army a move to the Big East would be the opposite of going BIG TIME.


But at least it is a proactive blueprint and could even help the Big East maintain its BCS status if other commissioners want to maintain a true national championship that includes participants from all sections of the country.

Disgusting misrepresentation of the facts. Had the Big East reached out to new teams prior to Pitt and Syracuse bolted it would have been proactive - and they wouldn't need a blueprint. A move right now reeks of desperation. Army languished in the Conference USA for 9 years, and considering that Big East membership strengthened both Louisville and Cincinnati what reason does Army have to sign up for an even tougher situation?

By saying "tough situation" I mean the Big East's tougher schedule. This is certainly not about rivalries. Just as West Point is getting its act together football-wise why would it want to sign away control of their schedule? It doesn't seem like a good time to give up schedule control. Not  that Army has much control over the schedule to begin with. 

In the same light, I'm all for Navy and Air Force joining the Big East. I think those programs have just as much to lose as Army, but for rival academies who I don't particularly like - I think it would make for a nice experiment. As a Pitt alum, I spent my better days becoming a die-hard Big East fan now that Pitt has jumped clear of the down-trending conference I still have a curiosity - morbid as it may be - to see how the conference that I rooted for for so many years turns out in the long run. It's crazy times right now in college football but one certainty is that I can always get up to root against Rutgers or WVU. I still want to see the Big East survive and thrive. I'm a Big East fan - I'm an Army fan. I don't think either element complements the other - this isn't an historic Big East with Pitt, Cuse, BC, Virginia Tech. Today's Big East is Louisville, Cincy, USF... the feel is a lot more Conference USA than anything else. After all, there's a reason why teams are disappearing from the Big East and why the conference remains in serious peril.

 With this Big East it's clearly better to wait-and-see. Army won't strengthen the Big East brand much and if the conference's existence is dependent on Army's draw then that confirms just how weak the Big East is at this point. It's not like most of those Big East teams have done anything through the years except stay out of Army's way. Sorry Big East, I hope it works out, meanwhile: West Point has a schedule to fill out



David said...

Good post.

Army played USF in 2003 (lost 28-0) and 2004 (won 42-35).

EASY to forget the first, given that we're all trying to erase that entire season from our minds.

But DEFINITELY add 2004 back to your memory banks: Carlton Jones rushed for 200+ yards, Zac Dahman passed for 200+ yards, and Army scored 35 second half points.

So like I said, Army has played USF once. :-)

Chris said...

LOL, wow. I was so certain that Army/USF never played that I didn't even check. Once again, I stand corrected.


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