Big East teleconference reportedly on raising exit fees, not expansion


Late last night, word broke that Big East officials would meet via teleconference to discuss expansion in the aftermath of likely losing TCU to the Big 12 — the third departure of a Big East member (or soon-to-be) in a matter of weeks.

Turns out, that may have been only half true; Big East presidents did meet via teleconference today, but the topic of conversation was reportedly over raising exit fees, not expansion, according to multiple media outlets.

Anonymous sources tell the Newark Star-Ledger that a set number for an exit fee was not agreed upon in the meeting. In an unrelated story, John and I met via teleconference today to discuss the fact that, down the road — maybe — we should schedule a teleconference to talk about changes we want to make to the site.

With only six football members left — barring a hiccup in the TCU-to-Big 12 negotiations — the future is bleak for the Big East. Raising exit fees, which are currently set at $5 million, should have been done last year after conference realignment settled down.

Agreeing to a set exit fee is evidently a problem, as several Big East members would undoubtedly jump ship the moment a better offer from another BCS conference came along. But, whether it’s raising exit fees or extending invitations to other schools, it matters not. Here’s the predicament:

Big East presidents, on one hand, are dealing with the consequences of the utter ineffectiveness of commissioner John Marinatto to proactively secure his league after last summer’s moderate conference shift.

On the other hand, the process of picking up the pieces is moving at a snail-like pace because programs like Louisville, West Virginia, UConn and Rutgers are almost certainly trying to buy as much time as possible in the event that another conference decides to expand again.

Trying to rebuild the Big East is ultimately a backup plan.

Reports: Miami hiring Lance Guidry from Tulane as DC

Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Miami is hiring Lance Guidry, who was defensive coordinator at Marshall last season and recently accepted the same position at Tulane, to lead its defense, two people with knowledge of the decision told The Associated Press.

The people spoke on condition of anonymity because a deal was still being finalized between Guidry and Miami.

The 51-year-old Louisiana native was hired way from Marshall by Tulane just last month. Now he’ll replace Kevin Steele on Mario Cristobal‘s staff at Miami. Steele is reportedly on his way to Alabama to become Nick Saban‘s defensive coordinator after holding that position for one season with the Hurricanes.

Alabama has yet to make the hiring of Steele and offensive coordinator Tommy Rees official. Rees had been assistant at Notre Dame.

Tulane announced the hiring of Guidry on Jan. 23 to replace Chris Hampton, who left the New Orleans-based school to join Oregon’s staff as an assistant coach.

Guidry’s defenses at Marshall ranked third in the nation in yards per play this season (4.56) and 26th nationally in 2021 (5.14 ypp).

Iowa-Northwestern set for Wrigley Field in November

Nikos Frazier/Journal & Courier/USA TODAY NETWORK

CHICAGO — Wrigley Field will host a college football game for the third time since 2010 when Iowa plays Northwestern next season.

Northwestern and the Chicago Cubs announced that the Wildcats’ home game will be played Nov. 4.

Northwestern played Illinois at Wrigley in 2010 in the MLB ballpark’s first college football game since 1938, and the Wildcats hosted Purdue there in 2021.

Wrigley Field has a long history of hosting football games. The Chicago Bears played there from 1921 to 1970 before moving to Soldier Field. The old Chicago Cardinals also played at Wrigley, as well as DePaul until its program folded in 1939.

Northwestern had been scheduled to play Wisconsin at Wrigley in 2020, but the game was moved to Ryan Field in Evanston because of the COVID-19 pandemic.