We all know the Big East is in panic mode by losing teams and is possibly in jeopardy of losing their BCS status. Now the leagues latest attempt to create solidarity fell flat. The Big East had a meeting last week to discuss raising the exit penalty significantly above the current $5 million mark. CBSSports.com's Brett McMurphy obtained an email that was sent by Big East commissioner John Marinatto to the existing members that outlined what the raise in exit penalty would be and here is some of what McMurphy reported:
The Big East's presidents and chancellors discussed but did not approve a proposal that would have increased the league's exit fee to between about $17 million and $20 million, more than three times the current amount, during the league's Oct. 2 meeting, according to league documents obtained by CBSSports.com.
Chalk this up as another reason that Boise State and Air Force should not make the move to the Big East. In declining to raise the exit penalty just shows that no one in the Big East is committed to making their league work. I can almost be certain that if the Big 12 comes calling to West Virginia, Louisville or Cincinnati because they want to get back to 12 teams, those schools will leave the Big East in a second. Some members probably have one foot out the door once a better offer comes along.
This should be a clear message to any schools who is thinking about joining the Big East to have second thoughts in joining. Some schools may take a chance and go with it and have the BCS status for two years since the Big East is guaranteed a BCS berth through the 2014 season. That could make sense for East Coast teams like Temple, Central Florida and maybe even Houston or SMU, but for Boise State and Air Force who would be football-only members things could get hairy quickly if the Big East either dissolves or loses BCS status. If the Big East does lose BCS status then Boise State and Air Force are basically in a league that would be on par with the Mountain West, but stuck with huge travel expenses, and not to mention their other sports in a completely different league.
My bias and unsolicited advice is for Air Force and Boise State to stay where they are and wait and see what happens, because who knows come December that the BCS may give the Mountain West a BCS waiver for two years which would put the Mountain West in the same position as the Big East but a more secure league.