Conference Realignment: Boise State Says SDSU Would Make A Good Partner, BYU In Serious Talks To Join Big East

It has been nine days since actual conference expansion news and now there is some more realignment news regarding the Big East. First up is that Boise State's Chris Petersen feels that San Diego State would make a good partner for a Western Big East division. Also Boise State is not in the Big East yet so Petersen's comments are a bit premature.

However, it is no surprise that Petersen's comments come back to recruiting in California:

Asked Monday if he thought SDSU would be a good candidate for that, Petersen said, "Absolutely. No doubt."

One reason he'd like it is recruiting. About 30 players on his roster are from California, including several from Southern California and San Diego County. Being in the same conference as SDSU allows him to tell recruits that their families occasionally can watch them play near home.

"Any time we could stay west, certainly in California, we would like that," Petersen said Monday in a phone interview with The San Diego Union-Tribune.

As for San Diego State they have not been invited or have been mentioned as a possible Big East candidate, but San Diego State is making it known that they want to be part of a BCS league. 

In more tangible news, ESPN's Joe Schad is reporting that talks between the BYU Cougars are getting serious about joining the Big East as a football-only member:

Earlier this month, BYU coach Bronco Mendenhall said the Cougars, a football independent, have had discussions with the Big East about joining the league.

"With the landscape changing, the main benefit I can see on a short-term scale would be inclusion to the BCS system," Mendenhall said. "That is up in two years, and whether the Big East can hold that spot with the new teams going in, my guess would be yes. I can't speak as to what we are going to do other than just to verify we have been approached."

Actually, this is not really anything new about BYU, stupid ESPN sucked me in. However, Jay Drew of the Salt Lake Tribune who covers BYU is saying that BYU to the Big East is close, but nothing intiment. Also what is interesting that there was a story up on the Salt Lake Tribune, but the story has been taken down. However over at Big East Coast Bias a commentator put in the entire article before it was removed:

Brigham Young University is on the verge of joining the Big East Conference as a football-only member - perhaps within the next day or two - The Salt Lake Tribune has learned.

A source familiar with the negotiations confirmed Tuesday morning that the conference and school could announce before the end of the week that BYU will be part of a proposed western division that also includes Boise State, Southern Methodist, Houston and, possibly, Air Force.

The Big East is trying to get back to 12 football-playing members with the pending departures of Pittsburgh and Syracuse to the ACC and West Virginia to the Big 12.

BYU officials have confirmed in recent days that they are talking to the Big East about football-only membership, but declined further comment when contacted earlier this week. They could not be immediately reached Tuesday morning.

The Big East is considering Houston, SMU and Central Florida for membership in all sports. A source familiar with UCF's dealing with the conference said it "appears" that BYU will be a part of a group of schools that announces this week.

The source familiar with the negotiations on the Big East side told The Tribune that a few logistics were still being worked out in regard to BYU because of its current television arrangements as an independent. He said there are enough variables that could change and stall the negotiations, but that both sides were viewing the possibilities "positively" and that the announcement could come sooner rather than later.

If BYU moves to the Big East as a football-only member, it appears that the school will continue to compete in the West Coast Conference for most of its other sports, including men's and women's basketball.

We have heard this before that an announcement will be made in a few days, so again, nothing is done until it is done.

So really, nothing has happened because BYU will not comment on anything regarding realignment. If BYU is in discussions to join the Big East it will make the Big East more enticing for Boise State to join and maybe even Air Force to join in a Western Big East division. 

However there is more news coming from the Orlando Sentinel that Cincinnati and Louisville do not want to be in a Western division and that Central Florida could be in the Western division and could look like this:

East:
Connecticut
Rutgers
Cincinnati
Louisville
South Florida
Navy.

West:
BYU
Houston
SMU
UCF
Boise State
Air Force

San Diego State could replace Air Force if they decide not to join the Big East or are not going to make a quick decision and the Big East wants to make a move sooner than Air Force's liking.

As always, stay tuned.

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