TV networks still have a 'strong interest' in new look Big East

Jake Roth-US PRESSWIRE

San Diego State athletic director Jim Sterk still has full support of the Big East move for his football team.

San Diego State is looking like they are sticking to the move to the Big East for football. The talks on Monday have been about how the Big East has taken another step back due to losing Rutgers, and possibly UConn. However, San Diego State athletic director Jim Sterk is still confident in the Big East, and does not feel that the league is on its last leg.

Sterk was asked if there was any reason to talk to the Mountain West about rejoining the league, and he said that is no reason to speak to the league at this time.

The main reason that Sterk is still wanting to move forward is due to the amount of people who see San Diego State play in the Mountain West, and the increase in money:

"It's about the number of eyeballs that see us play," Sterk said. "The Mountain West is competitive in football, but no one knows or sees us play. That's the other part of it - building a brand and helping the institution grow nationally.

"We would have the opportunity to grow the program in the Big East and more eyeballs will see it. That helps."

The Big East apparently still has television suitors lined up for a league that is more like Conference USA than the current Big East. Sterk has said that the football-only members are taking in about $3.5 million annually now, plus Big East Commissioner Mike Aresco said that the new deal will be much more than the approximately $1.5 million that a football-only member would get.

The Mountain West teams currently get $800,000 due to the Mtn. shutting down back in May. However, the Mountain West television deal is up in a few years, and it is likely to increase as well.

I am still puzzled to how the Big East that is essentially a clone of the old Conference USA roster can command over $3 million per football-only school. Seven of the current/future members came from C-USA, two from the Mountain West and Temple who was kicked out of the Big East for poor performance.

More will be known once a television deal is hammered out and announced, but the longer the Big East waits to announce a deal could mean that they money was not there.

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