With the news that the Big East has approved moving to a 12 team football conference, its time to take a look at the most likely candidates to be added to the conference. There are numerous options for the Big East in seeking 12 teams, most of them depend on a prospective school's willingness to be a football-only member or not and whether or not the Big East will be able to hold on to its six current members. That all being the case, below are two charts. One shows the enrollment, football and athletic budgets, attendance figures and academic profile of the schools. The second chart shows the distance from each possible new member to the existing six football members.
Note: The service academies aren't funded the same way as public and private universities, so their athletic department financials aren't released to the public. Also, the academies are ranked as national liberal arts colleges in the US News and World Report rankings but not as national universities (for obvious reasons). Army and Navy are tied at #14 while Air Force is ranked #33. All of the financial information was pulled directly from the US Department of Education database (thanks to Kristi Dosh of The Business of College Sports for assistance with the database).
|Boise State||East Carolina||Houston||Memphis||SMU||Temple||UCF|
|Full Time Undergrad Enrollment||20,000||18,266||20,771||12,465||5,910||23,958||34,126|
|2010 Avg. Attendance||34,059||50,012||31,092||23,182||23,387||37,222||36,724|
|TV Market Ranking||113||101||10||48||5||4||19|
|US News Ranking||#67 (Regional Colleges)||#194 (National Universities)||NR||NR||#62 (National Universities)||#132 (National Universities)||#177 (National Universities)|
|R&D Expenditure Ranking||275||239||134||180||259||140||123|
|Football Only Option||Yes||Yes||No||No||No||No||No|
Here's a look at the distance between the six current football members and the ten possible additions. Obviously some schools make for a relatively short stop for just about everyone. For instance, Temple is less than 400 miles from half the conference. Conversely, Venezuela is closer to Tampa than Boise is. Travel and its costs, especially for any school that might be considered for full membership. Of course, considering the desperate nature of the situation for the Big East, distance probably won't factor into the situation, but it will matter to fans who might wish to travel.
|Cincinnati||Connecticut||Louisville||Rutgers||South Florida||West Virginia||Average|