After reports surfaced last night that stop gap invitations could be issued to schools such as Central Florida, East Carolina, and Temple at today's the meeting of Big East presidents, this morning's news comes as a bit of a letdown. According to the AP, Big East presidents and leadership met this morning and instead of issuing invitations to new members in hopes of stabilizing the football side of the conference, they discussed efforts to raise the exit fee. Raising the exit fee would at least signal outwardly that the remaining members are interested in staying, but wouldn't necessarily stop members from accepting invitations to other conferences should they come.
According to Brendan Prunty of the New Jersey Star-Ledger, the league discussed raising the exit fee and there appeared to be some level of agreement to do it in the near future:
The Big East's current exit fee is $5 million, but with the recent defections of Pittsburgh and Syracuse to the Atlantic Coast Conference, there has been serious talk of raising it significantly. While no new exit fee number was set on the morning call, there appears to be unanimous support in raising it, so as to prevent further schools from bolting to other conferences.