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Can the Basketball Schools Save the Big East?

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The Big East basketball schools got together today to discuss their options. That sounded ominous when I first heard it this morning, so I did not expect anything about the Big East surviving coming out of that meeting.

Apparently, Marquette would like to see the Big East survive. Marquette's interim athletic director Mike Broeker said that the schools which met today were "focused solely on preserving the Big East." In addition, there was no talk of creating an all Catholic school basketball league.

Seton Hall's athletic director Patrick Lyons said that his school "has the utmost confidence in the conference's ability to continue to grow and prosper in its role as one of the marquee NCAA conferences in the nation." Lyons also said "As we have for 32 years, we profoundly support the Big East and embrace its future."

The schools that met were reportedly St. John's, Georgetown, Seton Hall, Villanova, Providence, DePaul, Marquette and Notre Dame.

Can they convince the wandering eyes of Connecticut and Rutgers to return to the fold and work on a plan to save the league as a basketball and football league? If not (and UConn's "better than average" ACC chance makes it doubtful), will they raid another basketball conference to create a stronger basketball league and go after a TV deal?

We'll update you when we hear something.