That's the best news the Big East Conference has had in several weeks. The Big East is counting on adding Boise State and San Diego State to raise its national profile for the 2013 football season. But since the announcement that the Bowl Championship Series would be restructured in order begin a football playoff in a Final Four format, Boise State had second thoughts about the move.
Boise State was concerned about the Big East's automatic qualifier status in the BCS and what will happen if a playoff format is adapted. Boise had talks with the Mountain West Conference about remaining in that league but solidified its stance with the Big East Friday in time for the upcoming Big East meetings in Florida that begin this weekend.
In 2012, Temple will replace West Virginia in the Big East football conference with the Mountaineers headed to the Big 12. In addition to Boise State and San Diego State joining the football conference in 2013, Memphis, SMU, Houston and Central Florida will join as all-sport members. Navy joins for football in 2015.
The current Big East schools and the new teams will participate in meetings in Ponte Vedra, Fla., Monday through Wednesday. Syracuse and Pittsburgh, leaving for the Atlantic Coast Conference, will not be represented at the meetings. Athletic directors will meet Monday. School presidents will not be in attendance.
The Big East meetings will be the most important to the conference's future since the ACC-Big East realignment in 2003. Interim commissioner Joe Bailey will take the place of commissioner John Marinatto, who resigned last week under pressure from the conference presidents.
In addition to setting the stage for future BCS decisions and planning for fall negotiations with the television networks, the Big East will also be discussing Friday's announcement of a five-year agreement between the Big 12 and Southeastern Conference for their football champions to meet in a postseason bowl game following the 2014 season.
That merger gives the Big 12 and SEC the power position of a Rose Bowl-type game, the bowl game that has strengthened the Big Ten and Pac-12 in football circles. It may also spark further realignment moves. Florida State has openly discussed the possibility of leaving the ACC for the Big 12 and that option may be more attractive to the Seminoles now.
And FSU's possible departure to the Big 12 might force the ACC to reconsider expansion and the possibility of considering Notre Dame, Rutgers or UConn.
Big East associate commissioner John Paquette said that Friday's announcement by the Big 12 and SEC is forcing every other conference to "digest" what it means for everyone. He said every conference has concerns.
The BCS hopes to reveal its plans for a football playoff around July 4.