Whether or not confirmed or not confirmed in the press, by now we are all getting the undeniable sense that the Big East doesn’t want us under any conditions. None. Zippo. Who knows why really, and maybe we do at some point get an invite, but if the league’s recent history is any indicator, its decisions right now have nothing to do with any real analysis of any long term gains the league would make.
The BE is all about the right now. They are the proverbial guy who is cutting off his nose to spite his face, but in fairness to the league, they sort of have to be that way right now.
You see, the league leaders – the same idiots who sat on their hands for the last few years while others aggressively shaped their futures, are at least smart enough to know that 2013 is going to be here very soon. The reality is that the AQ status they currently hold is about to be recalled and they have no choice, now, but to try to find two teams who can deliver enough rankings ooomph to help them hold on to it.
Enter Boise State. Boise State is the ONLY school – save Notre Dame – that can save the Big East. UCF, Houston, SMU…they all admittedly could have huge futures ahead – same as ECU in a BCS league – but none deliver the golden key…none.
Navy would help – based on the last two years – but they also don’t need a league for football. They have a fixed draw and like to play a varied schedule. At this point, ECU should be careful what we wish for because there is a very strong likelihood that all of these teams – save West Virginia and maybe Louisville – will be right back with us in 2014. No kidding.
If ECU really wants to do itself a favor, we need to beat UCF this year. Keep them from any fringe Top-25 appearance. We need to push CUSA to set a course to take that AQ status from the BE.
Look…if UCF, SMU, and Houston go to the BE, then Coach Holland and our fans should implement the Boise State Plan. That’s right. Beat the hell out of whatever is left of CUSA – sweep it for two years in a row and amp up for our OOC games. As crappy as the press and the BE has been to us, we have just enough of a reputation and national brand to parlay a cupcake schedule with a marquee upset into the Top 25. Our recruiting won’t get worse in a weaker CUSA, so I would expect we can run the table sans maybe USM.
Boise State parlayed that approach into a big-time program and an even bigger reputation on the air. A couple of 11-12 win seasons sure did wonders for their recruiting, too.
Meanwhile, our league and MWC should be pushing hard to form a league that can give the BE a run for its AQ status. If we could convince Boise to stick with a merged league, we would have the inside track, really, especially if WVU and Louisville bolt.
Even though nothing is firm one way or another, it is important for all of us to know that there are other ways to get where we need to go. Coach Holland will doggedly pursue alternatives. We just have to stay the course and leverage every asset we have to keep getting the ECU word out.
Even if we get an invite to the Big East, it is only a 2-year life line and will require even more positioning to ensure we maintain AQ inclusion. And, if the BE adds six and we are not one of them, then we need to make the Big East pay for its poor management the only way we can, by succeeding by any honest means necessary. I know that Coach Holland is always looking several steps down the road, so be confident that ECU’s future is still quite bright.