TyBull Posted May 7, 2008 Group: Member Topic Count: 0 Content Count: 6,900 Reputation: 102 Days Won: 0 Joined: 11/01/2002 Share Posted May 7, 2008 The Charleston Gazette Wrote:Big East quietly secure millionsBy Mitch VingleSports EditorMay 7, 2008THE BIG EAST'S eight football schools quietly locked up a boatload of money last week.And almost no one noticed."It was," said West Virginia athletic director Ed Pastilong, "monumental."Perhaps appropriately, Pastilong spoke while attending a Fiesta Bowl function in Phoenix. That's the same city in which, four years earlier, the Bowl Championship Series handlers announced a three-pronged evaluation would be applied to member leagues after the 2007 season.Because of the then-crippled Big East.Last week, however, without fanfare, BCS officials reaffirmed the participation of the six leagues currently involved through the end of the 2013 season. That includes the Big East.The reinvention of the league since the 2003 purge is complete. And one can now call it a complete success.The reason is simple: no one noticed the news. No one questioned the Big East's place at the adult table. The reaffirmation wasn't even a note in BCS meeting coverage."It was quiet,'' Big East commissioner Mike Tranghese said Tuesday. "The way I like it."It was both quiet and satisfying.Just like the unreported numbers-crunching that led to the reaffirmation."We had a formal [evaluation] process in December," Tranghese said. "No one made much of it. All of us [bCS officials] elected not to make a big deal of it.''That's how Tranghese promised the process would be handled right after details of the three-pronged evaluation process were announced a few years back."We've been careful not to discuss specifics too much because we don't want the media to speculate," said the commissioner.Mission accomplished."It's a complicated formula," Tranghese said Tuesday. "It's an analysis we agreed not to talk about. But it has to do with the performance in bowls, Top 25 teams, the conference rankings ... It's all football related. You have to reach particular levels."The prongs as explained after the 2004 Phoenix meetings: a four-year average of each league's highest ranked team, the number of each league's Top 25 teams and the average BCS ranking of all members."Exactly," Tranghese said. "Everything has weighted values."And these days the Big East is a heavyweight. So the weight has been lifted from those like the commissioner and Pastilong."[bCS membership] means security for the future," Pastilong said. "It means being in a position to vie for a national championship. It's very important."Especially for his state of mind. Neither he nor Tranghese forget the directive issued by a BCS committee that said "beginning with the 1999 regular season, each BCS conference is subject to review and possible loss of automatic selection by the BCS should the conference champion not have an average ranking of 12 or higher over a four-year period." It was tabbed the "Big East rule."Then came 2003, when the Atlantic Coast Conference raided the league. First Miami and Virginia Tech left. Then Boston College."There was anxiety," Pastilong remembers. "There was anxiety in regard to our conference, which trickled to us. That trickled to our followers. This [bCS membership] affects so much. It affects the overall strength of a conference and how a program is looked at."The Big East landed a reprieve in 2004, after the breakup, when the BCS granted a stay through 2007. But the media heat remained and the committee felt compelled to release details of the standards."It was a very difficult period," Tranghese said. "All I said at the time was there's no sense fussing about it. Just put your nose to work and win games.""Things are significantly better now.''The commissioner pointed to the league's three straight BCS bowl victories. He pointed to "two incredibly great seasons."And he pointed to the beautiful sound of silence when the Big East was again included among the BCS partners."Now," he said, "no one even discusses it."To contact sports editor Mitch Vingle, send e-mail to email@example.com or call (304) 348-4827. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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