As the Big East Conference scrambles to save its life by trying to add six new programs, the league may want to focus first on schools already in the league because some of them are possibly making plans to leave.
On Wednesday, Tom Luicci of the Star-Ledger reported that Rutgers University Athletic Director Tim Pernetti sought advisement from the school's board of Governors Tuesday.
"There had been speculation that Pernetti would publicly receive the authority to explore conference options for the school, which would mean the Board was prepared to approve the $5 million Big East exit fee if the decision is made to change leagues."
However, Luicci could not confirm if Pernetti received permission to look at other options. But, that doesn't mean Pernetti hadn't already received permission. Pernetti did not talk about Rutgers status of exploring a new conference, but did comment on the Big East's expansion plans:
"Everybody in the league is very committed to accomplishing and finding those opportunities and executing upon them as quickly as possible," Pernetti said. "At the same time, I think a lot of what is happening out there in expansion is out of a lot of people's control. The reason there's so much anxiety out there is because it's all about control."
SB Nation's Rutgers blog On The Banks said this Wednesday:
"Rutgers cannot give in, and there is no reason to expect that they will. There are two scenarios that make sense on our end: defanging the non-football programs once and for all, or buying enough time until the next round of conference reshuffling."
If the Big East really wants to save itself, it needs to quickly strengthen relationships between its non-football and football playing members. However, it seems the strategy right now is to just plug the remaining six program holes.