MEMPHIS, TN (abc24.com) - The Big East could be a big letdown. It looks like the University of Memphis may not be joining the conference after all. The seven Catholic schools in the league are forming a new conference and they want to take the Big East name with them.
Apparently those schools don't think the University of Memphis is good enough for them. They want to leave the Big East Conference only to form a new Big East that doesn't include the Tigers.
To say that Tigers fan Justin Howard is disappointed would be an understatement. "It's horrible, it really sucks," he said, "Memphis always gets the butt end of the stick."
The Tigers are set to join the Big East this summer. If Big East schools Depaul, Georgetown, Marquette, Villanova, Seton Hall, Providence and St. Johns get their way, the Big East name will go with them when they form a new league.
"It seems like everywhere we go or try to go it never really works out," Howard added.
Harold Byrd, President of the University of Memphis Basketball Booster Club, says if the U of M doesn't join the Big East as expected it would be somewhat disappointing, but not the end of the world.
"I think we're positioned well to be where we need to be in the coming years," he said. "To be where we are to have an elite basketball program, have one of the best basketball coaches. To win the football games with Justin Fuente who is dynamic and have all the other programs, women's basketball, baseball going in the right direction - we're positioned well so in the years to come I have nothing but optimism about where the university is going to be."
University of Memphis Athletic Director Tom Bowen is at the Big East meetings in Atlanta, where this proposed dissolution is being discussed. He's expected to hold a news conference to address the situation Monday.