Big East football goes two divisions, title game

Big East Commissioner Mike Aresco answers a question Big East Commissioner Mike Aresco answers a question during a college football game between Connecticut and Rutgers in Piscataway, N.J. (Oct. 6, 2012) Photo Credit: AP

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Big East Conference football will have two six-team divisions with the winner decided by a championship game, commissioner Mike Aresco announced Tuesday. The format will begin next season.

The announcement followed the BCS Presidential Advisory Committee's decision that the Big East will retain an opportunity to play in one of the six marquee bowl games. The conference is also in the midst of negotiating a new television package.

"The new alignment gives the conference and its fans the best of both worlds," Aresco said in a statement. "National exposure that is a result of the Big East being in six of the top 10 U.S. media markets with a schedule that focuses on spirited regional rivalries."

The East Division will include Rutgers, Connecticut, South Florida, Central Florida, Cincinnati and Louisville. The West will contain Boise State, Houston, Memphis, San Diego State, SMU and, initially, Philadelphia-based Temple.

A person familiar with the alignment said Temple agreed to be placed in the West Division while the conference seeks another program.

The Big East said the alignment will "likely" be revised after the 2014 season when Navy and a projected school from the West begin play.

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