Big East to Rutgers: 'We wish them well'

Elsa

Big East Conference commissioner Mike Aresco released a statement Tuesday addressing the departure of Rutgers University.

While Rutgers University was making its move to the Big Ten Conference official with an afternoon press conference, its soon-to-be former league, the Big East Conference, and its commissioner Mike Aresco issued a press release wishing the school well.

"Although we are disappointed that Rutgers has decided to leave the Big East Conference, we wish them well. They have been a valued member of the Conference for many years.

"We realize that conference realignment is currently a fact of life in college sports. In the context of this realignment, changes in our membership have been taking place, including important additions. In fact, the Big East has expanded its scope with new members in California, Texas, Florida, Idaho, Tennessee and Pennsylvania. As a result, the Big East has created a unique national football conference that is a factor in the BCS Championship, remains the nation's strongest basketball conference top to bottom, and is a major force across the full spectrum of men's and women's college sports. We remain committed to, and confident in, the continued growth and vitality of the Big East Conference."

Rutgers, which will join the Big Ten with the Maryland Terrapins, becomes the fifth Big East school in the last year and a half to realign itself with a new conference.

It's still unclear when the Scarlet Knights will join the league, as the school and Big East are expected to work out an early-exit agreement. Currently, the Big East requires a $10 million exit fee and a 27-month waiting period.

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