- Associated Press - Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Brigham Young won’t be part of the Big East’s westward expansion.

Negotiations between the rebuilding conference and BYU have broken off, a person familiar with the talks told The Associated Press. The person spoke Tuesday on condition of anonymity because the conference and school have not been making their talks public.

BYU to the Big East is dead. It’s not going to happen,” the person said.

BYU athletic department spokesman Brett Pyne said in an email that school officials declined a request for comment.

The Big East was trying to add BYU as part of its plan to become a 12-team football league.

The deal-breaker was television rights. The person says BYU wanted to retain the rights to its home football games and the league could not agree to that.

No other school in a major conference has such a deal.

BYU, based in Provo, Utah, left the Mountain West Conference after last season to become a football independent. The school entered its other sports in the West Coast Conference and struck an eight-year-deal with ESPN. BYU also has its own television network.

The Big 12 had courted BYU earlier this year when it was looking to replace Texas A&M and later Missouri, but working out a television agreement prevented a deal.

The Big East ultimately ran into the same problem as it tried to persuade the school to become a football-only member.

Big East Commissioner John Marinatto had been talking to BYU about joining the league for weeks. But the school’s desire to retain the TV rights to its home games did not come up until late in the discussions, the person said.

Negotiations between the league and school ended in the last 48 hours, the person said.

The fruitless negotiations with BYU have held up the Big East’s expansion plans. The conference for weeks has been courting Boise State, Air Force and Navy as football-only members, and Conference USA schools SMU, Houston and Central Florida to join in all sports.

Boise State and Air Force play in the MWC. Navy is a football independent.

The move west for the Big East was prompted by the announced departures of Syracuse and Pittsburgh to the Atlantic Coast Conference in September.

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