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The Big East’s situation is tricky because of seven nonfootball members _ such as Georgetown and Villanova _ that help make it one of the nation’s strongest basketball conferences. The basketball schools and football schools often have different agendas. But losing Pitt and Syracuse would be a huge blow to Big East basketball as well as football.

The other football-playing members of the Big East are Rutgers, Connecticut, Louisville, South Florida and Cincinnati.


AP College Football Writer Ralph D. Russo in Tallahassee, Fla., AP Sports Writers Luke Meredith in Iowa City, Iowa; Jaime Aron in Fort Worth, Texas; Joedy McCreary in Raleigh, N.C.; Hank Kurz in Blacksburg, Va.; Beth Rucker in Lexington, Ky., and Greg Beacham in Pasadena, Calif., contributed to this report.