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“We’re excited about the upside here,” said Magnus, who heads the network’s college sports programming.

The conference’s commissioner, Mike Aresco, says it plans to announce a new name this spring, perhaps as early as next month, to get marketing started quickly. Branding groups, school presidents and business partners are being consulted to narrow the list.

Fans already are weighing in through social media.

“It’s like a national focus group,” Aresco said.

The conference also needs to soon choose a conference basketball tournament site for next year. It will probably be in a city where a member school plays.

Other tasks include determining how to distribute the money from departing schools’ exit fees and other sources.

ESPN has been affiliated with the Big East in its various incarnations for more than three decades. The network will own rights to at least 66 football games and 170 men’s basketball games annually for various platforms, licensing some to other channels.

Magnus said it had not been determined yet if the conference would have a weekly basketball fixture on ESPN like the longstanding “Big Monday” games. Some football will be played on Thursday and Friday, but there has been no talk of Tuesdays, Aresco said.

With Texas schools joining, Aresco added, conference officials will be sensitive to conflicts with that state’s beloved Friday night high school football games.

Aresco is confident the Catholic 7 schools will face their former fellow Big East members in basketball in future nonconference games because the split was amicable. The league expects to announce an additional over-the-air TV deal for basketball next week; its current contract is with CBS.

ESPN’s existing football agreement with the Big East ran through 2013, while the 2013-14 season will act as a bridge year for the conference’s basketball rights; the new contract kicks in for the 2014-15 school year.

There’s a slight chance the football title game could start in 2014. Aresco says it will likely be held on campus, as the Pac-12 does, at least for the first few years.