Cincinnati e-mails show school administrators mulling options in Big 12, ACC

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For the moment, the Cincinnati Bearcats remain in a holding pattern as they watch more member schools defect from the Big East, a conference that it has called home since 2005.

But as pieces shift, most recently Louisville to the ACC and Rutgers to the Big Ten, it doesn’t mean that school administrators aren’t looking for other options, as recent e-mail exchanges published by the Cincinnati Enquirer confirm.

“Big 10 and ACC moves … could cause Big 12 perhaps to rethink staying at 10 schools,” Athletic Director Whit Babcock wrote in a Nov. 18 e-mail to President Santa Ono. “We need to focus on both ACC (primarily) but also Big 12.”

That e-mail came before Louisville’s departure, though, according to the report, the ACC remains the frontrunner for an eventual Cincinnati move.

The Big 12 reportedly has “no position” at the moment on realignment, having explored the idea of adding Louisville before the Cardinals moved to the ACC.

With uncertainty in its current conference and the possibilities of other conferences unsure, Babcock was reassuring in another e-mail published by the Enquirer.

“This is going to be a wild ride,” Babcock wrote to Ono. “Can be bumpy and all-consuming. We will navigate it together.”

Daniel Martin is a writer and editor at, covering St. John’s. You can find him on Twitter:@DanielJMartin_

PHOTO: Ohio State’s new LeBron James shoe display

during the College Football Playoff National Championship Game at AT&T Stadium on January 12, 2015 in Arlington, Texas.
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Ohio State has capitalized on its close relationship with NBA superstar LeBron James over the years and now has a new shoe display that should come in handy during recruiting.

The Buckeyes put out a tweet late this week with the display, calling themselves “THE LeBron school.” While this is something small, recruits like that the Buckeyes are tied into the best player in the world and it’s cool to them that Ohio State gets some exclusive gear.

Rutgers hoping new duo can bring a spark

of the Ohio State Buckeyes against the Rutgers Scarlet Knights during their Big Ten conference game at Rutgers Athletic Center on February 8, 2015 in Piscataway, New Jersey.
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Rutgers has struggled to achieve success on the floor the last few years and head coach Eddie Jordan is hoping that some talented newcomers can help start a turnaround. With the start of practice, local media saw some of the Scarlet Knights’ early practice and Jerry Carino of the Asbury Park Press noted that the duo of freshman point guard Corey Sanders and junior college forward Deshawn Freeman were getting a lot of burn together.

With both incoming players being four-star prospects, it’s hardly a surprise that Jordan would see what the two were capable of. According to Carino, it meant a lot of Sanders driving and forcing the defense to collapse before finding Freeman.

“It seems like coach always has us on the same team,” Freeman said to Carino. “Ever since we’ve gotten here, he’s trying to get us to play together.”

Carino also notes that since Rutgers is deeper, longer and more athletic in general this season, the team could do more with a pressing defense to help create turnovers.

While Rutgers still faces an uphill climb in the Big Ten, they at least have some exciting pieces that will be in place for a few seasons.