Mike Brey

Report: Notre Dame to stay in the Big East for one more season

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It seems to be official now that Notre Dame will be playing at least one more season in the Big East.

It was announced back in September that the Irish would be taking their non-football talents to the ACC, but it wasn’t clear when that change was actually going to be made and when a decision was going to become official.

Well, apparently all of that happened last Friday.

Only no one knew about it until Mike Brey spilled the beans on a conference call this morning.

The Chicago Tribune has the details:

“We do know we’ll be in the Big East next season,” Brey said. “That decision was made last Friday. …The last hurrah will be next year, not this year.”

[…]

Big East bylaws mandated a 27-month waiting period before departure and there was some thought that Notre Dame — which wouldn’t owe the league a penny of relocation fees if it waited that long — would negotiate an early exit to jump in with fellow Big East exports Syracuse and Pittsburgh for the 2013-14 athletic calendar.

That, evidently, is not to be. And Brey said he’s fine with it, citing a bit of “buyer’s remorse” in shifting to the ACC.

Perhaps what’s more interesting is that Brey insinuated part of the decision hinged on the fact that he felt that the Catholic 7 would be spending at least one more season as a member of the Big East.

“I feel strongly that the Cathiclic schools are going to be there with us,” Brey said. “That’s one of the reasons we decided to sit tight. It looked like the Catholic schools were not going to be able to formulate the league they’re going to put together.”

So based on what Brey is telling us, the Big East will have 18 teams next season, as Syracuse and Pitt depart for the ACC:

Joining in 2013:

Central Florida
Houston
Memphis
SMU
Temple

Leaving with the Catholic 7:

DePaul
Georgetown
Marquette
Providence
Seton Hall
St. John’s
Villanova

Leaving in 2014:

Louisville (ACC)
Notre Dame (ACC)
Rutgers (Big Ten)

Staying because they have no place better to go:

Cincinnati
Connecticut
South Florida

Gonzaga’s NCAA tournament chances take a major blow in loss to No. 16 SMU

SMU guard Nic Moore (11) shoots over Gonzaga forward Kyle Wiltjer (33) during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Saturday, Feb. 13, 2016, in Dallas. (AP Photo/Jim Cowsert)
(AP Photo/Jim Cowsert)
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Nic Moore scored 18 of his 25 points in the second half and added 11 assists as No. 16 SMU knocked off Gonzaga in Moody Coliseum on Saturday night, 69-60.

The Zags got 20 points and 16 boards from Domantas Sabonis, but Kyle Wiltjer scored just four points and shot 2-for-17 from the floor.

It wasn’t pretty.

And it may have been the end of Gonzaga’s NCAA tournament hopes.

Entering Saturday, the Zags had an RPI in the mid-60s, enough to keep them in the bubble conversation but not enough to make them anything more than a team that will be projected to end up on the cut-line.

The issue is a complete lack of quality wins on their résumé. Gonzaga beat UConn in the Bahamas. That’s a borderline top 50 win. They beat Washington, another borderline top 50 win. Beyond that? They swept Pepperdine, beat Tennessee and own a win over Montana. None of those are top 100 wins, and that’s why the SMU game was such a big deal. The Mustangs are a top 25 team. This was a road game. This win was the kind of thing that the Zags could pin at the top of their profile.

But Wiltjer didn’t show up, the Zags had no answer for Moore and they’ll head back to Spokane needing, in all likelihood, to win the WCC’s automatic bid if they want to dance.

POSTERIZED: Cal’s Jaylen Brown has his dunk contest entry

California's Jaylen Brown lays up a shot against Oregon State in the second half of an NCAA college basketball game Saturday, Feb. 13, 2016, in Berkeley, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)
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Cal picked up a big win over Oregon State in Haas Pavilion on Saturday night, and the exclamation point was this emphatic dunk from Jaylen Brown: