Pitt and West Virginia paid to get out of the Big East, but will member institutions reap the benefits? (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)
With the recent payouts of Pitt, West Virginia, and Syracuse to leave the Big East early, many expected that Big East teams could reap some significant benefits. That's not necessarily the truth, according to associate commissioner Nick Carparelli.The three teams produced a fee of more than $32 million for the Big East. But all of that money won't be ending up in the hands of member institutions:
"One of the misconceptions is that we have this pile of money sitting in a bank," Carparelli said. "A lot of those payments are staggered over a period of years, so it’s not at our disposal just yet. In addition, we’ve incurred a lot of expenses throughout this process: legal expenses, consultants. It’s money well spent. We don’t know what all those expenses are just yet. So the prudent thing to do is to figure out what our expenses are, use that money to pay them and then divide up the remaining amount among the ongoing members."
Yeah, hadn't really given that much thought, I'll admit. None of the cases with Pitt and West Virginia went to court, but there were still some legal costs, to be sure. Makes you wonder how much each school is going to get after the rent's been paid.
For the sake of the argument, let's assume all current members would get payouts. Even if all of that money was available, you're talking about $2.4 million per school. That's a nice chunk of change, but not a staggering amount by any means. Then factor in the expenses and the fact that some of it will be paid out over a period of time, and the amount we're talking about on an annual basis is significantly smaller.