Wednesday, December 19, 2012

It's Time to Ditch the Big 5

I know, old people love it, and there have been some pretty good games over the years, but now, with Villanova moving to a new conference, and an increased emphasis on out of conference scheduling needed in order to get at-large bids for the NCAA tournament or earn additional revenue, I was thinking that now is the time to pull out of the city series.

Don't get me wrong, the Big 5 was a great institution before the end of the original iteration of it. There were five teams that were generally competitive nationally, and the doubleheaders at the Palestra were a sight to behold for anyone who loves college basketball.

Since it was brought back 15 years ago though, the Big 5 is a shell of what it once was, and the current crop of Villanova students give off a vibe of not seeing those schools as rivals. This is problematic now that Villanova will be in a conference that does not include Syracuse, Louisville, or Pittsburgh. None of the Big Five games can sell out the Wells Fargo Center, which is something Villanova must be able to do out of conference, since they cannot rely on getting 20,000 people in an arena to play against DePaul or Seton Hall.

In order to boost Villanova's out of conference schedule, and its revenue generating ability, they must remove their commitment from playing four local schools that don't draw crowds nearly as well as national powers. In its new (weaker) conference environment, Villanova must schedule home and home series' against national powers, and setting aside four out of conference games every year makes it more difficult to do that.

It's time to get bold, leave the Big 5.

1 comment:

  1. The Big 5, like the Big East, has been made obsolete by the passage of time. Could not agree more with your sentiment.