It's been a long summer for the Tigers. Our scheming, sell-out of a coach pull the rug out from under us and took our recruits to UK. Our (statistically) best basketball season was officially erased from the incredibly judicious NCAA record books. Due to theft, injuries and an insatiable desire for Asian culture, our current basketball roster has been trimmed to a mere eight scholarship players. Not to mention, our football team has been smoked like a North Memphis lazy afternoon by two of our nearby rivals (unfortunately lacking the euphoric, carefree after-effects).
Yet, sometimes, you must go through a season of tribulation to become stronger and better. Either that or you have an athletic director who fears for his cushy job and decides to make an effort.
RC Johnson has just hired Mike Tranghese, the former Big East Commissioner, to do some consulting for the Memphis Tigers. Johnson proceeds to emerge from his hole and make large claims about how Memphis wants to join the SEC, but that he really just wants to get into a BCS conference.
Wow, RC. You've really stepped your game up. What's gotten into you?
Before Memphis fans get too excited, hear Tranghese loud and clear when he says, “I can’t get people into conferences. That’s not what I do.”
No wonder this guy is such good friends with RC Johnson.
There's a rumor floating around that Memphis and UCF will be joining the Big East in the next six months. Mind you, this rumor started on a Mississippi radio call-in show.
Needless to say, don't expect anything to happen anytime soon. Memphis needs to improve their football facilities before a move is made. Forget about the SEC. There's no chance a thirteenth team will be added and even less of a chance that a third school from the state of Tennessee will be added. The SEC wants to expand its influence. Memphis cannot offer them that. There are as many Tennessee fans in the city of Memphis as Memphis fans (for football, at least), so there is little motivation for the SEC to expand here.
The Big East is pretty full, too. The main rumor flying is that Memphis will replace DePaul in basketball. However, the Big East is already very basketball heavy. They may not want to add another team who can compete for a top spot. They may want to preserve some knockaround teams so the big boys can pad their record.
Regardless, nothing has materialized other than RC putting forward a moderate effort in the PR portion of the athletic department. Does it sound good to consult with the former Big East Commish? Of course. Will it make any difference in the end? Not according to the Big East Commish. Time will tell.
As always, Tiger fans... pray.