Talk of Big East and Big 12 merger surfaces

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    Little comment came out of the TCU athletic department Monday following a weekend that saw the defection of two Big East mainstays to the Atlantic Coast Conference.

    The NCAA conference landscape was shaken again by Sunday’s announcement that the University of Pittsburgh and Syracuse University  will be leaving the Big East for the ACC next season.

    Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Chris Del Conte said TCU athletics is in its best position ever, despite the recent shake-up of the Big East.

    “TCU has never been positioned better on the collegiate athletics landscape,” Del Conte said.

    “Coming off a Rose Bowl championship with a new football stadium in place, TCU has tremendous momentum.”

    Del Conte said TCU has been involved in conversations with other schools and officials to ensure TCU’s stability.

    “We are actively engaged in conversations with colleagues across the country to protect TCU’s best interests,” he said.

    Reports surfaced Monday afternoon that officials from the Big 12 and Big East were discussing a possible merger between the two conferences.

    A person involved in the discussions told The Associated Press that school and conference officials from the Big East and Big 12 have been discussing ways to merge what is left of the two leagues if Texas and Oklahoma leave the Big 12.

    The person, speaking on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to talk publicly about what is going on behind the scenes, said Monday that there has been dialogue between athletic directors and high-level officials in the conference offices.

    Texas and Oklahoma are both trying to decide whether to leave the Big 12 for the Pac-12, taking Oklahoma State and Texas Tech with them.