ON A CONFERENCE call yesterday among the 14 Big East athletic directors, Villanova's Vince Nicastro, well-placed sources said, reiterated the university's position that when it comes to expansion, the conference needs to be cognizant of the marketplaces it's already in, as well as those it's considering entering.
The message is clear: Philadelphia already has a Big East presence. It just doesn't have one in football, at least not since Temple was asked to leave in 2004.
The Owls, of course, are now being mentioned as a potential all-sports member. Villanova, which has been a part of the Big East for most other sports for the last 3 decades, was set to vote last April to move up from the FCS level and join for football, too. That vote was tabled, in large part because of concerns raised to the Big East by Pittsburgh, which ultimately decided last month to leave for the Atlantic Coast Conference, along with Syracuse.