Big East mailblog

Let's take a look into the mailbag.

Dylan Miller in Winchester, Ky., writes: Hello Andrea, I recently read your article on Rose Murphy, Teddy's mom. First off let me say I'm a grown 6-foot-5, 220-pound 21-year-old man and I cried when I read it. As a fellow son of a survivor I can totally relate to what Teddy went through. It was the hardest thing I've ever had to do, watching the woman who gave you life fight to keep hers. Thank you for not only writing a wonderful article, but bringing breast cancer awareness to readers out there. You have certainly inspired me and other readers to NEVER give up hope. Thanks for your time keep up the great work. Fight like a girl, and GO CARDS!

Andrea Adelson: Thank you, Dylan. I have received so many positive comments about this story, I am humbled. Breast cancer has affected several people close to me. Two loved ones are fighting right now, so I wanted to be sure first and foremost that Ms. Murphy's strength came through, to give others fighting cancer the same hope she had during her battle and still has today. We have about a week left in Breast Cancer Awareness month, but we should not need only 31 days to be reminded this disease robs us family and friends. But where there is darkness, there is also light -- and the incredible fighters and survivors like Ms. Murphy who serve to inspire us each and every day.

Steve Terrano in Dallas, Ga., writes: Why is the ACC seen as a better football conference then the Big East. I wish the Big East would play them more head to head. I watch both leagues weekly, there are very overrated. Am I just blind or what. Thanks for your time.

Adelson: I am not sure it is seen as a better conference, but a more stable conference. The ACC has not lost its flagship members, and has had recent stability at the top. Commissioner John Swofford is well respected in the college football community and has been proactive in making sure his league retains its stability, adding Pitt and Syracuse and Notre Dame in all sports but football. It is clear the Big East is better this year, given where it stands in the conference power rankings. Unfortunately, two raids in the last 10 years have damaged the national perception of the Big East to the point that folks do not even want to listen to the facts.

BIGPGM in N.J. writes: Hey Andrea, If this seventh bowl game gets eliminated before it starts, couldn't that be a good thing for the Big East? According to my understanding of the system: Champions: Big 12, SEC; Rose: Big Ten, Pac-12; Orange: ACC; Fiesta: Unknown Bowl Playoff; Unknown Bowl Playoff. As such, there is at least one potential bowl in the six-bowl system, where the best of the rest champion could potentially get slotted. I say one, because if the Rose Bowl and Champions Bowl are playoff sites for a given year, then those games would probably be shifted to one of the "unknown" bowls, unless there were higher ranked teams. Wouldn't the Big East rather get into one of these bowls with about a $60 million payout than a No. 7 bowl making $25 million? My take is that if they do not make a slot for the other conferences, they are asking for investigation and likely litigation. Your thoughts?

Adelson: Well, there are no more guarantees that a Big East conference champion gets in, first and foremost. That is what the oversight committee decided when it eliminated automatic qualifying status. Now, you note that five conferences retain tie-ins to these games, giving their champions an automatic home. But the Big East has no tie-in. We have not been told yet about how this future selection committee is going to choose the teams for the remaining slots. We have already gone down this road re: anti-trust issues. Perhaps they will make some sort of allowance for a team finishing in X spot being automatically selected. But until we know the ground rules, I am going to lean toward saying it is a negative for the Big East not to be guaranteed a darn thing.

Bob in North Wales, Pa., writes: How about this possibility of Temple adding Hawaii to the schedule? That would increase their bowl chances big time. They'd just have to beat Army, Hawaii, and either Pitt or Syracuse. Not a lock for a young team, but doable.

Adelson: Well certainly the chances go up if you play another game. But I am not ready to say Temple is bowl bound because it is considering going to play Hawaii. I do, however, think this is a smart move on the part of the Temple administration. The thought of playing only 11 games this season has to be tough, so I appreciate that it is being proactive in trying to fill out its schedule.

Adam in Stonington, Conn., writes: Hi Andrea, Enjoy your blog a lot. I have been a UCONN fan for a long time. Unlike some, I remember before they were D-I and tend to think they are still a young program that doesn't bring in the talent needed to complete on the big stage. With that said, Coach (Paul) Pasqualoni has to go. The offense is just embarrassing. Even when they have done good things (like the first half against Temple), the play-calling turned conservative. Their defense, to me, is more talented than usual and all they have done is regressed week by week. I don't see UCONN doing better than 4-8....please tell me they are gonna fire Pasqualoni! He has completed destroyed any potential positives that could have come out of the Fiesta Bowl trip.

Adelson: I have not and will not advocate for a coach losing his job. I make a note when coaches are on the hot seat, but ultimately the final decision rests in the hands of the school's administration. That being said, Pasqualoni has underperformed. I had UConn as a sleeper team this season, so I thought there would be improvement but this team looks worse now than last year. And last season looked pretty bad.

Bobby in Denver writes: Where is the love for Coach (Kyle) Flood in regards to any coach of the the year awards. Watching ESPN today, there is a lot of credit being given to coaches who have done little compared to coach Flood. On the shortest of notice he saved an awesome recruiting class, and has lead his team to a 7-0 record. While replacing all but one member of the previous coaching staff. Sounds to me like everything coach of the year is... success amid adversity.

Adelson: I had him as my midseason Big East coach of the year, does that count? I hear your point, but there are a lot of coaches who have worked wonders this season, from Bill Snyder to Mike Riley to even David Cutcliffe. It is going to be hard to choose one winner for national coach this year.