Though there has not been official word yet, the Big Ten and Big East appear set to announce an annual series starting in the 2015-2016 season. Most figure that this event will be similar to the Big Ten-ACC Challenge that is widely regarded as one of, if not, the best early season college basketball event. Adding another similar event would be a major boost to both conferences.
A press conference has been called for 12:30 PM ET tomorrow and the news will likely be announced then. The expectation is pretty widespread at this point that this type of event will be announced.
There are a few things to take from this Big East announcement. First, this means the conference is specifically trying not only to get marquee opponents, but to really promote the conference through exciting non-conference events. It would have been easy to just let things sit and let teams schedule North Dakota State A&M Southern Tech. Instead, this is a move to make sure teams have the non-conference schedule needed to get the late season boost.
The other thing that some have targeted is that this is just another piece of the Big Ten's strategy of increasing their exposure on the East coast. The additions of Maryland and Rutgers were obviously big steps, but the Big Ten is also opening an office in New York City and has made an effort to get more bowl games on the East Coast. The Big East not only has a school located in New York, but also New Jersey and Rhode Island. Getting big games is great, but without a doubt, a part of this plan is to increase the exposure in a target market.
Overall, it's hard to be against this move or see how it hurts the conference. If anything, it at least makes it easier for schools to schedule quality teams. Also, make sure to vote in our poll about some potential Big Ten-Big East matchups that you would like to see.