Well, you know the whole Leaving The Big East thing was going to become an issue sooner or later. And so it begins with the news that the Syracuse Orange will play the Arkansas Razorbacks in the Big East/SEC Challenge.
This was, apparently, news to Syracuse.
Upon hearing that Syracuse was being scheduled to play a road game in the upcoming challenge, DOCTOR Gross fired off an email to Big East associate commissioner Tom Odjakjian expressing his displeasure:
"OJ this is premature as we are over committed and can't play at this point.
I wish we could have agreement as you have put us all in what could be an embarrassing situation
We are not confirmed. I find it amazing that there is no discussion to make a better plan. We have been collegial with the Big East yet it appears that there is no willingness to cooperate."
We had a feeling that the Big East was going to try and stiff Pittsburgh and us this season when it came to scheduling. I'm not sure if this qualifies as "stiffing" but having us play on the road and not inserting Pitt into the series at all (which they're shocked about) certainly skirts the edges.
The issue apparently stems from the fact that Syracuse hosted Florida last year and played Florida on a "neutral" court in Tampa the year before, not fulfilling the part of the contract that requires Syracuse to play a true road game (who knew).
So does this mean the game won't happen? Well it sounds like cooler heads may have prevailed.
"Communication has been poor until today where (Big East interim commissioner) Joe Bailey and I have had some constructive discussion and (are) trying to work out a solution,'' Gross said in a text message.
"Hopefully, we will have (the situation) resolved soon,'' Gross said in a separate text.
What does that mean? No idea. Could mean SU will bow out. Could mean the game will move to a neutral location like, say, Madison Square Garden (teeheehee). Plus, the game was also announced on the SU Athletics site but that link is now dead. So clearly something's in the works.