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Are Siena Saints Joining The Catholic Seven? – Bruce’s Thought Of The Day

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A juicy rumor has emerged involving the Siena Saints and one of the most powerful groups in college basketball.

According to NBC Sports Talk host John Feinstein, the possibility of the Siena Saints jumping from the MAAC Conference to the new Catholic Seven Conference has been discussed. That new Catholic Seven is in its infancy. What the conference will be named is up for grabs. What TV network will be televising their games is up for grabs. At last word, ESPN and FOX were talking to the new league. Expansion beyond the seven is also very much on the table and that is where Siena fits in.

A catholic school with a great arena, that is regionally sensible and has past success makes Siena attractive. A small enrollment might hurt, but if the possibility is there no question, in my opinion, that Siena should seize it.

Now there are still many variables and moves to make before this new conference starts up play but this much is known for certain: the Catholic Seven, prior to any expansion, reeks of college basketball success.

Start with Georgetown. Move to St.John’s. How about Villanova. How does Marquette hit you? Depaul, Seton Hall and Providence finish it off. All these schools have had success, and are some of the most popular programs in college basketball.

The Hoyas, Nova, and Marquette have all won national titles. St. John’s is top 12 in all time Division I wins and has played in the Final Four. The Hall played and lost to Michigan for the national title. Providence went to the Final Four. Depaul was a Chicago power with the great Ray Meyer but has fallen on hard times recently. But all of the schools in this league have a great pedigree.

Now this isn’t to run down Siena’s currect conference foes. There are some nice programs in the MAAC. Loyola Maryland, Iona, and Fairfield immediately come to mind to name three. But let’s call it for what it is, this isn’t former Big East talent with Big East quality and neither are the dollars I am assuming that will be had if a move is made.

For now all parties are saying the usual stuff. “Nothing has been settled,” and  ”a move is doubtful”. This may be the case, but think about the logic if you are Siena.

The Catholic Seven or former Big East or whatever the name will be will need more teams. Oh, the rumors of who might jump to the new league are out there. From Butler to Gonzaga to who knows who else have been discussed. We can fill in more possibilities and start rumors because it makes sense for so many teams to want to join. And if they decide not to just be a conference for Catholic schools the possibilities are endless.

Now let me come clean: I am a Big East fan. Oh, yes, I go back to the heyday of the conference. A smokey Madison Square Garden and Pearl, Walter, Ronnie, Rollie, Louie, Ricky, and so many many many more big names. Patrick and Alonzo. P.J. and Big John. Oh, the memories. Oh, the battles. Oh, the passion. But let me progress and look ahead. I am excited about the new conference if only because I have to embrace it as a S.t John’s fan. I also live in the Capital Region now and would LOVE to see Siena in a “power” conference.

Just think Saints fans: the money involved alone could help the school in so many ways. The prestige, the competition. A sold out arena to see the Hoyas on a regular basis.

I realize if this were to go down so many things would have to be worked out. But if the Saints are offered the chance they should jump, no, leap. No, fly, into the deal. It is a no-brainer.

I hope to land Siena Athletic Director John D’Argenio on the radio program in the next few days (Game On, 3-7 p.m. on 104.5 The Team, ESPN Radio). The questions will be asked but will they be answered if they be answered at this time.

 

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