You are viewing this article in the archives. For the latest breaking news and updates in Ann Arbor and the surrounding area, see
Posted on Mon, May 17, 2010 : 1:55 p.m.

Big Ten athletic directors wrestle with expansion rumors

By Dave Birkett

CHICAGO - Wisconsin athletic director Barry Alvarez gets questions on Big Ten expansion all the time.

“People want to know what’s going on,” Alvarez said Monday from the Big Ten spring meetings in Chicago. “But no one has any answers for them. None of us do, anyhow.”


Wisconsin athletic director Barry Alvarez, shown in 2005, says he is getting a lot of questions about Big Ten expansion, but he doesn't have any answers. (Photo: Associated Press)

Alvarez said he expects Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany to update conference athletic directors and coaches on expansion sometime in the next two days, but “I don’t think there’s really much gone on,” he said.

Delany is expected to meet with the media on Tuesday.

Since the Big Ten announced in December it was exploring expansion, speculation has centered around a host of Big East (Rutgers, Pitt, Syracuse) and Big 12 schools (Missouri, Nebraska) and Notre Dame joining the league.

The 11-team Big Ten could expand by one, three or five teams.

“I think there’s been a curiosity,” Alvarez said. “Where it’s going, where we’re going and what if anything’s been happening. There’s been so many rumors out there I think everyone wants to know if there’s any facts to those. I think none of us are aware of anything that’s gone on.”

Michigan athletic director Dave Brandon said he hasn't been briefed on where expansion stands, but he said he's "intensely interested in anything that’s going to have implications for the future of the Big Ten conference."

"It’s a complex set of issues," Brandon said. "There’s a lot of rumors out there and based on what I’ve been told they’re just that, they’re rumors. And it’s a process that has been taking place for quite some time. It’s become very public more recently and it’ll be great to get an update on where we stand in the process."

Dave Birkett covers University of Michigan football for He can be reached by phone at 734-623-2552 or by e-mail at Follow him on Twitter @davebirkett.



Mon, May 17, 2010 : 3:49 p.m.

The Big Ten is making a BIG MISTAKE playing chicken with Notre Dame.You may not like Notre Dame.But they can,and will do what the want to anytime they want to.They are a Professional College Football Team.They generate more money than some NFL teams.Nobody,and i mean nobody knows how much money Notre Dame football makes,except Notre Dame.They have every network in there pocket.I don't like it either.As Walter Cronkite used to say.Thats the way it is.