Bearcats Breakfast 9.21.11

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Big East officials met last night and appear to be keeping the band together. The Pac-12 said it will halt expansion and stay at 12.

Peace and sanity, temporarily, returns to the college athletics landscape. We will see for how long, though. Apparently, according this ultimate insider update of the situation from Pete Thamel at the New York Times, the BE is looking for established major programs to fill the void left by Syracuse and Pitt.

Here was my post from yesterday afternoon with comments from Bob Arkeilpane and Butch Jones on the situation.

With the Big 12 negotiating a way to keep their conference together in its current form, that could mean selecting from any of the independent schools (Navy and Air Force were brought up as previous targets prior to the Pitt/Syr move) or a number of smaller institutions. UCF and East Carolina (who submitted an application) are among those.

That is the situation for now. Here's Dr. Saturday attempting to explain. The way developments have unfolded, I expect it all to be different by tomorrow.

Let's eat...

--- Armon Binns returns!
Congrats to Armon, who was added to the Bengals practice squad Tuesday. Binns was cut by Jacksonville in the preseason. The injury to Jordan Shipley forced Marvin Lewis to bring Andrew Hawkins (yes, younger brother of Artrell) on to the 53-man roster. Binns takes his spot on the PS.

I'll catch up with Armon today and hopefully have some quotes for you from him tomorrow or on Twitter (@pauldehnerjr) this afternoon.

--- Mick Cronin spoke about the chaos for the first time to Bill Koch and shed confident light on the subject. He doesn't sound concerned in the least.

--- Big week for the Big East. The non-conference season hasn't been as disastrous as last year's to this point, but not a major rebound either. The conference is 4-6 against other AQs with South Florida's win over Notre Dame the highlight.

It can be viewed as a strong non-con, however, if the Big East can capitalize on home-field advantage this week. UC hosts N.C. State, Pitt hosts Notre Dame and West Virginia hosts LSU.

If the BE can win two of the three, certainly the image of the league would receive a boost as it starts to enter conference play. (For whatever that's even worth anymore)

Andrea Adelson at ESPN posted a video blog on the topic.

College Gameday will be in Morgantown. I am guessing they won't be taking the extra set with the casual couch setup for fear of burning.

--- Thursday will be the return to Cincinnati for Tom O'Brien. The St. X grad always recruited Cincinnati heavily -- at BC and now NC State. He has three players from the area on the current team.

The News-Observer talks about it in the second note.

--- Thursday will be the rare UC home game against a non-con AQ opponent. It's only the third time it has happened since joining the Big East. In 2007, UC hosted Oregon State and won 34-3. Last year, they hosted Oklahoma at Paul Brown Stadium and lost 31-29.

--- This game will also be a showcase for one of the great venues in college football. It may not be JerryWorld in Dallas or the NFL facility of Paul Brown Stadium, but few places exist in college football with the history, allure and aesthetics of a premier night game at The Nipp.

I asked DJ Woods and Alex Hoffman what their favorite Nippert moments were yesterday.

Here was Hoffman with an excerpt many UC fans have similar memories of:

"My favorite one I can remember in general was when we won the Orange Bowl game. I was looking around, like Holy Moly, this is chaotic, this is awesome. When the student section rushed the stadium, I am just standing in the stadium looking around like, 'Wow.'"

Woods with a great visual of what it is like to be a freshman playing college football: 

"Probably my first game. Just because I came from high school, first college game, just to be out there on the field -- that's probably my favorite moment. I have no clue (who we played). But it was the scariest moment of my life. I am out there at punt return trying to catch a ball and remember my contacts fogged up and my mouth got dry and I am shaking on the field, but as soon as I caught the ball I ran as fast as I can."

Hoff went on to talk more about what makes Nippert special. Everyone has their reasons, but if you haven't played for the team it's hard to imagine how strong the connection must be to the place.

"The atmosphere, I love it," he said. "It is on campus, the students, it's just awesome. I have played here for five years now. Just the feel of it is like home. It doesn't matter if it sells out, I just love playing there."

--- Some randomness...

--- Attention tech nerds! iPhone 5 media event is set for Oct. 4. Everyone huddle around the iPads.

--- Shadiness on an online poker site? Say it ain't so. Next thing you know you'll be telling me these Giants players weren't really injured.

--- Bridesmaids comes out on DVD today. Didn't see it yet, but heard it was funny. Any of you go to see the Pearl Jam doc last night? Word is it will be out on DVD in October.

--- Soccer ball unexpectedly
hits kid in the head. Someone alert Dave Coulier.

--- Still cracking up over the Giants player spiking the ball off the intern's face. His complete lack of concern really ties the joke together.

--- One more day. Will you be there?

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