With Loyola, Md. announcing on Wednesday it was leaving for the Patriot League next season, a quick name that surfaced as a potential replacement in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference was Quinnipiac University.
I exchanged emails with QU athletics director Jack McDonald on Thursday morning about whether his school would be looking to join the MAAC.
“These are interesting times in intercollegiate athletics and I am sure all Presidents and Athletic Directors are watching how these changes will impacts their institutions, athletic programs and conferences,” McDonald wrote. “Quinnipiac is very pleased with our membership in the Northeast Conference and we are planning on another successful 2012-13 season in the NEC.”
Translation: QU is content for now in the NEC, but who knows what might happen in the future.
On Wednesday, Fairfield AD Gene Doris said he was not sure if, or how quickly, the MAAC would even fill the void left by Loyola heading to the Patriot League.
The addition of Quinnipiac to the MAAC would certainly be an easy travel adjustment for the other schools since the Hamden-based university would be within an hour or two of seven of the conference schools. Canisius and Niagara would be the acceptions.
Also, the $52 million TD Bank Sports Center that opened in 2007 would be an attractive place to play for the other schools. Retired Boston Globe writer Bob Ryan called it “showcase facility of New England” for college basketball.
William S. Paxton covers local college sports for Connecticut Post and the Hearst Media Group.
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