Cincinnati wants out of the Big East
Emails obtained by The Enquirer show that Cincy is indeed looking for a way out of the Big East before it crumbles.
"Big 10 and ACC moves … could cause Big 12 perhaps to rethink staying at 10 schools," UC Athletic Director Whit Babcock emailed to President Santa Ono on Nov. 18, before the ACC announced its decision. "We need to focus on both ACC (primarily) but also Big 12."
It's a pretty fair bet that when Cincinnati AD Santa Ono called Tommy Tuberville, he held out the carrot of a move to one of the healthier conferences in the near future. Recall that the ACC added Louisville from the Big East as its 14th member, all but closing the door on the Bearcats.
That leaves the Big 12, the conference Tuberville left.
What would really be bizarre: Cincy somehow finds a way into the SEC, putting Tubs right back in the conference where he's already coached two schools. No one (at least in the modern era) has been the head coach at three different schools, although technically, Paul Bryant would qualify since he coached at Kentucky, Alabama and now SEC member Texas A&M.
There's no indication of mutual interest and Cincinnati probably isn't a good fit geographically, athletically or academically. But in the crazy environment of conference realignment, don't rule anything out.