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Butler, Creighton, Xavier to join new Big East

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Butler, Creighton and Xavier will join the new Big East basketball conference starting in the fall, according to ESPN.

The schools have not officially withdrawn from their current conferences, but an announcement is expected next week.

The new conference will also include the Catholic 7 schools -- DePaul, Georgetown, Marquette, Providence, Seton Hall, St. John's and Villanova. Butler and Xavier are coming from the Atlantic 10 and Creighton from the Missouri Valley.

A source told ESPN Friday night that the conference will plan to expand after the 2013-14 season.

Multiple coaches from the new conference told ESPN that it will play an 18-game, round-robin schedule next season and play its conference tournament at Madison Square Garden.

The Big East began a search for a new commissioner.

The seven Catholic schools are leaving the current Big East to form their own conference while keeping the name. The remaining schools in the current Big East have to come up with a new name by July 1.

Several schools in the current Big East will join other conferences. Pittsburgh, Syracuse and Notre Dame will join the ACC on July 1, Louisville joins the ACC on July 1, 2014, and Rutgers joins the Big Ten on July 1, 2014.

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