The seven Catholic schools breaking away from the Big East Conference reportedly will retain the league's name.
ESPN.com reported Thursday the seven schools -- DePaul, Georgetown, Marquette, Providence, St. John's, Seton Hall and Villanova -- will break away on July 1 and according to league bylaws they have the power to keep the league name. However, it is unclear how much it cost them to keep the Big East name.
The new league is expected to add Creighton, Dayton and St. Louis in 2014 to create a 12-team league. However, it is unclear whether the Catholic 7 schools or the former Big East schools get the contract to the conference basketball tournament in Madison Square Garden, a huge money-maker.
The seven schools are expected to be joined by Xavier and Butler, ESPN.com reported. However, those schools have yet to formally withdraw from the Atlantic 10 Conference, which could cost them $2 million each if they do it with less than a year's notice.
The move by the Catholic 7 could also spur the departure of Notre Dame from the Big East to the Atlantic Coast Conference this summer, a year early. Notre Dame officials are also considering spending one season in the new Big East before moving to the ACC.