Sources: Marinatto to follow Tranghese as Big East commish

Updated: November 11, 2008, 8:59 PM ET
By Pat Forde | ESPN.com

John Marinatto, who has been associated with the Big East since his days as a Providence graduate in 1979, will be announced Wednesday as the new commissioner of the conference, multiple sources told ESPN.com Tuesday night.

The Big East has scheduled an 11 a.m. ET teleconference "to make a significant announcement concerning the direction of the conference."

Marinatto is a current associate commissioner of the league and a former Providence sports information director and athletic director. He has been an assistant to outgoing commissioner Mike Tranghese since 2002.

Tranghese announced his retirement from the position in June 2008, effective at the end of the 2008-09 athletic calendar. Tranghese oversaw the tumultuous but ultimately successful transition of the league after Miami, Virginia Tech and Boston College fled for the Atlantic Coast Conference and were replaced by Louisville, Cincinnati and South Florida in football, plus DePaul and Marquette in basketball.

The transition saw the Big East survive a potentially devastating hit to its football prowess and evolve into a 16-team monster in basketball. The league is widely expected to be the most powerful in the nation in the upcoming basketball season.

The football portion of the Big East retained its BCS automatic bid and has upheld the honor by scoring BCS bowl victories in each of the past three years -- West Virginia in the 2006 Sugar Bowl and 2008 Fiesta Bowl, and Louisville in the 2007 Orange Bowl.

Among those strongly considered for the job was former Big 12 commissioner Kevin Weiberg.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.