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Rutgers reportedly set to join the Big Ten

Courtesy of MCT

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The Big Ten Conference’s footprint looks like it will extend up and down the mid-Atlantic region.

One day after admitting the University of Maryland to the league, the Big Ten’s expansion is expected to continue as the conference is reportedly set to approve Rutgers University’s application Tuesday.

Rutgers, nicknamed the Scarlet Knights, would become the 14th team in the modern history of the Big Ten.

A 2 p.m. press conference with Rutgers president Robert L. Barchi, athletic director Tim Pernetti and Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delany is set to take place on the school’s campus in Piscataway, N.J., Tuesday. 

As part of the move, Rutgers would depart the Big East Conference. The Scarlet Knights football program joined the Big East in 1991. In 1995, Rutgers began to compete in the Big East in all sports.

On Monday, Maryland became the 13th team in modern Big Ten history when its Board of Regents voted “overwhelmingly” to approve the university’s application to the conference. Current Big Ten university presidents then assembled for a Monday teleconference to unanimously approve the school’s admittance. Maryland’s move to the Big Ten will take effect July 1, 2014.

Rutgers football notes

As Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith said during a Monday press conference, football drives much of the revenue generation and interest for the Big Ten and fans of the traditionally Midwestern conference will be happy to know the Rutgers is no slouch on the gridiron.

The Scarlet Knights football program is currently ranked No. 21 in the latest Associated Press poll and the team is in-line for the Big East’s automatic Bowl Championship Series berth by virtue of its 9-1 overall record and its 5-0 in-conference record.

Rutgers completed a $102 million dollar expansion of its football team’s home field, High Point Solutions Stadium, expanding the venue’s capacity to 52,454. With the expansion, High Point Solution Stadium will be the third smallest Big Ten venue – only Northwestern’s Ryan Field (49,256) and Minnesota’s TCF Bank Stadium (50,805) hold fewer fans. 

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