Source: Non-football schools to leave Big East

New York — A person familiar with the decision tells The Associated Press the conference's seven non-football members have decided to break away from the Big East.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity Thursday night because some officials from those schools are still sorting through details and trying to figure how best to separate from the conference. No official announcement is imminent.

The seven schools that do not play FBS level football are St. John's, Georgetown, Marquette, DePaul, Seton Hall, Providence and Villanova. Officials at those schools have concerns about the direction of the conference and feel as if they have little power to influence it.

Commissioner Mike Aresco conferred by phone with the leaders of those seven schools earlier in the day, according to another person familiar with the situation, also speaking on condition of anonymity.

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