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Big East adds TCU, switch official in 2012

November 30, 2010

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— TCU is getting out of future debates about whether the Horned Frogs deserve to be in a BCS game. They are joining a league with automatic access.

The Frogs won’t have to be a BCS buster when they move to the Big East Conference, starting with the 2012 season. Win their new league and they will be guaranteed a spot in one of the big-money games.

In the latest restructuring of the college football landscape, TCU’s board of trustees unanimously approved an invitation Monday to join the Big East in football and all other sports. The move from the Mountain West Conference becomes official July 1, 2012.

TCU athletic director Chris Del Conte said gaining automatic-qualifying status “was a big factor” in the move and gives the Horned Frogs “the greatest opportunity to compete for the national championship.”

The Big East, currently with eight football teams, has one of six automatic BCS slots.

“Access got easier, not the road,” said Frogs coach Gary Patterson, whose third-ranked Frogs (12-0) wrapped up their second consecutive undefeated regular season and Mountain West title with a 66-17 win at New Mexico on Saturday.

TCU is third in the BCS standings — the highest-ranked non-automatic qualifying team.

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