Big East Commissioner Mike Aresco is working with the officials from the conference's seven nonfootball members to keep the rebuilding league from splitting apart.
A person familiar with the situation tells The Associated Press that Aresco and officials from those seven Catholic schools held a conference call Thursday to discuss the future of the league. Those schools are considering breaking away from the rest of the transitioning league.
Such a break could kill the Big East, but it would most likely not end easily.
The current Big East football membership includes only four schools — South Florida, Connecticut, Cincinnati and Temple — that are committed to the league beyond 2013. But there are 11 schools with plans to join the Big East in the next three years.