John Marinatto resigned as commissioner of the Big East Conference on Monday. In his three years on the job he oversaw seismic changes in the makeup of the conference, earning plenty of praise and criticism along the way. Though the departures of Syracuse and Pittsburgh threatened to sink the conference late last summer, Marinatto also presided over the addition of six schools for the 2013 season to help keep the league afloat.
However his legacy is ultimately judged, it is clear that the constant pressures of the job wore Marinatto down. He admitted as much to the Associated Press when asked about his decision to step down.
"I've been running a marathon not only for the last eight months but for the last 2 1/2 years," he said. "As fulfilling as it can be, it is equally draining. All the assets are in place right now (in the Big East). It's probably time for a commercialized kind of perspective. Clearly the collegiate model is dead."
Marinatto said that he began conferring with conference presidents in April about retiring. He was the conference's third commissioner. Former Miami Dolphins CEO Joseph Bailey III will take over as the interim commissioner while Cincinnati president Gregory Williams chairs the search for a permanent replacement.
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