ESPN Is Now Trotting Out Anyone It Can To Tell You It Had Nothing To Do With Boning The Big East

The folks in Bristol are getting a little defensive over those rather inconvenient comments made by Boston College AD Gene DeFilippo, who said ESPN had influenced the ACC's decision to expand by swiping Pitt and Syracuse from the Big East. An unnamed spokesman for the Worldwide Leader has already issued the requisite denial to the New York Times, but the story has gained such traction since first being published in Sunday's Boston Globe that ESPN felt the need to take its case a step further by completely misrepresenting the statements of two people who had nothing to do with any of it.

The above tweet is from Mike Soltys, ESPN's vice president of communications, whom we last saw escorting Craggs off the premises for showing up at a meeting at HQ to which Craggs had been invited. The link inside the tweet is to a story in the Newport News (Va.) Daily Press, and in it ADs Craig Littlepage of Virginia and Jim Weaver of Virginia Tech both admit they were "unaware" of any role ESPN played in the ACC's decision-making—an acknowledgement that is certainly not the same as a denial—with Weaver even entertaining the notion that ESPN's fingerprints could still have been all over this:

"Maybe there was some input from ESPN that I don't happen to know about."

Something else Soltys might have noticed had he actually read the Daily Press's story: Neither Littlepage nor Weaver was on the ACC's expansion panel. But DeFilippo was.