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Niumatalolo likes Navy’s challenge in the Big East

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NEW YORK » Navy is headed to the Big East, giving up more than 130 years of football independence.

The Big East announced Tuesday that the U.S. Naval Academy has accepted an invitation to join the league for football only, starting in 2015. The conference has now added six new members in the last seven weeks after losing three members and having another school renege on a future commitment in the fall.

“Stability in the Big East was a very important aspect in our discussions with the commissioner,” Vice Admiral Michael Miller, superintendent of the U.S. Naval Academy, said during a teleconference. “What we see is a very bright future for the conference.”

Navy has been playing football since 1879 without conference affiliation, but academy officials said they believe independence will be too difficult to maintain as other powerful leagues grow.

“We have a definite challenge ahead of us,” said coach Ken Niumatalolo, who is a Radford High and UH alum. “I feel like there’s drift happening between the haves and have-nots (in major college football), and I want to be with the haves.”

Athletic director Chet Gladchuk said the Army-Navy game will remain on the second Saturday in December.

Texas AD wants Brown to stay

Texas athletic director DeLoss Dodds says he’s committed to keeping football coach Mack Brown for as long as Brown wants to stay.

Texas regents are scheduled to consider a four-year contract extension on Thursday that would keep the 60-year-old Brown at Texas at least until 2020.

Brown is paid $5.2 million a year.

Mike Stoops is new DC at Oklahoma

Mike Stoops has received a three-year contract that will pay him $600,000 annually to be the defensive coordinator for Oklahoma.

The university’s board of regents approved the deal on Tuesday.

Regents also had to approve a nepotism waiver because Stoops will be working with his brother, Bob.

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