February 21, 2013

Maybe I’m actually tired of expansiopocolypse. Or maybe this one doesn’t seem worth the effort.

It started with a report from a 247 site. That the Big Ten would give an offer to UNC to join, and probably take Virginia (or GT or FSU) to make it an even 16. Sure the Baylor and Clemson iterations were dead wrong over the summer, but since this came from a Maryland one. And they got it right with Maryland to the Big Ten, it has to be true. Forget that Maryland-based rumor reports of the end of the ACC at the hands of the B1G could well be the next version of West Virginia-based rumor reports of the end of the ACC at the hands of the Big XII.

Take a breath.

Would the Big Ten like to add UNC and UVa? Probably if they want to go to 16. Delany has made it clear that it is now all about TV markets. It would fit with his East Coast interests and would be geographically contiguous. Is there really an offer to UNC? Maybe. There have been plenty of people saying that UNC has had a standing offer from the Big Ten for years.

I’m just not seeing UNC going anywhere.

1. ACC exit fees. Maryland and the ACC are involved in a lawsuit over the $50 million exit fees. The trial is proceeding, as the motion for dismissal by Maryland was rejected this week. No one is leaving the ACC until they see what they have to pay.

2. UNC is the ACC. Maryland fans were very split on this decision because of their history in the ACC. In the end Maryland left because they are in such a financial mess, they have no real choice. Now think about UNC. Their finances are fine. They have long been the center of ACC power. Maybe not as much as it used to be, but they hold a lot of influence in the conference (real and perceived). As we saw with Texas and the Big XII, power and influence over a conference is a strong deterrent to leaving.

3. State politics. Yes, it took a pedophile to get Pennsylvania to get involved with one of the major state universities, but most other states are not that hands off. Especially when there is more than one prominent university with athletic aspirations, political power and money.

Think about the fight in Texas when the Pac-10 came knocking. How Baylor (a private school, no less) started fighting to stay relevant with as much political pressure as it could bring. Texas Tech would have been brought along to placate state politics and Texas A&M got really ticked. How Texas A&M finally got to go to the SEC — thanks in no small part to political support from their alumni governor.

UNC and NC State are under the same state education board. You really think the NC State faction would support them leaving the conference that easily? You don’t think political pressure would be brought by Wake Forest and Duke?

How about in Virginia where political pressure was used to force VT into the ACC in the 2003 raid of the Big East? Think it would be that easy for Virginia to leave the ACC? No matter how much VT makes googly eyes to the SEC, until they get that invite they aren’t going to easily let Virginia go B1G.

4. They may not be the real targets. This might be the long-con. Delany has to know that UNC is extremely unlikely to go anywhere. But to let it out about an offer adds to the air of abrupt instability in the ACC. The schools that would be easier to persuade, and not have to worry about messy state politics become even more eager. I’m thinking Florida State and Georgia Tech. They fit academically. They are in very desirable areas for population growth, media markets and recruiting territories.

Take a breath.

Big 12 maybe a house of cards but I don’t think that the Big Ten or SEC want their cards. That is the point. You can never make such an absolute statement “that NC will NEVER go to the Big Ten”. The ACC is not as stable as you assume. Florida State and Clemson were threatening to leave within the last year alone. I believe that the ACC is a much better conference than the Big XII but right now the Big Ten, SEC and PAC 12 hold all the cards.

Comment by Floyd 02.22.13 @ 9:38 am

Oooh I like the addition of TCU into the ACC,
gets the ACC into Texas, specifically Dallas/Ft. Worth. And opens up Texas a little more for recruiting purposes.

Oh I like it. They should make me commissioner. lol

Comment by EMel 02.22.13 @ 9:38 am

PAC 12 does not hold many cards… they have no expansion options…other than hoping Texas and her consorts want to join them.

Other than that, they have NOTHING.

The ACC has what they all wanted….Notre Dame.
Granted for now it’s on a limited basis, but that could change in a couple years.

Comment by EMel 02.22.13 @ 9:41 am

I’ve hired a couple Ninja’s btw to get rid of Delaney.

Don’t tell anyone !

Comment by EMel 02.22.13 @ 9:45 am

I agree Emel that ND was a big get for the ACC but that doesn’t mean that the conference is not vulnerable. I think the next few years are going to be crucial for the ACC. The further the next expansion moves are pushed down the road, the better for the ACC. I’m concerned that Delaney will strike again in the short term. Let’s hope that the ACC strikes a richer tv deal in the near future.

Comment by Floyd 02.22.13 @ 9:52 am

honest question… what does the ACC get for ND? Given their own seat at the BCS table with conference commissioners, and own TV $, why would they ever fold football into a conference?

@ sfpitt, LMAO “Man they have to go a long way just to take a piss.” haha, funny…

good stuff on the conferences, thanks… seems if ACC could lock up more TV $ that would take short term heat off? as Frankcan said, why wouldn’t ESPN step up and support football partner?

Comment by Pittscript 02.22.13 @ 10:11 am

also out there if nd goes to big ten , acc left alone ,i say full mem. or go

Comment by paul shannon 02.22.13 @ 11:19 am

TCU will have to improve greatly in BB though…..the ACC really wants to have the best BB conference. Would be great for FB though. I’m sure they would greatly like to improve their BB program, but is a Texas school right for us?

Comment by Jackagain 02.22.13 @ 3:14 pm

I would love to see ND go to the B1G….they can have them. Who wants 1-2 loses in BB to them every year?

I agree Paul…all or nothing…unless they agree to go all in after NBC drops their mutual FB contract.

Comment by Jackagain 02.22.13 @ 3:17 pm

What do you mean you can never make an absolute statement like NC will never go to the Big Ten? I just did!
I get your point, but I don’t agree with it. The Big ten would take UT in less time than it takes Mac Brown to comb his hair. UT is a great school with smoking hot women. Texas is a huge state with huge TV markets! Anyone who doesnt want them in their conference is a fool.

Comment by SFPitt 02.22.13 @ 5:24 pm

RE ACC tv revenue – there seem to be a lot of “experts”. Forbes recently reported on total revenue by conference which shows ACC got an avg of $20M per team in TV money alone last year:

link to

I don’t know who is right, but I see no reason to trust any of the other sources any more than Forbes.

Comment by Hokie Mark 02.22.13 @ 8:45 pm

If NC and VA want to leave the ACC for the B1G let them pay the $50,000,000 exit fee and leave. With MD already leaving, that’s $150,000,000 in the ACC coffers. Somehow I don’t see these schools throwing away $50,000,000, but…

Comment by MariettaMike 02.23.13 @ 8:21 am

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