In the aftermath of the ACC Grant of Rights, it has been a lot of fun to take potshots at the numerous Hoopie message boarders and Twitiots who have spent the better part of a year flogging their sources for the imminent demise of the ACC.
The rumors and whispers of an ACC grant-of-rights have no basis in fact.
The beleaguered conference is not close to signing a grant-of-rights and discussions about one have been met with stiff internal resistance.
Internal resistance that my sources say could only be overcome by a significant increase in television money that puts the ACC on par with the Big 10, Big 12, Pac 12 and SEC.
Money like that could only come from a 24-hour ACC branded sports channel much like the Big 10 Network or the upcoming SEC Network and that doesn’t seem likely. Why not? Why shouldn’t the ACC, with perhaps the largest media footprint of any conference, be able to launch its own network?
It’s simple economics — ESPN won’t let them. ESPN owns the ACC’s tier 3 television rights (along with Raycom) and doesn’t want the ACC competing (in much the same markets) with the SEC channel set to debut in 2014.
I don’t think there was an ACC-based blog or twitter account that didn’t either get directly hit with this stuff or had to address it in some form from a reader for the past year.