ACC Expansion Options

With 14 teams, there is still room to add 2 teams… the right “2 teams” into the Atlantic Coast Conference.  This, of course, does not mean that expansion will be happening, much less any time soon.  This post will merely explore the teams that are out there and inquire, of you, what you would prefer to see.

The elephant in the room is Notre Dame.  The Fighting Irish do not want to join a conference.  We discussed yesterday that adding Navy/Notre Dame might be more palatable, as it would convert an OOC opponent into a conference opponent.  But the reality is that Notre Dame simply does not want to join a conference until it absolutely has to.  And many fans do not even deem being excluded from the playoffs such a circumstance.

Navy.  While Navy has a good location, it is not a needle-mover revenue-wise outside of luring Notre Dame. Therefore, adding Navy only happens if Notre Dame comes with them.  And who is to say that Navy even WANTS to be in a P5 conference?

West Virginia.  The Mountaineers are sitting happily in the Big XII.  That being said, adding West Virginia to the ACC would restore several rivalries, as well as some geographic common sense.  The Big XII has a grant-of-rights, so this is not likely to happen anytime soon.

UConn.  The Huskies are a basketball near-elite, even without Jim Calhoun and notwithstanding some tough years.  They are eager to join.  The problem is that they add little or nothing in football–the true revenue sport.  They also add little or nothing on the TV revenue side of things, as Boston College/Syracuse cover the Northeast areas already.  Unlike the above, they are certainly eager to join.

Cincinnati.  Like UConn, Cincinnati is eager to join.  The football has had more historical success and opens up a new market–even if a hugely distant second to Ohio State.  Ohio is also a fertile recruiting ground.  The hoops are not horrible.  They have an NFL stadium nearby to use for the big games.  Don’t rule it out.

Temple.  With historically good hoops, and historically poor football, this seems unlikely.  However, Philadelphia is a potential market to tap–even if Penn State and Pittsburgh generally dominate the state.  Like Cincinnati, Temple would have access to an NFL stadium for big games.  While the football team is perhaps most notable for being in the movie Unbreakable, they have had success with Golden and Ruhle.  Never say never.

Texas.  Ha ha ha.  Just kidding.  Although one might be able to convince Texas to accept a Notre Dame-esque 5-game schedule, it is difficult to envision Texas abandoning Texas Tech for such a membership.  Unless the Big XII is going to die, which is unlikely at this point, Texas need not make a move.

East Carolina.  The fifth North Carolina school finds itself in a similar boat as South Florida and Central Florida.  Just not enough “market” addition to justify adding in a good football school regardless of on-field performance.

Memphis.  The work done by the football team recently is notable, but the hoops has declined to offset any such gains.  There is just not enough here to justify an addition.

And then, of course, there is the “do nothing” option.  Why add any school and water down what is already there?  If ND or Texas are available as permanent members…listen.  But otherwise there is no need to make ANY move.

So here are the options… what do you think?

Imagine the ACC with Notre Dame and Navy

Once upon a time, the Confidential tossed around the idea of Navy as a suitable replacement for Maryland location-wise and as a partner with Notre Dame as the 15th and 16th teams.  Obviously, Notre Dame is not ready for a conference, but they might start inching closer if they are 11-1 and outside the playoffs.  The loss of a 13th game hurt the Big XII last year and could hurt Notre Dame this year–even with a win over Stanford.  While everyone thinks UConn as team #16, and the Confidential has always thought West Virginia made even better sense than UConn, Navy has its merits too.

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Big XII Expansion Update

A few weeks ago, we had some discussion regarding relegation and how the NCAA might look with relegation.   And then we discussed the purely hypothetical–even absurdly hypothetical–circumstance of which school is each conference’s weakest link.  Then we took the absurd one step further and talked about conferences swapping schools.  We thought we were done.  Little did we know that the Big XII would jump back into the discussion… with Oklahoma seemingly parading itself to other conferences and news that five Big XII schools may have raised their skirts for the Big 10 to look at several years ago.  All in all, the Big XII seems particularly unstable.  What does that mean?

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Conference Realignment: A League of their Own

The Confidential has had some fun recently exploring different topics for hypothetical realignment scenarios such as relegation and team trading. While the tectonic shifts of conference realignment have settled since the ACC added a Grant-of-Rights, and the Big XII seems to have resolved their Conference Championship Game dilemma, there has been chatter among some of the private schools that changes could still be on the horizon.

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Conferences Trading Schools: Very Hypothetical

A few weeks ago, we had some discussion regarding relegation and how the NCAA might look with relegation.   And yesterday we discussed the purely hypothetical–even absurdly hypothetical (but not openly hypothetical enough for a few folks to avoid getting their wookies bent)–circumstance of which school is each conference’s weakest link.  So let’s wrap things up with one final circumstance… suppose each of the ACC, Big 10, SEC, and Big XII could swap out one school for another school–which swap of non-elite schools (i.e. nobody is trading Penn State) would be most beneficial for each conference?

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The Conferences’ Weakest Links

A few weeks ago, we had some discussion regarding relegation and how the NCAA might look with relegation.  But what if circumstances were such that the various conferences absolutely had to remove one school without replacing same.  Who would they choose?

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The NCAA and Relegation–Part II of II

In our last article, we discussed the pros and cons of NCAA relegation.  In this article, we will explore it in a bit greater detail–how could the Conferences be aligned in a football-centric way to allow relegation?

The East

Division 1: Florida State, Miami, Clemson, Georgia Tech, Virginia Tech, Pittsburgh, Louisville, North Carolina State

Division 2: Duke, UNC, Wake Forest, Boston College, Virginia, Syracuse, East Carolina, UConn

Division 3 (10): Temple, Marshall, Old Dominion, FIU, FAU, Appalachian State, UMass, Buffalo, Army, Navy

The Midwest

Division 1: Ohio State, Michigan, Penn State, Michigan State, Wisconsin, Nebraska, Iowa, Maryland

Division 2: Minnesota, Cincinnati, Rutgers, Northern Illinois, Indiana, Purdue, Northwestern, Illinois

Division 3 (10): Bowling Green, Ohio, Miami, Akron, Kent State, Toledo, Ball State, Eastern Michigan, Central Michigan, Western Michigan,

The Southeast:

Division 1: Alabama, Auburn, LSU, Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, Arkansas, Texas A&M

Division 2: Ole Miss, Mississippi State, Vanderbilt, Kentucky, Tennessee, Missouri, UCF, USF

Division 3 (9): Middle Tennessee, UAB, Western Kentucky, South Alabama, Georgia Southern, Troy, Georgia State, Southern Mississippi

The Southwest:

Division 1: Texas, Oklahoma, Baylor, Texas Tech, TCU, Oklahoma State, Kansas State, West Virginia

Division 2: Kansas, Iowa State, Houston, Memphis, East Carolina, Tulsa, Tulane, SMU

Division 3 (9) : Rice, UTEP, Texas State, UTSA, North Texas, Louisiana Tech, Arkansas State, Louisiana Lafayette, Louisiana Monroe

The West:

Division 1: USC, UCLA, Stanford, Cal, Oregon, Washington, Arizona, Oregon State

Division 2: Washington State, Utah, Arizona State, Colorado, Colorado State, Boise State, San Diego State, Utah State

Division 3 (10): Fresno State, San Jose State, Hawaii, Wyoming, Nevada, UNLV, New Mexico, New Mexico State, Air Force, Idaho

Total Schools: 80 in Division 1 and 2, 48 in Division 3, plus Notre Dame & BYU =120.  Pretty sure no omissions, but you will let us know.  And there is room for a few more schools to move into the mix from FCS.

Obviously, the last few schools in Division 1 can be tough choices.   Arizona and Oregon State?  Texas Tech?  Excluding Missouri?  Maryland over the rest of the Big 10?  Pitt and North Carolina State?

But that is the beauty of the system–over time, relegation and promotion would fix itself.  And nobody that gets beat up in Division 1 can complain about being dispatched to Division 2.  And the same between Division 2 and Division 3.

What do you think?