The Confidential

The ACC Sports Blog

Is Florida State the Next to Leave the ACC?

With the Georgia Tech rumors squashed over the weekend, the rumor mill has turned back to Florida State.  This time, it is a rumor that Florida State is shopping itself around.  You can take the source for whatever it is worth.

One does have to keep in mind that the Florida State fan base is putting a lot of pressure on the administration here.  Somehow, they have rationalized that their football failures are based on lack of revenue, rather than simple things like poor coaching and bad luck. The best case scenario is that Florida State’s leadership has to come out and say that they are happy with the ACC.  This is imperfect because it will just anger the fan base more.  The worst case scenario, of course, is that where there is smoke, there is fire.  Welcome to the Big Ten’s vision of college football–where money is more important than anything else.

The reality is that, unless and until someone does something to stabilize the ACC, it is just going to be one rumor after another.

So what could possible stabilize the ACC?  The Confidential thinks that the only thing that could possible stabilize the ACC is for ESPN to step up and make the ACC a legitimate player from a revenue standpoint.  In the absence of that, there will not be a grant of rights, which would be significantly more protective than the exit fee (whatever it is).  At the very least, the ACC and ESPN should negotiate to allow Florida State to keep its precious Tier III rights.  Throw a dog a bone, even if it is whining for no reason.

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10 thoughts on “Is Florida State the Next to Leave the ACC?

  1. Vinnie Saltine on said:

    the problem with the Media Contract-Arms race is that there will always be a conference that gets more money, or is on the verge of getting more money. ESPN could offer the ACC $30M/school tomorrow, and then when the SEC renegotiates, they’ll get $40M. Then, the B1G will add some middling-football team like SDSU for the Southern California media market and speculate that they are worth $50M/year.

    If the $50M exit fee holds, then it would go a long way in putting the kibosh on these rumors.

    Ultimately though, what needs to happen is for the B1G to find out that they have miscalculated their business model, and that adding teams based on potentially forcing subscribers to pay for their network, turns out to be a failure. (We can call it the BIG TEN NOTWORK*).

    *all rights reserved

    • The $50M, even if it holds, is worthless. The B1G projections are for MD to make $100M more in the first 10 years alone.

      FSU did not leave for the Big XII when it was a $2.5M difference, but FSU would be foolish to not leave if there was a $25M difference. The issue is not the difference, but the scale of the difference.

      • dacuseman on said:

        Actually, the diffeence is about 7-8 mil a year range with the current contract. I am sure it will change but, I must say, that is the one slip up Swofford has had. He should’ve gotten more. other than that, he done very well. And seeing how FSU championed for UL, I doubt they are looking to leave.

        • Not really. To get that number, folks get awful creative in discussing the value of Tier III rights. Or they creative on speculating how much the contracts would be rewritten for with the addition of schools. If the contracts were only increased to give FSU the same share that the current schools receive, the payout would not be that much more.

          In contrast, the B1G is already paying out higher. Plus, with the network, there is no need to renegotiate anything. More profits = more money immediately. Plus, the B1G is up for renegotiation soon. Based on trends, likely to get a lot more… soon.

  2. I agree that somehow the ACC needs to pay FSU $20 million/year to get them to stay. In the absence of a bigger contract, they may have to either (1) get FSU tier 3 rights to its FCS game, and/or (2) go to some unequal distribution. It simply doesn’t make sense to pay Wake Forest the same as Florida State in today’s world.

    • The problem is that Iowa State, Washington State, Ole Miss, Purdue, etc., all get equal revenue now. Going in the other direction will be perceived as a weakness.

      That being said, there are several schools with few options: Wake, BC, Syracuse, Pitt, Louisville, among them. Those 5 schools should be willing to take a 10% shave to give that 10% to a pool to keep the conference intact.

      The best solution would be unequal distribution with a GOR.

    • Vinnie Saltine on said:

      Does the ACC payout equally to the entire conference for bowl games?

      For example, if FSU wins the Orange Bowl, does the entire conference share equally. Or could the ACC decide that winners of Post-Season Bowls (including the ACCCG) get the payouts.

      That way, if FSU wins the Orange Bowl, they get the monies.

  3. dacuseman on said:

    Ga Tech was supposed to be gone by Monday. And then they weren’t. And now they are going nowhere. People are doing a lot of talking out loud without any real sense of what they are talking about using sources that obviously are not very well informed.

  4. The ACC Council of Presidents unanimously agreed to issue a statement Thursday to try and put an end to the speculation once and for all:

    “We, the undersigned presidents of the Atlantic Coast Conference, wish to express our commitment to preserve and protect the future of our outstanding league. We want to be clear that the speculation about ACC schools in negotiations or considering alternatives to the ACC are totally false. The presidents of the ACC are united in our commitment to a strong and enduring conference. The ACC has long been a leader in intercollegiate athletics, both academically and athletically, and the constitution of our existing and future member schools will maintain the ACC’s position as one of the nation’s premier conferences.”

    All 15 ACC university leaders signed the statement.

    The rest of the article is at:

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