The Confidential

The ACC Sports Blog

How do you solve a problem like Maryland?

This week’s announcement that the ACC presidents have agreed to a Grant of Rights was truly monumental and provides the conference with much needed stability and significantly closes the gap between the power conferences. Moving forward the 14 schools, plus ND, have firmly established themselves as one of the “Have” Conferences and can enjoy the bright future of the ACC.

Everyone is excited about the future…except for Maryland.

Poor Maryland. They went chasing after B1G-time dollars and the Midwestern glitz & glamour, only to find their “former” conference mates have actually improved as a result.


As a Syracuse fan, it was easy to sit and watch the Big East implode after we had accepted the invite from the ACC. In fact, it was entertaining to watch the remaining teams go through wild swings between Conference Solidarity and back-biting. In the end, the Big East’s National-footprint idea proved to be a flop, and it was every man for himself in whatever lifeboat they could find…if they could find one (Hi, UConn).

The outcome is much different (so far) for the ACC. Instead of the rush toward exits after Maryland announced their decision to go to the B1G, the conference ultimately recommitted itself to the future. Sure, there was a lot of in-fighting and second guessing (mostly among the fans), but in the end cooler heads prevailed and the ACC made not just 1 but 2 successful moves to secure the future by bringing in Louisville and by securing a GOR which in turn will result in more money for the ACC’s teams and possibly a network.

Which brings me back to Maryland.

Does the ACC just let Maryland go to the B1G, drop the lawsuit and say “Best Wishes”? Do they continue to press forward with their legal battles?

Or, should the ACC try and convince Maryland that, like GOB Bluth, they made a huge mistake?

I don’t know if Maryland has reached a point of no return, and I don’t know if the ACC is so cuckolded that they will never forgive the Terps, but let’s face it – Maryland belongs in the ACC.

Keep in mind, it will still be a few years until Maryland gets the equal payout from the B1G contract that the rest of the current teams, so maybe it’s time for the ACC and Maryland to make amends, we’ll even let them continue to wear the most hideous uniforms ever.

What do you think? Should the ACC reach out to Maryland and give them a chance to rejoin the conference? Or should the ACC move on without them? Leave your comments below.

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18 thoughts on “How do you solve a problem like Maryland?

  1. If the ACC would let Maryland remain, that would necessitate inviting a 16th football member… I’m sure Cincinnati and Connecticut would like the sound of that, I’m just not sure it makes sense to grow that big when the next largest league only has 14 (plus it would force the B1G to invite a 14th…)

  2. I don’t think the ACC should reach out to Maryland. It would make the conference look weak when it should look strong. And it is strong. But, If Maryland reached out to the ACC and said it was interested in reversing course, I would be open to that as long as they singed that GoR. If UM did come back, I would not be concerned about who the B1G would pursue because they won’t come from the ACC. 🙂

    • Sounds about right. As a State fan, I admit I will miss the team that we beat in arguably the greatest ACC game in history way back in the day. Other than that, though, I really don’t care what the Twerps do.

  3. If it meant that Louisville couldn’t come then I’m against it. With both you would have an uneven numbered football conference until ND goes all in, which doesn’t look like that will happen anytime soon. (I’m still not sure why ND hasn’t gone all in yet since they would actually make more off of the TV contracts but I guess the bowl $ makes it worth it for them.) The B1G would probably replace Maryland with UConn if this were to happen, but it’s highly unlikely to happen.

    • jae1837 on said:

      Tradition. Its hard to shake when you have generations of ND alums who cherished the fact that they were independent and relevant in college football. That’s why we need Navy to join to entice ND as a full member.

      • M. Caffrey on said:

        Funny, at first I read your comment as: “Tradition. It’s hard to shake when you have generations of MD alums who cherished the fact that they were” and thought you were going to talk about the ACC.

        I do like Navy as a partial-member with an agreement comparable to ND’s. Let them each guarantee 5 ACC games, plus 1 game against eachother.

  4. M. Caffrey on said:

    Good points by all. I think the ACC would be foolish to let Louisville go in favor of Maryland (unless it guaranteed that Notre Dame came to the ACC as a full-fledged member, or some other highly unlikely situation that resulted in another “football king” joining the ACC).

    Otherwise, it would be ACC+SU+Pitt+ND(kinda)+L’Ville and MD if they’re interested in coming back.

  5. jae1837 on said:

    What Lenvillecards said, but I would go even further. Follow me on this please:

    1) ACC wants ND. So we stay at 15.
    2) Louisville >>>>>>>>>>>>>>> UMD
    3) UMD sues ACC. As far as I’m concerned, they crossed the Rubicon while giving us the finger. That means we make them pay every dime we can squeeze out of them and use that money to buy back our 3rd Tier rights to form the ACC Network.
    4) Its freaking Maryland and their uniforms hurts the eyes and parts of my brain.
    5) Once a person has proven themselves to be a traitor, never trust them again.

  6. tjcuseacc on said:

    I happen to be a geography fan and like the concept of having representation in contiguous states down the coast. I think it adds to old school solidarity and we don’t look like a patchwork conference (like WV in the Big 12) I would love to see UConn added for that purpose and as much as I don’t like MD leaving I think it would be best for all if they stayed. The idea of living in “ACC Territory” all over the East Coast is great (forgetting I’m in what is supposedly Rutgers Territory).

    I know most people don’t like the idea of expanding further. But I think if UConn or Cincy were added it could possibly knock out the Big 12 altogether.

    • M. Caffrey on said:

      If UConn and Cincy went to the ACC or B1G, then it would still leave Houston, SMU, UCF, USF as potential targets for the B12. That would expand into Texas and give a Florida footprint. If the B12 is adding those 4, then they may as well add Nevada and SDSU.

  7. Orangemeister on said:

    Can Maryland even come back in? When they signed up with the B1G are they not subject to the GoR and exit penalties the B1G has?

    • Key question is whether Maryland has OFFICIALLY submitted paper work to leave the ACC. The legal case that Maryland is following includes the ACC should not be holding Maryland’s payments from TV contract etc because it has not withdrawn from the ACC…that happens just before July 1.
      So the question is, does Maryland want back in and does the ACC want them back….if they come back and add the Maryland\Washington DC markets will ESPN throw in another $500,000-$1,000,000 per team…if so there is some thinking to do…I say its worth thinking about…but remember, Uconn damaged its ability to win the vote to ACC because of its law suit back in ’03…have the Presidents and universities forgiven Maryland at this point?

    • dacuseman on said:

      Not sure if the B1G has an exit fee, but if they do, UM would probably be subject to it. I can’t imagine the GoR not being a requirement for entry. otherwise, what value do they have to the B1G and it’s network?

    • M. Caffrey on said:

      As mentioned above, it largely comes down to whether Maryland has actually signed an agreement with the B1G and if there is a way out.

      Depending on their agreement with the B1G it could be similar to TCU’s exit from the Big East (they were to pay the $5M Exit fee but didn’t have a waiting period…although I don’t think they’ve paid yet or have any intentions of paying).

      Alternatively, there could be something in the agreement similar to Boise St. and San Diego St.’s agreement with the Big East where they a date certain to actually join and there were other conditions that had to be met.

      Who knows…it’s a good question, though.

  8. Ah, the Midwest glitz and glamour. That’s how Indianapolis gets to host all those Super Bowls and Final Fours.

    And someday, the College Football Playoff.

  9. ChuckMI4 on said:

    If Maryland suddenly has cold feet about joining the B1G, I don’t think the ACC should do anything. All sentimental history aside–Louisville is a huge step up from Maryland. And 16 teams in football is WAY too many. If Maryland can’t join the B1G for some reason, my response would be “I am sure the new American Athletic Conference (or whatever its called) will be happy to have you!”

  10. M Mordenti on said:

    I am a Md alum from 1986 and can tell you from speaking with other Terp fans the majority of us are saddened and disgusted by Md leaving for the Big 10 and the way it was handled by President Loh and AD Anderson. If possible, I wish we would stay in thr ACC and would hope any offer for Md to stay would take into account the feeling that most alums have for keeping our traditions and proper geographical alingnment(the ACC) and not the highjacking of our University by the scumbags Loh and Anderson for a short term greedy money grab.

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