The next time somebody tries to tell you that the ACC is on the rebound, just point him or her to this header.
In related news, Tech fan haz a sad.
I mean, does anybody really want to get in the middle of a Paul Johnson-David Cutcliffe pissing match?
Wakey, wakey, football fans.
Let’s get the week rolling with a fully stocked buffet.
There’s usually something tempting you can find on the ol’ buffet.
If you’re wondering how FSU, which supposedly looked for a way out of the ACC for a while, signed on to that shiny new grant of media rights, remember that it always takes two to tango:
Since that time, Barron and FSU officials apparently have done just that, including exploring the possibility of joining the likes of Florida, Alabama and LSU in the SEC.
While it’s difficult to confirm how far those talks advanced, FSU officials came away with the understanding that the SEC saw little financial incentive to adding the Seminoles. Bringing on FSU would neither expand television markets nor open recruiting territories.
Just because you’re willing to go to bed with somebody doesn’t mean your partner will accept. At least not if he or she is sober. Or, if you prefer it stated in more commercial terms, you’re not offering enough to make it worth somebody’s while.
ACC is prepared to announce a grant of media rights agreement has been reached. That cuts off the financial incentive for another conference to chase a current ACC school.
In other words, if a school decides to leave the ACC for, oh, say, the Big Ten, then its media revenues go to the ACC – and not to the school – for the length of the Grant of Media Rights agreement. Translation: you’re not leaving the league.
Even worse for Delany? Note the number of schools that are parties to the agreement. Then consider that the ACC is officially a 14-team conference (for football, anyway). You do the math on what that means.
UPDATE: Official announcement here.
Coach K has had it up to here with this football crap. It’s time for the ACC to get back to its roots – from being a mediocre football conference that cares about the sport to being a mediocre football conference that cares about basketball.
For all these schools that have joined, it makes us the most powerful basketball conference, I think, ever. And I hope our league is able to understand the assets that we’ve accumulated and what it does to the assets we already have. I think if positioned properly, it sets us apart from anybody. And we shouldn’t look at where football is or whatever. We have the best assets as a result of Louisville, Syracuse, Pitt, Notre Dame, and the assets we have — we’re joining together. I mean, we better know how to make use of it. [Emphasis added.]
Now the interesting thing about this round of conference expansion is that in Duke and Louisville the ACC has two of the few programs that make more money on their basketball programs than they do on their football programs. So when Krzyzewski goes on to say this…
I think (it’s a matter of) how you use your assets, how we position them TV‑wise. Does our conference develop its own TV network? Where we play the tournament — when do we play the tournament? How do we position our regular season? How do we have the teams play schedules that are worthy of being considered for NCAA consideration? In other words, (we need) to take a real close look at our league with the new members and say: Why are we different, why are we better, and how can we be the top league?
And if we don’t do that, then we’re negligent, to be quite frank with you. We’d be negligent. We’d miss out on a great opportunity. These schools shouldn’t be coming in just because we want to do football. Our league was founded on basketball, and that doesn’t mean football isn’t important. It is important. I like it. I want it to be great. But I want ACC basketball to be the best. And we have a chance to do that again.
… it’s not crazy. It’s revealing. This is what a man who resents the direction the conference took when it expanded to twelve schools and split into divisions says. And even though I’ve never been a fan of the man, there’s a certain amount of fuzzy nostalgia in that I find appealing. But, then again, I’m not the AD at FSU, Miami or Virginia Tech. If I’m any of those folks, I’m not going to welcome the possibility of that mindset being embraced in the league office. (And if I’m Jack Swarbrick, I’m going to keep a careful eye on developments, that’s for sure.)
It’s hard to say how much effect Krzyzewski’s position will have, but it will be interesting to see what happens if Maryland is able to significantly reduce its exit penalty of $50 million. If it does, Coach K may be giving another roots speech sooner than he expects.
I can’t help but be more than a little fascinated by the dynamic playing out between the Big Ten, the ACC and Notre Dame. There’s little doubt that the Irish are the crown jewel of unaffiliated college programs. There’s even less doubt that Jim Delany would give his left nut to bring ND into his conference sphere because of what the school would contribute in value to the Big Ten Network.
But for whatever reason, Notre Dame isn’t biting. Instead, it’s casting its lot with the ACC. There’s already the scheduling alignment that’s been cooked up for football. And now comes news that Notre Dame will become a full-fledged member of the conference for basketball. That’s certainly a welcome development for the ACC’s short-term survival.
But if rumors are to be believed, none of that is slowing Delany down. Depending upon whom you hear from, the Big Ten has made overtures to several ACC schools to leave and join the Big Ten. Nobody’s biting yet, but the uncertainty over Maryland’s $50 million exit fee has been cited as a factor. Who knows what happens if that figure is reduced? Anyway, if Delany’s strategy is to break down the ACC so that Notre Dame has to find a new home again, things could get a mite messy.
And who’s to say that if Delany pulls in a few more Maryland-like programs whose departures topple the ACC, Notre Dame doesn’t go running into the arms of anybody but Delany? I’m sure there wouldn’t be a lack of suitors if that day came. That would be quite the Pyrrhic victory.