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If you plan on playing only two out-of-conference games per year, playing any FCS opponents would seriously devalue the strength of your conference and your schedule. It would be harder to make the playoffs.
1 year, 10 months ago on Big Ten Throws Down The Gauntlet: No More FCS Opponents
Not sure why you think the Big 12 would venture into Kentucky and Pennsylvania (with Louisville and Pitt) before North Carolina and Virginia (with NC State and Va Tech), but in the end, it's not really important to your general point.
1 year, 10 months ago on How An SEC-Big XII Scheduling Alliance Could Doom The ACC
@Hkjbr @NCarolina09 I think UNLV-vs-Nevada is more comparable to UCLA-vs-Cal in terms of where they stand in the state's system. Good point on SDSU, though.
1 year, 11 months ago on Big Bang Theories: The Countdown To Super-Conferences (Part 4)
@Hkjbr Regarding Pac-12 expansion, I've been trying to figure out which West Coast schools fit the Pac-12 profile. All Pac-12 schools are national universities, ranked 139 or higher, and with a peer rating of at least 2.9 out of 5.0. Of possible additions, only one Western school fits that profile: BYU. If you extend into Texas, SMU and Rice also fit. Making small concessions, you could argue for Hawaii and San Diego State, maybe New Mexico and Boise State (pretty good reputation in the West, but not a national university).
Over the past few years, Colorado and Washington State have the lowest Sagarin ratings in Pac-12 football. Using them as floors for football considerations, Boise State, BYU, Houston, Nevada, Hawaii, and San Diego State fit the mold. Making small concessions, you could throw in SMU and Rice. I think we can rule San Diego State, though, as not being compelling enough to duplicate markets.
With these considerations in mind, BYU seems to be the most obvious target for the Pac-12 if they can work around the t.v. issues. No other school in the West fits the profile nearly as well.
I'm not a Pac-12 fan, but if they expanded to 16 and couldn't raid the Big-12, I'd like to see BYU, UNLV, New Mexico, and Boise State or one of the Texas schools.
@JRsec @UNC23 I think offers to UNC, UVa, Duke and either Va Tech or NC State would indeed be compelling. Heck, if the SEC would take both of the latter plus Wake Forest, all six would probably come in a heartbeat. I don't think the SEC wants to move past 16, though. I think they want 16--more money and easier scheduling at the very least--but I don't think they would feel compelled to move past 16.
@UNC23 It would definitely be a downgrade in terms of academics, but I think it would be an acceptable downgrade: after all, we're playing them in football, not calculus. The reputation-by-association only goes so far if there is a compelling reason to take an SEC offer.
I'm of the opinion that UNC only leaves the ACC if it will break apart, and it only goes to the Big Ten if it goes with multiple ACC partners--essentially keeping some semblance of the ACC in tact.
@UNC23 If I were Slive, and if it could be done, I would do everything in my power to snag UNC and UVa now. It adds the two big Southern markets its missing, it adds academic prowess, and it effectively halts expansion at 16: the Big Ten would have no appealing way to work into the South. They would probably settle at 16 unless a big name like Notre Dame or Texas came calling.
@UNC23 Travel is a concern, I imagine, but local culture is not. The State of N.C. wouldn't be changing conferences--the University would be. The University has more peers in the Big Ten than the SEC.
The argument for the SEC is football, baseball, and travel/weather. But College Station is no closer to Chapel Hill than Minneapolis, so travel arguments only go so far. And SEC football is better than Big Ten football, but the Big Ten is no slouch. And what the Big Ten lacks in baseball it makes up in soccer, lacrosse, and other sports. Not to mention, the money and academic prestige.
I think UNC and UVa or Duke in the SEC at 16 teams is more appealing than the Big Ten with 16 teams, but when you start talking about the Big Ten adding 4 or more ACC schools, well, it seems like not much would change from moving to the Big Ten other than making more money.
Probably something like UNC, UVa, and Duke, with three of FSU, Clemson, Va Tech, and Ga Tech, one of Miami and NC State, plus enough of the rest of the current ACC to have at least 12 teams.
Clemson will not leave a viable ACC unless it gets and SEC invite. You can mark that down. And FSU had been in talks with the Big 12 last year, but it won't leave without a Southern partner. And it doesn't look like they'll have a partner unless the ACC breaks apart first.
Regardless, ND joined the ACC because it wanted partners for its non-football sports. What's FSU and Clemson go to do with that?
I could see the B1G taking 0, 2, or 4 in the near future. But it won't be Notre Dame unless it's 6--and that will be because of Notre Dame, not the Big Ten.
Notre Dame has had every chance to join the Big Ten as a full member and declined to do so. Notre Dame is not interested in joining a conference in football unless conference champions get an automatic bid in the playoffs, which won't happen unless we go to 4 conferences and/or an 8-team playoff.
If UNC/UVa/Duke/Ga Tech go to the Big Ten, and the SEC adds only Va Tech/NC State, I don't know if FSU and Clemson would stay free agents long enough (Big 12) to hope the SEC finally changes their mind on them.
If the Pac-12 wants to expand and can't get Texas, Texas Tech, Oklahoma, and Oklahoma State, would they target the Nevada and New Mexico markets, where they currently don't have schools?
According to Matt Hayes's sources, the SEC has been trying to get UNC and Duke for years now. But the SEC doesn't fit the academic profile, and until recently, UNC and Duke had no reason to believe the ACC wouldn't survive. Heck, after the Pitt and Syracuse additions, I was pretty darn sure that the ACC would snatch Penn State and Rutgers next. But when Penn State got immersed in their scandal, we went halves on Notre Dame, alienating some of our full members and prompting the Big Ten to react.
If you ask most UNC fans, I believe they would say that they don't want the core of the ACC to split up. That means UNC, Duke, and UVa--and to a lesser extent, Ga Tech, Clemson, NC State, Florida State, and Va Tech. I would imagine that any conference that offers more money and the opportunity to keep several schools together will be heard out.
If the ACC doesn't stick together, poor Wake Forest.
No, if any of UNC, UVa, or Duke leave, it's game over for the ACC. If one leaves, the others go, too--maybe not to the same conferece, but they go.
UVa has turned into a bit of a wild card, in my opinion. First, President Sullivan can from Michigan and is familiar with any value the Big Ten would add. If going to the Big Ten is really that much more profitable, President Sullivan won't be disounting it against tradition as much as others might. Second, UVa increasingly identifies with Washington, DC. Losing the Maryland rivalry hurts UVa more than any other team in the ACC.
I think that's why there is so much UVa and Ga Tech talk, despite UVa being one-third of the glue holding the ACC together.
One option is to have four divisions, but two divisions would be upset they didn't get a chance to play for the conference championship. Would a conference add a semifinal game? Probably not (though it might be cool for fans).
As for pods, with 18 teams, you would have to go to a 9 game schedule. Two pods of 4 and two pods of 5. For example:
Pod A: UNC, UVa, Duke, Ga Tech, Maryland
Pod B: Michigan, Ohio State, Penn State, Rutgers
Pod C: Michigan State, Indiana, Purdue, Illinois, Northwestern
Pod D: Wisconsin, Nebraska, Iowa, Minnesota
In odd years, divisions would be A/B and C/D. In even years, divisions would be A/C and B/D. Every team would have 8 divisional games per year. The 9th game would rotate through the Pod that is never in your division.
Sample schedule (Michigan):
Year 1: Pod B + Pod A + Wisconsin
Year 2: Pod B + Pod C + Nebraska
Year 3: Pod B + Pod A + Iowa
Year 4: Pod B + Pod C + Minnesota
Some teams play each every year. Some teams play each once every 2 years. Some teams play each once every 4-5 years.
The idea that a conference would have to take NC State to get UNC or Virginia Tech to get UVa because of local politics is way overblown. The states just want their schools to have nice homes. Obviously, the Big East was not very cozy for Va Tech once Miami and Boston College were leaving--hence the pressure from the state on UVa. Neither of the states of N.C. or Va. would hurt their flagship schools by blocking a revenue-generating move, especially if a move to the Big Ten means that Va Tech and NC State will land in the SEC. Now, if UNC and UVa went to the SEC, that may be a different question--maybe--depending on how good the ACC or Big XII looks. NC State is certainly not going to the Big Ten, and Va Tech probably wouldn't either.
NC State just has no value outside of N.C. If you have UNC and Duke, you don't have to worry about N.C. households for football--plus you can leverage the national appeal of the basketball teams.
Wasn't the Big Ten Missouri's first choice? Tough to say now.
I do think Delany would like to move to 20 teams. I suspect his goal is 4 now (UNC, UVa, Duke, Georgia Tech) before the current contract ends, then wait for Notre Dame plus one more (Missouri? Kansas? Pitt?).
UVa, UNC, and Duke are very tied together. If they feel like they will be forced to move eventually, I wouldn't be surprised if they decide to move together. With Georgia Tech, a move to the Big Ten would keep them with 5 long-time ACC members (including Maryland), plus two more Mid-Atlantic teams (Penn State and Rutgers), plus a lot of good football (Ohio State, Michigan, Michigan State, Wisconsin, Nebraska). And of course, the Big Ten would be the best academic FBS conference with many powerful research institutions.
Also, don't underestimate the considerations of non-revenue sports like lacrosse. I believe UNC, UVa, Duke, Maryland, Penn State, and Rutgers field almost a full slate of sports. It won't drive expansion, but it could be a tiebreaker of sorts if UNC and Duke eventually have to decide between the SEC and the Big Ten.