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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2007 12:04 pm 
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My guess is that the 16-team Big East will become a thing of the past within the next 5 years - either in 2010 or at the end of the current TV deal. However, the idea that 8 is worse than 10 or 12 is a mistake in my opinion. An $18.4 million BCS payout is $2.3 million for a member of an 8-team conference, but only $1.5 million for a member of a 12-team conference. Chances of getting to a BCS game are reduced by 50% when a conference goes from 8 to 12.


I've seen this statistic quoted before by other posters and I always shake my head with amusement when I see it. In an 8-team conference with no divisions and no championship game (and, of course, an auto-BCS bid), a team has a 1 in 8 chance of going to a BCS Bowl game. The BCS Bowl team must beat out the other 7 teams in their conference.

In a 12-team conference with two divisions and a championship game, a team has a 1 in 6 chance of going to a BCS Bowl game. The BCS Bowl team must beat out the other 5 teams in their division and the champion of the other conference.

Statistically speaking, a team has a better chance of getting to a BCS Bowl game in a 12-team conference with divisions and a championship game than they do in a 8-team conference.

Cheers,
Neil


Interesting take on this. Certainly the 12-team conferences with their divisions & unbalanced schedules create some interesting scenarios as we saw with Auburn this past year & Oklahoma a few years ago.

But you can't change the Math. It's still only 1 team out of 12 that gets the conference's automatic bid. The 12-team conference is more unpredictable & has the greater potential for upsets but it doesn't get any more teams into the BCS. :)


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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2007 2:37 pm 
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Penn State has 45,000 plus students & the Bryce-Jordan Center is not shabby. There's a lot of cow pastures around several Big Ten Schools. Maybe if Penn State was in the urban blight, then Big East partisans could have clinged to something, but that wasn't the point.


No school in the Big ten is in a location comparable to Penn State, much less several. It's not the cow pastures; it's the lack of anything else. State College is out in the middle of nowhere, hours away from civilization. It's remote for fans & inhospitable to the basketball players who grew up in that urban blight you disparage.

Fifty years of futility don't lie. During that time every other school in the Big Ten has been to the Final Four. Four other schools in the state of Pennsylvania have been to the Final four. Five other land grant/flagships in the Northeast have been to the Final Four.

During those same 50 years, Penn State has dominated Eastern football.

It's not an accident. There's a reason that Penn State has almost never had any significant success in basketball despite being the flagship university of a state which has seen 3 others of its colleges win national championships in the sport.


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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2007 2:43 pm 
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UCF would likely be a disastrous choice for #9 at this point in time, but that is a different thread. ;)

Cheers,
Neil


Neil, I once shared the same opinion, but was convinced otherwise. I'm genuinely interested in your thoughts on this.

At the same time, who do you like for #9? After all, #9 must eventually be added.

Thanks,
Bill


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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2007 2:44 pm 
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Penn State has 45,000 plus students & the Bryce-Jordan Center is not shabby. There's a lot of cow pastures around several Big Ten Schools. Maybe if Penn State was in the urban blight, then Big East partisans could have clinged to something, but that wasn't the point.


No school in the Big Ten is in a location comparable to Penn State, much less several. It's not the cow pastures; it's the lack of anything else. State College is out in the middle of nowhere, hours away from civilization. It's remote for fans & inhospitable to the basketball players who grew up in that urban blight you disparage.

Fifty years of futility don't lie. During that time every other school in the Big Ten has been to the Final Four. Four other schools in the state of Pennsylvania have been to the Final four. Five other land grant/flagships in the Northeast have been to the Final Four.

During those same 50 years, Penn State has dominated Eastern football.

It's not an accident. There's a reason that Penn State has almost never had any significant success in basketball despite being the flagship university of a state which has seen 3 others of its colleges win national championships in the sport.


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PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2007 6:46 am 
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I've seen this statistic quoted before by other posters and I always shake my head with amusement when I see it. In an 8-team conference with no divisions and no championship game (and, of course, an auto-BCS bid), a team has a 1 in 8 chance of going to a BCS Bowl game. The BCS Bowl team must beat out the other 7 teams in their conference.

In a 12-team conference with two divisions and a championship game, a team has a 1 in 6 chance of going to a BCS Bowl game. The BCS Bowl team must beat out the other 5 teams in their division and the champion of the other conference.

Statistically speaking, a team has a better chance of getting to a BCS Bowl game in a 12-team conference with divisions and a championship game than they do in a 8-team conference.

Cheers,
Neil


Interesting take on this. Certainly the 12-team conferences with their divisions & unbalanced schedules create some interesting scenarios as we saw with Auburn this past year & Oklahoma a few years ago.

But you can't change the Math. It's still only 1 team out of 12 that gets the conference's automatic bid. The 12-team conference is more unpredictable & has the greater potential for upsets but it doesn't get any more teams into the BCS. :)


Sorry, but it is math, although it is a 1 in 7 chance of getting the BCS bid (not 1 in 6 as I mistakenly said before, forgetting to add back in the other division's champion even though I mentioned it).

As you say, unbalanced scheduling can make for some interesting and unpredictable outcomes - such as the winner of one division finishing 5-3 in conference while the other division has three teams with 6-2 finishes. Technically, the one division winner finished fourth in this 12-team conference, but in essence, it doesn't matter. They beat out the other 5 teams in their division for the divisional championship and all that remains to be done is beat the other division's champion and they are BCS bound. The math is sound and it is the reality of the situation.

It only truly becomes a 1 out of 12 proposition if there is no championship game and only the regular season conference champion is the auto-BCS Bowl representative.

Now, there are other reasons not to go to 12, but this reason you cited is not one of them.

Cheers,
Neil


Last edited by omnicarrier on Mon May 21, 2007 7:41 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2007 6:52 am 
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UCF would likely be a disastrous choice for #9 at this point in time, but that is a different thread. ;)

Cheers,
Neil


Neil, I once shared the same opinion, but was convinced otherwise. I'm genuinely interested in your thoughts on this.

At the same time, who do you like for #9? After all, #9 must eventually be added.

Thanks,
Bill


My gut feeling, and it is only a feeling, is that the presence of UCF in the Big East at this point in time would stunt the growth of USF.

USF needs to develop to the point where it is at least semi-seriously mentioned with the other Big 3 in Florida before UCF is added to the league.

As for who I like for #9, none of the current crop of candidates impress me enough to want any of them. In terms of who is stepping up to the plate, I'd have to say UCF is making all of the right moves to take the lead in this regard.

I'm willing to wait to see what develops and I suspect so are the presidents of the Big East football schools.

Cheers,
Neil


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PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2007 7:13 am 
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Actually UConn is doing it in terms of football attendance as compared to BC. Even with little tradition & even less winning, UConn's attendance is very comparable to BC's. It's a no brainer that they will surpass BC. The UConn stadium was built to be expanded. BC has no thoughts of stadium expansion & frankly no room to do so.


But is a three-year run truly a gauge, especially when you keep in mind that in order to get season's ticket for the novel first season, fans were required to buy them for the first three seasons?

What happens if UConn continues to be mediocre and the novelty has worn off?


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Even if half the people in New Jerey don't see themselves as Jerseyites & would never give a sniff to the interests of the state univerity or its athletic teams, half of New Jersey is still substantilly larger than the entire population of Connecticut. And don't forget that southwestern Connecticut with about 1/4 of the state's population is very much like New Jersey with a population from somewhere else & with little loyalty to the state's university.

Because of its head start in basketball, Connecticut is a couple of steps ahead of Rutgers in terms of developing a loyal fan base. So, your point is well taken in that regard. But New Jersey has a population 2 1/2 the size of Connecticut & better high school football for recruiting. Those are enormous advantages.


Advantages that Rutgers has yet to fully utilize. Is it possible they ever will? Or is there something different about the mentality of New Jerseyites vs. Nutmeggers?

Again, I understand the point. Rutgers is truly the sleeping giant of the northeast, but the fact that they haven't managed to set the New Jersey world on fire in any sport, whereas UConn has in not just one sport, but two (and women's bb is a much harder sell than college football) gives them the edge to me.

Also, go back to the college football example of the first part of the 20th century. Which team was more successful in drawing fans - Princeton or Yale?

Despite the advantages New Jersey has over Connecticut, the residents of Connecticut have always responded better to college athletics in their state than have the residents of New Jersey.

Of course, neither state are in the Top 3 of the northeastern states you want to 'claim' to be regarded as the northeastern conference. Those 3 states remain New York, Pennsylvania, and Massachusetts.

Cheers,
Neil


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PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2007 7:37 am 
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Penn State has 45,000 plus students & the Bryce-Jordan Center is not shabby. There's a lot of cow pastures around several Big Ten Schools. Maybe if Penn State was in the urban blight, then Big East partisans could have clinged to something, but that wasn't the point.


No school in the Big ten is in a location comparable to Penn State, much less several. It's not the cow pastures; it's the lack of anything else. State College is out in the middle of nowhere, hours away from civilization. It's remote for fans & inhospitable to the basketball players who grew up in that urban blight you disparage.

Fifty years of futility don't lie. During that time every other school in the Big Ten has been to the Final Four. Four other schools in the state of Pennsylvania have been to the Final four. Five other land grant/flagships in the Northeast have been to the Final Four.

During those same 50 years, Penn State has dominated Eastern football.

It's not an accident. There's a reason that Penn State has almost never had any significant success in basketball despite being the flagship university of a state which has seen 3 others of its colleges win national championships in the sport.


As always, you make some excellent points.

But it's more than location, as you hint at. Basketball athetes in the recruiting area of Penn State have many more available options without having to sacrifice location.

I also think that, unlike in football, basketball athletes in the recruiting areas where Penn State could compete do not have an affinity for Big 10 basketball - which for the most part - is like how they play football - grind it out, slow paced, defense-oriented.

Which is why I think coaching could play a role in Penn State at least being competitive. And again, even in their 'down' years they have a large enough student body and enough local interest to consistently outdraw Temple, Rutgers, and BC.

If West Virginia and Virginia Tech can draw 10,000+ with winning teams, trust me, Penn State can (and has) as well.

Are they likely ever to be 'relevant'. Nah! There are too many good teams for that to happen. But they can stop being a joke. And that's something. ;)

Cheers,
Neil


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PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2007 9:31 am 
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Basketball is not always about location. My view is a blend of what Omni & SEC said, both whom made some formidable points. Rural schools in the Big 12, SEC, and MWC, for example, have had good runs at bb. While tradition is an attraction, coaching, good recruiting outside the area, and pure luck are elements. Attendance comes with success----unless some place like South Carolina where the fans will largely show anyway in lean years.

A lot of focus on Penn State, some of it despairingly, pointing to their mediocre bb history. As Panther's pasting of CDT editorials show, it is not just fb and/or bb. Penn State to the Big 10 was a fit, academically and other multiple features. To imply they are away from civilization, is bb schools/Notre Dame enablers only of Big East, sour grapes. There is I-80, an airport that accommodates to larger planes now, bus service, and Amtrak that reaches to the immediate east (Lewistown) and the west (Tyrone-Altoona) all, within 20 miles give or take. A new north-south interstate connector has been held up due to acid from mineral deposits running into water supply near Port Matilda, on the outskirts of State College. State College is within a 4 to 5 hour drive of Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, NYC, and Baltimore-Washington. The state capital, Harrisburg, is less than a two hour drive. The campus is a college town, but also has some appreciable high tech industry and the home of AccuWeather. It is not dog patch. The county has one of the Commonwealth's best high schools and comparatively strong socio-economic status among the citizenry. Michigan State and Purdue have cows too.

Auburn, Alabama; Starkeville, MS; Ames, Iowa; Clemson, SC; Blackburg, VA; College Station, TX; Stillwater, OK; etc., may have certain virtues not being in urban environments. To imply location, for all, can doom a school if it is non-urban is nonsense.

Louisville has had both fb and bb success, not always both at the same time. Some schools do well in both, but few sustain themselves in both at the highest level for long periods. Not everyone is today's Florida and the runner-up, Ohio State.




Last edited by louisvillecard01 on Mon May 21, 2007 9:34 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2007 11:33 am 
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Interesting take on this. Certainly the 12-team conferences with their divisions & unbalanced schedules create some interesting scenarios as we saw with Auburn this past year & Oklahoma a few years ago.

But you can't change the Math. It's still only 1 team out of 12 that gets the conference's automatic bid. The 12-team conference is more unpredictable & has the greater potential for upsets but it doesn't get any more teams into the BCS. :)


Sorry, but it is math, although it is a 1 in 7 chance of getting the BCS bid (not 1 in 6 as I mistakenly said before, forgetting to add back in the other division's champion even though I mentioned it).

As you say, unbalanced scheduling can make for some interesting and unpredictable outcomes - such as the winner of one division finishing 5-3 in conference while the other division has three teams with 6-2 finishes. Technically, the one division winner finished fourth in this 12-team conference, but in essence, it doesn't matter. They beat out the other 5 teams in their division for the divisional championship and all that remains to be done is beat the other division's champion and they are BCS bound. The math is sound and it is the reality of the situation.

It only truly becomes a 1 out of 12 proposition if there is no championship game and only the regular season conference champion is the auto-BCS Bowl representative.

Now, there are other reasons not to go to 12, but this reason you cited is not one of them.

Cheers,
Neil


Neil, we could wind up debating this until it is a dead horse, so I won't offere any further comments after this post. You have an interesting take on this & there is a certain truth to what you say.

But you can't get away from the fact that 12 teams are sharing one automatic bid. Regardless of the other nuances, one team gets the bid & 11 don't.

To make another comparison: Some have suggested that theBig East share its automatic bid with the Mountain West. Big East fans were up in arms in response to this idea because they realized that it would cut their chances in half. Even though their champion would only have to add one more game & therefore get by only one more opponent, if the each conference champion won the playoff game half the time, the Big East champ would get the auromatic bid only half as often as they do now.

My last 2 cents . . .

Cheers :)


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PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2007 11:37 am 
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Neil, I once shared the same opinion, but was convinced otherwise. I'm genuinely interested in your thoughts on this.

At the same time, who do you like for #9? After all, #9 must eventually be added.

Thanks,
Bill


My gut feeling, and it is only a feeling, is that the presence of UCF in the Big East at this point in time would stunt the growth of USF.

USF needs to develop to the point where it is at least semi-seriously mentioned with the other Big 3 in Florida before UCF is added to the league.

As for who I like for #9, none of the current crop of candidates impress me enough to want any of them. In terms of who is stepping up to the plate, I'd have to say UCF is making all of the right moves to take the lead in this regard.

I'm willing to wait to see what develops and I suspect so are the presidents of the Big East football schools.

Cheers,
Neil


Thanks for the comments, Neil. :)

I agree on both your points. USF could use the time to develop. They know this & are strongly opposed to the addition of UCF. I also agree that there is no pont in adding anybody until & unless their program has developed to the point that it will add value to the conference. Until that time it is just another mouth to feed, reducing everybody's revenue.

Bill


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PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2007 11:40 am 
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No school in the Big ten is in a location comparable to Penn State, much less several. It's not the cow pastures; it's the lack of anything else. State College is out in the middle of nowhere, hours away from civilization. It's remote for fans & inhospitable to the basketball players who grew up in that urban blight you disparage.

Fifty years of futility don't lie. During that time every other school in the Big Ten has been to the Final Four. Four other schools in the state of Pennsylvania have been to the Final four. Five other land grant/flagships in the Northeast have been to the Final Four.

During those same 50 years, Penn State has dominated Eastern football.

It's not an accident. There's a reason that Penn State has almost never had any significant success in basketball despite being the flagship university of a state which has seen 3 others of its colleges win national championships in the sport.


As always, you make some excellent points.

But it's more than location, as you hint at. Basketball athetes in the recruiting area of Penn State have many more available options without having to sacrifice location.

I also think that, unlike in football, basketball athletes in the recruiting areas where Penn State could compete do not have an affinity for Big 10 basketball - which for the most part - is like how they play football - grind it out, slow paced, defense-oriented.

Which is why I think coaching could play a role in Penn State at least being competitive. And again, even in their 'down' years they have a large enough student body and enough local interest to consistently outdraw Temple, Rutgers, and BC.

If West Virginia and Virginia Tech can draw 10,000+ with winning teams, trust me, Penn State can (and has) as well.

Are they likely ever to be 'relevant'. Nah! There are too many good teams for that to happen. But they can stop being a joke. And that's something. ;)

Cheers,
Neil


If you put it that way, I agree.


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PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2007 2:55 pm 
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Interesting post, SEC03. :) Just a couple of comments.


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The east is shared by the Big East and the ACC? Oh please, exactly what conference is the east's most prominent? Penn State -- Big Ten & none of this nonsense about cow pastures in central PA.


Penn State is the East's most prominent football school - & is completely irrelevant in basketball. It is one of the best examples that football success can't buy success in both sports.

Cheers


I fear that we have drifted off the initial point in this discussion of our varying analyses of why Penn State basketball has been bad to mediocre for so long, so I though I'd re-quote the exchange between SEC03 & me that kicked off this discssion.

I originally expressed my opinion about why Penn State basketball is what it is, but there really is no denying that it is not a significant factor on the national sports seen or even on the East Coast except among PSU alums.

So much of the discussion about conference realignment revolves around football - and for good reason - but when considering how conferences market themselves throughout the academic year, I find it hard to accept the view that the Big Ten is the East's most prominent conference when that prominence is limited to 3 months in the fall - & that only when Penn State football is having a good year, something which has become less reliable in recent years than it once was.


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PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2007 5:01 pm 
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Penn State, while bordering Ohio, is the school that most needs that 12th conference school, and eastward, if not Notre Dame. Where's that decade old consulting group proposal that suggested Rutgers....?

A season-ending annual fb match with Notre Dame-Penn State would be an attraction.

The Penn State-Pitt matchups got very less frequent due to conference affiliations and other related matters. Unlike some other inter-conference rivalires (FSU-UF; GT-GA; SC-Clemson; ISU-Iowa, etc.), the political and fan demands were not intense or convenient enough to force regularity of play.

It's kind of getting back to the original question: Did the ACC pick the wrong schools?

Penn State went into the B10 without previously playing one of their opponents each & every year (in fb). Boston College went to the ACC knowing they were doing so without a bordering state or nearby rival. It's a matter of weighing the merits against the scheduling drawbacks.

Those schools that are in/near the physical/geographic center of a conference design (i.e. Alabama, North Carolina, Indiana, Kansas, California, Memphis, etc.) may have certain comforts; but some schools on the far edges, of which some have to be, have used these situations at times to their advantage in terms of recruiting. Washington State, bringing in schools such as USC & UCLA to their campus, then appearing in LA, doesn't hurt.

Sometimes history can be bizarre or options get quiet limited. LA Tech?


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PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2007 5:57 am 
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As Panther's pasting of CDT editorials show, it is not just fb and/or bb. Penn State to the Big 10 was a fit, academically and other multiple features.


Great point, Louiville Card 01. :)

I completely agree that Penn State fits in the Big Ten like a hand in a glove. I think that PSU's move to the BT was inevitable as long as the conference was receptive to it. Once Bryce Jordan arrived on the scene in state College, it was pretty much a done deal & was just a matter of working out the details. It's precisely because they fit so well in terms of size, research, academics, etc. - as you point out - that the Big Ten would inevitably be their home. And for this same reason they were never going to be the saviour for Eastern football despite their Eastern football traditions & histories with other Easter football schools.

I believe that your comment gets to the heart of the matter. Schools are best off when they seek affiliations with other universities that are most like them as institutions first & athletics second. Athletic programs can be developed but the character & nature of the institution is what it is. The Big Ten is a perfect example of this. The old Southwest Conference is a perfect example of why the opposite doesn't work & why that conference would inevitably break up. Conferences based on state flagships have been able to function well with one or two independents like USC & Stanford in the Pac Ten, but not when the conference has been split half & half as it was in the Southwest Conference.

This is precisely why I proposed in this thread that the ACC had chosen the wrong schools. They were looking for a quick fix to turn themselves into a power football conference & at the same time extend their geography to dominate the East. They saw the football pedigree at Miami as the answer to the football issue - not only an established football power at the top of the conference but an insurance policy to protect against any bad times at Florida State.

The flaw in the decision IMO is that Miami gave them a third private school member. No other power conference has 3 privates except the Big East. I believe that they compounded the problem by looking to BC & Syracuse as the schools to extend their geography. This set them up to have 7 state schools & 5 privates, a situation approaching the Southwest Conference formula for disaster.

At the time the ACC was looking to expand, they had 7 state schools & 2 privates. The schools in the Big East that are most like them in institutional chaaracter & mission were Virginia Tech, Rutgers, & UConn - & possibly Pitt. IMO West Virginia was a borderline candidate because it is from such a small state & because its academics & overall mission are different than the other ACC state schools.

Instead of looking at Miami as the answer to football prestige, I believe that they would have been better to look at Virginia Tech right from the beginning. VA Tech was a notch below Miami in football, but they were good enough to strengthen the ACC's football profile. Besides, there were never any guarantees that when viewed in 2003 that the next 20 years of Miami football would look like the previous 20 years with their multiple national championships. Who would have stood in South Bend in 1988 with its back drop of multiple national championships over the previous 20 years & said that Notre Dame would win no NCs over the next 20 years? But that's exactly what has happened & they have set a record for most consecutive bowl losses. The ACC should consider themselves fortunate that VA Tech was forced upon them. Besides football, they were a perfect fit in every other way & provided a great rival for UVA.

When looking to extend their sphere of influence north, the ACC looked to BC & Syracuse, 2 more privates. Good insitutional fit with the rest of the conference? I think not. Maybe a fit with Duke & Wake, but not with the 7 state schools. Rutgers & UConn were the best candidates to expand up the coast into the East's major media markets, which the ACC has instead left for the Big East to rebuild around. UConn was already an established basketball power house with a national championship under their belt & Rutgers has since proven my point that schools can grow thei athletic departments faster than their insitutional character. Academically these two were a perfect fit. Both are Public Ivy type institutions, which fit in well with the academic prestige of Virginia & North Carolina. They were also the only two Big East schools that fielded teams in every sport that the conference sponsored & would therefore bring depth to the entire athletic picture of the ACC. Finally, Rutgers is close enough to Maryland to reduce the isolation that the Terps have always experienced in the ACC. BC, 200 miles farther to the northeast, did little to asddress these needs in College Park.

Adding 3 state universites would truly have made the ACC the Pac Ten of the East Coast. Opportunity missed.



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