Call Me Maybe: Maryland and Rutgers Talking to the Big Ten

Posted: November 17, 2012 in Big East, Big Ten, College Basketball, College Football, Sports
Tags: , , ,

What started off as a few rumors on random local radio shows earlier this week has turned into full-blown national news: the Big Ten is speaking with Maryland and Rutgers and could be expanding as soon as next week.

As Dan Wetzel pointed on in his column on the latest news, this isn’t a no-brainer move for the Big Ten on the level of adding Nebraska (or schools such as Notre Dame or Texas).  However, I believe that it ultimately makes sense overall (especially the addition of Maryland).  The timing of the move is a bit curious just as I was surprised by the timing of the SEC adding Texas A&M (and subsequently Missouri) last year, but the additions of Maryland and Rutgers fit what Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany stated was one of the long-term objectives of the conference’s original expansion exploration announced three years ago: making sure that the Big Ten keeps up with the changing demographics of the United States for next several decades. There is only going to be so much growth in the Big Ten’s base of the Midwest (although the “decline” of the region is often overstated by many non-Midwesterners that often just think of the classic Rust Belt images in Michigan and Ohio while ignoring the fact that the Chicago, Minneapolis and Indianapolis areas have more diverse economies and are growing well population-wise), so that can affect the long-term attractiveness of the conference’s members in recruiting all types of students, whether athletes or valedictorians.

To be sure, it also doesn’t hurt to have a massive amount of potential television revenue tacked on from the Big Ten Network getting onto basic cable in the Washington/Baltimore and New York City media markets.  This is certainly where Maryland clearly adds financial value to the conference: there is no doubt in my mind that the Terrapins have enough pull to get the BTN into homes in their home state plus DC (and probably Northern Virginia on top of that).  While I agree with Wetzel that Washington is a pro sports town, it’s more of a place like Chicago (another pro sports city) where, with the addition of Maryland, there will be enough of a critical mass of Big Ten grads for the conference to claim that market for TV purposes.  Plus, while there has been so much focus on football in conference realignment because that’s what the national TV networks such as ESPN and Fox are throwing out massive contracts for, basketball is actually fairly important to the BTN specifically in terms of leverage against cable operators for basic carriage.  As a result, Maryland’s strong basketball program and fan base are key factors here despite some struggles on football field for the past few years.

The risk for the Big Ten is more with the addition of Rutgers.  Obviously, there’s enormous potential value in having a large public institution that plays directly in the New York City metro area.  That market has been the Holy Grail for several difference conferences, but that’s because it has been so tough to crack.  In sheer numbers, the NYC area has a large number of Big Ten grads along with legions of Rutgers alums, but percentage-wise, there is nowhere near the market penetration that Illinois and Northwestern plus the other Big Ten schools provide for the Chicago market or USC and UCLA plus the other Pac-12 schools provide for the Los Angeles market.  As a result, I tend to agree more with Wetzel’s line of thinking with respect to Rutgers more than Maryland.

What the Big Ten is banking on is that the combination of Rutgers, Penn State, Maryland and Michigan (along with bringing in marquee schools such as Ohio State and Nebraska into town) is going to drive interest for the casual sports fan in New York and New Jersey.  Jim Delany and the powers that be in the Big Ten must have finally gotten comfortable with the belief that this combo is going to work or else they wouldn’t be pulling the trigger on the move.  This is a conference that doesn’t take chances with its membership ranks because it doesn’t need to.

As a pure football move, Maryland and Rutgers won’t move the meter like Nebraska, but I’d say that from a market value perspective, this is a better expansion than the ACC with Syracuse and Pitt (the non-football addition of Notre Dame is a different comparison) and the Pac-12 with Utah and Colorado.  The SEC got the best combo of on-the-field football value and off-the-field market with Texas A&M (while Missouri, which has a good market itself, got the benefit of being school #14 for a league that needed another school that wouldn’t take away revenue).

Some other thoughts:

  • There have been few non-ACC people that have argued about the strength of the ACC off-the-field more than I have over the past couple of years, so that’s why I was very hesitant to jump full-bore on Maryland to the Big Ten rumors that started earlier this week.  This was a move that myself and many other conference realignment aficionados had long thought was possible and looked good on paper, but questioned how willing Maryland was going to be in leaving a stable conference that it founded.
  • The $50 million exit fee that the ACC instituted back in September when Notre Dame joined as a non-football member is certainly a deterrent for Maryland to leave, but we have learned in conference realignment that no one has ever turned down a conference upgrade because of an exit fee.  These types of exit penalties inevitably get negotiated down to lower figures.  At the same time, it’s doubtful that Maryland (whose athletic department is about as solvent as Greece) will have to pay that exit fee out-of-pocket.  The Big Ten might front some of that money and deduct an amount from Maryland’s conference earnings for several years.  (This is what the Big 12 is doing with West Virginia.)  So, $50 million might sound like a lot, but the reality is (1) that number will likely end up being much lower and (2) someone other than Maryland itself is probably going to be paying a lot of that in the beginning.
  • What I didn’t ever buy was the popular fan-based thought that Maryland wouldn’t join the Big Ten because it was a “basketball school”.  Please take a look at the top 5 of both the AP and coaches polls this week for evidence about how asinine of a position that is when looking at conference decisions.  At the same time, unless you’re a legit basketball blue blood (Duke, UNC, Kentucky, Indiana, Kansas and UCLA), the best way to have a top tier basketball program in the modern era is to have a massive amount of football revenue to pay for it.  Florida, Ohio State and Texas have shown the way on this front over the past several years and the trend is only going to increase further with the latest moves in conference realignment.  To paraphrase what Jim Calhoun stated a couple of years ago, the best decision for your school’s athletic department is whatever is the best decision is for your school’s football program.
  • Speaking of Jim Calhoun, the athletic department that he largely brought to prominence at UConn will likely end up being the largest beneficiary out of the Big Ten’s expansion outside of Maryland and Rutgers themselves.  UConn is unequivocally next in line to get an invite into the ACC, so if Maryland really does end up leaving one spot open there, it’s there for the taking by the Huskies.  The only way that UConn doesn’t end up in the ACC at this point is if the Big Ten pulls an even greater surprise and takes two ACC schools, in which case I could see that conference staying at 12 all-sports members.
  • On the flip side, Louisville is probably the school most damaged by this Big Ten expansion.  When looking purely at the Cardinals athletic department, there is no doubt that it belongs in a power conference.  However, the academic requirements of the Big Ten and ACC have always meant that they would never seriously consider Louisville, while the SEC has never had much incentive to add that school since it already has that state covered by the University of Kentucky.  Louisville essentially has to hope that the Big 12 is going to get skittish with this latest move by the Big Ten and that they can’t stand pat at 10 members.  From a personal standpoint, I believe that Louisville deserves better because that athletic department has truly done everything right over the past few years.

All in all, Maryland and Rutgers going to the Big Ten is a solid off-the-field move for the conference in the long-term even if it won’t be sexy on-the-field (outside of lacrosse) in the short-term.  For the rest of the college sports world, conference realignment chaos is back in effect.

(Follow Frank the Tank’s Slant on Twitter @frankthetank111 and Facebook)

(Image from WBAL)

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  1. greg says:

    This rumored expansion sucks. Iowa football sucks. Glad that basketball is here.

  2. zeek says:

    Frank, the rumor of Fox buying Yes has been running around as being tied to this.

    Could that be true with respect to Rutgers anyways? It seems like a no brainer that Fox would have better leverage throughout New Jersey if Fox is running Yes.

  3. M says:

    Strangely enough, this move is perhaps most justifiable on academic grounds. Maryland is a huge research school especially if you count the Baltimore County campus with over $750 million, and Rutgers is no slouch either.

    As far as their football impact, I’ll let Teddy Greenstein’s source tell it: “To say Rutgers gives you New York is like saying that Notre Dame gives you Denver”.

    • Brian says:


      I’ve seen it said that the CIC is a major factor in MD’s interest in the B10, FWIW.

      The best thing we can say about RU football is it will let some good B10 teams play near NYC in good weather. At least the B10 alums may turn out to watch, and the local sports coverage has to increase when RU is playing MI or PSU rather than UC or USF.

  4. bamatab says:

    Roll Tide Roll!!! We’re back in the race!!!

    • Brian says:

      And America cried a little.

      I remember when you used to be able to root for upsets because there weren’t all these negative consequences. It just changed who went to the major bowls a little. Now you have to check the implications of every game before choosing a rooting interest.

      As of now, I’m a huge fan of OSU, ND, Auburn, GT, UGA in the CCG, FSU, Clemson, Arkansas and MO. How sad is that? There used to be a time I could just root for my team and for ND to lose.

  5. Eric says:

    Do not like this at all, but it looks pretty likely at this point. I hope these are divisions (posted in other thread):

    Division A
    Ohio State
    Michigan State

    Division B
    Penn State

    This set-up gets the 3 eastern schools together, the 4 western schools, the Indiana/Illinois schools, and the Ohio/Michigan schools. We do lose the Little Brown Jug as annual, but every other major rivalry is preserved (with Wisconsin-Iowa returning). It still splits the “big 4.” It doesn’t split the “big 6″ that were used before, but honestly Michigan State has probably moved beyond Iowa in wins since 93 anyway. Division B is stronger in the middle, but I think getting rid of crossovers to maximize play vs. the other division is a bigger benefit than is a drawback.

    • Eric says:

      That said, my guess is that they simply plug Maryland into the WIWH (Why is Wisconsin Here division)/Leaders and put Rutgers in the Legends/WIW (Where is Wisconsin).

      • Brian says:

        No, they’ll keep them with PSU. That’s part of the reason to expand to the east.

        • Eric says:

          That’s certainly possible too, but I’m very much hoping against the two teams in the same division in any scenario that requires locked crossovers to continue. If that happens, we’ll have nonconference games that are more regular than some of the Big Ten games in the other division.

    • M says:

      Conference wins since 93

      Ohio State 123*
      Michigan 109
      Penn State 101*
      Wisconsin 96
      Iowa 81
      Michigan State 79
      Purdue 71
      Northwestern 69
      Illinois 51
      Minnesota 50
      Indiana 36

    • You are way over-complicating this. The obvious move is to add Rutgers and Maryland to the Big Ten East and move Illinois to the Big Ten West. Rutgers/Maryland would get Illinois/Northwestern as their permanent cross-over opponent.

      • zeek says:

        Yep. Or you could jiggle it around a bit and go with:

        Michigan State-Rutgers

        That would keep rivalries for the 4 Illinois/Indiana based schools while allowing Michigan State/Iowa access to the East Coast for recruiting.

        • I think a strong case can be made for Maryland and Northwestern as permanent cross-over partners based on the color clash of their uniforms. The photo at the top of this post makes me envy the ~8% of men who are color-blind!

        • Brian says:

          I’d go with:


          I’d really like to switch off MSU/IN but the B10 seems intent on keeping it.

    • @Eric, your Division A is exceptionally fan-friendly (in terms of traveling to road games) while Division B sucks for fans. No thanks!

      • StevenD says:

        Division B is “fan friendly” for PSU because it gets two nearby road games (compared to zero now). It is also “fan friendly” for Iowa, Minnesota and Wisconsin because it restores their traditional grouping and creates a very comfortable neighborhood for Nebraska).

        • Eric says:

          That was my thought process. Rather than thinking about two divisions, I was more thinking of 4 groupings. You have the 3 east coast schools, the 4 Indiana/Illinois schools, the 3 Ohio/Michigan schools, and the 4 western teams. You can’t put the Ohio/Michigan schools with the western ones as that would be exceedingly unbalanced divisions, so the Ohio/Michigan with the Indiana/Illinois schools made most sense to me.

          • Brian says:


            For that plan to work, you have to go ahead and rotate the pods every 2 years. I’d also redo your central pods to be MI/MSU/NW and OSU/PU/IN/IL

    • frug says:

      How about just straight East-West? The conference won’t do it because everyone wants to be in a division with either Ohio St or Michigan, but with PSU being hit with the Zombie Penalty, they wouldn’t be a problem from a competitive balance point…

      • Brian says:


        “How about just straight East-West?”

        No. But out of curiosity, what do you define as the E/W split? The old split was the IL/IN border with the whole state of MI in the east. Who goes west – PU, IN, MSU, other?

        “The conference won’t do it because everyone wants to be in a division with either Ohio St or Michigan,”

        That, too.

        “but with PSU being hit with the Zombie Penalty, they wouldn’t be a problem from a competitive balance point…”

        In order of descending conference W% since 1993:
        OSU, NE, MI, PSU, WI, IA, MSU, PU, NW, MD, IL, MN, RU, IN

        The East is bifurcated while the West is mostly middle.

      • @frug: “With PSU being hit with the Zombie Penalty, they wouldn’t be a problem from a competitive balance point.”

        You understand that our Zombie Penalty with eventually end, right?

        • bullet says:

          While its likely, there’s no guarantee the impact ever ends. It certainly will be a problem for about 10 years.

          • frug says:

            Yep. And since its not clear that the Big 10 will stay at 14 teams that long they could just redraw the divisions again if/when they move to 16.

    • Brian says:


      You know the B10 won’t pair OSU and MI, so why waste your time? The ADs and presidents showed zero interest in keeping them together before. I doubt much has changed since then.

      “It doesn’t split the “big 6″ that were used before, but honestly Michigan State has probably moved beyond Iowa in wins since 93 anyway.”

      Nope. IA still has a 2.5 game lead right now.

      “Division B is stronger in the middle, but I think getting rid of crossovers to maximize play vs. the other division is a bigger benefit than is a drawback.”

      The B10 would lock rivals even with those divisions because they want at least 4 guaranteed king/king games each year.

      That’s one reason why it seems more likely they would shift IL to the West and put the 2 newbies in the East with PSU.

      • Eric says:

        They’ll probably keep OSU/Michigan separate, but they know from the outset this time that Ohio State/Michigan’s game date isn’t moving. They also know that keeping locked crossovers means few games against the other division. There were presidents last time who put an emphasis on “playing each other more.” I’m hoping that sentiment is greater than the sentiment to separate the two. The other thing more in that favor this time is that Penn State won’t feel as on an island if they aren’t with Ohio State.

        • Brian says:


          They are going to keep locked rivals no matter what, so separating OSU and MI has no impact on how often teams will play each other. The fixes for that are a 9th game and/or pod scheduling. Besides, that complaint about playing each other more was from WI and IA wanting to play their rivalry more often.

          I think PSU would have been just as happy getting MI and MSU as with getting OSU and WI.

  6. ron says:

    If Big Ten expansion were a play, up to now the title would be “Waiting for Notre Dame”. We may be past that phase following Notre Dame’s recently announced agreement with the ACC.

  7. Nathan says:

    I said it when the ACC poached Pitt and ‘cuse: it was purely a defensive measure. I think the ACC has known that there are a couple of programs that could be had for the right deal (be it UMD to the Big10 or FlaSt to SEC/Big 12) and didn’t want to be caught scrambling for a team in order to keep a CCG and the value of their contract.

  8. Alan from Baton Rouge says:

    GEAUX LSU Fightin’ Tigers!

    B1G fans be careful what you wish for. B1G takes Maryland, ACC takes UConn, Florida State and VA Tech call Mike Slive.

    • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

      forgot to add

    • greg says:

      “B1G fans be careful what you wish for.”

      I don’t think this was the outcome B1G fans were wishing for.

      • Richard says:

        I don’t see this as a final step. If UMD, UVa, UNC, and Duke end up in the B10, it wouldn’t be a bad outcome even if VTech & NCSU go to the SEC.

    • Richard says:

      The problem with that scenario is that if the SEC had wanted FSU, they’d already be in the SEC instead of Mizzou. The B12 is still more likely for FSU (and Clemson).

      As for VTech to the SEC, Delany & company might not mind. They’re not AAU anyway, and VTech to the SEC would make UVa (and thus also UNC & Duke) ripe for the taking by the B10.

      If the B10 & SEC split the tidewater states between them (VTech & NCSU to the SEC, UNC, UVa, Duke, and UMD to the B10), the SEC would end up with the more popular program in VA but the B10 would end up with the more popular program in NC (the bigger state) as well as MD.

      In the end, both conferences would win.

      • bamatab says:

        The way that SEC & B1G have “positioned” themselves in the new playoff/major bowl bids, it makes you wonder how closely Slive & Delany are working together. If this B1G move ends up weakening the ACC enough to open up the NC/VA markets, both conferences would greatly benefit in the expansion race also.

        As Frank has said in the past, I think Slive’s & Delany’s interests are closely aligned, and aren’t at odds near as much as most people think.

        • zeek says:

          It would be humorous if this all ended up with the Big Ten taking UNC and UVa with the SEC taking Va Tech and NC State.

          Then those four schools would play end of year rivalries like the current ACC-SEC football rivalries.

          • Richard says:

            Well, UNC currently ends with Duke. UVa-VTech at the end of the season is relatively recent (they only started doing so in 1990).

    • frug says:

      B1G fans be careful what you wish for. B1G takes Maryland, ACC takes UConn, Florida State and VA Tech call Mike Slive

      Maybe that’s what the Big Ten wants. If V-Tech and FSU jump, the Big would have their pick of ACC schools (including ND). Of course, various interests seem to be blocking FSU to the SEC and after what happened in 2003 V-Tech can’t leave without Virginia’s blessing.

      • bamatab says:

        I still don’t buy the theory that since the VA politicians forced UVA to get VT into the ACC a decade ago, that VT is handcuffed to UVA today. Now NCST being handcuffed to UNC is a different story since they share some of the same BORs.

        • frug says:

          I don’t understand what is so hard to believe. If V-Tech could get the state politicians to force UVa to hold the ACC’s entire expansion plan hostage, then why couldn’t UVa just go to the same politicians to force V-Tech to stay put.

          After what happened V-Tech owes the Cavs a life debt.

          • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

            frug – VA Tech owes UVA nothing. The Hokies owe former governor and current US Senator Mark Warner a life debt.

          • frug says:

            Well seeing as Virginia’s current governor is an alum of soon to be ACC member ND, I’m sure he wouldn’t have any problems honoring Warner’s debt…

          • bamatab says:

            Because those politicians are no longer in office. Plus VT/Big East’s position was a lot more dire back then than UVA/ACC’s would be this time. Plus UVA will almost certainly have a spot in the B1G or SEC if VT jumps to either league, so I don’t think the state’s current politicians will be under the same pressure to keep either school in the ACC, espcially if the school will increase its revenue stream.

          • frug says:

            Plus VT/Big East’s position was a lot more dire back then than UVA/ACC’s would be this time.

            I don’t know. If just Maryland leaves, then yeah the ACC could probably soldier on, but I doubt Maryland’s departure would enough to make the Hokies move.

            They may be a new member, but they really are happy there. They have historic rivalries with Virginia, BC and Miami (and for that matter Pitt and Syracuse), and UVA, UNC, NC State, Duke, and Wake Forrest are all closer than any SEC school (and Clemson and Pitt are closer than any schools but Tennessee and USCe). Add in the fact that Virginia Tech had been pining for ACC membership for decades and I have a really hard time believing they would leave just because Maryland jumped ship.

          • bamatab says:

            @frug – I’m not saying they definitely will move, just that they could if they wanted to. With that said though, expansion come down to long term revenue growth. And by looking at the recent playoff/bowl bid negotiations and the tv contracts, it is safe to say that the SEC & B1G will far exceed the ACC in revenue over the long haul. These aren’t 10 year decisions, they are 100 year decisions.

          • frug says:

            With that said though, expansion come down to long term revenue growth. And by looking at the recent playoff/bowl bid negotiations and the tv contracts, it is safe to say that the SEC & B1G will far exceed the ACC in revenue over the long haul. These aren’t 10 year decisions, they are 100 year decisions.

            Both teams and conferences (and that includes the Big Ten, SEC and several ACC teams) have turned down bigger money in favor of the status quo before so that alone isn’t going to push anyone to do anything they aren’t comfortable with.

            I’m not saying they definitely will move, just that they could if they wanted to

            I still don’t think so. If V-Tech bolted FSU and Clemson would both look to the SEC and Big XII for interest and the ACC would end up as a nothing football conference.

            And while Virginia would be more likely to land in a major conference than V-Tech would have been in 2003, there is no guarantee they would. Virginia wouldn’t give the SEC anything they wouldn’t get with V-Tech and the Big 10 as plenty of non-UVA options that would be appealing.

            I just can’t envision ACC alum Bob McDonell letting V-Tech leave without the Cavs blessing.

          • Richard says:

            “I just can’t envision ACC alum Bob McDonell letting V-Tech leave without the Cavs blessing.”

            In my scenario, however, everybody gives everybody else their blessing as the ACC disintegrates (UNC & UVa to the B10; VTech & NCSU to the SEC).

        • ccrider55 says:

          Wouldn’t UVA to the B1G while VT to the SEC make the politicians claim total victory, as long as they play each other often?

          • frug says:

            I’m not saying that the schools can’t be split; I’m saying they have veto power over each other so long as the ACC remains viable.

            And to be honest, I don’t think either school wants to leave. They would if they didn’t have a choice, but I don’t think we have reached that point yet.

          • bamatab says:

            No doubt

          • Richard says:

            Yep, we’re definitely not that their point yet.

            Next move is up to FSU (as usual) and the B12. If the ‘Noles go, the ACC will unravel.

    • Wes Haggard says:

      Could be more likely that the SEC adds a North Carolina and Virginia school to add both states to the forthcoming SEC Network. FSU would not add another states cable population.

      • frug says:

        ND wouldn’t add anymore TV markets but the Big Ten would take the Irish over any other school besides Texas if they had the choice. FSU is a “brand” and they can increase viewership both within the current footprint as well as nationally enough to justify the lack of new TV sets.

        That said, conference politics still might keep them out.

    • Brian says:

      Alan from Baton Rouge,

      “B1G fans be careful what you wish for. B1G takes Maryland, ACC takes UConn, Florida State and VA Tech call Mike Slive.”

      I’m not wishing for it. That said, let’s finish your point:

      The SEC takes VT and FSU. Clemson and NCSU run for the B12 while the B10 gets UNC and UVA. The remaining ACC schools bring in the full BE members to round out a new ACC.

      While I don’t want the SEC to get FSU and VT, I know the B10 wouldn’t take FSU and probably not VT either (maybe in a package with UVA) so I can’t worry about them too much.

      • FranktheAg says:

        Maybe Brian. Or Texas, Oklahoma, OSU and Tech could move to the Pac16. That move is still not dead. Not even close actually.

        Those schools would prefer it vs. having a “fly-over” conference.

    • @Alan: “…Florida State calls Mike Slive.”

      And Mike Slive says, “I think you meant to call Bob Bowlsby.”

  9. Carl says:

    PSU looking up

  10. Elvis says:

    Frank haven’t you been saying the ACC is stronger than everyone says?

    I told you….the lack of revenue in the ACC will cause it to break up. This is step one.

    • frug says:

      Yeah, I’ve always thought that Frank was too optimistic about the ACC’s future. He was trumpeting the ‘Cuse, Pitt and ND additions as signs of strength, when really they were the exact opposite. Syracuse and Pitt added add very little, and the decision to add ND as a partial member (less than a year after pledging they never would) was an admission that the TV renegotiation failed to meet expectations. Plus, the ND deal also “irked” the brass at Maryland who resented the ACC reversing its 50 year+ policy of no partial membership according to the Washington Post).

      I was never as apocalyptic as some about the ACC’s future, but I always said that unless the ACC signed a GOR I would never consider it truly stable in the long term.

      • Michael in Raleigh says:

        It irks me as an FSU fan. In its dominance, the Seminoles carried this league throughout the 90′s. They’ve had two national titles as ACC members, which is 40% of the titles won by ACC members, including Maryland’s from almost 60 years ago. I get it that the Irish can play by different rules as an independent, but as a member of the ACC why should they be allowed their own NBC contract while FSU doesn’t even get third tier rights?

        Locally, and this is the mindset that drives fans of non-North Carolina ACC members crazy, the addition if Notre Dame as a quasi-member for football was met with nothing but rave reviews. People were a-okay with changing the rules if it kinda-sorta led to getting ND. There just wasn’t enough skepticism.

        • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

          One of the rumors is that the preferential treatment for ND was one of the proverbial straws that broke the camel’s back with TPTB at UMD.

      • bullet says:

        I don’t think he’s wrong about the ACC’s strength, just about MD and FSU’s alliegiance, and possibly Clemson.

        Its still going to take a huge amount of $ to crack the other 11.

        • frug says:

          How do you define strength if not by the ability to defend yourself from attack?

          And I think you are overestimating the the allegiance of some of the others. BC, Pitt and Syracuse would jump to the Big Ten now if they had the option (they have absolutely no reason to stay) and Miami and Georgia Tech are content, but if they were sufficiently scared that FSU was going to abandon them, they would jump.

          The Virginia and North Carolina schools are the only ones that wouldn’t make a preemptive move. (Actually, Wake Forest would leave immediately for the the SEC or Big 10 if they got an invite but that wouldn’t happen)

          • bullet says:

            I’m not so sure BC or SU would go except as a defensive measure. SU’s AD made some comments a few years back about not wanting to be in the Big 10 (resource issue-private school with 14k students vs. public schools with 35-55k). If all the $ were equal, Pitt and Maryland are the only schools in the ACC I could see leaving for the Big 10. I don’t think any would leave for the SEC or Big 12 if $ were equal. Miami, GT and FSU have had that choice in the past and declined the SEC.

  11. geary_maize says:

    One significant thing is the high school talent in New Jersey and Maryland. Those two states are equal with Michigan and Illinois, and only slightly behind Pennsylvania in terms of football talent(Ohio is #1).

    Basketball wise… Wouldn’t those two schools bring in the most basketball talent rich areas in the entire nation?

  12. Michael in Raleigh says:

    Can’t wait to hear what the local reaction is here. Will it be “The sky is falling?” Or will it be anger at Swofford.

    I definitely don’t want to hear a downplaying of how devastating a loss this would be. Maryland was a founding member, and they’re likely leaving. It’s one thing for Florida State or an ex-Big East member to have wandering eyes, but losing an original member of a league that’s in its 60th year is pretty sad.

    For the Big Ten fan, I’m not sure how much this is going to benefit you. With an 8-game schedule, it’ll be like the SEC, where all but one non-division opponent comes to town once every 12 years. But at least there, the Ole Miss or Alabama fan so getting Texas A&M annually while giving up many, many years against Florida & South Carolina & Georgia. Fans in Illinois or Iowa will see far, far fewer games against Michigan or Ohio State (or, if they realign things, Wisconsin or Nebraska)… and in their places will be Rutgers and Maryland.

    I’m personally very upset about this. I’m the rare Florida State fan who prefers and appreciates the league FSU is in, but wow. Losing a member is something that just does not happen with long-lasting power conferences. The Big East’s losses were very different. That collection of ex-independents had been together for 12 years when its defections first occurred in 2003, and in the last 18 months, it has devolved into a mid-major football league. The Big 12′s losses were also with a relatively new collection of teams, where the Big Eight ties & sense of commonality had been badly damaged. With the ACC, where the only loss of a member happened several decades ago (just as the Big Ten’s only loss, Chicago, happened long, long ago), it is terrible to think a member would leave, especially a charter member.

    I just hope the ACC takes a look in the mirror and asks where it went wrong and what to do to keep this from ever happening again ( which, unfortunately, might be a problem it faces again in the relatively near future). Don’t point fingers at Maryland or the Big Ten or anyone outside the league, including the media. Figure out what the league, in terms of leadership and of membership action, did to make this happen. This is not to be taken lightly. No ho-hums and, “We’ll just get UConn and never look back,” as though that solved any deeper issue.

    • Elvis says:

      Too late….the ACC road the Swofford train and it is about to blow up in their face. Stevie Wonder saw this coming with his revenue issues and making every wrong football move.

      • Michael in Raleigh says:

        Not every move was wrong. Va. Tech was a terrific addition, and while they haven’t won many BCS bowls, they at least made it go them. Miami also made perfect sense. They were officially signed on in the summer of 2003, just months after Miami appeared in the NCG. (Miami was about 3 games short of having won three straight seasons’ worth if games. They were about as good an addition as anyone could have had at the tjm

  13. John O says:

    I wonder if Maryland and Rutgers will be encouraged (required?) to elevate their respective club level ice hockey teams to D1 status as part of the deal.

    • frug says:

      Doubt it. Maryland’s AD is a financial black hole and hockey has high overhead. Plus, how can Maryland really justify promoting hockey right after dismantling a half dozen other sports?

    • zeek says:

      Not for twenty years if that. Both of them need to get their athletics department stable in terms of funding with respect to the deficits that both have been running.

      After that you can discussion that kind of thing.

      • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

        This. There is almost no way in hell that either school afford to add a hockey team right now. Not only because of the direct costs but also because of the Title 9 consequences.

        • “There is almost no way in hell that either school afford to add a hockey team right now. Not only because of the direct costs but also because of the Title 9 consequences.”

          Buffalo Sabres owner Terry Pegula solved the Title 9 problem at Penn State by funding a distaff program in addition to Men’s Hockey.

    • I expect Maryland and Rutgers will need to add hockey as a price of admission. 5 years +/-. As with most programs, they’ll each need to find a hockey loving sugar daddy to build a facility and once up & running, hockey is a revenue sport.

    • Could be part of a Under Amour push into Hockey gear if that guy was to sugar daddy a Maryland Hockey program

    • @John O: “I wonder if Maryland and Rutgers will be encouraged (required?) to elevate their respective club level ice hockey teams to D1 status as part of the deal.”

      No, we have enough teams (six) for Big Ten Hockey.

      What would be nice is to add two varsity men’s lacrosse programs to get to six. We’ll presumably soon have Maryland, Ohio State, Penn State, and Rutgers.

      • Adam says:

        Michigan is already varsity and is playing this upcoming season in the ECAC. We have a decent 2013 schedule, including OOC at Johns Hopkins, Army, and Colgate at Citi Field. We won’t be great, but hopefully we’ll grow in the next 5 years.

        MSU previously had a program, maybe they could add one. Northwestern seems like a school that is ripe for one as well. I would definitely like to see hockey and lacrosse on BTN more often.

  14. Jake says:

    So, FSU/Clemson to the Big 12 is back on?

    • ccrider55 says:

      Has the B12 suddenly become more attractive than it was last year? Other than a desperation life raft, I doubt it.

      • zeek says:

        Now that the financial details are out on the Big 12 versus ACC and Sugar/Rose versus Orange Bowls, you could say yes.

      • Brian says:


        “Has the B12 suddenly become more attractive than it was last year?”

        In comparison to the ACC? Yes. The B12 doesn’t have to be any better if the ACC is stepping back, and losing a founder is definitely a negative. Is it enough more attractive now? I have no idea. But if the SEC can pry VT and NCSU loose while the B10 nabs UVA and UNC, then yes.

      • wmtiger says:

        Actually yes it has, especially relative to the ACC.

    • Jericho says:

      Not really sure what would change. Maryland is not exactly a big domino. everyone seems to think it is. But if the ACC replaced Maryland with UConn, would it really matter? They both stink at football, UConn is better at basketball, and they both bring ok sized markets.

  15. Andy says:

    I doubt the ACC gets raided again, but if they do then the SEC wants the Universit of North Carolina first and foremost. They would likely take whatever companion UNC needed, be it NC State, UVA, Duke, or whoever. But the only way that happens is if the ACC is greatly weakened and UNC is desperate. Short of that I doubt the SEC will expand.

    I’m interested to see if the Big 12 will expand.

    Most obvious targets are Lousville, BYU, Florida State, Clemson, Miami, Georgia Tech, and Virginia Tech.

    Louisville and BYU seem the most realistic.

    • frug says:

      UNC is the number one ACC target of both the SEC and Big Ten (at least as long as the AAU requirement remains in effect). It would be interesting to see what would happen there since the conferences have never really battled each other in expansion.

      The SEC would have the advantage of be willing to add NC State (something the UNC BOR might require) but the Big 10 would probably make more financial sense for a BB school and the folks in the Ivory Tower (and it is a quite dominant at UNC) would definitely be more comfortable with Big 10 academics (plus Duke would unquestionably prefer the Big 10 FWIW).

    • Richard says:

      I don’t believe the SEC would be willing to add another NC school just to get UNC. Think of it this way: Slive could get in to 2 states by adding NCSU & VTech, or he could get in to just one state by adding NCSU & UNC.

      Slive would probably be willing to add UVa & UNC, but I’m pretty sure that the B10 would as well, and I’m pretty confident the B10 would win that battle. VTech + NCSU isn’t really much of a worse combo (if at all) for the SEC.

      • Wes Haggard says:

        NorthCarolina as a state tunes into SEC games now, not B1G. UNC southern roots would most probably prevail in favor of the SEC. Virginia could be a toss up, but if UNC opted for theSEC, UVA most likely would too. Birds of a feather. Be interesting to see which schools Sliver has already been in contact with.

        • Brian says:

          Wes Haggard,

          Oddly enough, GT may be the most northern ACC school south of MD (maybe Duke and Miami). Atlanta is so full of transplants and so many of GT’s students are out of state that it doesn’t feel all that southern.

        • Brian #2 says:

          This is what I’ve said for months on this board, but the Big Ten fans tune it out.

          The UNC fanbase is absolutely, positively Southern, and will be significantly in favor of joining the SEC over a Midwest conference such as the Big Ten. That feeling absolutely matters when trying to drum up grassroots approval for a university-altering move like changing conferences.

  16. Craig Z says:

    Buckeyes 11-0.

  17. Richard says:

    Eric, I figured that I’d respond to your post here, as this is the new thread:

    “I can’t stand the fact this is likely happening as it’s going to make the Big Ten feel like 2 separate conferences (that we could really be playing Rutgers and/or Maryland every year and Iowa and Michigan State twice in 12 years seems absurd).”

    This is why I think the BigTen should become the BigTwenty (if the ACC disintegrates and ND finally casts its lot with the Big20, which would by then have significant presence in the South & East as well as the Midwest). Under my pods for the Big20, the 10 original B10 schools would still play each other at least half the time (while UNL would play its western B10 neighbors half the time and PSU would play it’s eastern B10 neighbors half the time.

    The pods would be thus:

    Pod A: Wisconsin, Iowa, Illinois, Northwestern, Minny
    Pod B: Michigan, OSU, MSU, IU, PU
    Pod C: PSU, ND, Miami, Rutgers, GTech
    Pod D: UNL, UMD, UVa, UNC, Duke

    Pods A+B & C+D would form round-robin divisions half the time and A+D & B+C would form round-robin divisions half the time.

    Almost all traditional B10 rivalries would be preserved. PSU gets to play a lot on the East Coast as it’s always wanted (as does ND, in both the East Coast and South). UNL would visit the tidewater states more than the western half of the B10, but those states have more fertile recruiting grounds, so I don’t think UNL would mind. All current BigTen schools would visit fertile recruiting areas outside the traditional B10 footprint more than they do now. Demographics-wise, all of the new schools (besides ND) would be from big growing states. None of the schools would play rivals that they care about less than half the time (which could be the case with a 14-school conference with no pods & even is true now when it comes to Wisconsin&Iowa or Illinois&Iowa).

    • Andy says:

      A 20 school Big Ten? That’s pretty crazy.

    • frug says:

      Yeah, those pods don’t work at all. UNL would be really upset being dumped with the East schools and everyone in Pod A would be mad about not being in the same Pod as one of the glamor schools.

      • Richard says:

        Don’t know why you’re so sure that UNL would be upset. It’s not has if UNL has a rich history and deep rivalries with the other western schools in the B10. I’m fairly confident that the lure of richer recruiting grounds (which the Huskers desperately need) would be able to sway them.

        As for Pod A and glamour schools, that’s true, but that also means that they get the benefit of always being in the weaker division (easier path to the title game). Plus, they get a lot of big rivalries. For all the schools there, at least half the games in their pod are rivalry games.

      • Brian says:


        Agreed, his pods don’t work. Granted, I think the whole 20 team B10 is silly, but at least he could fix the pods.

        • Richard says:

          Well, the biggest objection to my pods is that they vary in competitiveness, which I concede. However, I was trying to maximize the continuation of natural rivalries and meet schools’ objectives as I think chasing competitive balance is fool’s gold (as the sanctions that reduced PSU to a smoking crater show).

          • Brian says:

            I think NE and PSU might object to all the travel they get in comparison to OSU and MI. when those 2 pods are together it’s be ridiculous.

          • Richard says:

            Ridiculous awesome!

            Seriously, though, as strength of schedule will be taken in to account, just as even a 2-loss SEC champ almost certainly will make a 4 team playoff, a 2-loss winner of a division composed of pods B & C almost certainly would as well.

            Travel is a concern, though it could be sold to UNL as an opportunity to visit more fertile recruiting grounds. PSU post-Paterno also wants to recruit more nationally, and they have a lot of alums down the East Coast (particularly FL) as well. In any case, these pods are just for football; for other sports, it makes sense to localize the scheduling.

    • Why GaTech instead of The ‘Cuse if the ACC implodes?

      • Richard says:

        1. GTech is AAU; ‘Cuse dropped out because they weren’t doing enough research.
        2. More population growth in GA than upstate NY.
        3. Much better football recruiting in Greater Atlanta than upstate NY as well.

      • zeek says:

        Penn State/Rutgers is the farthest Northeast that the Big Ten goes in my opinion.

        BC, Syracuse, UConn, Pitt; none of those four can add anything that we get from Penn State + Rutgers in that region.

    • @Richard, isn’t there potential political fallout on Tobacco Road if Carolina and Duke leave N.C. State and Wake Forest in limbo?

      • frug says:

        Wake isn’t a problem, but NC State has veto power over UNC so long as the ACC remains viable.

      • Richard says:

        Well, I foresee the SEC taking VTech & NCSU (and the B12 taking at least FSU & Clemson; maaaaybe Pitt & ‘Cuse, but that’s doubtful). Wake is a tiny private school. They probably have as much political pull in NC as Rice does in TX.

    • Eric says:

      As much as I dislike the idea of large leagues, it’s probably better than the 14 team version we are going to be left with.

      • Richard says:

        Thanks, Eric. That’s why I thought of the Big20 in the first place: a 14 or 16 school B10 would actually force the original 10 B10 schools to play each other less than a Big20.

    • Andy says:

      Those numbers are completely bogus.

      • Andy, do you have something concrete to show that those numbers are incorrect or are you just crying in your beer because Missouri isn’t falsely being propped up? Either add something to the discussion or just be quite.

    • @Patrick – Good work there, Patrick.

      • Nemo says:


        I’m a Maryland alum in Annapolis. The local Verizon network carries the BTN already although I’ve largely bypassed it. Needless to say, I watched the OSU game yesterday for the first time on the BTN. FiOS has wired the entire State. The financial figures in the article by Patrick seem realistic especially for a University that has loved its hoops. My best friend is a wrestling fanatic, and he got the BTN on his network specifically for wrestling. Finally, hockey is making a comeback here in high schools. Some kids from schools like DeMatha in Hyattsville end up going to schools like BC. Maybe not for long, however….


  18. Great Lake State says:

    Expansion for expansion sake. Thanks Delany. Thanks for selling out the B1G before you and your DB Cooper approved, golden parachute take the leap.

    • zeek says:

      Sometimes you have to roll the dice.

      The Pac-12 took Utah and Colorado.

      The ACC took Pitt and Syracuse.

      Maryland + Rutgers is better than either of those. Does that make it likely to be a fan favorite, no, but sometimes you have to do these things.

      • zeek says:

        Also, when you think about the positive impact that comes out of how big the Big Ten’s alumni bases are in D.C. and NYC; it makes it a much easier move to accept.

        It’s a positive from the perspective of finally creating a cluster of schools with Penn State as the Northeast anchor.

        • Great Lake State says:

          It just reeks of a rebound move after getting jilted by ND. I’m assuming Fox is in the driver’s seat on this, which makes it even worse. The tail is now officially wagging the dog.

          • zeek says:

            I don’t see it that way.

            Delany had a 30-50 year plan on the table. It was ND + 1 in a move to 14.

            That got taken off the table permanently with ND deciding to go to the ACC and shut down its Michigan rivalry.

            This is an obvious alternative move to 14 that currently exists and is available.

          • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

            Agreed with zeek. This reads more like checking off an unavailable option and then moving to the next item on the list. Delaney & Co aren’t going to overreact and suddenly go after UMD just because ND moved on. The numbers have been run long ago.

  19. Nick says:

    Of you really think UConn’s medicore academics is enough to top Louisville as a potential Maryland replacement?

    ‘Ville has advantage over UConn in football power, market size, athletic department success, expanding footprint and is at worst a wash in hoops.

    I just don’t see how Storrs, CT and That athletic department is a No-brainer pick over Louisville for the ACC. I love to see more proof because the difference between the two schools academically in small.

    • Brian says:


      “Of you really think UConn’s medicore academics is enough to top Louisville as a potential Maryland replacement?”

      “I just don’t see how Storrs, CT and That athletic department is a No-brainer pick over Louisville for the ACC. I love to see more proof because the difference between the two schools academically in small.”

      Small? From your link, UConn is around #200 in the world while UL is more like #450. USN&WR puts UConn at #63 and UL at #160. That’s a huge difference, especially to the academicians in the ACC (ARWU #28, 29, 30, 39, 54-67 x2, 68-85 x3, 86-109 x2, 110-137 x 2, 138-150 x1).

  20. mushroomgod says:

    Guys, this isn’t going to happen. There is already tremendous pushback from the MD fans/alums, and that’s going to carry the day, just like when ND was a “done deal” back when…..I feel soory for the Rutgers fans…..without MD I don’t see the BIG going to 14……………

    • mushroomgod says:

      I will add………if this turns out like I think it will….it’s one more example of expansion advocates underestimating the importance of cultural fit….in this instance, MD’s long-time rivalries and standing in the ACC

      • ccrider55 says:

        You may be right, but it isn’t fun to speculate about the status quo…

      • Brian says:


        “in this instance, MD’s long-time rivalries and standing in the ACC”

        Even MD fans will tell you they have no real rival in the ACC (they hate Duke, but it’s a one sided thing), especially in FB, and the conference is run by tobacco road. What rivalries and standing are you talking about?

        PSU would instantly give them a bigger FB rival than they’ve got in the ACC.

    • frug says:

      When was ND a “done deal”. The closest they got to reaching a deal in the last ten years was ND’s president submitting a proposal from the Big 10 to the ND BOR without recommendation.

    • Richard says:

      The funny thing is, you were advocating Rutgers and Maryland for the longest time.

      Anyway, unlike knee-jerk messageboard fans, the powers-that-be at UMD will have to consider the long-term future, and a conference that is dependent on FSU not fleeing to the B12 just isn’t that stable (yes, this is similar to Texas and the B12, but the dwarves there got Texas to agree to a GOR, because ultimately, Texas wanted to lord over its own little playpen; I don’t see FSU agreeing to a GOR with the ACC any time in my lifetime)..

      • mushroomgod says:

        I still advocate MD and Rutgers as the best move for the BIG. I see MD, in particular, as a tremendous addition if it happens.

        What I always doubted was that the MD fans/alums would feel the same way. That’s why I thought MO and Rutgers was the more realistic option.

        I see the BIG as boxed in long-term with no great options if (when) this falls through. As a strategic matter, it might have made more sense to float this idea past the MD fans/alums first. This way it looks like powers that be are trying to ram it down their throats—as in the ND situation.

    • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

      I’m not seeing ‘tremendous pushback’ at all from alums in my circle. The blog comments are divided but whereas most of the negative posts are “this idea is turrible!” the positive ones actually take the time to weigh the pros & cons. The Scout board is not at all indicative of the alums’ mood.

      • Brian says:

        Yep. I’ve seen mixed reactions, too. And that’s without any real info out there explaining the financial and academic benefits.

        • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

          Also Rutgers fans are disturbingly positive about the whole thing. As in “we are finally getting our due” positive. :/

          • Brian says:

            I was amused to read how this was all a recognition of how great their AD was and everyone was scared the BE would get such a good TV deal that teams wouldn’t want to leave any more.

            Weird stats:
            The MD SBNation blog post about this has over 1100 comments
            The RU SBNation blog post about this has 20

          • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

            They’d be winning the B1G this year and will probably be 8-4 or better every year in the future.
            I think Mistress Reality is going be especially tough on them.

          • Brian says:

            Yeah, but let them dream. It’s more fun disabusing a fan base of their preconceived notions of how they’ll crush B10 teams (se PSU and NE for previous examples) on the field.

          • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

            Ahh the unbridled sociopathy that is the PSU fan base. Some gifts never stop producing.

            FWIW most of the Rutgers discussion is on message boards. Speaking of which ECU fans are convinced this all heralds their magic carpet finally arriving to whisk them into the BEast.

          • zeek says:

            Rutgers’ rivals board seems to be their biggest place of congregation unless they have a board out there that I haven’t seen yet.

      • mushroomgod says:

        Anybody got a linl to the most active MD site? I believe it’s other than a rivals/scout site.

    • Brian says:


      “Guys, this isn’t going to happen. There is already tremendous pushback from the MD fans/alums,”

      A bunch of internet whining isn’t tremendous pushback. What really matters is what the powerful donors want, and they aren’t on blogs talking about it.

      Besides, I’ve seen a fairly sizable minority in support of the move. Nobody should judge fan reaction until all the information is out there, at least. Most of them have no idea what the financial difference would be, how it would help academically, etc. The biggest complaint I’ve seen is not playing Duke and UNC in hoops as much, and that isn’t going to stop the move.

      • mushroomgod says:

        There’s some peril in bringing in a school into a league where the majority of the fans/alums don’t want to be. PSU anyone? (not PSU in the beginning, but PSU at present)

        The $ issue with MD is interesting. If this is mostly about $ from the MD popint of view, I don’t see how the BIG gets away with the NEB plan of paying the new guy $10M less for a few years….MD wants and needs $ now, not 5 years from now. And IF MD comes in with better terms than NEB and rutgers, how will that sit with NEB and Rutgers? Can of worms…..

        • zeek says:

          You mention Penn State.

          But have you seen the posts on Penn State’s forums about this? Many are already complaining that this will dilute their ability to play traditional Big Ten schools like Michigan, Wisconsin, Michigan State. “How are we going to fill 100k seats playing Maryland?”

          These posts are from the same people who were posting until just recently that they wanted to play Syracuse, Pitt, Maryland, Rutgers, BC, and their “traditional rivals” in the Northeast areas before these rumors came to light.

          Fans on message boards are allowed to be hypocritical. The job of the administration is to make sure that they get a 100 year decision right “in the moment” based on what they know about the current set of variables.

          • mushroomgod says:

            I have seen those posts, and it’s very surprising. I would think PSU fans would be all over this plan like stink on s***.

            I’ve been a PSU backer of sorts, but there really is a terrible atmosphere to their board now….the Sandusky fallout seems to have sent some over the edge…..

        • Brian says:


          “There’s some peril in bringing in a school into a league where the majority of the fans/alums don’t want to be. PSU anyone? (not PSU in the beginning, but PSU at present)”

          1. This isn’t like trying to force ND in or even like adding PSU. There are obvious major benefits to MD, and they’re used to being in a conference.

          2. There’s no proof the majority of MD fans are against this. Message boards are NOT representative of the entire fan base.

          “The $ issue with MD is interesting. If this is mostly about $ from the MD popint of view, I don’t see how the BIG gets away with the NEB plan of paying the new guy $10M less for a few years….MD wants and needs $ now, not 5 years from now.”

          NE accepted that plan so they could buy into the BTN more quickly. They should be getting full payments by the time the new TV deal starts or there abouts. MD will also get a similar deal, but unlike NE they’ll get a raise over what the ACC paid before having to use the rest to pay exit fees (the B10 may front them some of the money to be paid back from their share) and start buying BTN equity. They’ll find numbers that work for both sides. I think NE chose a minimum payout to get it over with as soon as possible while MD might pay just a touch more slowly.

          ” And IF MD comes in with better terms than NEB and rutgers, how will that sit with NEB and Rutgers? Can of worms…..”

          Better terms? No. They might be on a different schedule for buying their BTN equity stake, though. That’s not the same thing.

    • Eric says:

      I really hope you are right.

    • Nemo says:

      I’ll take that bet, Mushroom… ;-o)

  21. Richard Cain (@Rich_Cain) says:

    Next step: Duke, UNC, VaTech, UVa, GaTech, Fla State. Two 10-team divisions. In for a penny, in for a pound.

    • “Next step: Duke, UNC, VaTech, UVa, GaTech, Fla State.”

      What about N.C. State, Wake Forest, and Syracuse?

      • Richard says:

        NCSU will end up in the SEC. No one cares about Wake (trust me, if the B10 disintegrated, no one would pick up Northwestern either). Sadly for ‘Cuse (and Pitt), they may have to beg back in to the BE if the B12 doesn’t pick them up.

    • Richard says:

      Yep, that’s what I said (well, I had Rutgers & Miami because I don’t think VTech & FSU’s academics would be considered up to snuff by the B10).

  22. Alan from Baton Rouge says:

    Brad Edwards is projecting tomorrow’s BCS top 5 as follows:

    1. Notre Dame
    2. Alabama
    3. Georgia
    4. Florida
    5. K-State

    • Brian says:

      How dare you talk football on here!

      It’s such a load of crap that those SEC teams are all so high.

      AL is 1-1 against ranked teams.
      GA is too, but with a blowout loss.
      UF is 2-1, none on the road
      LSU is 2-2, all in a row
      TAMU is 1-2
      SC is 1-2

      Why is it that an OR loss to a top 15 team is so much worse than AL’s? Why can’t FSU get any respect? Who has the SEC beaten OOC to deserve all these high rankings? It’s not that I mind some of them being up there, it’s that they shouldn’t all be grouped together like that.

  23. New B1G divisions will be simple east/west:
    East: Rutgers, Maryland, PSU, OSU, MSU, Michigan, Northwestern
    West: Nebraska, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Purdue, Indiana

    Conference will move to 9 conference games starting 2014. Maybe there will be a two year delay to 2016. Gotta happen.

    Watch for Big Ten/ACC deal guaranteeing certain number of annual non-com games, maybe associate CIC status for ACC AAU members. I think the B1G will be creative in getting the ACC exit fee reduced by 80% or so…

    • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

      The B1G office has been adamant about keeping Ohio State & Michigan in separate divisions. That is not going to change.

      • The B1G was adamant about having 2 major powers in each division, which split up Michigan and OSU. They weren’t trying to break them up per se. With the subsequent problems in Happy Valley and the continued strong performance of Wisconsin, rough balance is achieved with an east/west split.

        We will need to go to 9-game conference schedule and get away from guaranteed cross divisional opponent, which the east/west split accommodates. Only Northwestern/Illinois season ending rivalry would be disrupted, and that can be resolved by a simple exception.

        Its very important to have Michigan, OSU, and PSU in the same division as Rutgers and Maryland if the east coast platform is going to be maximized.

        By going to east/west split, the inconvenience of the wide geographic footprint is minimized.

        • Brian says:

          Rich Baxter,

          “The B1G was adamant about having 2 major powers in each division, which split up Michigan and OSU. They weren’t trying to break them up per se.”

          You’re wrong. They very specifically wanted to split the two and nobody (ADs, presidents) ever came out and said they disagreed with that decision. The other 8 original 10 members clearly wanted to play OSU or MI every year. If the B10 wasn’t intent on the split, they wouldn’t be in opposite divisions playing a crossover game in the final week with a chance for a rematch the following week.

          “With the subsequent problems in Happy Valley and the continued strong performance of Wisconsin, rough balance is achieved with an east/west split.”

          PSU hasn’t suffered too much yet, and you don’t create division with such a temporary situation in mind.

          “We will need to go to 9-game conference schedule and get away from guaranteed cross divisional opponent, which the east/west split accommodates.”

          We should be at 9 games now, but they chickened out. Locked rivals aren’t going away, though. The B10 wants to make sure they get at least 4 king/king games every year and 2 for each. For this, brand trumps on field success to some extent.

          “Its very important to have Michigan, OSU, and PSU in the same division as Rutgers and Maryland if the east coast platform is going to be maximized.”

          No, it isn’t. You have to have PSU there and another king maintains balance. A third is a nice touch, but not that important.

          6-1-1 schedule:
          PSU, OSU – 100%
          NE, MI – 33%

          They’d play 2.67 kings per year, including 1.33 kings at home.

          Adding MI to their division:
          PSU, OSU, MI – 100%
          NE – 17%

          They’d play 3.17 kings per year, 1.58 at home. That’s 3 more home games in 12 years (19-16). That’s not enough difference to screw up the balance.

          “By going to east/west split, the inconvenience of the wide geographic footprint is minimized.”

          That’s true, and would be more relevant if airplanes didn’t exist.

      • bullet says:

        That was before Sandusky.

        • zeek says:

          Perhaps, but just looking at how Penn State performed this year; you could make the case that their historical trajectory is unlikely to be altered.

          • bullet says:

            They haven’t truly felt the impact. Their reduced additional scholarships coupled with attrition will hurt them more each year. Plus, the caliber of their recruits will decline.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Example: USC. People were thinking they were “back” when in fact they were entering the first of three years of scholarship reduction.

          • zeek says:

            That’s fair bullet.

            But if you’re the Big Ten office, why not just let Ohio State rampage through that division for a half-decade and get to several BCS Final Fours?

            Then sort it out later if you see that Penn State’s trajectory has been irreparably altered post 2020.

          • Brian says:

            Also, I don’t think the B10 will mind that much if WI and PSU trade status for a few years. PSU will be back to full bore by 2020 at the latest.

          • bullet says:

            You could look at it the other way. Do something that makes sense now and 10 years from now change it if PSU recovers. If you are really certain the impact goes away, you just move Illinois to the Northwest. If you aren’t certain, you could go to an east/west.

          • bullet says:

            The question is if people forget about Sandusky. History says probably yes. But PSU has 3 problems-Sandusky, the severe probation and the loss of a coaching legend (its always hard to follow a legend). So I’m not certain PSU comes back to where they were. I don’t think they decline like Minnesota. But do they have to settle for being an Iowa or Wisconsin when they make it back? Time will tell.

          • @bullet: PSU has one advantage over Minnesota and that’s recruiting grounds. Pennsylvania is a great state for high school talent. Also, unlike Minnesota, PSU has a massive stadium and is used to spending a lot of money to maintain a top-flight football program. They can’t *afford* to become Minnesota with a 110k seat stadium.

            Now, I’m a major OSU fan, so I don’t really care if PSU is great or not. But I think it’s good for the BigTen that they are, and since they’re a historic power I doubt they’ll fade into history quietly. I’d expect them to end up more like FSU. Languish in mediocrity for a while, then come back eventually.

    • Brian says:

      Rich Baxter,

      “New B1G divisions will be simple east/west:
      East: Rutgers, Maryland, PSU, OSU, MSU, Michigan, Northwestern
      West: Nebraska, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Purdue, Indiana”

      No, they won’t. First, there isn’t a clear demarcation line anymore. You have to split IN or MI (or IL in your case, which is really not east/west), and once you have to do that you might as well draw an angled line or put them together by success.

      The easiest move is to keep the current lineup and put 1 newbie on each side, but that won’t work because they both need to play PSU annually. Next easiest is to move IL (on par with the average of MD and RU) to the west and add the newbies to the east. That seems the most likely course as it reunites NW and IL and they could be the locked rivals for RU and MD. I doubt they’ll completely restructure the divisions, but they could. In that case, I’d suggest this:

      (In order of locked rivals)
      Option A
      North – MI, PSU, WI, MSU, MD, MN, RU
      South – OSU, NE, IA, NW, PU, IL, IN

      Option B
      East – MI, PSU, MSU, PU, MD, RU, IN
      West – OSU, NE, WI, IA, NW, IL, MN

      “Conference will move to 9 conference games starting 2014. Maybe there will be a two year delay to 2016. Gotta happen.”

      It was supposed to happen before and they chickened out. I agree going to 14 adds to the push for it, but the schools with locked OOC rivals will continue to push back. It probably wouldn’t happen until 2017 (when the new TV deal starts) or even later since so many teams already have 4 OOC games scheduled for future years

      “Watch for Big Ten/ACC deal guaranteeing certain number of annual non-com games, maybe associate CIC status for ACC AAU members.”

      Maybe, but unlikely.

      “I think the B1G will be creative in getting the ACC exit fee reduced by 80% or so…”

      Easy enough.

      1. Precedent from other leagues is to negotiate it down to about half.
      2. MD can argue they left ASAP after the vote to raise the exit fee. Therefore, the old fee should apply to them (like when a CC changes its terms and you get a month or 2 to close the card or accept the changes).
      3. MD can argue the damages aren’t nearly that large because UConn is ready and willing to fill their hole. Just change names on the schedules and you’re good to go with an equivalent program in FB, MBB and WBB.

    • cutter says:

      If the Big Ten expects to put fans in the seats at FedEx Field and the Meadowlands plus leverage it’s alumni presence in the northeast and mid Atlantic for the Big Ten Network, I would ssuggest that the eastern distribution vision of the conference would include Michigan, Penn State and Ohio State.

      Combine those three with Maryland, Rutgers, Michigan State and Indiana for the eastern conference e of the Big Ten. One protected cross division game with a nine game conference e schedule. Make sure Michigan, Ohio State and Penn State play either Maryland or Rutgers on the east coast each year.

      I realize this is counter to the competitive balance element that was used when Nebraska joined the conference. But given the circumstances, this may be the way to go forward. It also solves the Michigan Ohio State problem and puts Wisconsin back in the same division as Nebraska, Iowa and Minnesota. Illinois and Northwestern stick together as well. Purdue and Indiana become protected rivals.

      • zeek says:

        They’ll definitely consider that angle of it.

        But I think they’ll realize that the conference might become too unbalanced if virtually all of its major population centers outside of Illinois were located in the East.

        From a development perspective, it might be good idea to go East-West and maximize the times that the schools with big NYC-DC corridor fanbases get to go to those schools, but that can’t override the competition factor.

        You still want to make sure that you have enough strong schools anchoring the Western half of the conference, and we’ll need Michigan there with Nebraska to ensure that.

        Having Ohio State and Penn State travel to Maryland or Rutgers every year will likely be seen as enough to not necessitate Michigan/Michigan State also joining that half of the conference.

      • Brian says:


        “If the Big Ten expects to put fans in the seats at FedEx Field and the Meadowlands”

        Who says they do? I’d expect them to try to fill Rutgers and Byrd first. If RU and MD want to convert a home game into a neutral site game, that’s their business.

        “plus leverage it’s alumni presence in the northeast and mid Atlantic for the Big Ten Network, I would ssuggest that the eastern distribution vision of the conference would include Michigan, Penn State and Ohio State.”

        No. They’ll get 2 of the three and the third on occasion. You can’t screw up your divisions to help RU and MD.

        “One protected cross division game with a nine game conference e schedule.”

        We’d all like to think going to 14 would bring back the 9 game schedule. You need that or pods.

        “Make sure Michigan, Ohio State and Penn State play either Maryland or Rutgers on the east coast each year.”

        I think getting a guarantee of at least 1 king per year at home is fine. They’ll see the others with some regularity.

        “I realize this is counter to the competitive balance element that was used when Nebraska joined the conference. But given the circumstances, this may be the way to go forward.”

        What has happened that would change their priorities when establishing divisions? Why lose balance and screw up the CCG for MD and RU?

        “It also solves the Michigan Ohio State problem”

        The B10 doesn’t see a MI/OSU problem. Only some of the fans do.

        “and puts Wisconsin back in the same division as Nebraska, Iowa and Minnesota. Illinois and Northwestern stick together as well. Purdue and Indiana become protected rivals.”

        The B10 clearly prefers balance to pure geography. Accept that.

  24. dcphx says:

    Sorry for the length, I’m a math geek.

    I was doing some crunching of numbers earlier this evening while discussing the latest potential conference realignment catnip. Particularly in relation to the ACC exit fee. Regardless if the figure ends up at $50m (doubtful) or $20m the long term view says that you have to make the move and pay the up front cost to get into the more stable conference and guarantee yourself a seat at the cool kids table. In fact after doing the figures with a few assumptions, it’s a no brainer decision for Maryland.

    Last year the B1G paid out a total of $285m to the members, $24.6m for every school but Nebraska who got $14m. The ESPN contract is $1b/10 years so that’s about $100m of the $285m. While I do not assume the ESPN contract is flat, 2011 was the 5th of 10 years and the payout would have been pretty close to the average so long as the contract has a consistent bump (ie +3% per year or whatever). The BTN money is around $85m. That leaves $100m from various bowl, NCAA and other revenue sources. This seems like quite a bit, but there is around $35-40m in other TV revenue, and the bowl payouts are quite substantial maybe as high as $50-60m before team expenses are taken out, assuming that the B1G gets $15m from the Rose Bowl television contract in addition to the BCS payout of $22+m.

    In 2017, the B1G will have a new ESPN contract. The B12′s contract is $20m/school. The ACC is $16m/school. While that contract is often reported as $17m/school, the conference takes a cut as well so it really is $16m. The Pac12 deal is $21m/school. The SEC surely will be expecting a premium over each of those deals in addition to assistance in launching it’s own version of the BTN. I would expect both the SEC and the B1G to land deals in the $25m range per school.

    The difference between the ACC and B1G would be $9m/year plus the BTN payout of $7m+/year (which is growing). So when you’re making an evaluation as Maryland about how much more revenue they will see, it’s going to be $15m+ per year. Over the life of the current ACC contract, Maryland would see about $200m more from the B1G contract. Even if the exit fee is $50m, you’re talking about making that up in 3 1/3 years. That’s not really a difficult decision. However, in addition to paying off the exit fee, they probably will get a reduced distribution while buying equity into the BTN. Forbes valued the BTN at $1.3 billion in September 2012 so it’s worth to each individual school is about $50-55m. So even after paying the exit fee and buying an equity share of the BTN, Maryland would be $100m positive in a move to the B1G.

    This got me thinking, how much B1G distribution per team could we see down the line? It’s nearly $25m now, what will it be with new BCS and Rose Bowl rights fees . I’m generally assuming that the tickets pay for the game while the rights fees go straight to the B1G and Pac. The RB rights went from $30m to $80m so an increase of $25m/year to each conference. The BCS fee is expect to be $500m/year with 80% or $400m shared between the 5 power conferences. That’s another $80m/year or an increase of $50m over the roughly $30m that 2 BCS teams would be paid in the current format.

    Start with $100m for the current smaller TV, CCG and various bowl payouts including the current BCS. Add in increase Rose Bowl and BCS payouts of $75m. Then the ESPN rights fee would average $350m (14 teams x $25m/year) or $4.2b over 12 years. If the contract is built with a 5% annual increase then it would start around $265m and increase to $450m in the 12th year. The BTN payout is a bit more difficult to figure out as I’m not sure how much is rights fees and how much is profit sharing. However assuming again a 2.5% annual increase and that $7.2m was paid in 2011 as rights fees, then the rights fees would have started around $70m/year and would finish around $145m/year in 2032. That’s going to come fairly close to the published contract of $2.8 billion over 25 years. In 2017 the BTN would be around $100m to the conference and the total distribution would be $540m or $38.5m per school. By the end of that 12 year ESPN contract (using my assumptions on contract growth) it would be close to $54m/school with over $41m coming from the BTN and ESPN contracts. On average it would be $45m/year from 2017 to 2029.

    • Richard says:

      Actually, I expect the Tier 1 & 2 national TV contracts to net $30-$40M/school, so tack on another $10M/school.

    • bullet says:

      Even without any speculation, B1G makes around $20.7 million + $7.2+ on BTN. ACC is $17.1. ACC at best makes $2.0 million more for Notre Dame (and that’s probably high). That’s $8.8 million per year minimum. That easily pays for the $20 million fee. And, of course, the ACC is locked until 2029 and the B1G renews in 2016.

      Even if the B1G only escalated 3% a year starting in 2016 from the AVERAGE of their latest 10 year contract (not the end point), that would be $5 million more a year.

  25. Brian says:


    “As Dan Wetzel pointed on in his column on the latest news, this isn’t a no-brainer move for the Big Ten on the level of adding Nebraska (or schools such as Notre Dame or Texas).”

    I think people are looking at this the wrong way. The proper comparison is this:

    B10: + NE + MD + RU + championship game
    SEC: + TAMU + MO
    P12: + CO + Utah + championship game
    ACC: + Pitt + Syracuse – MD

    Why ignore NE in all this? This is part B of the same round of expansion to me. The B10 at least tied with the SEC on this round of expansion. It gained a king and 2 sizable states, plus the attention and money of a CCG. The SEC added a huge state and a sizable state while bolstering their academics.

    “The timing of the move is a bit curious”

    Is it?

    1. The ACC just approved a new, higher exit fee and added a partial member. If that combo was the straw that broke the camel’s back and sent MD to gauge the B10′s interest trough back channels, this has happened pretty quickly. Do we know when the new penalty officially starts? Is it possible MD will argue that they left as soon and as quietly as possible after the decision so the old penalty should apply? It’s like when a credit card changes your terms and you get 30 days or something to close the account if you refuse their changes.

    2. The playoff starts in 2014, bringing everyone a windfall. This is also when the new schools would join and have to start paying penalties. Conveniently that’s a few million per year in found money for these schools right when they’ll need it most.

    3. Before the playoff starts is the best time to set your alignment so you can get the best deal. New bowl deals also will start in 2014.

    4. The next B10 TV deal will start in 2017. That means negotiations will start in 2015-6. That’s just enough time to add new schools and show what the networks are bidding on without a prolonged period on an outdated deal.

    “but the additions of Maryland and Rutgers fit what Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany stated was one of the long-term objectives of the conference’s original expansion exploration announced three years ago: making sure that the Big Ten keeps up with the changing demographics of the United States for next several decades.”

    Yep, he just used 2 stages to reach his goals instead of one like a UT or TAMU would have done.

    “To be sure, it also doesn’t hurt to have a massive amount of potential television revenue tacked on from the Big Ten Network getting onto basic cable in the Washington/Baltimore and New York City media markets.”

    I think an undermentioned thing is penetrating Philly fully. Last I heard, BTN wasn’t on expanded basic in all of Philly (in parts, yes). Adding RU and MD should increase the access there as much as CFB and MBB can.

    “The risk for the Big Ten is more with the addition of Rutgers.”

    I don’t see much risk. At worst we get a good school with bad sports with a potential big city market. We haven’t kicked out IL for being that, so why is RU a risk?

    “What the Big Ten is banking on is that the combination of Rutgers, Penn State, Maryland and Michigan (along with bringing in marquee schools such as Ohio State and Nebraska into town) is going to drive interest for the casual sports fan in New York and New Jersey.”

    According to that rough online survey published in the NY Times a while ago, OSU is the top team for more CFB fans in NYC than anybody else. I’m not saying that’s factually true, but I do believe they also have a large fan base in NYC to go with MI, PSU and RU among others.

    “Jim Delany and the powers that be in the Big Ten must have finally gotten comfortable with the belief that this combo is going to work or else they wouldn’t be pulling the trigger on the move.”

    Maybe. Or maybe MD wasn’t interested before. You can’t go east with just RU, really. They could have tried MO and RU, but perhaps they didn’t see the required long term potential in that pairing. MD and RU work together and with PSU to reach critical mass in the mid-atlantic seaboard (NYC – Philly – Baltimore – DC).

    “There have been few non-ACC people that have argued about the strength of the ACC off-the-field more than I have over the past couple of years,”

    Me, too, but some things have changed. The playoff details are coming out. The ACC expanded for hoops. The ACC’s new TV deal is known. The new major bowl values are known. ND partially joined the ACC. The ACC installed a much higher exit penalty. Each of those decisions altered the landscape a little. When combined with MD’s large deficit in the AD, I can see how they became vulnerable to poaching.

    • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

      In regards to the first point, I was going to post the exact same thing. It makes perfect sense that the ACC vote to raise the exit fees would accelerate the time table for any program that had even the slightest thought of looking around.

      Also if the ND move came after negotiatiating with the ACC, Big 12 & B1G then Delaney may just be moving directly on to plan B.

    • mushroomgod says:

      I do hope this happens….so I also hope that this was MD’s initiative, as you suggest, and not the BIG’s. That way it’s harder to back out…………kinda makes sense that it happened that way.

    • zeek says:

      I’m with you on most of these points.

      I would say though that you don’t have to look at the Nebraska addition in order to say that Maryland/Rutgers is a better set of additions than Colorado/Utah or Pitt/Syracuse. You can already draw that conclusion at that level of expansion, and then consider the SEC’s expansion alone versus a combination of Nebraska/Maryland/Rutgers.

      Also, with respect to the clustering aspect of Big Ten alums in NYC and D.C., it’s a good point.

      That’s also why I think you want to leave Ohio State and Penn State with both Maryland and Rutgers as far as divisions go. We should want those two schools playing against Maryland and Rutgers every year and travelling to them every year.

      You’re definitely right though with respect to this notion of Rutgers being a big risk. It’s really not that much of a risk at all.

      No one knows what these schools are going to look like in 20 or 30 years. Right now both have athletics departments that are suffering from deficits and money shortfalls. In a decade or two though, who knows how much that can change.

      For all we know, Maryland really could become Oregon East within a decade or two. A huge influx of money and backing by UnderArmour could do that. Even if it doesn’t, it’s not like we’ve added a school that brings nothing to the table.

      When you look at how much better some schools are doing than their historical past (Wisconsin, Iowa, Northwestern) over the past decade or two, it’s impossible to say that the school that you’re getting right now is what it will be in a decade or two.

      A healthy budget and Ohio State or Penn State coming to town every year can change things.

      • Michael in Raleigh says:

        Why Florida State or Clemson couldn’t fire up the fan base while Ohio State and the shell of Penn State could is beyond me.

        • Brian says:

          Michael in Raleigh,

          “Why Florida State or Clemson couldn’t fire up the fan base while Ohio State and the shell of Penn State could is beyond me.”

          Well, PSU is in the neighborhood and has history with them. PSU would actually care about the games a little, too. Proximity makes a difference.

          MD/PSU – 37 games
          MD/FSU – 22

      • Brian says:


        “I’m with you on most of these points.”

        Brilliant minds and all that.

        “I would say though that you don’t have to look at the Nebraska addition in order to say that Maryland/Rutgers is a better set of additions than Colorado/Utah or Pitt/Syracuse.”


        “You can already draw that conclusion at that level of expansion, and then consider the SEC’s expansion alone versus a combination of Nebraska/Maryland/Rutgers.”

        You could. I just think it’s wrong to not include NE as part of this round of expansion.

        “Also, with respect to the clustering aspect of Big Ten alums in NYC and D.C., it’s a good point.

        That’s also why I think you want to leave Ohio State and Penn State with both Maryland and Rutgers as far as divisions go. We should want those two schools playing against Maryland and Rutgers every year and travelling to them every year.”

        It’s one reason why I expect them to keep the current divisions but shift IL west and add MD and RU in the east.

  26. Brian says:

    I just want to give a little shout out to Vandy for beating TN to get bowl eligible. Beating TN is a rare thing for them, and bowl haven’t been too common either.

    The only question for TN is whether they fire Dooley before or after the KY game. They can’t make a bowl and the guy is a nut case.

  27. Jason says:

    Im a Maryland grad, and to me this potential move is a no brainer from a UMCP perspective. We’ve cut 7 varsity sports because the Athletic Department is hemorraging money. We’re by no means a “great” football program, and Im not going to try to say that we are, but we arent quite as inept as we’re sometimes thought of either. Last decade we went to 7 bowl games, and won 5 of those. We’re in the middle of a rebuild project that looked like it might even be ahead of schedule until every scholarship QB had their ACL explode. Well, one was a foot injury, but yeah…we arguably couldve been bowl eligible if we werent starting a LB at QB. Basketball is on the way back, and the olympic/non rev sport programs are usually strong (soccer, lax, field hockey etc). The problem has always been revenue. The football schedule has always been underwhelming at best, and I really think this could provide a shot in the arm, trading in the Wakes and BCs and whatnot for Iowa and Michigan States. We’ve already got a contract for a future home and home with Wisconsin. Despite what some of the older alums think, we dont have a “rival”. UVa to a degree, but no bloodfeud youd expect a founding member of a 60 year old conference to have. On the hoops side, yeah there will be some angst losing UNC and Duke, but we’re always 2nd fiddle to them in regards to each other, and its not like the B1G is lacking in quality hoops programs. Though it would be interesting to be on the other side of the ACC/B1G challenge. And as a grad, I look at this well beyond the football impact. The CIC, the revenue from the BTN and other B1G TV contracts open a lot of opportunites for the school as a school. As others have mentioned, the exit fee, even if it is 50MM, which I would doubt, would be made up in just a short amount of time. We’ve been slightly discontent since this whole carousel started spinning.

    And let’s not forget one factor that I havent seen mentioned yet…Kevin Plank and Under Armour. Forget for a moment the Eastern Oregon uniform program, theres a lot a lot of money there, and theyre continually picking up schools across the nation like Auburn, Utah, S Carolina, and B1G’er Northwestern.

    I dont get a vote, but Im on board. Sure there are things about the ACC I’d miss, but mostly from a hoops perspective, and theres no reason we cant schedule those schools as OOC games. We’re a good school, with a huge research program, and ultimately, it might not be sexy to say, but the admins and alumni ought to be focused more on what it can do for the school beyond “but we wont be in Dukes conference anymore”. Especially since Duke doesnt REALLY give 2 you know whats about us.

    • zeek says:

      It’s nice hearing from a Maryland grad (I’m wondering where our resident Maryland fan Vincent went given that he pushed this angle of the story for a while).

      FWIW, your administrators are definitely going to spend a lot of time looking at the non-football angle, and if this move does occur, that’s likely to be the highest selling point other than the long-term revenue influx and stability.

      The Eastern version of Oregon comparison is all about potential. UnderArmour is extremely young, and it’ll only become a bigger asset over time to Maryland as UnderArmour grows and Plank’s desire to see Maryland compete at a higher level is gradually fulfilled. Considering Maryland’s location right in the middle of a high talent recruiting zone combined with all of that; this is a good bet on the future for the Big Ten.

      • vp19 says:

        Zeek (and all of you who have wondered where I’ve been the past few weeks), on the morning of Nov. 17, I went out to get a bus to do some food shopping, slipped on frost on some grass and tore a quadricep muscle in my right knee. I underwent surgery the following morning, was sent to rehab a few days later, and finally returned home (to Internet access) this afternoon. It was frustrating seeing Maryland finally reach the Big Ten while being unable to put forth my two cents. Glad to be back.

        I fully agree with Jason’s perspective. This is a great move for the University of Maryland, placing it with its land-grant, flagship peers (Wisconsin, Michigan, Indiana, Ohio State). It will lift the academic perception of the university over the long haul, just as it has for Penn State (and will for the University of Nebraska). Athletically, it will boost Maryland football to be in a conference with a genuine football brand, will benefit the Big Ten in both men’s and women’s basketball, and help Terrapin teams in baseball and other sports where they were at a climate disadvantage vs. the rest of the ACC. Plus, of course, let’s not forget the $. The ACC was and is a fine league, but the Big Ten is the only conference I would leave it for.

  28. Nick says:

    Has the commentator on the Northwestern Scout board said anything about this? Not sure if it was ever decided if he was legit or not, but it was a great read

  29. Denogginizer says:

    Go B1G Red

  30. Josh says:

    Why does everyone think that the SEC’s play into North Carolina is NC State? If the B1G takes Rutgers, MD, UNC and UVA, if your the SEC are you crazy not to invite Duke? Huge following nationwide (love them or hate them), great Academics, and just imagine UK-Duke 2-3 times a year.

    • Richard says:

      Does Duke get the SEC’s channel on basic in NC by itself?

      I think, once ND joins the B10 (and once the core ACC states of NC, VA, and MD go, what’s left? FSU and Clemson would be gone by then as well), so will Duke.

      • frug says:

        Why would the Big Ten want Duke if they already have UNC, UVa and ND?

        • Richard says:

          1. To get UNC, you’d likely need to add 2 of their 3 traditional rivals (UVa, NCSU, Duke), which the B10 can do but SEC really can’t.
          2. If you add UMD, Rutgers, UVa, UNC, and ND, you still need another school to make for an even number.

          3. Basketball does matter a little.

          • frug says:

            In that scenario, I think it might be more likely that they just stop at 16 (UVa, ND, Maryland and Rutgers) than add two Carolina schools. Alternately, the B1G could add Maryland, Rutgers and ND then Carolina they either they join without any of their BFFs or they will just grab UVa and UNC can take their chances elsewhere.

            (Of course the other possibility is that the Big 10 holds off on announcing team 14 for a while to see if they can pry away somebody better than Rutgers)

          • Richard says:

            A Big20 would actually allow the original 10 B10 members to play each other more often than stopping at 16.

          • frug says:


            You seriously believe that Nebraska is going to agree to join a division made up entirely of East Coast schools?

            The Iowa Black Friday game is already turning into a pretty big event and Minnesota, Northwestern and Michigan are all way more interesting to Nebraska fans than any ACC/Big East schools besides Penn St. (and with the Nits handicapped for the next decade that won’t be as big a deal as it used to).

            No amount of extra recruiting exposure would make Nebraska happy with playing Duke, UVa, Rutgers, Maryland and UNC every year.

          • frug says:

            For what it’s worth, if the Big 10 tried 2 10 team divisions they would probably need to extend the GOR for another 60 years because otherwise you are just setting the conference up for an eventual split.

          • Richard says:

            Any Black Friday game against a worthy opponent would be big for UNL. What’s better than an annual Black Friday showdown against Iowa? A Black Friday game vs. Iowa half the time and a Black Friday game vs. Miami half the time.

          • Richard says:

            Misstated. A Black Friday game vs. Iowa half the time and a Black Friday game vs. PSU half the time.

          • frug says:

            Disagree. Especially since Iowa is Nebraska’s only bus trip.

    • frug says:

      Duke is a horrible cultural fit for the SEC (it’s a Northern school that happens to be located in a Southern state) and an even worse economic fit (it’s the only AQ team in the country to make more gross revenue off its MBB than its FB team).

      Duke and the SEC is a case of mutual disinterest and they would only link up if they were each others last options.

    • Brian says:


      “Why does everyone think that the SEC’s play into North Carolina is NC State?”

      First, we eliminate all schools except the ACC 4. Then we eliminate WF as a terrible choice (less popular, too small, bad at FB). Duke and UNC we presume are too snobbish about their academics to chose the SEC if they have another choice like the B10 or ACC. Also, a small private hoops school with a fan base in the northeast like Duke isn’t a great fit. That leaves the 2 state schools, and AAU UNC seems more likely to prefer the B10. By process of elimination, that leaves NCSU, which is much more similar to many of the SEC schools.

      “If the B1G takes Rutgers, MD, UNC and UVA, if your the SEC are you crazy not to invite Duke? Huge following nationwide (love them or hate them), great Academics, and just imagine UK-Duke 2-3 times a year.”

      That’s great for hoops but does nothing for FB or to get new TV markets.

    • Gailikk says:

      I can answer that one for you. I live in raleigh, my wife is a NCSU grad my friends are DUke and UNC grads, (I went to ECU). Duke has no football following whatsoever. In fact I can tell you that a majority of Duke basketball fans are NCSU football fans. Duke can’t sell tickets because no one goes to those games unless it is a marquee school from another conference. Look if the SEC wants to get into the Raleigh television market in football then they need the football fans. And that means NCSU around here, and then UNC for everyone else. If the SEC gets those two schools they lock up the football revenue in North Carolina.

  31. Eric says:

    I think the Notre Dame move probably brought about a lot of this. The Big Ten wants northeast exposure. Things were fine with the region the divided. Now though, we’re talking about a world where every major northeast team besides Penn State and UConn are members or affiliated with the ACC. They felt they had to act or accept ACC dominance of the region in football which was a big no-no.

    • zeek says:

      I like to think about it like this.

      Delany always had two plans to get to 14 that involved maximizing the Northeast exposure for the conference.

      It was always ND + 1 (Maryland or Rutgers) or it was going to be Maryland + Rutgers (if it became evident that ND was never coming).

      We’re in the second universe now, so it has to happen.

      It doesn’t really have that much to do with ACC dominance in the region; it has more to do with historical trajectory along with getting an angle on the Mid-Atlantic.

      The analogy of college football expansion to Risk is basically as tried and true one as you’re going to find.

    • Eric says:

      Thinking about it more though, I could see this also along the Texas A&M situation. Nebraska and Colorado left and everyone in the Big 12 looked around. All 10 remaining members ended up signing back on. Aggie fans though weren’t happy they weren’t going to the SEC after the chance though.

      This wouldn’t be quite the same, but the huge exit penalty might have prompted Maryland to go to the Big Ten and say now or never.

  32. brindelin says:

    One of the things that sits poorly with me is the potential viability of the forced carriage networks down the road. Obviously, it looks like forced carriage is here to stay for a bit longer but if this is long-term decision I think brands win out over captive cable audiences.

    I can’t imagine we aren’t in some sort of a la carte television land in the distant future.

    • bullet says:

      I think that’s a good point. Its a point in favor of the more flexible Big 12 model over the Pac 12 and Big 10 networks.

      • zeek says:

        The Big Ten split the egg though. It went 50-50 between the Pac-12′s wholly owned approach and the Big 12′s 0% ownership approach (through Fox regional or LHN for example).

        • ccrider55 says:

          Doesn’t the BTN become wholly owned in around 15 years, baring an extension or free market offering of the expiring Fox portion?

          • zeek says:

            Yes, the BTN will be wholly owned in the early/mid 2030s when the current agreement expires.

            My guess though is that Fox and the Big Ten will reach some kind of extension whereby they take control of 51% or 49% of the network in exchange for guaranteed payouts.

          • zeek says:

            It just makes it a lot safer for the conference when you have a network bearing roughly 1/2 of the burden and giving you guaranteed payouts in exchange.

            I’ve come around to really liking the approach we have in light of the current discussions on the future viability of cable networks.

            The Pac-12 is really bearing the risk of the network approach, so they probably have more upside possibility, but there’s considerable risk as well.

          • ccrider55 says:

            I agree that it is the safer way, but I’m not sure the risk is that high. You are offering live sports broadcasts, the only programming that seems impervious to dvr, tevo, etc and therefore is most desired by advertisers. The post from 2010 said that, surprisingly, 60% of BTN revenue was advertising and 40% carriage.

  33. Big Ten alum and DC native. The B1G is sadly misinformed if they think Maryland football is a draw in the Maryland, or even Baltimore TV market. Penn State and Virginia Tech is bigger. The conference already has local TV exposure. I saw three Big Ten games on TV here on local channels and ESPN.

    The most credible part of this story is that YOU think there’s something to it.

    • Should have been ” in the DC, or even Baltimore TV market.”

    • Richard says:

      It’s about rights fees, demographics, and recruiting grounds, not exposure. The BTN is already on a lot of systems nationwide, but PSU+UMD jacks up the fees the BTN can charge in MD vs. PSU by itself. Also, the BTN shows more basketball than football. Are you telling me that MD folks would be fine with not being able to see Terps basketball?

      • Thanks for the explanation. This idea is about football, not basketball. I already subscribe to BTN thru DiSH. I watched two B1G games on ESPN Saturday and one other on local broadcast TV. I suppose there’s something in the nitty-gritty that gets more rights fees in Mid-Atlantic markets. I just can’t see that coming because of the Terrapins. Local fans are not denied seeing Maryland basketball. Local outlets seem more interested in broadcasting Duke or North Carolina. Jim Delany has proven very smart about expansion. I’m skeptical of this one, but we shall see.

  34. duffman says:

    Week 12 :

    ACC : AQ = 6-6 : NAQ = DNP : FCS = DNP : OFF = NONE :: U = NONE
    ACC (5-5) : B1G (DNP) : BE (1-0) : B12 (DNP) : PAC (DNP) : SEC (DNP) : IND (0-1)
    CUSA (DNP) : MAC (DNP) : MWC (DNP) : SB (DNP) : WAC (DNP) : FCS (DNP)

    B 12 : AQ = 4-4 : NAQ = DNP : FCS = DNP : OFF = TWO :: U = NONE
    ACC (DNP) : B1G (DNP) : BE (DNP) : B12 (4-4) : PAC (DNP) : SEC (DNP) : IND (DNP)
    CUSA (DNP) : MAC (DNP) : MWC (DNP) : SB (DNP) : WAC (DNP) : FCS (DNP)

    BE : AQ = 3-2 : NAQ = DNP : FCS = DNP : OFF = THREE :: U = NONE
    ACC (0-1) : B1G (DNP) : BE (1-1) : B12 (DNP) : PAC (DNP) : SEC (1-0) : IND (1-0)
    CUSA (DNP) : MAC (DNP) : MWC (DNP) : SB (DNP) : WAC (DNP) : FCS (DNP)

    B1G : AQ = 6-6 : NAQ = DNP : FCS = DNP : OFF = NONE :: U = Ohio State
    ACC (DNP) : B1G (5-5) : BE (DNP) : B12 (DNP) : PAC (DNP) : SEC (DNP) : IND (DNP)
    CUSA (DNP) : MAC (DNP) : MWC (DNP) : SB (DNP) : WAC (DNP) : FCS (DNP)

    IND : AQ = 1-1 : NAQ = 1-1 : FCS = DNP : OFF = NONE :: U = Notre Dame
    ACC (1-0) : B1G (DNP) : BE (0-1) : B12 (DNP) : PAC (DNP) : SEC (DNP) : IND (DNP)
    CUSA (DNP) : MAC (DNP) : MWC (DNP) : SB (DNP) : WAC (1-1) : FCS (DNP)

    PAC : AQ = 6-6 : NAQ = DNP : FCS = DNP : OFF = NONE :: U = NONE
    ACC (DNP) : B1G (DNP) : BE (DNP) : B12 (DNP) : PAC (6-6) : SEC (DNP) : IND (DNP)
    CUSA (DNP) : MAC (DNP) : MWC (DNP) : SB (DNP) : WAC (DNP) : FCS (DNP)

    SEC : AQ = 3-4 : NAQ = DNP : FCS = 7-0 : OFF = NONE :: U = NONE
    ACC (DNP) : B1G (DNP) : BE (0-1) : B12 (DNP) : PAC (DNP) : SEC (3-3) : IND (DNP)
    CUSA (DNP) : MAC (DNP) : MWC (DNP) : SB (DNP) : WAC (DNP) : FCS (7-0)


    Best scheduler = everybody played about equal
    Worst scheduler = SEC (7) FCS schools – most in the SoCon – and BE gets mention


    Observations :
    Ohio State is still undefeated which keeps a B1G in the top – the good
    The collapse of Iowa in the second half of the season – the bad
    While close, Illinois could not get the go ahead score against Purdue – the ugly


    My weekly B 12 is over rated observations :

    Sagarin still ranks the B 12 as the toughest conference as updated 11.18.2012 @ ~ 3 am

    I included the ELO numbers this week for Brian (90% of conference has Top 40 ELO)
    **** Bowl eligible OOC schools in BOLD ****

    # 5 Kansas State (10-1) : #27 SoS : #7 ELO :::: W 6-5 ACC, W 4-7 SB, W 3-8 FCS
    # 9 Oklahoma (8-2) : #14 SoS : #11 ELO :::: L 11-0 IND, W 3-8 CUSA, W 4-7 FCS
    #13 Texas (8-2) : #24 SoS : #14 ELO :::: W 5-6 SEC, W 4-7 MWC, W 4-8 MWC
    #14 Oklahoma State (7-3) : #21 SoS : #17 ELO :::: L 7-4 PAC, W 6-4 SB, W 1-10 FCS
    #23 Texas Tech (7-4) : #28 SoS : #22 ELO :::: W 4-8 MWC, W 3-7 WAC, W 4-7 FCS
    #29 Baylor (5-5) : #11 SoS : #39 ELO :::: W 5-6 CUSA, W 7-4 SB, W 8-3 FCS
    #32 Iowa State (6-5) : #6 SoS : #31 ELO :::: W 4-7 B1G, L 9-2 CUSA, W 3-8 FCS
    #35 TCU (6-4) : #29 SoS : #35 ELO :::: W 4-7 B1G, W 5-6 CUSA, W 1-9 FCS
    #38 West Virginia (5-5) : #12 SoS : #29 ELO :::: W 4-7 ACC, W 5-6 CUSA, W 7-4 FCS
    #84 Kansas (1-10) : #1 SoS : #90 ELO :::: L 5-6 CUSA, L 10-1 MAC, W 8-3 FCS

    The B12 has not beaten a single team of note in non conference play!

    B12 is skewed with only 1 school with an ELO over 40! Even though the B12′s OOC opponents continue to rack up losses the B12 SoS continues to grow stronger. If all the crappy teams you beat continue to lose it seems like that should drag your numbers down, not push them up!


    According to Sagarin this is the toughest schedule in the USA so far!
    (they played 2 Top 25, several Top 50, and the rest is junk)
    Game # 1 = 8-3 FCS school
    Game # 2 = 10-1 MAC school who lost to Iowa in neutral site game (N Illinois)
    Game # 3 = 5-6 CUSA school (Rice)
    Game # 4 = 5-5, 2-5 conference team with no big wins
    Game # 5 = 6-5, 3-5 conference team with no big wins
    Game # 6 = 6-4, 3-4 conference team with no big wins
    Game # 7 = 7-4, 4-4 conference team with no big wins
    Game # 8 = 7-3, 5-2 conference team with no big wins
    Game # 9 = 8-2, 5-2 conference team with no big wins
    Game # 10 = 8-2, 6-1 conference team
    Game # 11 = 10-1, 7-1 conference team

    Left on schedule
    5-5, 2-5 conference team with no big wins



    Sagarin states his numbers are connected yet the following schools are below 90% of the B12 schools (5-5 Baylor is number 6 at #29 and 5-5 West Virginia is number 9 at #38) NOTE, teams with .500 records (similar to Baylor and West Virginia) in BOLD :

    ACC (10) or 83.3% : #47 7-4 North Carolina, #54 6-5 Miami-Florida, #60 6-5 Georgia Tech, #65 5-6 Virginia Tech, #71 6-5 NC State, #76 6-5 Duke, #94 4-7 Virginia, #106 4-7 Maryland, #110 5-6 Wake Forest, #115 2-9 Boston College

    Big East (7) or 87.5% : #46 9-1 Louisville, #49 7-3 Cincinnati, #53 6-5 Syracuse, #74 4-6 Pittsburgh, #82 3-7 South Florida, #96 4-6 Temple, #105 4-6 Connecticut

    B1G (6) or 50.0% : #42 5-6 Michigan State, #66 6-5 Minnesota, #67 5-6 Purdue, #69 4-7 Iowa, #72 4-7 Indiana, #126 2-9 Illinois

    B 12 (1) or 10.0% : #84 Kansas 1-10 ********ONLY 1 team out of 10 teams total ********

    IND (2) or 50.0% : #73 Navy 7-4, #152 Army 2-9

    PAC (4) or 33.3% : #45 4-7 Utah, #70 3-9 California, #100 2-9 Washington State, #151 1-10 Colorado

    SEC (6) or 42.9% : #39 5-6 Mississippi, #44 5-6 Missouri, #58 4-7 Tennessee, #64 4-7 Arkansas, #80 3-8 Auburn, #89 2-9 Kentucky

    Look at all the teams above in BOLD that fall below Baylor and West Virginia who do not have winning records yet!

    Again, I am not saying the B12 is a bad conference but I certainly would not say it is the toughest! Any of the following teams could probably beat Baylor or West Virginia on a given game day yet they are all below them. At least they seemed to play tougher OOC games than most of the B12 :

    ACC (5) : #47 North Carolina, #54 Miami, #60 Georgia Tech, #71 NC State, #76 Duke
    Big East (3) : #46 Louisville, #49 Cincinnati, #53 Syracuse
    B1G (1) or 50.0% : #66 Minnesota
    IND (1) : #73 Navy

    • bullet says:

      Middle Tennessee 49, Georgia Tech 28. Georgia Tech will tie or possibly win their division in the ACC. They win outright if Miami loses to Duke. Think you are significantly over-rating the ACC this year. Navy lost to Troy 41-31. Losing to Sun Belt schools just does not make your case.

    • frug says:

      B12 is skewed with only 1 school with an ELO over 40

      You do realize that Unskewed Polls lost the election right? I mean know you think that the Big XII is overrated but you are starting to sound an awful lot like Dean Chambers…

  35. [...] Regarding the ACC exit fee of $50 million. Frank the Tank — who becomes required reading during expansiopocolypse scenarios — makes the salient point. [...]

  36. David Brown says:

    Here is something to keep in mind: Here in NY, SNY has the rights to Big East Games, and if Rutgers joins Pitt & Syracuse in leaving, those rights have as much value as the Sun Belt Conference (Does anyone here really care about San Diego State?). At the same time, Fox bought a piece of YES. Keep in mind, Fox also shows PAC & Big XII Games on MSG, they can avoid paying that fee if they put the games on YES (Hurting BOTH of my competitors in NY). Beyond that, they will be in a better position to get BTN on Cablevision, Time-Warner, & Comcast. If I am Fox, I would gladly give a Maryland bye bye check to the ACC, if it means I can have an agreement that would give me Maryland, Rutgers, and Prime Time Big 10 games (Similar to what they are doing with the PAC & Big XII).
    If Maryland goes, then I see Louisville as the logical choice for the ACC not UConn (Louisville is also a Big XII possibility). They are slightly superior at hoops, and much better at Football. Then the Conference to watch will be the Big XII and do they offer Florida State and (or) Clemson? If so, the next step for the Big East would become BYU & a school like Air Force and (or) Nevada. It will be interesting to see what (If anything) happens this week.

    • zeek says:

      They were putting Rutgers games on YES as well weren’t they? The ones that didn’t already have TV coverage?

    • Brian says:

      David Brown,

      “If Maryland goes, then I see Louisville as the logical choice for the ACC not UConn (Louisville is also a Big XII possibility).”

      Academics are too important to the ACC for that to happen.

      • bullet says:

        UConn just got put on probation, along with a bunch of HBCU’s and a few other schools, for failing to graduate their basketball players. That sounds like academics to me.

        Of course, UNC has had ficticious courses, primarily for athletes, so having pretend “student” athletes may not be important to the ACC.

      • acaffrey says:

        I think Florida State will have a HUGE role in deciding who replaces Maryland this time.

        • Michael in Raleigh says:

          So who exactly would Florida State suggest the league take?

          They know adding UCF or USF benefits no one. They know Notre Dame won’t join for FB (yet).

          Everyone in the Big Ten, SEC, Big 12, and Pac-12 are unavailable. There’s pretty much just Louisville or UConn as even remotely palatable options.

          Frankly, at this point, I find it hard to see why FSU would even give a damn whether it’s UConn or Louisville. The West Virginia ship sailed last year. There’s just not great options out there.

        • bullet says:

          Interestingly Swofford had a meeting with Clemson before he sprung the $50 million exit fee (and they supposedly voted for it, while their AD retired), but didn’t have one with FSU.

  37. John O says:

    Could the ACC stand pat at 13 for football, using some or all of the games vs ND to balance the conference schedule?

    • zeek says:

      Most likely they take UConn.

    • bullet says:

      13 doesn’t work mathematically with divisions unless you get a waiver from the NCAA saying you don’t have to play everyone in your division. The MAC gets away with it but would have fixed it except for Temple leaving, but I don’t see the ACC getting away with it.

    • m (Ag) says:

      You can make it work as long as ND doesn’t mind mostly playing teams from 1 division.

      Your 7 team division will have every team playing 2 cross-divisional games to get to 8 conference games each. That makes 14 cross-divisional games.

      Your 6 team division will need every team playing 3 cross-divisional games to get to 8 conference games each. That makes 18 cross-divisional games needed.

      So have Notre Dame play 4 teams from the 6 team division and count those as ‘cross-divisional games’ in the standings. They can then play their 5th required game against a team from the other division (this wouldn’t count as a conference game).

      Not a good long-term plan, but it could work for a few years.

  38. Bo Darville says:

    Anybody else notice that the Big 10 seems to target wrestling schools?

  39. Ratisbonne says:

    Can only be viewed as a total desperation move on the part of the Big Ten to remain relevant in the years to come. Big Ten obviously felt threatened by the ACC’s recent expansion. It’s funny that the Big Ten, just as recently as a year ago, was thumbing its noses to the begging of teams like Rutgers and even Missouri to get in. Now they are inviting with open arms. And please don’t tell me that ND only joined the ACC because the Big Ten would only admit members who will play football. If your willing to subsidize a $50 mill exit fee for Maryland and bring Rutgers on board, I would think you hardly are too high and mighty to bring ND on board as a partial member, knowing full well that they will bring football on board at some point. ND is not stupid, They are aware that they will have to join a conference at some point and made this move to the ACC with the future in mind.

    • Richard says:

      Actually, I was thinking that your post could only be viewed as total desperation.

      You realize that bringing in ND as a partial member likely is the tug on the ball of twine that causes the whole ACC to unravel, don’t you?

      Next move is up to FSU. If the Noles find a dancing partner, kiss the ACC goodbye.

      • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

        He’s also forgetting that accepting ND as a partial member was a sign of weakness (not quite total desperation but still) on the part of the ACC to begin with.

    • marmutia says:

      Desperation? I doubt it. If the Big Ten can get placed on the Yes Network, that would be a cash cow for years to come and would also be a wise move if cable goes a la carte someday. Yankee fans will not drop that channel. i don’t think with that kind of money coming in that relevance for the Big Ten will be a problem.

  40. zeek says:

    Gary Williams speaks out in favor:,0,3014814.story

    For mushroomgod and others concerned about whether this may be rejected:

    “The Board of Regents, which oversees the entire University of Maryland system, will vote on the proposal at a meeting on Monday, but only Chair James L. Shea and Vice Chair Barry P. Gossett have received any detail so far. Shea and Gossett have been involved in the discussions since they started, the sources said. The rest of the Board of Regents have been kept in the dark until this point. When reached by phone Gossett declined comment, citing the situation’s sensitivity.”

    The Chair and Vice Chair have been in on this the whole time, so they probably have the votes. Of course, this thing could still tank, but it’d be a surprise if they let it go public without an assurance that they could get this past the Board of Regents.

    • Hodgepodge says:

      I imagine they have Brit Kirwan (UMD system chancellor) in their corner as well.

    • zeek says:

      Ryan Snyder ‏@BWISnyder
      According to source, #Maryland to the Big Ten could become official in next 24 hours. Also, according to source, UMD will be in Leaders Div

    • mushroomgod says:

      Huge that Williams favors the move, as he’s well thought of at MD. Detracting somewhat from that weight is the fact that he’s now an EE of the BTN.

      That Board meeting could be a loud one.

      I assume at least some of the Board will moveto put off a vote. Hard to believe that only 2 members of the Board know anything about thre specifics.

      I would be very surprised if there is a final decision tomorrow, although I could be wrong (there’s a first time for everything).

  41. Pablo says:

    Looks like UMD to the B1G makes a lot sense. The financial disparity, in terms of payouts, between the two conference is large…regardless of the exit fee. Just as important, the academic fit is better for UMD in the B1G: A large, flagship state school with massive research & graduate programs. UMD decision-makers will be hard pressed to not seek B1G membership.

    The only chance that UMD PTB don’t pursue membership is if geography or athletic factors gain importance. I understood one rationale for UT PTB for not joining the PAC to be the unnecessary travel burden on student-athletes. UMD is increasingly in the middle of the ACC footprint (they are likely to always be a geographic outlier in the B1G). UMD athletics are the poster-childs for the ACC reputation: passionate about basketball (especially, big-city urban style that allows creativity), OK in football (although never so committed that game days are must-do events), and excellent in suburban non-revenue team sports (consistent power in soccer, lacrosse and WBB).

    • Richard says:

      Only reason why the UMD PTB would not choose the B10 would be irrational emotional pushback from alums who don’t realize that tying themselves to the ACC could very well mean lashing themselves to the mast of a sinking ship (FSU being the main plank keeping the ACC afloat).

  42. Michael in Raleigh says:

    Some quick BCS Bowl Predictions:

    Orange: Florida State (12-1, ACC Champions) vs. Rutgers (11-1, Big East Champions)
    Rose: Stanford (11-2, Pac-12 Champions) vs. Nebraska (11-2, Big Ten Champions)
    Fiesta: Kansas State (11-1, Big 12 Champions) vs. Oregon (11-1, Pac-12 AT LARGE)
    Sugar: Texas A&M (10-2, SEC AT LARGE) vs. Oklahoma (10-2, Big 12 AT LARGE)
    NCG: #1 Notre Dame (12-0, AT LARGE) vs. #2 Alabama (12-1, SEC Champions)


    Predictions based on:
    - Rutgers winning out, including a home win over Louisville
    - Stanford winning its final two, including a home win over UCLA for Pac-12 title
    - The Sugar opting for Johnny “Football” and Texas A&M to replace SEC Champion Alabama’s spot in the Sugar Bowl over two-loss LSU, two-loss Florida (coming off a road loss to FSU), two- to three-loss South Carolina (likely coming off a road loss to Clemson), and a Georgia team coming off a loss to Alabama in the the SECCG
    - The Fiesta opting for Oregon over one- or two-loss Clemson
    - The Sugar opting for two-loss Oklahoma of the Big 12 to face A&M, formerly of the Big 12. Texas would not likely be an option, coming off its third loss of the season against Kansas State.

    • bullet says:

      The Big 12 is wide open. KSU, OU, UT and Okie St. all could win it now.
      If KSU beats UT they win. If UT beats KSU and OU wins out, OU wins. If UT beats KSU and OU loses to Okie St. and/or TCU then it gets complicated. It could be a 4 way tie, a two way tie involving KSU and either OU/UT or OSU (KSU would win vs. OU/OSU, UT wins vs. KSU), or a 3 way tie with KSU and two of UT/OU/OSU.

  43. zeek says:

    RT @insidemdsports: Rutgers is getting the most play but multiple sources maintain GT is also vying for a Big10 spot

    Frank, this is where Dennis Dodd’s article actually has a useful line: ” I talked to a Big Ten AD less than two years who told me the league presidents were impressed with Georgia Tech and Maryland before settling on Nebraska.”

    Ga Tech just got its AAU as well, so that’s worth noting.

    That line stuck out to me when I first read Dodd’s article. Why would an AD tell him explicitly that they really liked those two schools in particular in the ACC? It might not mean anything given that it’s a two year old source, but it’s something.

    • Peter says:

      Georgia Tech would meet academic requirements without the AAU designation. It’s one of the strongest research schools in the entire world and everyone knows this. I can’t imagine any academic pushback from the presidents if Georgia Tech was raised as a candidate. Georgia Tech would obviously L-O-V-E to work with Northwestern, Chicago, Michigan & Wisconsin.

      I’m not sure how much money they add versus Rutgers (much less than Rutgers with Fox leveraging YES to be sure). The Atlanta media market is huge and Georgia is another large state with potential subscriber bumps and a lot of football fans. That said, SEC country.

      • zeek says:

        Yeah, the SEC thing is the main reason why I could see this not happening.

        The Mid-Atlantic from North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, and New Jersey; that region is ripe for the plucking. Establishing the presence there is really where the value is in all of this.

        • mushroomgod says:

          Although GT is a great school, it is really second fiddle in it’s own state…..and by a long shot. Taking GT over Rutgers would be a shocking development, imo.

          • Michael in Raleigh says:

            Question for bullet or someone else who lives or has lived in Atlanta:

            How does GT compare in popularity with schools outside the state, such as Auburn, Alabama, Tennessee, or Clemson? Are they a clear, albeit distant, second to UGA, or are they behind others who aren’t even in Georgia?

          • bullet says:

            Atlanta is a magnet for the whole southeast. I would guess there are more Clemson and Auburn fans here than GT, but it would be close. GT only has about 20k students and it was 12k not that long ago. GT is one of the nation’s top engineering schools and draws well from outside Georgia. Also its graduates quite commonly go to work outside Georgia. They really have support more like a private school. I’ve been to a couple of Georgia/Georgia Tech games here in Atlanta as well as a number of Texas/Rice games in Houston and it has a similar feel. The Georgia/GT games in Atlanta were probably 40% or more Georgia fans in GT’s home stadium.

          • Brian says:


            I’d counter that GT has a lot of local fans with no ties to GT, too. Some people just get sick of all the UGA fans so they root for GT instead.

            I’d say it goes:
            1. UGA
            2. big gap
            3. GT
            4. Other southern schools (AU, TN, FSU, etc)

            But it is close.

            The Auburn Alumni Club claims 22,000 members in the ATL area. By comparison, GT has about 125,000 living alumni total.

    • Nemo says:

      I know a lot of press has gone to Rutgers, but as a Maryland fan, I’d heard the GT was urging MD to jump the last time the B1G was looking. The Atlanta market is large and is SEC territory with great athletes for recruiting in the state of Georgia. They may not make the cut this go around, but UVA/GT or UNC/GT would be huge. The B1G footprint would be even larger.

    • Richard says:

      I actually don’t see why the B10 can’t add both Rutgers & GTech (along with UMD). That leaves #16 for ND if they want to come along. If FSU & Clemson bolt, the ACC would be on its death bed, and UNC & UVa could be gotten. That still leaves a spot for ND (or Duke, or Miami). Really, all 3.

      Big20, here we come!

  44. GreatLakeState says:

    Has anyone mentioned that Mr. UnderArmour just sold 65 million dollars worth of his stock? For you Ohio state fans, allow me to connect the dots.

    • zeek says:

      Yeah, that’s been tied to this story as one of the “coincidental” events. He also listed the sale as being for “charitable purposes”…

      Similar to the story last week about Fox buying a stake in YES that’s now being tied into this speculation re: Rutgers.

  45. GreatLakeState says:

    I agree with Zeek, I think Rutgers may be a smoke screen for another school.

    • zeek says:

      I mentioned it on the previous thread that it sounds similar to how we launched the grab for Nebraska. We announced a spot open and Missouri jumped first, but we ended up with Nebraska.

      Now this, think about it the same way. By announcing that we’re going directly after Maryland that leaves spot #14 open (similar to spot #12). All of the speculation is being filled by whispers about Rutgers but there’s nothing definitive yet.

      It doesn’t mean we may not end up with Maryland/Rutgers. But there’s not much other than some whispers that we prefer Rutgers for the #14 slot.

      That Dodd quote is a bit too perfect. How did we like Ga Tech/Maryland so much 2 years ago and went for Nebraska, and now we’re not going for Ga Tech/Maryland again.

      Unless enough has changed to make Rutgers a better choice…

      • Peter says:

        The missing piece with Rutgers is the Fox-YES angle. If that’s actually what’s up, Rutgers is by far the most valuable expansion candidate in the country not named Texas. The BOWASH corridor has a ton of TV sets and (very important for advertisers) a ton of money.

        • zeek says:

          Yeah, the Fox/YES angle is really what changes a lot from the past. If Fox is pushing this hard for a presence along the coast, then they’ll undoubtably want BTN to follow in that path…

      • Brian says:


        GT will always have the problems of being geographically isolated and not the top CFB dog in their own city. RU can leverage PSU in ways the GT can’t with anyone. More importantly, I don’t think GT wants out of the ACC and into the B10.

        • Richard says:

          “More importantly, I don’t think GT wants out of the ACC and into the B10.”

          Unless the ACC collapses (which is almost certain if FSU & Clemson bolt for the B12).

          Really, it all comes down to the ‘Noles & B12 (as has been the case for a while now).

          GTech also wouldn’t be geographically isolated if UNC, Duke, UVa, and Miami were also added.

          • Brian says:


            Atlanta is almost 400 miles away from the closest of those schools. It’s about 50 miles further than PSU is from OSU.

        • zeek says:

          There are a lot of rumors that Ga Tech is pushing all of this. I’m not sure how much of that is founded but who knows; I guess we find out in the next couple of days.

          • Brian says:


            “There are a lot of rumors that Ga Tech is pushing all of this. I’m not sure how much of that is founded but who knows; I guess we find out in the next couple of days.”

            Where are these rumors? I’m not hearing/seeing them in Atlanta.

          • bullet says:

            Sure aren’t hearing it from Tony Barnhart.

          • bullet says:

            The rumours are on message boards all over, but I agree, there isn’t much talk in Atlanta.

          • Brian says:


            If I hear something from Tony or Wes Durham, then I’ll start to listen. Nothing in college sports in Atlanta happens without them knowing about it.

      • charlie says:

        so, Gene Smith did a guest lecture in one of my friend’s classes this passed week. someone in the class asked him which schools the B1G was looking at for expansion. his response was, “well, obviously, I can’t tell you directly, but let’s pretend we’re talking about a hypothetical conference located in the Midwest who was looking at expanding…which schools do you think would be good?” after all the obvious ones were called out: Texas, Notre Dame, ect, he said “alright guys, think harder”. someone said Rutgers which he drew a box around after he wrote it on the board. someone else said Maryland, which also got a box drawn around it. eventually, someone said Georgia Tech which got 3 boxes drawn around it and a bunch of exclamation marks after. we’re both MBA students at Ohio State, he was in a grad-level strategy M&A class. just something to think about…

        • zeek says:

          Sounds like Dennis Dodd spoke to Gene Smith when he got that information about Georgia Tech and Maryland if all of this is true.

          Either that or two ADs think that Georgia Tech is a primary choice.

          Your story matches what Dodd heard directly.

        • M says:

          You know expansion is getting serious when we start seeing stuff like this: third hand information from a guy he knows talking to someone else who probably has a seat at the table but certainly isn’t a primary decision maker. Plus, how do we know he wasn’t talking about the MAC?

          (Seriously, go find this guy and see what else Smith said in that class)

        • Eric says:

          If it’s really Georgia Tech (and maybe even if it’s not), my days of automatically rooting for Big Ten teams might be over (we’ll see, I don’t know how I feel with the actual games). It’s not that I have any issues with any of the schools themselves and this isn’t out of anger, but the conference will have expanded to the point I just won’t care how it looks. It won’t be a Midwestern conference or even a northern conference and thus no regional pride will be in overall conference comparisons. I’ll still go for the conference when it effects Ohio State and in things like the Big Ten/ACC challenge, but I think I’ll be rooting for Ohio/Midwest teams over non-Midwest Big Ten teams (with the possible exception of Penn State).

          • Brian says:


            I guess that’s a luxury midwestern B10 fans have. Some of us living elsewhere find it difficult to worry about regional pride in FB. To me it’s just about the schools and the teams, not the states.

    • wmtiger says:

      Getting the BTN onto NYC’s basic cable is Delaney’s prime objective, which is why Rutgers is likely to land here after Maryland. Delaney hopes that Fox will help the BTN get on to NYC’s/NJ’s basic cable by combining the YES Network (recently bought by Fox) with the BTN as a package…

      If Delaney can get the BTN onto NJ & NYC’s basic cable/satellite, Rutgers would be a very impressive addition.

    • frug says:

      I’m not sure than Rutgers is a smokescreen as much as a backup plan. Since Maryland wouldn’t join until 2014 the Big 10 has no reason to rush in announcing team 14, so they could just hang back and see if they can pry away a more valuable asset than Rutgers.

    • Brian says:


      “I agree with Zeek, I think Rutgers may be a smoke screen for another school.”

      RU fans would be crushed.

      • frug says:

        I wouldn’t feel to bad for them though. If they did a better job supporting their teams the Big 10 or ACC would have grabbed them already.

      • bullet says:

        I have seen some rumours that Georgia Tech has applied to the Big 10. Don’t know that I believe that.

        • bullet says:

          See Zeek’s above now. GT stuff is floating around.

          • zeek says:

            It’s just really eating at me that a Big Ten AD would tell Dennis Dodd that they loved Ga Tech and Maryland within the past two years before settling on Nebraska.

            Maybe enough has changed with Rutgers’ TV situation in that the Big Ten would get enough households in New Jersey to make it work, but it’s just so weird.

            Yeah, the Ga Tech rumors are to the effect that Ga Tech has been pushing for this whole thing but that the Big Ten wants Maryland to sign the dotted line first. Naturally, Maryland has to be #13 for there to be a #14. This can’t go in reverse, so it makes sense in that respect.

        • Brian says:

          Where? I haven’t seen/heard anything locally.

          • zeek says:

            I’m not sure we’re going to hear anything out of Atlanta on this. Ga Tech doesn’t even have an AD right now in place? It’d have to be handled entirely by the president and chair of the board, so regardless of Ga Tech’s involvement, we probably won’t get any legitimate information unless they’re actually going to hold a vote at some point.

          • Brian says:


            All sorts of people with connections to MD have the story. You don’t think anyone has connections at GT just because the AD left for Clemson? It’s not like they don’t have an interim AD, and sources often aren’t the top dog.

  46. wmtiger says:

    The B10 is a brand, Delaney wants his brand to be as profitable, popular and powerful as possible. B10 is competing against the SEC, ACC, Big XII for power and dollars. Capturing the NYC/NJ, Philly, Baltimore & DC markets would give the B10 a ton of leverage when the B10 puts its media rights on the open market.

  47. GreatLakeState says:

    You do have to wonder if Delany doesn’t have a master plan for 16 that is going to unfold over the next couple weeks. If so, you Georgia Tech would make the more logical choice since, let’s face it, Rutgers is always going to be there, and a Georgia Tech pick would likely send Florida State and perhaps Clemson packing. This could open up the possibility of ND, UNC/Duke or Virginia. Here’s another post concerning the Georgia Tech whispers.

  48. B1GRED says:

    Is this anything? It was reported in local paper this week that the Nebraska/Miami series scheduled for 2014 and 2015 may be in jeopardy. No reason was given.

  49. Nick in South Bend says:

    Some people need to look beyond just the next addition. There is genuine fire under the smoke for Maryland. There is no such fire under the smoke for Rutgers (outside of some logical sense). If Maryland is added to the Big Ten, and I think they will be, my guess is that Delaney is forward looking enough to realize that adding Georgia Tech is not the long term answer. It is adding UVA, UNC, Duke etc…

    If the exit fee is lowered for Maryland, which is all but certain to be lowered (as virtually all exit fees have been) in court, then FSU, GT and Clemson will get a much itchier trigger finger. This would cause further panic in the conference. This is the exact same strategy that Delany, and Slive, deployed while snatching Nebraska and Texas A&M…and Scott narrowly missed on with Texas. The strategy works. Find the “weak sister” conference (so far the B12, Big East and ACC), find a patsy school (Missouri, Rutgers) and string them along long enough to get what you want. It worked well over the last few years, and, with a bit of luck, may work perfectly this time.

    Most importantly, I think it has become fairly clear that Slive and Delany have at least a tacit agreement on how the map is to be carved up. I would actually argue that the two of them and Scott have much more than a tacit agreement on these matters. Think about it…only UVA, UNC, Texas and Notre Dame would provide for even a semblance of conflict between Slive and Delany and Scott. And, quite frankly, all those schools would just make their own choice (a choice that is pretty obvious for each, in my opinion).

    The move that is a few paces ahead of just adding Maryland is striking at the heart of the ACC, and going for the states of VA and NC. My guess is that the SEC and B12 will gladly aid in the swift destruction of the ACC as a viable football conference. The ACC will add Rutgers and UConn, but the damage will be done, and the ACC will simply be a re-branded Big East of yesteryear.

    To be clear, this is not about shutting conferences down…it is about taking the assets from them that you want. Obviously the three best conferences want the Mid Atlantic region, the NYC area and Texas. I think they will get them.

    • zeek says:

      All of this is fair and correct.

      But Texas and ND didn’t want to come.

      Why would UNC be much more willing than either of them when it gets to rule the roost in the ACC along with its group of cronies (UVa, Duke, NC State, Wake Forest).

      Delany may have a wishlist that reads 1) UNC, 2) UVa, 3) Maryland, etc., but that doesn’t mean it’s realistic.

      This move is happening because ND seems to be permanently off the board.

      If UNC and UVa say no at this time, then he has to pull the trigger on 14 with Rutgers or Georgia Tech and then he can just let the conference wait until UNC and/or UVa are ready to be #15-16.

      • Nick in South Bend says:

        I do not disagree with anything you said, particularly the whole “move on from Notre Dame” aspect. The best laid plans do not always come out the way they are designed, and this situation is no different. I just happen to think the goal at this point, for the SEC and Big Ten, is to break into the VA/NC area. I think it will happen if the whole southern edge of the conference (the viable football portion) gets restless enough to leave.

        One thing that has become proves through conference re-alignment is that a stong football program (or a strong football conference) is what is best for a basketball school. The economic have changed.

        Delany does not need everything on his wish list (nor does Slive, especially now that he is in Texas) but I would be surprised if the Big Ten ends up wtih Maryland and Rutgers out of this deal…Maryland is the domino that will cause chaos and consternation within the ACC and Delany would only need UVA to hit an absolute home run. Again, far from a certainty, but the plan is laid as best it could be.

        My honest guess is that UVA is the real target (in addition to Maryland, which is legit). They may say no, but I think both Slive and Delany hope they say yes.

        • zeek says:

          Yeah, like I say below though this is a long-term game.

          UVa might be more willing to come along the next time around. You can put the pieces in motion now though.

          Think about how long we sat around at 11 with people wondering every couple of years whether we were going to expand.

        • michael says:

          Why this talk of UVa?

          Good school, great tradition, strong undergrad programs, beautiful campus, but far from a heavyweight research institution. In fact it would be at the bottom of the BIG (well above NE, but …)

          Meybe it gets some traction in the DC area, but it is hard to see UVa as a primary target.

          • Nick in South Bend says:

            First, let me say I am not opposed to Rutgers joining.

            To answer the question, in my opinion at least, UVA is a primary target. First, The school is immensely politically powerful, so getting on basic cable throughout the entire state is likely. Second, the school is in a high growth area of the country: the DC corridor. Third, this political power comes through in getting federal research grants. Finally, there would be absolutely no president of any Big Ten University that would vote against UVA on academic, research or prestige grounds.

            Of course, the “next level” play in adding UVA is that it may give you something of a leg up on grabbing UNC. I would defer to others on this, but I suspect that UVA being home in a conference would make it more appealing to UNC.

          • Brian says:


            “Why this talk of UVa?”


            1. AAU school
            2. Would add a growing, populous state to the footprint
            3. Partners well with MD
            4. Could be a bridge to also adding UNC (same reasons but also better revenue sports)

          • greg says:

            Virginia $4.7B endowment, the 2nd or 3rd largest public school endowment, to go with the other points mentioned.

          • michael says:

            UVa does OK in research money but is still at the bottom of the BIG. I can see the argument that it could be a bridge to UNC, but that depends on the idea that the ACC is shattered if MD goes. Not a bet I would place given the core of the NC schools.

            I agree completely that UVa would be welcomed by BIG presidents. There is no question it is highly respected as an institution.

            For speculation, suppose the BIG gets UVa and then UNC. That gives the DC area, which is a good prize (but also costs two expansion slots), but …. oh ….thar she blows! (ND).

            Methinks this all depends on Delany being Captain Ahab. Even if UVa and UNC came to pass, does that destroy the ACC? What’s left of the ACC still looks more similar (institutionally) to ND than the BIG.

            OTOH, maybe ….

          • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

            I would certainly chuckle if ND was left with a home consisting of:

            Notre Dame
            Wake Forest
            Boston College
            UConn ?
            Louisville ?
            Cincinnati ?

          • JayDevil says:

            Nick in Southbend is on the right track. Take a look at the electoral college map– the B1G adds 24 points with Maryland and Rutgers. They also get a significant foot in the door at the highest seats of power– DC and NYC. You also add two highly productive research universities; both are AAU. Perhaps most importantly– they both ‘own’ their state. There are no little brothers to consider in this equation.

            It’s hard to imagine two universities the B1G could realistically add that would give them more academic and political capital.

      • GreatLakeState says:

        He’s clearly forcing them back on the board. I don’t think it’s his primary goal, but it’s certainly a residual plot in this Game of Thrones.

        • zeek says:

          It’s a long-term game though.

          The difference in payouts right now is a couple million. In a decade, a 14-team Big Ten might be getting $15M more per school per year.

          Right now, it might be prudent to get to 14 and then wait for the economic differences to become much more staggering.

          • GreatLakeState says:

            Wonder if Delany/Fox is eyeing a day in the not-so-distant future when BTN takes on the whole slate. A decade is a lifetime in this accelerated technological landscape.

      • ccrider55 says:

        Texas would have come, tried to come…as long as they set the terms and got to run things.

      • frug says:

        This move is happening because ND seems to be permanently off the board.

        More likely because they realize that ND can’t be the next move. If the ACC collapses then ND is right back in play.

  50. michael says:

    Rutgers partisan here.

    Rutgers made the application two years ago and if the BIG is ready, it is already a done deal. I understood that part of the application included agreement to schedule a home game at the Meadowlands. There is no love lost on the Big East and there is no longer any institution in teh Big East that might be described as a peer. Rejection by the BIG now might very well result in Rutgers going to the ACC. Boise State must feel like the kid that shows up just after the party ended.

    Maryland is a great choice, but Rutger is not the red headed stepchild (see what I did there?) that happens to live in the right spot. My previous comments (some time ago) make the argument that after NE, the presidents will want peer academic institutions as much as good football. Both MD and RU are just like the big land grant institutions that dominate the BIG. They are also long-time AAU members and rank roughly in the middle of the BIG in research (AWRU US: MD 28, RU 40). They will more than pull their weight in the CIC. RU’s pending merger with UMDNJ adds a medical school and another big chunk of research money.

    GaTech is also a fine institution and recent AAU member, but Atlanta is not the Northeast corridor. BIG access to NJ, NYC to some degree and greater penetration in Philadelphia, along with DC metro in one fell swoop makes this a slam dunk. High per capita income and strong growth in technology is a strong long term demographic play. As others have mentioned, there is a good amount of high school football and basketball talent. Althelic departments with money may well result in much stronger programs than those seen recently.

    BTW, RU football is not bad. I expect it will be middle of the pack in the BIG. Don’t sleep on RU basketball, though. It is getting better fast and if the HS talent stays home, watch out.

    • mushroomgod says:

      Michael, Rutgers just can’t get no respect, in the words of an OSU football player……

      I’m with you….I subscribe to the “Rutgers as sleeping giant” school of thought, mainly because of the excellent high school football played in NJ. Unfortunately, we’re in the minority….Rutgers has a big-time image problem. BIG red-headed stepson issues……….

      Not to say there aren’t issues…..Rutgers would have to improve markedly in the minor sports….and you’ve got more than your share of academic crazies….But I think it WLL happen, as Delaney is a NJ guy and wants some NY/NJ exposure, plus the U presidents would value the academics…..

      • michael says:

        Did not know Delaney was from NJ.

        re: Minor sports
        Yes, this is a significant issue and the investment in football has had a big impact on the minor sports. I would think that part of the agreement to join the BIG will require a number of the now club level sports to be raised back up. Of course, there will be money to do exactly that.

        As for the ‘academic crazies’ I will step up to defend them. The university has taken a series of budget hits that have had real impact even as the athletic department (read football) has been spared after significant increases in their budget. This is independently of the stadium investments.

        On the other hand, investment in RU football makes sense because of the market — it’s just 35 miles from the Empire State Bldg. It is probably the only school (that is not already an established power and money maker) that can expect a return on investment in football.

        If RU joins the BIG, it would be ironic if the investment in football was the piece that enabled the invitation. The payoff for academics would be significant with membership in the CIC.

        I am biased, but doing my best to put on an objective hat it is hard to see how RU to the BIG is marginal. With MD the BIG has access to the most densly populated and wealthiest region in the country.

        • zeek says:

          It’s not marginal in the least.

          If this does happen, then Delany is making a bet that the Big Ten’s brand and money can help to transform Rutgers and Maryland into what all that potential implies is possible.

          Delany has spent years working on this.

          We’re all just expansion “geeks” as it were. If this happens, then Delany believes that Rutgers and Maryland in 2030 will look like profitable ADs that will have proven to be worthwhile additions.

          The comparison of those two schools to Arizona and Arizona State or a school like South Carolina is most appropriate (although neither is in quite the college hotbed that SC is in).

  51. GreatLakeState says:

    “Under Armour founder and Maryland uber-booster Kevin Plank is “100 percent” behind the Terrapins moving from the ACC to the Big Ten, a regent told ESPN on Sunday.”

    The fact that he just cashed in 65 million in stock was too big a coincidence to ignore.

  52. B1G Jeff says:

    Why not Rutgers and UMaryland?

    From a football standpoint: The B1G already has 4 Kings and several Princes. I’d presume (sanctions aside) that most years into the future, at worst, we’ll be one of the 3 best football conferences. Through one of our four Kings (and an occasional Prince) we’ll, by virtue of an undefeated season, get our share of shots at the NCC. Why dilute the chances of that happening unless a true game changer came along (which isn’t happening: UT, ND and USC aren’t walking through that door)? How much ‘better’ of a conference does one need to be than having four Kings, at least three of which come from very fertile recruiting ground? Perhaps adding Rutgers and UMD isn’t meant to be primarily a desire to improve from a competitive standpoint at the top of the ticket… As an aside, I’d rather we spent our time improving our on-field performance than diluting the pool at the top. Getting large fertile recruiting markets with underperforming east cost universities fits that bill.

    From an academic standpoint: Both are AAU, large land grant, flagship universities, sufficiently Northern, culturally compatible and contiguous with the current B1G footprint that would assist the CIC in growing from $7B to significantly more. Perfect fit. Any questions?

    From a financial standpoint: One of the stated goals of expansion was to address the next decades’ population growth trends (i.e. secure the growth of the BTN). This stabilizes Pennsylvania by giving PSU its long desired partners, and gives the most realistic approach to reaching the Eastern corridor from Philly to NY. As previously noted by others, with Fox as our partner facilitating our entry into the NY market, guaranteed cable buys are at least as important as stadium size or ability to ‘deliver fan base’.

    Rutgers and UM accomplish the above now, all the while destabilizing the ACC (take that ND) enough for some future combination consideration of UNC/UVa/G Tech. I’d respectfully suggest that sounds like the work of a University President (hat tip, Frank).

    • B1G Jeff says:

      And on the financial side, things aren’t revenue neutral. It’s as close to a force multiplier that’s still out there, and the timing is perfect leading into renegotiations soon (regarding FTT’s adage about 1+1 must equal more than 2. I just hope we’ll prove in time that good business means good on the field performance.

    • mushroomgod says:

      Agree with all of this Jeff……4 “Kings”/14 is enough…..and there are plenty of good HS players in MD and NJ….you left out academics…..Rutgers’ academics make it more attractive to the presidents than MO or Kansas, for example……they went along with NEB ($), but I don’t think they want another school that small or with that academic standing—that’s why I am somewahy concerned about the GT rumors–I sure hope they don’t go that route.

  53. Wes Haggard says:

    Just a guess, but Slive and Delaney may compromise so both conferences wind up with an easier to manage schedule of sixteen teams that leave both conferences winners.

    Rutgers, UVA, Georgia Tech and Maryland to B1G.

    Virginia Tech and UNC to SEC.

    Lots of smoke out there as you guys have pointed out. Georgia Tech may be the catalyst pin. Early communication from the B1G may have been the real reason they pulled away from the foursome that appeared headed to the Big Twelve. And the Big 12 could still come out winners and go to sixteen teams with FSU, Clemson, NC State and ? Pitt, ? Louisville?

    • Peter says:

      UNC will never join the SEC. It simply will not happen for academic and cultural reasons.

      • Wes Haggard says:

        Peter, you sound just as positive as all the past posters on this site were that emphatically swore that Texas A&M would NEVER join the SEC. We all know how that turned out.

        • Peter says:

          I can’t speak to people who thought Texas A&M wouldn’t join the SEC (I can’t see what the bar would have been), but UNC to the SEC is more like Texas to the SEC. There are all kinds of serious hard obstacles and dislike there.

          UNC cares principally about academics and basketball. The SEC, from UNC’s perspective, has neither. And that’s just the start. UNC both dislikes and disrespects the SEC.

          • bamatab says:

            That’s funny because back during this past summer’s FSU/Clemson to the Big 12 ordeal I went to a few of the UNC sites and the vast majority of the posters there preferred (if the ACC was being raided) the SEC over any of the other conferences including the B1G. They stated that they more closely identified with the southern schools like UGA, UF, USCe, UT & UK as opposed to the northern schools of the B1G (they view themselves culturally as a southern school). Plus they stated that they did not like the idea of having to travel to the B1G schools for games. They preferred to travel to the SEC eastern schools.

            Now I’m not saying that the people in charge of making that decision would choose the SEC over the B1G, but the vast majority of the fans/alumni that frequent their message boards definitely preferred, and more closely identified themselves culturally with the SEC east schools.

          • zeek says:

            UNC most likely wants to stay with both Duke and NC State. It’s hard to see how they achieve both of those objectives without just sticking it out in the ACC. The Big Ten and SEC aren’t running charities, so neither is going to be willing to take a big clump of North Carolina based schools just to appease them.

            Va Tech and UVa are much more likely to be split up if that ends up occurring.

          • bamatab says:

            I just went to check out one of the UNC forums to see if the fans on that site were still favoring the SEC over the B1G is the ACC starts falling apart (they definitely would prefer staying in the ACC as long as multiple schools don’t start leaving), and they are. Here is a link to the thread about UMD going to the B1G:

            The talk about which conference UNC should join starts on page 5 of the thread, and most of the people commenting are saying the SEC for the same reasons as they were during this past summer (cultural identity, distance, ect.). There is only one person stating that UNC should go to the B1G.

            Now again I’m not saying that the PTB at UNC would choose the SEC over the B1G, but I’m pretty sure the majority of their fanbase would.

          • frug says:


            Keep in mind these are the sort fans who think Maryland will actually pay the full $50 million exit fee and Penn St. and St. Johns will be the Terps replacement in the ACC…

            But yeah, I see your point.

          • @bama: Wow, there is some serious delusion in that thread. I especially enjoyed the one guy calling for MSU and PSU to the ACC. Also assuming PSU would like to revisit the rivalry with Pitt, when that’s been debunked countless times at this point. Thinking Cincinnati will *ever* be in the BigTen. Gotta love message boards.

          • @Bama: Also, I could be wrong (since I kind of skimmed), but it looked like there might’ve been more than one guy in favor of the BigTen. I’m in no way surprised though that UNC fans would be more in favor of the SEC than the BigTen… it’s a southern state, that makes sense.

          • bamatab says:

            @manifestodeluxe – The only one I see stating they should go to the B1G is bbmack (maybe I’m missing the other?).

            You’d be suprised at the other ACC boards that are grasping at the PSU to ACC straw. I was reading a VT board and they were also trying to hold on to the chance that PSU could go to the ACC. They don’t seem to understand the concept of GOR, or the fact that PSU (or any school for that matter) would make a heck of a lot more money in the B1G (or SEC) than they would in the ACC.

          • @bama: I could be wrong… maybe it was the same guy posting a few times. Personally I don’t think anyone of the NC schools are realistically on the table, but who knows.

            The PSU->ACC line of reasoning seems about as logical as Frank’s fascination with Miami->BigTen only makes even less sense. Despite PSU’s recent troubles, I thought they’ve fit in the BigTen quite well. Pennsylvania and Ohio had a long-running HS all-star game (Big33) that just ended, and is being swapped to Penn-v-Maryland I think. If UMD came on board to the BigTen, why would PSU suddenly go “oh, well, we’ve been bitching for more eastern teams since we joined, but now that we’re getting what we’ve always wanted we’re going to move to the ACC.”

      • Brian #2 says:

        You are clueless. UNC absolutely has a Southern culture. It is hysterical seeing Big Ten fans trying to find ways to plug a thoroughly Southern university like UNC into a Midwestern conference.

    • Richard says:

      UNC isn’t joining a conference with none of its 3 big traditional rivals (UVa, NCSU, and Duke).

      Hard to see the SEC being able to take more than one of them, while the B10 could take 2 (UVa + Duke) along with UNC.

      • Brian #2 says:

        UNC basketball is the university’s premier program and it is a national program that doesn’t need to cling to regional rivalries for relevance.

        If UNC joined the SEC this year, the UNC-Kentucky basketball rivalry would immediately be the best basketball rivalry in the country.

  54. John O says:

    Maryland’s record vs Big Ten:

    Date Opponent (record) Result Score Site
    12/29/2006 vs. Purdue (8-6) W 24 7 @ Orlando, FL
    10/2/1993 vs. Penn State (10-2) L 7 70
    9/29/1990 @ Michigan (9-3) L 17 45
    9/30/1989 @ Michigan (10-2) L 21 41
    9/28/1985 @ Michigan (10-1-1) L 0 20
    12/22/1977 vs. Minnesota (7-5) W 17 7 @ Birmingham, AL
    11/9/1935 vs. Indiana (4-3-1) L 7 13 @ Baltimore, MD
    11/17/1934 vs. Indiana (3-3-2) L 14 17
    10/9/1926 @ Chicago (2-6) L 0 21

    9/30/1989 @ Michigan (10-2) L 21 41
    9/28/1985 @ Michigan (10-1-1) L 0 20
    12/22/1977 vs. Minnesota (7-5) W 17 7 @ Birmingham, AL
    11/9/1935 vs. Indiana (4-3-1) L 7 13 @ Baltimore, MD
    11/17/1934 vs. Indiana (3-3-2) L 14 17
    10/9/1926 @ Chicago (2-6) L 0 21

    And Rutger’s:

    Date Opponent (record) Result Score Site
    9/9/2006 vs. Illinois (2-10) W 33 0
    9/3/2005 @ Illinois (2-9) L 30 33
    9/4/2004 vs. Michigan State (5-7) W 19 14
    9/6/2003 @ Michigan State (8-5) L 28 44
    9/23/1995 vs. Penn State (9-3) L 34 59 @ East Rutherford, NJ
    9/24/1994 @ Penn State (12-0) L 27 55
    9/25/1993 @ Penn State (10-2) L 7 31
    9/21/1991 vs. Northwestern (3-8) W 22 18
    9/28/1991 @ Michigan State (3-8) W 14 7
    9/29/1990 vs. Michigan State (8-3-1) L 10 34 @ East Rutherford, NJ
    9/23/1989 @ Northwestern (0-11) W 38 27
    9/10/1988 @ Michigan State (6-5-1) W 17 13


    • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

      Don’t forget Maryland is 1-35-1 all time vs PSU.

    • John O keep in mind that these are long term decisions and MD would need to grow on the football front. Step one would be getting better cash flow in to the AD, increased attendance due to match ups and then expansion to the stadium. This may take a decade but again these are long term deals.

      • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

        I don’t anyone was putting up the data as a deterrent for membership.

      • zeek says:

        What we “hope” happens is that by 2025-2030 both of them are running profitable athletics departments and seeing crowd averages in the mid-55k range.

        I don’t think we need Maryland to really turn into Oregon East but it needs to be running a solid program.

        There’s going to be more at stake in terms of the performance of those two schools than any of the others given that we need them to deliver their markets for the BTN.

        • mushroomgod says:

          I know this is all about football, but MD does have 38 NCs in all, plus excellent facilities….that new 18000 basketball arena for example.

          Overall athletic success and facilities are big issues for Rutgers.

          • zeek says:

            Yes. Maryland has consistently competed well in its top non-revenue sports.

            Rutgers is going to be the questionmark on that front.

            Aren’t all 12 of the Big Ten programs currently top 50 in the Director’s Cup the past couple years?

            Maryland fits that naturally, but Rutgers isn’t even in the top 100, so there’s going to be a ton of work to be done on their part.

            Virginia Tech is the best model for Rutgers in that they’ve managed to start to turn that around (although Va Tech still hasn’t won any NCs).

          • B1G Jeff says:

            Yep. For 2011-2012, Iowa was the lowest performing B1G school at #48. (Sorry, Greg)

      • John O says:

        Agreed that this is for the long term. I just meant to point out the scale of the adjustment required of their respective fan bases. And for the current B1G members for that matter.

  55. Brian says:

    Bowl eligibility:

    ACC – 6
    BE – 4
    B10 – 5
    B12 – 7
    P12 – 8
    SEC – 8
    Other – 26

    Total – 64 (70)

    Ineligible – 45 (54)

    5-5: WV, Baylor

    5-6: WF, VT, MSU, PU, Marshall, SMU, Rice, CMU, MO, MS, Troy

    4-6: UConn, Pitt

  56. ccrider55 says:

    I love the Steeler bumble bee uniforms.

    • Michael in Raleigh says:

      Throwback unis. Sheesh.

      I think the Carolina Panthers (founded in 1995) should make some “throwback” uniforms that they wore “from 1959-1970.” Maybe have a contest where people submit their ideas from an MS Paint fail, just for good times. Just think of all the great new ugly “old” uniforms that could be created for all the newer franchises/teams that have rebranded (Jaguars, Texans, Titans, Ravens, Panthers). Same for teams new to FBS (USF, UConn, Boise, etc.)

  57. 8-team Playoffs Now says:

    If the B1G is adding MD and Rutgers for markets, why on earth would they not look long and hard at FSU (or to a lesser extent Miami instead?)

    The usual types who said X can’t happen in expansion because of… (and then it did happen) will dismissively say FSU is not AAU, but they are academically on par with Nebraska. They would bring a badly needed Top Ten reputation in football to an expansion group that is usually unranked. Florida is full of Midwesterners and Northeasterners, and not just retirees, and the trend is continued growth over the long term. Other than ND or Texas, FSU is easily the most valuable target left.

    GT is a shaky addition on some grounds, but if demographics is destiny, then like Atlanta it is a hub for the B1G’s best potential growth. Not only a gateway to Florida, but near the heart of a very large and growing group of ‘Halfbacks’ (those from the Midwest and Northeast that moved/retired to Florida but then flipped to GA, TN, and the Carolinas for more moderate weather, 4 seasons, and a lower cost of living.

    Of course UNC and UVA are natural extensions for the B1G. Jim Delany is a UNC alum, they are perfect academic fits, and geographic stepping stones.

    Put that together and the B1G has solid coverage in the north and east, covering well over the majority of the country’s population. That means 18 schools, but an easy plug-n-play of a 6 eastern team pod. Maximum value and perhaps then the most attractive remaining conference for Notre Dame.

    Taking FSU also would cut off one of the most lucrative growth paths for the B12. If they can’t then lure ND then the conference probably at some point either merges or partners with the P12 or SEC, or splits between the two. Going from 5 power conferences to 3 increases the B1G’s power and revenue. In fact we might end up with an expanded B1G merging with the P12 and just 2 megaconferences. At 2 or 3 the playoff agreement probably gets ripped up and each conference runs its own mini-playoff, keeping all the revenue to themselves with the champs meeting in a 2 or 4 game finale.

    Of course this could all end at 14 with just MD and Rutgers being added. But I doubt it and am willing to bet that GT is the key to breaking up the ACC and that FSU will be wooed. Already there are rumors that UVA is reaching out to the B1G, just as there were previous rumors of them talking months ago.

    So, um, tell us again how the ACC is a lot stronger and tighter than us idiots thought a few months ago….

    • 8-team Playoffs Now says:

      Thesis would also hold true if demographics are destiny…. (really need a brief edit function)

    • zeek says:

      I think it might be because the Big Ten considered FSU and decided that it didn’t really work well for either side.

      FSU doesn’t seem like the kind of school that would just go and join the Big Ten from a long ways away.

      They’re a king, and they’re not really desperate for the money.

      But yeah, we’re likely to see the Big Ten and SEC make plays on the Mid-Atlantic. There’s too much population and money opportunities there to just ignore that region. It’s the obvious next step for both conferences if possible.

      • ccrider55 says:

        “FSU doesn’t seem like the kind of school that would just go and join the Big Ten from a long ways away”

        So they won’t be headed to the B12?

        • zeek says:

          Well, I think they’d join the Big 12 if it meant going with nearby schools. I just meant that the Big Ten isn’t going to take Florida State as an island.

          Georgia Tech is a bit different because Atlanta is basically as far away or closer from 8-9 of the schools as Rutgers is…

    • mushroomgod says:

      geography, plus no cultural and institutional fit.

    • Richard says:

      See my “Big20″ post above. I would be excited about FSU in the conference, but I don’t think their academics or even culture would be considered fits by the B10 Presidents. Miami is a better fit in those regards, even if they are not as good for football or TV money.

  58. Ben Dover says:

    The Big Ten Network has a footprint in New Jersey and Maryland. Go to the BTN web site and go to channel finder. Type in a Newark NJ or Maryland zip code. You will find BTN already there. You can get BTN in Waynesville, NC, on the western side of the state. Hell, you can get BTN in Canada. Why doesn’t Delany look north? LOL! Bringing in two lousy football programs is a bad idea. What’s Rutgers in basketball? A nobody. Maryland used to be good in basketball but now their a second-tier ACC team.

  59. B1G Jeff says:

    Thamel at SI is estimating UMCP + Rutgers is worth between $100M-$200M just on the basis of cable fees (without consideration on TV rights renegotiations). There’s your answer.

    • zeek says:

      That’s a maximum estimate.

      But yes, there’s a reasonable possibility that the BTN could see a bump of upwards to say $30 million per year from those two entering; that’d be way more than enough to justify the two.

      • B1G Jeff says:

        Zeek, if Delaney’s thoughts on population growth being a consideration, some variation of this had to occur. The B1G wasn’t going to allow the ACC to own the East coast. That would have been a subtraction from our current state. I recall reading here a while back that the B1G is the most watched/liked conference in the same corridor this move is seeking to solidify. ND + the ACC had to be perceived as a threat to not only growth prospects but our current advantage.

        • zeek says:

          I don’t disagree. I do think letting the ACC dominate the East Coast would be a big long-term mistake.

          The Big Ten needs access to the East Coast and Mid-Atlantic, and this is the best way to get that.

          And if down the road it leads us into Virginia and/or North Carolina; it’ll just be even more of a success.

      • maguro says:

        More like Jim Delaney’s ultimate fantasy than a maximum estimate. The idea that Rutgers has any chance of getting BTN a $1.25 monthly carriage fee in the NYC metro area is borderline delusional in my view.

        BTN’s estimated monthly carriage fee is 37 cents, and the idea that New Yorkers love Rutgers football so much that the local cable companies would triple that seems…unrealistic to say the least.

        NY and Bal-Wash are both pro sports markets first and foremost, so I would expect any additional cable subscribers BTN does pick up as a result of adding MD/Rutgers to pay less per subscriber than their current subscriber base in the midwest. I just don’t see NY or Blt area cable subscribers getting too upset if BTN isn’t in their basic cable package.

        • Richard says:

          That carriage fee is an average of rates inside the footprint (85 cents, I heard, though it could be more now) and outside the footprint (10 cents). Notice the giant difference.

          • maguro says:

            So my guess would be that carriage rights in NYC and Balt fall somewhere between .85 and .10. Closer to .10 than .85 in my opinion, but in any case nowhere near $1.25.

          • B1G Jeff says:

            Even without empirical evidence to support it, I’d be inclined to disagree. TPTB are not contorting themselves for a dime; that dime wouldn’t make expansion as attractive. The rest of the B1G isn’t going to take a pay cut to accommodate Rutgers.

            I’d expect the Fox connection to leverage the rumored purchase of YES and the subsequent coupling of YES and BTN to the max that can be negotiated.

    • zeek says:

      It’s still stunning that the NCAA is willing to turn a completely blind eye to one of the biggest academic scandals to ever hit college sports…

      • bullet says:

        If you read the linked article with the detail, the bb players quit attending the ficticious classes when a new academic counselor from University of Minnesota took the job. But football players had a different counselor and continued to take those classes.

  60. Eric says:

    I think Georgia Tech would be a huge mistake. On their own in a vacauum they are a great add on, but conferences get followings partly because they are regional institutions. When they chant SEC, it’s not just a conference pride thing, it’s a southern pride thing. The Big Ten might be OK going from Midwestern to northern, but going to nothing and there’s much less automatic reason to root for the conference.

    • I somewhat agree. I think GT and FSU and UNC and the like sound good, but I just don’t think it adds up. The SEC is strong somewhat because of it’s identity as *the* conference of the South. The Maryland/Rutgers move seems like the BigTen is trying to solidify its position as *the* conference of the North. But going after GT and the rest kind of obliterate that idea.

    • zeek says:

      Georgia Tech sort of makes me nervous. I’m not sure what the angle on them would be. They don’t really have the national brand status, and there’s no way that the BTN is getting local carriage in the heart of SEC country based on the sole addition of Georgia Tech…

      Yes, it has terrific academics and is more of a name than Rutgers, but it’s hard to think of how Georgia Tech fits the Big Ten’s future strategies outside of a longshot move to 16 or 18 schools.

      • frug says:

        16 isn’t really a long shot. In fact it is likely required if the Big Ten plans to land its While Whale (ND). Anything beyond that gets tricky if the NCAA continues to require divisional round robins in order to hold CCGs.

        • zeek says:

          Yeah but then the question is whether the Big Ten would view Georgia Tech as a #14 or a #16.

          Would it go for Maryland/Georgia Tech and then sit tight? Or would it view Georgia Tech as a later addition with UVa or ND or whoever…

      • Crpodhaj says:

        Zeek –

        This suggestion of Ga Tech made me go look up an article from last year: The Geography of College Football Fans (and Realignment Chaos) by Nate Silver. He offers Ga Tech as the 11th largest fan base in the country located in the city (Atlanta) with the 2nd most overall college football fans than anywhere else (New York City is #1, but just barely).

        If that is true, I think Ga Tech is attractive because it is: 1) an AAU school; 2) a football brand bigger than Md or Rutgers; 3) has one of the largest fan bases in the country (Silver says it is #11 overall); 4) is in perhaps the most football-crazed large city in the country; 5) is in the growing south. You can cites weaknesses in how Silver gets his numbers, but if he is even close to accurate, you take Ga Tech. Who else boasts a bigger fan base that is available?

        • zeek says:

          The problem with that analysis is that we’re talking about what portion of the fanbase can you monetize.

          i.e. What portion of that fanbase can you get on basic cable BTN; especially when you’re talking about a school that you’re bringing to bring in a state.

          Georgia Tech may have a better fanbase than Maryland or Rutgers, but if you can’t monetize it by getting BTN on basic cable in Atlanta, then it’s worthless. It means nothing for them to have a big fanbase if that fanbase is spread out. There is no way that the BTN is getting on basic cable in the heart of the SEC.

          They’re a terrific school, but it’s hard to see how they’re a better add at this point than Maryland or Rutgers.

          Georgia Tech makes sense in a move to 16; not a move to 14. Right now the Big Ten seems focused on a move to 14.

      • B1G Jeff says:

        Zeek, I agree. Delaney et al haven’t previously proven to be that obtuse. Floating that makes you wonder what else they might have up their sleeve and how it would all fit together. Folks on this blot are good at evaluating scenarios, but I haven’t heard an especially convincing one for taking GT as an island.

        • zeek says:

          We’re trying to smoke out Virginia or North Carolina.

          Not sure it’ll work but who knows.

          I don’t think we get to 16 without UVa and/or UNC.

  61. 8-team Playoffs Now says:

    One more thought, if the B1G did go to 18 in 3 pods of 6, might not the P12 consider a similar to ND, say ND-Pitt-Syr-BC-Mia and either Clemson or Duke? Same economic and demographic reasons, but also perhaps enough critical mass by focusing on pods in other sports to sufficiently reduce cross-country travel.

  62. wmtiger says:

    B1G isn’t going past 16, B18 just doesn’t work.

  63. CarnegieNitt says:

    I haven’t been here in a while, but reading about the B1G expansion I saw the SEC is working on a channel with ESPN. I thought the ESPN payout was supposed to prevent this. It’s probably been discussed here before, but what changed in the financial picture to cause ESPN to rethink this?

    • m (Ag) says:

      The BTN has been doing very well & both the SEC and ESPN will agree to share the profits of a conference network, plus the SEC expanded with 2 schools that will expand the range of their network.

  64. Tom says:

    So does anyone have any guesses on the probability of Maryland becoming a Big Ten school tomorrow? From what I’ve read, the sentiment among Maryland fans/alumni seems to be anti-B1G while the sentiment among those making the decision/those with the most influence (administration, president, athletic department, largest donor) are pro-B1G. Surely, this has to be a done deal, right? Being publicly spurned by Notre Dame is one thing, but being publicly spurned by Maryland would look terrible.

    • zeek says:

      I would say it’s extremely high.

      Seems like they have a couple of votes locked up in terms of people involved directly or big football donors on the Board of Regents (need a majority of the 16).

      Given that the big $ football guys are likely helping to drive this (Plank among others); it seems likely to go through.

      My guess is 85-90% likelihood of going through.

      I think the vote will be something like 11-5 in favor.

    • Jericho says:

      I don’t think this leaked because the parties wanted it to leak. It’s just hard to keep anything quiet these days. But I would think the smart thing would be to delay a vote. From everything I’ve read, only a few key players have been involved up to this point. That means most people voting are just getting their info now. And they have not heard from alumni outside one weekend. Even if its just for show, I think you let the alumni have their input.

      • ccrider55 says:

        Like Syracuse, Pitt, and the ACC did?

      • zeek says:

        Delaying a vote might be disastrous. They probably have enough assurances that they can get the votes, so they might as well have it out and then let the transition begin.

        There’s no point in sitting on a topic this explosive…

      • frug says:

        Delaying the vote would be the dumbest thing possible. It’s like pulling off a Band-Aid. Better the slower you go the more painful it is. Better to just get it done all at once.

  65. jj says:

    not sure i like this. not sure Jimmy cares what i think.

  66. jj says:

    I like playing with the alignments. I think this works best; and yes i think UM and OSU should be together. I think that was the big mistake last time.

    Outsiders – NE, IA, WI, MN, PSU, RU, MD
    Insiders – UM, MSU, OSU, IN, PUR, IL, NW

    I think this is balanced and hits pretty much all of the games people care about for the most part.

    • jj says:

      also, we gotta go to 9 games in this case to get people around. no locked rivals needed in my split, which would help enormously. 1

      • Brian says:


        “also, we gotta go to 9 games in this case to get people around.”

        Hopefully going to 14 would force that, but they already chickened out once after saying they’d do it.

        “no locked rivals needed in my split, which would help enormously.”

        Locked rivals are here to stay. They want to guarantee at least 4 king/king games each year with 2+ per team.

        14 teams
        6-1-2 schedule
        Current division except IL moves west and MD and RU join the east

        Locked – PSU, WI, PU, IN, MD, RU, MI (played every year)
        Rotating – 2 of NE, MSU, IA, NW, MN, IL (played 1/3 of the time)

        If the B10 was wise, they’d rotate both opponents every year so you’d play each school at least once every 3 years. You get the return games of the home and home 3 years later. A compromise is to rotate 1 opponent each year so you play home and homes but still play 5 of the 6 teams in a 4 year span and all 6 at least once in 5 years. The traditional option is to rotate 2 on and 2 off every other year.

        • zeek says:

          This expansion though could make it easier to accept 9 games.

          Before going to 9 games meant you’d face a much harder schedule than it will mean under a 14 team configuration with 9 games.

          You’re loading up everyone’s schedules with more Illinois (West) or Maryland/Rutgers (East), so that extra game isn’t going to be a bear.

          The current 12 team Big Ten with a 9 game schedule is a way different proposition.

          • Brian says:


            “This expansion though could make it easier to accept 9 games.”

            It depends what prevented it. The locked OOC rivals haven’t changed much.

            “Before going to 9 games meant you’d face a much harder schedule than it will mean under a 14 team configuration with 9 games.”

            Not really. A 9th game means you’d face the average of the other division’s members that you aren’t locked with. It’s be slightly easier now for the top teams since MD and RU are bottom half teams.

            Old = MI, PSU, WI, PU, IL, IN + 0.4*(NE, MSU, IA, NW, MN)
            Old + 9 = MI, PSU, WI, PU, IL, IN + 0.6*(NE, MSU, IA, NW, MN)

            New = MI, PSU, WI, PU, MD, RU, IN + 0.17*(NE, MSU, IA, NW, MN, IL)
            New + 9 = MI, PSU, WI, PU, MD, RU, IN + 0.33*(NE, MSU, IA, NW, MN, IL)

            Based on conference W% for 2002-2011, OSU would expect to win:
            (I said NE = PSU, MD = NW, RU = IL since I don’t have enough data for them against OSU)

            Old = 4.625 + 0.4(4.247) = 6.3/8 = 0.790
            Old + 9 = 7.2/9 = 0.797

            New = 5.482 + 0.17(5.122) = 6.3/8 = 0.792
            New + 9 = 5.482 + 0.33(5.122) = 7.2/9 = 0.799

            A 9th game would make OSU’s schedule very slightly easier in B10 play either way. Adding these two schools and moving IL makes almost no difference.

            “You’re loading up everyone’s schedules with more Illinois (West) or Maryland/Rutgers (East), so that extra game isn’t going to be a bear.”

            The bearness of the 9th game all depends on who you are and who your locked rival is. It doesn’t change much for most teams. MSU and WI would suffer the most since they have the easiest locked rivals relative to their success.

            “The current 12 team Big Ten with a 9 game schedule is a way different proposition.”

            See above.

        • jj says:

          I can see the merit of a 6-1-2, but moving IL and adding RU and MD to the Leaders makes that side pretty weak. we’re adding 2 pretty weak teams.

          We’re also going to need to figure out something with BB. The schedules are already way too imbalanced.

          • jj says:


            A 10 game schedule works really well as a 6-1-3. Gets you everyone in 2 years and a 4 year player would see all venues in the league.

            A real hard sell though, I’m sure.

          • StevenD says:

            ??? “2 pretty weak teams”

            Yes, Maryland (4-7) is a weak team, but Rutgers (9-1) is on track to play in the Orange Bowl this year.

          • Brian says:


            “I can see the merit of a 6-1-2, but moving IL and adding RU and MD to the Leaders makes that side pretty weak. we’re adding 2 pretty weak teams.”

            MD > RU > IL based on the past 10 years. People already complain the east is too easy with IL, IN and PU, so you replace IL with two slightly better teams while giving the west another bottom feeder. It works.

            “We’re also going to need to figure out something with BB. The schedules are already way too imbalanced.”

            1. 26 game double round robin and screw OOC games.

            2. 13 + 3 locked rivals you always get home and home + 2 rotating second games through the other 10 schools. You could even choose the 2 based on recent success (sort of like ACC/B10 challenge) so you may never see home and homes with certain schools.

          • Brian says:


            “A 10 game schedule works really well as a 6-1-3. Gets you everyone in 2 years and a 4 year player would see all venues in the league.

            A real hard sell though, I’m sure.”

            Yeah, good luck convincing IA to only have 1 OOC game to play with.

          • Brian says:


            “Yes, Maryland (4-7) is a weak team, but Rutgers (9-1) is on track to play in the Orange Bowl this year.”

            It’s 9-1 in the BE with a loss to Kent State, so don’t get too excited. It’s also only one year.
            Remind me. How many BE titles RU has won in FB?

          • bullet says:

            Illinois looks pretty comparable to Maryland over the last decade or so. 1 really good year and a bunch of not so good years. That keeps the competitive balance about the same.

    • zeek says:

      I think you want to keep Michigan with Nebraska and Ohio State with Penn State.

      Think about it like this, if you move Illinois to the West; then you guarantee home games for Rutgers and Maryland with Ohio State or Penn State annually.

      If you make the 4 new crossover games:

      Michigan State-Rutgers

      Then that further helps because Rutgers is assured of getting Wisconsin or Michigan State at home annually along with Ohio State or Penn State.

      The same would be true of Maryland getting Iowa or Wisconsin at home annually along with Ohio State or Penn State.

      It’s important to make sure those two have strong schedules and giving them crossovers with Michigan State or Iowa respectively is a decent way to achieve that along with their division group of Ohio State/Penn State/Wisconsin.

      • jj says:

        Just re-boot. I think the western 4 want to play and the eastern 3 want to play; so just put them together. The middle looks good as well by reuniting OSU and UM and IL and NW.

        Here’s one with crossovers in corresponding order, which I cannot imagine anyone having a legit issue with.

        Inside: OSU, UM, MSU, IL, NW, PUR, IND
        Outside: PSU, NE, Wisc, IA, MD, MN, Rutgers

        I think the little brown jug is the only casualty and that’s not exactly must see tv.

        • Brian says:


          “Just re-boot.”

          Why? The B10 is happy with the current divisions. Eventually you need to accept that.

          “I think the western 4 want to play”

          Sure they do.

          “and the eastern 3 want to play;”

          Of course.

          “so just put them together.”

          Why? Wanting to play each other doesn’t mean they want to go halfway across the country for conference games multiple times per year. Besides, the greater good has always been more important than the individual wishes of one school.

          “Here’s one with crossovers in corresponding order, which I cannot imagine anyone having a legit issue with.

          Inside: OSU, UM, MSU, IL, NW, PUR, IND
          Outside: PSU, NE, Wisc, IA, MD, MN, Rutgers

          I think the little brown jug is the only casualty and that’s not exactly must see tv.”

          Legit issues off the top of my head:
          1. OSU and MI together
          2. Travel is all for the Outside
          3. All 4 of the newest members are in one division
          4. The Little Brown Jug has been played much more than WI/IA
          5. No NW/IA

          • jj says:

            i have accepted that the B10 is happy with it, though I don’t “need” to do anything.

          • Brian says:


            As long as you’ve accepted that they’re happy, that’s all I’m asking for. You can continue to hate it all you want.

      • Brian says:


        “I think you want to keep Michigan with Nebraska and Ohio State with Penn State.”

        Most likely.

        “If you make the 4 new crossover games:

        Michigan State-Rutgers

        That’s never going to happen. The B10 chose the crossovers to preserve important games or rivalries (5 of the 6). With IL moving, that frees up IL and NW to play the new guys. That’s great because they aren’t so strong that they’ll crush the newbies every year. The last thing RU needs is automatic losses to OSU, PSU, WI and MSU every year.

        “Then that further helps because Rutgers is assured of getting Wisconsin or Michigan State at home annually along with Ohio State or Penn State.”

        They’d like some winnable games, too.

        “It’s important to make sure those two have strong schedules and giving them crossovers with Michigan State or Iowa respectively is a decent way to achieve that along with their division group of Ohio State/Penn State/Wisconsin.”

        No, the two need interesting schedules for the fans. That doesn’t always mean a ton of tough games. Wins excite fans more than anything. MD fans will enjoy road trips to Evanston while IL and RU have a lot in common as well.

        • jj says:

          as an MSU fan, I have zero desire for an annual rutgers matchup. maybe MD would be interesting.

        • zeek says:

          It’s possible; but I really don’t think there was much historical value to those Michigan State/Iowa matchups against Indiana and Purdue.

          Anyways regardless of how this goes down, I think the addition of two “bottom half” programs will make it easier to move to 9 games.

          • Brian says:


            “It’s possible; but I really don’t think there was much historical value to those Michigan State/Iowa matchups against Indiana and Purdue.”

            MSU and IN play for a trophy. It’s a minor one and neither side cares much, but it was a reason to choose MSU/IN over MSU/PU. IA was going to get whichever team was leftover since it had no ties to IN or PU.

            Freeing up IL and NW doesn’t change much. NW and MD seem like a natural pair. IL/RU would get both newbies access to Chicago and the heart of the conference and be reasonably balanced. IA/PU already exists so they’ll keep that, leaving MSU/IN. MSU/IN sucks but it is for a trophy so it’ll be kept. Hopefully some of the energy from hoops will bleed over now that Crean has IN back to respectability.

            “Anyways regardless of how this goes down, I think the addition of two “bottom half” programs will make it easier to move to 9 games.”

            I’d like to think so, but the same impediments remain. Seeing teams less often may be enough to change their minds yet again, but I won’t hold my breath.

    • Brian says:


      “and yes i think UM and OSU should be together. I think that was the big mistake last time. ”

      You are, of course, welcome to think that. But TPTB aren’t changing their minds on that subject. Have you heard a single AD or president say they would have preferred OSU and MI together? No. Only fans have said it, and they are split on the issue.

      • jj says:

        i hear you, just saying – it’s stupid. they like it because they think it will be a money maker.

        • Brian says:


          I think they like it because the know it’s a money maker and because the other 8-10 schools wanted to make sure they shared a division with one of them. I think the other schools also worried about all the media attention going to any division with OSU and MI in it, much to the detriment of the other one.

          • jj says:

            we’ll have to agree to disagree on this one.

            I can see the others wanted to be with one of them,but t certainly wasn’t a sacrifice of any kind on UM and OSU’s part.

          • Brian says:


            “we’ll have to agree to disagree on this one.”

            I don’t think we do disagree.

            “I can see the others wanted to be with one of them,but t certainly wasn’t a sacrifice of any kind on UM and OSU’s part.”

            I didn’t say it was. It wasn’t UM and OSU overriding the wishes of the others is all I’m saying. I honestly don’t know where OSU and MI officially stood on the issue. Both fan bases were split on the topic.

          • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

            Brandon actively advocated the split. Smith just grinned & nodded dumbly as is his wont.

          • zeek says:

            It’s tough to know what would have been right to do.

            It’s easy to say that the Big Ten should have kept them together but there were two problems:

            1) Nobody wanted to be in a division that might go without playing both schools for years (this was a hugely understated issue)

            2) The media attention problem

            Even with Nebraska and Penn State in the conference, they’re geographically on the periphery and fans are going to see them that way, so that doesn’t change the Michigan/Ohio State-centric nature of the conference. It just is what it is…

  67. Richard says:

    BTW, a Big20 (with ND) would make it one of the 2 dominant conferences in football (with 5-6 kings, it would have as much or more than the SEC), the best conference by far in basketball (with over half the kings in that sport), and one of the top consortiums of major research universities in the world.

    • zeek says:

      A Big 20 had better have a 50 year grant of rights or something along those lines.

      It’d be a bit too unwieldy I’d think.

      At 14, we’re already not going to see crossover opponents as much, so when you talk about 16 or 18 or 20, you’re taking that to another extreme.

      We don’t want to become the NFL.

      • Richard says:

        Well, my Big20 would have some pods never seeing each other (outside of the championship game), but that would not be a big loss as Wisconsin-Rutgers & Michigan-Duke, etc. pretty much never happen now anyway and the original 10 schools in the B10 would play each other frequently.

        • rich2 says:

          with more expansion talk bubbling up I wanted to gauge the sentiment of this board. Four quick responses:
          1. Why does everyone assume that the cable model will continue to generate increasing profits 15 years from now? …ever-increasing profits for as far the eye can see — rarely happens in technology.. can the soon to be Big 14 vote members out of the Big 14 once their value to the BTN dries up? If so, you should tell MD and RU to pack lightly.
          2. Speaking of kicking members out… I thought this board had concluded that MD and RU were poor additions to the Big14? Now it appears to have changed — at least Mgoblog is consistent – 90% hate the idea of adding MD and RU — as they did two years ago.
          3. B20? Really — what is the point. Might as well go to B64… think of the television rights…
          4. This seems to be a really inopportune moment to be arguing that the Big 10 can execute various strategies and machinations to “force” ND to join a conference it does not want to join.

          • zeek says:

            I think this is happening because ND has made it clear that it never plans to join the Big Ten.

            The Big Ten needs access to the Mid-Atlantic region. This gets the Big Ten to the doorstep.

            Perhaps later down the road UVa + 1 enters and it becomes a 16 team league.

            As for the cable model, no one’s trying to project that out too far into the future. It is what it is.

          • Brian says:


            1. Because the B10 will sign a contract that lasts that long that will guarantee them huge payouts. And the cable companies will still control things even if the method of delivery changes (see ATT).

            2. I thought the conclusion was that they were poor #12′s and there was no need to go to 14. Most of us aren’t discussing whether or not the B10 needs to expand at this point because we all have our opinions and they aren’t changing. That means the discussion is mostly about why this might happen and what might result. I’m still anti-expansion but fail to see a point in saying that in every comment.

            3. Richard is crazy.

            4. Nothing will force ND to do anything, and I don’t think the B10 wants to or is trying to force them. It’s just one Machiavellian way of interpreting these events. I’d much rather ND stays far away.

          • zeek says:

            I’m with Brian on this.

            It’s fruitless for us to argue pros and cons anymore. We all have our own opinions of what makes sense.

            We just need to focus on analysis of rationales at this point.

          • frug says:

            1. Because it has ever since schools got back their TV rights from the NCAA in the mid-80′s

            2. I don’t think that Maryland and Rutgers are good fits for the Big Ten right now (I really don’t understand the timing of this move), but if this was happening closer to the expiration of the current TV contract I wouldn’t have a problem with it from a business perspective. Also, as I alluded to above, Rutgers may be a fall back option, not a true target. Since Maryland wouldn’t be joining until 2014 the Big Ten has plenty of time to wait and see if they can ply somebody more valuable.

            3. No one but Richard thinks that is a good idea.

            4. What would be a more opportune time? I mean, I don’t think that is the Big Ten’s primary motivation right now, but it’s just speculation.

          • frug says:

            Oh, and for full disclosure, I have said in the past that I believed that ND would be full member of a football conference within a decade and this only reinforces my belief.

          • bullet says:

            Its all interesting, but I’ve said I think anything above 12 is unstable in the long term. With Nebraska as 12, the Big 10 is a nice fairly tight knit group. I think at least in the short term this makes money, but I don’t see it being a mint. At $200 million in cable fees which was thrown out before as a high end, that’s only $14 million per school. So Rutgers and Maryland have to generate $10 million otherwise just to break even.

            Its got to be part of a long run strategy to reduce the Big 5 to the Big 4 (or Big 4 +1 in the mezzanine) or Big 3 +2. Maybe being in NY and DC put you closer to decision makers on research grants. That may be part of it. But its not Rutgers and Maryland generating vast amounts of broadcasting $ or dramatically increasing the competitiveness of the conference. Now if the Big 5′s 80% of the playoff revenue isn’t split evenly 5 ways, that does generate substantial $.

          • bullet says:

            I posted this on the previous blog before I realized this new one was here, so I will repeat it since we’re talking about incentives for Maryland and Rutgers. Below is the Texas budget comparison for 1984-5 and 2012-3. All the state research universities have similar issues. The % and amount of the budget coming from research grants and other has increased dramatically while state support has shrunk:
            1984-5 Budget $503 million-source of funds:
            state general revenue 47%
            Available University Fund 12% (W. Texas oil land)
            Gifts and endowments 3%
            Tuition and fees 5%
            Research grants and other 33%

            2012-3 Budget $2.35 billion
            state general revenue 13%
            Available University Fund 8%
            Gifts and endowments 9%
            Tuition and fees 25%
            Research grants and other 45%

          • Richard says:

            Big2+2, I believe.

            Bullet: So you think that the SEC is unstable?

            My belief is that times change, and a consolidation of market power makes sense for the NCAA schools. We use to have a lot more smaller cell phone companies and airlines; we’re not going back to those days either.

          • bullet says:

            SEC unstable-long run, yes-at least a whole lot more than before, which was near zero. There’s already lots of compromises and difficulties that weren’t there before. Lots of reports of SEC colleagues telling Big 12 colleagues that 14 is a pain. In 20 or 30 years maybe you have a MWC/WAC type split. Maybe not. But the probability is much higher than before.

          • ccrider55 says:


            Being a pain and unstable aren’t necessarily tha same.
            SEC also may say that as discouragement, because both conf may have designs on the same teams.

          • bullet says:

            I don’t think they are interested in the same teams. In any event, there’s really no competition. The SEC will be at least similar financially and maybe better and vastly better geographically. If the type of recruiting in the SEC scares anyone off, they simply won’t go.

            I don’t think the SEC is at any risk now at all, but its those types of things that contribute to long range problems. The SEC is growing dissimilar. Maybe at some point Florida, Georgia, Alabama start to wonder what Vanderbilt and Mississippi State add. Do they really want Arkansas? If you have some North Carolina/Miami type scandals in the SEC and the schools have succeeded because of it, maybe schools like Florida and Georgia look east or north. With a smaller, closer group, that is less likely to happen.

          • bamatab says:

            @ Richard – Trust me when I say that their is absolutely no instability within the SEC, nor will there be in the foreseeable future. There was some heartache in the fact that the teams in opposite divisions won’t be playing as often, but that should be remedied once the SEC goes to 16 teams and they can be divided up into pods. The only team that might would leave is Mizzou to the B1G, and I doubt that happens anytime soon.

    • Andy says:

      How is a Big 20 even a conference? What a ridiculous idea.

  68. Eliot says:

    UVa grad here.

    Demographic and culture shifts have really pushed Maryland into a corner. It’s no longer a southern school (if it ever was) and it lacks any real rivals in the ACC. With their current financial woes I can certainly understand why they’re jumping ship. I’m saddened by their departure but no one is going to miss traveling up to College Park.

    As for our future, UVa will look south. The college remains a conservative southern institution. We’ll never join a northern conference.

    • zeek says:

      Politically and demographically though Virginia is becoming a lot more similar to the Northern states.

      Obviously, that may never fully translate to UVa and especially not Va Tech, but Virginia is hardly a traditional Southern state at this point.

      The past 5-10 years have dramatically changed the political and cultural leanings of that state (particularly with how heavy the Northeast Virginia population growth has been).

      • Brian #2 says:

        NOVA has a completely different culture than UVa. You are correct that NOVA is Northern, but UVa is about as Southern as a university can get. In general, there is a clear cultural divide in Virginia between NOVA and everything South of it (including Charlottesville, Richmond, Blacksburg, Hampton Roads, etc).

        • M says:

          UVa takes a huge number of students from NOVA (and out of state). Off-grounds is much more southern, but the university itself is much more like NOVA than any other part of the state.

    • Richard says:

      The Big20 will be only a bit more northern than the current ACC.

      And yes, VA is changing rapidly; the Midlands culture has already swept over MD and now is penetrating in to VA. Does UVa send more grads to NYC or Alabama?

    • Brian #2 says:

      “As for our future, UVa will look south. The college remains a conservative southern institution. We’ll never join a northern conference.”

      This won’t go over well on here, but I agree 100% with you.

    • M says:

      I have one degree from UVa and I’m getting another one. I have been to almost every B1G “grounds” and a few indisputably “southern” schools. UVa is much more like the general Big Ten school than it is like LSU, Clemson, or Alabama. Granted, it’s not very much like either one, but if UVa had to choose between the SEC and B1G, it’s the Big Ten easily.

  69. Andy says:

    So Maryland is leaving the ACC and now all of a sudden you’re all claiming the ACC is collapsing? What kind of sense does that make?

    The ACC still has 13 teams left plus Notre Dame, and then they add UConn, which is a decent but not great addition, but really not that much worse than Maryland. I just don’t see how losing Maryland hurts them all that much.

    Now if Florida State leaves that’s another story entirely, but that doesn’t seem to be happeing.

    • zeek says:

      Most of us probably think the ACC will be unaffected by this. As long as FSU and Clemson stick around, it has nothing to worry about…

    • Brian says:

      I don’t think anybody is saying the ACC is collapsing. Several are saying this could be a chink in the armor that leads to them collapsing, perhaps by showing FSU they can afford to leave for example. If FSU and Clemson also left, the ACC would be starting to collapse.

  70. metatron says:

    I’m lukewarm on Maryland.
    I’m cold on Rutgers.
    I’m absolutely frigid on Georgia Tech.

    I don’t want to hitch my wagon to a cable system that may or may not be dead in the future, at the sacrifice of brand power and cultural cohesiveness. Rutgers and Maryland are mercenaries, just as PSU. Georgia Tech is the enemy.

    I know it’s a broken record, but Kansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma are better choices for fans, and that’s what really drives college football. Don’t be too smart for your own good; don’t wreck a good conference.

    • jj says:

      I’d honestly rather have Toronto and teach them how to play american football than take Rutgers.

    • zeek says:

      Oklahoma never wanted to come, and Missouri was bypassed for Nebraska at 12.

      Kansas really makes no sense at all.

      These are decisions being made for many decades in the future as well as the present.

      • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

        Oklahoma approached the B1G when it looked like the B12 was going to completely implode but was turned away.

      • frug says:

        Oklahoma and three other Big XII schools approached the Big XII about membership after A&M announced their departure but were turned down for academic reasons. And you can make a case for a KSU-less Kansas being at least as valuable to the Big 10 as any ACC school besides UNC (especially if the Big Ten didn’t go past 14).

        That said, your right that none of those were realistic scenarios.

        • zeek says:

          That and Delany’s always had his eye on ND or the Mid-Atlantic.

          This is just further confirmation of that.

          He must have decided to only take Nebraska to close off the West and then focus the rest of the spots on the East (barring some unforeseen development with Texas).

          • frug says:

            Nebraska was a target of convenience. Unless Texas was game the plan was always to go East, but when it came time to grab a 12th UNL was just too good to pass up.

        • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

          Word was that at one point Oklahoma quietly gauged the possibility of a lone invite (sans Oklahoma State) and were still told no.

          • frug says:

            Wouldn’t surprise me. The Big Ten has made pretty clear that AAU membership is a requirement for any potential member besides Notre Dame.

    • ccrider55 says:

      It isn’t the system. It is the rights to the content that whatever broadcast/distribution system exists, and needs to purchase, that is the value in the conference.

    • Brian says:


      “Georgia Tech is the enemy.”

      Have you ever been there? Atlanta is an oasis amongst the deep south and GT is full of northerners and international students.

      “I know it’s a broken record, but Kansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma are better choices for fans,”

      For some fans, maybe. I have no interest in KU in the B10. MO doesn’t excite me. OU would tick me off because of their academics and they are nothing like most of the B10. They’d also make for a 5th king which is not necessary. I’d rather make smart business decisions and maintain high academic standards than go to some empty states to get an elite FB and BB team.

      Plenty of B10 fans and alumni live in the eastern half of the B10 and beyond and are more likely to accept the eastern schools. I’m out of the region, so travel isn’t an issue for me.

      OH + MI + PA = 34M people
      IL + IN = 19M
      NE + IA +WI + MN = 16M

      Now add in all the alumni that have moved towards NYC and DC and compare that to those who went towards MO/TX. The B10 is becoming more of a northern group with older alums living in the sun belt. There are fans everywhere, so playing the midwest/great plains card isn’t persuasive.

      • zeek says:

        This last part is why I’ve gotten on board.

        Maryland (+ a future UVa and/or Va Tech) is a great angle on all of the alumni movement towards that region. It seems like everyone’s going there in the East…

  71. GreatLakeState says:

    Rutgers and Maryland are the ultimate diamonds in the rough. The talent pool surrounding those schools combined with B1G bucks could turn both of them into top flight Big Ten schools. Major facility upgrades and home games with Michigan, tOSU, Nebraska, Penn St. will do wonders for them.

    • zeek says:

      Even if they don’t pan out over the near term, they still have a lot of value in terms of location and the ability of the Big Ten to send the big brands over to NYC and D.C.

      I wouldn’t say they’re the “ultimate” diamonds in the rough. They’re not sleeping giants like UCLA, Texas A&M, UNC which make you just scratch your head at the inability of those schools to compete at the highest level more consistently (although maybe A&M turns the corner in the SEC).

      They’re more like Illinois but located in even hotter recruiting zones.

      I like the Maryland add because I think they can become something. If you have a relationship that tight with UnderArmour for the next two decades and you’re in the middle of a strong recruiting zone, you should be able to put something together.

      As far as recent expansions go, it seems obvious to me that they have more potential than Colorado/Utah or Syracuse/Pitt which both seemed like dead-end expansions to me in terms of the future of those 4 schools. None of those 4 schools is a sleeping anything threatening to become something more.

      Now, is it likely that the potential pans out? Probably not; these things are always unlikely. But at least it’s a play on future value.

      Outside of current ability to deliver their markets (in particular Rutgers in NYC), I’m not finding massive downside risks here.

      • frug says:

        They’re not sleeping giants like UCLA, Texas A&M, UNC which make you just scratch your head at the inability of those schools to compete at the highest level more consistently (although maybe A&M turns the corner in the SEC).

        Actually, its pretty easy to explain. UNC and UCLA are basketball schools and A&M has to recruit against Texas and Oklahoma (that is also an issue for UCLA who has to deal with USC).

        • zeek says:

          A&M’s had flashes of brilliance. And being the 3rd recruiting school in Texas is different considering the sheer wealth of top-flight talent there. They’ve had access to the kind of talent that you need; it’s just been momentary flashes for the most part.

          As for UNC and UCLA, they’re located in football recruiting zones as well though. They’ve had incredible football potential that’s never been put together.

          The whole “basketball school” thing is just an excuse; I mean football still drives the bus at those schools even if they call themselves basketball schools. I do realize how important Duke-UNC is, but still…

          • bullet says:

            A&M has had plenty of talent ever since the 70s. Their QB last year is playing in the NFL (so its not like Manziel is all the difference). They just haven’t been able to put it together. They’ve certainly had more talent than Kansas State, Missouri and Texas Tech, who did better over the last 10 years of the Big 12.

          • mushroomgod says:

            The “basketball school” theory has vclear alidity.

            When a school si a “football school” or a “basketball school” primarily, interest in the “other” sport invariably suffers.

            I’m not sure there is a single exception to this rule.

            Notice I said “interest” and not results. Some schools, like OSU, TX, Michigan make so damn much football $ that basketball is successful as well. However, OSU, TX, and Michigan are football schools first and foremost in terms of fan interest.

            NC is a basketball school…therefore NC State is a football school.

            Kansas is a basketball school, therefore K State is a football school

            UCLA is a basketball school, therefore USC is a football school

            As a result, Kansas, NC, and UCLA are generally seen as underachieving in football. The other schools are filling a void.

            In Indiana, IU and Purdue are both basketball schools….therefore both suck in football.

            I wish it were not so, because I love college football…..

          • FranktheAg says:

            Why do you focus on a 10 year period vs. the entire B12 tenure of A&M, bullet? Oh, right. It doesn’t fit in your Texas agenda. You are so often wrong I’m surprised anyone takes you serious here.

    • Beau says:

      I am sure this article was posted and discussed back in 2011. But seemed interesting in the context of possibly adding UMD and RU.

  72. J says:

    Add. (bleh, I was looking forward to one year of expansion-free play in the ACC)

  73. ZSchroeder says:

    This move by the Big 10 will likely push other dominos down. If the Big 12 were to expand this would be a good time to do so. If Maryland and/or Georgia Tech were to ditch the ACC it is likely that other ACC schools may be interested as well. Maybe not the likes of Duke, North Carolina or North Carolina State, but Clemson and Florida State may be candidates, which based on all the rumor this last year, are targets for the Big 12. Someone else mentioned that this is likely the death nail for the Big East. I fully agree. Though Rutgers isn’t holding the conference together, if they leave that is one more bad piece of news for the Big East. Honestly, now that the Big East doesn’t have an automatic bid the this new playoff system, why would Boise State and San Diego State stay? If the Big 12 was ever interested in Louisville and grab them, that is another decent football school gone, the two Big East West schools would be welcomed back by the Mountain West Conference. If the ACC were to backfill UConn and Louisville are their best options. I don’t see the ACC dying, it will still have a great basketball brand but their football brand will be very hard hit.

    As a side note, I wouldn’t think any of this would flush Notre Dame out of the ACC. I do wonder if the Rutgers, Maryland, Georgia Tech talk is the last push to 16 by the Big 10… but who would be number 16? Notre Dame would still be in a good other sports league with Duke, Virginia, NC, NCState, Boston College, Miami, Syracuse, Pitt… they would have no reason to give that up.

    If the Big 12 were to move to 14 who else is there? Clemson, Florida State and Louisville would be a great addition, I think BYU still would stay independent, though their route into the new system is tough, it was even with the BCS.

    For some reason I feel really bad for Idaho. A school that was in the a conference with all the PAC-8 members before that conference was formed, now has no conference home. I expect Boise to come back to the MWC at some point. When they do, hopefully they can bring their in state brother along with them.

    • wmwolverine says:

      Maryland finding out the new exit fee (bargained down from $50mil) will inform the other ACC schools what the cost is to leave.

      Big XII might see this as an opportunity to land valuable programs like potentially FSU & Clemson (like Maryland, doesn’t see much in common with its conference) while the SEC and B10 would consider those mid-Atlantic schools; VT, NC, NC State, Virginia, Duke, who’d suddenly be very available and open to a move if those previous dominoes fall.

    • bullet says:

      The Big East getting a big TV contract for football has to be simply perception. Memphis has been terrible. SMU and SDSU were terrible until the last 3 or 4 years. UH hasn’t been great. UCF has been the 3rd best team in the CUSA East. Temple never won the MAC. It just doesn’t make sense that this grouping is worth 4 times the CUSA or MWC simply in their football contract ($6-$7 million for football seems the most common estimate-but there are higher ones). I think if they lose too many more the value disappears because the perception that they are something more than CUSA or MWC disappears. I just don’t see it having that type of value without UConn, Rutgers and Louisville as part.

  74. Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

    “Coach K says he hopes Maryland stays in the ACC, even if his reaction elicits ‘two words with an exclamation point’ from Terps fans”,-e


    • zeek says:

      At this point, I’m just ready for it to either happen or not happen.

      And it won’t even affect the West division that much, so it won’t affect me that much…

  75. WILLiam says:

    I really am starting to think that the higher end values of the projected subscription fees is a valid estimate. Simply put, younger people do not watch tv anymore. And naysayers have a point in that the masses in the NYC to DC may not care about watching RU football. But they will be interested in watching NE, UM, OSU and PSU against the local team.

    I mean 20 years of that sorta money hitting your athletic department and scholarships. Combined with the CIC, and being part of a collective rather than a tobacco road hierachy or dying conference. This is a win win for both schools. ( I really think the Big east was dead in a few years anyways with a basketball football split.

    For the Big Ten this is a win win win situation. The future added revenues, maitaining the status quo with regards to switching to 9-game conference scheds. Cutting the ACC in half geographiclally and decreasing a rival conference future growth and revenue. Athletics, Academics, and financial solvency: This is giant step in becoming a powerful leading group; one that has always led by example.

    I also think many have forgotten about the PAC12/B1G. Had that gone through and the BIG still adding up to 14 or going to 16……..amazing. Delany must be credited with being very creative and proactive.

    When I just sit back and think of the possibilities, knowing what the B1G has done in the past, this is indeed a very exciting time for the B1G schools.

    I say Welcome to the B1G guys!

    • zeek says:

      I’m not sure we would be looking at Maryland/Rutgers if the Big Ten-Pac-12 alliance had gone through.

      It seems like that would have accounted for a 9th game per year.

      It’d have been a lot harder to justify moving to 14 considering that I’m among those who do think we’ll see a 9 game slate soon, especially with 14 members.

  76. Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

    Sounds like the vote went through. 96-43

    Welcome Terrapins.

    • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

      Or at least that is what a random poster claims on the TetsudoTimes blog.

      • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

        Nevermind, apparently tha’s a Twitter poll. gah

      • zeek says:

        It’s 16 BoR voting.

        That 96-43 was also posted by their 247 sports blogger. I’m not sure what that number is…

        • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

          It was a Twitter straw poll.

          When it first popped up I just (ass)umed they were using some goofy voting system (x has 15 votes, y has 10 votes etc).

      • Nemo says:

        Source for real news is the blog on Rivals. That guy has been all over the story from the get-go. The source has been dead on the entire way, and is a good, “old school” reporter. The board will be going nuts in about 10 minutes.


    • Jonathan says:

      That number is absurd. Do expect a presser today, however, and it will be favorable.

  77. Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

    Jeff Ermann ‏@insidemdsports

    A source with knowledge of the situation tells #Maryland has decided to move to the #BigTen

    • zeek says:

      I’ve come to terms with this move for the Big Ten; it makes sense looking at the future and the need for the Big Ten to get an angle on the Mid-Atlantic.

      If we go after Rutgers this time around, I hope that we get Virginia (and/or Virginia Tech) in a move to 16.

      • @zeek: Do you think the BigTen presidents would be accepting of VT if it included UVa? I can’t remember VT’s academic or research profile. A Big16 of UMD+RU+VT+UVA would be interesting, and the money influx might help VT remain relevant after Beamer retires…

        • zeek says:

          I’m virtually certain that the next step is to get to the other side of the D.C. market, i.e. to corner it with Big Ten alumni/fans + Maryland + Virginia (and/or Virginia Tech).

          That means that UVa has to be included in almost any scenario to 16 (barring a change of heart by ND, which I think we can say has sailed).

          The question is whether we can get UVa + UNC. I’m not sure that’s even possible given all the thorny politics around UNC/NC State/Duke.

          The alternatives are then built around UVa + 1. The question is whether the Big Ten presidents would rather go for UVa + Georgia Tech or UVa + Virginia Tech or something like that (assuming we grab Rutgers now instead of Georgia Tech).

          Personally, I think UVa + Virginia Tech would be the perfect way to get to 16. Those two schools are roughly equivalent to Arizona/Arizona State in value for the Pac-12. They’re both prizes, and they give you a complete cluster around D.C., which would have huge long-term value.

          • ChicagoMac says:

            If GT could find a dance partner in the Southeast they would be a great fit, IMHO.

            There isn’t very many AAU options left on the board. Vandy? UNC? Duke? UVA? Kansas?

            Would the B1G be willing to take on Clemson, VT, or FSU?

          • zeek says:

            Clemson and FSU are off the table; I’m not really sure that Delany or the COP/C wants to risk spreading the conference too thin geographically.

            Virginia Tech is the most interesting school to me.

            I think they would be a legitimate option paired with Virginia, and I’d think that the Big Ten presidents would come around to seeing it as a possibility.

          • ChicagoMac says:

            @zeek, i follow your logic on VT. Makes a ton of sense on a lot of levels, and one I hadn’t seen mentioned is that it would allow you to move Wisconsin back the West.

      • mushroomgod says:

        I would hope the BIG stays at 14……the only way I’d say to go to 16 is if it would be ND and NC……….

  78. bullet says:

    Miami is going to self-impose a bowl ban this year (per Joe Schad tweet at ESPN). So GT will go to the ACC championship game vs. FSU. If they lose to Georgia, they will be 6-6.

  79. zeek says:

    RT @McMurphyESPN: Maryland’s board of regents unanimously approves move to Big Ten, source tells @ESPN

    Well what do you know. No drama at all here. This thing was a done deal already…

    • @zeek: Unreal. I seriously wonder how long this was in the works.

      • zeek says:

        It was probably already a done deal when it started to get leaked to the public.

        • gas1958 says:

          This is reminiscent of college fund raising, wherein a major campaign is “announced” with the target 40-50% already met in the silent phase. This looks like the fix was in.

        • @zeek: Which makes me wonder what else is already a done deal.

        • bullet says:

          So is the rule, if you hear it, it isn’t happening. The things you don’t hear about happen.

          A&M to the SEC, Colorado to the Pac 12 had been discussed for years, maybe not continuously. Pitt/SU as 13/14 for ACC, Nebraska to Big 10, TCU to Big 12 happened a couple days after the rumours hit.

    • B1G Jeff says:

      Yes, but the really interested thing is… what’s next!

      • zeek says:

        Delany’s playing the East Coast card.

        He always had 3 strategies:

        1) Sit at 12 happy with Nebraska as the final piece.

        2) Wait for ND.

        3) Go for D.C. (and possibly NYC)

        He’s going for D.C. (and possibly NYC). That means that we’re likely to go after Virginia some day in the future.

      • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

        *rocking back and forth* no rutgers no rutgers no rutgers no rutgers no rutgers no rutgers

        • B1G Jeff says:

          I’m good with Rutgers if FOX can deliver the cable homes. This isn’t about just college football, although football is driving this. I’m at least as interested in winning the academic and financial wars as I am in the football side. Plus I believe our chance of winning more titles is enhanced not by adding yet another king but by adding another middling team making it more likely one of our kings can have an undefeated season and get a shot at the title. Last time I checked, only the SEC’s 1 loss teams are getting into the NCG.

          • Not entirely true. OSU backed into the NCG in 2007 with one loss. For all the good it did them.

          • zeek says:

            B1G Jeff; that last point is the most underrated thing about all of this.

            Look at the SEC’s records.

            They have like 6 teams with 1 or 2 losses. You can only do that in a 14 team conference with enough teams giving up wins like candy…

            The Big 12 on the other hand is seeing how few teams can make it with 0 or 1 losses in a round robin format…

          • B1G Jeff says:

            Manifestodeluxe: respectfully, 2007 is a lifetime ago. We have lost much stature and prowess since then, the SEC has grow immeasurably, and the B12 has surpassed us in perception this year. Aside from the SEC, can you reliably bank on any one loss team getting into the NCG?

            As a strategy, the B12′s perceived strength has grown simply by being in the conversation through their scheduling strategy. Hell, if Rutgers hadn’t lost to a MAC team this year, they’d be in a better position for the NCG that any of our Kings. At day’s end, being a King is only as good as your record and your rep.

          • @B1G Jeff: 2007 was a long time ago, agreed. I don’t necessarily disagree with you on the rest, but if not for OSU’s suspension this year they’d be in the same discussion as ND for the championship. Moreover, most years OSU is in the national championship hunt even with one loss. The BigTen’s problem hasn’t been having one team in the conversation, it’s been having more than one. The SEC has five teams in the BCS top ten at the moment. The BigTen needs more than OSU in that conversation.

          • B1G Jeff says:

            Agreed. These days, my concern are more in having someone (anyone) at the table. This year has been embarrassing.

  80. ChicagoMac says:

    Timing of this is really interesting, is it not?

    With no other deadlines seemingly driving this it appears to me that B1G/Maryland waited to move until the ACC had secured its place with the Orange Bowl.

  81. zeek says:

    Virginia Tech has to be on the table even as a non-AAU now.

    Frank would agree with me on this I think. There’s no way that the Big Ten puts together a strategy to go for D.C. and then lets the SEC take the main school in the region without a fight.

    If it comes down to the it, the Big Ten will offer both Virginia and Virginia Tech. I’d be willing to bet on that.

    If you’re going for D.C., you can’t take Maryland/Virginia and then let the SEC take Virginia Tech without a fight.

    • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

      Did anyone care about VPI 25 years ago? Will anyone care after Beamer is gone?

      • zeek says:

        That’s not really the point.

        Think about it like this; there’s only 3 schools that people in D.C. care about as locals.

        Whether one of those schools rises or falls in relation to the others; if you have all 3, you own the D.C. region (in combination with Big Ten alumni/fans).

        But, if you don’t take all 3, then you run the risk of Virginia Tech turning into the dominant power in the D.C. market, while Virginia becomes an also-ran (think Georgia vs. Georgia Tech).

        Would you really want to risk that in the future? My gut tells me no. I think you take all 3 schools and guarantee ownership of the D.C. market regardless of whether Virginia becomes Georgia in that analogy or whether Virginia Tech does or whether neither does.

        • mushroomgod says:

          That market is not really worth the loss of identity and fit that VA and V Teck would entail….

          This was essentially a defensive move on the part of the BIG in reaction to the SEC and AA going to 14.

          • frug says:

            How exactly is attacking the ACC a defensive move? They didn’t pose any threat to the Big 10 (And neither did the SEC for that matter).

        • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

          There are also only a limited number of slots available. Do you use three of them on a single media market?

    • @zeek: VT covers the football portion for the immediate future. Maryland and Rutgers may one day grow into these amazing powerhouses, but they don’t have the cache now. Warranted or not, I think VT likely does in the public’s eye. BigTen money and exposure perhaps insures VT will survive after Beamer?

      I’d still really need to see evidence VT would be palatable to the presidents though, or evidence they’re headed in that direction if they aren’t now.

      • zeek says:

        It’s about 100 years as I explain above.

        Think about it like this, the Virginia/D.C. markets are unsettled with respect to the future. We have no way of knowing whether UVa or Va Tech will turn into the 800lb gorilla in that market or whether they’ll both share it with slight imbalances in one direction based on whether one school is in a historical peak or not.

        Right now they’re closer to an Arizona/Arizona State relationship rather than a Georgia/Georgia Tech.

        But Delany and the Big Ten presidents are smart enough to just not run the risk I’d think of Virginia Tech turning into Georgia in that market.

        That’s why I think we’d offer both as a package if either was looking to move.

        • Understood, but VT also feels somewhat like Oklahoma where it was speculated we might get Texas if we took OU and the presidents wouldn’t even sniff it. Is VT that caliber academically/research-wise, or are they like Nebraska and PSU where they were on the cusp and just need some help to get where the BigTen wants them?

          • zeek says:

            Naw, this is about markets and the like. Oklahoma was like Florida State. Too far away and just not justifiable.

            If you’re looking at a package deal of Virginia/Virginia Tech, it’s a totally different ballgame.

  82. Chudacris says:

    Interested to see who moves next among Delaney (with #14), Slive or Bowlsby.

  83. Mike says:

    The Maryland regents approve. Covering ten states, The Big Ten conference’s name could now refer to the ten Big Ten states.

  84. gas1958 says:

    @Zeek: What you say about VT makes sense–and you were one of ones on this board talking about MD at least for a couple of years–but I still can’t get past the AAU and “cultural” issues with VT. Also, even if the Virginia schools are/will be on the table, that doesn’t answer the question: what is the 14th (or 16th) team?

    • zeek says:

      There’s really only 3 choices for #14 right now: Rutgers, Georgia Tech, or Virginia.

      Depending on which of those 3 is #14, that let’s you look at 15-16:

      Maryland/Rutgers/Virginia/Virginia Tech

      Maryland/Rutgers/Virginia/Georgia Tech (really don’t think this would happen, but it might if the Presidents don’t want to go for Virginia Tech; Delany could persuade them otherwise though, the future is 100 years; you don’t turn away Virginia Tech if you think you can complete a D.C. cluster for 100 years in my opinion).

      Maryland/Georgia Tech/Virginia/UNC

      Maryland/Georgia Tech/Virginia/Virginia Tech

      • zeek says:

        I forgot Maryland/Rutgers/Virginia/UNC. That’s on the table and would be the only thing that could clearly get the Presidents to not take a long, hard look at Virginia Tech if they’re available.

    • mushroomgod says:

      You’re right gas, Vir and V Tech would be a mistake…..

      Conferences need an identity. The BIG has always been Midwestern, plus PSU as an outlier, sorta. Now it can be “northern”….but Midwestern + Northern + Southern means complete identity loss.

      Now NC plus ND, that’s another matter…..NC is national in a way VIR and V Tech are not….

    • bullet says:

      No date was mentioned. I would presume 2014 but it could be longer. Maybe quicker if the exit fee gets contentious. If you leave quicker there is less they can withhold.

    • Brian #2 says:

      Big Ten in a hurry to lock up the schools that no other power conference is interested in.

      Maryland and Rutgers just does not move the needle for me.

  85. SH says:

    Zeek – if B10 wanted VA and so did SEC, why not let both teams get coveted. UVA is a more natural fit with B10 and VT with the SEC. Why not let both the B10 and SEC penetrate VA. VT may be the better football program, but UVA is still the flagship university. And both schools and conferences may benefit in the long run.

    • zeek says:

      Perhaps, but then who’s #16? If it’s not UNC, then?

      • zeek says:

        Also, given how Delany thinks, I’d find it really odd that he’d be willing to split a market like that; especially when he just grabbed the other side with Maryland.

        • @zeek: I agree with your reasoning. I don’t think Delany wants to compete head-to-head against the SEC for a market. Not when he can snatch it entirely. It’s a big reason I don’t think GT is a major player in any of this. Perhaps GT is the secondary rumor to make UVa nervous?

          • zeek says:

            Yeah, I mean who knows about the Georgia Tech talk. As much as the COP/C like the academics, they’re not running a charity, so they can’t just do something that doesn’t bring a market or something along those lines.

            They pulled the Nebraska move knowing Nebraska was on the verge of being pulled from the AAU.

          • @zeek: GT has to be a smokescreen. Personally I think they’re a longer shot to bring the Georgia market than Rutgers is for NY/NJ. Much like Miami doesn’t “get” the BigTen Florida all of the sudden.

            The move has to have something for everyone. Nebraska has at least shown an interest and effort to increase their academic and research profile, so it was palatable. Is VT in the same boat, or are they content to be a place like Texas Tech?

        • SH says:

          My comparison would be to two stores that locate next to one another because they know that by being together you get more shoppers. I think I read where Crate and Barrel and the Container Store figured that out years ago – it benefitted both stores, even if it looked like you were splitting shoppers. Now that analogy is slightly different because those stores are not exactly the same. I guess you run the risk of a GT/GA situation where GA basically is the dominant program. But GA is the flagship university and GA is clearly a southern state. VA is basically half southern/half northern now. The DC market is not a “southern” market. But UVA and VT will have to both be taken care of. This works if both go to B10, both go to SEC, they stay put or one goes to B10 and one goes to SEC.

          • zeek says:

            All fair points.

            I just think it’s dangerous for two conferences to share a state that’s not like Texas or Florida with their mammoth sizes and ability to support multiple marquee programs.

            Think about the ACC’s presence in Georgia or soon to be Pennsylvania as compared to the ACC’s presence in Florida or the SEC’s presence in Texas.

            It’s a very dangerous ballgame when you bet 100 years into the future on something that could turn out lopsidedly against you as the ACC’s situation in Georgia and Pennsylvania show.

            That’s why you take all the properties in the cluster.

          • bullet says:

            UVA is the flagship. I don’t think there is a risk of them being seriously overshadowed. VT is growing bigger, so they are pretty safe for the SEC as well. They aren’t VPI anymore who was someone UK would schedule for homecoming.

          • michael says:

            Just as Va is changing because of northern Va, Georgia is changing because Atlanta is changing. GaTech is not crazy. That said, my bet would still be coastal — DC metro and NC, possibly a strike to southern Floria.

            The argument for DC metro/NC is that technology growth will drive regional wealth and demographics. Northeast corridor to NC is where that is happening. Atlanta, deep south — not anywhere near as much. The differences will become more pronounced rather than less because of talent network effects.

            Advertisers like eyeballs. They especially like eyeballs with lots of disposable income. I think the second point has not been a point of emphasis in this discussion and deserves more consideration.

          • Brian #2 says:

            “UVA is the flagship. I don’t think there is a risk of them being seriously overshadowed.”

            Kind of, but their grip on the state has declined due to modest enrollment, high percentage of students from outside the state, and high percentage of graduates that leave the state for employment. UVa is a public Ivy, but Va Tech graduates more students that stay in Virginia, which is important for assigning brand value within the state.

    • mushroomgod says:

      VA and V Tech won’t work for the reasons discussed above……

      VA without V Tech won’t work because you’re getting into dilution of the football brand w/o VA Tech…

      VA and NC might work because both are so high brow….one thing about VA, other than being southern, it’s also much smaller than all the BIG schools except NW…so there is some loss of institutional fit. Same for GT….both great schools, but more like ACC than BIG schools….

      VA and ND would work since both are so high brow and ND is football

      • zeek says:

        I’m almost certain that Virginia is going to be involved as 15 or 16. It’s too much of a proper fit given Delany’s strategy here.

  86. With the confirmation from Maryland, I’ve put up an open thread to use for discussions for the rest of today. I’ll have more thoughts later tonight.

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