Conference realignment observers have been chatting about the Big Ten raiding the ACC for awhile, but there were two separate reports today from sites with fairly good track records that point to this possibly occurring sooner rather than later.  InsideMDSports, which is the site that was among the first to report that Maryland was heading to the Big Ten, has Tweeted that North Carolina has an offer from former Dean Smith disciple Jim Delany and that Virginia and Georgia Tech are in the mix.  Meanwhile, Mr. SEC has his own post about how UVA and Georgia Tech have spoken with the Big Ten, but there won’t be any moves until there’s clarity in the ongoing Maryland/ACC lawsuit.

As I’ve stated previously, this all jives with what I believe the Big Ten wants to do with expansion.  The demographic shift to the South (both in terms of sheer population and football recruiting) has been a concern of the Big Ten for quite awhile – recall the results of the conference’s expansion study back in 2010 before they added Nebraska.  UVA in particular would give the Big Ten flags on both sides of the Washington, DC metro area, which might end up being the second most important market for the conference after Chicago when all is said and done.  (New York City is obviously the great white whale for college sports, but penetrating that market is going to be a long-term process for the Big Ten.  DC, on the other hand, can be turned into a legit “Big Ten town” immediately with the right combo.)

UNC, as one of the most prominent brand names in college sports that can deliver its entire home state all on its own, is at or near the top of the list of both the Big Ten and SEC, so it wouldn’t be a surprise if Delany had offered his alma mater an invite years ago.  However, I’ll reiterate that the Tar Heels are going to be one of the toughest nuts to crack in conference realignment (if they’re even crackable at all) since TV money alone isn’t going to sway them.  The ACC culture is strong at that school and, even if there are other defections from that league, UNC alone could keep the rest of the conference together just as the presence of Texas kept the Big 12 together.

Georgia Tech is a name that is brought up in Big Ten expansion discussions fairly regularly.  In a vacuum, there’s a lot to like about Georgia Tech – a great academic school in a top TV market and football recruiting area that is one of the largest destinations for Big Ten grads outside of the Midwest.  The problem, though, is that the SEC rules (and likely always will rule) Atlanta.  If there is a broader Southern expansion for the Big Ten (e.g. UVA, UNC, Georgia Tech and Florida State are all added to create an 18-school Big Ten), then there probably is enough of a critical mass of fans in the Atlanta market where it’s worth it to be the #2 conference there (as it’s such a strong college football market overall).  I’m not a fan of it being a lone geographic outlier in the South, though, which is close to what it would be if only UVA were to be added with the Yellow Jackets.

At the same time, as someone that implored people to “think like a university president and not like a fan” when it came to conference realignment back in 2009, I’ve now come full circle in badly wanting to make sure that the Big Ten ends up with at least one more legit football power if it is going to continue expanding.  Unless Notre Dame suddenly gets conference religion, the only realistic option on that front is Florida State and, by several accounts, the Seminoles are there for the taking.  As I’ve stated before, Florida State hits virtually every metric that the Big Ten is looking for long-term: football power, growing population and massive TV markets.  I understand better than most people about the importance of TV markets and academics to the Big Ten, yet this expansion gravy train is still ultimately fueled by football games that sports fans actually want to sit down and watch.  Let’s hope that if the Big Ten actually is able to further raid the ACC (and I’ll be a skeptic of that occurring until the day that there’s an actual announcement) that Jim Delany (who I’m sure is more than open to the prospect of adding FSU) is able to remind the university presidents that there still needs to be football branding on top of collecting large metro areas and research institutions.

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

(Image from Washington Post)

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Comments
  1. Penn State Danny says:

    It does feel that things are gaining traction. Maybe the Dude did know something! Yikes!

  2. Kyle Peter says:

    Hope we grab them all.

  3. ChicagoMac says:

    Everything depends on FSU.

    The MD-ACC lawsuit is a red herring. UVA and GT wavering.is inconsequential.

    Its all about FSU. The moment FSU decides its competitive position vis-a-vis its SEC rivals is significantly enhanced by moving conferences the ACC is done.

    ESPN can hold the ACC together as long as FSU stays on board. It can always cause the per school payout to be competitive with other conferences. That is pretty easy for ESPN even if the ACC gets skunked in the MD lawsuit, ESPN would just have to write a bigger check if the worst case happens on that $52MM payout.

    I really don’t think money matters in this game, I think it all boils down to FSU and perception. Specifically, what is the perception of the ACC as a football conference going to be in 5 or 10 years? Living in the ACC, can FSU still sell recruits that its in the major leagues if it lives in the ACC?

    If FSU decides its going to stay then they’ll circle the wagons and the ACC will live on. If FSU decides to go then the ACC will be carved up faster than a Yellowfin Tuna at the Tsukiji Market.

    Reply

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      I do not think ESPN is willing to pay enough to keep the ACC whole. They did pay up to keep the Big XII intact, but the income disparity has grown, and even ESPN does not have the resources to keep paying substantially more for things than they are worth.

      • metatron says:

        The idea is that ESPN would lock up ACC rights even longer, and more importantly, make sure they’re worth something by keeping Florida State onboard. Without the Seminoles, the ACC will really be devalued and ESPN’s deal is worthless.

        Besides, with the Big East all but dead, there’s surely enough money to shift around.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          Oh, I understand the purported idea. I just don’t think the math works. You can’t run a business by consistently paying far more for things than they are worth.

          Without the Seminoles, the ACC will really be devalued and ESPN’s deal is worthless.

          That deal almost certainly has provisions to allow it to be renegotiated or exited entirely if there is a substantial change of membership. (Besides, the ACC will survive in some form: it will become what the Big East used to be, plus Wake Forest.)

          • ccrider55 says:

            “You can’t run a business by consistently paying far more for things than they are worth.”

            They aren’t going to lose money, perhaps their profit may be lower than they’d like. Besides, that may not be the calculation. Perhaps, as with keeping the B12 alive, the cost of not helping the ACC may be considerably higher than the cost of helping in the longer view.

          • metatron says:

            The ACC will survive, but ESPN would be the bagholder.

            The cost of paying more to Florida State and the ACC might well cost ESPN less in the long run, versus letting the Big Ten/SEC consolidate all the capital and bargain from a stronger position. This is to say nothing of the Big Ten Network, an actual competitor to ESPN.

          • bullet says:

            I don’t know that I agree with this. FSU hurts. But there is still Miami and Virginia Tech. I saw someone who claimed to work in the ACC office (and he seemed pretty credible) say the ACC would just move on w/o FSU (but he didn’t believe they would leave). If only FSU and Louisville or Georgia Tech left, I could see the ACC surviving. Now if Clemson or Miami or VT joined FSU it would all be over. If UVA and UNC leave with or without FSU leaving, everyone will quickly head for the exits.

          • metatron says:

            Miami’s about to have the hammer come down on them.

          • ChicagoMac says:

            @bullett

            If it leaves, its highly unlikely that FSU is going to leave by itself so its essentially a given that another of the football powers leaves with it. That is part of the calculus here.

            If that were to happen the ACC as a football conference has a major issue. The schools that are left, UNC and VT for example, are going to be faced with the reality of not seriously competing for the National Championship or they will try and jump to one of the other 4 conferences that do have access to the Championship. Faced with that choice, I think anyone that can jump takes that opportunity. That is why, in my estimation, it really is FSU that holds the key to the conference’s future.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            The schools that are left, UNC and VT for example, are going to be faced with the reality of not seriously competing for the National Championship or they will try and jump to one of the other 4 conferences that do have access to the Championship.

            UNC has never so much as sniffed a national championship in football, unless you count their #3 finish in the AP poll in 1948. In the BCS era, they haven’t even concluded a season in the top 25. VT is a better football school, but has never made it to the BCS championship game; with a four-team playoff, their path gets easier.

            The main issue with these schools is not competing for the national championship, but facing a perpetual disadvantage in television revenue, due to the lack of entertaining games in their league.

          • ChicagoMac says:

            @ Marc Shephard

            I don’t know when TV influence started to weigh heavily on these decisions but I do know that everything the ACC has done pursuant to conference affiliation for about the last 35 years has been pro-football.

            For me that is enough evidence to suggest that at least collectively, the ACC has long viewed competing nationally in football as a priority. Individual schools may see things differently but I have a very strong suspicion that an ACC without FSU is going to look very unattractive relative to their other options for a school like UNC.

            As I see it the biggest reason to stay right now is Tradition. When you consider that the denizens of Tobacco Road had to hold their noses to invite Louisville and is are now suffering from the ignominy of receiving Valentine’s Day cards from Cincinnati, well I doubt we are more than one or two steps away from those schools waving the white flag on the whole charade.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            @ChicagoMac: I totally agree that football drives everything. But it’s regular-season football and the bowl slate overall, not national championship access.

            That’s why the Big Ten is the wealthiest conference, despite only 3 BCS championship game appearances (all by one school) and only one win.

          • ChicagoMac says:

            @Marc Shephard

            Its about managing risk. As soon as it is riskier to stay than it is to move, schools are going to move.

            We may already be at that moment for UVA and GT, for the rest of the ACC, the tipping point is when FSU decides it can no longer stay in the ACC.

          • cfn_ms says:

            @Marc: FSU beat VA Tech in the BCS title game in the late 90′s.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            Sorry…my error (re: VT).

          • Brian says:

            Marc Shepherd,

            “UNC has never so much as sniffed a national championship in football, unless you count their #3 finish in the AP poll in 1948.”

            Not true. At the end of Mack Brown’s tenure, they were competing to unseat FSU and win a title. In 1997 they went 11-1 with a loss to FSU in a hyped November game and ended up #6. That’s sniffing a title to me.

            “VT is a better football school, but has never made it to the BCS championship game;”

            VT played FSU in the 1999 title game aka the 2000 Sugar Bowl.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            I had definitely forgotten that VT season. Leaving aside whether UNC “sniffed” the title (one can always debate what word describes a particular aberrent season), the real thrust is that 95 percent of schools are not particularly concerned with whether they’ll play for the title (a rare or entirely non-existent occurrence for most of them), but rather about predictable, recurring revenues. That is why reaching the Rose Bowl was, for so many years, far more important to most of the Big Ten presidents than instituting a playoff. And it’s why the Big Ten is so wealthy, even though 11 of its 12 teams have never made it to a BCS championship game.

    • Brian says:

      It would be cheaper for ESPN to make a side deal with MD. Get MD to agree to the full ACC exit fee but secretly pay it for them through shell companies and back alleys.

      • ChicagoMac says:

        A good point but perhaps unrealistic? This seems like a pretty big political issue in MD which would seem to make it unlikely a side deal like that would stay a secret. If it were to be exposed that would weaken the ACC’s case in future exit fee battles.

        I still don’t think it matters. FSU has to decide this spring if it wants to stay in the ACC or not.

    • only1halen says:

      If there is any chance all, Jim Delany should target the Univ of Florida.

      • BruceMcF says:

        Opinions vary one whether the University of Florida is a zero percent change or a chance under 0.1%. But its surely too small a chance to justify investing a lot of time and effort into it.

      • Tom says:

        Stupid. The SEC would simply pick up FSU within a nanosecond and gator fans would burn Gainesville to the ground. Of all of the insane expansion scenarios, uf to the B1G is at the top. Ain’t gonna happen.

      • frug says:

        You are right, if there were any chance at all. And there’s not.

      • JD says:

        The schools in the SEC have no reason to leave. They are just like those in the B1G – academically successful, well funded, and set with traditional rivals. The B1G has no reason to waste the time or money trying to get any of these schools to join. The B1G should actually ditch the Pac- (whatever it is now) and focus on dealing with the SEC for annual bowl games. Michigan vs. Florida, OSU vs. Alabama, Nebraska vs. Texas A&M, PSU vs. Tennessee, Wisconsin vs. LSU. I’d love to see these teams go at it on a regular basis.

  4. Richard says:

    Agree on FSU, Frank. If FSU is added (either in a Big18 or Big20), it’s fairly easy to guarantee all schools an average of 2 kings a year (and thus at least 1 king visiting your home stadium) on the schedule, which is the bare minimum that I believe is acceptable as that’s what the B10 had in the “Big 2, Little 8″ days. With 18 schools, only 4 kings, and protected games, however, it’s much harder to get all schools an average of 2 kings on the schedule a year.

    • Blapples says:

      I count 5 kings in that hypothetical 18-20. Who are you not considering a king? Penn State or Nebraska? Penn State is already weathering the sanctions better than most predicted.

      • @Blapples – I think Richard is pointing out the issue of not adding another king like FSU but still going up to 18.

      • pete rose says:

        How are the 80′s? i hear they are nice this time of year.
        penn state has been an under performing also ran since they joined the b1g 20+ years ago. #2 in fan base, #2 in financial support, #40 in recruit rankings and a nice solid ~17th average on the field. I guess Fordham is a ‘King’ too?

        • gregenstein says:

          “How are the 80′s? i hear they are nice this time of year.”
          ——————————–
          The 80′s are great, and yes this time of year is fabulous for them. I was just listening to “I Wanna Dance with Somebody,” “Livin’ on a Prayer,” and “With or Without You” just last night. Even mixed in Madonna and Robbie Neville. Fabulous home improvement background music. I may have even heard Dexy’s Midnight Runners.

          “#2 in fan base, #2 in financial support”
          ———————————
          Even if I concede this point, which I’m not, that’s still a “king” as it puts them either ahead of Michigan or Ohio State, depending on who you are claiming as #1.

          “#40 in recruit rankings and a nice solid ~17th average on the field”
          ———————————
          What does this have to do with being a King? Kings fill stadiums pretty much regardless of recruit rankings and on the field performance. Notre Dame is a King despite being largely irrelevant for the past 25 years too, outside of last year.

          ” I guess Fordham is a ‘King’ too?”
          ——————————–
          I don’t know, you didn’t list their rankings in fan base, financial support, recruitment, or on-the-field performance. Since you have access to such numbers, please share.

    • bullet says:

      But how do you split the divisions with that group of 18?

      • Richard says:

        No divisions.
        3 (or 4) protected series.
        Play the rest equally (9 or 10 conference games).

      • Brian says:

        Adding UVA, UNC, GT and FSU?

        W – NE, WI, IA, MN, NW, IL, PU, IN, OSU
        E – FSU, GT, UNC, UVA, MD, RU, PSU, MI, MSU

        Lock OSU/MI and nothing else. Go to 10 games, and play an 8-2 schedule (8-1-1 for OSU and MI). No other split makes sense unless people come around on Inner/Outer.

        Or try pods:
        W – NE, WI, IA, MN
        N – MI, MSU, NW, PU, IN
        E – OSU, PSU, RU, MD, IL
        S – FSU, GT, UNC, UVA

        Again, go to 10 games and play 8-2 except for locking OSU/MI (they play 8-1-1).

    • Brian says:

      Richard,

      Even with 4 kings it’s pretty easy to average 2 kings per team at 18 or 20. Static divisions would have at least 2 kings in each if people used their brains (somehow the B10 will fail to achieve this with only 14 teams). Pods would have 1 king in each pod.

  5. Blapples says:

    I trust that Delany knows what he is doing. However, if their end game is 18-20, and they don’t add FSU, this will be a failure. It could blow up in their faces even with them.

    • frug says:

      Not sure how this could blow up in their faces. The only (plausible) scenario where they don’t make more money is if the cable sports bubble has burst by 2016, but if they could happen even if they stay put.

      • bullet says:

        The original schools could get unhappy about not playing each other often enough. The TV deal could be less than expected. You could see a group splitting off. I think if they go to 20 it happens. May take 20 or 30 years, but split happens. Just too difficult to keep that type of group together when some of you never see each other except at the conference meetings.

        Every other conference that’s gone to 16 or higher has quickly split. You have differing objectives, differing cultures, differing finances, differing values, differing geography.

        And everyone has a lot fewer conference titles.

        • Blapples says:

          Yep, bullet nailed it. I was also referencing the fact that if you go from 12 team to 18 or 20 without adding AT LEAST one king then you are seriously harming your on-field product and killing your SOS for the new playoff.

          • vp19 says:

            If the presidents prefer to have Duke as #18 instead of Florida State, you can whine all you want. It won’t change anything.

          • While UNC/UVA/UMD/Rutgers are far from football powers, I think they have had reasonable successes the past decade. GaTech is probably a notch above those 4. But Duke is far below. FSU together WITH Duke might be palatable for all parties though.

            One more spot left then…hmm…who could that BE?

          • FranktheAg says:

            Using the WAC experience to predict the future is probably going to miss the mark.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          You’re talking about some pretty unlikely scenarios.

          The original schools could get unhappy about not playing each other often enough.

          I think they’ve been talking about this for a long time. Whether we like the idea or not, it’s unlikely that they failed to realize this.

          Just too difficult to keep that type of group together when some of you never see each other except at the conference meetings.

          That’s why I think they would adopt a schedule where everyone plays everyone reasonably often; rather than a schedule where you’ve got “old Big Ten” and “new Big Ten,” and some schools don’t play each other for years at a time.

          Every other conference that’s gone to 16 or higher has quickly split.

          There aren’t a lot of conferences that have gone to 16, so to say “they’ve all quickly split” is a pretty meaningless statement.

          • bullet says:

            Southern Conference twice (SEC and ACC came out of it), Great Northwest, Lone Star, WAC, Big East. Not exactly meaningless.

            Missouri Valley hasn’t gone to 16, but it overexpanded twice and disentegrated (Big 8 formed from it and much of the original CUSA was in MVC in late 60s/early 70s and left). In the early 70s MVC moved to 12 and they were talking about it as the first superconference. With Cincinnati, Louisville, Memphis, New Mexico St., St. Louis, Drake, Bradley and others, it was a basketball powerhouse at the time. Most of the schools left shortly thereafter.

          • Brian says:

            Marc Shepherd,

            “I think they’ve been talking about this for a long time. Whether we like the idea or not, it’s unlikely that they failed to realize this.”

            If the B10 has shown anything lately, it’s that they don’t understand their own fans. Division names, moving OSU/MI, adding RU and MD, etc. If they press hard enough, the fans will revolt and they won’t see it coming. Ratings, attendance and donations will all drop and the COPC will wonder why. They aren’t normal people and they don’t understand regular people very well.

        • buckskin says:

          Anything above 14 is effectively 2 conferences even with 10 conference games but the powers in the league know that. Schools only leave conferences for one reason – money. Even a 20 team league is viable as long as the bottom doesn’t fall out of ESPN/Fox television contracts.

          As a Buckeye fan I’d be ok with an Eastern Division of Rutgers/Va/Maryland/NC/GaTech/PSU/Mich/OSU/Ind. While I’d miss games vs Iowa I wouldn’t be that broken up about it. I’d bet the fans of most teams would adjust faster than you think.

          • Brian says:

            I would never accept that division. I’ll stop watching OSU before I watch those division games.

          • Which is why “pods” can work better going forward for a mega-conference, not divisions. I don’t want to see my PSU play in the weak part of ACC (no VaTech, Miami, or FSU). I’ve grown accustomed to most of the Big Ten schools. Even I agree with Brian’s sentiment as a loyal OSU fan.

            But even if PSU got put in a pod with a few ACC schools, the knowledge that their Out-of-pod games would include various Big Ten schools would make me happy.

          • BruceMcF says:

            Fricking Indiana? Only two other actual Big Ten teams in the conference and you want us to be stuck with fricking Indiana?

            This is the kind of alignment that inspires people speculating on expansion to play around with some varient of the WAC’s quads system ~ the realization that in the name of expansion, the Buckeyes might end up being flogged off to the all new ACC-Plus, essentially leaving the Big Ten as such, but being allowed to keep using the brand.

            If that’s the alignment, then feel free to put Purdue in the East with Fricking Indiana and swap the Buckeyes to the west. Sure the locked game with TSUN means we wouldn’t play Penn State as much, which would upset the bean counters, but as for me, it was a nice couple of decades having Penn State in the Big Ten as such, be seeing you in the the occasional “Big Ten Branded” OOD game. as well as whenever we might happen to meet the ACC-Plus division champion in the “Big Ten Branded” Championship Game.

        • frug says:

          The original schools could get unhappy about not playing each other often enough.

          If you grow large enough the original schools can play each other as often as they do now.

          The TV deal could be less than expected.

          As I noted above, that could happen anyways.

          Just too difficult to keep that type of group together when some of you never see each other except at the conference meetings.

          They would still play in BB and other sports.

          Plus, as long as they are all making more money working together than they would split it wouldn’t matter.

          Every other conference that’s gone to 16 or higher has quickly split. You have differing objectives, differing cultures, differing finances, differing values, differing geography.

          They would all have the same objective; represent the school and make as much money as possible. Their cultures and values of the proposed schools is the same as the current schools (they’re all elite research universities that care about the academic side of athletic alignment). Geography doesn’t matter much in modern college athletics and there are already massive financial disparities in the Big Ten (look at the budgets of tOSU and Northwestern) and it has created any issues.

          • bullet says:

            There’s only one Northwestern. Now.

            Its easier to deal with the money with 10 or 12 than if there are 20. There’s also diminishing returns. There are only 3 time slots a day, so you are televising opposite yourself. You slice up your audience smaller and smaller. They are trying to expand with schools that mostly don’t have a great football pedigree, so its doubtful UVA, UNC, Duke and GT expand the audience enough.

          • frug says:

            There’s only one Northwestern. Now.

            And?

            There’s also diminishing returns.

            That I agree with, if for no other reason than you have to split the CCG revenue more ways. That said, diminishing returns doesn’t automatically mean you lose money.

            There are only 3 time slots a day, so you are televising opposite yourself. You slice up your audience smaller and smaller.

            That’s what regionalized coverage is for.

            They are trying to expand with schools that mostly don’t have a great football pedigree, so its doubtful UVA, UNC, Duke and GT expand the audience enough.

            I would have agreed with you 6 months ago, but if the Big Ten is convinced it can turn a profit on Rutgers I don’t see any reason why those schools would be losers.

          • Brian says:

            bullet,

            Maybe they count on these new schools not adding much to FB. The FB TV slots are mostly full but they can add a lot of quality programming for winter and spring. When they add a good FB game, great. Otherwise throw it on BTN7 for the locals to watch.

  6. Purduemoe says:

    Boiler up!

  7. REW says:

    UNC and UVA are the schools

  8. Kitchensink says:

    It’s very easy to be hung up on things like “4 super conferences” or nice round conference numbers like 16 and 20…or to complain about losing traditional rivalries. We all want to make this fit in an easy to digest bucket or label, but at the end of the day, I think that this is about the conference CEO looking for “acquisitions” to increase the overall value of the business and increase the return to the “owners” (I.e. the b1G schools). Just as banks and airlines are consolidating, conferences will as well. When identifying potential targets, market size, acedemics, institutional fit, culture, are all considered…just like they are considered when businesses merge.

    I can see a scenario in which the b1G takes BC, UVA, GT, UNC, Duke, FSU, Vandy and Miami..maybe even Florida….then looks west to Kansas and possibly Oklahoma and Texas. Why not grow to 25 or 30 teams and own content that will have interest nationally and rival the NCAA. Forget about competing with the SEC, this is about making a play for the dollars going to the NCAA for national tournaments, sponsorships, media rights. Etc. The research dollars, TV rights dollars, etc will be huge.

    • vp19 says:

      You are substantially overvaluing Boston College. As SEC-oriented as Atlanta is, Georgia Tech would have far more impact in that market than BC would in metro Boston.

    • bullet says:

      Never forget. The substantial majority of schools’ revenues are NOT from TV. Over-expansion may put the rest at risk.

      • frug says:

        The substantial majority of schools’ revenues are NOT from TV.

        That is only partly true. It is accurate for schools like Texas and Florida, but for schools like Northwestern TV money makes up close to half their athletic budget.

        • frug says:

          And I’ll add that even schools where TV money doesn’t make up an actual majority of the AD budget at many it will still be the single largest contributor.

    • Brian says:

      Vandy and UF aren’t leaving the SEC. That’s as bad as saying OSU will leave for the SEC.

    • skeptic says:

      you had 4 kings, a couple queens, and an already nationwide presence/revenue model, with 12 schools.

      it almost appears as if the B10 conference is acting as a separate entity from the legacy schools that made it up. (or should i say, the B10 conference and News Corp).

      if with their blessing, then i see that as a big mistake on the part of the legacy schools.

      as the conference gets larger, conference revenues get larger, and the conference as a whole and commissioner gain power. (and News Corp gains rights and revenues, without ever having to win a bid).

      but that doesn’t mean the legacy schools are better off, financially or otherwise, when everything is broken down per school

      unless an added school or set of schools could move the B10′s national meter, not just their region, proportionally more than the added shares of the pie they will take, (which they can’t), the legacy B10 schools will be worse off financially than had they stayed at 12,

      and take a big hit on the sovereignty front as well.

      whether the B10 stays with a similar rights model as the current Disney one, for future higher tier rights,

      or pursues a sub fee based one, as with BTN and current lower tier rights,

      regardless, with either scenario, it’s difficult to see how expansion benefits the legacy schools more than it hurts them.

      • BruceMcF says:

        “unless an added school or set of schools could move the B10′s national meter, not just their region, proportionally more than the added shares of the pie they will take, (which they can’t), the legacy B10 schools will be worse off financially than had they stayed at 12, …”

        The ‘not just their region’ is not a useful filter here ~ UVA, UNC and FSU would each carry more than their own weight, even if they add up their numbers in different ways. Tier1 broadcast network rights may be the most lucrative per football game, but in deals with split broadcast/cable rights, the Tier2 cable rights have been more total, and the strong regional appeal moves the needle on value to cable networks. And as far as the BTN income, its regional appeal that matters the most.

        OTOH, add GTech and Duke as a pair to reach 16, and yes, the ten legacy Big Ten schools and the two more established entrants might be worse off than without adding them. Either GTech or Duke are “even” schools, to take one or three adds and make them an even two or four.

        • skeptic says:

          “The ‘not just their region’ is not a useful filter here ~ UVA, UNC and FSU would each carry more than their own weight, even if they add up their numbers in different ways. Tier1 broadcast network rights may be the most lucrative per football game, but in deals with split broadcast/cable rights, the Tier2 cable rights have been more total, and the strong regional appeal moves the needle on value to cable networks. And as far as the BTN income, its regional appeal that matters the most”.

          flat not true, neither UVA, nor UNC, nor UMd, nor RU, carry their own weight by moving their state to within the footprint. (and spare me the RU flipping NYC, even with YES, fairy tale).

          do the math, they don’t even come close to covering.

          and FSU can barely cover, if and only if it could flip the entire state of Fla to paying “in footprint” BTN fees.

          and highly unlikely that FSU can flip the entire state of Fla, or even most of it. (nor could GT flip much of Ga).

          especially considering that Disney and the SEC are planning to launch an SEC Network.

          and BTN revenues have not yet surpassed tier 1 revenues. (not that it would matter).

          if they do in the near future, it will be a short lived phenomena that will cease when the tier 1 rights are redone in a few yrs.

          • Brian says:

            skeptic,

            “flat not true, neither UVA, nor UNC, nor UMd, nor RU, carry their own weight by moving their state to within the footprint. (and spare me the RU flipping NYC, even with YES, fairy tale).

            do the math, they don’t even come close to covering.”

            1 cable household = $1/mo = $12/year
            85% of all households have cable/satellite/whatever

            Thus, 1 household equals $10 per year.

            http://www.tvb.org/media/file/Cable_UEs_by_State.pdf
            NJ = 3.2M households = $32M
            MD = 2.2M = $22M = $23.3M with half of DC
            DC = 0.27M = $2.7M
            VA = 3.1M = $31M = $32.3M with half of DC
            NC = 3.8M = $38M

            That’s a rough estimate of just their value to the BTN from subscription fees, half of which the B10 gets. Then there is advertising revenue. Then there is the increase in the tier 1 package values due to the larger footprint and any improvement in the inventory. Then there is the value of increased inventory for the BTN. Then there is the CIC value. Then there is increased bowl/playoff money. Then there is increased NCAA tournament shares.

            Tell me again how none of these schools come close to covering, please.

          • BruceMcF says:

            And its not either/or ~ value is cumulative. Its quite possible for UNC to only cover half of its weight with BTN revenues, only cover half of its weight with the value football adds to Tier 1 and Tier 2 rights, and only cover half of its weight with the incremental value it brings to Tier 2 Big Ten basketball … and still more than cover its weight.

            For UNC, it seems likely to more than carry its weight with expected incremental value for BTN revenues and incremental value for Big Ten basketball Tier 2 rights … any extra value in Tier 2 football contracts would be gravy.

            Remember that with the BTN, the Big Ten is not getting a rights payment, it is getting a share of net revenues, and a substantial portion of fixed costs for a 12 school BTN are common to a 16 or 18 team BTN. Since its past break-even, a substantial share of its incremental gross revenue will be incremental net revenue.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            @skeptic: do the math, they don’t even come close to covering.

            Jim Delany has a full-time professional staff doing the math. You’re a hobbyist on a fan message board. Whose math do you think I believe?

          • bullet says:

            The math in acquisitions is to verify the decision, to disprove it if it is really bad or to renegotiate price. Acquisitions are essentially done by the instinct of the leaders. And all the math is based on assumptions which can get tilted based on what decision the leaders want. Sometimes the leaders don’t care what the math says. There’s either a strong instinctive feeling that its right or its simply ego.

            In the B1G’s case, its based on TV consultants giving them guesses on what will happen in a rapidly changing industry. The Big East is one conference that has guessed horribly wrong.

            You certainly can be justified in having more faith in Delany’s crew than a message board poster, but if you have blind faith that Delany’s crew is getting it right, you obviously don’t have any experience in how acquisitions really work.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            @bullet: I do not have blind faith in Delany’s math (and by the way, I have done quite a few acquisitions and know how they work). But @skeptic didn’t give any math at all. In the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king, and Delany at least has one eye, if not more.

          • Matt says:

            I disagree, skeptic. FSU by itself might not deliver the state of Florida, but don’t forget about all the B1G alumni in the state. FSU fans + B1G alumni will deliver the state for the BTN.

          • BruceMcF says:

            Florida is a state of 19m people. It is not NECESSARY for FSU to deliver the whole state for FSU to more than carry its weight. Plus FSU adds value as a national brand in both Tier 1 and Tier 2 contract negotiations.

  9. [...] but where there is smoke, there is fire. The big realignment pundits are all over this, including Frank the Tank. He paints a fairly pessimistic picture, basically saying “I’ll believe it when I see [...]

  10. Michael says:

    What is the point of being in a ‘conference’ of 18 or 20 teams? Here, we’re talking about 9- or 10- team divisions, meaning 8- or 9- games a season simply against your division, which is what you used to play against a conference. In an 8-game division schedule, how many games do you play against the other division?

    If we’re putting Florida State, UNC-Chapel Hill, University of Virginia, and Georgia Tech in the Big Ten East, they’re joining Maryland, Rutgers, and who else? Ohio State and Penn State? Meaning the rest of the B1G just lost Ohio State and Penn State?

    I’m a West Coast guy, so this isn’t making much sense to me, logistically. And in the bigger scheme of things, if that goes down, then what happens to the other conferences? Grant of Rights means the Big XII doesn’t change except to add, meaning the PAC doesn’t have anyone to add; ACC doesn’t disappear but becomes the new Big East; SEC takes whomever they deem desirable remaining from the ACC? Not sure what the end game is to this yet.

    • JohnCassillo says:

      At this point, conference expansion is less about logistics and more about property value. So the Big Ten is expanding so they have more inventory to sell out to television partners and their own network. Nothing else. Delaney and the rest of the conference leadership don’t appear to be concerned with how well institutions “fit,” or how easily the league can continue to function. I’d think the end game for the B1G (and possibly the SEC too) would be to expand to the size of two conferences, allowing an easier path for at least one team to get to the playoff. That way, they get paid and continue to grow their respective footprint.

      This doesn’t seem like the cleanest way to do all this, but without starting from scratch, that’s really not an option.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      What is the point of being in a ‘conference’ of 18 or 20 teams? Here, we’re talking about 9- or 10- team divisions, meaning 8- or 9- games a season simply against your division, which is what you used to play against a conference. In an 8-game division schedule, how many games do you play against the other division?

      I think everyone agrees that once you get to 18-20 teams, you no longer have static divisions, because even with 10 conference games, you’d hardly ever see the other half of the league. It would really be more like two leagues with a scheduling deal.

      So at 18-20, you’d either re-shuffle the divisions every year or two, or get the rule abolished that requires you to have divisions at all. Some way or other, they’d arrange it so that everyone plays everyone with acceptable frequency.

      This is not an argument in favor of 18-20, just explaining how it could work.

      • ccrider55 says:

        “It would really be more like two leagues with a scheduling deal.”

        Almost. Difference being you have control and don’t have to depend on the whims of another conference (see: B1G/PAC alliance).

        • bullet says:

          But you really don’t have control. The invaders are already inside the gates. With an alliance you have to work with the other guys, but internally you have a lot more flexibility.

    • frug says:

      Not sure what the end game is to this yet.

      The end game is actually pretty clear and has been for (at least) two years; increasing consolidation of power by the top conferences leading to the top 64-80 schools breaking away from the present NCAA structure (at least in FB and MBB) and uniting (at least loosely) into a “single super conference”.

    • Richard says:

      You’re assuming
      1. Divisions.
      2. 8 conference games (almost certain to be more).

    • Andy says:

      “If we’re putting Florida State, UNC-Chapel Hill, University of Virginia, and Georgia Tech in the Big Ten East, they’re joining Maryland, Rutgers, and who else? Ohio State and Penn State? Meaning the rest of the B1G just lost Ohio State and Penn State?”

      Michael gets it.

      • Richard says:

        Nah, Michael (and you) aren’t willing to think outside the box.

        No divisions are required.

      • BruceMcF says:

        Yes, there you have in a nutshell the argument for eastern and western anchor groups and two swing groups in the middle ~ unlike static divisions, it guarantees that “the rest of the Big Ten” either gets OSU and Penn State annually, or else OSU and Penn State in alternating home and home cycles.

  11. Kitchen Sink says:

    It’s very easy to be hung up on things like “4 super conferences” or nice round conference numbers like 16 and 20…or to complain about losing traditional rivalries. We all want to make this fit in an easy to digest bucket or label, but at the end of the day, I think that this is about the conference CEO looking for “acquisitions” to increase the overall value of the business and increase the return to the “owners” (I.e. the b1G schools). Just as banks and airlines are consolidating, conferences will as well. When identifying potential targets, market size, acedemics, institutional fit, culture, are all considered…just like they are considered when businesses merge.

    I can see a scenario in which the b1G takes BC, UVA, GT, UNC, Duke, FSU, Vandy and Miami..maybe even Florida….then looks west to Kansas and possibly Oklahoma and Texas. Why not grow to 25 or 30 teams and own content that will have interest nationally and rival the NCAA. Forget about competing with the SEC, this is about making a play for the dollars going to the NCAA for national tournaments, sponsorships, media rights. Etc. The research dollars, TV rights dollars, etc will be huge.

    • buckskin says:

      I agree with your sentiments but the list of teams isn’t realistic. No team is going to leave the SEC and the B1G won’t take private schools like BC, Duke, or Miami or poor academic schools that add little value like Kansas and Oklahoma. The NC/Va/GaTech moves are to lock up the North East and they can do by taking a few schools from the ACC. The Big 12 and SEC will do the rest leaving the remaining North East football schools without a home. This will mean in 20 years schools like Syracuse and Boston College will be as relevant as Princeton in football as their product on the field slowly slides to become the equivalent of AAA in baseball.

      • zeek says:

        Duke is a reasonable possibility even though it is a private school. They’re a legit basketball king which means they probably carry their own weight in BTN revenue potential enough to justify adding them alongside UNC (higher $ rates in North Carolina markets and up/down the coast).

        • BruceMcF says:

          Because its basketball that they are a power in, they likely don’t carry ALL of their own weight, but they carry some of their own weight, and so could be reasonably be expected to pair up with ANY of UVA, UNC or FSU as a pair that would more than carry its own weight.

          • Brian says:

            Don’t forget the value of tournament credits. They’re worth about $250k per year for 6 years, and you earn 1 for every tournament game except the NCG.

            Credits for Duke:
            2012 – 1
            2011 – 3
            2010 – 5
            2009 – 3
            2008 – 2
            2007 – 1
            2006 – 3
            2005 – 3
            2004 – 4
            2003 – 3
            Average = 2.8/year

            Value = $4.2M/year

            Add the increase in the tier 1 hoops deal, the value to the BTN of all those hoops games and non-revenue sports (lacrosse, etc), as well as increased BTN subscriptions in NYC. Now add CIC value. How sure are you that they don’t carry their weight?

          • BruceMcF says:

            @ Brian: As far as the CIC, I’m talking about carrying their weight in terms of conference payout ~ the CIC is one substantial reason why the Big Ten could well prefer them despite diluting the conference payout.

            As far as NCAA units, yes, that’s certainly part of why Duke would be expected increase gross revenue, although probably not an increment in gross revenue equal to their conference payout (though past performance is no guarantee of future returns, yadda, yadda, yadda).

            The concentration of media value in the NCAA tournament is pretty much why Duke doesn’t carry their own weight. They surely would carry their own weight in terms of general media value, but the majority of college basketball media value is diverted to fund other things (including subsidizing football via the NCAA athletic scholarship subsidy). If, to take one scenario, the big schools forced concessions on NCAA tournament income in return for not breaking big time college football out of the NCAA, those NCAA units could easily double or tiple, and the massive weight given to football in conference realignment would give way to a greater balance between football and basketball.

          • Brian says:

            BruceMcF,

            “@ Brian: As far as the CIC, I’m talking about carrying their weight in terms of conference payout ~ the CIC is one substantial reason why the Big Ten could well prefer them despite diluting the conference payout.”

            Fair enough. I’m just saying there are multiple ways to carry your weight overall. IN adds value via hoops, NW through academics and non-revenue sports, etc. Duke is NW with IN’s hoops. If you don’t think Duke can pay their own way, what about the current 14 members? How many of them would you say carry their own weight?

          • frug says:

            @Brian

            Actually, to be honest Northwestern doesn’t carry their own weight (at least financially). They clearly being subsidized by the other 11 schools.

            As for the others? Purdue and Minnesota definitely benefit more from being in a conference with OSU and UM than the vice-versa, but the public schools all bring more to the table than they take away.

          • ccrider55 says:

            That sounds like B12 talk…

          • frug says:

            @ccrider

            It’s true of all major conferences. The SEC schools are subsidizing Vandy and MSU, the ACC is subsidizing Wake and possibly BC, the PAC is subsidizing Wazzu and probably Oregon St and the Big XII is subsidizing ISU, Baylor and TTU.

          • Brian says:

            frug,

            “Actually, to be honest Northwestern doesn’t carry their own weight (at least financially).”

            Even after considering academics and their value to the CIC? Are you accounting for the games they host against the bigger names that boost the value of the inventory?

            “As for the others? Purdue and Minnesota definitely benefit more from being in a conference with OSU and UM than the vice-versa, but the public schools all bring more to the table than they take away.”

            How does PU carry their weight but Duke doesn’t? IU brings all the IN homes to the BTN by itself. Duke is a hoops king, PU isn’t. Duke is better in research. Where is the edge for PU? Their mediocre football? How does that bring value?

          • ccrider55 says:

            Frug:

            Perhaps i read denegration where there was none? Yes, in any conference that engages in any sharing of income those in the lower half are being perhaps subsidized, definitely assisted, by those above. But if you believe that the whole is greater than the sum of the parts then even the “bottom” schools are contributing to everyone’s increase (even the top).

          • frug says:

            @Brian

            I never said Duke wouldn’t carry their weight. They would be at least a break even number.

            Yes, Northwestern contributes to the CIC, but Nothwestern’s academic value isn’t nearly as far ahead of the rest of the Big Ten (especially at the graduate level) as their athletic value is behind. And if the Big Ten just wanted more inventory they could have got far more value by swapping NU for someone like Missouri or Kansas who would deliver new markets and draw more national attention.

            Now, that said, I am not in way, shape or form suggesting the Big Ten should dump Northwestern. At most they cost the other schools $1 million each and that is no where near enough money to throw away 115 years of tradition.

            @ccrider

            I’m not denigrating Northwestern, and I certainly don’t think that the Big Ten would be better off dumping them.

            As for your greater point, I do believe that, generally speaking, there is strength in numbers and (overall) the whole is greater than the sum of the parts when it comes to athletic conferences, but that doesn’t mean some parts aren’t still dragging down the rest of the conference. Wazzu (for example) continues to sell home games despite the fact the PAC banned schools like Oregon and USC from playing in one off neutral site games, even though the net effect of both actions is the same (the conference loses broadcast rights to a game so one school can pocket a check).

            To put it in sabremetric terms, every conference has a “replacement level” which would be the amount of value a random “scrub level” school (say the most valuable school that would join without hesitation) and anything below that would be subsidized. For the PAC (again as an example) the scrub level school would probably be UNLV, and it is safe to say the PAC would make more money by swapping WSU for UNLV.

            Again, if I don’t mean to denigrate any schools (and if any Northwestern alums like Richard want to chime in, I’m happy to hear what they have to say) but that’s how I see it.

  12. stuart says:

    Just stop. If the B1G cease to be Midwestern, then I cease to care about it. AN Ohio State schedule full of Maryland, Rutgers, Georgia Tech, Virginia, and whatever else south of the Mason-Dixon, before New Years (or before the B1G season) has zero interest to me.

    The rivalries are what make it compelling. These are already in danger and we need a decade at least to absorb Rutgers and Maryland. Dipping south of DC is a huge mistake, and will dilute the product even more.

    • JohnCassillo says:

      Maybe we should just let the Big Ten expand and grab everyone. Then arrange the divisions within the 64-team league to look like the major conferences used to. Problem solved?

      • metatron says:

        Then what’s the damn point?

        • JohnCassillo says:

          Has there ever really been much of a point to all this beyond “money?”

          • metatron says:

            Yes, before the idea of cable subscriber fees turned this into a rent seeking expedition, expansion was about adding big-time programs that people wanted to watch.

            It’s a crazy world when Oklahoma and Florida State are left waiting in line while Rutgers and Maryland are let inside.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Yeah, crazy. Academics, research, and demographics meaning something? Bahh!

          • vp19 says:

            It’s a crazy world when Oklahoma and Florida State are left waiting in line while Rutgers and Maryland are let inside.

            Were this the SEC, you’d be right. But we’re talkin’ Big Ten, where prowess at King Football won’t necessarily allow you to pass scrutiny at the door.

          • frug says:

            @metatron

            It’s not a quest for subscriber fees that is keeping FSU and OU on the outside, it’s academics and conference politics.

        • ccrider55 says:

          Keeping the $$$’s?

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      If the B1G cease to be Midwestern, then I cease to care about it.

      I think Jim Delany is willing to lose you, if he gets the whole state of North Carolina in return.

      • metatron says:

        Which he wouldn’t, and it’ll be far more that stuart that this league looses.

        • Brian says:

          More importantly, the fans he drives off will probably be vehemently anti-B10, not just neutral. They take every opportunity to bad mouth the product, try to convince others not to watch or support it, etc. In exchange, you get lukewarm fans that mostly prefer hoops and aren’t really committed to the B10. You need a pretty high ratio of gains to losses to make that work.

    • frug says:

      The rivalries are what make it compelling. These are already in danger and we need a decade at least to absorb Rutgers and Maryland.

      Ironically, the best way to preserve traditional rivalries would be more expansion.

      If the Big Ten went to 22 they could just stick PSU with Rutgers and the ACC schools and then split into Midwestern and Atlantic divisions.

      • GreatLakeState says:

        That is what’s going to happen, except it will be 20 with Michigan/Penn State going east.

        The Dude is in crisis mode now that his unimpeachable ‘B1G source’ has told him
        UVA/UNC/GT/FSU is a done deal by 2017. This news hit him so hard he had to go on a bike ride to clear his head. That guy REALLY want’s FSU in the B12

        • frug says:

          Nah. If the Big Ten gets those four the ACC will crumble and the Big Ten will grab ND and someone else and toss them both in the Atlantic division.

        • BruceMcF says:

          “The Dude is in crisis mode now that his unimpeachable ‘B1G source’ has told him
          UVA/UNC/GT/FSU is a done deal by 2017. ”

          Remember to use your Dude Decoder Ring: an unimpeachable Big Ten source telling him those four is a done deal translates into normal human speak into an impeachable source with some connection to the Big Ten telling him that there is a faction of the Big Ten that wants UVA/UNC/GTech/FSU.

          (Hell, if I were a Big Ten “insider” I’d put my hand up to be added to that faction.)

  13. mouse says:

    You could preserve rivalries by putting Ohio State in the West and locking the game with Michigan. If, after that game those two would otherwise play again in the conference championship, the loser of that game gets skipped in favor of whatever team is next in line. Should add a bit of interest to The Game.

  14. SpaceTetra says:

    While “there won’t be any moves until there’s clarity in the ongoing Maryland/ACC lawsuit”, the reality is that it won’t be official until the last possible moment that teams need to give the ACC notice of the move. Even if MD wins its lawsuit with the ACC, it will still likely have to pay something. As long as the ACC withholds money from the schools leaving, no one is going to want to trigger that withholding until the last possible moment. Schools will try to minimize the time between when ACC payments end and B1G payments begin.

    • what people seem to be forgetting is that if Maryland wins the lawsuit against the ACC, then expect Oklahoma, Oklahoma St, Kansas, Kansas St. and maybe Iowa St. to challenge and sue over the GOR….Texas barely kept the Big 12 together and it’s far more unstable than the ACC…..and if anybody thinks that the Pac 12 is just going to sit idly by is mistaken….the Pac 12 covets and wants the Oklahoma schools and the Pac 12 isn’t going to expand with MWC/Conf.-USA teams as leftovers……and UNC and UVa ain’t going anywhere……

      • greg says:

        Why the heck would those B12 schools sue over the GOR? Those schools wants to be in the B12, and the GOR is what holds it together. Iowa State, KSU, or OkSU wouldn’t challenge the GOR in a million years.

        The P12 could have had both OK schools a couple years ago and turned them down.

      • Nathan says:

        “the Pac 12 covets and wants the Oklahoma schools”

        Then whey did the Pac 12 tell them “Thank you but no thank you” only a couple of years ago?

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        if Maryland wins the lawsuit against the ACC, then expect Oklahoma, Oklahoma St, Kansas, Kansas St. and maybe Iowa St. to challenge and sue over the GOR….

        Those schools wanted the GOR. Kansas, I think, is the only one of them that might—I stress, might—move if otherwise not constrained.

        You need to bear in mind the basis of the Maryland lawsuit: that the exit fee is punitive. No one has suggested that the GOR is punitive. If it could be invalidated, which I doubt, it would have to be on another legal theory, and I am not sure what that would be.

  15. Kevin says:

    Go BLUE!

  16. [...] proven true, it’s just another round of ACC death hoaxes, so until I see some confirmation from Frank the Tank and/or Brett McMurphy, you can count me a skeptic [...]

  17. jj says:

    Well played Indiana, we still have the better Tom.

    Go State!

  18. Rick says:

    Go B1G Red

  19. B1GRED says:

    Will Miami getting slammed by NCAA change ACC poaching scenarios?

    • Brian says:

      Doubtful. Miami has already absorbed many of the penalties (2 year bowl ban, some scholarship restrictions). Unless they get hit worse than PSU, they’ll be OK soon.

  20. Alan from Baton Rouge says:

    GEAUX LSU Fightin’ Tigers!

  21. Andy says:

    Big win for Mizzou tonight over the Gators. We finally have all our guys healthy.

  22. Craig Z says:

    Go Bucks.

  23. zeek says:

    http://dataomaha.com/documents/husker-recruiting-changes-shrink-nus-sphere-of-influence#husker-recruiting-changes-shrink-nu-s-sphere-of-influence

    Great article out of Omaha by Dirk Chatelain. It pretty much shows why the Big Ten is going for a major East Coast grab.

    • TM says:

      Not a big fan of Dirk. Here’s another perspective with a good interactive graphic.

      http://www.cornnation.com/2013/2/19/4003606/the-500-mile-radius-an-even-greater-obstacle-for-nebraska-football

      • zeek says:

        I don’t think the two takes necessarily disagree, although the Corn Nation article correctly points out that Dirk’s approach might come off as too narrow minded in that Nebraska is simply going to where the talent is in terms of recruiting rather than trying to mine its backyard as hard as it did in Osborne’s days.

        Still, I think both confirm the reasons why the Big Ten is going for a major East Coast grab. That’s where the future recruits and students are.

      • Brian says:

        TM,

        I have a couple of issues with that article.

        First, it assumes that a 500 mile radius applies to all schools. NE can have one that big because it’s a king. Lesser programs have no pull that far away. Also, many schools don’t need a radius that big. Miami can do just fine recruiting in a 50 mile radius. Besides, a staff can only deal with so many recruits. Schools in a hotbed like TX or FL actually don’t want a huge radius like that.

        Second, the circle is a dumb plan anyway. It doesn’t account for geography, population distribution or the locations of other schools. A more realistic area would be all of MT, WY, CO, ND, SD, NE, KS, MN, IA, MO, WI and IL as the core grounds, with NE dominant in all but the B10 states. OK, CA, TX, OH and FL should be recruited selectively. I didn’t add much population for the core, but I did add area. The population comes from the other areas.

        Third, it normalized the recruits. Per capita data is not useful here. It should just be the total number of recruits in the area.

      • C. Toda says:

        Is it possible that the rating source is pro south and all the players ratings are bogas ?

        • zeek says:

          There’s a definite concern that players in other regions are getting overlooked as Southern players get far more attention by recruiting services.

          But it’s also a feedback loop; as major programs like Ohio State and Michigan as well as programs in the Southwest and West go to the South for players, that effect will strengthen.

  24. Andy says:

    In other Mizzou news, Frank Haith recieved a notice of allegations from the NCAA tonight, but no charges of unethical conduct, thus no potential for show cause, so he will continue to be Mizzou’s coach. Looks like it will finally be over soon. That investigation went on for 2 years.

  25. Michael in Raleigh says:

    Jim Delaney would be the big winner in all of this. Fans across the states in the ACC would be the losers, and I’m pretty sure a sizable number of fans across B1G country would feel at a loss, too.

    • zeek says:

      I think Delany drove the bus on Nebraska.

      The more recent East Coast strategy is being more driven by the presidents.

      It intrigued me more than anything when Loh said that Maryland was approached two years ago at AAU meetings by the Big Ten presidents. I’m pretty sure that was at their own direction rather than Delany.

      This grab at 4 more AAUs on the East Coast seems more like a Big Ten president’s dream scenario than Delany’s master plan.

      • GreatLakeState says:

        What makes you think they are mutually exclusive? This notion, perpetuated by a few on here, that the Presidents and Delany are natural adversaries in this process is not born out by the comments of Gee, Brandon and other B1G figures. In fact, they all seem to be on the same page. The primary driving force in expansion is the BTN. A successful BTN benefits everyone from the Presidents down to the fans. Couple this with the fact that all but one of the expansion candidates are academic/research powerhouses and I see little room for disagreement.
        FSU’s lack of AAU status could potentially be a point of contention, but unlike many, I think the Presidents are pragmatic and far-sighted enough to see the enormous benefits of having Florida in the footprint.

        • zeek says:

          I’m not saying they’re adversaries.

          I think Delany and the presidents have all been on board in both directions; I’m just saying that I think Delany was more of a driving force with Nebraska whereas the presidents are more of a driving force with Maryland/Rutgers and expansion into the Southeast.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          This notion, perpetuated by a few on here, that the Presidents and Delany are natural adversaries in this process is not born out by the comments of Gee, Brandon and other B1G figures. In fact, they all seem to be on the same page.

          Delany is the presidents’ employee. He serves at their pleasure. Naturally, they are all on the same page.

          I think some of us believe that if Delany had unconstrained freedom to act, he would have no hesitation to add FSU, but the presidents may need some convincing. This does not mean they are adversaries, only that they come to this with slightly different perspectives.

  26. loki_the_bubba says:

    SIAP

    An attempt at quantifying CIC expansion.

    http://mgoblog.com/diaries/b1g-expansion-dollars-research-edition

    • zeek says:

      The most interesting part of this story is the part that the AAU plays in it since we don’t really know how definite a factor that is.

      But it’d be interesting to see a Big Ten with 18 or 19 AAU members (minus Nebraska plus UChicago and JHU as CIC members).

      That’d give the Big Ten schools almost an entire third of the organization’s membership.

      • zeek says:

        Also, based on the numbers we’ve seen, there’s a reasonable possibility that Indiana is one of the bottom 4 schools in the AAU by AAU metrics (one of those 4 in the 80s or 90s) along with possibly Kansas, Iowa State, Missouri, and Oregon.

        That’d be an interesting debate the next time they try to shrink the membership.

  27. Poor Steven Bench. Thrown into the “wolves” of Virginia as a freshman. I thought it was an Illinois picture at first….

  28. Brian says:

    Frank,

    This is probably a decent time to revisit the VT versus FSU discussion.

    Academics
    http://mup.asu.edu/research2011.pdf
    2009 Federal Expenditures
    VT – #58, $148.4M
    FSU – #71, $117.3M

    2009 Total Research
    VT – #41, $396.7M
    FSU – #93, $195.2M

    VT – #32 Public research school according to CMUP
    FSU – #44

    NE’s AAU report:
    VT – #91
    FSU #94

    The net result is that VT is a better school from the B10′s POV, but still non-AAU so a reach.

    Athletics
    Football:
    FSU is a new king, VT is a prince

    Stadiums:
    VT – 65,632
    FSU – 82,300

    Hoops:
    Nothing special from either

    Director’s Cup (2012, 2011, 2010):
    FSU – #5, 9, 5
    VT – #35, 45, 38

    Niche sports of interest:
    VT – wrestling, W lacrosse, M hockey (club)
    FSU – sand volleyball

    FSU is better here, especially for FB but overall as well. VT fits better in terms of their sports, though.

    Other
    Population:
    FL – 19.3M (6.4M per AQ school)
    VA – 8.2M (4.1M)
    VA + DC – 8.8M (4.4M)

    Geography:
    VT
    1. Would lock up DC
    2. Splits the state with UVA
    3. Contiguous
    4. Kind of out of the way to get to

    FSU
    1. Only contiguous if VT/UVA, UNC and GT get added, too
    2. Splits the state with SEC and ACC potentially
    3. Would help solidify GA if GT was in (south GA is big on FSU)
    4. Kind of out of the way to get to

    Culture:
    VT – southern/military/Appalachian
    FSU – southern

    Summary
    It depends how you weight the various factors. FSU brings more athletically (FB king, recruiting, etc) but VT is better academically. VT is closer to the current footprint and more culturally similar to the rest of the B10 than FSU. FSU would be isolated unless GT also joins. VT would double up in VA for the B10 presumably, but that may be necessary for BTN purposes. Adding VT assures the B10 of the SEC not getting into VA.

    FSU is the more lucrative choice for the B10, but VT is better for the CIC. I don’t know if either will get serious consideration, but I think both should.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      FSU is the more lucrative choice for the B10, but VT is better for the CIC. I don’t know if either will get serious consideration, but I think both should.

      The difference is, that if you’ve got UVA, the marginal value of VT isn’t great. FSU adds a whole state that they won’t otherwise have.

      VT is better academically, but still not a school that the CIC would lust to have, by any means. If you’re going to add a school for non-academic reasons, you might as well add the best one athletically.

      (There is probably a better measure of fan support than state population divided by the number of AQ schools in the state, but I don’t know what it is offhand.)

      • Brian says:

        Marc Shepherd,

        “The difference is, that if you’ve got UVA, the marginal value of VT isn’t great.”

        That’s if you have UVA, and I did note that. We actually don’t know their marginal value, though. Where will UVA get the BTN on at full price versus where would UVA and VT get it on at full price? How much does their research add to the CIC? How much does their FB prowess add to the value of TV deals over not having them? All of that is up in the air.

        “FSU adds a whole state that they won’t otherwise have.”

        Does it? Or does it only get on in parts of the state? Or is it everywhere but not at full price?

        “VT is better academically, but still not a school that the CIC would lust to have, by any means.”

        Also a point I noted.

        “If you’re going to add a school for non-academic reasons, you might as well add the best one athletically.”

        You also skipped the cultural and geographic issues. Those have to be a factor. Another possible factor would be keeping the SEC out of VA. All of that has to be taken into account.

        “(There is probably a better measure of fan support than state population divided by the number of AQ schools in the state, but I don’t know what it is offhand.)”

        It would probably involve ratings, but those are hard to find. I presented both ways to view it (whole state or partial state) because I know some people prefer each approach.

  29. [...] The facts, though, are that this process may be simmering for a while. Maryland’s attempt to get out of the ACC buyout hit a legal snag this week, and it’s easy to imagine that the other schools involved in this possibility will want to see what will happen in court before pr…. [...]

  30. OrderRestored83 says:

    add

  31. Psuhockey says:

    What’s everybody’s opinion on the final number: 16, 18, or 20. 16 works for four 4 team groups rotated into 2 divisions or 2 divisions outright in a 9 game schedule. Everybody would play each other at least once in a four year period. 20 works into four 5 team groups as well with everyone playing each other once in a 3 year period. Not sure how 18 works with a 9 game schedule. I guess you could do three 6 team groups but then you would need a conference semifinal. 2 conferences of 9 teams at 9 games doesnt work as you wouldn’t play everybody in the other conference at least once in a 4 yr period. It almost has to be 16 or 20 for scheduling purposes, but I doubt they would add that many teams so quick, but I can’t see them just adding ony 2 ACC teams and leaving valuable properties for other conferences to grab.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      I think that, to them, scheduling is a second-order problem. It won’t be determinative of whether they add zero, two, four, or six more schools. I think they are agreed in principle to add up to six more, provided they are the right six (as they define them). I also think they are prepared to wait at 14, 16, or 18 for a considerable period of time, if the schools they want aren’t available.

      I am inclined to disagree that 20 is easier to schedule than 18. The more you add, the harder it gets. On the one hand, if you’re the Big Ten, you want “everyone to play everyone” reasonably often. You don’t want schools on islands that aren’t integrated with the rest of the conference. But the more schools you have, the harder it is achieve that while also preserving annual (or nearly annual) games that fans want.

      Bear in mind, basketball scheduling is a big deal too. Just like football, it gets harder the more teams you add.

      • vp19 says:

        Bear in mind, basketball scheduling is a big deal too. Just like football, it gets harder the more teams you add.

        And once you get beyond 18 members (technically 19, but no one will stop at that number), you can’t play an 18-game conference schedule without not playing somebody. And I doubt the Big Ten, or any major conference, really wants to play a 20-game basketball schedule.

        • Psuhockey says:

          I think four 5 team divisions are easy to schedule for both football and basketball. Rotating division so you play the 4 teams in your division plus the 5 from another for a total of 9 games in football. Everybody will play each other once every 3 years. In basketball, play your division mates twice for 8 games, and two other divisions for 10 games for a total of 18. Everybody would play each other every other year at least. Yes you would play everybody every year but every other year isn’t terrible.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            …four 5 team divisions are easy to schedule…

            Depends on your definition of “easy”. For instance, it’s pretty obvious that Nebraska, Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Iowa would be together. But whomever you choose for the fifth in their group would be separated from a partner it normally plays annually, and in your system would see its mate only one year in three.

          • Psuhockey says:

            It all depends on who is added, but your right that rivalries could be ruin. If Kansas is in the final six, you could go:

            Kansas, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Nebraska, Iowa
            OSU, Michigan, Msu, Northwestern, Illinois
            PSU, Indiana, Purdue, Rutgers, Maryland
            UVA,UNC, Gt, Duke, FSU.

            PSU/OSU is the only rivalry broken up. If ND joins instead of Duke, you could drop UMD with the other ACC schools and put the Irish with PSU to make up for the lost rivalry. Until we know who the teams are, it’s hard to say how many rivalries are lost and whether it really matters.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            @Psuhockey: I agree that you can put together a tolerable pod rotation if Kansas is one of the teams. I don’t think it’s the best system, but it doesn’t have a fatal flaw that immediately disqualifies it. The trouble is, there aren’t any good Kansas rumors right now. If Delany is talking to them, it’s the world’s best-kept secret.

          • BruceMcF says:

            @ Marc Shephard ~ Given the logistics of cross-over games between 5 team groups, in a 10 game conference schedule, OSU could have PSU as one of the two cross division games played two years on and two years off.

            Individual rotations should be with three schools to have every school played over a three years period ~ three schools CAN be played with an individual rotation because of the way that Home and Away slots in for a 3-school cycle~ call them 2.1, 2.2, 3.1, 3.2, 3.3:
            2.1H, 3.1A
            2.1A, 3.2H
            2.2H, 3.3A
            2.2A, 3.1H
            2.1H, 3.2A
            2.2A, 3.3H

            … so rotations of two or four schools should be full two year Home and Away series, but rotations of three schools may be individual Home or Away once through then the reverse the next three years.

            If Illinois plays Indiana and Purdue 2on/2off, OSU plays Penn State and Purdue 2on/2off, the 2on/2off ring might be:
            IL – IN / Purdue
            OSU – Purdue / PSU
            TSUN – PSU / MD
            NW – MD / Rutgers
            MSU – Rutgers / IN

          • BruceMcF says:

            @Psuhockey ~ now cut off Kansas, which is not happening in this decade, and cut the next ACC raid(s) to either 4 or 2&2, and you have the 4/5/5/4 alignment.

    • cutter says:

      I agree with Marc that the scheduling issue is not a major priority for conference expansion.

      The primary issue for the conference is expansion of the CIC research consortium. In terms of revenue to the universities, this far outstrips the amount of money surrounding what the athletic departments generate and spend.

      The secondary issue is making the athletic departments as financially self-sufficient as possible. In that regard, the main driver will be what optimizes the upcoming television contract negotiations that are due to take place in three years’ time.

      I suspect the conference is also concerned with how the perceive the future for college athletics is going to shake out. If the B1G leadership is convinced there will be some sort of contraction within the ranks of Division 1-A in concert with a change in the relationship between the larger conferences and the NCAA, then they could be positioning themselves for that as well.

      As far as scheduling is concerned, the B1G could go to two fixed 8-team divisions and have each team play the other at least once in a four year period if they opt not to have home-and-home games for cross-divisional play. This assumes a nine game conference schedule.

      If a pod system is utilized for a 16-team conference, then four 4-team pods would allow the teams in the B1G to play one another at least twice in a four-year period with a nine game conference schedule and with home-and-home series.

      If a pod system is utilized for a 20-team conference, the four 5-team pods would allow the teams in the B1G to play one another at least twice in a six-year period with a nine game conference schedule and with home-and-home series. Without the home and home series setup, this could be done in three years. That would mean changing the divisional line up annually rather than bi-annually, and that may be a pretty confusing approach for the fans and media.

      Frank’s post illustrates some of the thinking here, i.e., that the conference still intends to expand and that the ACC is the conference where the invitees are likely to come given the demographics, the nature of the institutions in terms of academics/research and because the B1G is in a position to give them a markedly better deal from the position of money and through the CIC. Virginia, North Carolina, Duke and Georgia Tech all seem to form a subset within the ACC culturally and they are the four schools that are identified as likely candidates. Florida State is non-AAU, but it does help to a large degree on the athletic/Big Ten Network/television negotiation side of the ledger. That brings the B1G to 19 members.

      Which program is #20? Notre Dame would probably be the best choice if they were willing to join. From a research/AAU standpoint, Pittsburgh would also be a good choice, but perhaps less so in terms of what they would bring to the athletic department finances part of the equation.

      We’ll see what happens. The timetable for all this happening is driven in part by when the television negotiations are due to take place. The question here is this–does the B1G need to have the expanded conference “in place” before, in or shortly after 2016? It may also be driven by what other conferences do, particularly since the SEC is planning on launching its network early in 2014.

    • BruceMcF says:

      With 18 its 4/5/5/4 or 5/4/4/5, with the middle two swapping between the outside two every second year.

      West: WI, MN, IA, UNL
      North: NW, IL, MSU, TSUN, OSU
      East: PSU, IN, PU, MD, Rutgers
      South: UVA, UNC, GTech, FSU

      With 10 conference games, the groups of 4 play their cross-division games against each other, either with one locked cross-group rival and the other three in an individual rotation over three years, or in two pairs of home and away series.

      The groups of 5 play two teams cross group in home and away series and three teams in a single game rotation across three years, which completes a home and away series across six years.

    • gregenstein says:

      I really can’t see them going past 18, for many of the reasons some others have posted. They claim scheduling is secondary, and maybe it is, but at some point you aren’t really a conference, you are your own league. In football, I can’t see them playing more than 9 conference games in the regular season, and even getting there will be a fight. So, if they’re going to insist on some form of protected, crossover games, then you can have no more than 8 teams in your division (as you have to play a divisional round robin to stage a CCG, though you could change the divisions annually like a pod system suggests).

      They’d have to go to 10 conference games annually to go beyond 18 teams. Given that the schools just nixed a 9 game conference schedule at some point in the past year, I really doubt they’d go past 18 teams unless they really, really want are available. Those would be UNC, Notre Dame, Georgia Tech, Florida State, and Virginia. Some other combination that included Duke, Virginia Tech, or Clemson I think would be considered if it forced one or more of the above to jump ship.

      If they do go with some form of Pod based system, can we all agree that geographically based names are the best? Your divisions every year would be something like NorthSouth, NorthWest, SouthEast, etc. After 2 years of the current format, I still don’t know without using Google which division each school is in.

      • bullet says:

        On top of that, you pretty much preclude the possibility of further expansion. Do you take Duke, Georgia Tech, FSU and Miami and skip on the possbility of ever getting Notre Dame?

        • greg says:

          ND ain’t ever coming, and the B1G would be better off by moving on.

        • BruceMcF says:

          Do you take Duke, Georgia Tech, FSU and Miami and foreclose the possibility of every getting Notre Dame? If you want those four, then sure. The questions there are whether you DO want those four, and whether you’ve shaken up the ACC enough to pry UVA and UNC loose, only to pry them loose for another conference. Duke, Georgia Tech and Miami would all stand behind UVA and UNC in desirability as adds to the Big Ten.

          • bullet says:

            I was assuming UVA and UNC were 15 and 16.

          • BruceMcF says:

            If you were able to get UVA and UNC at 15 and 16, then it would be a question of whether FSU could pass muster. FSU plus a pair that would have more appealing academics ~ Duke or GTech ~ would be expected to be a payout-increasing expansion. I have a hard time seeing the Big Ten invite Miami, and GTech+Duke seems like a payout-diluting add.

            If UVA+UNC were AVAILABLE as a pair, I’d be awful tempted to not pick the fight over FSU, take the home run and call it a game.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            I agree that the numbers probably don’t work for Duke/GT. Beyond that, I don’t think Duke would be a first mover. It would move either with, or after, UNC. Whatever may be the probability of UNC moving, Duke (on its own) has to be less.

            If UVA+UNC were AVAILABLE as a pair, I’d be awful tempted to not pick the fight over FSU, take the home run and call it a game.

            We don’t know how close (or far away) FSU is. If there’s majority support, but lacking one or two votes, would I continue to push? Yes, I think so. From a competitiveness standpoint, if you accept the premise of expansion, then I think you want another king, and FSU is the only one on the board.

      • BruceMcF says:

        From recent discussion, getting to nine seems to be much closer to a done deal than a tough fight, and that is driven by the expansion to 14.

      • Brian says:

        gregenstein,

        “In football, I can’t see them playing more than 9 conference games in the regular season, and even getting there will be a fight.”

        Um, they’ve agreed to at least 9 already and seriously considered 10. That’s with only 14 teams.

        “Given that the schools just nixed a 9 game conference schedule at some point in the past year,”

        More recently they apparently agreed to 9+ starting in 2016 just like before.

        “If they do go with some form of Pod based system, can we all agree that geographically based names are the best?”

        No. They must choose 4 elitist buzzwords that all start with the same letter and gives no clues as to which school is where.

        • jj says:

          I got it:

          Power
          Passion
          Pride
          Pseudo-Intellectuals

          • ccrider55 says:

            Marc:

            Agree on the need for 12th game, but that was an all D1 season length rule change. It had nothing (necessarily) to do with deciding conference championships.

            Disagree on B12 CCG “problems”. The rule functioned perfectly. 1: It is the conference that determines how to tiebreak for division championships. 2: The possibility exists for the top 6 teams to be in the same division in any year. It is the conference that create divisions that makes that this more or less likely, and it isn’t the NCAA’s responsibility to alter rules to compensate when things don’t go as hoped.

        • gregenstein says:

          Elitist buzzwords it is!! jj’s suggestion is as good as any.

          I missed the news about 9 conference games becoming more likely, so that changes the discussion a bit. To me, though, they’d still have to go to 10 games to have than 18 teams just because of the protected-crossover games. If they ever get to the point where that is eliminated, then I think 20 is possible.

          • Brian says:

            gregenstein,

            “Elitist buzzwords it is!! jj’s suggestion is as good as any.”

            I’m leaning towards using Latin words.

            “I missed the news about 9 conference games becoming more likely, so that changes the discussion a bit.”

            Fair enough. Nobody catches all the news.

            “To me, though, they’d still have to go to 10 games to have than 18 teams just because of the protected-crossover games.”

            Since they considered 10 this time, I think they will make that jump if they go beyond 16. Even at 16 they might do it. As for protected games, we don’t know what they have in mind. At minimum, they’ll protect the one major rivalry they split (MI/MSU or IN/PU). They may also lock 1 game for everyone else, but I don’t think they will. Locking MD and RU with someone isn’t right. Everyone in the west should get equal east coast access in my opinion. Also, at 16 or beyond the split may allow for no locked rivals being needed.

            If they insist on locked games, I’d go:

            NE/PSU
            WI/MD
            IA/PU
            MN/IN
            NW/RU
            IL/OSU
            MSU/MI

            or

            NE/PSU
            WI/MSU
            IA/MD
            MN/MI
            NW/RU
            IL/OSU
            PU/IN

            9 games, 14 teams:
            1 locked = 6 in division x 100% + 1 locked x 100% + 6 rotating x 33%
            0 locked = 6 in division x 100% + 7 rotating x 43%

            The difference is roughly 1 game per decade against each of those 6 rotating teams (going from 4.3 to 3.3) in exchange for 6 more games against that locked team.

            “If they ever get to the point where that is eliminated, then I think 20 is possible.”

            9 games, 16 teams:
            1 locked = 7 in division x 100% + 1 locked x 100% + 7 rotating x 14%
            0 locked = 7 in division x 100% + 8 rotating x 25%

            10 games, 16 teams:
            1 locked = 7 in division x 100% + 1 locked x 100% + 7 rotating x 29%
            0 locked = 7 in division x 100% + 8 rotating x 38%

            9 games, 18 teams:
            1 locked = 8 in division x 100% + 1 locked x 100% + 8 rotating x 0%
            0 locked = 8 in division x 100% + 9 rotating x 11%

            10 games, 18 teams:
            1 locked = 8 in division x 100% + 1 locked x 100% + 8 rotating x 13%
            0 locked = 8 in division x 100% + 9 rotating x 22%

            You really need pods or no divisions for 16+.

          • gregenstein says:

            Earth, Wind, Fire, and Water!

            Just let me state that I’m not in favor of conference that big. While 16 seems roughly managable, you are basically at what I would consider the point of diminishing returns. Not in the fiscal sense, as I’m sure there’s facts somewhere to prove certain schools added past 16 still make money. Just that it wouldn’t feel like a conference. Even at 14 and 16 it’s starting to feel like a conglomorate.

            I really don’t want to see locked games anymore though, and I like the idea of pods as it gives the schedule more variety. 16 teams, 10 conference games, 4 pods, and 1 “locked” crossover I think is where this is headed in the relatively near future. Whether that causes mass ACC chaos is unknown, but I don’t think there will be further expansion without Virginia.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            I like the idea of pods as it gives the schedule more variety. 16 teams, 10 conference games, 4 pods, and 1 “locked” crossover I think is where this is headed in the relatively near future.

            Once you’ve made the baby step from static divisions to static pods, the next step is to have nothing static at all, aside from those rivalries that are deemed mandatory to protect every year. Every pod arrangement I’ve seen protects more than is really needed, because in most of the believable expansion scenarios, the league doesn’t really align itself in neat four-team groupings that preserve historical or geographic affinities. In most of the proposed alignments, at least one team is thrown in with three others with whom it shares no affinity, because the math requires equal-size pods.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Logic says if you can decide first and second in a non fixed format then you can decide first and the competitive reason/justification, the necessity of an extra (13th) game is gone.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            @ccrider55: Logic says if you can decide first and second in a non fixed format then you can decide first and the competitive reason/justification, the necessity of an extra (13th) game is gone.

            I totally agree with you, but there was no competitive necessity for the 12th regular-season game either (nor for the 11th, nor for the 10th); yet, they approved it. Nor does the 13th game, in the manner now operated, always produce the most satisfactory competitive result, e.g., the Big XII in 1999 and 2008.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            @ccrider55: [I think you inadvertently replied in the wrong place, but I'm putting my comments here to keep the discussion together.]

            I mentioned the 12th regular season game, merely to point out that not every rules change needs to be driven by a competitive necessity. Neither of us is a party to the rulemaking process, but I don’t think every proposal is greeted with: “Sorry, unless you can prove you really need that, we aren’t giving it to you.” We are in a deregulatory climate right now, and many schools are openly and publicly challenging the NCAA’s value.

            The limit on the number of games is meant to ensure a proper balance between athletics and academics. The fact is, every FBS conference with at least 12 teams is playing a CCG. Altering the rule (to eliminate the requirement of divisions) would have no bearing on the number of games played. It would simply give conferences the discretion to decide for themselves which two teams are eligible, any way they choose. Whether it would produce better, worse, or just the same results, ought to be left up to those who would be most affected by the decision, i.e., the leagues.

            Obviously, there still need to be rules, but for the life of me I cannot imagine how any university president could think their school or their student-athletes would be harmed by this. Either s/he comes from a league that wants to use the more liberalized rule. Or s/he comes from a league that does not, in which case it simply doesn’t affect them at all, as the decision lies wholly within a league and affects no one outside of it.

            The only conceivable reason I can think of for maintaing the rule as written, is the paternalistic view that a bunch of centrally-managed bureaucrats is better able than the conferences themselves, to decide or constrain the qualifications for playing a game that is already going to be played anyway.

          • Brian says:

            Marc Shepherd,

            “Obviously, there still need to be rules, but for the life of me I cannot imagine how any university president could think their school or their student-athletes would be harmed by this.”

            Then you have a very bad imagination.

            “Or s/he comes from a league that does not, in which case it simply doesn’t affect them at all, as the decision lies wholly within a league and affects no one outside of it.”

            Completely not true. What happens in one I-A conference impacts all the other I-A teams in some way.

            “The only conceivable reason I can think of for maintaing the rule as written, is the paternalistic view that a bunch of centrally-managed bureaucrats is better able than the conferences themselves, to decide or constrain the qualifications for playing a game that is already going to be played anyway.”

            Yeah, CFB would be much better off if every conference can make up their own rules. The SEC can expand to 85 person classes and 250 player teams. The B10 can outlaw the forward pass. The B12 can switch to playing 7 on 7. That would be great.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Oops, old eyes and a small cell phone screen. :(

            Again, I guess we disagree in principle. To me the only justifiable reason to hold a CCG as an extra game is because the size of a conference precludes enough games to get a reasonable result. Perscribing a method that insures games are NOT a random mix and that the winner of each half doesn’t risk being excluded from a popularity contest, or tragically uneven scheduling, seems perfectly reasonable. This is not the case: “…a game that is already going to be played anyway”. Perhaps someday the rule changes. Until then, it’s create a CCG within the current regular season, get to twelve teams, or get an extra week of Bowl preparation :) .

    • Brian says:

      Psuhockey,

      “What’s everybody’s opinion on the final number: 16, 18, or 20.”

      It should be 10, I’d settle for 11, I can deal with 12, 14 stinks, 16 is bad, 18 is terrible, 20 is an abomination, 22 is pointless but doable and 24 might work best given 14 to start. All that said, what do you mean final? I’d expect something like this based on announcements:

      14, 16, 18, pause, 20-22, 12

      At some point I think the B10 may grow so big that it splits like the WAC did.

      Works OK with 9 games and no divisions – 14, 16, 18
      Works OK with 9 games and divisions (no locked games) – 14, 16, 20, 22, 24
      Works OK with 9 games and pods – 14, 16
      Works OK with 9 games and divisions (1 locked game) – 14

      Works OK with 10 games and no divisions – 14, 16, 18, 20
      Works OK with 10 games and divisions (no locked games) – 14, 16, 18, 22, 24
      Works OK with 10 games and pods – 14, 16, 18
      Works OK with 10 games and divisions (1 locked game) – 14, 16

      “Not sure how 18 works with a 9 game schedule. I guess you could do three 6 team groups but then you would need a conference semifinal.”

      You split the middle group of 6 into two pods of 3. Between swapping pods between divisions and changing the makeup of the pods of 3, it works out.

      In order of locked rival when in groups of 3
      W1 – NE, NW, IL
      W2 – IA, WI, MN
      C1 – MI, MSU, PU
      C2 – OSU, GT, IN
      E1 – PSU, RU, MD
      E2 – UNC, Duke, UVA

      Year 1 – W+C1 vs E+C2
      Year 2 – W+C2 vs E+C1
      Year 3 – C+W1 vs E+W2
      Year 4 – C+W2 vs E+W1
      Year 5 – C+E1 vs W+E2
      Year 6 – C+E2 vs W+E1

      If you don’t like that, leave C as the group always split up and shift the membership of the pods of 3 every 2 years.

      “2 conferences of 9 teams at 9 games doesnt work as you wouldn’t play everybody in the other conference at least once in a 4 yr period.”

      Unless that’s what you want. But the B10 already discussed 10 games for 14 teams. With a new TV deal and some financial changes they would likely go to 10 games by the time they hit 18 teams. 2 divisions of 9 with 10 games is OK.

      “It almost has to be 16 or 20 for scheduling purposes,”

      No it doesn’t.

  32. [...] Even Frank the Tank is beginning to wonder about fire behind the rumored smoke.  http://frankthetank.wordpress.com/2013/02/19/b1g-dirty-south-expansion/     Do not complain if something goes down and you did not share your voice before it happened.  [...]

  33. Wainscott says:

    Why is it a foregone conclusion that the B1G would go past 16? Seriously, speculation is fun and all, but why has it considered a fait accompli that the B1G would go past 16?

    If it stops at 16, with UVa and UNC, you also get pretty easy divisions:

    East: PSU, UNC, UVa, Rutgers, UMD, OSU, UM, IU
    West: MSU, PU, NU, Neb., Iowa, UW, Minn., ILL.

    Reasonably geographical divisions. A good amount of rivalries preserved. Indiana and UM prefer being in the east because of alumni presence in the northeast (especially NYC). MSU is happy because it gets its regular Chicago exposure (massive MSU alumni presence in Chi). Wisconsin gets Iowa and Neb every year. PSU gets several nearby rivals.

    Moreover, a 9 game schedule would allow for 7 division games, 1 cross-division protected rival (critical in some cases to preserve some key rivalries, such as MSU-UM, IU-PU, PSU-Neb.) and 1 rotating rival. A 10 game schedule would allow 2 rotating rivals.

    Beyond 16, then I direct you all to Mr. SEC’s dead-on history lesson about the long-term stability of large conferences. In the modern age, with media rights driving the train, 16 is a good balance between additional revenues and maintaining historical bonds critical to the survival of college athletics. Beyond 16, the historical bonds will inevitably fray (unless, of course, the NCAA allows for a 13th regular season game).

    Also, don’t forget Gordon Gee’s statements that some schools in the midwest were also potential targets, too (here’s looking at you, Kansas). I would take Kansas over Duke or GT any day, based on third-tier rights, a reputable research university, dominant basketball, presence in good markets (Kansas City, along with other midwestern and southwestern cities), built in rivals, and the ability to balance east-west divisions.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      Why is it a foregone conclusion that the B1G would go past 16?

      I don’t know about “foregone conclusion,” but a number of Big Ten ADs, presidents, etc., have mentioned numbers like 18 and 20. The fact that we discuss those numbers does not mean we prefer it, or consider it inevitable.

    • zeek says:

      Mainly because of comments such as those of Georgia Tech’s leadership that they’d like to be with UNC/UVa/Duke as an essential grouping as well as the fact that the Big Ten seems to first be targeting UVa and Georgia Tech.

      I don’t see the Big Ten’s leadership saying “no” to Ga Tech and Duke.

      • Wainscott says:

        Duke and Ga. Tech are very attractive, and if 18 was the target, both would be locks (absent, of course, ND seeking admission to the B1G, which we should acknowledge even if the odds are slim/none). And I am sure Ga. Tech would want to be with Duke, UVa, and UNC–just as I am sure that Wake Forest wants to be with them too. And there is no way Wake is getting an invite to any other conference.

        Plus, Duke and UNC are, to a very real sense, redundant. The only real benefit to both, as you correctly noted, is their annual basketball game. But that is hardly a reason to take a team. UNC delivers NC as well–and likely better than–Duke. Duke has a marginal presence in other cities, an.

        Also, the less said about Duke football, the better (except for this hilarious article: http://blogs.newsobserver.com/accnow/losing-helps-duke-win-football-lawsuit)

        Furthermore, based on Delany’s ties to UNC, I wouldn’t be surprised if he was/is using Ga. Tech in order to entice UNC.

        • @Winscott – I agree that Duke and UNC are largely redundant in TV market terms (although their basketball program could help BTN carriage in NYC/NJ). However, it’s more than possible that the Big Ten simply doesn’t have the option to take UNC alone from the state of North Carolina. The ultimate choice might be whether it’s worth it to take Duke in order to also get UNC or not having any chance of getting UNC at all. It’s akin to how Larry Scott had to offer an entire wing of 6 schools in order to get Texas to come to the table. Now, it helps that Duke isn’t a Texas Tech or Oklahoma State-type institution – the Big Ten obviously would love Duke’s academics and they are at least a legit blue blood in the revenue sport of basketball. So, if UNC says that Duke needs to come with them in order to take a Big Ten invite, then I don’t think Jim Delany would even blink twice. It would be a done deal. Now, the scenario that would be problematic for the Big Ten isn’t UNC protecting Duke, but rather UNC needing to protect NC State. That’s something much harder for the Big Ten presidents to swallow.

          • Wainscott says:

            @Frank- I completely agree. I am assuming that UNC is not tethered/handcuffed to Duke. If it is, then absolutely, both should be accepted without any real thought and deliberation.

            I also agree that a UNC-NCState handcuff would be very hard for B1G presidents to accept, and would likely mean neither joins the B1G.

            My only point is if there is no tether/handcuff, then UNC and Duke would be redundant, with Duke’s potential benefit in NYC/NJ very limited due to the presence of UM, PSU, Rutgers, NU, Indiana, and Wisconsin alumni in NYC/NJ.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            @Wainscott: I do think that you are vastly — I do mean, vastly — underestimating the national brand power of Duke basketball. They are one of the rare teams in any sport that attracts a broad national audience, no matter whom they are playing. When you add the research synergies and academic strength, I think the Big Ten presidents would consider Duke an obvious add, whether UNC demanded it or not.

          • Wainscott says:

            @Marc Shepherd- No doubt that Duke is a premier, top 3-5 national brand in Basketball (along with Kentucky, Kansas, and UNC) and on that point, there is nothing to add.

            However, from the BTN perspective, assuming UNC joins the B1G, I don’t see what cities/regions Duke brings to the table. Nebraska brought its state, but also rabid alumni in California, Arizona, Texas, and elsewhere who would suscribe to the BTN. Duke is iffier as a driver of BTN subscriptions and/or a bludgeon for the BTN to use to force its way onto the Basic Tier. UNC alone does that within the state. Does Duke do that in Atlanta? DC is covered, so is NYC, Phila, Chicago, other midwestern cities. . Maybe it leads some alumni around the country to subscribe to the Sports Tier on their cable system, but I don’t see Duke’s use to the BTN if UNC is on board.

            Now, Duke without UNC can deliver much of what UNC can. All I am saying is that you don’t need both, and the economics tilt toward UNC.

          • greg says:

            Duke would help in carriage negotiations and advertising sales. And they’re a research powerhouse. B1G would love to have them.

          • Biological Imperiative says:

            As I see it the UNC Board of Govenors act as the congress for the entire UNC\NC state system. I can’t see them cutting off thier left hand (NC State) just so thier right hand can get a bigger athletic diamond ring or CiC discount card. They would end up being the deciding factor about UNC. Granted what the hell do I know abut it.

          • skeptic says:

            Frank,

            UNC can’t cover an extra share even if it came by itself.

            you bring Duke with it, making 2 new shares when the state can’t even cover 1, and you only increase the loss to the legacy schools.

            and TWC and Cablevision aren’t putting BTN on basic, at “in footprint” basic rates, in NYC. (and YES won’t change that).

          • frug says:

            @skeptic

            UNC could easily cover their own share. North Carolina is the 10th largest state in the country (and will pass Michigan very soon) and UNC can get the BTN in the whole state.

            As for the national contracts? They would be an average draw by Big Ten standards in football and the biggest draw in BB.

          • Ted says:

            Wainscott,

            As Marc Shepard pointed out, I think you’re still undervaluing Duke. More to your point of what areas will Duke help with that UNC doesnt? It has a huge presence in the NYC/NJ area – to the point where they can be discussed in the same breath as Michigan/OSU football and Rutgers, in general, when talking about the critical mass of BTN programming necessary to warrant BTN on basic carriage.

            That’s an area I see that Duke adds where UNC doesn’t quite as much. Additionally, if adding Duke, along with UNC, could help take basic rates in the NC, DC, and NYC/NJ markets from (just tossing a number out) something like $.85 to $.90 per household, that’s just gravy on top of adding the state of North Carolina with UNC and Duke.

    • cutter says:

      It’s not a foregone conclusion that the B1G would go beyond 16 schools, but it is a plausible scenario consistent with the conference’s stated goals and the collective assessment on this board (not to mention some of the comments made by conference athletic directors).

      If you feel that the primary goal of the conference is to expand the CIC research consortium, then a combination of Virginia and North Carolina would certainly do it. By extension, Duke and Georgia would also be primary candidates for exactly the same reason.

      If you feel that another goal in concert with improving the conference’s academic profile is financial self-sufficiency for the B1G athletic departments through increased television revenue (thru the BTN and via the new television contracts being negotiated in a few years), then a program like Florida State is also a considered possibility. At that point, we’re at a potential 19 schools instead of just 16.

      One of the reasons why Kansas isn’t seen as a likely candidate is the belief that Kansas State would have to be included as part of any deal. Another one is demographics–the population in the state simply isn’t growing as large as those in the southeast portion of the country.

      The reason why pods are discussed at all is because there is a historical precedent (16-team Western Athletic Conference) and because the system would allow teams play one another within the conference more than a fixed division alignment would. The B1G has consistently said that it wants to play the teams in the conference more rather than less (thus the discussion about nine or ten conference games in the future) and pods is the best way to achieve that goal in a conference with 16 or more members.

      As far as historic bonds are concerned, I think the horse is already out the barn and munching in the tall grass when it concerns college athletics. Conferences have formed, grown, expired, reformed, expanded and contracted throughout the history of university sports. While some rivalries have managed to survive all that, others have gone away and some of those have been replaced by new rivalries. And through all of that, college sports (particularly football and men’s basketball) have consistently grown and become some of the most popular spectator events in the country.

      We’ll see what happens in due course. One expectation is that once the Maryland/ACC lawsuit is settled, there could be further movement. OTOH, circumstances may provide a catalyst such that invitations are given out and accepted prior to that taking place.

      • Wainscott says:

        @Cutter- Good points. However, the WAC’s experience with pods was, to borrow from Hobbes, “nasty, brutish, and short.” The WAC split up after 4-5 years of life with four 4-team pods. I doubt administrators and presidents–most of whom where around during the WAC’s experiment–would want to go down that path. As for the historic bonds, the B1G still has them, what with all the rivalry trophies and hatred borne out of proximity. The horse might be out of the barn to a small degree, but those bonds are still strong in many parts of the B1G and are easily preserved.

        I agree that western division schools playing Michigan once every 7 years would be patently unacceptable to those schools, and a solution might be a 10-game schedule with 2 rotating rivals, in addition to a locked rival. But 10 games presents its own host of issues (7 home games, marquee non-conference games, ets.)

        • Psuhockey says:

          I don’t think you can compare the BIG with the WAC. That’s like comparing the NFL to the XFL.

          • Wainscott says:

            Certainly, a direct B1G-WAC comparison would be comical for the reason you stated. Indeed, comparing the B1G and the present-day WAC is more akin to the NFL and afl2.

            But all I am saying is that less than 20 years ago, another collegiate athletic conferences tried the pod system, and it failed spectacularly, and that experience (one which Delany and others are doubtless aware of) should give them great pause before proceeding down that path.

          • m (Ag) says:

            Why does everyone keep making this mistake? Every month someone on this blog says the WAC failed because of pods. The expansion failed because of money.

            The 16-school WAC failed because they added a bunch of schools in ‘markets’ (like Rice & SMU) without checking to see if these schools had any following in those markets. Unsurprisingly, the ratings didn’t impress television executives, and the new 16 team conference wasn’t going to make much more money than the original 8 teams all by themselves.

            When the original schools figured they could raise their payout by separating themselves again, they did so.

            The pods (quadrants) is something journalists bring up, because they’re lousy at following money (they were even worse in the early 90s). The success of the expansion was always going to hinge on the money.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          @Wainscott: I’m sure the Big Ten ADs would study the WAC experience closely for lessons. There was so much wrong with tha WAC that it’s far from clear that the pod scheduling system was really the fatal flaw. I am a pod skeptic, but I prefer something more dynamic, not less.

        • ccrider55 says:

          “I doubt administrators and presidents–most of whom where around during the WAC’s experiment–would want to go down that path.”

          But they prefer to follow the example of the SWC, BE, WAC 2.1, near collapse of B12, current ACC situation, all the other conference reorganizations, assimilations, failures?
          I think there is little, if anything, about the WAC experiment that will inform the B1G decision makers.

    • Brian says:

      Wainscott,

      “Why is it a foregone conclusion that the B1G would go past 16?”

      It isn’t. But the number 20 has been uttered by some of TPTB, and thus people speculate.

      “If it stops at 16, with UVa and UNC, you also get pretty easy divisions:

      East: PSU, UNC, UVa, Rutgers, UMD, OSU, UM, IU
      West: MSU, PU, NU, Neb., Iowa, UW, Minn., ILL.”

      Easy but crappy. B10 – OSU – MI – IN + NE versus ACC + BE + PSU + OSU + MI + IN

      Since when did OSU and MI agree to leave the B10 and join the ACC?

      “Indiana and UM prefer being in the east because of alumni presence in the northeast (especially NYC).”

      Even MI would like to play B10 teams on occasion.

      “MSU is happy because it gets its regular Chicago exposure (massive MSU alumni presence in Chi). Wisconsin gets Iowa and Neb every year. PSU gets several nearby rivals.”

      That leaves a bunch of team that might not be so happy.

      “Also, don’t forget Gordon Gee’s statements that some schools in the midwest were also potential targets, too (here’s looking at you, Kansas).”

      ND is also in the midwest. And Gee says a lot of things. Don’t you forget that 16-20 has been mentioned.

      “I would take Kansas over Duke or GT any day, based on third-tier rights,”

      Duke is worth the same or more, especially with the BTN trying to crack NYC.

      “a reputable research university,”

      GT and Duke are both much better research schools. Not even close. MCUP list for federal expenditures:
      12. Duke – $439M
      22. GT – $322M
      100. KU – $73M

      “dominant basketball,”

      See Duke.

      “presence in good markets (Kansas City, along with other midwestern and southwestern cities),”

      Atlanta and NYC are pretty good. So is Charlotte.

      “built in rivals,”

      Who? NE in football? Duke/MD is a rivalry in hoops (mostly for MD) and lacrosse. Duke/UNC is real and valuable (should those both be added). None of the 3 have strong ties to existing B10 members really.

      “and the ability to balance east-west divisions.”

      You shouldn’t add a school just for that.

      You also forgot demographics and state population (BTN subscribers), both of which favor Duke and GT. On the other hand, you also ignored culture which would favor Kansas. What about decent football (GT)?

  34. Wainscott says:

    I do not see the allure of pods, either rotating or static. Divisions are far simplier and easier for the average mortgage-paying, child-raising, hard-working B1G or college football fan to understand without having to spend time to look it up.

    Most fans still cannot identify the teams in Legends and Leaders because most don’t have the time to spend to memorize relatively trivial things like “Which division is Purdue in?”. But they will somehow embrace rotating pods and learn who is in what pod and which pods is playing which, and who is in that other pod?

    K.I.S.S.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      I do not see the allure of pods, either rotating or static. Divisions are far simplier and easier for the average mortgage-paying, child-raising, hard-working B1G or college football fan to understand without having to spend time to look it up.

      Because, without pods or dynamic scheduling, certain teams would go many years without playing each other. For instance, in your proposed east/west, if there’s a 9-game league schedule and Michigan-Minnesota are locked, the rest of the western division would see Michigan only once in seven years. I think the league and the ADs would consider this intolerable.

    • cutter says:

      I agree with you that it will require some mental dexterity by the fans to understand that the pods would rotate on a bi-annual basis

      But as Marc Shepherd notes in his comments, a fixed division system with nine or even ten conference games means it takes awhile for teams to play one another–much longer than a pod system.

      What I think the fans would understand, however, is which teams are in that division in that particular year–regardless of the size of the conference (16, 18 or 20 teams). They’ll realize that most of the conference games will be played against teams in their division (which is currently the case) and that the division champions will meet in the B1G Conference Championship game (which is also currently the case). In that regard, there’s actually not going to be much change.

      • Wainscott says:

        I think Cutter and Marc Shepherd raise a good point about how pods might increase the frequency of teams playing each other. And I also agree that a divisional system is by no means perfect (ex. Northwesten hosting UM once every 7 years would be a terrible thing). I just think that the ease by which the casual fan can know and understand the makeup of a division, as welll as the intense difficulties in forming balanced pods, makes the divisional format the lesser of two evils.

        For example, if there are 16 teams and 4 pods, do the 4 kings each headline a pod, or are they geographic? Assuming UM and OSU are in different pods, they still must play annually. Moreover, schools would play 2 full pods, and part of a third. And God only knows what the B1G mamarketing department would name 4 pods.

        At a certain point, its important to note that athletics, as has often been said, is at the end of the day, the toy department of life. As we get older, we have less time to devote to what we would focus on as teenagers. The easiest organizational system, by virtue of how most other sports are organized, is the division/conference format. Its what people are conditioned to understand and accept. I don’t think the B1G has the single-handed ability to change how fans comprehend a conference’s organizational set up–and I don’t think the benefits are so great as to outweigh the real chance of failure.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          @Wainscott: It’s worth noting that in the NFL, all you know is that there are three particular teams you play every year. There is a system for determining the remaining 10 games of the schedule, but most people don’t know what it is: they just wait for the schedule to come out, and see who they’re playing that year. This doesn’t seem to have harmed the NFL.

          So it is hard for me to believe that fans need to know they’re in a locked group of eight. In fact, if you told them that they’d have one visit to Chicago every 14 years, they’d figure out pretty quickly that this was not the system they wanted.

          • BruceMcF says:

            Yes, “You play these three or four teams every year, you pay every Big Ten school at least once every three years.” That’d be the tl;dr message from a number of workable systems.

          • BruceMcF says:

            “You PLAY these three or four schools every year”. Whom you pay to play in your two or three OOC games is, of course, a separate matter.

          • Jericho says:

            The NFL schedule is ridiculously easy to know and I think most non-casual fans are well aware of it.

            Also does not hurt to know that 6/16 game and 3/8 home games will always be against the “rivals”

          • Brian says:

            I think a large majority of NFL fans have no idea how the schedule works because they don’t care. They know who they’ll play twice every year and they’ll look at the schedule to see the other 10. The same would be true of pods.

        • Blapples says:

          @Wainscott You know who else uses “pods” with resounding success? The NFL. Yes, they call them “divisions”, but they have 4 divisions in each conference.

          Why is college football so stuck on strictly 2 “divisions/pods/sisterhoods/etc.” within a conference? People don’t have trouble remembering the AFC North “pod”, or the NFC East “pod”.

          • BruceMcF says:

            Because due to the myth of student athletes playing AAA minor league football in the SECm Big Ten, Pac-12 and etc., the number of practices they have and games they play is limited, and there is at present no permission to have a semi-final, final conference championship.

            Allow a two round championship, and the conference can divide into three divisions, play three division champions and wild card, the division round robin only requires five games, so even playing nine conference games would allow every team to play every other team in a three year cycle.

          • Wainscott says:

            I was hoping folks would bring up the NFL, as on the surface its a good comparison, but fails in the final analysis.

            NFL: 32 teams, 16 games, 4 team divisions. 16 team playoff. No preserved non-divisional rivalries (NE-IND play most years because 1st place teams play other 1st place teams). NFL does not make a real effort to foster non-divisional rivalries. There is no other football league for upset/disenfranchised former rivals to jump to.

            B1G: 14/16/? teams, 12 games (for now). The critical difference is that the close-knit nature exists because of rivalries–ones that might seem insignificant to the outsiders (ex. Iowa-Wisconsin). Without those rivalries, there is no mystique, no allure to the college game. Unhappy schoo;ls can potentially jump to another conference (http://espn.go.com/blog/bigten/post/_/id/67531/alvarez-b1g-added-to-avoid-losing-psu).

            Tne NFL is the most powerful, most lucrative league on the continent. But because they essentially have pods does not mean they would work in college, with less games, more hardcore rivalries, and more history. Moreover, there is no other professional league that unhappy teams can jump to. If UM and OSU down the road become dissatisfied with the B1G, they can leave. NFL teams don’t have that ability.

            Anywho, just my two cents. Debate is good. Passion is good. Its what makes college sports different from the pros (and this is coming from a NYer who did not give two turds about the college game before going to a B1G school for undergrad).

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            @Waiscontt: You need to take the NFL analogy for its intended purpose: to disprove the statement that a rotating schedule confuses the fans too much. The NFL (indeed, all the pro sports) show that this isn’t the case.

            You’re entirely right that CFB fans have a larger network of schools they want to see on a recurring basis. Static 8-team divisions frustrate that aim. You suggested:

            East: PSU, UNC, UVa, Rutgers, UMD, OSU, UM, IU
            West: MSU, PU, NU, Neb., Iowa, UW, Minn., ILL.

            In this system, Michigan fans will see North Carolina about 7X more often than they’ll see Wisconsin (assuming 9 conference games and Minnesota locked). They’re smart enough to figure out that there’s a better way.

          • Blapples says:

            @Wainscott You misinterpreted the argument as Marc Shepard said. You argued that pods are too complicated because the dumb general public won’t like that they can’t rattle off the schedule off the top of their head.

            I don’t have the Cincinnati Bengals schedule memorized outside of Pittsburghx2, Baltimorex2, and Clevelandx2 and I sleep very well at night. If someone told me Ohio State had a pod of Team A, Team B, and Team C and that the rest of the schedule would rotate through the rest of the conference, I would do just fine with that. I’m also becoming a big fan of forgoing divisions/pods and simply protecting 3 games per school (like when the B1G added Penn Stat), rotating the rest of the schedule, and taking the top 2 teams for a CCG.

            Two static divisions don’t work for all the reasons people have laid out. You’re basically going to be locking 1 or 2 teams (one of which is likely Ohio State or Michigan) out of playing any of the original B1G with any frequency. That doesn’t work for any of the parties involved.

            Now, if we get to 22 teams, you could essentially ship Penn State off to play in the B1G East and have the original B1G + Nebraska in the B1G West. But that’s not a conference. Its 2 conferences with a scheduling agreement and a CCG.

          • Wainscott says:

            @Marc Shepherd- Fair enough. I just don’t think that pods are the way to go because of the learning curve involved with 1) organizing the pods 2) scheduling the pods, and 3) learning the makeup of the pods. Not that this would be hard to learn, but it would take time that most fans just dont want to devote to have to learn something as relatively trivial as pod makeup.

            People know B1G membership because its been around for over 110 years. People are alos resistant to change. Adjusting to a larger B1G, and the attendant side-effects is enough og a system shock for fans–no need to complicate matters with knowing and understanding pods. In the NFL, the pod system (which is essentially what the divisions are) works because there is not the same level of care or concern about non-0divisional opponents. People aren’t confused because, in addition to being the system in place for 40 years, it ju out of division rivalries are less important, and the pod makeup less important. People care less about the NFL’s inter-division schedule.

            Anywho, fun sparing with you–I am glad you’re a good sport and not someone who takes disagreements personally. I don’t think the division system is all that great–indeed, I wish the NCAA did not require them to have a championship game. A 9 or 10 game round robin would be best because it would allow for more fluid schedules and ensure more teams see each other.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            There are two separate issues in scheduling. What mechanism do you use? And how do you market it? There’s no question that a system with two static divisions of eight is very simple to explain. But in that system, there is a VERY large inequity between how often a team meets anothter team in its own division, and how often it meets teams in the other divisions.

            If they actually WANT that inequity, then all is well. In that case, the simplest solution turns out to be the best one, too. Otherwise, they have a dilemma: do they implement the simpler schedule, when that doesn’t actually give us what we want? Or do they do something more complex, and then work on how to market it?

          • BruceMcF says:

            There is no need for a fan to learn how the championship division schedule is organized over time ~ if they learn who is in their group, they know who they are going to play every year. If they look at the divisional standings on ESPN, they know who is in their division that year.

    • Brian says:

      Wainscott,

      “I do not see the allure of pods, either rotating or static.”

      Frequency of play against all the other teams in the conference, especially the true B10 teams.

      Basis for comparison:
      11 teams, 8 games, no divisions:
      2 locked teams – 2 teams 100%, 8 x 75%

      Comparison with and without pods
      1. 12 teams, 8 games, no locked games for simplicity:
      2 divisions – 5 x 100%, 6 x 50%

      No need for pods

      2. 12 teams, 8 games, 1 locked game
      2 divisions – 6 x 100%, 5 x 40%
      4 pods – 3 x 100%, 9 x 56%

      Pods could keep rivalries over 50% of the time, but not needed.

      3. 14 teams, 8 games, no locked games for simplicity:
      2 divisions – 6 x 100%, 7 x 29%
      4 pods – 3 x 100%, 10 x 50% OR 2 x 100%, 8 x 50%, 3 x 67%

      Playing teams 50% of the time versus 29% is a big difference. This is where pods shine.

      4. 14 teams, 9 games, no locked games for simplicity:
      2 divisions – 6 x 100%, 7 x 43%
      4 pods – 3 x 100%, 6 x 50%, 4 x 75% OR 5 x 100%, 8 x 50%

      Pods help less as the number of games increases.

      5. 14 teams, 9 games, 1 locked game:
      2 divisions – 7 x 100%, 6 x 33%
      4 pods – 3.5 x 100%, 9.5 x 58% (rough numbers because the math is ugly)

      This gets you back to where pods are helpful.

      6. 16 teams, 9 games, no locked games for simplicity:
      2 divisions – 7 x 100%, 8 x 25%
      4 pods – 3 x 100%, 12 x 33%

      Pods don’t help much here.

      7. 16 teams, 9 games, 1 locked game:
      2 divisions – 8 x 100%, 7 x 14%
      4 pods – 4 x 100%, 11 x 45%

      Back to a hug gain from pods.

      “Divisions are far simplier and easier for the average mortgage-paying, child-raising, hard-working B1G or college football fan to understand without having to spend time to look it up.”

      Nobody denies that. But certain setups really beg for the use of pods (or no divisions) to keep games frequent.

      “Most fans still cannot identify the teams in Legends and Leaders because most don’t have the time to spend to memorize relatively trivial things like “Which division is Purdue in?”.”

      There’s no excuse for a B10 fan not to know. Once you know where your school is, you only need to learn the 5 other teams in that division. if you haven’t figured it out yet, it’s because you don’t really care.

      “But they will somehow embrace rotating pods and learn who is in what pod and which pods is playing which, and who is in that other pod?”

      They don’t need to know all that. They only need to know who’s on my team’s schedule this year (that was true back in the days of 11, too), and what games are on TV this weekend (TV Guide or equivalent will tell you just like always).

      • Thanks for the breakdown, Brian. Good stuff.

        I don’t know what will happen next for Big Ten expansion. But I hope that PODS will be the result…and I think your study backs up that PSU (my team) should have 3 regional foes (ideally OSU, UMD, Rutgers, but I’m flexible for a more Southern ACC team thrown in there) and 1 locked foe (ideally Nebraska, which I think is feasible since the Big Ten will want to protect its marquee games, even if it means tougher schedules for their alpha dogs). I don’t care about Purdue and Iowa and even Michigan rotating on and off the schedule every few years. But regional foes and a marquee game (at least Nebraska OR Ohio State) are optimal in my opinion.

  35. zeek says:

    How big would the T1 Big Ten hoops contract get with UNC and Duke?

    We talk alot about their possible impact on the BTN, but outside of the UNC-Duke game, the Big Ten owns most of the big ratings matchups regardless.

    IU-Michigan and IU-Michigan State are the top two rated games this year.

    With UNC and Duke, the Big Ten would have to get something like $7-8 million per year per team for just hoops.

    This is also a part of why I think Duke is a given.

    • bullet says:

      C7 is $36-$48 million total ($3-$4 million per school-12 schools). Don’t see how UNC and Duke bring in $112-$128 million (16 X 7-8 per school).

      • zeek says:

        The conference would probably end up owning at least a half of the top 15 rated regular season games every year. You don’t think that’s worth $7-8 million per school?

        • BruceMcF says:

          That’s from $112m to $144m that you are saying ~ and, no, I don’t think it would.

          Duke and UNC being added to form a 16 or 18 team conference adds multiple top match-ups, but also subtracts a few match-ups as well, since a number of big Home and Away annual series go to Home or Away.

          If the Once Was Big East was worth $130m with its basketball considered half of the value or less, then its hard to see an incremental value for UNC and Duke basketball in the nine figures. Low eight figures sees more plausible ~ say, +$20m, which would be +$1.1m~$1.25m per team. Maybe $1.5m over time when NCAA units are added in.

          If half of that incremental value goes to Duke, then there’s your dilution of the conference payout when Duke is invited. For UNC, its on top of the value of cable carriage in NC and the value of its football, which if not at the level of FSU still has value in a number of top fifty media markets.

        • Chuck says:

          No, it’s not. Basketball, even at the superpower UK/Duke/UNC/Kansas level, brings in much less than football, and it’s not even close. You don’t even have to take my word for it.

          Go check out the contract amounts that big time college basketball brings to each conference. It’s chump change compared to the kind of money that FBS football brings in.

          The B1G isn’t expanding into the southeast to get better basketball players or better basketball schools. It’s doing it to expand football’s recruiting window and to ensure that the B1G adds faster growing states into its core football area.

          • @Chuck – Yes and no. I agree that the first tier TV contracts for conferences are 99% about football. The South also provides a stronger football recruiting presence. However, basketball is actually extremely critical in terms of getting basic cable carriage for the BTN and other conference networks. That’s the sport that keeps the lights on for a conference network beyond the 12 week football season even if the ratings on a per game basis are lower. If the Big Ten is able to add UNC, for example, the BTN’s carriage in North Carholina will end up having more to do with UNC basketball than its football program. We already have a situation like that with the state of Indiana. So, it’s a broad misnomer to say that basketball doesn’t bring value. It may not bring much value to a league like the Big 12 that doesn’t have its own conference network, but it’s a much different story for the Big Ten with the BTN.

    • zeek says:

      Think about it like this, a Big Ten with UNC/Duke/Indiana/Michigan/Michigan State/Ohio State (as well as the rest of the other hoops draws like Maryland, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Purdue) would be able to claim at least 7-8 matchups annually that would draw over a 2.0 nationally.

      Most leagues can’t put together more than two matchups that draw that rating…

    • metatron says:

      The Big Ten already renewed their basketball deal, so not much if any. The money would have to come from advertisements on the BTN, but let’s not delude ourselves to think premier matchups would fall to the network.

    • bullet says:

      Interesting. I will add on Texas with 86 according to his list-The Texas site I saw just before signing day had 82-67 remaining and 15 signees. There were also 3 roster players who were non-scholarship.

    • DR says:

      As a resident of the great state on Minnesota I am proud that our state flagship university managed to both make the oversigning list and have the worst rated recruiting class in the Big. This could not have been easy.
      DR

    • BuckeyeBeau says:

      this is precisely why the SEC has won seven in a row. the SEC West will continue winning as long as they continue to oversign.

      this is a huge competitive disadvantage for the B1G. the SEC (West) must stop or the B1G must start.

      • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

        Beau – There are three B1G members on that list too, as well as two schools (UTx and ND) that the B1G lusts after.

        In the BCS era, the SEC West has won 6 championships (Alabama – 3; LSU – 2; and Auburn – 1). LSU and Auburn aren’t on the list. Ole Miss and A&M are, but haven’t sniffed any NCs since the 60s (Ole Miss) and the 30s (A&M).

        The factor about half of the teams on that list have in common is 1st or 2nd year coaches.

        • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

          That list also only tells part of the story. What’s more important is the four year total number in the first column. That number shows the long term trend rather than just a potential outlier. Using those numbers the 3 SEC schools on the list have signed 105, 105 & 101 players over 4 years whereas the 3 B1G schools brought in 96, 94 & 86. Having nineteen more players come through your roster over a single graduating period is pretty significant.

        • Ted says:

          @Alan
          Because it’s a terrible article. Michigan State has signed 86 guys over four years but will be 2 over the limit? That should set off your ‘journalist playing with numbers he doesn’t understand’ alarm The fact that a few Big Ten teams have 1 or 2 extra guys is most likely due to people that will not be a part of the 2013 season that have not been made public.

          For example, Michigan will have exactly 85 on scholarship this fall due to 2 kids that will no longer be playing football next year. The athletic department has not released this information to the media yet.

          The difference with Saban and Les Miles is they do things like sign 5, 6, 7 guys over the limit and never explain it…then you have stories about guys being told to transfer, using medical hardship scholarships 5-6x more than the NCAA average, having a scholarship yanked after moving into the dorms and taking summer classes, etc etc etc.

          One is standard terrible use of data by a journalist. The other is oversigning.

          • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

            Ted – LSU isn’t on the list, even though LSU had a record number of draft-eligible players declare for the NFL draft this season. LSU also has the second highest graduation rate for football players, only behind Vandy. I’m not aware of LSU using medical hardship scholarships 5-6x the NCAA average.

            There will always be player attrition at every school, some more than others. But to assume that running kids off is the only reason SEC West schools have attrition that exceeds the B1G is simplistic. Most three and four star recruits would rather play football than sit on the bench, even if its a very nice bench at a prestigious school. If a multi-star recruit isn’t playing, he may want to transfer. It looks like that happens more in the south than it does in the north. Maybe the bench-sitting player in the north decides to stay because he ‘s attending an AAU school. Maybe a bench-sitting player in the south is more likely to transfer because he thinks he’s an NFL talent that just needs to get on the field more.

            Discipline issues, academic casualties, injuries, new coaching staffs, homesickness, and the NFL draft are also contributing factors in player attrition.

          • Mike says:

            @Alan – LSU is one of the team’s I root for. I wouldn’t say I’m a big fan but I enjoy watching LSU when they’re on. They’re probably my favorite SEC team. From my perspective, Les Miles is willing stretch the signing budget farther than most. That impression is probably shaped by a couple of high profile incidents (i.e. they player that moved into the dorms before being told he didn’t have a scholarship) and I’m willing to admit may not be entirely fair.

            On the flip side, I wish Bo Pelini had paid attention to how Les managed his roster. Nebraska’s three Big Ten classes have all been undersigned.

      • metatron says:

        The Big Ten should never start. I don’t care if they lose forever.

        It’s a terrible thing to do to these kids and anyone involved in the process should be ashamed of themselves.

  36. Wainscott says:

    This is another reason the B1G wants UVa:

    http://abcnews.go.com/Business/top-15-universities-wealthy-alumni/story?id=18539608#all

    See #11 on the list.

    • BuckeyeBeau says:

      Michigan and Northwestern on the list too. Interesting.

    • metatron says:

      Because they want a public donation?

    • C. Toda says:

      The addition of the UVA is perfect . UVA fits with the big ten .The NC schools do not fit, just leave them alone it their ACC . Finally who is 16 ,I again vote for Pitt ,small TV but very good in everything else. The loss of Pitt and UVA will alow the ACC to remain stable . Maybe in 20 years we can look at NC .There is no reason to rush and cause internal problems in the Big .

      • Bikemore says:

        Pitt and UVa would be my choices too. Sadly, Pitt will not happen.
        Maybe if Pitt had kept their program at where it was in the 70s and early 80s.

  37. jj says:

    A bit off topic, but maybe not entirely. I would like to see more programming on the BTN that talks about things the schools are up to and/or their histories from an academics or human interest angle. I think that would be a good selling point for everyone and could help build cohesion in the world of expansion. How many talking head shows and reruns do we really need anyway.

  38. Bob in the Triangle says:

    While UNC is an attractive target for my B1G, the timing seems off. Living in the Triangle, I believe a BiG response is far down the to-do list for UNC. There is no Chancellor (he just left for WashU). The AD has 2 years of tenure and no real power. The school is working through academic fraud where athletes received high grades for bogus classes. The Board of Governors is fighting with the Legislature over funding.
    I believe UNC and others will join the B1G by the time the BTN contract is up for renewal in 2 years. If the new Chancellor is from a B1G institution then we can look for a Maryland-Loh repeat for B1G membership.

    • Wainscott says:

      As a Triangle resident, can you shed light on UNC vs. Duke?

      My non-resident understanding is that UNC is the overlord of the state, based on the sheer size of its alumni base, whereas outside of Durham, Duke is hated as an elitest, snooty private school. (Kind of like the NU-ILL split, minus the hatred). I also know that Duke has a wealthier and more national alumni base than UNC. What are your thoughts?

      • B1G Jeff says:

        Just an aside… Bad analogy, my friend (Chicagoan with degrees from both). U of I has much more cache downstate than in Chicago, which is where 70% of the population resides. It’s U of I’s great failure in being meaningful in Chicago that in large part allows the MSUs and NDs of the world to recruit there.

        Admittedly, NU is kind of ‘just there’ minding its own business, but it’s making grand efforts to improve its presence in Chicago (marketing, the Wrigley initiative, etc.). Hell, U of I-Chicago is better situation than U of I -Champaign / Urbana, at least wrt basketball.

      • Gailikk says:

        I can vouch for that, Duke is hated outside of Durham (in basketball) and not followed in football at all. I have a lot of friends who pay for tickets to watch a specific team coming to duke to deliver them a whooping. As for UNC as the overlord, yeah thats true also. Lot of UNC fans, but in raleigh you have a lot of NC state fans as well. I guess what I am saying is if you want most of north carolina (say 60%) UNC can deliver, but NC State and Duke are the other 40%

      • Bob in the Triangle says:

        UNC carries the state from an audience perspective. Duke is an Ivy League school which happens to be 15 minutes from UNC. Duke has a small but wealthy alumni base in DC and NYC. The rivalry is only about basketball as neither program has national aspirations in football. Both compete in Olympic sports and are Top 20 Directors Cup programs (as is UVa).

    • BruceMcF says:

      Its the first tier contract with ABC/ESPN that is coming up for renewal. The Big Ten owns a big chunk of the BTN, so there is no contract expiration issue with the BTN.

  39. Here is something that doesn’t get brought up enough. UNC and NCSTATE are run by the exact same board. There is absolutely no way that those two schools can split. It will not happen. I also believe that UNC will not leave Duke although that would be possible. If Delaney wants UNC, he’ll have to take NCState. Make no mistake Slive will take all three if he has too.

    • Psuhockey says:

      If NC State has a nice lucrative landing spot in the SEC, I can’t see how they would mind. Both schools would profit greatly as would the triangle in general. Imagine the business that area would do if NC State had rotating home games against UF, UGA, Tenneessee, South Carolina, and Alamba, LSU, and Texas A&M every once in a awhile and UNC had rotating home games against PSU, Michigan, OSU, and Nebraska and Wisconsin occasionally. There would be at least 4 knock out dates with large traveling fan bases willing to dump money into the Triangle every year. Most boards are made up of business people and politicians. They would love that.

      • Andy says:

        the SEC doesn’t want NC State. They want UNC. If anything they’d likely take FSU over NCSU, and might even refuse to take NCSU if it would mean the B1G didn’t get UNC.

    • BruceMcF says:

      That gets brought up constantly in the discussions in this board, but rather in terms of UNC not being able to leave NC State stranded in a wounded ACC. If NC State was assured of landing in a conference that it was happy to be in, would it necessarily have to be the same conference as UNC ended up in?

    • Bob in the Triangle says:

      I have pondered the NCState-UNC issue as well. The Board which governs both schools also controls the other 16 member institutions. The Boards primary purpose is to keep schools from duplicating expensive programs. The Board can influence but not stop any institution.
      When the ACC split into the Atlantic and Coastal Divisions (only slightly better than Legends and whatchacallit) UNC and Duke were kept together while NCState was paired with Wake Forest. I think UNC can politically maneuver any outcome it chooses.

      • The problem is that I am pretty sure UNC has no interest in letting State in the SEC without them. If State was in the SEC it would immediately become more prestigious in football than UNC. If I know UNC, they won’t let State become more prestigious than them in anything. I know a bunch of UNC alums are paranoid that State in the SEC could be another Texas A&M which hasn’t worked out well for the Longhorns. Not to mention, State would immediately be the third or fourth best basketball program in the SEC and could conceivably compete for a title every year. In the Big 10, UNC would not be able to have anywhere near the level of dominance it has historically had. I know the Tarheels would hate seeing The Wolfpack win titles every couple years while they struggle to win one in five. My understanding is that the board has an board has an equal number of members from UNC and NCState. No way do they split. On a side note, I’m not sold that the SEC would take NC State alone or even necessarily in a pair with Va Tech. That would mean that the SEC would look like it was being forced to take the schools the BIg Ten didn’t want, which I don’t think sounds or looks too appealing.

        • frug says:

          That would mean that the SEC would look like it was being forced to take the schools the BIg Ten didn’t want, which I don’t think sounds or looks too appealing.

          The SEC already did that when they took Missouri…

          • Andy says:

            No it isn’t. The SEC didn’t want Nebraska along with the B1G and then had to settle for Missouri for their 12th spot. The SEC moved to 13 and 14 before the B1G and thus got 1st crack at that tier of addition. Right now the SEC and B1G are both after the exact same school for their 15th spots. Totally diferent than the Nebraska/Missouri decision that the B1G had.

          • frug says:

            The SEC didn’t want Nebraska along with the B1G and then had to settle for Missouri for their 12th spot.

            What?

          • Andy says:

            You’re saying UNC vs NCSU for spot #15 of the B1G and SEC is the same thing as Nebraska vs Missouri for spot #12 of the B1G. It’s not. For one, the SEC already had a school #12: Arkansas. Also, the SEC didn’t want Nebraska. So no, it’s not the same thing.

            The B1G didn’t want Missouri as #12, but they very well could have as a #14, just like the SEC did. There was never a point in time where both conferences were expanding at the same time, competing for the same school and the B1G got it and the SEC settled for their second choice. This has never happened.

          • frug says:

            So what you are saying (and let me summarize) is that Missouri wanted to join the Big Ten, the Big Ten didn’t want them and then the SEC took them.

        • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

          Average attendance figures from 2012 for recent movers and rumored movers.

          Texas A&M 87,014
          Nebraska 85,517
          Florida State 75,601
          Mizzou 67,476
          VA Tech 65,632
          West Virginia 55,916
          NC State 54,106
          North Carolina 50,286
          Louisville 49,991
          Rutgers 49,188
          Miami 47,719
          Virginia 46,650
          TCU 46,047
          Colorado 45,373
          Utah 45,347
          GA Tech 43,955
          Pitt 41,494
          Syracuse 37,953
          Maryland 36,023
          UConn 34,672
          Cincy 29,138
          Duke 28,170

          • Brian says:

            I’m amazed Duke was that high. They must count a lot of empty seats as sold tickets.

          • bullet says:

            This was their best season since Spurrier was coach.

            Looking at the final AP poll ratings in the BCS era, there were only 4 Big 5 schools who didn’t ever place. Supposedly, the SEC wants two of them. Pretty easy to guess who the other two besides UNC and Duke are. Think NCAA bb titles. UK and IU.

        • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

          So you’re saying NCST football will be more successful because of a tougher SEC and NCST BB will be more successful because of a tougher B1G eh?

          • I didn’t say more successful. I said more prestigious. The games that NC State would get in the SEC would be much bettere than UNC in the Big Ten. Especially for recruiting purposes. The SEC has a perception (largely real partially overblown) that it it is far superior football conference to the Big Ten. If you’re a recruit in Charlotte, would you rather play in the SEC or the BIg Ten? For most kids in the South, and North Carolina is definitely the South, that’s a no-brainier.

  40. [...] B1G Dirty South Expansion. - “…I’ll reiterate that the Tar Heels are going to be one of the toughest nuts to crack in conference realignment (if they’re even crackable at all) since TV money alone isn’t going to sway them.  The ACC culture is strong at that school and, even if there are other defections from that league, UNC alone could keep the rest of the conference together just as the presence of Texas kept the Big 12 together…” [...]

  41. bamatab says:

    It looks like WVU’s move to the Big 12 has them running in the red this year, but a lot of that has to do with the exit fee that they had to pay the Big East. But with that said, according to the article predictions are that losses could continue for many years to come.

    http://www.register-herald.com/collegesports/x1633486561/Is-West-Virginia-s-move-to-Big-12-Conference-worth-the-red-ink

    • Mike says:

      IMHO – the Mountaineers made the right decision. What that article is assuming is that the AD wouldn’t be in debt if it didn’t move. I imagine they would still have significant budget problems if they stayed in the Big East.

    • jbcwv says:

      The writer is not taking the long view. WVU in the nBE would be looking at 15-20 million less TV revenue per year. Deficits look bad at a school that has normally been in the black, but the present revenue crunch, even if it lasts a few years, will be a blip compared to the long term bloodletting that would result from remaining in the big east, which was the only available alternative to paying to join the big 12.

    • Mack says:

      Deficit was for the last year WVU was in the Big East. WVU needs to compare B12 $$ to the new BE contract $$ to see how they did. They came out way ahead. Even 50% share for 2012-13 is way ahead of what they would receive in the BE. If they had a full B12 share which they will get in 2015-16 it would have been a profit. So the deficits will not last too many years and will be lower than what would have occurred if WVU had stayed in the Big East.

  42. boscatar says:

    If the SEC or Big Ten can provide a better future, don’t think for a minute that Texas, Oklahoma, and Kansas won’t bolt from the Big 12. The grant of rights don’t last forever and there is always a business solution to get out of contractual commitments.

    What if the goal for the end game for both the SEC and Big Ten is to get to 18-20 teams? What about this?

    SEC adds Texas and Oklahoma in the West and Virginia Tech and NC State in the East. goes to 18 teams with 3 six-team pods. Play 5 against your pod and 2 from each of the other two pods for a 9-game conference schedule. Play everyone in the conference at least every 3 years.

    East pod – Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, NC State, Virginia Tech, Kentucky

    Central pod – Alabama, Auburn, Mississippi, Mississippi State, Vanderbilt, Tennessee

    West pod – Texas, Texas A&M, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Missouri, LSU

    Big Ten adds Virginia, UNC, Duke, Georgia Tech, Florida State, and Kansas. 20 teams in 4 five-team pods. Play 4 against your pod and 2 from each of the other three pods for a 10-game conference schedule. Play everyone in the conference at least every 3 years (some more often).

    South – Florida State, Georgia Tech, UNC, Duke, Virginia
    East – Maryland, Rutgers, Penn State, Michigan, Michigant State
    Central – Illinois, Northwestern, Indiana, Purdue, Ohio State
    West – Nebraska, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Kansas

    ACC – again raids the Big East – left with: Miami, Clemson, Wake Forest, BC, Pitt, Syracuse, Louisville, Notre Dame (partial member still) grabs Cincinnati, South Florida, and UConn from the Big East. Stays at 11 for Olympic sports. 10 for football.

    However, the PAC 12 might have an attractive bid for Texas and Oklahoma if the PAC 12 is willing to accommodate Oklahoma State and perhaps Texas Tech.

    Big 12 raids the MWC by grabbing Boise State, BYU, Air Force, UNLV, and SDSU and grabs Houston and Memphis from the Big East. Goes to 14 teams with a conference championship.

    Big East leftovers Temple, UCF, Tulane, Navy, and East Carolina grab whatever they want from the C-USA, Sun Belt, and MAC and carry on.

    • greg says:

      “If the SEC or Big Ten can provide a better future, don’t think for a minute that Texas, Oklahoma, and Kansas won’t bolt from the Big 12.”

      SEC has supposedly shown interest in Texas and Oklahoma in the past, heavy interest in Texas, and they’re still in the B12. It may happen, but they aren’t pining away for an invite.

      “SEC adds Texas and Oklahoma in the West”

      Good luck adding those two without OkSU or Texas Tech. Not impossible, but its a hurdle.

      • boscatar says:

        Although, who thought Texas A&M would be able to leave without Texas? Issue with Texas and Oklahoma (to the SEC or PAC 12) is whether either conference wants OSU or TTech. This time around, I don’t think the PAC 12 would be willing to take OSU or TTech. In terms of potential value, Oklahoma State doesn’t seem to add much that Oklahoma doesn’t? Same is true for Texas Tech and Texas.

        More likely scenario for PAC 12 expansion, would be for the conference to go after Texas, Oklahoma, and Kansas. They would need one other school to get to 16. Candidates could include UNLV or BYU, but I’d bet they would go after Iowa State first.

        • greg says:

          Iowa State in the PAC? I’ll take the odds on that.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          …who thought Texas A&M would be able to leave without Texas?

          We’re talking about opposite cases. Texas A&M was the “little brother” school in the Big XII. They could leave, and the Big XII remained viable, since it still had Texas. But if Texas leaves, the Big XII (as we have known it) probably can’t survive.

          • frug says:

            Actually, that’s not quite accurate. The reason A&M was able to leave was because the state legislature was out of session for two years and the only person who could call them back into the session was the governor who was an Aggie that was too busy running for president.

            Contrast to ’94 when the Big XII was being formed. At that time Texas and TAMU were only schools the Big 8 wanted, but because the legislature was in session the Speaker of the House ordered them to take Texas Tech and the Governor and Lt. Governor (an extremely powerful office in Texas since s/he is also the president of the Senate) forced them to take Baylor as well.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            @frug: It’s still the opposite situation. If the Big 8 had taken only Texas and TAMU, Tech and Baylor would have had to join a second-tier league, so the politicians ensured they were protected. In contrast, A&M leaving the Big XII didn’t jeopardize anyone; in fact, it paved the way for one of the former SWC schools (TCU) to play with the big boys again.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Kinda the same as UT wouldn’t have been allowed to “leave” them uninvited.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Oops… I restated what you said. Sorry…:(

          • greg says:

            None of the political stuff is binary. KU/KSU, OU/OSU, UNC/NCSU, UVA/VT. They all have _possible_ political entanglements, but they all have various factors impacted by time of year, who is currently in certain political offices, etc. etc.

            The UVA/VT situation was a very specific circumstance, where the ACC vote came down exactly on the number of votes needed, which allowed the UVA politicians to force the situation. Had the vote been nearly unanimous, UVA’s vote wouldn’t have mattered and VT wouldn’t have been forced in.

            Another poster just pointed out the situational differences between the B12 and TAMU moves.

          • frug says:

            @Marc

            Except that if Texas had wanted to, they could have ditched Tech and A&M last year also.

            For that matter, if the state legislature had been in session or a less sympathetic governor in office, UT probably could have blocked A&M from leaving (A&M timed their departure to coincide with the legislative session ending).

            In Texas the issue ditching siblings in only an issue if the legislature is in session.

          • Mike says:

            In Texas the issue ditching siblings in only an issue if the legislature is in session

            Don’t forget about Ken Starr and his lawsuit.

          • frug says:

            He never filed it and wouldn’t have.

        • ccrider55 says:

          “Candidates could include UNLV or BYU…”

          Or it could include an up and coming JC, or a non mainstream seminary?

          You haven’t been paying attention to this for long, have you?

          • boscatar says:

            Quite the contrary. Neither UNLV nor BYU is an academic fit with the PAC 12. But, if the PAC 12 needs a 16th school, both UNLV and BYU will be on the radar.

            The PAC 12 does not dominate the Las Vegas market. The move of the PAC 12 basketball tournament to Vegas shows that the PAC 12 is trying to get this market.

            UNLV basketball would compete right away in the PAC 12 basketball. UNLV also plans to construct a 60k-seat, state-of-the-art on-campus football stadium. This will make UNLV football competitive. Don’t right off UNLV so quickly in the long term view of expansion.

            BYU alumni already abound and BYU travels well, especially in the PAC 12 footprint. BYU would help the PAC 12 own the Utah and Vegas markets and solidify the PAC 12 footprint throughout the West.

            But, my point was that the PAC 12 would likely look at other options before seriously considering either UNLV or BYU. But, both UNLV and BYU provide value and there aren’t many such alternatives in the West.

          • ccrider55 says:

            “The move of the PAC 12 basketball tournament to Vegas shows that the PAC 12 is trying to get this market.”

            No. They moved to a world wide entertainment center that can attract fans of all schools (even the one and done) at low cost that obviously don’t any more, or never did, care to go to LA yearly.

            On BYU, possibility<0. Their inclusion in any package, including UT (see: Baylor) would be a deal breaker. It is just the way it is.

          • frug says:

            UNLV is a potential target, but BYU is a flat out never ever going to happen in this lifetime. The PAC is even more hardline on their no religious schools recruitment than the Big Ten is on their AAU requirement.

          • Biological Imperiative says:

            “Actually, that’s not quite accurate. The reason A&M was able to leave was because the state legislature was out of session for two years and the only person who could call them back into the session was the governor who was an Aggie that was too busy running for president.

            Contrast to ’94 when the Big XII was being formed. At that time Texas and TAMU were only schools the Big 8 wanted, but because the legislature was in session the Speaker of the House ordered them to take Texas Tech and the Governor and Lt. Governor (an extremely powerful office in Texas since s/he is also the president of the Senate) forced them to take Baylor as well.”

            The Governor at that time was Ann Richard, (now dead) and the Lt. Governor was Bob Bullock (now dead as well). Although they were both democrats and Baylor alums and previous drinking buddys, by 1994, they couldn’t stand the sight of each other. Ann wanted to actually run the government and Bob was the Lt. Governor, who actually had the power. Bob was very happy to let Bush come in and be the figurehad while he ran the state. in 1994 Anne wasn’t even a facto in the decision, her base didnt care about college football and Ann was to busy trying to be reelected. just FYI

            “For that matter, if the state legislature had been in session or a less sympathetic governor in office, UT probably could have blocked A&M from leaving (A&M timed their departure to coincide with the legislative session ending).”

            My paranoia theory is that Gov. Perry told A&M to back down from going to the SEC in 2010 until he had gotten a big enough war chest agivend the legislature was out of session to go to the SEC. The Longhorn network was a gift to A&M because it gave them a reason to bolt.

            but then again what the hell do I know.

        • frug says:

          At least as long as David Boren is the president Oklahoma won’t leave Okie St. even they could (and with a Cowboy governor they probably can’t anyways)

    • ccrider55 says:

      “However, the PAC 12 might have an attractive bid for Texas and Oklahoma if the PAC 12 is willing to accommodate Oklahoma State and perhaps Texas Tech.”

      That was the PAC’s offer three years ago. Supposedly the PAC turned down OU and OkSU a couple years ago on their own. Who knows if the original offer to the four together would be repeated.

    • GreatLakeState says:

      If TEXAS wanted a new home they would go to the PAC or the B1G. I don’t think they would even consider the SEC.
      If the B1G could rope in ND, I think the B1G would become very attractive to them. If not, the PAC along with Oklahoma would be my guess.

  43. JEH says:

    I’ve heard it mentioned b4, but never had it clarified…does the Big Ten require expansion candidates to be in states contiguous to the Big Ten footprint?

    • boscatar says:

      I don’t think it is a requirement. But probably a preference. What about Big Ten expansion with UVA (Virginia/DC), UNC (North Carolina), Vanderbilt (Nashville – 1 million+ TV homes), and Georgia Tech (Atlanta).

      Vanderbilt might actually be competitive in the Big Ten South and the SEC probably wouldn’t mind.

      • vp19 says:

        If the Big Ten went to 20, Vandy might be part of the expansion in return for the presidents approving Florida State.

        • GreatLakeState says:

          Glad to see someone else sees the plausibility of Vanderbilt. If the B1Gs southeast expansion goes as planned and they add Hopkins for Lacrosse, I think Vandy is a very real possibility.
          Especially as a counterweight to FSU. Yes, Vandy is a founding member of the SEC, but an academic outlier that would feel right at home in an elite conference with southern partners UVA/UNC/DUKE/GT. Unlikely, but certainly plausible.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Glad to see someone remembering JHU. Amazing how suddenly they have almost disappeared from the conversation.

          • GreatLakeState says:

            I don’t think anyone (even at JHU) denies they’re fielding offers from conferences, I just think they’re waiting to see how it all plays out before deciding.

          • zeek says:

            ccrider55

            I don’t think we’ve forgotten JHU. They’re just sitting there percolating.

            They probably have an offer and are going to take their time about deciding what to do. It’s not an easy decision; they still have to figure out the TV deal on men’s lacrosse and how they’d make money in the Big Ten (what cut of BTN revenue would they get if they had to give up their ESPNU contract?) along with questions about whether they could compete in women’s lacrosse in the Big Ten.

          • metatron says:

            The Big Ten isn’t elite. We’ve got four prime schools, two of which are rebounding and two of which are floundering. Restarting the Magnolia league isn’t going to change that, and will harm the strength of schedule overall.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            I think @GLS was referring to elite academics, not elite performance on the football field.

          • metatron says:

            To paraphrase Cardale Jones: I can’t watch school.

      • frug says:

        Vanderbilt “delivers” Nashville worse than BC “delivers” Boston.

        • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

          which is to say about the same as GA Tech “delivers” Atlanta.

          • frug says:

            Georgia Tech has a much better following in Atlanta than BC or Vandy do in their home markets.

            That said, it is clearly not even close to the dominant school.

          • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

            frug – here’s the 2012 average attendance figures.

            http://www.al.com/sports/index.ssf/2012/12/college_football_regular-seaso.html

            GA Tech – 43,955
            Vandy – 37,860
            BC – 37,020

            Considering that GA Tech is a public school with much larger enrollment, a much larger alumni base, and a much larger metro area, the numbers back me up that Vandy delivers Nashville about as well as GA Tech delivers Atlanta. In fact, it looks likes Vandy does a slightly better job.

          • 12-Team Playoffs Now says:

            “frug – here’s the 2012 average attendance figures.

            http://www.al.com/sports/index.ssf/2012/12/college_football_regular-seaso.html

            GA Tech – 43,955
            Vandy – 37,860
            BC – 37,020

            Considering that GA Tech is a public school with much larger enrollment, a much larger alumni base, and a much larger metro area, the numbers back me up that Vandy delivers Nashville about as well as GA Tech delivers Atlanta. In fact, it looks likes Vandy does a slightly better job.”

            Correct. UGA is less than 70 miles from downtown Atlanta and is almost a suburb (in fact I’ve commuted between the two before.) In contrast UTn is 180 miles from Nashville, and so while they dominate the Nashville market, they certainly don’t feel a part of it. Having lived in both Atlanta and Nashville, I’d say Vandy and GA Tech (under)perform about equally in their home markets, for different reasons and in different ways. Vandy’s broadcasts seems more 2nd rate and GT’s more professional, but a bigger percentage of Nashvillians (intentional, no letters please) follow Vandy than Atlanta residents follow GT.

          • Brian says:

            Alan,

            You have to look at more than just that.

            GT’s home games were Presbyterian, UVA, Miami, MTSU, BC, BYU and Duke. There’s not a single team that travels well in the bunch. They had UGA, Clemson, UNC, VT and MD on the road. Your link shows them down 9% from last year while Vandy was up 15% from last year.

            That means last year the numbers were more like:
            GT – 48,300
            Vandy – 32,900

            That’s roughly 50% more for GT. Considering stadium size, that’s a big difference.

          • bullet says:

            Its about an hour and 15 minutes from downtown Atlanta to the UGA campus. And that’s without a freeway and includes a number of stoplights. Usually takes about 65 minutes from the edge of the city limits of Atlanta to campus. Think downtown Atlanta to downtown Athens is just over 55 miles.

          • frug says:

            I can only find records for both schools going back to 2003, but last year was only the second time (and the first since 2008) that G-Tech averaged less than 10,000 more attendance than Vandy.

            Maybe things are shifting, but last year was probably an anomaly.

          • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

            frug – Atlanta is the #9 MSA with a population of 5.36mm, while Nashville is the #37 MSA with a population of 1.6mm. Vandy is planning on expanding their stadium and is trending up. GA Tech peaked in the 1950s.

            Brian – given the relative size of the metro areas and using your 2011 attendance numbers, Vandy still has twice the support in Nashville than GA Tech receives in Atlanta.

            Both are in NFL cities. GA Tech has twice the enrollment and more than half of their students are from Georgia, while only about ten percent of Vandy’s students are from Tennessee. In spite of all GA Tech’s advantages, any way you cut it Nashville supports Vandy much better than Atlanta supports GA Tech. So yes, Vandy delivers Nashville better than GA Tech delivers Atlanta. That’s why, at least from an athletic perspective, GA Tech is a terrible choice for B1G expansion.

          • Brian says:

            Alan from Baton Rouge,

            “frug – Atlanta is the #9 MSA with a population of 5.36mm, while Nashville is the #37 MSA with a population of 1.6mm. Vandy is planning on expanding their stadium and is trending up. GA Tech peaked in the 1950s.”

            http://www.tennessean.com/article/20130212/SPORTS0602/302120045/Vanderbilt-looks-ways-improve-stadium

            They hope to expand to a whopping 45,000. GT expanded to 55,000 10 years ago. They’ll be sad to learn they peaked 60 years ago.

            “Brian – given the relative size of the metro areas and using your 2011 attendance numbers, Vandy still has twice the support in Nashville than GA Tech receives in Atlanta.”

            Why on earth are you assuming some sort of linear fit should apply here? Is LSU 5 times more popular than UGA because they both sell out and Atlanta is 5 times bigger? How many of those fans in Nashville were even Vandy fans?

          • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

            Just by chance both Vandy & GT were in my list of extreme long shot candidates when I looked into the historical performance of various B1G teams & potential future numbers right after Nebraska joined and they were deciding on how to choose divisions…

            http://i49.tinypic.com/20kp3c9.png

          • frug says:

            @Alan

            You are absolutely right. In fact that is the same reason Vandy delivers Nashville better than USC does in LA.

            After all, USC only averaged 232.3% more attendance per game than Vandy but the LA metro area has 800% the population of Nashville, ergo Vanderbilt has 3.5 times as much support in Nashville than USC does in LA.

          • BruceMcF says:

            “In spite of all GA Tech’s advantages, any way you cut it Nashville supports Vandy much better than Atlanta supports GA Tech.”

            Unless you allow it to be cut in terms of absolute level of support. If you cut it that way, Atlanta supports GTech better than Nashville supports Vandy.

          • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

            frug – on a percentage basis, yes. There are obviously a lot more USC fans in L.A. than there are Vandy fans in Nashville due to the size of the MSA. There’s probably also a higher percentage of people in L.A. that are completely oblivious to CFB than in Nashville as well.

            My original point was that Vandy delivers its market “about the same as GA Tech ‘delivers’ Atlanta”. 2/20/13 at 7:23pm. I stand by that statement. Neither deliver their market. On a raw number basis, GA Tech performs a little better, while on a percentage basis Vandy comes out on top. Both schools lose out to their NFL teams and thier state schools. GA Tech may even be behind Auburn in Atlanta.

            The bottom line is that neither Vandy nor GA Tech give the B1G a good presence in their respective city, state, or region. Both Atlanta and Nashville are big NFL and SEC towns. In either Atlanta or Nashville, the B1G would be an afterthought, or worse, ridiculed as offering an inferior product.

            The B1G shouldn’t try to compete with the SEC in the South, just as the SEC shouldn’t try to compete with the B1G in the North. If the B1G feels compelled to expand, they ought to go after UVA to get both sides of the DC market. The DC burbs aren’t really Southern anymore. But going into North Carolina, Georgia, and the Florida panhandle is a different matter. Charlotte may not be Birmingham, but its not Minneapolis either.

            If the B1G can secure UVA, it ought to look at VA Tech to lock down Virginia and lock the SEC out, UConn to assist with the NYC market, Pitt, or Kansas.

            I don’t know if Delaney wants the ACC’s blood on his hands. The moves described above probably won’t cause the implosion of the ACC. If the B1G took UVA and VA Tech, UConn, Pitt, or Kansas, it probably wouldn’t compel the SEC to respond.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            @Alan: Your comment is contradictory, since you suspect Delany might not “want the ACC’s blood on its hands,” but you suggest that he would take two Virginia schools to “lock the SEC out.” My guess is: neither. He is not out to harm his colleagues; but he also doesn’t give a damn about their well-being, if he sees a way to make more money for his bosses. He would add UVA and VT together if he thought it made more money than adding UVA and someone else, or doing nothing. All of this talk about Vandy and Kansas is a red herring, because neither is available. No schools is leaving the SEC, and Kansas can’t hang K-State out to dry. Delany knows he could have had Pitt at any time, and as far as we know, he never so much as sniffed at them.

          • frug says:

            But going into North Carolina, Georgia, and the Florida panhandle is a different matter. Charlotte may not be Birmingham, but its not Minneapolis either.

            Ummm, the ACC was founded by a bunch of Mid-Atlantic schools but I seriously doubt they have any regrets about going into the Deep South to add FSU.

            Anyways, as elite public research universities the Big Ten has (at least) as much in common “culturally” with UNC and G-Tech as the SEC does with Missouri (an AAU school from a state that is 2/3 Midwestern) and Texas A&M (and AAU school that is 100% Southwestern), and I don’t think anyone is expecting the SEC to have long term problems with those additions.

            (I’ll also add that as the conference that has lead the nation in MBB attendance, revenue and TV ratings for years the Big Ten is also good economic fit for UNC as well)

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            The elusive goal of “cultural fit” is easy to wish for, but difficult to define. The only real constant in the Big Ten is that all of its members are academically elite. (And until recently, all were in the AAU.)

            Except for Northwestern, they’re all either THE flagship state school, or a VERY strong second (as in Michigan State or Purdue). In a hypothetical world where Northwestern hadn’t been a member all along, you’d probably say: “No chance they’re getting an invite.” But as far as I can tell, no one in the Big Ten, at least in modern times, has ever seriously suggested that Northwestern doesn’t belong.

            Culturally, Nebraska and Pennsylvania don’t have much in common at all, but both are in the Big Ten footprint.

            It’s well known that the Big Ten issued Notre Dame an invite years ago, and the Notre Dame faculty voted to join. Despite being in the footprint geographically, you could argue that Notre Dame is more culturally alien to the rest of the Big Ten than any school currently in the league, or any of those currently under serious discussion.

            Of course, the states in the current Big Ten footprint are not culturally homogeneous. Parts of southern Ohio feel more like Kentucky than the midwest. (Cincinnati’s airport actually IS in Kentucky.) Indiana is far more conservative than any other midwestern state. Rural parts of Pennsylvania have more in common with Appalachia. And so on.

            So, when one says that UNC (for example) is culturally southern, and would never fit, I am not really sure how true that is.

          • Brian says:

            Alan from Baton Rouge,

            “My original point was that Vandy delivers its market “about the same as GA Tech ‘delivers’ Atlanta”. 2/20/13 at 7:23pm. I stand by that statement.”

            I still disagree. GT does better than you give it credit for.

            “Neither deliver their market.”

            That I agree with.

            “Both schools lose out to their NFL teams and thier state schools.”

            True.

            “GA Tech may even be behind Auburn in Atlanta.”

            Not even close. Trust me on that.

            “The bottom line is that neither Vandy nor GA Tech give the B1G a good presence in their respective city, state, or region.”

            1. Let’s be clear. Vandy is not now, never has been nor ever will be a viable B10 candidate. They have less than zero interest in leaving the SEC.

            2. There is room for GT to grow. 10 years ago they were a bigger presence in Atlanta than they are now. The SEC’s recent run has drowned out the ACC in the southeast. GT in the B10 would be of more interest to the media as a story (for a while at least), and OSU and MI and PSU and NE coming into town would be big deals.

            3. The ACC did GT no favors. FSU and Clemson are both in the other division. That left GT with no big name ACC FB schools that would travel well to Atlanta. The lack of success by all ACC teams hurt everyone in the league, too.

            4. The national focus has shifted more to national titles than ever before. That hurts an above average program like GT that will almost never compete for a national title.

            “In either Atlanta or Nashville, the B1G would be an afterthought, or worse, ridiculed as offering an inferior product.”

            It already is. What might change is that when some of these people actually see a good B10 team play, they may acknowledge that the B10 isn’t so bad.

            “The B1G shouldn’t try to compete with the SEC in the South, just as the SEC shouldn’t try to compete with the B1G in the North.”

            If the B10 added GT, I don’t think the idea would really be to compete with the SEC in GA. The goal, I’d think, would be to become the clear #2 behind the SEC in GA (displacing the ACC) while getting more GA recruits, more BTN money and more research funding for the CIC.

            Just to be clear, I’m not in favor of the B10 adding GT (or anyone else). I’m just debating some of your arguments against it.

            “If the B1G feels compelled to expand, they ought to go after UVA to get both sides of the DC market. The DC burbs aren’t really Southern anymore.”

            I agree UVA should top the list (well, ND will always top it in terms of value, I suppose).

            “But going into North Carolina, Georgia, and the Florida panhandle is a different matter.”

            NC isn’t that different from southern VA. UNC would feel comfortable with UVA and MD and would respect the state of IN’s love of hoops. Also, UNC isn’t NC. The research triangle is more northern than the rest of NC. It’s all shades of gray. There are clear differences, but also some similarities. I’m not even sure you need to have one unifying culture in that sense. The focus on academics, research and a wide variety of non-revenue sports is a common culture that is just as important.

            “Charlotte may not be Birmingham, but its not Minneapolis either.”

            Columbus isn’t Minneapolis or Newark. St. Louis isn’t Birmingham. These new large conferences are not one culture anymore.

            “If the B1G can secure UVA, it ought to look at VA Tech to lock down Virginia and lock the SEC out, UConn to assist with the NYC market, Pitt, or Kansas.”

            I’ve trotted out the idea of VT as you probably know. With UVA that would make 16 and a wall to keep the barbarian hordes of the SEC trapped in the south. Is there more value in getting even bigger? Not with UConn or Pitt, and KU is not an option. Going beyond 16 would require going further south (UNC or FSU).

            “I don’t know if Delaney wants the ACC’s blood on his hands.”

            I don’t get that view. Schools leaving the ACC voluntarily isn’t anything Delany should feel bad about. The ACC painted themselves into this corner if this were to happen. Don’t insist on Raycom being part of the deal. Don’t focus on hoops over FB for so long. If the B10 can make a lot more from these same schools, you’re doing something wrong.

            “The moves described above probably won’t cause the implosion of the ACC. If the B1G took UVA and VA Tech, UConn, Pitt, or Kansas, it probably wouldn’t compel the SEC to respond.”

            I don’t see a need for tit for tat anyway. Slive has to look for what helps the SEC, not how big the B10 is. Once the SECN details are known, then he can decide what makes sense. Is FSU worth it to the SEC? Many speculate they would try to block the B12 from getting into FL, but do you waste a spot on blocking someone else (same issue the B10 has with VT)? Is adding NC to the network worth adding UNC and NCSU if the politicians demand it? The SEC may be better as is regardless of what the B10 does.

      • Andy says:

        Any talk of Vandy or Florida leaving the SEC is pure crazy. That is all.

        • vp19 says:

          Vanderbilt would be only a complementary addition (if Big Ten presidents sought a counterweight to Florida State as member #20). I doubt pursuing Vandy would be a lead-pipe cinch, but joining the Big Ten — especially alongside the likes of members from adjacent states such as Virginia, North Carolina, Duke and Georgia Tech — could have some allure for its administration.

        • gregenstein says:

          Agreed Andy. There should absolutely zero talk of anyone ever leaving either the B1G or the SEC.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      The Big Ten openly courted Texas, so it’s clearly not an absolute requirement. The only unknown is precisely what it would take to justify an exception.

      • ccrider55 says:

        “Courting” might be a bit strong, perhaps had exploratory discussions. I may be wrong, but my understanding was UT approached the B1G, but wore out their welcome quickly.

        • 12-Team Playoffs Now says:

          “I may be wrong”

          Yes you are, once again.

          • ccrider55 says:

            So…UT politely declined a wonderful offer of being one among equals, out of loyalty to the B12. Got it. Didn’t have anything to do with media rights and partner requirements? They would have quietly put those former requirements that were splitting the B12 away, not offered them as a price to join?

            I’ve been misinformed before, and will be again.

    • Mike says:

      @JEH – I seem to rember and interview with Delany around 2010 saying that schools do not need to be in contiguous states.

      • gregenstein says:

        There is no requirement, but that said, geography is a factor mostly for the outlier. The B1G won’t fool about adding a school “just for football” like the Big East was doing. It’s all or nothing, which could present a problem for a school like Florida State trying to send their olympic sports on trips to Minnesota and Wisconsin all the time.

        It’s much easier on the palette if, once in a while, the road trip was just to Georgia and North Carolina.

    • frug says:

      Even if it were a rule it wouldn’t matter. The league could just vote to waive the requirement.

    • BruceMcF says:

      It is known to be a publicly expressed preference of some stakeholders. But on the other hand, if GTech was available, the Big Ten schools where Engineering has a lot of clout would argue for setting contiguity aside if need be. An advantage of UVA/UNC/GTech/FSU is it would make FSU contiguous, which would take one possible objection off the table for a school sure to attract one very big objection and which might not be able to withstand additional objections on top.

    • Brian says:

      JEH,

      No, it doesn’t have to be contiguous according to the bylaws.

  44. Rich says:

    I’ve read in other places that a school lacking AAU membership has absolutely zero chance of getting into the B1G. Also, I’ve read that a few B1G members wanted to rescind Nebraska’s membership after they lost AAU status. But, there were not quite enough votes to get this done. I think FSU is a pipe dream. I’d love to see the B1G add FSU, Miami (FL), GaTech, UVa, UNC, Duke, Clemson and one other school in the East or South. This would allow there to be two divisions of 11 teams. A Midwest and a South/East division that would be very representative of culture and geography and would allow for the preservation of the rivalries the 22 schools most care about. But, this is also a pipe dream.

    • Mike says:

      @Rich –

      I’ve read in other places that a school lacking AAU membership has absolutely zero chance of getting into the B1G.

      Notre Dame isn’t AAU and would be invited if it wanted in.

      I’ve read that a few B1G members wanted to rescind Nebraska’s membership after they lost AAU status. But, there were not quite enough votes to get this done.

      Think that through and you will see that’s not true. 1) Nebraska’s AAU status was lost less than a year after its Big Ten invite. 2) Wisconsin and Michigan were leading the charge to remove Nebraska. Nebraska’s AAU stauts isn’t an issue.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      I’ve read in other places that a school lacking AAU membership has absolutely zero chance of getting into the B1G.

      We know this is not true, because Notre Dame had an invite previously, and it’s widely believed they could get in at any time, if they wanted to. I have never heard of any push to boot Nebraska out of the Big Ten. At the time Nebraska was admitted to the league, the review of their AAU membership was already underway, and the Big Ten presidents must have known that it might not end favorably. I am pretty sure that either Michigan or Wisconsin was on the AAU committee that was reviewing Nebraska’s status.

    • BruceMcF says:

      AAU membership is an easy way to answer concerns about academic status ~ as noted, Notre Dame is an example of a school with a good enough academic status that it doesn’t need to be an AAU school to pass muster.

      Whether three very good academic standing schools that taken together offer top 25 grad school programs across the board is sufficient to get the academic snobs to hold their nose and accept FSU is a question that may not be sorted out yet. If UNC is not yet available, it might be a question that waits until the SEC makes a first move.

    • Brian says:

      Rich,

      “I’ve read in other places that a school lacking AAU membership has absolutely zero chance of getting into the B1G.”

      It’s not true. Certain schools can get in without AAU status, like ND. But solid academics is important.

      “Also, I’ve read that a few B1G members wanted to rescind Nebraska’s membership after they lost AAU status. But, there were not quite enough votes to get this done.”

      They knew NE might get voted out when they invited them to join the B10. Besides, even if a few (MI and WI, maybe NW) wanted NE out, they wouldn’t have anywhere near enough votes. It would be roughly 2-11 or 3-10.

      “I think FSU is a pipe dream.”

      They are unlikely, yes.

      “I’d love to see the B1G add FSU, Miami (FL), GaTech, UVa, UNC, Duke, Clemson”

      Clemson has no shot. None.

  45. boscatar says:

    What if you turn this whole expansion discussion on its head and the Big 12 gets proactive and beats the Big Ten to the punch? Adds 6 ACC schools to get to 16. Florida State, Georgia Tech, Clemson, Virginia Tech, NC State, and Louisville. The Big Ten could still get UVA and UNC (and perhaps Duke and Syracuse…AAU members). The ACC wouldn’t die, but would definitely receive a demotion. The Big 5 would become the Big 4 and the Group of 5 would become the Group of 6.

    Big 12 pods:

    LoneStar: Texas, TTech, TCU, Baylor
    West: Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Kansas, Kansas State
    North: Iowa State, Louisville, West Virginia, Virginia Tech (the least cohesive pod – Iowa State is an outlier)
    South: Florida State, Georgia Tech, Clemson, NC State

    • ccrider55 says:

      You don’t think the B12 has suggested this? Nothing official obviously, because no one is leaving the ACC until it is crumbling. And the B12 doesn’t have the ability to set that off.

      • boscatar says:

        Is Big Ten expansion to grab UVA and UNC enough to set it off? Or does the ACC just regroup and add UConn and Cincy/Temple?

        • metatron says:

          Temple? You know it’s a bad day when Temple’s mentioned as a candidate.

        • Mack says:

          If UNC leaves every school that can will hit the exit. The SEC will be the first call with the B12 as the backup. The calculation at that point will not be last year’s payout of the ACC vs. B12, but what the future payout difference will be after the ACC’s is cut. Since the new Big East (CUSA2) is getting slightly more than CUSA money, a depleted ACC (BE2) is likely to get a 50%+ cut in TV money. .

          • BruceMcF says:

            In addition to the the NuBigEast (which I reckon is actually more like BE3), we can look at the Big East before the most recent round of raiding kicked off, when they were hovering on the borderline between AQ and Best of the Rest status and were offered $130m annually. Take a paycut for not having AQ status, and somewhere in the $5m to $10m per school payout conference would not be surprising, which would make for a conference standing midway between the Majors and the current Mid-Majors.

          • UVA follows UMD to Big Ten.
            SEC then goes for VaTech…
            …if FSU and Clemson know that an SEC invite isn’t coming, they’ll then bolt to the Big 12.

            The ACC can scramble to fill those 4 spots…but the value (particularly FSU’s football/markets/recruiting ground) will be far, far less.

            At that point, I think the floodgates would be opened…and UNC/Duke would become Ground Zero for SEC/Big Ten fight.

    • boscatar says:

      Or, get to 18 teams, and have three 6-team pods:

      West: TTech, TCU, Texas, Baylor, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State,
      Central: Kansas, Kansas State, Iowa State, Louisville, West Virginia, *Pitt/Syracuse/Cincy
      Southeast: Florida State, Georgia Tech, Clemson, NC State, Virginia Tech, *Miami/Duke

      Or, get to 20 teams, and have four 5-team pods:

      West: TTech, TCU, Kansas, Kansas State, *BYU/Boise State/UNLV
      Central: Texas, Baylor, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Iowa State
      North: Louisville, West Virginia, Pitt, Syracuse, Boston College
      Southeast: Florida State, Georgia Tech, Clemson, NC State, Virginia Tech

      • greg says:

        How do you expect B12 to pull this off? They can’t guarantee their current per-school payout to new members. It’d be a gamble. Why would these teams leave the ACC en masse? Especially the ones that may have a chance at the B1G or SEC.

      • Gailikk says:

        Boscatar,
        for that to happen six teams need to run, give up whatever the exit fee is (20-52 mil) all so they can jump into a conference that makes 20 mil/team/year and maybe make 36 mil over the lifetime of the contract. Im not a math major but if you pay 20 to leave, and you make 36 more, but you also have to pay travel costs, it probably isn’t happening. No I believe that the ACC reloads and keeps going. Just to make everyone aware, I’m not a ACC nut I just live in raleigh

        • boscatar says:

          The exit fee might be $10 million, not $50 million. That’s why all eyes are on the Maryland lawsuit.

          If the Big 12 adds 4-6 teams from new markets, especially if it includes good football markets like Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina, the Big 12 TV contract is going to continue to make $25+ million per team per year. Possibly more. If the ACC settles for a $20 million exit fee and if the ACC payout is $17 million, it only takes about two years to make the jump worth it. And this doesn’t factor in the piles of cash that will come when the redesigned Big 12 consistently gets teams into the playoff (which the ACC will have a hard time doing).

          Consider, which late-season match-ups would drive TV ratings more?

          Texas v. Clemson, Oklahoma State v. Florida State, Oklahoma v. Georgia Tech?

          OR

          Pittsburgh v. Clemson, Boston College v. Florida State, Wake Forest v. Georgia Tech?

          Travel costs are not that big of a deal if a strong ACC contingency comes along. And Austin and Dallas are closer to Tallahassee than Pittsburgh, Syracuse, and Boston.

    • frug says:

      The problem is, FSU is going to jump until they are absolutely convinced

      A. The ACC is no acceptable

      and

      B. They aren’t getting an SEC or Big Ten invite

      (Actually those are both true for G-Tech, V-Tech and NC State as well)

      I also suspect Miami would get an invite ahead of one of the non-FSU ACC schools unless they get hit with PSU like sanctions

      —–

      That said if the Big XII pulled this off I think it is far more likely that they would simply go East-West (with ISU in the East). The Texas and Oklahoma schools would all prefer to stay together (even though the only matchup that HAS to be played is the RRR), and the Oklahoma and Kansas schools would fight like hell to ensure they continue to play in Texas twice a year.

      Meanwhile, FSU would want as many games against the Eastern schools as possible since (as they have publicly discussed) half of all their out state alumni live in ACC states, while only 10% live in Big XII states (something I suspect is true for all the ACC schools). Plus East-West (if it included Miami) would give everyone in the East an annual game in Florida.

      Really, the only loser in E-W is ISU (who would no doubt be pissed about losing games against traditional rivals and bi-annual games in Texas), but as (arguably) the least valuable school still in a major conference the remaining schools could either buy them off in the form of extra conference distributions (they could say it was for the extra travel costs the Cyclones would endure) or just tell them if they don’t like the divisions they are more than welcome to join the MAC.

    • cfn_ms says:

      What’s the incentive for those 6 ACC schools to go to the Big 12? At least half of those have to think that an SEC and/or B1G invite could plausibly be on the table at some point, so why make a relatively lateral move and cut off that possibility? Someone like BC, Wake or one of the Big East refugees I could maybe see pre-emptively moving because they’d probably be SOL in an ACC collapse, but I have a hard time seeing those six choosing to start the ball rolling without getting an SEC or B1G invite.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      What if you turn this whole expansion discussion on its head and the Big 12 gets proactive and beats the Big Ten to the punch? Adds 6 ACC schools to get to 16. Florida State, Georgia Tech, Clemson, Virginia Tech, NC State, and Louisville.

      The problem is a combination of all the reasons others have given.

      The Big XII’s TV contract is paying them practically SEC money, and they get to split it among only 10 schools. Also, they don’t divide TV money equally: the big guys get more. Lastly, they’re growth-constrained, because a lot of their schools are in tiny markets, and they’re not going to have a league-wide cable network either. So they simply can’t add six schools without diluting revenue.

      On top of that, FSU and Georgia Tech both covet Big Ten invites (assuming they covet anything at all), while VT and N. C. State could get SEC invites if their state sister schools go to the Big Ten. None of these schools will go to the Big XII unless the ACC starts to collapse, or unless they know for sure that the Big Ten and/or SEC are no longer realistically available to them.

      So the Big XII needs to wait for the other shoe to drop. If the Big Ten takes two other ACC schools, while giving FSU a firm “no”, then FSU would start considering the Big XII. I am not sure how many schools the Big XII would take, but it’s hard to see six that would be accretive to revenue. The most I could see is four.

      • frug says:

        Also, they don’t divide TV money equally: the big guys get more.

        Not anymore. The Big XII adopted equal revenue sharing this year.

        • ccrider55 says:

          I was going to point that out too. However, with the rise of conference networks aren’t we approaching a similar imbalance. Won’t revenue from LHN, Sooner network, etc and the likelihood that the majority of the B12 will not come close to the top earners numbers just represent a shift in the method used to continue uneven distribution? Wasn’t this one of the concerns expressed by some of those exiting recently?

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          Thanks for the correction; I had missed that story. Of course, no conference shares literally everything equally. That’s part of the reason why B1G teams that fill huge stadiums every weekend are wealthier than those that don’t. The disparity is greater in the Big XII because they don’t have a conference-wide cable network, and UT is not required to share all of its LHN revenue [if there is any] with the rest of the league.

          A team like Iowa State isn’t in much of a position to complain, because if they weren’t in the Big XII, where would they go?

  46. tomdauwwg says:

    Spartans Buckeyes. Sparty doesn’t fear the nut.

  47. BuckeyeBeau says:

    BTN DEVOURS ESPN.

    How about this for an idea: 42 schools.

    That’s 20 in the B1G via the actual B1G going to 20 and then doing a merger with the BXII and the P-12. The extra six for the B1G are Duke, UNC, GT, UVa, Pitt and FSU (the CoP/C makes an exception since we’re going to 42).

    The Pac-12 and BXII (except TX) are interested because of the BTN and the boatloads of money. Texas is outvoted. All 42 schools love the idea of 49% share of a tv network that is devoted to college sports.

    With 42 teams, the BTN gets on the basic cable tier for 90+ cents per cable subscriber in every market in every State across the Union. Boatloads of $$.

    The BTN becomes the greatest competitor to ESPN. The $$ is so good, eventually the SEC wants in; the BTN and FOX devour ESPN.

    Hyperbole aside, it’s an interesting way to get to superconferences and has the advantage of a tv network 49% owned by the schools.

    • ccrider55 says:

      Pac12 still doesn’t see a reason to only get a 49% share when the P12N is 100%. Perhaps with the merger the PAC gains the B1G rights and returns 85%, keeping 15% for overhead?

      Just kidding…sorta.

      • BuckeyeBeau says:

        good point; I forgot the PAC-12 is 100% owned. OTOH, the BTN is successful ! Jury still out on the P12N; plus, no reason there can’t be duplications, right? just a matter of negotiation.

        • zeek says:

          It’s good to have Fox own 51% for this round of the BTN.

          Look at it this way; they’re the ones with the incentive to force the BTN down everyone’s throats in NYC, D.C., and potentially Atlanta if Georgia Tech comes around.

          Those are all difficult markets to crack.

          In 20 years, we can re-evaluation the deal and figure out if the Big Ten should own more or less…

    • GreatLakeState says:

      Yes, but the truth of the matter lies in the comments section, where larryphelps20 writes:

      The elephant in the room and the most likely conference to go to 18 or 20 is the B1G. In your rundown you list the transformation and distintegration of the various southern conferences. However, you fail to acknowledge that barring Michigan (who left the B1G in 1907 and rejoined in 1917) no other university has left the conference AND kept their varsity athletics. None. Zero. Nada. Why is that? Well, the glue that holds the B1G together comes in the form of something much stronger than merely an association of athletics. The conference’s higher commitment to academics and specifically research is what has bound it together and will bind it together going forward. These are institutions of higher learning above all else and while yes, it’s possible if the B1G gets to 18-20 members that some might splinter away. It isn’t very plausible. What other collection of academic and athletic universities would want to leave that AND come to the conclusion that they would be better off as a university? I just don’t see it.

      • bullet says:

        The truth is that commonality breaks down as you expand more and more. That’s why 20 puts B1G at long term risk. Maryland and Rutgers aren’t midwest schools, but are very much B1G like universities. Maryland was the only match in the ACC. The ACC AAU schools are much smaller than the B1G AAU schools.

        As I said previously, the Great Northwest (which stretched from Hawaii to Alaska to New Mexico), the Lone Star (TX/OK/AR), the MWC and Big East all got big and splintered. The Missouri Valley had the same evolution as the southern conferences. It got bigger with more different types of schools and splintered twice. The B1G and MAC have stuck with similar schools. That’s why they haven’t had as much turmoil.

        • bullet says:

          As the saying goes, the definition of insansity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result.

          • zeek says:

            You make fair points.

            But the main reason why a Big Ten 18-20 would likely hold together is that the schools all need each other.

            The current 12 Big Ten schools need the 6-8 East Coast teams that would be coming in for demographics, and those 6-8 East Coast teams would need the Big Ten’s football/basketball old-line money.

            That might be why it’d hold together. Nebraska only has around 1.8 million people. Nebraska needs the East Coast.

            Academic integration over time would also help.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          The truth is that commonality breaks down as you expand more and more.

          The truth is that many small conferences no longer exist, either. Being small offers no assurance of stability, as the now-defunct Southwest Conference could attest.

          The Big East was inherently flawed, and was never safe at any size. It needed to sponsor football, or it was going to lose its football-playing members, once the modern TV era made it no longer practical for major schools to be independent. This led directly to the strange bifurcated structure that was the cause of its undoing.

          So I think you need to look at what has successful conferences succeed, and what made failed conferences fail, rather than simply to say that there is some particular number, beyond which a conference cannot grow.

          • Stephen says:

            Yep, the Big 8 was small and had a lot in common, but disappeared.

          • ccrider55 says:

            It morfed, didn’t disapear. It took in refugees from collapsing SWC, and choose to begin again as a new conference. It could have (perhaps should have?) kept their history.

          • Stephen says:

            ccrider55 — It didn’t just morph. They had to combine with the Texas schools because of their bad demographics and then they lost three of their eight original members to other conferences (Colorado to the Pac 10, Texas A&M to the SEC, and Nebraska to the Big 10). Being small and cohesive is not

        • frug says:

          The truth is that commonality breaks down as you expand more and more.

          The SWC schools all had plenty in common, and that still failed.

          Yes, over expansion can create problems but so can trying to maintain the status quo (like the Big East not adding PSU).

          • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

            Someone should take the time to run the numbers on every major NCAA athletic conference to see how many of them have failed what their membership was when/if they did. Otherwise this is just cherry picking data and is mostly meaningless.

          • Biological Imperiative says:

            No, the SWC schools had little in common, except location. That and SMU death penalty, terrible TV contracts, no ability to keep recruits and Arkansas defection to the SEC, killed it.

          • bullet says:

            Rice had the smallest undergrad student body in I-A. Texas the largest.
            Texas and A&M were flagships, Houston a commuter school and Tech a school way out in west Texas.
            Rice was quirky, SMU preppy and Baylor didn’t dance.
            TCU paid its running back and repented. A&M tried to buy a running back with a car but Eric went to SMU, keeping the car. SMU paid everyone and didn’t repent.
            4 schools were in pro sports markets. They got left behind. 4 weren’t. They went to the Big 12.

            Texas and A&M were committed to women’s athletics. Baylor didn’t really believe in it at the time. The others didn’t have the money.

            There was very little in common other than being Texas schools.

            Ultimately, the Cowboys and Oilers killed it. But all the cheating and the 1984 court decision against the NCAA accelerated the end.

          • frug says:

            No, the SWC schools had little in common, except location.

            How about 80 years of history for starters?

          • zeek says:

            80 years of history doesn’t mean much when circumstances like demographics and TV deregulation change the game.

          • Biological Imperiative says:

            I can’t believe I’m saying this: Bullet is right.

            If history had any relavance we would still sing God save the king

          • frug says:

            I can’t believe I’m saying this: Bullet is right.

            If history had any relavance we would still sing God save the king

            Except Bullet is the one who keeps arguing that history repeats itself…

      • metatron says:

        So the original Big Ten schools would comprise half of a twenty member league. Midwestern schools would be 11/20.

        You understand that we’re giving up control of this conference?

        • jj says:

          That is a hugely important point that gets glossed over a lot.

          • jj says:

            I think right now we’re fine. But over time the PJM block might start voting all together. Bringing in a pile of acc teams could be a problem. The core B10 needs to hold control.

          • ccrider55 says:

            And why I believe 16 or 18 is the stoping point. And for those still thinking ND is still the B1G’s white whale, I offer that Delaney has finished the book and informed the COP/C how it came out.

          • metatron says:

            With the ship broken and almost all dead?

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          Who exactly is the “we” here? Unless you’re a university president (in which case you probably wouldn’t be on a fan message board), you never had control in the first place?

          • metatron says:

            We are the engine of this vehicle: the fans and voters who ultimately control what happens to this league.

            As both a fan and a taxpayer, I have more of a stake in this enterprise than the officers charged with running it.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            The original 13 colonies lost control after 37 more states were added. I think they’ve gotten over it.

          • metatron says:

            No, not really. The factionalism present in Colonial America festered until the American Civil War and still lingers if the electoral maps and trends are any indication.

          • jj says:

            I’m more aligned with metatron here. We is the vested parties whose flagship institutions these are. We is not fans in general.

            A related upside to the expansion, and another likely reason not to double up states, is we just gained 6 senators. This too poses the same risk of losing control of the conference, but now that risk is pretty nonexistent.

          • zeek says:

            Marc has a good point.

            You have to be willing to give up a measure of control in order to get the demographic gains from the Southeast.

            That means 4-6 of those teams coming in, and Northern teams comprising only 66-75% of the conference from the current 100%.

            It’s obviously a tradeoff as the UNC/Duke/Georgia Tech/UVa (along with possibly Maryland) bloc may end up trying to push issues as a group, but that’s a tradeoff that the Big Ten COP/C seem willing to make.

          • jj says:

            Zeek:

            Sure he does. It’s like any other nation or company building effort. I’m just saying there is a real risk of loss of cultural control. It’s small, but it is real. The targets bring far in excess at this point, but there is a tipping point out there somewhere.

          • Richard says:

            “The factionalism present in Colonial America festered until the American Civil War and still lingers if the electoral maps and trends are any indication.”

            The factionalism wasn’t between the old colonies and new states. In fact, the new states tended to follow the old colonies.

          • metatron says:

            The crucial difference Richard, is that we’re not sending colonists to found new schools. We are aligning with powers of equal footing.

            This is more akin to the dysfunctional European Union than our republic.

          • Richard says:

            In the EU, the strong economies aren’t willing to subsidize and be tied more strongly to the weak economies while the weak countries didn’t get their budget in to shape (some lied about it).

            How is that relevent to the B10? The conference is already extremely tied together (with a lot of subsidizing). Unless you add a non-team-player like Texas that isn’t willing to share the wealth, I fail to see what factionalism would arise.

    • frug says:

      That entire article is extremely poorly reasoned, but point #2 (that the bottom schools will get jealous of the top schools and leave) is particularly inept. When was the last time anyone left a conference because someone else made more money?

      The fact is, all four schools that left the Big XII were “haves”, all the Big East schools that bolted were “haves” and the first three MWC schools to bolt (Utah, TCU and BYU) were all “haves”. I can’t honestly believe that he is suggesting that ISU would ever threaten to leave the Big XII. The fact is, you are way way better off being the poorest school in a major conference than the richest in a non-major.

      • bullet says:

        Actually, the threat is the “haves” getting tired of sharing with the “have-nots” and leaving during a time of opportunity or during a time of financial stress.

        • ccrider55 says:

          The threat is the haves worrying about becoming have nots compared to those in other conferences… all of whom share more equally once the SECN gets started. Talk of resenting sharing with conference mates is either a red herring, or a symptom that the B12 bears closer watch as the time remaining on the GOR dwindles.

          ISU had no ability to threaten (eminently replaceable) but would have bolted in a heart beat if a B1G invite had been extended.

        • BruceMcF says:

          Yes, if ISU issued an ultimatum, “do this or we WALK!”, the Big 12 would seem likely to respond by starting a replacement committee. Indeed, for ISU, they could well vote to free ISU’s media rights if they agree to wait until the replacement is free to join the Big 12.

      • 12-Team Playoffs Now says:

        “That entire article is extremely poorly reasoned”

        —–

        Well, Mr. SEC is often an idiot. Albeit a somewhat connected idiot who is good at aggregating SEC articles, but when he extrapolates, predicts, and analyzes he often proves to be an idiot.

    • Brian says:

      BuckeyeBeau,

      I tend to agree with him, but not for any of his reasons.

      1. Lack of solidarity

      This is a problem for lesser conferences and in past times, but things have changed. The B10 isn’t changing what they look for in a member. The lines of geographical regions are blurring. The differences between the midwest and atlantic regions aren’t what they were 50 years ago. The same is true for the SEC and the P12. The teams that moved are happy with where they are and their conferences are happy to have them. It’s not a weird merger like the B12 or the WAC.

      2. Class warfare

      There will always be tiers, but being at the bottom of a power conference is an order of magnitude better than being at the top of a non-AQ league. The bottom tier aren’t crying over the lot in life. Besides, larger conferences also mean more company at the bottom. They’ll still have a similar distribution as now, just with more schools in total.

      3. Outside influences

      He mostly talks about the media here. While technology changes, the corporations in charge change less often. Businesses tend to consolidate, though, and that’s what we’re seeing now. As money has become more important, conference are following the same rules. Conferences are less likely to spinoff their top level because the other schools add value in other ways (academically, teams to beat, other sports, etc).

      4. History

      His examples mostly stem from the years when teams rode trains to road games and there was no TV. Of course having 30+ teams was stupid back then. That doesn’t say anything useful about the idea of 16-20 teams in a world of airplanes, national TV coverage of games, the internet and the constant moving that is mixing the various cultures.

      My reason would be the future. At some point the conferences may well merge athletically to be a bigger version of the NFL/NBA/MLB. The tighter coordination will improve the money but end the concept of conferences. They’ll morph into subsets of 1 giant league used just for scheduling, and by that stage they’ll revert to their former, smaller size.

      • BuckeyeBeau says:

        @Brian:

        You said: “They’ll morph into subsets of 1 giant league used just for scheduling, and by that stage they’ll revert to their former, smaller size.”

        100% agreed with this idea. Not necessarily predicting it, but that is a plausible scenario looking into the misty future. My lighthearted suggestion of a 42-team B1G was aimed at this kind of idea. A new Div. 1 of CFB where the whole division owns its own TV network. In that world, the 42-team B1G peacably (sp?) splinters into 10-12 team groupings for scheduling with 1-3 playoff “rounds.”

        And really, think about it. The B1G writ large where the ADs get together and decide divisions, and scheduling and number of games, etc. The B1G seems to work very easily; imagine if all of the upper tier of CFB was under one organizational umbrella?

        By the way, to throw some chum into the water (grin): A 42-team B1G is one scenario where the SEC might be vulnerable to poaching. FL, A&M and Vandy would surely feel the lure of the AAU super conference. So, let’s say a 45-team B1G.

        As for the general idea of whether a 20-team B1G can stay together: I agree with commentators above and to the MrSEC article re: the CIC and the AAU status of the member schools. That is the thing that makes the schools the “same” which helps with cohesion and that sense of “family” (or whatever you want to call it). Put it another way: everyone is talking in terms of regional geographic “culture” and speaking in terms of the people living in and around the campuses. But the CIC and AAU status = a type of “academic culture.” That can be powerful. Campuses are their own little worlds within the cities and communities where they physically exist. I lived in Chicago and I can tell you that Hyde Park (UofC) is a very different place compared to the rest of Chicago. So “academic culture” (along with shared sports experiences) might be sufficient to glue together a 20-team B1G.

  48. Mike says:

    A lot of people seem to be getting the NCSU board of directors wrong. Here’s some help with that.

    The NC St Board of Directors

    North Carolina State University is a constituent institution of the University of North Carolina (UNC) system. According to The UNC Code, NC State shall have a board of trustees composed of thirteen persons: eight are elected by the UNC Board of Governors, four are appointed by the governor, and the remaining member is the president of the student government, ex officio.

    http://www.ncsu.edu/about-nc-state/university-leadership/board-of-trustees/

    • Mike says:

      Board of Governors for the University of North Carolina


      The UNC Board of Governors is the policy-making body legally charged with “the general determination, control, supervision, management, and governance of all affairs of the constituent institutions.” It elects the president, who administers the University. The 32 voting members of the Board of Governors are elected by the General Assembly for four-year terms. Special members are non-voting members with varying terms. Such members are former chairs of the board, former governors,and the president of the UNC Association of Student Governments, or that student’s designee.

      http://www.northcarolina.edu/bog/index.htm

      • Bob in the Triangle says:

        Mike, there are 2 Boards, for for the UNC System and one for each campus. The UNC-CH campus board makes decisions important to Carolina. I suspect Delaney sent an invite to the UNC-CH board. It will be a political decision where the AD, legislature, key alums, and all boards will have some influence. But the decision to leave the ACC and join the B1G will belong to the UNC-Chapel Hill board.

        • Mike says:

          @Bob – The more people that know, the more likely it will be leaked. If there was any contact from the Big Ten, I would be very surprised that anyone other than the president and (at most) one or two members of the BOG are aware of it. This is exactly how Maryland made their move. No one wants a repeat of how the Big 12 was formed.

          • Bob in the Triangle says:

            Fair point Mike. The Maryland process will not likely work at UNC. The MD President made the recommendation to his board. There are no in-state rivals to consider. Few care about MD athletics. The dire finances at MD athletics required an immediate solution. Delaney wisely stepped in. Swofford and the ACC sat on the sidelines.

            For UNC to leave in the next 2 years there will need to be several conditions: a dynamic Chancellor, probably with a B1G academic background. a unified UNC-CH Board. a financial model for B1G membership that cannot be matched by the ACC. resolution of the current athletic-academic scandal.

            I don’t think there is any rush to move. UNC will not go to the SEC. The football-first mentality, the lower academic standards, the oversigning, the coaching pay scales are all reasons why UNC is not an SEC fit.

    • BruceMcF says:

      Nothing there contradicts the claim being made, that both schools operate under the same Board of Governors, since the NC State Board of Trustees are 2/3 appointed by the UNC Board of Governors. Indeed, it underlines why the UNC Board of Governors have to take the interests of both into account: assuming that the governor appointees are made to pander to influential NC State alumni, those four Trustees would be able to campaign against a move by the UNC Board of Governors to screw NC State.

  49. GreatLakeState says:

    Over at the ‘College Crosse’ site conspiracy minded folks are having a field day with the sudden creation of an official B1G lacrosse site (skeletal as it may be). One commenter even claims that MD accepting was contingent on an JHU invite. Here’s the meat of the very short post:

    Is the Big Ten getting serious about pursuing a men’s lacrosse conference with, presumably, Johns Hopkins as an associate member for lacrosse purposes? If a skeleton website with a picture of a female soccer player, a bunch of circular and placeholder links, and an existence that requires some link-cracking (or a simple Google search) to find means “Yes, definitely,” then Johns-Hopkins-to-the-Big-Ten conspiracy theorists have a little more fuel today than they did recently.

    • GreatLakeState says:

      field day….get it?

      • BuckeyeBeau says:

        This comment to the Lax article made me laugh:

        “You know where I’m coming from on the Hopkins thing…

        but it really sounds like there’s some legitimacy to some of the various UNC/UVa/Georgia Tech (not a lacrosse program) smoke out there as well.

        It would certainly fit in well with Jim Delany’s “Fuck You Notre Dame” platform for conference expansion.

        by sullivti on Feb 20, 2013 10:31 AM EST reply “

    • jj says:

      That is as close to a smoking gun as you will likely find. What would JH’s voting power be? It can’t be 100% outside the CIC.

      • zeek says:

        I’d imagine they only get a vote on lacrosse matters but as far as the money and BTN goes, no clue.

        • bullet says:

          Pac 12 has Boise for wrestling as well as other associates. Don’t know why an associate lacrosse member is such a big deal.

          • BruceMcF says:

            Because the Big Ten has never done it. Forming a Big Ten championship has always been a matter of 6 or more Big Ten schools sponsoring the sport, and then a championship is formed of Big Ten schools and Big Ten schools alone. Indeed, when the rule was first written, “6″ meant “when a majority of Big Ten schools sponsor the sport”.

            A conference that has had associate members before can form a championship with associate members by following the rules already laid down. The Big Ten has a blank sheet of paper, which isn’t always an advantage.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Many different conferences teams, in sports not sponsored by their own conference, participate in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation. Would that be associate membership?

          • Brian says:

            bullet,

            For the same reason the Rose Bowl is a big deal – the B10 is just different from everyone else in some unusual ways.

          • Ted says:

            So you guys against adding JHU for lax only, here’s a hypothetical: would be against Chicago starting a soccer (or field hockey or swimming or whatever) and competing in the Big Ten?

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            So you guys against adding JHU for lax only, here’s a hypothetical: would be against Chicago starting a soccer (or field hockey or swimming or whatever) and competing in the Big Ten?

            I’m in favor of JHU, not opposed, but I think it’s a poor comparison. JHU is a king in a sport the B1G lacks, but wants to add. They’re also an academic and research king: adding them to the CIC would be like adding Harvard. In contrast, any sport Chicago would add at the Division I level would probably be terrible for many years to come. They’re already in the CIC, and you can’t add them twice.

          • Mike says:

            So you guys against adding JHU for lax only, here’s a hypothetical: would be against Chicago starting a soccer (or field hockey or swimming or whatever) and competing in the Big Ten?

            @Ted – As bullet pointed out a post or two ago, current NCAA rules prohibit them from doing that.

          • BruceMcF says:

            @Ted ~ there are eight schools that were grandfathered in on ability to operate one men and one women D1 sport with scholarships, back when Division Three did their big rules upgrade in 2004 ~ Johns Hopkins is one of them.

            Four were hockey schools, two were soccer schools, JHU in Lacrosse and I forget the fourth men’s sport, maybe men’s volleyball? One of the hockey schools does women’s water polo rather than women’s hockey as their Title IX partner. One of the two soccer schools has since dropped down anyway.

            The only other one among the eight that is remotely similar would be RPI in hockey (AFAIR not presently AAU), but the Big Ten no longer needs an extra team to form a men’s hockey championship, and needs two to form a women’s hockey championship, so its not really the same situation.

      • ccrider55 says:

        JHU fields around 22 teams…including wrestling!

        • BruceMcF says:

          And twenty of those are non-scholarship Division 3 sports. The difference between that and a club sport would seem to be the school paying for Div3 travel as opposed to making a grant in aid of club sport travel, and the coach employed by the athletic department rather than the student recreation department.

          • ccrider55 says:

            NCAA doesn’t sponsor, support, administer, regulate, or hold championships in club sports. It’s amusing as a D1 fan to belittle lower divisions, but it isn’t constructive or informative.

            I still wonder if JHU might not be considering raising a number of other sports to D1 and actually dropping the rest truly to club status. This would satisfy the all in requirement (although I feel lacrosse as their only D1 already satisfies that) as well as the more problematic minimum number of sports required.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            I still wonder if JHU might not be considering raising a number of other sports to D1 and actually dropping the rest truly to club status. This would satisfy the all in requirement (although I feel lacrosse as their only D1 already satisfies that) as well as the more problematic minimum number of sports required.

            The jump from D3 to D1 is a substantial expense, and most of their teams would get crushed for many years to come. They don’t have the facilities for it, either. I think their basketball gym seats something like 1,100-1,200. I don’t see any way they do this, just for a non-revenue sport like Lacrosse.

          • BruceMcF says:

            @ccrider: Between formulating and approving new Big Ten bylaws to establish how associate membership works, and taking a Division Three athletic department to Division One status, the former seems a lot less trouble than the latter.

            If there are schools that are concerned about the precedent, writing the bylaws so its only for the special case of a school with split division sports could be done to lay “slippery slope” concerns to rest. If it had just been institutional inertia, then the appeal of getting JHU in as a secure guest member of the CIC seems like it should be sufficient to overcome the inertia.

            In any case, Johns Hopkins is not going to be making any decision in the middle of the Lacrosse season, so this is something that will be worked out one way or the other in summer. And for all we know its just a fallback plan anyway, in case UVA, UNC and/or Duke do not end up being invited to the Big Ten.

            As far as “NCAA doesn’t sponsor, support, administer, regulate, or hold championships in club sports. It’s amusing as a D1 fan to belittle lower divisions, but it isn’t constructive or informative.”

            If there is some fundamental, basic difference between non scholarship “varsity” and non scholarship “club” sports, it surely isn’t which group of sports bureaucrats organizes their championship. So as amusing as it may have been for you to belittle club sports because they are not “sponsored. supported, administered, or regulated by the NCAA, nor participate in NCAA championships”, it isn’t constructive or informative.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Your description of the difference applies to club FB and BB too. What group rules and administers a sport is what distinguishes them. Bringing a club sport to D1 status is just a rolling start. D3 is in the game, just with different rules and regulations for the various levels.

            The true difference is what people can be charged to watch D1, hence the label revenue producers, and what gets reinvested to perpetuate the money cycle.

          • BruceMcF says:

            The core difference between Division 1 and Division 3 is that being non-scholarship, Division 3 actually is about intercollegiate competition between student-athletes. Which is what inter-mural club sports are about as well. Neither are rife with the rank hypocrisy that runs through the Division 1 revenue sports.

      • BruceMcF says:

        Since the Big Ten has never had an associate member, those bylaws would have to be written. One would presume that they could start out with some formulation copied from other conferences with associate members, and pass it by some committee of Big Ten members and JHU to see if there are any issues that need to be sorted out.

        As far as money, they either need to carve out JHU’s home game television contract with ESPNU or make those revenues right, and on top of that add some small pro-rata share of Big Ten Network revenues. If you did a pro-forma allocation of 60% of BTN to football, 30% to Basketball and 10% to the non-revenue sports, you could give JHU an equal non-revenue sport share without much dilution of BTN revenues.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          Since the Big Ten has never had an associate member, those bylaws would have to be written.

          I’m pretty sure the Big Ten’s bylaws aren’t in the public record, so we don’t actually know whether the addition of JHU would require any sort of rewrite.

          • BruceMcF says:

            Even if the person in charge of considering LAX expansion for the Big Ten hadn’t mentioned it, it would be quite unusual for a conference that has never had and has never before contemplated having an associate member to have invested the time in writing up the rules for associate membership.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            @Bruce McF: You referred to a bylaw, and we have no basis for saying that. Bylaws tend to be solemn things, which are changeable, but are not easily or frequently. That doesn’t mean they can’t be changed, however. Look at how often the U. S. Constitution has changed, and it’s harder to amend than most organizations’ bylaws.

            Yes, obviously if JHU joined, a new procedure would need to be devised, as the issue of sharing revenue with an associate member never arose before. Plenty of things never arose before. That fact alone can’t be the sole reason for not doing them, or nothing would ever change.

      • frug says:

        Not sure how this a smoking gun vis-a-vis Hopkins. All it demonstrates is that they getting the infrastructure in place to potentially sponsor lacrosse.

        • jj says:

          Not necessarily JH, but they’re not going to the trouble of doing that for nothing. And they’re not likely planting that for some reason related to expansion issues. I think it’s real and it means lacrosse is on deck for delivery in one form or another. Outside chance it’s just a club page, but I doubt it.

          • Brian says:

            I agree with frug’s point. Many/most of the B10′s top targets (UVA, UNC, Duke) play D-I lacrosse. There’s no real reason to think this is about JHU.

          • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

            That being said it is still significant as it means the B1G is planning on officially sponsoring LAX. As none of the current schools has plans to start a new LAX team that means that they are most likely looking at a new conference member.

          • BruceMcF says:

            Except they already have six women’s teams, and are likely in conference expansion talks with one or more schools with men’s LAX teams, so it could be the people assigned to work up the women’s LAX framework doing the men’s framework at the same time as a contingency. If neither the women’s nor the men’s LAX had six teams coming on board, it would be a more definite sign.

      • BuckeyeBeau says:

        as for “smoking gun,” this comment:

        “This isn’t the smoking gun I thought it was at first.

        I plugged the URL for the men’s lacrosse page into the Wayback Machine, and it’s been around since at least March 27th of 2012. (link) It looks the same for the women’s lacrosse page. It doesn’t look like there’s been any change in the year or so since; maybe other sports have their own page as well?

        Also, we in the Big Ten don’t just want Johns Hopkins just for lacrosse or to make us smarterer: they’re going to supply the doctors for our Frankenstein’s monsters that will soon overrun the Northeast (don’t tell anyone, though).

        Be the change you wish to see in the world.

        by Nicholas Jervey on Feb 21, 2013 9:55 AM EST reply ”

        Sigh … having no idea what/where the “Wayback Machine” is, I am constantly reminded that the internet makes me feel stupid.

      • SpaceTetra says:

        How is the money distributed for B1G Hockey? I can’t believe LAX would be much different?
        The hockey schools have got to be getting more than the rest.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          How is the money distributed for B1G Hockey? I can’t believe LAX would be much different?
          The hockey schools have got to be getting more than the rest.

          Most of the revenue comes from football and basketball, and currently every school plays both. It’s a very different story if a school joins ONLY for lacrosse. You’re obviously not going to give them a full share, but what DO you give them? Bear in mind, JHU has a TV contract with ESPNU, so they’re bringing something to the table, as well.

        • BruceMcF says:

          The way that the money is distributed for Big Ten Hockey is: “We, the BTN, will broadcast 30 of your games live. That will increase your exposure and if more people show up to buy tickets to your games, you get to pocket the extra ticket revenue”.

          Everyone plays football and basketball, which attracts the cable carriage which brings in the money, everyone contributes non-revenue olympic sports which help on a secondary level, reducing churn rates in areas where the BTN is in a subscription premium sports package and subscription rates to Big Ten Direct online streaming of the live content that doesn’t get picked up by the BTN cable network.

          And everyone gets an equal share of the rights and the Big Ten’s share of the profits.

          To allocate the revenues for an associate member in a non-revenue sport, you need to arrive at some notional share of the Big Ten Network rights to allocate to the non-revenue sports, and then give the associate member their equal share of that. My suggestion was to make a pro forma allocation of 60% football, 30% basketball and 10% non-revenue sports, and then an associate member of a non-revenue sport would get an equal share of 10% of the Big Ten payout ~ at present in the range of $700,000. That sets a nice high bar to recruiting associate members, which I would like since I don’t want the Big Ten to turn into one of those conferences that recruits associate members willy-nilly.

          What I can’t find is the value of the Johns Hopkins deal with ESPNU. The cleanest arrangement is if the Big Ten LAX Conference can get an upgraded deal from ESPNU, to carry all the JHU home games and additional Big Ten home games, and include the value of that in the pro-forma non-revenue sports share, but I don’t know whether the end result would be more money than JHU presently receives.

      • BruceMcF says:

        Though its not certain that Johns Hopkins is the target of the gun. If, hypothetically, UVA was ready to move as soon as the Big Ten sorts out a suitable partner for the move, then that would also be 6 LAX Men’s teams and so the normal way things go would be a Big Ten Men’s LAX championship.

        And it could just be a contingency: they’ll almost certainly be starting a women’s LAX championship, and since the framework is similar, they may as well lay down the framework for both, just in case a men’s championship is sorted out.

  50. loki_the_bubba says:

    Slightly off-topic. Stanford has become the first school to raise $1,000.000.000 in one year.

    http://news.yahoo.com/stanford-university-1st-college-raise-1b-051248286–finance.html

  51. Andy says:

    So most of you are still talking about the B1G expanding past 16 schools, eh?

    And many are talking about it as if it’s a damn near certainty at this point.

    Why?

    So I’ve seen lots of rumors and talk about Virginia and Georgia Tech making the move. So I’ll grant that there might be something going on with that. Maybe.

    But who gets you past 16?

    There hasn’t been even a peep out of UNC or Duke. Nothing. Not even a crazy rumor from one of the performance artists like “The Dude”. Just a lot of hoping and wishing and praying and thinking and planning and dreaming. But nothing real. UNC fans don’t want to join the B1G. They want ACC or SEC. UNC shares a board of governors with NCSU. They’d need a home. The SEC isn’t going to take NCSU without UNC. They would likely take both. In fact, they’d likely take the whole research triangle if they could get them. Duke hasn’t said a word. The argument used to be on here that the B1G probably wouldn’t be interested in Duke. Now Duke to the B1G is being talked about as a foregone conclusion. Well somebody had better tell Duke about this because I haven’t heard a peep out of them.

    So let’s say UNC and Duke are not interested in joining the B1G. Who can you add to get past 16? Notre Dame’s an obvious one, but they don’t seem very likely now, do they? Texas was the hot topic on here for months, but that looks like a no go. Frank’s all hot and heavy for Florida State now, but their academics rank below Mizzou, and many of you thought you were too good for Mizzou, so I’m not sure how you think FSU’s going to fly. Maybe you could take VPI with UVA? Really lock down the Virginia market. That would seem like a reasonable move. Of all non-AAU schools, VPI is closer than the vast majority. They probably wouldn’t get membership for at least another 10-20 years, but at least they’re somewhat close. Pitt, Syracuse, Boston College, and UConn seem to have completely fallen out of favor on here, even though they were all talked about as serious options a couple of years ago (probably Pitt was the least serious, but only b/c of the geographic redundancy with PSU).

    To sum up, I still believe the B1G will either stop at 14 or expand to 16. I see zero evidence to support an expansion past 16. Yes two or three B1G presidents mentioned it in conversation as a possibility, but that’s hardly proof of anything.

    Moving past 16 would be very controversial. It would be a huge departure from the past, would greatly dilute the traditions of the original Big Ten, and there would almost certainly be diminishing returns with each addition to the league. Going to 16 is an easy move. It makes sense. Find a couple good schools and everybody sings on. Past that it can become a mess.

    And then there’s the trouble of finding 4 or 6 schools that fit and would earn enough.

    Until I see some kind of sign that UNC is willing to abandon the ACC for the B1G (and not the SEC) then I don’t think it’s all that likely that the B1G will go past 16.

    The Big 12 obviously can’t attract away FSU so there’s no imminent destabilization. The SEC isn’t going to take NCSU or anyone else unless it becomes clear that they can’t get UNC. The ACC can replace UVA and GT if needed with UConn and Cinci. UNC can still have it’s basketball league.

    UConn, Cinci, Syracuse, Pitt, Louisville, Wake Forest, UNC, Duke, NCSU, Miami, FSU, Clemson, Boston College, Virginia Tech…

    UNC and Duke could live with that league. Lots of good basketball there. They could just stay put. The SEC’s not going to do the B1G any favors and shake UNC loose for you. That’s a heavy lift you’re going to have to make on your own. And frankly I don’t think you’re strong enough to make it.

    • Kevin says:

      @Andy… You have seen first hand what happens when a girl literally throws itself at a conference. It leaves its fans rationalizing how they would have been 14. Last I decked, Rutgers was available as 13 2 years ago. Missouri was not wanted as 12, 13, or 14 or else it would have been in the B1G. Be happy the SEC was the landing spot… It is a good place to land from a football and $ standpoint.

      As for the Carolina schools… If the do leave, it will be in MD type secrecy instead of MO putting themselves on the market.

      I hope there is no movement, as talking about potential movement is very good entertainment.

      • Andy says:

        Kevin, good to see you admit the obvious, which is that none of this is real and it’s all for entertainment purposes.

        Your smack talk right there was for entertainment purposes only as well and has no basis in fact. Obviously the B1G didn’t like the Missouri + Rutgers combo. Missouri + someone else might have been a different story. If what I’ve heard from people who should know is accurate, then Missouri was to join the B1G if it came with the right partner(s) but those partner(s) did not pan out and no other suitable partner(s) were found before Missouri joined the SEC.

        If a school has to be so secretive then why are UVA and GT all over the rumor mill? Are they lifting their skirts and throwing themselves? Did Texas A&M lift their skirts and throw themselves? How about Colorado? Utah? West Virginia? TCU? I don’t think Mizzou has a monopoly on people talking before the move is made. If anything Maryland, Syracuse, and Pitt were the rare exceptions to the rule.

        • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

          You are making some false analogies here. As we are talking specifically about teams who either have joined or are rumored to be close joining the B1G the actions of schools who have transitioned between other conferences is completely irrelevant.

          Nebraska, Rutgers & Maryland are the three schools have that have joined the B1G over the past several years. None of those schools gave any indication they were going to move until either the papers were signed or at least a fait accompli. Maryland is not the exception among it’s relevant peers, it’s the norm.

          Now the reason there is lots of speculation surrounding certain schools right now (UVA, UNC, GT etc) is because those are the schools that on paper appear to be the best fit for what people think the B1G is trying to accomplish. There was also public speculation around Rutgers, Maryland, Nebraska as well as schools like Missouri, Kansas & such.

          The fact that there have been no public statements or leaks from UVA, GT or UNC is essentially meaningless as the other additions followed the same pattern. Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.

          Now why are people here seriously talking about a >16 team B1G? Because high profile individuals within the B1G are also openly discussing the possibility. That isn’t a coincidence. Now granted E. Gordon Gee probably doesn’t have as much insight as to the inner workings of the B1G as your mythical insider but we must make do with what we have.

          All that being said I don’t think it’s a coincidence that the program that most closely parallels how Missouri has handled re-alignment is WVU.

          • Andy says:

            Rutgers leaked to the media interest in the B1G multiple times. So did Nebraska. Maryland is the only one that didn’t. Gov. Rick Perry talked to the media about A&M to the SEC long before it actually happened. CU talked about the Pac 12 a ton before their move. So did Utah. Louisville threw themselves at the Big 12 to no avail. Virginia Tech threw themselves at the ACC. And on and on. There is almost always talk of a move before the move. Georgia Tech’s president recently made stronger indications about interest in the B1G than anyone who worked for Missouri ever did. The only person associated with Mizzou to ever talk about the Big Ten was Governor Jay Nixon, and he did so off-the-cuff in response to a reporter’s question. He never said another word about it, nor did anyone else associated with Mizzou. Yet that one brief off-the-cuff answer has reached near legendary proportions to the point where some of you idiots are acting like not only did Mizzou “lift their skirts” and “throw themselves” at the SEC, but we were the only ones to ever do so in the history of realignment. That is hilariously wrong.

            And now you’ve got a handful of people saying 18 or 20 is “possible”. Well whoopty-do. Color me unimpressed. As I said, a whole lot has to happen before you’re ever going to get to 18 or 20, and most of it is highly unlikely. People can talk about whatever they want. It doesn’t mean a thing.

          • Andy says:

            should read people saying Mizzou “throw themselves” at the B1G

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            @Andy: Maryland to the B1G wasn’t the only surprise. So were Syracuse and Pitt to the ACC. Notre Dame’s switch was kept under wraps too. I’m not an advocate of an 18-20 team B1G, but if the best evidence you’ve got is that the targeted schools aren’t talking openly, that’s pretty weak.

            You’re cherry-picking quite a bit, too. As I recall, the Mizzou president claimed absolute fidelity to the Big XII and was even the chair of its council of presidents until a very late stage of its negotiations to flip.

          • Andy says:

            Marc, your recall is very bad, apparently. Mizzou’s President’s commitment to the Big 12 was worded so weakly that it was a running joke.

            If me citing a lack of evidence as evidence is weak evidence then you having a lack of evidence is weak evidence as well.

    • Ginger King says:

      @andy

      I’m assuming you are an SEC guy, I lived in Greensboro and taught for several years and became very acquainted with a large number of Duke & UNC graduates, If I am convinced of anything it’s that neither of those two schools ever end up in the SEC. I agree with Frank that the ACC is much stronger than most people think however, if the ACC is truly unstable, then UNC, Duke, GTech, & UVA will only go to the BIG.

      1.Academics
      2.Academics
      3.Academics
      4.Academics

      ” There hasn’t been even a peep out of UNC or Duke. Nothing. Not even a crazy rumor from one of the performance artists like “The Dude”.

      There wasn’t a peep out of Maryland until it was a done deal, the PTB at those schools signed confidentiality agreements with the BIG. If there is smoke there is a fire, and there is clearly smoke. Not hearing anything out of those schools is a red flag that maybe something has been signed, because talks are going on.

      “The SEC’s not going to do the B1G any favors and shake UNC loose for you. That’s a heavy lift you’re going to have to make on your own. And frankly I don’t think you’re strong enough to make it.”

      The BIG didn’t need any help to shake Maryland lose, didn’t need any help shaking Nebraska lose, and if, and I know it’s a big IF, UNC comes lose, or see’s the writing on the wall they are in the BIG yesterday. Large flagship university, great research, world class olympic sports, UVA, UNC, & Gtech are the same, Duke is NW with a top notch basketball team and a rabid east coast following.

      Mr. SEC writes about this and agrees that the BIG has 2 major chips in it’s corner that the SEC can’t compete with: BIG network & the CIC

      http://www.mrsec.com/2013/02/which-conference-will-win-the-realignment-war-it-depends-on-your-definition-of-win/

      I still think it’s unlikely, but not as far fetched as you do. maybe this is the flavor of the week, Lord knows those flavors change more in conference realignment than in a middle school full of 11 year olds. However, the BIG seems to get what it wants, and i think TPTB at the ACC schools that matter would rather be apart of the preeminent sports & research conference, rather than a watered down ACC version of the Big XII

      • Andy says:

        Certainly an academic like yourself would hear that academics are important above all else. No surprise there. But again all I see in your post is what I see in all the others. Pure speculation based on basically nothing but your own imagination.

        • BruceMcF says:

          “I’m assuming you are an SEC guy, I lived in Greensboro and taught for several years and became very acquainted with a large number of Duke & UNC graduates”

          Quite evidently does not qualify as “pure speculation based on basically nothing but your own imagination”, unless your claim is that Ginger King imagined living in Greesnboro and becoming acquainted with a large number of Duke and UNC graduates.

          • Andy says:

            and his buddies in Greensboro know what about the Big Ten expanding past 16 exactly? Oh yeah, nothing.

          • BruceMcF says:

            “and his buddies in Greensboro know what about the Big Ten expanding past 16 exactly?”

            What they would know about the Big Ten expanding beyond 14 would be exactly as indicated in the comment. The comment did not make any claim to be privy to the Big Ten’s plans. It referred to the inclination of people at UNC and Duke. It gave his view of that inclination and how he came by that view.

            “Oh, yeah, nothing.”

            As if a one-eyed Missouri homer is the best qualified impartial judge of who has what sense of what the sentiments are within UNC and Duke regarding the SEC.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          @Andy: … all I see in your post is what I see in all the others. Pure speculation based on basically nothing but your own imagination.

          Now you’re just being silly. Plenty of Big Ten sources (presidents, ADs, coaches) have said that don’t think they aren’t done expanding. You can debate how likely it is, or whether it’s a good idea. You can’t just call it “imagination.”

          • Andy says:

            Nobody has said “we will go over 16″. All they’ve done is said “well maybe we could do that, or not”. That is not news.

    • Brian says:

      Andy,

      “So most of you are still talking about the B1G expanding past 16 schools, eh?

      And many are talking about it as if it’s a damn near certainty at this point.

      Why?”

      1. To drive you away.
      2. What else is there to talk about?

      • Andy says:

        Yep, all I see here are a bunch of bored B1G fans in a circle jerk.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          @Andy: Yep, all I see here are a bunch of bored B1G fans in a circle jerk.

          If so, why do you post here?

        • BuckeyeBeau says:

          LOL. Crudely put, but I suspect that some of us are bored at work. We give a read between projects/calls and throw an idea or two onto the board. Then back to work.

          I suspect that 75%+ of the Board agrees with you that going past 16 is unlikely. Many have said as much and then, in the same post, they go on to say: “but if the B1G did ….”

          Throwing the cold water of reality on the Board’s topic if the week/month/quarter will do no good.

          Until something concrete actually happens, the Board will have fun discussing the possibilities. Plus, whether legit or not, there is a constant rumor stream about UNC, GT and UVa. The internet (this Board included) is a massive echo chamber.

          As said, the echoing will stop when something happens. The B1G divisions is a good example. Months of people proposing variations and offering guesses as to what the B1G would decide. That has all died off now that 12 of 14 are “decided” (at least based on media reports).

        • Chuck says:

          And you clearly approve of and are an enthusiastic supporter of circle jerks judging by your wholehearted participation in it. Congrats! :-)

    • cutter says:

      Conference realignment: Can ACC take schools for their word?
      By Jeremy Fowler | College Football Insider

      In early December, ACC presidents issued a statement of solidarity to address speculation about conference realignment.

      Nearly a month later, about six weeks ago, the topic came up between the ACC and North Carolina, which said it hadn’t had any contact with other conferences, according to a source.

      Without babysitting, the ACC is keeping tabs on its membership since the Big Ten lured the cash-strapped Maryland Terrapins in November.

      But if an ACC school is going to leave eventually — and the speculation persists with schools such as UNC, Georgia Tech and Virginia — the ACC might be the last to know. That’s how realignment works.

      “At some point, you have to take people for their word,” said the league source.

      It comes down to this: The ACC has enough to offer that it would take a major greed play for a school to leave for another conference.

      This begs the question: Isn’t greed the catalyst of conference realignment? At least in part, yes. I think administrators want peace of mind as expenses balloon, and a bigger vault helps ease a president’s anguish over that next $100 million stadium renovation project.

      Whether Maryland is an ACC anomaly or an appetizer to more realignment feasting isn’t so clear-cut. Nothing should surprise anymore. But what’s clear is no conference outside of maybe the SEC has a chance to maximize television value the way the Big Ten can.

      The additions of Maryland and Rutgers prompted commissioner Jim Delany to talk about opening an East Coast office, where he’ll likely have enough square footage for more than two members.

      Big Ten revenue projections could reach $40 million per school by 2020, according to reports. Some in the industry are skeptical of that number, but when running this by two television experts, they say the Big Ten’s tradition and national brand can help them sell the East Coast markets they need.

      Despite all that, the Big Ten still has to persuade a school to wreck its own tradition and potentially damage a conference. Maybe that won’t matter if the money talks loudly enough, but remember the Big Ten capitalized on a school that was so financially deflated that it was cutting sports. Not that other schools don’t have debt, but Maryland was in a more dire situation than other in its own conference.

      FSU faced a $2.4 million shortfall based on USA Today reports of revenue/expenses, which, coupled with its disapproval of the league’s vote to implement a $50 million exit fee, makes the Seminoles potentially explosive in realignment.

      In some ways, the Big Ten will take what it can get, whichever school from a power conference is willing to bolt, possibly one with an Association of American Universities affiliation. Heck, UConn and Cincinnati out of the Big East would probably love to join.

      The ACC isn’t in bad financial shape. The 15-year media rights deal with ESPN pays $3.6 billion, and the addition of part-time lover Notre Dame (five football games per year plus other sports full time) should net each ACC school at least an additional $1 million per year. The Orange Bowl contract and playoff money will help.

      The league is looking into an ACC Network to help bridge the financial gap, but it’s hard to say how much money ESPN is willing to deliver. It’s already working with the SEC on a deal.

      Maybe the exit fee will stave off realignment, unless Maryland can change that. It’s fighting this in the courts. If the $50 million dwindles to $20 or $30 million, that changes things.

      http://www.cbssports.com/collegefootball/blog/jeremy-fowler/21736743/conference-realignment-can-acc-take-schools-for-their-word-

      • vp19 says:

        But if an ACC school is going to leave eventually — and the speculation persists with schools such as UNC, Georgia Tech and Virginia — the ACC might be the last to know. That’s how realignment works.

        If anyone should know this, it’s the ACC, from its snaring of Pittsburgh and Syracuse in September 2011. The head of the Big East didn’t know about it until he was told while at the West Virginia at Maryland game that weekend.

      • bullet says:

        One ACC poster made the comment last summer that everyone but Maryland, Clemson and FSU was delighted with the revised ACC contract ($17.1 million). One point towards ACC staying together is that the $12.9 million contract just kicked in last year and the renewal is kicking in, so all the ACC schools, while making less than the rest of the Big 5, are making considerably more than they were before.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      @Andy: Do you have a whole library of these posts written in advance? Every time FTT writes a new blog post, you post a recycled version of essentially the same comment.

      • Andy says:

        You do realize the same could be said of nearly every frequent poster on here. That’s because literally thousands of posts have been posted on the exact same topic for going on 3 years now.

    • C. Toda says:

      Andy I agree that the Big shouldn’t go past 16 . My choices are UVA and Pitt. I do not agree with your conclusion that all the /some off the schools in NC would then happly join the SEC. Come on ,they think of you as red necks.As you pointed out before, they want to run there own show .The South they represent is not the south of the SEC . If the big stops at 16 the ACC lives.

      • Andy says:

        I agree that UNC would rather stay in the ACC than the SEC. I do know that UNC fans (and maybe boosters) strongly prefer the SEC to the B1G. That may or may not matter.

      • BruceMcF says:

        While Pitt would seem very unlikely, its not a move that would destabilize the ACC much. UVA would destabilize the ACC more, but not as much as FSU receiving and accepting an invitation from either the Big Ten or SEC.

      • mushroomgod says:

        As a fan, I would love VA and PITT and stop……..that would not be a conquer the world or a maximizing profit scenerio but it would add great travel games for OSU, IU, Purdue, UM, Michigan, Rutgers, and MD, as well as two top-notch schools and 1 basketball mini-power.

        • BruceMcF says:

          Oh, as a FAN ~ hell, Pitt and Columbus are similar distances from this part of Northeast Ohio.

          I don’t see it happening unless ONLY UVA is available among UVA/UNC/Duke/GTech, Delany hits a brick wall with FSU, and the inclination of UVA to move has a countdown timer on it.

          Which I guess means, to paraphrase Dumb and Dumber, I’m saying there’s still a chance.

          • Brian says:

            Despite the proximity, Pitt never meant anything to me. Now I just wish them ill at every turn because of Mark May. I’d support any school in the US over Pitt joining the B10.

    • Watching the Detectives says:

      I didn’t think we were too good for Mizzou until I started reading your drivel. Go away.

    • cutter says:

      @Andy

      I think you’re joined the French Army’s General Staff circa 1940. They saw no evidence that German tanks and armored vehicles could move through the Ardennes Forest, but look what happened there. Blitzkrieg and France’s surrender in matter of weeks.

      Why would moving past 16 teams be controversial? It’s been talked about as a possibility for awhile now, including as points of discussion among Big Ten athletic directors who have been interviewed about expansion. What would be the controversy here? Conference realignment has taken place forever in college athletics. Television money has been an integral reason for many of these moves for at least the past two decades. It doesn’t seen to me we’re breaking any new ground here outside of how an 18- or 20-team conference would operate.

      Would some commentators think this is a harbinger of things to come? Yes, sure, but the super conference idea along with the contraction of Division 1-A/FBS has been talked about for awhile now. Given where things are trending now, who would be shocked if we saw some entity emerge with 64 to 80 programs in it organized around four or five large conferences?

      What Big Ten traditions would be diluted here? Would the basic composition of the conference change with any of the members we’ve discussed? Most of these schools are either the flagship universities of their state or in the case of Duke, a private school. All of them outside of FSU are AAU members with strong research portfolios that would be valuable to the CIC. They all have varied sports programs with at least 20 sports apiece (and in the case of UNC, 28) that could compete with the current B1G membership.

      Why do you think there would be diminishing returns if the conference added more members? One of the major goals of this exercise is to make the B1G athletic departments more self-sufficient financially? What makes you think the conference leadership would take any step that would hurt them in terms of overall net revenue per school?

      We’re all making our best assessments based on the information available. While you’re concentrating, for example, on what the NC Board of Governors would do, are you also looking at the state of finances in North Carolina itself and how that’s going to effect higher education (especially with Art Pope taking over as the state’s budget director)? What do you think the state government is going to do if UNC were provided the opportunity not only to put its athletic department on a firm financial footing, but also join an organization that could help bring more federal research dollars to the state?

      We’ll see what happens regarding North Carolina, but I do agree with you to the degree that getting UNC into the B1G will be more difficult than UVa or GaTech. The B1G has some tangible assets in place that would make it attractive to the decision makers in Chapel Hill and in the state capital. It’d be unwise to dismiss them out of hand.

      • gfunk says:

        @ Cutter,

        Certainly you raise some valid points, your prose is laced with good wit and to some degree humor. But if you think going beyond 16 isn’t going to dilute cultural togetherness & raise issues of tradition falling by the wayside you are a bit stuck in economic determinism. Perhaps better on-the-ground research is needed on your part: a sense of how the alum, administrators, respective fan-bases of some of these so-called particular expansion candidate schools feel-think about losing long-term membership and history in exchange for the grand old conference – the money. It’s not the sort of enthusiasm you may choose to take refuge in. This isn’t your fantasy Risk world.

        Frankly, BIG expansion, and I’m speaking hypothetically here, that seeks UNC, certainly ND, likely Duke,and God forbid Tx, will meet tremendous resistance by their fanbases. Thus casting the BIG as a Wall Street type takeover – no thanks. Do BIG fans, more importantly administrators, really want such a reputation? Even Md, for the most part, wasn’t keen on becoming future BIG members. The ACC has a lot of pride and tradition. Why not? They’ve been the dominant hoops conference since the rise of the modern era (1985). A lot of great rivalries have developed there over the decades. They’ve also become dominant in other sports that admittedly take a back seat to football (soccer, field hockey, lacrosse). ACC baseball is certainly on the rise, much further ahead than BIG baseball. While I agree ACC football is not quite the brand of the BIG, the two are quite close in terms of ability & on-field performance. Moreover, both are far behind the SEC, along with the rest of the conferences.

        I truly want to caution pro-BIG expansion types at this point. It’s ultimately much better if the conference expands to include schools who are more in the middle or slight favor of joining the BIG – as far as ACC candidates are concerned. Only FSU fits this criterion & I believe in part because they want to force the SEC’s hand. The vast majority of FSU fans prefer the SEC as their ultimate landing place. To think even UVa or GT prefer the BIG over the ACC is a bit delusional, but I do agree with others, they are more open than the above, esp ND (that ship sailed) and UNC. If only this expansion was driven by hoops, enthusiasm & to some degree less emphasis on academic pedigree: UConn and Kansas would clearly jump aboard – esp UConn. Louisville would have jumped as well – an underrated school and city that could be on par with the average BIG school in terms of academics in say 30 years.

        At the end of the day, the BIG is loaded with tradition, academic excellence, cultural depth & a loyal, long-term fanbase – this has all been achieved and maintained by current membership – let’s not take this for granted. But BIG baseball is awful, which matters to ACC candidates. BIG football too often flames during bowl season, so ACC candidates don’t see much of an upgrade in competitive edge. BIG basketball has won only 3 NC’s in the modern era & has too often come in second place – too often – and the best recruits frequently bolt the footprint (see especially the UIUC). Sadly, even in this great year of BIG basketball anything less than a NC will be a failure due to media perception and self-inflicted hype.

        In the end, quality versus quantity becomes more relevant to expansion candidates than we think. Just my opinions kind sir, just my opinions.

        • BuckeyeBeau says:

          and a Pennsylvania blogger who concurs.

          http://blog.pennlive.com/davidjones/2013/02/big_ten_expansion_north_caroli.html

          (ht: Rittenberg)

          • Andy says:

            Excellent article. This guy gets it. A must read.

          • gfunk says:

            BuckeyeBeau,

            A bit over the top, but yes, the author and I share the same, general view points. GT, Duke and UVa would have far more cultural compatibility than UNC & these 3 would still be different enough in the BIG – for at least a half decade. Va is becoming more Yankee, pardon the crude term, than NC will in the foreseeable future. The Research Triangle & say Asheville have culturally changed along Northernesque lines, but never downplay the rest of the state – quite Southern & will remain so.

            FSU would be odd, but I think more fans than not want out of the ACC – but as stated, they’d prefer the SEC by 2-1 odds (<– not scientific), just not the administrators I suppose. Florida is also more pluralistic than UNC. Northeasterners and Midwesterners have far more social presence in Florida, which is quickly becoming the California of the East Coast.

            No doubt mainstream culture has condensed in the age of digital technology – post-modernity in the academic sense – and such a seismic cultural shift is here to stay, I get it. But fans will always enjoy shorter road trips more than plane rides or double-digit to near double-digit hour car trips, esp in warmer weather. It's too bad we don't have European type train system.

            Geographic intimacy is what makes all conferences ultimately tighter – including the BIG.

          • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

            David Jones wrote much more eloquently than me, but its the same point I have been making for months.

          • Sam B says:

            Under the traditional definition of a conference, I agree. However, I think the projected quasi-merger with the ACC will serve to redefine what a conference is. There’s no doubt that there will effectively be two cultural spheres within the new B1G. But that doesn’t mean there isn’t any glue.

            With conferences owning their own networks, larger is better, and money matters. But secondly, we aren’t dealing with random schools… we are talking about a merger of some of the best academic schools in the country. There may always be a schism between football schools, but the CIC is going to be one powerful unit that any school will both feel at home in, and will never choose to leave willingly.

          • Bikemore says:

            The David Jones blog should be required reading for everyone in this and the other echo chambers.

            A lot of the people who follow conference expansion surely also enjoy Risk and similar games, and get a bit of a thrill when they see it happening in real life. But the common wisdom of expansion seems to have no room for assessing cultural fit. Frank in particular has ignored, even scoffed at it. I think that’s a tremendous mistake for anyone who wants the conference to stick together longterm.

          • Brian says:

            I’m anti-expansion, but he lost me as soon as he tried to frame this as a moral issue. That’s nonsense. Then his crap about how this would hurt the people of NC. Really? Nobody is talking about cancelling UNC hoops, just changing some of their schedule. I think the brave people of NC would survive just fine.

            The ACC is only 60 years old and has changed a lot over the years.

            Timeline:
            1953 – ACC forms with MD, Clemson, SC, Duke, UNC, NCSU and WF (7)
            1953 – UVA joined (8)
            1971 – SC left (7)
            1978 – GT joined (8)
            1991 – FSU joined (9)
            2004 – VT and Miami joined (11)
            2005 – BC joined (12)
            2013 – Syracuse and Pitt join (14)
            2014 – ND joins partially (15)
            2014 – MD leaves (14)
            2014 – UL joins (15)

            2 of 7 founding members are gone or will be gone. 10 new schools have joined at various times. Only 1/3 of the 2014 ACC will be founding members, but 1 of them leaving will destroy the ACC? I don’t buy it.

            Then he compares this to the Nazis. That should end any discussion of this piece. Last I checked, Delany didn’t have plans to slaughter millions of Carolinians or the means to do so.

            He follows up with this gem, “This is why: People belong with their own kind.” Hey, let’s use the rationale for segregation. That’s a great idea when discussing the south.

            He talks about how many PSU fans feel like they still don’t belong. Well, that’s because he’s talking to eastern PA fans of PSU. You know, the ones who just got RU and MD added so they’d feel more at home. But expansion is bad, because other cultures don’t belong, right? Well, perhaps MD will feel more at home with more ACC teams. Conversely, any future ACC teams will have at least 1 old friend in the bunch.

            In addition, he ignores the chance that people in the south and midwest might have things in common despite not having the same things in common with the easterners in PA. I’d argue that rural cultures often share a lot of values and don’t share them with the cities (Atlanta vs GA, Charlotte vs NC, Chicago vs IL, midwest vs east coast, etc). He also ignores that UNC has been in a league ranging from Boston to Miami for years. They don’t exactly fit like a glove in the current ACC either. A future B10 with 2+ other former ACC schools, some hoops-mad schools like IN, PU, MSU and IL, and a bunch of elite state flagship research universities wouldn’t be a terrible fit for them.

          • Brian says:

            Bikemore,

            “But the common wisdom of expansion seems to have no room for assessing cultural fit. Frank in particular has ignored, even scoffed at it.”

            You’re just wrong. This blog has discussed cultural fit in all its dimensions more often than any other site that discusses conference realignment. Just because we aren’t discussing it now doesn’t mean we never considered it. We’ve had the discussion and moved on.

            http://frankthetank.wordpress.com/2009/12/27/the-big-ten-expansion-index-a-different-shade-of-orange/

            Go back to Frank’s first post that made him a “star” (12/27/2009) and see what criteria he listed for choosing potential candidates.

            “There are 6 categories (Academics, TV Brand Value, Football Brand Value, Basketball Brand Value, Historic Rivalries/Cultural Fit, and Mutual Interest) that receive different weights depending upon how important they are in the decision-making process.”

            He was talking about fit before anyone else but Delany. Everyone else just talked football teams. We’ve had years to discuss it.

            Besides, Frank has been one of the staunchest proponents of the ACC being strong. He’s defended their ability to stay together more than anyone else, and fit has been a big part of his argument.

          • Bikemore says:

            Brian – you say that “We’ve had the discussion and moved on.”

            That sums up a lot of what I find so ridiculous about some of the posts here. You really, truly believe that you’ve reached some sort of collective wisdom on many of these subjects, thereby allowing you to now “move on.” People who challenge the conclusions that you think you’ve reached are simply deemed to be wrong, and in some cases racist, as your previous post implies.

            The fact that you and others may think that cultural fit is a non-issue does not make it so. I continue to believe that you’re missing a big part of the picture by wilfully ignoring it.

          • ccrider55 says:

            No, he said culture does matter. What culture are we talking about? It’s not t-shirt fan culture. It considers politics in as much as it impacts the universities involved. But primarily it is the university presidents and chancellors, and the universities they run. This isn’t state wide electoral politics.

          • Brian says:

            Bikemore,

            “Brian – you say that “We’ve had the discussion and moved on.”

            That sums up a lot of what I find so ridiculous about some of the posts here. You really, truly believe that you’ve reached some sort of collective wisdom on many of these subjects, thereby allowing you to now “move on.””

            Good for you. Unfortunately, you assume that reaching the end of discussion means we reached some group consensus. Instead, if you bothered to actually look at some of that discussion, you’d see that we reached a point where nothing new was being said and no more minds were being changed. Thus we moved on to new topics. There is no point in continuing a discussion once everyone has made up their mind. It doesn’t mean we all suddenly dropped the issue from our minds, but we got sick of repeating ourselves.

            “People who challenge the conclusions that you think you’ve reached are simply deemed to be wrong,”

            Of course I deem anyone that reaches a different conclusion from mine as wrong. So do all the people that disagree with me. It’s not like we all agree on any issue around here.

            “and in some cases racist, as your previous post implies.”

            No, I flat out stated that his arguments were horrible. He compared the B10 to the Nazis and later made that statement. It’s not my fault he said the exact same thing that a racist might say.

            “The fact that you and others may think that cultural fit is a non-issue does not make it so.”

            Unfortunately for you I never said it was a non-issue. I pointed out that there are many aspects to culture that the writer ignored and that he used bad logic (B isn’t like A, and B isn’t like C, so A isn’t like C). Culture isn’t just one thing, and the culture of the school is different from the culture of it’s location. The question of cultural fit is about shades of gray and how different is too different. There is no correct answer, just opinions, and only those of TPTB matter.

            “I continue to believe that you’re missing a big part of the picture by wilfully ignoring it.”

            I continue to believe that you have no idea what I or others think on many issues and show your ignorance every time you tell us what it is that we think. Just because we aren’t discussing an issue currently doesn’t mean we’ve made a decision or ignored the issue. It means you walked into an ongoing conversation and missed the first part of it.

        • cutter says:

          @gfunk-

          I think you mistakenly identify the stakeholders of a particular university and its athletic program with the actual decision makers who have to evaluate whether or not a school will move to another athletic conferece.

          For example, you cite fan bases reaction as a point of consideration that should go into this decision. Now I’ll grant you that fan base support can help guide a decision–the case of Texas A&M leaving the Big XII for the SEC is a perfect example. OTOH, as we know with Maryland, there was a close circle of decision makers who went forward with the move based on a very pragmatic reason that not only providing more revenue for the athletic department and bringing back sports that had recently been cut, but also because it afford UMd to join the CIC, which it’s schedule to do one year prior to the Terrapins becoming a member of the B1G on the athletic side.

          I rather suspect that schools will expand or contract the number of decision makers regarding moving to another conference based on its own unique situation and management style. I recall, for example, the utter free for all that took place at Notre Dame back in 1999 when there were discussion about them becoming the 12th member of the Big Ten. You had students, alums, staff, professors, administrators, fund raisers, etc. all arguing and pointing in different directions about what should have been done. ND may have been one of the few examples I can think of where a conference move wasn’t made due to these wider reactions.

          In sum, what I’m saying is that there’s no single right way to do this, and that includes how much input the stakeholders you identify should be part of the ultimate decision. If past is prologue, then most of the decisions to move to other conferences will actually be closely held by a small group of people and not the larger university community.

          Now as far as revenue is concerned, I can only reiterate what I’ve written before in my analysis of the athletic department finances of all the target schools in the ACC. Without going at it in length, Georgia Tech, Florida State, Duke and North Carolina are essentially revenue neutral operations overall, but have specific problems that I’ve outlined in earlier posts. Virginia is in the best financial situation in terms of overall revenue, but it relies very heavily on student fees (over $900 per student) and contributions to keep its operations in the black. In sum, all of them could put themselves on much firmer financial footing joining the Big Ten or the SEC given the conference distribution projections both organizations are offering.

          You also talk about the quality of ACC programs, but keep in mind that they need money not only to operate, but to compete. In simple terms, if ACC schools are being outspent by SEC and B1G programs across the board in athletics, then they’re going to operate at a continual competitive disadvantage that is not going to be rectified. Those disadvantages are going to manifest themselves in coaching salaries or recruiting budgets or facilities upgrades or a combination of the above.

          In an environment where schools are being squeezed by reductions in state budgets in concert with a prolonged economic dowhturn, university leadership has to make real decisions going forward–and it extends beyond the viability of the athletic department. As I’ve written before, the target universities are also major research schools with large budgets (many times more than the athletic departments) that are competing for funds. In a competitive environment where multiple schools are submitting proposals for funding, being part of the CIC is what is called in military jargon, a “force multiplier”. MGoBlog has an excellent breakdown that you can read here–http://mgoblog.com/diaries/b1g-expansion-dollars-research-edition

          One final thing. You describe the Big Ten’s actions as something akin to a Wall Street takeover, but that’s a real mischaracterization of what’s going on here. Jim Delany isn’t buying their stock or firing their board of directors or downsizing the company and sell off the parts for profit. He and the conference presidents and chancellors are talking to, consulting with and ultimately inviting schools to join the B1G. That’s a voluntary decision by the schools who receive the invites. Now outside of a non-disclosure agreement, those universities have the option to go about the decision making process in the manner they see fit–and they can always say no to what is actually a business proposition if they feel it’s not to their overall benefit by whatever measure they want to use.

          • bullet says:

            If A&M’s president is to be believed, their fans were not relevant. He said he made up his mind in 2010 and was just waiting for the right time. He did his best to stir up the fan base and may have been manipulating them to support what he had already decided to do.

          • ccrider55 says:

            I recall the websider writer who first called the aTm to the SEC as still alive and well not many months after the 2010 episode. He consistently and steadfastly claimed it was an almost done deal long before the “groundswell.” Whenever apparent roadblocks arose he continued to believe his admin sources when they told him almost nothing could stop it. He did seem to have very reliable sources regarding aTm, and to a lesser extent Missouri’s move.

          • BruceMcF says:

            So in other words, while the fans were not decisive, they were relevant, or A&M wouldn’t have invested effort in generating a pro-move faction among the fan base.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Yes. The decision had been made, and building support is pretty much a universal strategy as rumors leak. Perhaps that’s backwards, rumors leak to begin building support (or identify resistance).

          • David Brown says:

            Cutter, you are absolutely correct: If North Carolina and some of the others would join the B10, it would be a Vertical Integration not Horizontal. What does it mean? It means the B10 goal is to expand the footprint of the B10 (And naturally the Television Market), into new areas (Such as North Carolina), not monopolize their current markets (This is what would happen in Western Pennsylvania if say Pitt joined the B10). The funny thing about Expansion is the only ones who really are against it are: 1: Schools left behind (Like Cincinnati). 2: Fans of Schools. As an example: Like most Nitt fans, I certainly would prefer seeing Pitt & West Virginia to Michigan & Michigan State (No shock I am a Steeler and Penguin fan). I know the Penn State fans in the Easern part of the State (Such as in Philadelphia) don’t agree with me about this, but if you look at our basketball recruiting history, you see an inability to recruit decently in Philly. Why? Because we are not considered a local school (Unlike: Villanova, Penn, LaSalle, Temple & even St Joes). 3: Those people who are for “Purity” and who are against Capitalism. But the reality of the matter is what we think really does not matter. As long as Penn State is doing better financially, they will stay in the B10, and if UNC thinks they can make a lot more $$$$ leaving the ACC they certainly will, and the B10 will be happy to have them.

        • BruceMcF says:

          “Frankly, BIG expansion, and I’m speaking hypothetically here, that seeks UNC, certainly ND, likely Duke,and God forbid Tx, will meet tremendous resistance by their fanbases.”

          However, these are membership organizations not publicly trade corporations ~ if UNC leaves the ACC in response to a Big Ten invitation, it will be a voluntary move by UNC, not a hostile take-over.

          I loved a good game of Risk when I was younger, but at the same time I would be quite pleased if the Big Ten would stop at 14, because, unlike Risk, there’s no end game where there is only going to be one winner. I loved a good game of Monopoly when I was younger, but at the same time, we have to recognize that the Major Conferences are not playing Monopoly, they are playing Oligopoly, with Three, Four and Five winners all possible outcomes, and in all of those possible outcomes, the Big Ten will be one of the winners.

          However, given the present finances of cable TV, it seems likely that the only way the Big Ten stops at 14 for an extended period of time if tries to expand and its targets end up turning it down, and then toward the end of the current decade, a decline in cable household penetration starts to take fuel off the fire of conference realignment.

      • ChicagoMac says:

        @Cutter is making some very good points here. I thought I’d take a minute to jump up and down and make sure people are reading his wisdom.

        1. People that think of this as “Conference Expansion” (from 12 to n) might be missing the larger point that it is actually a long and painstakingly arduous contraction. Essentially FBS (or Division 1-A if you prefer) are being separated into two groups.
        2. Within the two groups there is something of a consolidation of power and a revenue optimization effort going on.
        3. University Presidents and the Boards that oversee them are under a great deal of strain these days. There are budget pressures, major issues with student outcomes, a developing student loan crisis, and rapidly increasing pressure from very high quality/very low cost online courses. Here is a letter from a new President at a major research institution to give you a sense on how one of them views some of these pressures: http://www.purdue.edu/president/messages/2013/130118-MED-letter.pdf

        Add it all up and I would just caution people that the way we view conference expansion (from 12 – n) today might be completely different than how we view the topic 5-10 years from now.

        What looks like a brazen money grab today might in fact one day be seen as obvious and necessary moves. These changes, which seem dramatic in some ways, might very well seem very minor in the years ahead against the backdrop of what could be some massive changes to the University system in general and to College Athletics in particular.

        • Andy says:

          There’s nothing “obvious” or “necessary” about combining North Carolina with Nebraska, Virginia with Wisconsin, or Georgia Tech with Michigan State. It’s a senseless money grab.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            In a conference that already spans from Nebraska to Maryland, adding Virginia and North Carolina is at least as obvious, and is probably more so, than adding Boston College and Syracuse to a league that includes Clemson and Miami.

            What you call a “money grab” is the way collegiate athletics has worked for decades. That ship has sailed.

          • cutter says:

            Oh, it’s a money grab, but there’s nothing senseless about it. These schools are making decisions with a spreadsheet in one hand and with a view of what they feel is best for their universities based on the criteria that want to use. I have to imagine given the run up we’ve seen to date that any additional schools that join the B1G will have had plenty of time for mature reflection on what they should do.

            I know you’re butt hurt by the fact Missouri was rejected by the Big Ten, but your rantings are becoming a bit tedious. Maybe you should stay away from this board for awhile and come back again in a few months when there’s more hard information on what’s going to happen. Perhaps you should wait for the conclusion of the ACC/Maryland lawsuit, for example?

            Of course, when you consider recent SEC expansion, what’s so “obvious” or “necessary” about combining Texas A&M with South Carolina or Missouri with Florida? How about future scenarios where LSU is combined with Virginia Tech or Arkansas with NC State? Do those make “more sense” because they’re all located in the old Confederacy?

          • frug says:

            It’s a senseless money grab.

            If they are doing it for money then it’s not senseless…

          • Ms. B1G says:

            Kind of like how there is something obvious about combining North Carolina with Missouri, North Carolina State with Texas A&M and Virginia Tech with Arkansas? Not sure why making sound business decisions is a money grab.

          • drwillini says:

            As opposed to linking Missouri with Georgia and South Carolina. What is your great new found affinity with palmettos and peanuts? Last time I drove through Missouri I saw corn fields.

          • Andy says:

            Missouri was a slave state.

          • Andy says:

            Also, until recently tobacco was a pretty big crop in Missouri. And they still grow cotton in southern Missouri. Missouri borders 3 SEC states: Arkansas, Tennessee, and Kentucky. But nice try.

          • Andy says:

            Contrast that to North Carolina, which has basically nothing in common with any of the original Big Ten schools.

            Some of you may find me tedioius because I keep poking gaping holes in your silly theories.

          • BruceMcF says:

            @ drwillini ~ the boundary between The South and The Midwest may not be precisely defined, but it clearly runs THROUGH Missouri, not along the Missouri state boundary line.

            What’s bizarre is placing Missouri in the Eastern Division of the SEC, but if the SEC expands with two adds from the ACC, that is a peculiarity that can be fixed.

          • Andy says:

            It’s not that bad. Missouri mostly wants to play the border schools Kentucky, Tennessee, Vandy, and Arkansas, and the way the schedule is set up Mizzou plays all 4 every year starting in 2014 when Arkansas takes over as Missouri’s cross-divisional rival, unless the conference changes before then.

          • Brian says:

            Andy,

            “There’s nothing “obvious” or “necessary” about combining North Carolina with Nebraska, Virginia with Wisconsin, or Georgia Tech with Michigan State. It’s a senseless money grab.”

            You mean like combining Mizzou with UF, except without the money grabbing part? Yeah, that was pretty senseless.

          • ChicagoMac says:

            @Andy…

            You realize that its 2013 and we are talking about major universities here right?

            Slavery was outlawed almost 150 years ago. I really don’t see what that and tobacco production has to do with the topic. Are there huge federal grants available in tobacco research?

          • vp19 says:

            Gee, Andy, with your references to slavery, tobacco and cotton, one wonders why Mizzou hadn’t targeted joining the SEC for decades. We heard so much talk coming out of Columbia about that, didn’t we?

            Maryland has a similar slavery/agricultural heritage to Missouri, but most residents here know the state can’t be judged iin 2013 by 1853 or 1933 standards. And while the surprise move to the Big Ten caught most off guard, as people learn the many academic, athletic and economic benefits of membership, leaving the ACC increasingly becomes less painful.

          • Andy says:

            you realize I brought up slavery, tobacco and cotton in direct reference to drwillini bringing up corn in Missouri. It was a direct rebuttal to that.

            No I don’t think it’s all that relevant, but those are the facts. Missouri was a slave state. They grow tobacco and cotton. They border Arkansas, Tennessee, and Kentucky. Large parts of the state speak with a southernish accent. Missouri has a hell of a lot in common with several SEC states/schools.

            North Carolina has almost nothing in common with the Big Ten schools/states.

            Feel free to gang up on me with your bs nonsense arguments though. Strength in numbers, right?

          • Ms. B1G says:

            Are you saying being former slave states is the tie that binds the SEC schools together and should make NC a natural fit in that conference? Why would NC want to have that association. Good grief Andy, slavery ended a long time ago. To keep associations based upon those lines is counterproductive. NC will make a fiduciary decision that is in it’s long-term best interests if it comes to leaving their current conference. It could be the SEC. It could be the Big 10. One way or another the numbers will tell a story and I doubt it will be related to which conference has more schools in former slave states. If those regions continue growing with significant numbers of Big 10 graduates and transplants from the “dying” rust belt, those regions will become more and more “northern” while the rural areas will remain “southern” and not much different than the rural areas of Iowa, Indiana, Illinois or Missouri for that matter. NC the school would fit fine culturally in the Big 10. There are differences but not so much that they can not be overcome.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            Missouri was a slave state. They grow tobacco and cotton. They border Arkansas, Tennessee, and Kentucky. Large parts of the state speak with a southernish accent.

            Yes, which would explain why they were dying to get a Big Ten invite.

            North Carolina has almost nothing in common with the Big Ten schools/states.

            What does Nebraska have in common with new Jersey? Both are now in the Big Ten.

          • Andy says:

            nobody wants to be bound by slavery. it’s just one of the must readily obvious signs of the cultural divide. Michigan has more in common with New Jersey than it does with North Carolina.

            As for Missouri, it’s basically two states in one. Missouri was a state divided, and still is. St. Louis fits right in with the Big Ten. Other areas fit in with the SEC. That’s why it could go either way.

        • ChicagoMac says:

          Partisan nonsense doesn’t interest me. This is a perfect example of the issue. There was a non-partisan discussion going on yet you were hellbent on turning it into yet another partisan debate, which leads to silly partisan retorts, which leads to you talking about slavery and tobacco.

          Seriously, this is idiotic.

          • Andy says:

            I brought up slavery and tobacco because drwillini said Missouri can’t be in the SEC because Missouri grows corn.

            None of this is partisan. I went to Mizzou for undergrad when it was a Big 12 school, went to Michigan (a Big Ten school) for graduate school, and now work for a Pac 12 school in California and attend mostly Pac 12 games. My loyalties are all over the place.

            What I’ve said in this discussion is far more logical than most anyone else here, including you.

            I was responding to an idiotic statement about corn with an equally idiotic statement abou tobacco and slaves. Yeah they grow corn in northern Missouri, so what? They grow cotton in southern Missouri.

            As for slavery, how many slave states are there in the Big Ten? answer: zero, soon to be one, Maryland. That’s out of, what, 11 states? And how many non-slave states in the SEC? Zero. So how is that not relevant? Slave state/non-slave state doesn’t directly matter today, no. But it’s a telltale sign of the culture of a state/region. North Carolina is a southern state. There are no less than three former slave states to the north of it. You don’t think that matters? If not, you are sorely mistaken.

          • metatron says:

            ^I rationalize it by Union/Confederate lines, and you know, pretend the occupied/divided states were loyal after all.

          • ChicagoMac says:

            Andy, in this little sub-thread you responded to a post that talked generically about conferences expanding beyond 12. There was not a single mention of a conference or university in the thread yet you responded with one of your partisan posts.

            Your initial response was idiotic as it completely ignores on of the primary drivers in all of this, institutional fit. One could argue that UNC, GT and UVA fit better in the B1G than they do even in the current ACC based on academic peers, research focus, their relationship with their States, etc. However, you ignore all of that and end up posting some nonsense about tobacco and slavery.

            Don’t blame drwilllini, you started this little bout with stupidity.

          • Andy says:

            ChicagoMac, the only stupidity is thinking that this is only about institutions. These instiatutions are made up of people. The people have regional identities. This isn’t a board game, it’s real life. Culture matters. Ignore it at your own peril.

    • zeek says:

      That’s a well done chart. Only thing I’d change is to move UNC down to below Duke at the “Guarded Risk of Secession”; other than that, looks accurate.

      • zeek says:

        Main reason I say that despite the fact that they’d move either before or in tandem with Duke is that 1) they’re dealing with all sorts of academic-athletic issues that have roiled their leadership, and 2) there’s still the NC State situation to resolve.

      • bullet says:

        Most of the Big 12 expansion rumors involve Miami coupled with FSU now. At one point it seemed noone was interested in Miami, but the rumors are that Fox is, so the Big 12 is. Makes sense.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          Miami makes a ton of sense for the Big XII. FSU would like to keep playing both Miami and UF every year. That gets pretty hard to do if all three are in different conferences, but easy to do if both move together to the Big XII. That’s one thing the Big XII can offer that the Big Ten won’t.

          It would also give the Big XII a fourth king and better competitive balance when they split into divisions again. Presumably, if the Big XII gets FSU and Miami, then they get Clemson too, and the big question is who’s #14.

          (All of this assumes that the Big Ten moves first; I don’t see any school leaving the ACC unless the Big Ten moves again.)

          • cfn_ms says:

            I tend to agree. FSU + Miami gives the Big 12 a MAJOR presence in Florida, and while the SEC is still king there, it’s much more competitive, and the ACC becomes irrelevant there.

          • vp19 says:

            Miami is a king in name only, with fan support an inch deep. And on the field, Wake Forest has had more success in the post-expansion ACC than the Hurricanes.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            @vp19: I’m pretty sure Miami games attract far better TV ratings than Wake Forest games. That’s what makes them a king, not their recent won-lost record. (Although, for what it’s worth, the chances of Miami eventually returning to glory are quite a bit better than the chances of Wake Forest getting there for the first time.)

          • zeek says:

            Miami has name recognition off 2-3 decades of winning big which ended around a decade ago.

            The name value that they bring to matchups won’t go anywhere though unless they’re bad for an extended period.

          • cfn_ms says:

            Miami’s fan support is clearly limited, but they also at least may bring the potential to peel off the Miami area from the rest of the Florida (where the SEC is #1), and there’s still a lot of talent there. In the right hands, they could potentially be really good again, and even if not, they bring a fair amount to a league just by the merit of being #1 in a high talent area (Miami).

            I suspect that’s not really enough for B1G or SEC to be all that interested, but a next tier league like the Big 12 could very well find that to be quite attractive. Especially since the U compares reasonably well on the overall merits to recent adds like TCU (redundant market presence, very up and down historically) and West Virginia (not much recruiting talent or media market in that state, not a historical power), much less other programs tossed around as potential Big 12 adds.

          • wmwolverine says:

            Too much talent in South Florida for Miami to stay down, they should be a top 15 program even if their facilities are awful.

          • frug says:

            @wmwolverine

            There’s a ton of talent in Houston and New Orleans too, but that has helped Rice or Tulane.

            It’s hard small elite private schools to stay competitive when they aren’t cheating.

          • Richard says:

            How do you define “competitive”? Even if you exclude USC, both Stanford and Northwestern (with far higher academic standards for athletes and located in worse-far worse, in the case of NU–local recruiting grounds) have done pretty well in their respective leagues.

          • zeek says:

            @frug

            It’s different in South Florida though. Down here, Miami is much more like USC is in South California than anything else.

            It’s roughly equal with Florida and Florida State with the right coaches. There’s no reason why Miami can’t pull in top 10 classes annually with the right coaching staff (if they get out under this NCAA cloud).

          • @zeek – I’m a believer in this. Miami is located in arguably the best pound-for-pound recruiting region in the country. That’s going to always serve as a buoy for them and why you can’t count them out long-term. I’m not big on using the excuse of “all they need is the right coach” for the vast majority of programs, but I truly believe that it’s the case where Miami absolutely has the structure to excel as long as it has the right coach. The location alone is just too good.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            There’s a ton of talent in Houston and New Orleans too, but that has helped Rice or Tulane.

            Competitiveness in collegiate athletics tends to be self-reinforcing. The best athletes want to go where they’ll win, so they pick schools with a history of winning. As a result those schools keep winning, and the cycle repeats itself.

            It has nothing to do with being private. There is no logical reason why Nebraska is terrific at football, and Kansas isn’t; but in basketball, it’s the reverse. Schools, for whatever reason or accidents of history, became “kings” in certain sports. Once acquired, that status is difficult to lose. If you don’t have it, it’s difficult to attain.

            It’s hard small elite private schools to stay competitive when they aren’t cheating.

            You paint with far too broad a brush. USC has been strong in football for decades, and no one has suggested that they cheated the entire time. I’m pretty sure Notre Dame has never had a major violation.

            In basketball, there are a number of private schools with very strong records over a long period of time, with no insinuation of persistent cheating.

          • frug says:

            @Marc

            Competitiveness in collegiate athletics tends to be self-reinforcing. The best athletes want to go where they’ll win, so they pick schools with a history of winning. As a result those schools keep winning, and the cycle repeats itself.

            Well Miami doesn’t have a history of winning. Prior to 1980 they were nothing, so it is entirely possible that history is repeating itself. Maybe ’81-’03 was the anomaly.

            USC has been strong in football for decades, and no one has suggested that they cheated the entire time. I’m pretty sure Notre Dame has never had a major violation.

            USC isn’t a small private school. It has 38,000+ students.

            Notre Dame is an exception to a lot of rules. It’s the only small private school to ever win consistently.

            There is no logical reason why Nebraska is terrific at football, and Kansas isn’t; but in basketball, it’s the reverse.

            Kansas is good at basketball because the founder of their program invented the game. Nebraska is good at football because they were the first school in the region to actually invest in the sport (the Big 8 was nicknamed Nebraska and the Seven Dwarfs for decades until Oklahoma had their rise).

          • frug says:

            @Zeek

            Admittedly I don’t live down there, but nothing suggests that Miami has anywhere near the local support that USC does. USC generally averages 75,000 attendance in down years. Miami is lucky to break 60,000 when it’s on a title run.

          • bullet says:

            @frug
            I agree with your point about fan support, but USC has had a number of years in the 50s in attendance (1999-2001). Of course, Miami had a year where they only drew 28k.

          • frug says:

            Yeah, I exaggerated that, but my overall point was USC’s good years are better than Miami’s, and their bad years are no where near as putrid as the Hurricanes.

          • loki_the_bubba says:

            Also note that USC is much larger than Miami. c.37k total for SC and c15k total for Miami. Southern Cal is very very large for a private school.

          • Richard says:

            Yes, USC & NYU are gigantic for private schools. No coincidence that they’re in the 2 largest metropolitan areas. BU is another private that is as big as a state school.

            The only other 2 privates that are over 30K are religious (BYU and Liberty).

          • BruceMcF says:

            “It would also give the Big XII a fourth king and better competitive balance when they split into divisions again. Presumably, if the Big XII gets FSU and Miami, then they get Clemson too, and the big question is who’s #14.”

            Pitt would probably still be available, and they’d make a reasonable match with a current Big12 school that is at present isolated all by its lonesome on an island. A mountainous (though progressively less so over time) island.

          • As someone who has spent almost all of my life in South Florida, the argument that Miami doesn’t have fan support is not at all true. When Miami is winning in any sport, The U is the biggest thing in town, or no worse than tied for first with the Dolphins. The problem for Miami is that their fans only come out when they’re really good, or when they’re playing FSU or UF. If Miami got good again, it would come close to selling out the stadium again. It’s just a Miami thing. There’s too much to do in Miami other than sports. Not to mention the heat. Nobody wants to stand in crowd of 60,000 in 100 degree heat to watch their team get annihiliated. But even if those fans don’t show up to gameday, they do watch the games on television which is what this is all about. Another thing for potential conferences to consider is the Latin American market. If Larry Scott thinks he can market California schools in China, Japan, and Korea, whoever takes Miami could certainly at least make the attempt with Latin America. If the Big 10 were wise, they’d take Miami and FSU. Before you scoff, Miami is extremely close to AAU status. Not to mention Big 10 alums. Don’t have the figures, but I’d bet there are more Big 10 alums within a two hour driving distance of UM’s stadium than anywhere outside of the Midwest and possibly New York City.

          • frug says:

            @Jeffrey

            The problem is unless Miami is winning 10 games a year they are dead weight, and they have never demonstrated they can sustain that level of performance without cheating.

          • I would argue that no major program has ever maintained success without cheating.

  52. bullet says:

    For Nostradamus or others familiar with the B1G TV contracts:
    A question arose on what the BTN is distributing. From the Michigan FOIA tax return release which showed total B1G distributions of $24.6 million, it appears the BTN distributed a total of $7.2/school million including rights fees and profit distributions. Originally, I thought that was on top of rights fees. So what is BTN distributing total?

    What I do know about the B1G contracts:
    ESPN/ABC expires 2016-17 averages $100 million/year
    CBS basketball expires 2016-17 averages $12 million/year
    Fox CCG expires 2016-17 averages $24 million/year (saw $145/6 years)
    BTN 2007-2031-32 averages $112 million/year
    The above averages to $20.67 million/year/school.

    So what is that BTN $112 million? Does it include profit distributions and how does that relate to the $7.9 (times 11 schools is $87 million) and $7.2 that have been distributed the last two years.

    • zeek says:

      The $112 million is just the average expected value over 25 years ($2.8 billion spread over 25 years); starting at $60-65 million and going up to $175-180 million over that 25 year period. It’s just the normal gain rate of a television contract averaged over the 25 years. But that was just the expected value for an 11 school Big Ten over 25 years; the numbers should be significantly higher with Nebraska/Maryland/Rutgers for the remaining 20 years. Thus, that $112 million number is effectively meaningless now.

      Here’s the actual numbers for 2011:
      2011 numbers (from SNL Kagan):

      BTN revenue: $242 million
      BTN profit: $79.2 million

      The payouts to schools are made up of a split of that profit and rights fees since Fox owns 51%.

      • zeek says:

        So per school, you’re looking at around $4-5 million per school of the $7.2 million coming from rights fees and the remainder from BTN profit.

      • zeek says:

        Maybe I misunderstood what you were asking, but the answer is that the $2.8 billion over 25 years (or $112 million per year) that you’re asking about includes rights fees and profit distributions.

        The $7.9 million per school in 2011 and $7.2 million per school in 2012 include both as well.

        • Kevin says:

          I believe that is only rights fees. Profit distributions are on an ex post basis.

        • bullet says:

          Thanks. You exactly answered my question.

        • Kevin says:

          The $2.8 Billion is only rights fees and was for the original 11 schools. Those rights fees have been adjusted for the new school additions.(Nebraska only to date) Terms have not be released.

          BTN distributions per school in 2013/2014 are close to $10 million. Profit distributions are likely minimal at this point. We don’t know exactly how the profits are distributed as true conference ownership % remains somewhat of a mystery.

          • zeek says:

            “If News Corp. hits its financial projections, which are based on a guaranteed rights fee, an equity share agreement with the league, the full 25-year life of the deal and hitting all sales thresholds, it would translate into an average of $112 million annually paid to the conference and $10.18 million to each school.”

            The $2.8 billion was the total 25 year payout for an 11 school Big Ten.

          • Kevin says:

            The rights fees were tied to financial hurdles because Fox was taking a big risk. If the network failed to gain basic carriage then Fox would not be on the hook to pay rights fees for 25 years. This has nothing to do with profit distribution. The network has far surpassed the initial threshold.

      • wmwolverine says:

        The ‘major’ driving force of expansion is new markets and inventory for the BTN. That inventory (even mediocre BTN content like Indiana/Northwestern) are receiving good ratings (in their local markets), significant carriage fees, advertising rates…

        Maryland, New Jersey, Virginia, North Carolina has a lot of population, cable/satellite subscribers.

        • zeek says:

          Yeah, if we do end up with a Big Ten with 18-20 teams, the 25 year payout (including the past 5 years) is likely to probably end up around $4-5 billion as opposed to the predicted $2.8 billion for the 11 team configuration.

      • Nostradamus says:

        @Zeek,

        This is from a 2008 10-Q filed by News Corp

        “In July 2007, the Company entered into a contract with the Big Ten Conference for rights to telecast certain Big Ten Conference sporting events through fiscal 2032. The Company will pay approximately $2.8 billion over the term of the contract for these rights.”

        Taken literally, the $2.8 billion is the rights fee only. It certainly is possible that News Corp is looking at this knowing from the start that they’d end up becoming the majority owner and would be paying BTN 49% of the profits, but I’m not sure I would’ve worded the above blurb the same way if that were the case.

        —-
        I still go back and forth on what that $2.8 billion actually includes or doesn’t include.

    • Kevin says:

      @ bullet – Since those are averages and we are already in the back half of the contract the current numbers are above the average payout.

    • BruceMcF says:

      So the difference between $87m and $112m is the difference between the revenue generated last year and an average of projected revenues over 25 years.

  53. Mike says:

    ESPN Matches NBC’s offer.

    http://ajerseyguy.com/?p=5238&utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=catholic-7-and-big-east-ready-to-make-plans


    Those moves will start to speed up once the Big East decides its television status with either ESPN or NBC as the prime rights holder. ESPN on Thursday “matched’ the NBC offer of a week ago.

    • zeek says:

      $20-23 million is a really cheap price to pay to keep the Big East content away from NBC Sports Network.

    • greg says:

      jersey guy really really needs an editor.

      ESPN may as well throw $23M at Big East for ESPN3 filler. Though it looks like their matching offer isn’t truly a match.

      • BruceMcF says:

        Per the SBJ article that Quiet Storm cites below, ESPN has matched the money, they are still negotiating on whether ESPN is matching the exposure, with ESPN looking at possibly sublicensing some games to Fox Sports One. IIRC, getting slotted into ESPNU so often was cited as a problem with the present Big East ESPN contract, at the time that a minority of the Big East (who have all since escaped to greener pastures) knocked back the $130m ESPN offer.

    • Brian says:

      Mike,

      Of more interest to me was this bit:

      “With 10 teams for the next few years, the Big East also will make a strong push to get the a rule change lowering the number of teams necessary to hold a championship game from 12 to 10 teams.”

      That will make 2 leagues pushing for that. It’s not in the interests of any of the BE’s competitors to help them out by supporting such a change, though. Their campaign could actually hurt the B12′s push for the same thing.

      Speaking of which, I like how the B12 has said they are in no hurry to add a CCG even if they do get the rule changed. I’m thinking that hurts their odds of winning.

      http://cfn.scout.com/2/1268404.html

      Bowlsby said Wednesday that proposal is intended to deregulate how conferences are allowed to determine a champion.

      “If that includes a playoff between two high-ranked teams, that’s fine,” Bowlsby said. “If it requires a playoff between the winners of two divisions, that’s fine. But it shouldn’t have to be two six-team divisions. It could be two five-team divisions. It just seems like an obvious place where deregulation makes a lot of sense.”

      So he wants deregulation, but is fine with the rule still requiring divisions. He just wants the number dropped from 12 to 10. That’s not deregulation. It’s just changing the regulations.

      How do all you fans of this proposal feel? Would you support that change? It wouldn’t help with superconferences, just ones with 11 or fewer teams.

      • zeek says:

        But his first proposal allows handling of 15+ conferences really easy.

        If it’s just highest two ranked teams then you can come up with any system you want whether no divisions or 3+ divisions.

        • Brian says:

          Sure, but he doesn’t care if that part gets changed according to his statement. He just wants any conference to be able to form divisions and get the 13th game division.

          • zeek says:

            Ah, but I’d imagine we see something that would satisfy larger conferences as well. It’s not as if the bigger conferences have a stake in helping the Big 12 and Big East.

          • Brian says:

            We might see that. I just wanted to note his hypocrisy. He says it’s about deregulation, but he’s happy if all that changed is the number of teams from 12 to 10.

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        It’s not in the interests of any of the BE’s competitors to help them out by supporting such a change, though. Their campaign could actually hurt the B12′s push for the same thing.

        Other leagues will see their request, and say: “Hmmmm, we might want that ourselves one of these days.” I suspect that will trump the fear that it would allow the Big East to get ahead.

        The mood among NCAA members is deregulatory right now. Obviously, there are exceptions. The “total cost of attendance” rule didn’t pass, because that rule would have hit schools directly in the pocket book. Something more abstract, like revising the rule about which conferences can stage a championship game, has a far less concrete affect on other leagues that choose not to take advantage it.

        So he wants deregulation, but is fine with the rule still requiring divisions. He just wants the number dropped from 12 to 10. That’s not deregulation. It’s just changing the regulations.

        I think you misread him. He’s saying that either method of organizing — a CCG between the two highest-ranked teams, or a CCG between the winners of two five-team divisions — ought to be allowed.

        In sports and just about every other field, the word “deregulation” does not usually mean the complete absence of regulation. It just means “less regulated than it was before.” Dropping the number from 12 to 10 permits everything that was permitted before, and then some.

        Similarly, abolishing the infamous “bagels and cream cheese” rule was described as deregulation. It does not mean that schools can do anything now. It means there’s at least one thing they’re allowed to do, that they weren’t allowed before.

        • ccrider55 says:

          “…revising the rule about which conferences can stage a championship game…”

          You should never decide which conference is allowed to do something. It should be about why the need for, and the method to qualify for, an additional game.

          What is in place is a rule that allows for any conference that chooses to conform to have an extra game to decide the championship. Conferences under 12 are capable of reasonably discovering their champion within the 12 allowed games, with room for OOC games.

          • bullet says:

            Agreed. There is no justification for a ccg for conferences under 12.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            You should never decide which conference is allowed to do something.

            The actual rule, if adopted, would be phrased in a neutral way, without reference to a particular conference. [Having said that, the NCAA rules are rife with individual and case-specific exemptions, such as the rule permitting Johns Hopkins to have a Division I sport in a Division III athletic department.]

            It should be about why the need for, and the method to qualify for, an additional game.

            One might ask why people not in the conference are telling the conference what it supposedly needs. Maybe we ought to let conferences decide their own needs.

            What is in place is a rule that allows for any conference that chooses to conform to have an extra game to decide the championship. Conferences under 12 are capable of reasonably discovering their champion within the 12 allowed games, with room for OOC games.

            Obviously some people don’t think so, or conferences wouldn’t be proposing to change it.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Marc:

            I may be wrong, but isn’t JHU being allowed a grandfather clause? Being allowed to continue under what rules were applicable at the time, not creating a new rule strictly for a few?

            “One might ask why people not in the conference are telling the conference what it supposedly needs”

            They aren’t. The conferences in question are asking for an exception to the 12 game rule. The basis of the request is the difficulty for conferences of twelve (or larger) to reasonably decide a champion without potentially eliminating OOC games. Smaller conferences can request the same relief, and perhaps changing landscape ($$$) will allow for it, but to me it lacks the need part of requesting an exception.

            Conferences proposing the change are not suggesting they are unable to reasonably discover their champion within the 12 allowed games. They simply want to be able to hold a 13th, an extra game, to arrive at an equally (?) viable result.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            “One might ask why people not in the conference are telling the conference what it supposedly needs”

            They aren’t.

            I’m quoting you. You said, “It should be about why the need for . . . an additional game.”

            The conferences in question are asking for an exception to the 12 game rule.

            As I understand it, they aren’t asking for an exception. They are suggesting that the rule itself ought to be altered.

            Conferences proposing the change are not suggesting they are unable to reasonably discover their champion within the 12 allowed games. They simply want to be able to hold a 13th, an extra game, to arrive at an equally (?) viable result.

            I’m not sure if they would put it that way…but yes, in essence, they are saying they would like to have the option of going about it differently. My feeling is, if I am a voter on this rule, my reaction would be: “They’re big boys in the Big XII. Whether I like it or not, and whether I want it in my conference or not, the issue is wholly within their conference, and doesn’t affect me, so let them do as they please.”

          • ccrider55 says:

            Marc:

            Ok, semantics. It’s a rule codifying an exception to the 12 game rule.

            “They are suggesting that the rule itself ought to be altered.”

            And the reason it needs altering?

            “They’re big boys in the Big XII. Whether I like it or not, and whether I want it in my conference or not, the issue is wholly within their conference, and doesn’t affect me, so let them do as they please.”

            1: I’m not sure they are big boys ;)
            2: Rules governing number of allowed games for all the schools is not wholly within each conferences discression.
            3: It will effect me, and others.
            4: I think having, and abiding by rules is preferable to letting “them do as they please.”

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            @ccrider55: “They are suggesting that the rule itself ought to be altered.”

            And the reason it needs altering?

            Wrong question: what’s the reason it ought to persist?

            2: Rules governing number of allowed games for all the schools is not wholly within each conferences discretion.

            In the first place, one might ask: why shouldn’t it be? I mean, at one time conferences weren’t allowed to decide how many games to televise. I remember listening to Michigan-Notre Dame games on the radio, because one school or the other had reached its NCAA-mandated allotment of televised games. A couple of schools actually had to sue to get that dumb rule abolished. Maybe the NCAA isn’t the best qualified party to decide whether your league can play a championship game, just as it wasn’t the best qualified party to decide if your game could be on TV.

            In the second place, one might ask: once you’ve agreed in principle that CCGs are allowed to exist, why constrain which leagues can have them? I know there was a reason, originally. Even the dumb bagels-and-cream-cheese rule had a reason, originally. Times change.

            The expansion of the regular season from 11 to 12 games happened in a similar way. For a while, the 12th game was allowed only under certain limits (an exception, as you put it), hence you had branded games like the Kickoff Classic and the Chick-fil-A classic. Once the sport had concluded that some teams could play a 12th game, it became difficult to justify why all couldn’t play it—so now they do.

            And of course, before the regular season was 11 games, it was 10; and before that it was 9. Every time it expanded, there was someone to say: “Oh, the horror!!!”

            3: It will effect me, and others.

            How?

            4: I think having, and abiding by rules is preferable to letting “them do as they please.”

            Well, to be fair, no one has suggested NOT abiding by rules. Some folks have suggested changing them. Rules change all the time.

          • ccrider55 says:

            “Wrong question: what’s the reason it ought to persist?”

            We should abandon the number of games limit?

            “Maybe the NCAA isn’t the best qualified party to decide whether your league can play a championship game”

            They aren’t. They are allowing an extra game for conferences of certain sizes and larger, to competitively decide a champion, and perscribing how to qualify for that extra game.

            “…once you’ve agreed in principle that CCGs are allowed to exist, why constrain which leagues can have them?”

            You haven’t. You have a set of requirements. Any league that meets them can qualify for a 13th game, to be used as a CCG. There is no requirement that those at or above 12 must avail themselves of this. Only that they have met the threshold, if they so choose. Neither are they prohibiting any conference from using one of the 12 allowed games as a CCG.

            “Well, to be fair, no one has suggested NOT abiding by rules. Some folks have suggested changing them. Rules change all the time.”

            Fair enough. There are wise, unwise, and sometimes downright dumb rules…and rule changes. I appreciate when you call a duck, a duck. Be honest and say you want the benefit of the 13th game without reaching the membership numbers that would make it a competitive necessity to decide a champ.

            (Puts on tinfoil hat): If the 13th is successfully attained, don’t be surprised when an exception to the 13 game limit is created enabling conferences of, oh…say 18 or more to have a 14th weekend for conference semi finals. (Takes off tinfoil hat.)

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            “Wrong question: what’s the reason it ought to persist?”

            We should abandon the number of games limit?

            Thinking out of the box…yes.

            But more specifically, I am reacting to the specific rule change these conferences asked for, which is not a complete elimination of the number-of-games limit.

            “Maybe the NCAA isn’t the best qualified party to decide whether your league can play a championship game”

            They aren’t. They are allowing an extra game for conferences of certain sizes and larger, to competitively decide a champion, and perscribing how to qualify for that extra game.

            We’re into semantics now. They permit leagues to stage a CCG, but only if certain other requirements are met. They could also permit leagues to stage a CCG, and leave the decision entirely up to each league.

            So the intent of my comment was: having permitted a CCG in principle, maybe they aren’t the best qualified party to further circumscribe which leagues can have them.

            You haven’t. You have a set of requirements. Any league that meets them can qualify for a 13th game, to be used as a CCG. There is no requirement that those at or above 12 must avail themselves of this. Only that they have met the threshold, if they so choose. Neither are they prohibiting any conference from using one of the 12 allowed games as a CCG.

            You’re pointing out, as I understand, that leagues have additional options that they have elected not to use. No one would dispute that. The question is why they shouldn’t have the option they actually want.

            Be honest and say you want the benefit of the 13th game without reaching the membership numbers that would make it a competitive necessity to decide a champ.

            It doesn’t seem to me especially true, that these games are competitively necessary in a 12-team league, but serve no competitive purpose in a 10-team league. All of the methods currently in use, or used in the past, are capable of producing highly unsatisfactory results. They also work well, at times.

            (Puts on tinfoil hat): If the 13th is successfully attained, don’t be surprised when an exception to the 13 game limit is created enabling conferences of, oh…say 18 or more to have a 14th weekend for conference semi finals. (Takes off tinfoil hat.)

            I wouldn’t be surprised either, given that the number of games has been increasing for decades.

          • ccrider55 says:

            “The question is why they shouldn’t have the option they actually want.”

            Because it defeats the reasoning and purpose for allowing the 12 game limit exception. If the reason and purpose are no longer necessary, the 12 game limit is gone. Why shouldn’t ND and BYU get a 13th game? They are big boys and should get what they want? Heck, I don’t like the number limit for spring practices, or scholarships, or the value of it, or whether a booster can hire a prospect/player.

            Because they want it just isn’t a credible reason. If they want it and can get the membership to agree, then fine. Just please, stop cloaking it as necessary for a CCG. It’s simply an extra game.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            . . . it defeats the reasoning and purpose for allowing the 12 game limit exception. If the reason and purpose are no longer necessary, the 12 game limit is gone. Why shouldn’t ND and BYU get a 13th game? They are big boys and should get what they want?

            If they want it, then as far as I’m concerned, let them have it.

            But of course, one can draw finer lines here. In 1999, Nebraska and KState tied with 11-1 (7-1) records at the top of the Big XII North. Texas won the South at 9-3 (6-2). All three had played the other two, with each beating one and losing to the other. No team defeated both. Competitively — assuming the game exists at all — Nebraska vs. KState would have been the better match-up; instead, the rule forced them to play the less-satisfactory rematch of Nebraska vs. Texas, which the ‘huskers won easily.

            There was also the notorious 2008 season, when three South teams tied at 11-1 (7-1), each having beaten one of the others. The tie couldn’t have been fully resolved without playing a two-round championship. But without the current NCAA rule, at least two of them could have decided it on the field. Instead, only one did, against a 9-3 (5-3) Missouri team, who got clobbered.

            Heck, I don’t like the number limit for spring practices, or scholarships, or the value of it, or whether a booster can hire a prospect/player.

            There is a difference. The Big XII doesn’t only play Big XII teams. If they give out unlimited scholarships while everyone else gives out 85, then the Big XII has an advantage in games against other leagues. Obviously, the same would be true if the Big XII practiced more than other leagues, or paid its players.

            Here, we are talking about a game that would be played ONLY within the Big XII itself. Moreover, it’s a game the NCAA has no principled objection to, since other leagues play it. That differs, say, from amateurism, which is a bright line that no one is allowed to cross.

            As I noted upthread, the reason we have 12 regular-season games at all, is because some teams were already playing 12, with the Kickoff Classic and similar affairs. Once you have allowed some people to do it, it gets harder to explain the reasons for denying it to others.

          • ccrider55 says:

            “Here, we are talking about a game that would be played ONLY within the Big XII itself.”

            No, they are playing NCAA sanctioned football with rules that govern all equally.

            “Moreover, it’s a game the NCAA has no principled objection to, since other leagues play it.”

            And they have no objection to a CCG in smaller conferences, and in any manner they choose (KSU v Neb if you like) as long as its done within the 12 allowed. The principled objection is “because we want to” doesn’t trump the rules, and why they were generated.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            “Here, we are talking about a game that would be played ONLY within the Big XII itself.”

            No, they are playing NCAA sanctioned football with rules that govern all equally.

            That part is disputed by no one. I was explaining the reason why this isn’t the same as allowing everyone unlimited scholarships. It was a response to that particular point. No one has suggested that the Big XII would play a game the rules don’t allow.

            “Moreover, it’s a game the NCAA has no principled objection to, since other leagues play it.”

            And they have no objection to a CCG in smaller conferences, and in any manner they choose (KSU v Neb if you like) as long as its done within the 12 allowed.

            We’re in semantics again. The thing they have no principled objection to, is a CCG after 12 regular-season games have been played. This is in distinction to the rules against paying player salaries, or the rules requiring all players to wear helmets, which are absolute and have no exceptions.

            The principled objection is “because we want to” doesn’t trump the rules, and why they were generated.

            Actually, “because we want to” is an excellent reason. We live in a capitalist society. Our bias is to let people do as they please, and let the marketplace decide which ideas are best. When you tell someone, “you can’t do it that way,” you need a valid reason, and it needs to remain valid, not merely to have been valid at some point in the past.

            The trend in the NCAA is de-regulatory: I’m sure you saw the news stories when a bunch of rules were abolished. They are starting to realize that they had regulated too much.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Well we’ll just have to agree to disagree. We already see backlash from schools and coaches regarding the deregulation of recruiting rules. They know the negatives, and want someone to tell them they can’t do what they don’t want to but will have no choice to do, or be at a disadvantage.

            Stricter regs on over signing would be welcomed by many.

            I agree that the schools getting selected to play in preseason may have promoted the move to 12. But that came long after the extra game exception was created and is completely unrelated. You advance to a CCG be winning a division. You got into a kick off classic or whatever through a uncompetitive selection process.

            Invite Rice and Houston back, and hold a CCG by the same rules everyone else does :) .

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            @ccrider55: Thanks for the civil dialogue (not always a given here).

            You are right that some schools and coaches disagree with some of the new rules. Remember, the Big Ten coaches voted unanimously against the ninth conference game, and look at where it got them. Almost every rule is probably supported by someone. I’m just pointing out that the trend right now is de-regulatory. And bear in mind: recruiting rules affect everyone, whereas a CCG affects only the league choosing to play it.

            Right now, the NCAA has approval ratings only slightly better than Congress. It’s built on enough hypocrisy to fill a book as large as its own antiquated rule book. No school yet has told the NCAA to go ____ itself, though some are starting to talk about it.

            Invite Rice and Houston back, and hold a CCG by the same rules everyone else does.

            Which is exactly why I think the amendment will pass. The bottom-feeder leagues would rather not give the Big XII another reason to expand. Obviously, they’d probably rather take two ACC schools; but then the ACC would take two Big East schools, and the BE would take two C-USA schools, and C-USA would take…I don’t know who, but you get the idea.

            None of these leagues want to be telling the Big XII, “You’ve got to get bigger.”

          • Brian says:

            Marc,

            You know your reading of the rule is idiosyncratic. You’ll never convince anyone to change their mind on this issue and vice versa so please stop bringing up this same fight about what the rule does or doesn’t do.

            As the cherry on top of the B12′s stupid crusade on this, they don’t even want to stage this CCG. Bowlsby said they wouldn’t rush to have it even if they do get the rule changed because not everyone rakes in money for having one. That tells me there’s no reason to change the rule to allow a 10 team conference to have a CCG.

        • Brian says:

          Marc Shepherd,

          “Other leagues will see their request, and say: “Hmmmm, we might want that ourselves one of these days.” I suspect that will trump the fear that it would allow the Big East to get ahead.”

          Most of their competitors already have 12 teams. What is their incentive? If they want the change later, they can vote for it then. It only hurts them now.

          “The mood among NCAA members is deregulatory right now.”

          Not necessarily. They want to drop some rules in areas they feel are over regulated. That doesn’t mean they want to deregulate across the board as you note. So why jump to the conclusion that this is an area they want to change?

          “Something more abstract, like revising the rule about which conferences can stage a championship game,”

          I’m not having that argument again. That is NOT what the rule does. It says what you need to do to qualify for a 13th game exemption for a CCG.

          “has a far less concrete affect on other leagues that choose not to take advantage it.”

          Helping the competition hurts you. That’s very concrete.

          “I think you misread him.”

          No, that’s exactly what he said. He’s fine if the only change is to drop the number from 12 to 10. He’s also fine if it changes more, but that doesn’t change my point.

          “He’s saying that either method of organizing — a CCG between the two highest-ranked teams, or a CCG between the winners of two five-team divisions — ought to be allowed.”

          No, he isn’t. He said he’s fine either way. It’s a quote. Re-read it.

          “If it requires a playoff between the winners of two divisions, that’s fine. But it shouldn’t have to be two six-team divisions. It could be two five-team divisions.”

          “In sports and just about every other field, the word “deregulation” does not usually mean the complete absence of regulation. It just means “less regulated than it was before.” Dropping the number from 12 to 10 permits everything that was permitted before, and then some.”

          Changing the number is not deregulating. It’s changing the regulation.

  54. bamatab says:

    The InsideMDSports guy is now “clarifying” what he is hearing in regards to UNC on twitter.

    Jeff Ermann ‏@insidemdsports
    The #SEC also remains a viable option for #UNC. Legit mutual interest, per multiple sources. Heels a crown jewel of the realignment picture.

    Jeff Ermann ‏@insidemdsports
    Seems to be some confusion. So it’s clear, I’ve reported nothing to the effect that UNC is Big 10-bound; just that Big 10 wants the Heels.

    https://twitter.com/insidemdsports

    • Andy says:

      “legit mutual interest” between UNC and the SEC? But people said on here that was not possible.

      • BruceMcF says:

        Legit mutual interest between UNC and the SEC is certainly possible. Pointing out that it would be slumming as far as BBall and academics goes does not mean there is no interest from some UNC stakeholders in he move.

        As far as the people who say that the drop in academic and BBall standards is so profound that those pushing for a move to the SEC will in the end by frustrated … I dunno. That’s not the part of SEC-land that I lived in for six years.

        • Andy says:

          SEC basketball could potentiall include: Kentucky – 8 national titles, 52 NCAAs, UNC – 5 national titles, 51 NCAAs, Duke – 4 national titles, 32 NCAAs, Florida – 2 national titles, 17 NCAAs, Arkansas – 1 national title, 29 NCAAs, Missouri – 25 NCAAs, Alabama – 20 NCAAs, LSU – 20 NCAAs, Tennessee – 19 NCAAs.

          Not exactly a wasteland.

          An SEC with UNC and Duke would include 6 AAU schools and a total research budget of over $5B. Not as good as the B1G but solid, and not that far from the Pac 12. Comfortably ahead of the rest.

          • BruceMcF says:

            Are any of those laurels getting a bit dry and dusty? Looking at that you’d not expect the SEC to be a three bid conference ~ yet here we are, and a three bid SEC would surprise nobody.

          • m (Ag) says:

            Yes, SEC basketball isn’t good this year, and the average quality isn’t normally as good as the Big Ten. But an SEC team is the CURRENT NCAA CHAMPION. How is that ‘dry and dusty?’

            If Duke and UNC had joined the SEC this year, the SEC would have 6 of the last 8 NCAA basketball champions. SEC schools would be almost as successful in producing titles in basketball as in football!

            (I admit, I’m not a basketball guy, and had to look up the list of recent champs on wikipedia to get the exact numbers, but even I knew the SEC has many more recent ‘laurels’ than the Big Ten.)

          • Joe says:

            man, shut up. you’re opinions are so slanted and asinine. no one gives a f’ what you think.

          • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

            Bruce – over the last ten years, the three SEC teams (UK, UF & LSU) have made five appearances in the Final Four, winning three NCs. Over that same time three B1G teams (Illinois, Ohio St & Mich St) have made six appearances in the Final Four, winning ZERO NCs.

            The SEC is not as deep as the B1G, but the SEC has collected more hardware.

          • Andy says:

            Alan is exactly right. The top few teams in the SEC are as good or better on average than the top teams in any other conference. The problem is depth. The lower level SEC basketball programs need to improve. But certainly with UNC and Duke the SEC would have 7 or 8 very solid basketball programs, which is more than most any other league could say.

          • gfunk says:

            Bottom line, SEC has 6 NCAA Men’s Basketball Championships in the modern era, twice as many as the BIG. Sure, the BIG has better depth and more FF’s, but as a BIG fan over the years, it’s quite obvious the conference has choked in NCG’s – 6 of the last 7 appearances: The Phantom 5 (92 & 93), IU (2002), MSU (2009), OSU (2007), and Illinois (2005).

            I tell you all this expansion craze would be easier for the BIG had they won more NCG’s in football & basketball than lost. Perennial runners up don’t help the cause, thus too often BIG fans have to resort to money and academic prestige arguments with their fantasy expansion scenarios. I don’t like it, such talk looks snobby and sometimes desperate (shifting demographics to the South, we need the recruits – btw, not the case with basketball at all). People fail to realize that football is incredible in many southern states and Tx because of shared and maintained culture – like Chicago hoops or Minnesota hockey. Culture can always change.

            I’d rather see the conference win more NC’s in these particular sports, esp basketball. Very tired of seeing so many great basketball recruits leave the footprint. Winning football NC’s, doesn’t bother me as much because there has never been a playoff – when the day finally comes the SEC will never have a run like the past 7 years – justice through parity will prevail. Book it!

          • zeek says:

            Right now, the SEC only has two consistently elite teams that have virtually carried the entire conference since Arkansas was good in the mid-90s.

            Over the past 15 years, outside of Florida and Kentucky, only LSU can claim a single Final Four appearance.

            That’s it.

            The Big Ten on the other hand has had like 6 or 7 teams reach the Final Four in that time frame with Michigan State and Ohio State each reaching a handful along with 5 different teams in the national championship game over the past 11 years.

            You can’t even compare the two conferences. Michigan State is as elite as Florida and Indiana is as elite as Kentucky.

            Going beyond that the Big Ten also has Maryland now (championship in 2002 and Final Four in 2001).

            You can’t claim with a straight face that SEC basketball has been anything outside of Florida and Kentucky over the past 15 years. They’re carrying that entire conference.

          • zeek says:

            Alan, that’s an interesting cutoff date of 10 years ago.
            Michigan State and Ohio State both reached 1999 Final Four
            Michigan State was the 2000 champion and Wisconsin reached the 2000 Final Four
            Michigan State and Maryland reached the 2001 Final Four
            Maryland won the 2002 championship and Indiana was the runner-up.

          • mushroomgod says:

            Andy–Don’t forget Missouri——the 1939 Omaha Holiday Tourney champs……..

          • Michael in Raleigh says:

            @gfunk,

            Make that 7 of the last 8 NCG appearances. Michigan State lost the ’09 final to UNC.

          • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

            zeek – I was responding to Bruce’s question, “Are any of those laurels getting a bit dry and dusty?”

            Are you really arguing that 10 years isn’t a round, fair, commonly used number to examine recent history? If I had used 11 or 13, I could see your argument, but 10? Come on, zeek.

          • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

            zeek – you shouldn’t give the B1G credit for Maryland’s success in the ACC from 11 and 12 years ago, especially since they aren’t even a member of the B1G yet.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            The SEC is not as deep as the B1G, but the SEC has collected more hardware.

            Depth brings more revenue, though.

          • zeek says:

            Alan, my point is this; if you compare a 14 team Big Ten to a 14 team SEC; here’s what you’re looking at:

            Big Ten has 7 or 8 teams that you can reasonably think will get to a Final Four in the next 10 years.

            SEC has 2 along with Arkansas and LSU having history in the sport (but I’m not sure what their current potential is).

          • bullet says:

            SEC has always been underrated in basketball. But there has been a slump the last 3 or 4 years. The Pac 12 has had a bigger slump. And the Big 10 has had a similar slump in a similar time frame in football. That doesn’t mean its permanent.

          • Andy says:

            As I showed a few posts up, there’s more ways to count depth than just national titles. NCAA appearances are also a decent measure. In the theoretical scenario of UNC and Duke to the SEC and UVA and GT to the B1G, the SEC would have:

            Kentucky 52
            UNC 51
            Duke 36
            Arkansas 29
            Missouri 25
            Alabama 20
            LSU 20
            Tennessee 19
            Florida 17
            Vanderbilt 13
            Texas A&M 12
            Mississippi State 10
            Georgia 10
            Auburn 8
            South Carolina 8
            Mississippi 6

            Indiana 36
            Illinois 29
            Michigan State 26
            Purdue 25
            Ohio State 24
            Maryland 23
            Iowa 22
            Michigan 19
            Wisconsin 18
            Virginia 17
            Georgia Tech 16
            Penn State 9
            Rutgers 6
            Minnesota 6
            Nebraska 6
            Northwestern 0

            By that measure the SEC would actually be the stronger basketball conference historically. I’m pretty sure they’d lead in national titles, final fours, and NCAA apperances, and at least as far as NCAA appearances the historical depth would be better as well.

          • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

            zeek – since re-alignment got kicked off in 1992, five SEC schools (UK, UF, Ark, LSU & Miss St) made 14 FF appearances and won 6 titles. In the same time, and counting Maryland, eight B1G schools (Ill, Ind, MD, MI, Sparty, MN, OSU & WI) have made 18 FF appearances and won 2 titles.

            I don’t dispute that the B1G is deeper, but the SEC is more successful in acquiring hardware. Three different SEC teams (UK – 12, 98 & 96; UF – 07 & 06; and Ark -94) have won six titles. During that time, only Sparty won a title in 2000. Future B1G member Maryland did win it all in 02.

            Recently, A&M, LSU, Vandy South Carolina, Bama, Tennessee, and Miss State have been competitive, but not consistent. Mizzou has been consistently good, but has underachieved in the tournament.

            It all depends on how you measure success. If depth is how you measure success, the B1G wins, but its closer than one might think.

            LSU and Alabama have good young coaches that can recruit and will get better. Vandy graduated everybody from last year, so there are really bad this year. Ole Miss is making moves in a positive direction and should make the NCAAs this year. Recent football success has eclipsed everything in the conference though, in spite of SEC schools hiring successful young coaches and paying competitive salaries.

            My Tigers are on the way back and should be a consistent tournament team within the next few years. First year coach Johnny Jones is an LSU grad and Dale Brown disciple, having played and coached for him. Louisiana produces some good basketball talent. Johnny was hired for his recruiting prowess, but we have all been pleasantly surprised that he appears to be a pretty good bench coach as well. Look for good things from my Tigers in the future.

          • @Andy- You might want to re-check your NCAA appearance numbers. I didn’t go through them all, but you’ve got a slew of errors. Here are the correct NCAA appearances for a few of them. I also include Final 4s for these schools:

            Michigan—23 and 6 Final 4s
            OSU——–28 and 11 Final 4s
            Purdue—–26 and 2 Final 4s
            Minnesota-11 and 1 Final 4

            Also, your list while impressive looking when you add UNC and Duke when you remove them you’re left w/ a decent list of teams. But, decent is about all they are. The SEC has a grand total of 1 team (Kentucky) in the top 20 of all-time wins. The B1G has 3. The B1G is better than the SEC in hoops at the top, in the middle and at the bottom.

          • Andy says:

            Lobills, got my numbers here, I assum they’re fairly accurate, maybe off by a little?

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NCAA_Men's_Division_I_Tournament_bids_by_school

          • Andy says:

            Also, Lobills, I agree that the B1G is better than the SEC in basketball right now. I’m just saying add UNC and Duke and the two leagues are similar and the SEC might even be a little better. Basically the SEC is 2 good programs shy of equalling the B1G in basketball. Their only real shot at evening it up would be to add UNC and Duke.

          • @Andy- They aren’t that far off. Most just by 1. Minnesota was the big one 6 vs. 11. No biggie.

          • gfunk says:

            @ Michaeil in Raleigh,

            Re-read my post – I counted 2009 MSU (second place). Of course I did, that’s my program. I said 6 of 7 because we won it in 2000. I broke down the second place finishes per year, per school. But yeah, again, the BIG is a stellar 1-7 in basketball NCGs since 1992. Unacceptable.

          • BruceMcF says:

            @ Alan ~ While its mostly the current season with the SEC sitting in the Sagarin rankings down among the better Mid-Majors that I’m needling Andy about, because he’s such an over the top SEC spin merchant ~ and the SEC was surely one of the Major basketball conferences when I was in Knoxville in the early 90′s ~ the success of Florida and the success of Kentucky’s one and done teams have distracted from a conference slump that is more than just a one year thing.

          • BruceMcF says:

            Andy: “I’m just saying add UNC and Duke and the two leagues are similar and the SEC might even be a little better.”

            So if you unspin it, “we’re not as good as the Big Ten, so we’re close enough that if you join us, it will help us catch up!”

            When the Big Ten’s pitch includes, “Join us and the Big Ten will be the strongest basketball conference both when you join and over the long haul”.

          • Andy says:

            BruceMcF, it’s funny how bias can taint the brain. I’m an “over the top SEC spin merchant” because I make posts that reflect positivley of the SEC that I’m careful to be accurate and modest in, and readily admit to the SEC’s faults, and that comes accross to you and being a “spin merchant”. Okay. I’d love to see any example ever of me exaggerating anything at all in favor of the SEC. I’m 99.9% sure I haven’t.

            You on the other hand admit in the very same post that you are exagerating to an indefeninsible level merely to “needle me”. So who’s the “spin merchant” again? Projecting much?

          • Andy says:

            How on earth is is “spin” if I say (direct quote): “Basically the SEC is 2 good programs shy of equalling the B1G in basketball. Their only real shot at evening it up would be to add UNC and Duke.”

            Maybe your definition of the word “spin” is wildly different from mine. But in my world if I were spinning I wouldn’t be that honest, modest, and straightforward.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Example: “I’d love to see any example ever of me exaggerating anything at all in favor of the SEC. I’m 99.9% sure I haven’t.”

            Sorry, couldn’t help it. I’m done.

          • Andy says:

            Yes, that was an exaggeration, but not in favor of the SEC. I do engage in semantical exaggerations at times for emphasis. It is part of my conversational style. But I don’t spin or exagerate facts. The truth is plenty good enough.

          • Stephen says:

            So if you add two top-5 basketball programs of all time, which happen to both be academic powerhouses as well, then the leagues will be close to equal? That is a pretty weak argument for the SEC.

            That’s like telling Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy that if they join your golf team you will be about as good and popular as the next best team.

          • Andy says:

            The SEC already has the #1 winningest basketball program of all time, and another that has won 2 national titles in recent years, and 5 programs in the top 40 all-time in NCAA appearances. So no, it’s not like that. As I said, they just need a couple more top level programs to match the Big Ten. As it is they’re a couple programs behind. Not trying to spin anything.

          • Stephen says:

            Andy, you do more spinning than a washing machine.

          • Andy says:

            oh no you di’int!

      • frug says:

        I don’t think anyone said it was not possible. They just thought UNC would prefer the Big Ten.

      • cutter says:

        Perhaps in your mind, Andy.

        The overall opinion here has always been that North Carolina could go either way regarding the Big Ten and the SEC. We’re aware of the discussions about Slive having targeted UNC and Duke for the SEC and we’re certainly aware of Delany’s interest. UNC is likely going to be pulled both ways and with the SEC Network due to ramp up early next year, having a presence in the states North Carolina and Virginia would be a logical step for the SEC to take.

        At this point, we’re discussing the merits, pros and cons of North Carolina going in one conference or the other. Both can make a case and I suspect the leadership in Chapel Hill are going to have an interesting decision to make in due course. They can stay in the ACC under the current television contract and try to maintain 28 sports with an athletic department that essentially has no net revenue or move to another conference–B1G or SEC–and become part of the first super conference in major college athletics.

        • Andy says:

          certainly there have been a few reasonable posts like the one you just made, but the unreasonable ones have not been only “in my mind”. There have been a ton of dismissive posts about how UNC would never go to the SEC. I’m not sure how you missed them.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            @Andy: You’re right that there are a lot of dismissive posts, and there shouldn’t be. But aren’t you the king of dismissive posts? As in this bon mot “all I see here are a bunch of bored B1G fans in a circle jerk.”

          • cutter says:

            Perhaps because I have the wisdom to dismiss them as not being noteworthy?

            I mean, seriously, if you want to stomp your feet about the dynamics of a message board and how people will throw their opinions into a discussion with small knowledge, then be my guest. By and large, I find most people who are regular contributors on this board have generally thought out their responses and have something to back them up. I might not agree with the conclusions, but I often find some merit in them. I’ll leave the simple scorn up to you.

          • Andy says:

            wait, so I should not engage with or disagree with the multitudes of ignorant and imbicilic posts on here because a few of them are reasonable? okay…

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            …so I should not engage with or disagree with the multitudes of ignorant and imbicilic…

            I see very few ignorant and imbecilic posts here. Actually, the combined intelligence of this board is remarkable—certainly much more than the fan boards of specific schools, including my own. A lot of the comments you dismiss as “ignorant” and “imbecilic” are pretty smart, or are at least reasonable, which is not the same thing as saying we agree with them.

          • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

            Marc, the best course of action at this point is to stop feeding the troll.

          • Andy says:

            ok, marc, not that many imbicilic posts. but plenty that are naive and fantastical and wildly unrealistic.

          • Andy says:

            Scarlet, so I’m the troll, huh? I make a perfectly sane and reasonable post and a bunch of loony toon fruitcakes gang up on me. I guess that makes me a troll.

    • zeek says:

      He sounds like he’s spent the whole day backtracking now.

  55. Quiet Storm says:

    Here is the SBJ article on ESPN matching NBC’s offer. http://www.sportsbusinessdaily.com/Daily/Closing-Bell/2013/02/21/Big-East.aspx

    • Mack says:

      I expected this. ESPN will not only keep this inventory away from NBC, but will make a tidy profit reselling it thanks to NBC’s low offer.

      • Brian says:

        The BE has yet to approve. ESPN matched the money but the BE still has to decide if they matched the coverage. More games on lesser channels could mean the BE says no.

  56. Pablo says:

    Is it possible that the talk about expanding to 18 or 20 teams is merely a rouse, meant to keep the realignment discussion going? Obviously, UVa and UNC would feel more comfortable jumping conferences if they could bring along their best rivalries.

    From UVa’s perspective…UNC, VT and Duke are important rivalries; discussions about GT and FSU provide cover from concerns that the B1G would be too foreign for a southern school. A potential expansion to 20 teams allows all these schools to be considered. The dream scenario for UVa-to-the-B1G would be:
    South pod- UVa/VT/UNC/GT/FSU
    East pod- UMD/Duke/NW/Rutg/PSU
    North pod- UM/MSU/OSU/IN/Pur
    West pod- MN/WI/IL/IA/NB
    It’s easier to contemplate a shift in conferences when rivalries and traditions can be maintained.

    • vp19 says:

      From 1936 to 2004, Virginia Tech and Virginia were not in the same conference. (UVa left the Southern Conference in ’36, while Tech remained; the Gobblers were not invited to the new ACC in 1953, and UVa accepted an invitation that December.) I have no doubt the Cavs would still play Tech in all sports as a Big Ten member.

      • HT1138 says:

        Speaking as a Virginia Tech alumnus and fan, whether or not UVA and VT play in football isn’t the issue (It’s only been an annual game since 1970). The issue is, and has been since the 2003 ACC expansion saga, whether or not the governor and state legislature will allow UVA to financially harm VT by weakening their conference’s television product. Virginia isn’t Texas. The state government isn’t concerned with the on field product of it’s universities. They’re concerned about the financial impact at two of the state’s top three public universities (William & Mary competes at the FCS level and therefore isn’t part of the football money equation).

      • Pablo says:

        I have some understanding of the history of ‘Hoos v Gobblers rivalry.

        Nevertheless, the passion has really grown during the past 8 years. With both teams in the ACC competing for the same championships, it has become much more fun during games. Even though VT is still dominating in the football series, there is more excitement.

        If UVa gets an invitation from the B1G, I’d be stunned if VT also gets one. VT has made the ACC a much better athletic conference. If VT needs to flee the ACC, then their cultural DNA is much more suited to the SEC.

        • HT1138 says:

          I agree that, should the ACC become unstable, VT would be betters suited for the SEC. However, it’s still a big assumption that if UVA were to go to the B1G, VT gets a quick invite to the SEC. If the SEC were to decide to stay at 14 even if the B1G expands, that would leave VT stranded in a weakened ACC and UVA would have done the same thing the state refused to allow them to do in 2003. That’s the point I was trying to make. While continuing the on field rivalry is nice. It wouldn’t be a priority for the state.. The financial implications of VT being left behind in a weakened ACC would be.

    • Brian says:

      Pablo,

      A ruse by whom and for what purpose? Who can get that many people in on a ruse and not have any leaks? Is the ruse supposed to fool the fans or the schools? How would they deal with the backlash when it’s revealed to be a ruse?

      If the B10 doesn’t want to go past 14, they don’t gain from any more talk. If they want 16, I don’t see how they gain from talking about 20. It will set false expectations and lead to hurt feelings.

      • metatron says:

        Because some schools (Notre Dame) have reservations about joining larger conferences. Sixteen in manageable (somewhat), but twenty is unwieldy.

      • Pablo says:

        A ruse by the B1G PTB to help shake lose UVa and / or UNC. It’s easier for these schools to start serious discussions about moving if there is a possibility of a mass movement. Eventually a couple of the desirable targets may jump.

        A 20 school conference seems risky. Larry Scott seems like a visionary risk taker. Jim Delaney and the B1G presidents…not so much.

        • Brian says:

          Pablo,

          “A ruse by the B1G PTB to help shake lose UVa and / or UNC. It’s easier for these schools to start serious discussions about moving if there is a possibility of a mass movement. Eventually a couple of the desirable targets may jump.”

          So first they anger the B10 fans that don’t want to expand, especially to the south. Then they upset the ACC fans of multiple schools by suggesting their team may join the B10. Then they tell the fans of the 2 schools selected that it’s even worse because you’re actually only bringing 1 neighbor instead of the rumored 3 or 5.

          How is that helpful? TPTB at the ACC schools will know the truth. Are they in on this plan to lie to their fan bases? Why aren’t they leaking the truth?

        • BruceMcF says:

          @ Pablo: Nothing they’ve ever said has indicated they’ll decide to go to 20 and then look for the best schools they can find. And “20 is a possibility” and “some people think 20 is where it ends up” is perfectly compatible with only going to 20 if the schools are available that makes it worthwhile.

          With the “right” schools, its substantially less risky than with the “wrong” schools.

          AND, with any luck, disagreement over who the right schools are and/or unavailability of the schools required to justify going to 20 will keep it from happening.

    • cutter says:

      Are Syracuse, Boston College and Pittsburgh “foreign” when it comes to the schools of the ACC located south of the Potomac River? What about Louisville?

      I do agree with you that if a number of schools make the jump together, it might be an easier transition for them. We’ve had the AD at Georgia Tech and some of the lacrosse coaches in the ACC talk about how Virginia, North Carolina, Duke and Georgia Tech form a subset within the conference, so the idea of them going together has some plausibility. That’s why one scenario discussed on this board is a move from 14 to 18 rather than 14 to 16.

      You’re correct in thinking that they could go in a pod together as part of a 20-team setup. We might have differences in how you’d put together your pods, but what you’re proposing isn’t to far fetched (perhaps outside of having Northwestern in the East pod with Maryland, Duke, Rutgers and Penn State).

      As far as this being a ruse, I don’t see what anyone who is a serious stakeholder in this has to gain from playing games about expansion.

      • Pablo says:

        Cutter,

        It will take years to evaluate how well Syracuse, Pittsburgh and Louisville assimilate to the ACC. My guess is that they will appreciate the familiarity of a few ex-Big East schools that have paved the way. The mere fact that all three excel in hoops (although that is not reason they joined) makes them not ‘foreign’ to the ACC.

        With regards to Boston College, I do believe that they still feel somewhat out of place. The Mason-Dixon Line was the old geographic limit of the ACC, BC stretched the old boundary by a lot and has never fully fit-in. They’ve had no geographic partner, they’ve dominated in hockey ( a sport no other ACC school supports), they’re the lone Catholic school with an overwhelming undergraduate focus (even Wake, with its small enrollment has some research cred). Now that Syracuse and Notre Dame are joining the ACC, BC will be able to renew better rivalries.

        With regards to UVa in the B1G, I believe that southern culture is something that Virginia is very proud and interested in maintaining. It is easier to not feel like an outlier, when you are amongst schools with similar traditions.

        • Brian says:

          Pablo,

          “With regards to UVa in the B1G, I believe that southern culture is something that Virginia is very proud and interested in maintaining. It is easier to not feel like an outlier, when you are amongst schools with similar traditions.”

          How many schools does it take to make you feel comfortable, though? For a long time, UVA had 5 neighbors in the ACC (MD, 4 in NC). While southern, I’m not sure how similar WF, Duke and UVA really are. In addition, UVA’s academics means it looks down on NCSU. So are we really talking about MD and UNC? One is already in the B10 and the other is often rumored as the partner for UVA. How out of place would an elite state flagship and research university with a strong non-revenue sports program feel in the B10 with MD and UNC? They’ll still play VT OOC, so they don’t lose that. GT is also a rumored partner and is in their division for FB. So are Pitt and Miami. Replacing Pitt with PSU is an improvement, right?

          My point is, the ACC isn’t what it used to be. The differences UVA would face now aren’t as large as they would have been 10 years ago. If they are in a conference with BC, Syracuse and Pitt, the culture shock of being in the B10 just can’t be that bad.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          It will take years to evaluate how well Syracuse, Pittsburgh and Louisville assimilate to the ACC. . . . With regards to Boston College, I do believe that they still feel somewhat out of place.

          Relative to what? There’s practically zero chance that these schools would ever say, “This was a mistake. We should have stayed in the Big East.”

          It’s a different story when you start talking about the ACC founder schools, who have genuine, sentimental attachment to the league they created together. Joining another conference would mean giving something up that they actually care about.

          • bullet says:

            If the ACC implodes, Pitt and SU will likely be left in a worse situation than if they were in the BE with the C7 and a $14 million a year contract.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            I was referring to the earlier comment about their “assimilation” into the new league, not the scenario where that league ceases to exist at all.

      • Pablo says:

        btw – it’s true that neither Northwestern nor Duke get a fair shake in my football alignment…but at least those schools have large shares of their student body from the northeast. Also, neither school is a football power. Most importantly, it allows the other 3 divisions to be geographically compact while balancing the football powers.

  57. skeptic says:

    if UNC joined the B10, was able to flip all pay tv households in NC from “out of footprint” to “in footprint” BTN fees, and was the only school to come from the state, it still couldn’t cover the extra share of revenues they would command. (so no way can NC cover 2 shares, were Duke to come too).

    nor can RU, (without NYC, which isn’t happening even with YES), nor can UMd, (even with DC), nor can UVa.

    and FSU can’t cover without flipping the entire state, which also ain’t happening.

    and GT could maybe flip metro Atlanta, but that’s about all.

    U Texas is the only school even remotely mentioned that could be even a possible financial plus for legacy schools, and they ain’t happening.

    expansion is a big plus for News Corp, (News Corp is the big winner in all this), but a financial net loss for legacy schools, once you figure in the added shares.

    think i’m wrong, then show me the math to prove it.

    figure the pay tv households in a given state that take at least an expanded basic level of service. (figure 85% of total census households),

    then figure the added revenue if you can flip the entire state from “out of footprint” to “in footprint” fees. (assuming you can flip the state).

    here are a few articles that reference in footprint and out of footprint BTN sub fees

    http://www.multichannel.com/content/tv-rights-pacts-distribution-deals-could-follow-dominos-college-sports-conference-realignmen

    http://www.sportsbusinessdaily.com/Journal/Issues/2012/12/10/Media/BigTenNet.aspx

    http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2012/writers/andy_staples/11/19/maryland-big-ten-realignment/index.html

    the Multichannel News article says 70 plus cents per sub per mo in footprint, 10 cents out of footprint

    the Street & Smith’s Sports Business Journal quotes 80 cents per sub per mo in footprint, 15 cents out of footprint.

    the SI article says $1.10 in footprint, (which i think is way high as an average, but go with it anyway if you wish), and 10 cents out of footprint.

    remember, you’re only using the difference between the in and out of footprint fees to figure the gain from flipping a state, not the full in footprint fee.

    add in about 12% of fee revenues for estimated ad revenues.

    then subtract out News Corp’s split. (figure 50%)

    then see if you can cover a $24 plus mil current worth of a share.

    good luck finding a credible target school that even comes close to covering an extra share of the B10 revenue pie.

    easy to show expansion as a net gain for the league as a whole, but not for the legacy schools once you figure in the extra shares.

    so why can’t they cover, when they bring more tvs and more markets?

    because the current B10 isn’t 12 schools with a 9 state revenue model.

    it’s 12 schools with a 50 state revenue model.

    even though revenues are higher in the footprint states, the B10 still has a strong presence and revenues from the other 41 states as well. (and folks in every state already get those same Disney B10 games that folks in the midwest get).

    an expansion school can only incrementally increase revenues within their state.

    they can’t significantly raise revenues outside their state.

    it’s the revenues that the league already gets from the other 41 states, tier 1 and 2, that keeps expansion schools from being able to cover a full share of the pie.

    again, if you think i’m wrong, show me the math.

    don’t just say i’m wrong because i must be. (maybe i am wrong, but i require evidence of that).

    and don’t just speculate that everything will be fixed when we re-negotiate everything.

    so why is this all happening?

    good question, and i’m guessing a pretty interesting discussion could be had on that topic.

    • ccrider55 says:

      Fire Delaney now! Sheesh. And the COP/C too! He does their bidding and its obvious they have no clue. Idiots, all!

      Oh wait…which conference is the richest and academically strongest and has the most envied (and now copied) media innovation?

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      @skeptic: You’ve proven you know how to use google. Gold star. The thing is, the university presidents do too — or they have professional staffs that do it for them. Making money for his bosses is practically the only thing Jim Delany is paid to do, and so far he has never failed at it.

      So, you’re asking me to believe that suddenly he is doing his damndest to lose money for them, a fact readily proven through elementary use of google? Yeah, right.

      • Phil says:

        I think it’s a bit disingenuous to call out the additions for not paying for themselves when the B1G has made the conscious (and smart) decision to NOT reopen their ABC/ESPN deal so that they can get to the open market as soon as possible.

        Even then, I have read that the $24mm figure you cited involved multiple sources of revenue and the TV income was more like $18mm (11-ESPN, 7-BTN).

        Using the conservative figure of 2.5mm NJ cable households, an $0.80 average of your “in footprint” gains, 12% for advertising and a 50% split with Fox, gets you to the estimate of Rutgers bringing approximately $13.5mm in additional BTN revenue to the conference just by capturing New Jersey.

        That’s not too far from $18mm considering:

        -We are counting the non-NJ part of the NYC DMA as $0 when we are hopeful that with Fox leveraging the YES network the number will be well north of that.
        -We are counting the 6-7 home games Rutgers brings to Big Ten control as $0 when that will be monetized for some number of millions in the next deal.
        -The demographics in the northeast are such that the BTN network should be able to get more for advertising in these markets than they currently average.

    • BuckeyeBeau says:

      @ Skeptic: lots of interesting questions, but I would have preferred YOU doing a bit of math and research. I also think you are missing a lot of components of the B1G’s annual revenue. The BTN’s piece of the revenue is about $7-8m currently.

      Per Zeek above on the Board.

      *****

      “zeek says:
      February 21, 2013 at 11:06 am

      Maybe I misunderstood what you were asking, but the answer is that the $2.8 billion over 25 years (or $112 million per year) that you’re asking about includes rights fees and profit distributions.

      The $7.9 million per school in 2011 and $7.2 million per school in 2012 include both as well.”

      ****

      The short of it: I don’t the extra cable fees have to add up to $24m a year; only about $8m.

      I am intrigued, so I’ll take up the challenge and take a look at North Carolina.

      http://www.tvb.org/media/file/Cable_UEs_by_State.pdf

      According to TVB dot org, NC has 2,084,400 cable households (“CHH”)

      For ease of math, let’s use the Sports Illustrated numbers for “in-footprint” vs. “out-of-footprint” so we get an extra dollar per CCH per month. I’ll round down: 2m x $1.00 x 12 = $24m

      Let’s do 10% for ad revenue (again for ease of math) and we now have $26.4m. Divide by two = $13.2m for the BTN.

      So, it looks like the extra cable fees from the State of North Carolina would pay for UNC’s share of the BTN revenue distribution to the B1G. Indeed, the extra cable fees would almost pay for both Duke and UNC.

      • @BuckeyeBeau – Interesting data there about cable households by state and I wonder if your estimate is even undercounting the impact. When looking at that chart, I don’t believe that they’re including satellite providers such as DirecTV, which accounts for the wide variances in percentages between states. I know that overall cable network penetration is around 90% of households across the country, they’re missing a lot of households that are getting satellite services instead of traditional hardlines cable. The number for each state that we should probably use is 90% of the total TV households figure. In the case of NC, that would be 3,375,000 cable and satellite households. At $1.00 per month per household, that would be $40,500,000 extra per year coming from the state of NC just from cable fees. Obviously, we have some other factors (half of that goes to Fox, ad money raises that number but the subscriber fee bump might not be as great for DirecTV people since the BTN already has national carriage on that provider, etc.), but from the back of the napkin calculations, UNC and Duke should pay for themselves fairly easily by bringing the state of NC just with the BTN.

        • zeek says:

          Pretty much.

          You don’t need to do much more than back of the napkin calculations to see that UNC (and Duke) would pay for themselves.

          It’s pretty much intuitive.

        • BuckeyeBeau says:

          @ FtT. Thanks for the extra information. I noted that Illinois had only 58% CHHs and that seemed really odd. I did not realize that the satellite providers were not included. That explains the wide variation.

          this article is a couple of years old, but it talks about wired cable providers vs. what they term alternative delivery systems (ADSs) such as satellite and internet. http://www.tvnewscheck.com/article/47812/cable-penetration-hits-21year-low

          • BuckeyeBeau says:

            an interesting article about Nielsen now adding internet connected TVs to the definition of “tv household.”

            http://mediadecoder.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/02/21/tvs-connected-to-the-internet-to-be-counted-by-nielsen/

          • BuckeyeBeau says:

            This tvb.org website is really interesting. Lots of links and articles about media platforms, viewing trends, etc. I recommend a visit if only to see the massive amount of content.

            Anyway, this was an interesting summary of trends in the last year of tv watching.

            some interesting tidbits: last summer, we all watched an extra 90 minutes of tv; we are more and more watching time-delayed tv. “On a Monthly Time Spent basis, 18-49 year-old adults spent 14 times as many hours watching video on television versus the Internet, and 26 times as many hours versus mobile phones.”

            “TV households are still adding new technologies but none so much as Tablets. Year-over-year, Tablets grew 19.8% to 17.4 million in TV Homes. DVRs are getting closer to 50 percent of TV households, growing +2.7% to 50.3 million, and High Definition TV sets also grew +1.6% to 88.1 million. DVD/BluRay Players saw a slight decline (-1.1%) to 95.9 million.”

            In the article, there is a link to the underlying Nielsen quarterly report. Some interesting stuff in there too. There was a chart breaking down types of viewing by race. Thought it was interesting. It would not let me c&p the whole chart, but only the numbers.

            White, AA, Hispanics, Asians
            Broadcast Only
            9% 12% 15% 12%
            Wired Cable
            51% 53% 44% 51%
            Telco [not sure what this is. Telephone company?]
            9% 9% 7% 13%
            Satellite
            32% 27% 34% 25%

            http://www.tvb.org/trends/273069

          • BruceMcF says:

            Telco are the internet packet subscription networks, like AT&T’s U-verse and Verizon’s FIOS. They basically flip the model of cable companies that sell internet services over the cable, by providing internet service and then feeding their “cable” channels over the internet connection as a high QOS priority feed from their intra-net servers.

        • skeptic says:

          Frank,

          while you’re 90% overall pay tv penetration figure is probably close to correct, for our purposes here, 80% is probably more correct.

          previously i said go with 85% of households, but i wanted to error on the high side.

          85% is what i usually use when doing the math, but wouldn’t be surprised if 80% wasn’t closer to correct.

          90% probably would be close for total penetration, but for our purposes, we need households taking at least an expanded basic or equivalent level of service.

          many homes take just limited basic, which is mostly just the local broadcast nets, and maybe C-Span, some home shopping, and maybe weather.

          Comcast, Dish Net, UVerse, and some other providers, also offer low cost “family” packages that carry some well known basic channels, but not the expensive ones like ESPN, TNT, or BTN, that carry most of the sports.

          the latino population grows daily, and they subscribe to pay tv, but many get mostly Spanish language packs that don’t include BTN, even within the footprint.

          the limited basic group is probably the largest, but between limited basic, the latino, and the family package subs, that would probably account for at least another 10% of homes. (limited basic probably makes up 10% by itself).

          you also use $1 per sub per mo bump for flipping the state, which is probably also high, (i doubt the major players other than possibly Dish, are even paying $1 per sub), and the fact that BTN already gets out of footprint fees in NC.

          i know the SI article i linked referenced a $1 difference, but as i said next to the link, i think their “in footprint” fee is high.

          still, using the highest fee quote i’ve seen in any publication, and using 90% instead of a more correct one, and using the most populated state mentioned where there would be any chance for 1 school to flip the whole state, (assuming it could flip the whole state, and would come alone), you still were way short of break even. (other states fall even shorter of covering)

          i’ll help you here, as i did not include any gate share, so you could probably add another 3 mil there, which brings you closer to break even.

          that said, again, looking at a best case scenario, on the most populated state being discussed with any chance of one school flipping the whole state, using 90% instead of a more realistic 80%, and using the highest of sub fee quotes, you still don’t reach break even.

          and what’s the dollar figure on the legacy schools giving up their sovereignty of their conference and half their long time football rivals?

          it will no longer be the legacy schools’ conference, (if it still is now). NOT A SMALL THING.

          what’s the dollar value on that loss?

          and schools will be giving up half their highest profile traditional rivals. NOT A SMALL THING.

          what’s the dollar value on that loss?

          i don’t think it’s really sunk in to fans yet, that Iowa and Wisc and Illinois and Minn and NW fans will no longer be seeing OSU and Mich and MSU and PSU in their stadiums anymore, except maybe once every 6 yrs or more.

          and what’s the impact on travel costs, and on minor sports.

          AND WHAT HAPPENS IF AND WHEN THIS ALL GOES POOF, AND DOESN’T GO AS HOPED FOR, WITH STRANGE BEDFELLOWS BROUGHT TOGETHER ONLY BY THE PROMISE OF A YET TO BE PROVEN GOLDEN GOOSE.

          yes, future tier 1 and 2 rights will be enhanced some, but i think it’s very debatable how much, and not Delany, nor anyone at News Corp, nor any media guru alive, can accurately predict just what that impact will be. nor will they be able to break it down even after the fact.

          tier 1 and 2 rights will go way up, (assuming no major shifts in the current multichannel dynamics between now and then), but they will go up expansion or not.

          B10 spin will credit any and all gains to expansion, but that will be disingenuous at best.

          and as i said, even after the fact, there will be no way to quantify how much, if any, of said gains were due to expansion, and how much were due to industry dynamics.

          remember, all the Disney games are already shown and watched nationwide, and will continue to be, regardless of expansion.

          and everyone has just brushed aside the fundamental reason why the numbers don’t add up.

          it’s because all tiers already have a 50 state, not 9 state, revenue model, split only 12 ways.

          common sense should dictate that therefore it should be difficult for a new school to cover a share.

          not vice versa.

          any new school would need to move the meter not only regionally, but nationally, to justify a cut of already national revenues.

          i see no golden goose here, and certainly no guaranteed one.

          i do see the loss of a conference, of sovereignty, of rivalries, and of loss to other conferences as collateral damage. which are all guaranteed.

          and i see only News Corp as the big winner.

          yes, i question the leadership of the legacy schools here.

          somebody should, and no one else is.

          • BruceMcF says:

            And well over beating the average BTN contribution. So long as we are talking about teams that will bring substantial value to either national broadcast or cable contracts, and add substantial non-media conference revenue, its not necessary to cover the entire conference payout out of the BTN earnings alone.

    • zeek says:

      There’s so many issues with this post, I’m not sure where to begin.

      In the first place, the Big Ten earns a rights fee as part of the Big Ten Network agreement. My understanding of the situation was that the rights fee was increased when Nebraska was added to the conference and will again be increased for further additions. Even if it isn’t, it will be accounted for in the next BTN agreement in 20 years. That already accounts for a majority of what each school receives from the BTN agreement right now.

      Secondly, advertising revenue has already started to become as important to the Big Ten Network as cable subscriptions. When you talk about great basketball draws like UNC and Duke, their ability to increase viewership on the BTN (directly on the BTN or by taking up slots from CBS/ESPN and pushing big draws like Indiana/Michigan/Michigan State/Ohio State to the BTN more often) will also expand advertising revenue directly as ratings increase from better matchups on the BTN.

      Third, the Big Ten’s Tier 1 contract is massively undervalued right now; probably by a factor of 2x at least, maybe as high as 2.5x.

      Fourth, Fox is the one who is incentivized to get more cable subs for the BTN given that they currently take a majority of the profit from it, and as they roll out FS1 and FS2, they’ll have more of an incentive to tie the BTN to those and to YES in primary markets.

      In my opinion, there are no two additions on the field as favorable as UNC and Duke. Even if they share a state, they should each add significantly more than the $25 million that they’d take annually (as of right now). As far as the BTN goes, those two schools are an obvious slam dunk.

      • zeek says:

        This is also why UNC and Duke are probably the top 2 choices for the SEC as well for their future network.

        There aren’t many TV properties as valuable as UNC/Duke; they bring one of the biggest and fastest growing states, and they bring impressive basketball ratings in that state. All of which makes them prime additions for a cable network.

        • Phil says:

          Also, think about what a blow to ESPN’s college basketball coverage it would be to lose the C7 followed soon after by Duke/UNC. The B1G getting those two schools would make the contract battle in a few years very interesting.

      • bullet says:

        I don’t think the Big 10′s Tier I is that undervalued. The Big 12′s Tier I only went up 2/3, from $60 million to $100 million per year. Most of the increase was in Tier II. While it should go up significantly, I would be very surprised if the Big 10′s Tier I contract doubled. ABC/ESPN aren’t getting more games.

        • ccrider55 says:

          “The Big 12′s Tier I only went up 2/3, from $60 million to $100 million…”

          But it was for a conference missing 1/3 of those in the prior contract, and for a smaller 10 team conference, and had the prior payout not reduced because of the drop in numbers. Assuming realignment chaos hasn’t hit the B12 it is very reasonably to have expected a doubling, or more.

          • bullet says:

            TV consultants said CU was a drag (Coloradans want to ski and watch pro sports), MU was a wash (Cardinals and Royals) and A&M had value but was a duplicate market. Nebraska was the only real loss. WVU and TCU have more BCS appearances and higher poll rankings than the first 3. So there wasn’t a huge loss of value. And on Tier I, you get the same number of games regardless of the number of teams in the league, so larger leagues add no direct value.

            In AP poll appearances in the BCS era:
            12 Nebraska 163
            19 TCU 115
            23 W. Virginia 113
            26 Texas A&M 92
            33 Missouri 72
            48 Colorado 42

          • ccrider55 says:

            I understand who left and who came in. I disagree they are close to a wash. But assuming they are, you still have reduced the number of teams, the chance that one or two of four have an unexpectedly good year. Enough to get selected to a tier 1 game, and a chance to have that game be against one of the other three. TCU and WVU have only one opportunity a year to achieve that, other tier 1 appearances may only be duplicates because of opponent.

            Hope that is less confusing than I fear. Basically I’m saying there are more chances at quality games with 12 than 10, or that the missing four provided potentially six games between themselves (depending on scheduling) compared only one matchup between the new two. Plus the value of a CCG and potential matchups leading up to it, but lets skip that for this comparison. That pushes higher quality to tier 2.

          • zeek says:

            @bullet

            Regardless of what that TV exec. said, there was that survey a couple of years ago which listed Texas A&M among the 4 most watched Big 12 teams outside of the Big 12 footprint (Texas, Oklahoma, Nebraska were the other 3).

            Even if the home market was duplicated by Texas, the fact that A&M grabbed viewership better than the other 8 teams had to be the primary consideration when you’re talking about national TV deals.

          • BruceMcF says:

            Though if the two teams that get interesting in the same year are in different divisions, with 12 teams and 9 conference games, there’s a 1/3 chance they don’t play each other. Hence the insistence on only expanding with “the right schools”.

          • Andy says:

            bullet, you’re so full of it. you dismiss Missouri because of the Cards and Royals, but then ignore the Rangers, Astros, Cowboys, Texans, Spurs, Rockets, Mavericks, etc.

          • FranktheAg says:

            Here is the overall historical standings of the AP poll, based on total points:

            1. Oklahoma
            2. Ohio State
            3. Michigan
            4. Nebraska
            5. Notre Dame
            6 USC
            7.Alabama
            8. Texas
            9. Florida State
            10. Florida
            11. Miami (FL)
            12. Penn State
            13. Tennessee
            14. LSU
            15. Georgia
            16. Auburn
            17. UCLA
            18. Texas A&M
            19. Washington
            20. Virginia Tech

            So the Big 12 lost number 4 and number 19. Colorado is #22 and Mizzou is #48. WVU checks in at #30 and TCU checks in at #37.

            http://www.collegepollarchive.com/football/ap/total_points.cfm?decade=all&rows=50

          • bullet says: