B1G East Coast Expansion: Big Ten Adds Johns Hopkins Lacrosse and the Pinstripe Bowl

Posted: June 3, 2013 in Big Ten, College Basketball, College Football, Illinois Fighting Illini, Sports
Tags: , , , , ,

The Big Ten continues the march to increase its presence on the East Coast by adding Johns Hopkins men’s lacrosse as the conference’s first-ever affiliate member and the Pinstripe Bowl based at Yankee Stadium in New York City as a bowl tie-in. These moves aren’t necessarily earth-shattering in the way that the expansion with Maryland and Rutgers was back in November, but they show how Jim Delany and the Big Ten’s university presidents are aiming to make the league as much of an East Coast conference as it is a Midwestern conference.

As far as men’s lacrosse programs go, Johns Hopkins is considered to be the gold standard with more national championships than any other school and clung onto independence in the same way that Notre Dame continues to do so for football.* At the same time, the Big Ten has long had the stance that schools with either “all in” or “all out” (hence the hardline resistance to ever offer schools like Notre Dame any non-football membership). So, it was a bit of a surprise when news broke a few months ago that the Big Ten and JHU were exploring an affiliate relationship. Johns Hopkins then formed a Blue Ribbon Committee that ultimately recommended that the men’s lacrosse team should join a conference last month in a fascinating report. Among the requirements that JHU deemed to be important were an initial membership period of 5 years and that the school could maintain its current TV contract with ESPNU. A number of Big Ten observers thought that the latter TV rights item would be an obstacle on paper (since increasing the inventory of desirable non-football/basketball programming has been a primary goal of the Big Ten Network), but that was assuaged by the fact that Johns Hopkins would not receive any conference revenue (which would make any potential complications as to how an affiliate member would partake in the BTN money trough moot).

(* For anyone that remembers the original version of The Official Preppy Handbook, I always recall that lacrosse was listed as a preppy sport simply because people from Baltimore loved it and that the city was “very prep”. That’s quite a jarring characterization these days for people that have seen The Wire.)

Looking back, this was a perfect storm for both parties to get to this position: the Big Ten needed 1 more school to create a men’s lacrosse league after it had added Maryland and Rutgers, Johns Hopkins had been concerned about how conference realignment was changing its ability to remain independent in men’s lacrosse even before it had failed to make it to the NCAA Lacrosse Tournament for the first time since it began in 1971, and JHU would provide the Big Ten an elite academic research powerhouse located in close proximity to the conference’s other Eastern members and the very best program in the history of the sport. Plus, the only sports that Johns Hopkins sponsors at the Division I level are men’s and women’s lacrosse*, while the rest of its athletic department operates under Division III. Finally, if JHU ends up joining the Committee of Institutional Cooperation (CIC), which is the academic research consortium that includes all 14 Big Ten members plus the University of Chicago, then it’s a coup in terms of prestige. (For whatever reason, Penn State’s official press release on the new Big Ten lacrosse league is the only place that I’ve seen that mentions Hopkins contacting the CIC.) All of those factors make this situation quite unique compared to thoughts of adding Notre Dame for various non-football sports or, say, Boston University for hockey. As a result, I don’t see the addition of Johns Hopkins for men’s lacrosse as any indication of a broader intent by the Big Ten to search for affiliate members in other sports. Johns Hopkins was the right program in the right sport with the right academic profile at the right time for the Big Ten.

(* Interestingly enough, the Johns Hopkins women’s lacrosse program is going in the opposite direction of choosing independence after having been a member of the American Lacrosse Conference. The ALC featured three Big Ten programs, including national powerhouse Northwestern. I’m personally not a fan of JHU going in this direction as the school would have technically been “all in” with the Big Ten for all of its Division I sports if women’s lacrosse had joined, but it’s less of an issue since men’s lacrosse is clearly the marquee program there. It’s akin to Notre Dame stating that it would join a conference football but go independent in its other sports, where pretty much any league would say, “That’s kind of weird, but HELL YES, we’ll take that deal!” Also note that Northwestern and Maryland have more women’s lacrosse national championships between them than all of the other schools that sponsor the sport *combined*, so the intense competition level may have also been a factor for JHU. That being said, there still seems to be somewhat of a door open for the women’s program to join the Big Ten down the road, as the powers that be have claimed that they “haven’t discussed it” yet.)

Meanwhile, a little further north, the Big Ten and New York Yankees announced that the conference will have a tie-in with the New Era Pinstripe Bowl for the next 8 years (with the opponent almost certainly coming from the ACC). From the standpoint of increasing the Big Ten’s mindshare on the East Coast, the tie-in makes perfect sense. The long-term goal of Jim Delany is to make the Big Ten into the de facto “home conference” for the New York City market in the same way that it is in Chicago already. To be sure, that’s a monumentally tough task (as the number of Big Ten grads in the Chicago market is massive by comparison), but the hope is that the cumulative effect of the presence of Rutgers, the Pinstripe Bowl tie-in, and the fans and alums from other Big Ten schools that have a large presence in the NYC area (particularly Penn State, Michigan, Ohio State and now Maryland) will gain traction there in a way that none of the other conferences would be able to (which is arguably a risk well worth taking considering the size and power of that market). In an interesting marketing wrinkle, the Big Ten will actually have a fixed sign in Yankee Stadium along the first base line along with being part of the rotating ads behind home plate during regular season Yankees games starting in 2014, which might end up being the best advertising that the conference could get in that market.

Whether the Pinstripe Bowl will actually be a great deal for traveling fans is a different matter. Believe me – I love New York City and enjoy the idea of playing a bowl game there, but most of the Big Ten territory prefers its winter destinations to be escapes from the cold weather of the North*. At the same time, Yankee Stadium isn’t in Manhattan or even in a neighborhood comparable to Wrigleyville in Chicago. (As a White Sox fan, it always amuses me when people complain about the “bad” neighborhood that surrounds U.S. Cellular Field as being a drag on attendance since it makes it clear that they’ve never visited the Bronx.) I could see how Rutgers, Penn State and Maryland could travel up to the Pinstripe Bowl fairly easily, but it remains to be seen how the rest of the conference would travel there.

(* If the speculation is true that the Big Ten bowl rotation will consist of the Rose, Orange, Capital One, Outback and Holiday at the top, a mix of the Kraft Fight Hunger, Pinstripe and Gator/Music City at the next level, and a new Detroit Lions bowl against the ACC and maybe the Heart of Dallas in the old Cotton Bowl at the bottom, then I’ll be pretty happy with that lineup. It would hurt to lose the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl since the Phoenix area is such a large home base for Big Ten transplants, but the Kraft Fight Hunger is going to turn into a top notch game when it moves to the new 49ers stadium in Santa Clara and I will always quickly find any excuse to head out to San Diego. I’ll have a more in-depth analysis of the entire Big Ten bowl lineup once it’s officially confirmed.)

The overall message from the Big Ten today is that it’s going full steam ahead in heading to the East Coast. I’ve long been confident that the strategy will work around leveraging Maryland to get into the Washington, DC and Baltimore markets (which will only be further aided by adding Johns Hopkins as an affiliate member), yet the New York City portion of this cycle of expansion and bowl contracts will determine whether Big Ten is going to end up being the second most powerful sports entity in America after the NFL in 10 years or we’ll be sitting around wondering why the conference had chased after cable network fool’s gold. There’s a better chance for the former to occur than what a lot of conference realignment skeptics believe, but the latter could certainly still happen.

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

(Image from Baltimore Sun)

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Comments
  1. Carl says:

    PSU #1

  2. Penn State Danny says:

    Hoping to someday see PSU play Pitt in the Pinstripe.

  3. Alan from Baton Rouge says:

    GEAUX Tigers! On to Omaha!

    • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

      Super Regionals are finally set. UNC holds off FAU in 13 innings. Rice also upsets #8 national seed Oregon. 14 #1 seeds and 2 #2 seeds advance.

      Congrats to loki’s Rice Owls and ‘shroom & duff’s Hoosiers for advancing.

      By Conference:

      SEC (4) – LSU, Vandy, South Carolina & Miss State
      ACC (4) – UNC, NC State, UVa, & Florida State
      Pac 12 (2) – Oregon State & UCLA
      Big XII (2) – K-State & Oklahoma
      B1G – Indiana
      Big East – Louisville
      Big West – CSU Fullerton
      CUSA – Rice

      This weekend’s match-ups:

      South Carolina at #1 UNC
      Louisville at #2 Vandy
      K-State at #3 Oregon State
      Oklahoma (2) at #4 LSU
      UCLA at #5 Fullerton
      Miss State at #6 Virginia
      Indiana at #7 Florida State
      Rice (2) at NC State

      • duffman says:

        Update for start of CWS

        Today
        Mississippi State (SEC) vs Oregon State (PAC) 3:00 PM EST on ESPN2
        Indiana (B1G) vs Louisville (Big East) 8:00 PM ESTon ESPN

        Tomorrow
        North Carolina (ACC) vs NC State (ACC) 3:00 PM EST on ESPN2
        UCLA (PAC) vs LSU SEC 8:00 PM EST on ESPN2

  4. greg says:

    Hawks.

  5. Olson says:

    Welcome to the B1G family!

  6. swesleyh says:

    Gig EM’

  7. largeR says:

    XLAX?

  8. vp19 says:

    The Big Ten should tell JHU it can only join the CIC if it becomes a member in women’s lacrosse. Like Notre Dame in football, Hopkins thinks it’s bigger than the game, and I’m sorry Delany acceded to JHU’s demands.

    • ccrider55 says:

      Perhaps JHU said it would only join the CIC if the men’s LAX could come alone? Isn’t that really the cherry here? I’m glad the COP/C accede to that.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      The Big Ten should tell JHU it can only join the CIC if it becomes a member in women’s lacrosse.

      And how does that negotiating tactic help the Big Ten? The Big Ten would take the Hopkins women’s program, but it doesn’t need them. I’d say that if Hopkins joined for the CIC plus men’s LAX, the Big Ten might arguably be getting the better end of the deal. It certainly wouldn’t be any worse off than before.

      Like Notre Dame in football, Hopkins thinks it’s bigger than the game, and I’m sorry Delany acceded to JHU’s demands.

      Exactly how does Hopkins think that…when THEY joined a conference, and Notre Dame football did not? What demands did they make, that Delany acceded to? Is there an inside story that you’re privy to, that the rest of us missed?

    • bikemore says:

      Something strange happened with the women’s end of this. Several sites reported yesterday that women’s lacrosse was joining too.

      And if you google (hopkins “news-letter” big ten lacrosse), you see a link to the JHU News-Letter stating–on the search page–that Hopkins would join for both men’s and women’s. If you open the link, you go to the updated version, which says only men’s will join. But the search page still uses the cached version, published yesterday, and that shows that the JHU newsletter itself thought both were joining.

      My guess is that women’s will join too, but they’re not ready to announce for whatever reason.

      • GreatLakeState says:

        Most of the articles also included a statement along the lines of: ‘the B1G will be adding both men’s and woman’s LAX’. This may have confused some people into thinking JHU’s woman’s team was joining as well. With that said, I think you may be onto something.

      • BruceMcF says:

        I speculated earlier that that if the Big Ten was willing to tolerate the women’s team as independent, that might not extend to joining a conference other than the Big Ten women’s competition … if there is a term to the agreement that JHU women’s team would either be independent or in the Big Ten, that could easily get distorted at one or two steps remove into the women joining the Big Ten.

        • Brian says:

          BruceMcF,

          “I speculated earlier that that if the Big Ten was willing to tolerate the women’s team as independent, that might not extend to joining a conference other than the Big Ten women’s competition … if there is a term to the agreement that JHU women’s team would either be independent or in the Big Ten, that could easily get distorted at one or two steps remove into the women joining the Big Ten.”

          I agree, it seems highly unlikely the B10 would let the women compete in another conference. I think the B10 is hoping that the men will have such a good experience that JHU will change their mind and have the women join. The B10 isn’t the American Lacrosse Conference. It has the unity and resources to make the experience better.

        • frug says:

          Under NCAA rules I don’t even think JHU could put their women’s program in another conference.

          Supposedly their is a rule stating that you can’t divide your athletic department amongst different conferences unless one conference doesn’t sponsor one of your sports (i.e. Missouri is allowed to put its wrestling team in the MAC because the SEC doesn’t sponsor the sport but they couldn’t do the same for baseball which the SEC does sponsor).

          • Brian says:

            frug,

            “Under NCAA rules I don’t even think JHU could put their women’s program in another conference.

            Supposedly their is a rule stating that you can’t divide your athletic department amongst different conferences unless one conference doesn’t sponsor one of your sports (i.e. Missouri is allowed to put its wrestling team in the MAC because the SEC doesn’t sponsor the sport but they couldn’t do the same for baseball which the SEC does sponsor).”

            But what if the women joined a conference that doesn’t offer men’s lacrosse, the Big South? They’d say the Centennial Conference is their home league and their two D-I programs are split because the Big South doesn’t offer men’s lacrosse. Is there a clause that would force them to join the B10 since it does offer both? I don’t know.

          • BruceMcF says:

            They are presently in a single sport conference, which they are leaving to become independent in the 2014/2015 school year. That conference would be compliant, it does not sponsor men’s lacrosse.

          • frug says:

            Damn, didn’t think of it that way, but, yeah, they would probably be acceptable under NCAA rules.

          • Eric says:

            That would be the case if they were a full Big Ten member. You can be an independent in a sport and not join your conferences league. You can not join another conference for a sport when your conference sponsors it.

            John Hopkins isn’t a full Big Ten member though, they are just an affiliate (specific contract for a single sport) so the NCAA rule doesn’t apply to them.

    • Transic says:

      vp19,

      Like you, I also hope that Hopkins goes “all-in” and, if the tweet reported by Frank is legit, they might still go “all-in” in the near future.

      Do realize, though, that Delany works for the B1G universities, not the other way around. I know that is what it looks like but the reality is different. JHU’s academic heft overwhelms whatever issues some fans may have about affiliate membership.

      1. B1G gets the sixth team to start up the men’s lacrosse league
      2. Having them in the CIC helps to shut up the whining elitists who think that renowned schools like Nebraska are beneath them, not to mention the added political power of Hopkins
      3. Helps to turn down a few notches the chest-thumping on the part of the ACC’ers who come here, at least until they reveal their new “vaunted master plan” to defeat the B1G

      Btw, in case anyone want to see the video of the press conference, here it is:

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1l3wk7N6LyI

      • Brian says:

        Transic,

        “Like you, I also hope that Hopkins goes “all-in” and, if the tweet reported by Frank is legit, they might still go “all-in” in the near future.”

        I think all or almost all of us want that given that the men’s team is a done deal. The difference is in how upset we are by their partial membership.

        “2. Having them in the CIC helps to shut up the whining elitists who think that renowned schools like Nebraska are beneath them, not to mention the added political power of Hopkins”

        NE is a very good school, but they are clearly the bottom of the B10 academically. It is a fair are to complain about, as is the lack of athletic success at RU. Besides, I don’t think adding JHU will stop any of the NE complaints. Maybe if they were added at the same time, but not this far apart.

        “3. Helps to turn down a few notches the chest-thumping on the part of the ACC’ers who come here, at least until they reveal their new “vaunted master plan” to defeat the B1G”

        I don’t worry much about internet posters, but it was helpful to the B10 to not let the ACC reestablish themselves in MD by getting JHU’s men’s lacrosse. This solidifies the B10 as the college conference of the mid-Atlantic, from DC to Baltimore to Philadelphia to Newark (NYC is up in the air, but the B10 has it for CFB), with DC, MD, DE, PA and NJ all solidly B10.

    • Brian says:

      vp19,

      “The Big Ten should tell JHU it can only join the CIC if it becomes a member in women’s lacrosse.”

      Why? Their women’s team isn’t a big deal. They aren’t even very good. Yes, it would be a little more mid-Atlantic access but men’s lax is a much bigger deal than women’s.

      Things the B10 wanted in this deal:
      1. JHU’s men’s lacrosse team – 6th men’s lax team, lax king, more mid-Atlantic access, etc
      2. JHU in the CIC – #1 research school
      3. To keep JHU out of the ACC
      4.
      5.
      6.
      7.
      8.
      9.
      10. JHU’s women’s lacrosse team

      If you get the men’s team, why would you turn down their research? That’s cutting off your nose to spite your face.

      If you want the B10 to make a principled stand on not having a partial member by having all JHU’s D-I teams join, I can understand that. But then you should be rejecting the men’s team, not their CIC membership.

  9. JohnCassillo says:

    Slight side note:

    JHU continues to cling to the “most national titles” meme, while conveniently grabbing disputed titles the same way Alabama does in football. Meanwhile, back at the ranch, Syracuse has won two more championships (11 versus Hopkins’ nine) since the NCAA started sponsoring a men’s lacrosse tournament. To me, the biggest issue for JHU in aligning with the B1G is its fear of becoming irrelevant in a shrinking at-large pool, first and foremost. After missing the tournament for the first time in forever this season, it lit a flame under their ass that likely would’ve stayed dormant if they’d scored an at-large bid and maybe advanced a round. They’re panicking in a way maybe Notre Dame football would’ve if not for their recent resurgence, so they grabbed the boat that needed them most (the B1G), not the one that provided the best competition and fit (the ACC).

    • ccrider55 says:

      These rumors/talks far predate JHU’s missing the post season. Frank’s post from February: http://frankthetank.me/2013/02/07/big-ten-expansion-lacrosse-style-potential-catholic-7-fallout-and-the-classic-east-c7-name-game/

    • BruceMcF says:

      Though all of this got underway well before the NCAA tournament bids went out. So this would be panicking in advance of the event that was supposed to cause the panic.

    • GreatLakeState says:

      Competition, without a doubt. But with Maryland joining the Big Ten, the question of ‘fit’ is debatable. Yes, the ACC is dominant. Sort of like Canada was dominant in hockey before the rest of the world took up the sport. Penn State is already respectable and within a decade the Big Ten’s resources and network will help them narrow the gap.
      As for your ‘panic’ theory, this article refutes that:
      http://www.baltimoresun.com/sports/lacrosse-blog/bal-johns-hopkins-lacrosse-program-to-join-big-ten-20130602,0,1998652.story

      BTW, I thought you were happy for us?

      • gfunk says:

        I don’t mean to burst your bubble, but Canada is still pretty damn formidable in hockey – all levels – and they have far less people than say the US or Russia. Moreover, they continue to place the bulk of the best into the NHL.

        As for BIG Lax, men’s side, people overlook Rutgers’ upside. They’re closer to Long Island than Syracuse & NJ prep lacrosse is generally top 5.

        Btw, the BIG will be the dominant lacrosse conference on the women’s side from 2014 on. Md simply puts them in distant first.

        • GreatLakeState says:

          Rest easy, you’re not bursting my bubble.

          1) Canada has only won 9 world championships in the last 50 years. Same as Sweden, which is a third its size.
          2) The bulk yes (50% of NHL is Canadian), the bulk of the best? Less all the time. Per capita Sweden creates the best hockey players. Last year Malkin(R) Lundqvist (S) Karlsson (S) and Landeskog (S) won the Hart, Vezina, Norris and Calder trophies with Bergeron (C) winning the Selke.
          3) Who mentioned women’s lacrosse?

          • gfunk says:

            I wasn’t responding to you on the W. Lax note. A simple reminder that lacrosse dominance is not just measured on the men’s side.

            Last year was a good year for Swedish NHL players, but they don’t deliver like Canada on the big stage: Olympic Gold or Stanley Cup leadership. Could they get there someday? I don’t know. They definitely need to play on this side of the Atlantic in order to stay the course.

            World Championships are nice, but the NHL is ultimately the real deal, esp the playoffs. WC’s are also relegated to Olympic sized ovals if I’m not mistaken. Throw in the officiating at the WC level – the hits and fights just don’t come with regularity. Furthermore, the Olympics trumps WC’s. Canada has 4x more gold than Sweden. WC’s are simply third wheel, at most.

            Technically & factually, I compared Canadian per capita talent with the US and Russia. I know Sweden, among others, have more per capita talent than Canada. But the Canucks, as stated, rule the biggest stages: Olympics and Stanley Cup. They also dominate the all time stats categories of the NHL. If I’m not mistaken, Mats Sundin is the only Swede in the top 30, all time scoring, and he’s barely there, no. 27.

            Swedish players are a whole lot of finesse, but often lacking in the toughness department. Of course there are exceptions, but not enough. Toughness & skill often prevails in the NHL, long term.

            I root for the Swedes, great players, but tragically soft often enough.

            PS Malkin is quite Russian & Bergeron is Canadian. Great Lakes, your hockey knowledge needs some work : ).

          • gfunk says:

            Also, in terms of nations, hockey will generally remain a northern sport, it’s far from wide scale global popularity. Your first post mentions “the rest of the world.” Be more specific, because most nations could give a crap about hockey. Furthermore, most of the hockey world we know of, adopted the game soon after Canada broke ground, long ago. Russia (USSR) had a dominant run from pretty much 1956 – 1988. Sweden won a Silver by the third Olympic Games.

            The fall of Communism simply brought the NHL great Eastern Europeans, that’s the last surge in the sport’s popularity.

            PS My words: “Canada is still pretty damn formidable”. How did this turn into a pissing contest on your end? Reread your post. I’m just reminding you the Canadians still run hockey, which is not really debatable. Not yet.

          • jj says:

            G-funk

            Nick Lidstrom was the best hockey player of this generation. Subject to debate of course, but not much.

    • Jaime LongBottom says:

      Syracuse has more NCAA titles and Hopkins has more overall champions. The sport did in fact exist before the 70s so I really don’t see the problem.

    • gfunk says:

      Too bad Syracuse had to vacate one of the those titles : ). And the violations were quite severe.

      • JohnCassillo says:

        Ah, of course. Because secondary violations where a coach’s wife co-signs for a car loan to help a player out is “pretty severe.” You’re totally right.

        • gfunk says:

          Yes, severe in my book and stupid as well. Dude why you on here hating on this decision and JHU? Chill out. Syracuse has a sliver’s edge on JHU in the NCAA era, but not overall history. The fact is they have 9 NCAA titles, that’s pretty damn impressive, better than all but Syracuse. They’re both fantastic programs.

          JHU misses the tourney one time in the past 4 decades and you are predicting the Apocalypse. JHF’ngC! Sorry your team got schooled by Duke. Syracuse wasn’t even the best team in NY this year.

          JHU joins Md and rising programs OSU & PSU. They’ll be fine & so will the BIG. If you want lacrosse to grow beyond the Mid Atlantic and Northeast, then JHU to the BIG is far better for the growth of the sport than say an ACC affiliate membership.

        • Brian says:

          JohnCassillo,

          “Ah, of course. Because secondary violations where a coach’s wife co-signs for a car loan to help a player out is “pretty severe.””

          That sounds like something that would get a major CFB program in serious trouble. People were outraged that OSU p[layers might have gotten good deals from a used car dealer (turns out they didn’t, half paid above blue book). Co-signing a loan is very close to just giving them money since the coach’s wife was responsible for the debt and her signature probably influenced the interest rate, too. The player never really needed to make a payment. I’d expect the NCAA to take that very seriously.

        • BruceMcF says:

          “I promise to make your car payments if you don’t” ~ even if the intent was “I know you’re trustworthy, I’ll vouch for you”, the reality of what co-signing is makes it something the NCAA can’t turn a blind eye to without opening up the barn door. If you only want to count national championships sponsored by the NCAA, then they have to be counted under NCAA rules.

    • Hopkins Horn says:

      Um, what disputed titles has JHU been conveniently grabbing along the way? Please enlighten me.

    • BruceMcF says:

      According to the NCAA site, it would be 10 to 9. 10 is normally one more than 9, in decimal base arithmetic. The 1990 tournament win did not suffice to win the championship in that year, there’s a * attached to the result. You can’t both declare that championships don’t count for the more than three quarters of the century before the NCAA sponsored a championship, and then ignore the NCAA rulings on which championships do count once they did started sponsoring the sport.

    • Brian says:

      JohnCassillo,

      By all accounts the ACC showed zero interest in JHU. It’s really hard to join a league that doesn’t want you. So taking the ACC out of the equation, does another conference provide better competition and a better fit for JHU than the B10?

      • BruceMcF says:

        They were all over the academics in the Press Conference (youtube link above) ~ the President, the AD, the Coach. And made a point that every point they raised they thought would be a deal killer, the Big Ten said, ‘Yes, we can do that.’ Hard to see the ACC that in no way needed JHU to square a circle would have had the same reaction.

        From various remarks in the Press Conference, first discussion between AD and Coach about multiple paths to NCAA tournament via a conference tournament AQ was 2 years ago, Big Ten seems to have approached JHU about six months ago (in line with it possibly following a promise to UMD to make sure its lacrosse wasn’t stranded), the AD and Coach chewed it over, went to the President to pursue it, President set up committee, committee recommended joining a conference, and since then seems like the Big Ten getting the votes in order for a unanimous decision to admit JHU as an affiliate.

        • Brian says:

          I was just pointing out that he was creating a false choice. JHU didn’t turn down the ACC, the ACC didn’t seem to want them. So of the remaining options, which conference offered the best competition and best fit? I’d say the B10.

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        By all accounts the ACC showed zero interest in JHU.

        Not disagreeing—as I haven’t searched exhaustively—but where are those accounts? I haven’t seen any story indicating that the ACC rebuffed Hopkins.

        Hopkins probably would’ve chosen the Big Ten in any event, but I can’t imagine why the ACC wouldn’t have wanted them, if it ever had the chance.

        • BruceMcF says:

          The Sun: http://touch.baltimoresun.com/#section/-1/article/p2p-76153325/

          Quote from Calder: “The ACC wasn’t an option,” Calder said. “I had tried to reach them and did not hear anything back from them. My assumption is that because they do not allow non-full time affiliate members or associate members, it really wasn’t an option.”

          • Richard says:

            Huh? ND’s playing football in the ACC now?

          • BruceMcF says:

            But Affiliate member is a technical term. JHU will be an affiliate member in the Big Ten ~ which previously NEITHER the Big Ten nor the ACC allowed for.

            Whether the conference allows full members to play as independents in some sport it sponsors … well, neither the Big Ten nor the ACC allowed for that previously either, but the ACC wanted Notre Dame even if those were the terms, and so now they allow for it.

            Just like the Big Ten wanted JHU on THEIR terms, and so now they have some rules allowing for affiliate members.

            The Big Ten wanted it to happen to make Maryland happy, the ACC did not seem to be all that interested in making it happen, so JHU joined the Big Ten, who accepted every single one of the terms that JHU laid out in their committee report.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          Something about that doesn’t seem quite right. For one thing, the ACC already allowed a huge exception for Notre Dame. To say they were opposed to affiliate members (or whatever the term may be) would be more than a little hypocritical.

          For another, unless I am miscounting, the ACC will no longer be an auto-bid league after they lose Maryland. Now, with the strength of their various teams it’s doubtful they’d ever be shut out of the tourney…still, you’d think they’d prefer to have the autobid in their hip pockets.

          Lastly, for the same reasons that the Big Ten wants to grow in that region, you’d think the ACC might want to block the Big Ten if the opportunity had presented itself.

          • Brian says:

            I don’t disagree with you, but I have no basis to think he’s lying. Also, I think you need to distinguish between an affiliate member (joins for 1 sport) and a non-FB member (joins for all but FB). ND is a non-FB member of the ACC. Boise is an affiliate member of the P12 for wrestling. It’s different.

          • BruceMcF says:

            They can look at auto-bid down the track. Right now its no difference ~ if the fourth ranked ACC team wins the ACC tournament, those two tournament wins and a 4th place position in the ACC are enough resume for an at-large bid.

  10. Med Prof says:

    If the JHU to B1G move results in JHU to CIC, then this is a really great play by the B1G. In fact, I’d wager that the CIC+JHU might tip the scales for schools like UVA/UNC down the road should their presidents tire of their weak ACC research sisters (which, frankly, is the entire conference sans Duke/GA Tech). Interesting that the CIC tail might eventually wag the football dog on this one down the road.

    • gfunk says:

      We don’t need UVa or UNC. Let’s park that idea for a long while.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      If the JHU to B1G move results in JHU to CIC, then this is a really great play by the B1G.

      If UVA/UNC ever switch conferences, the decision will be made primarily on what’s best for football and men’s basketball. If you made a list of factors they’d consider, the presence of Hopkins would obviously be on the plus side of the ledger, but it would be pretty far down the list.

      I’d wager that the CIC+JHU might tip the scales for schools like UVA/UNC down the road should their presidents tire of their weak ACC research sisters (which, frankly, is the entire conference sans Duke/GA Tech).

      The whole ACC isn’t “weak” in research. People throw around that word far too lightly. Pitt is a fellow-AAU school. Syracuse was in the AAU until quite recently, and although they had to leave, it would be grossly exaggerating to call them weak. Wake Forest is an elite mid-size private school. VT, Miami, and FSU, could all very well be in the AAU eventually.

      • med prof says:

        You’re argument disintegrates with Wake is an “elite” school.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          Oh, come on. Of course it is. I mean, it’s not Harvard or Johns Hopkins. But there’s a pretty big distance from Wake Forest to “weak”. For instance, here’s Wikipedia:

          In the 2013 U.S. News America’s Best Colleges report, Wake Forest ranked 13th in terms of “Best Undergraduate Teaching” and 27th overall among national universities.

          In the 2009 BusinessWeek Undergraduate Business Schools Rankings, the Calloway School of Business and Accountancy was ranked 14th overall, and tied for #1 in terms of Academic Quality.

          According to the Institute of International Education 2008 Report on International Educational Exchange, Wake Forest was ranked second in undergraduate participation in study-abroad programs among doctoral/research universities.

          The 2013 US News Graduate School Rankings ranked Wake Forest’s Law school 36th in the country, its Medical school 19th in Primary Care and 42nd in Research, and the Babcock School of Management 44th.

          • BruceMcF says:

            Your first three points are entirely beside the point ~ they are undergrad. They last one is more to the point ~ if the Law School or Business School were up in the top 25 alongside the Medical School Primary Care, it might get a “Good Professional Schools” pass, just as Notre Dame would be expected to get.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            I know it’s easly to lose track of the argument, but I was responding to the suggestion that the entire ACC, other than UVA/UNC/Duke/GT, is “weak.” Wake Forest isn’t weak. If you need a few more stats, Wake is 60th in Federal research, ahead of such AAU members as Princeton, Tulane, and Iowa State. In total research, Wake is ahead of a number of schools that no one would consider “weak,” like Brandeis, Brown, Tulane, and Georgetown.

            People toss out “weak” without any sense of perspective.

          • BruceMcF says:

            Per Scarlet_Lutefisk, when “strong” and “weak” are vis a vis Big Ten norms, this was his list after the second lowest Big Ten school in the combined Big Ten / ACC list:
            ACC 32 Notre Dame 570.6391
            ACC 34 Miami (FL) 545.8323
            ACC 37 NC St. 481.5926
            ACC 42 Virginia Tech 420.3547
            ACC 43 Wake Forest 415.1336
            ACC 51 Florida St. 371.8093
            B1G 60 Nebraska 301.8498
            ACC 63 Boston College 269.7699
            ACC 66 Louisville 234.7797
            ACC 69 Clemson 211.7657
            ACC 73 Syracuse 192.6929

            So in ACC terms, Wake Forest would be middling rather than weak, but relative to the Big Ten, its weak. Certainly Whiskey and TSUN would object heavily to slumming it with Wake Forest ~ the next one down is Florida State, which if not for being considered “weak” in academic research status would have been the most appealing add in the ACC.

      • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

        Syracuse left the AAU specifically because they are (relatively) weak in research when compared to other institutions within association.

        Using just the 11 research focused rankings from my composite list, to compare the B1G & ACC schools:

        B1G (3) Chicago 936.2152
        B1G 4 Northwestern 900.7747
        B1G 5 TSUN 898.9744
        B1G 7 Wisconsin 894.1248
        ACC 8 Duke 894.1224
        B1G 10 Minnesota 837.0713
        ACC 11 North Carolina 821.6055
        B1G 12 Illinois 808.0424
        B1G 13 Penn St. 791.8379
        B1G 14 Ohio State 788.1387
        ACC 16 Georgia Tech 762.1026
        ACC 17 Pittsburgh 761.5447
        B1G 18 Purdue 741.1839
        B1G 21 Maryland 715.5550
        ACC 23 Virginia 684.3797
        B1G 24 Sparty 681.4953
        B1G 29 Rutgers 641.0087
        B1G 30 Iowa 617.7697
        B1G 31 Indiana 577.3120
        ACC 32 Notre Dame 570.6391
        ACC 34 Miami (FL) 545.8323
        ACC 37 NC St. 481.5926
        ACC 42 Virginia Tech 420.3547
        ACC 43 Wake Forest 415.1336
        ACC 51 Florida St. 371.8093
        B1G 60 Nebraska 301.8498
        ACC 63 Boston College 269.7699
        ACC 66 Louisville 234.7797
        ACC 69 Clemson 211.7657
        ACC 73 Syracuse 192.6929

        The positional rankings are among BCS schools only. Schools that compete at other levels are not included. Chicago would be at #3 if it were included in the main list.

        As you can see Syracuse is in fact weak in research when compares to it’s peers. And the ACC as a whole is generally not as strong as the B1G in research. FWIW Syracuse would rank in the 20′s using only the undergrad focused rankings.

        • Brian says:

          I’m guessing that Marc’s point is that being a top 150 research school is pretty good in the big picture. It may be weak compared to the B10, but not weak overall.

          Weak is for diploma mills and jumped up community colleges.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          I had not realized quite how low Syracuse was compared to other B1G/ACC schools.

    • Psuhockey says:

      JHU joining the CIC is huge if it comes to pass. JHU is the number one research school overall and for federal funds by a huge margin.
      http://mup.asu.edu/research2011.pdf Page 188.
      In 2009, JHU had 1.5 billion in federal research expenditures. The next highest school was Michigan at a little over 600 million. There is a pipeline of federal money flowing into JHU. If CIC schools can partner up to receive a fraction of it, that would be a huge boon for BIG schools. Not to mention the resources available and prestige for university health systems with being associated with perhaps the biggest name in medicine in the world. JHU would turn the CIC from catnip to cocaine to college administrators. If there is another round of realignment, the BIG could have its choice of schools with only geography and t-shirt fans, which still matter with booster dominated schools like Texas and Notre Dame, as their only obstacle.

      • Chesapeake says:

        roughly half of JHU federal research comes from the Applied Physics Lab (Defense spending). That pipeline may be in jeopardy and JHU may be looking to diversify.

  11. Richard says:

    Frank:

    Small nit: The part of the Bronx where Yankee Stadium is located has cleaned up a bit. While both may be equally safe in the daytime, there are actually plenty of people walking around on the streets near Yankee Stadium.

  12. frug says:

    Maybe now the Big Ten will go back and grab FSU. I mean they are already breaking the no partial membership rule, why not the AAU requirement? Hopkins could even serve as academic cover for the ‘Noles.

    Come on Delaney you still have 27 days until the GOR kicks in…

    • Brian says:

      frug,

      “Maybe now the Big Ten will go back and grab FSU.”

      Doubtful.

      “I mean they are already breaking the no partial membership rule, why not the AAU requirement?”

      I think we put more weight in the no partial members rule than the COP/C ever did. Or perhaps I should say we twist it into also being a no affiliate member rule. There just weren’t many circumstances where it ever made sense to consider affiliates before. In hockey, the schools were happy in the WCHA and CCHA. It wasn’t until the BTN was formed and then became profitable that the notion of a B10 hockey conference really made sense. The BTN started in 2007 and PSU decided to go D-I in 2010. That’s not much time to add someone, especially since the B10 was busy with expansion for the last year of that. Besides, I don’t think MN and WI would have supported adding an affiliate that forced them to leave the WCHA (or MI and MSU, probably). They barely could stomach it for PSU, they certainly wouldn’t for Miami (OH).

      “Hopkins could even serve as academic cover for the ‘Noles.”

      I don’t think the COP/C views things that way.

      • frug says:

        I agree with you on all counts. On the other hand, it was mostly a joke post (though you could make the case that FSU would add more value to the Big Ten than any schools besides Texas and Florida)

        • Brian says:

          I know you were mostly kidding, but there are probably others who seriously think that. Besides, you’re correct about the value of FSU. My issue with them is location. I really don’t think the B10 can justify becoming a SE league.

  13. cutter says:

    The Big Ten Universities are forming a Cancer Research Consortium–see http://www.uofmhealth.org/news/archive/201305/big-ten-universities-form-big-ten-cancer-research-consortium

    Eleven of the 15 B1G/CIC schools are part of the consortium (Chicago, Maryland, Michigan State and Ohio State aren’t included). I wonder if there’s a role for Johns Hopkins in this group given its new membership in the B1G as an associate member.

    • gfunk says:

      Thanks for posting. I just read it. Why aren’t OSU, UMD & MSU involved? I could imagine JHU collaborating.

      • Richard says:

        It probably comes down to the administration of the cancer research centers deciding whether they want to collaborate right now on research or not. Over time, everyone will probably join.

      • Brian says:

        Who knows? It could be a matter of specialties not aligning or being redundant. It could be other commitments for collaboration. It could be something else.

      • Chesapeake says:

        The University of Maryland in College Park is technically a separate institution from the University of Maryland Medical School and Law Schools. The med school isn’t part of the B1G and probably wasn’t invited.

        There have been efforts to merge them so they’re all part of the same University of Maryland (by state law, only those institutions can use the UMD name) meaning that total research would be approaching $1B but the med and law schools are in Baltimore and have resisted.

        • gfunk says:

          Thanks Chesapeake, I suspect MSU is in a similar situation, don’t know about the rest.

          I truly find this consortium wonderful & relieving. When other conference fans diss the BIG’s academic angle by countering the BIG is like any conference: it’s merely sports and money driven concealed in academic talk – they’re genuinely off target.

          I’d like to see more similar consortiums.

          • Richard says:

            MSU’s cancer center likely isn’t heavily involved in research. Their medical school emphasizes patient care & community healthcare.

            U of C is in the CIC, but I don’t know how motivated they are in joning a B10 group.

            Don’t know anything about OSU.

        • Bo Darville says:

          Whenever I see UMD, I think it means Minnesota-Duluth.

        • Nemo says:

          @Chesapeake
          The MD Baltimore Professional Campus and UMD College Park have formed a “special relationship status” which brings benefits to both but not with a formal merging of Admins. It is true that the combined research funding would be large (close to $1B), but it was decided not to go back to the old system of “one” University of Maryland comprising the College Park and Baltimore campuses. One compelling reason presented is that several Universities tried to merge their undergrad and professional campuses to make their grant funding look impressive and grant reporting agencies saw that as a ploy and still reported their grant standings separately.

          As Maryland’s Greenebaum Cancer Center just won a very large multi-year Center grant and has done some cutting edge work on things such as transplants, I think the downtown campus is doing pretty well. Besides, undergrad students at College Park will be able to do internships there, and JHU and the Baltimore campus collaborate fairly extensively now.

          Nemo

    • metatron says:

      Maybe they shouldn’t have kicked out UIC.

  14. sisyphusrocks says:

    so sheer brilliance by Delaney anticipating the impact on bowl venues of global warming. Soon enough NYC will be like a Georgia bowl game

    also, yes the acc is dominant in mens lacrosse like the east coast schools were in womens lacrosse until Northwestern women crushed the country out of nowhere with 5 straight championships. Don’t fool yourself, just because Maryland/Virginia was the seat of power for LAX for decades, wait and see what happens when the big states like Illinois, Michigan, Ohio flip the switch fully to LAX, its already happening in Chicago north suburbs and the power is shifting to all sorts of new schools.

    This is a great investment in a growing and exciting, relatively low cost sport.

    Well done B1G!

  15. bamatab says:

    RTR

  16. morganwick says:

    I’m not sure how the success of the Big Ten in New York City has anything to do with whether we’ll wonder why the Big Ten chased “cable network fool’s gold”. I can’t imagine NYC is that critical to the success of the BTN, especially if we’re talking about a conference with the potential to be the #2 sports entity in America; after all, the BTN launched well before Rutgers or the Pinstripe Bowl.

    Whether or not we’ll remember the BTN as “cable network fool’s gold” will have a lot more to do with things like John McCain’s recent a la carte cable bill. If something like that happens, having NYC will certainly help the BTN, but the Maryland and Rutgers additions would nonetheless look very questionable, because the success of the BTN would now be determined by the overall passion and following of the Big Ten schools, which the Big Ten would have more of than any other non-SEC conference but which Maryland and Rutgers add little to while splitting the pie. How many new subscribers would Maryland and Rutgers bring the BTN if the consumer alone chooses whether or not he wants to subscribe? That’s if “success” would even still be possible, especially given the impact a la carte would have on recruiting.

    • gfunk says:

      I just can’t imagine a la carte diminishing the BTN’s potency. BIG fans are loyal, despite less success in football or basketball, NC wise. The fans will pay for it in overwhelming numbers. The BIG clearly has an advantage similar to the SEC and Pac12 – they dominate their footprint, brand wise & the flagships. Furthermore, the BTN is already in the streaming game & should continue to improve the Internet experience.

      PS I’d love to see a la carte happen, but not so much in the sports world. If this option somehow forces me go down the road of watching delayed Internet games, no thanks. If I can get a suite of bundled sports packages at discount, I’ll take it.

      • FLP_NDRox says:

        I can’t imagine any but the hardcore fans justifying >$1/mo (probably a lot more than a dollar a month considering all the non-B1G fans in B1G states) for third tier football (IU vs. EKU is NOT worth it…unless you’re an EKU fan), some basketball games (B1G third tier hoops are generally more interesting than the third tier football matchups), non-revenue sports, and mostly a lot of rerun games on in prime time (esp. grating is watching reruns of scrimmages). With no chance at first of second tier programming, they won’t be able to command first of second tier pricing…even in the footprint.

        I know this is a B1G site, but I can’t imagine that the BTN wouldn’t be among the first group of channels to go dark in an a la carte world.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          I think both of you are suffering from poor imaginations.

          The reality is that, in its core historic territory, the Big Ten has millions of fans who will pay to see its teams regardless of the opponent, and regardless of the format: à la carte will change nothing, except for the way the money is collected. That is why the Big Ten network won’t go dark.

          In the new markets, where the BTN’s appeal is unproven, it’s hard to know what will happen. I live on the East Coast, and I receive BTN as part of a “sports package” that contains many extra channels that I would never order if they were priced separately. What I’m paying for all of those channels, I’d happily pay for BTN all by itself, a situation that would please Jim Delany very much.

          If access were priced by the game, Delany would make a lot less money from me, since currently I’m paying for BTN all the time, but many months go by that I hardly look at it. On the other hand, there are probably many people who don’t want a full subscription, but would happily buy by the drink, if they could.

          Obviously, new payment models involve new risks, and some of the current players will fail to adapt. But as long as there is money to be made, somebody will be making it, whether it’s the BTN or someone else. At this point, I wouldn’t bet against Delany.

          • gfunk says:

            Marc,

            How is my imagination poor? I think you underscored some of my points, but in finer fashion. I think the East Coast markets with uncertainty are obviously DC & NYC, but we can’t overlook the fact that NJ & Md combine for nearly 15 million people. Maryland and New Jersey natives, generally speaking, will root for their flagship schools & pay for the BTN.

            I’m sure the BIG will figure out a way to package the BTN in a post – a la carte way & they’ll have plenty of time to work it out. No way does a la carte come without a constructive, phase in process.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            @gfunk: What I meant was, of course it’s possible that BTN will be a net loser if coverage becomes à la carte. Anytime there’s a paradigm shift, there are winners and losers. The losers are usually the ones who failed to foresee the threat to their hegemony.

            Do I think that’s going to happen to BTN? No. But can I imagine it? Yes.

        • @FLP_NDRox – You’re a good Notre Dame poster, but I vehemently disagree with that (and I’m not just saying that as a Big Ten guy but just in terms of observing how basic cable works). Remember that a cable company like Comcast is anything but a charity. The entire reason why the BTN was able to get basic carriage at a high rate was because Comcast was getting hit directly on its bottom line during their 1st year BTN carriage dispute as a result of such high demand for the channel in Big Ten markets (as they were flocking to DirecTV that carried the network from day one). There’s no magic elixer that has ever forced Comcast to carry the BTN at a high rate simply because the channel exists. The cable company agreed to that rate because the high demand was there (while very frequently fighting and/or dropping channels where the requisite demand doesn’t exist). It stands to reason that any cable channel that has been able to get basic carriage at a high rate would actually survive fairly well in the a la carte world because that indicates that non-partisan profit-driven third parties that don’t like paying high carriage fees at all (such as Comcast and DirecTV) still deemed them to be essential (which is a VERY high bar to clear). I’m not saying that a la carte is a *good* thing for the BTN or any other basic cable network, but the non-Big Ten fans that hope/dream of the day that a la carte will kill the BTN are completely misguided because they’re forgetting that the legitimate and very real high demand for the channel is what allowed the network to ever get basic carriage in the first place. Frankly, a network like NBC Sports Network (which happens to carry a bit of Notre Dame programming) would be much more at risk in an a la carte world compared to the BTN if it wasn’t already owned by Comcast itself.

        • BruceMcF says:

          In this house, the decision to pay $1 or $5 a month for one or two Buckeyes games that are only on the BTN would be automatic. The killer in the revenue that the BTN could drain out would be when its not football season, since its more an Indians / Browns / Buckeye FB and Reds / Bungals / Buckeye FB household, and neither BBall nor hockey are a big deal.

          • BruceMcF says:

            Edit: (BBall) other than March Madness, of course.

          • Richard says:

            Bruce:

            In an a la carte world, virtually all Buckeye games (besides maybe a handful) will be on the BTN. You’ll have the game of the week on broadcast TV and the rest on the BTN. ESPN would be in serious trouble.

            Also, you won’t be paying by the month but for a year-long package, like the MLB/NBA/NFL season-packages.

          • BruceMcF says:

            ESPN would see a hit in an a la carte world, but OTOH in a lot of households it will be the first addition to the shopping cart, so being in “a lot of trouble” would be a matter of a squeeze between revenue and long term contractual obligations.

        • Richard says:

          Flip,

          I’m afraid that you’re out of your league on this one. Note that the B10 has the most living alumni of any league (4.4M _before_ adding UNL, UMD, and RU), most of whom are willing to pay for a season TV package. Plus you have places like Nebraska and central OH where seemingly every man, woman, and child is a Husker/Buckeye fan. Plus, you seriously think that the vast majority of people in IN will be willing to go without Hoosier & Boiler basketball or MN will be willing to go without Gopher hockey? Finally, when the NFL, MLB, and NBA are charging over $100 a season for their packages, an ala carte BTN will likely be around $100 a year.

          If college sports revenue will come from only the most die-hard fans, the B10 and SEC will be far ahead of the rest. The B10 (with the biggest total basketball attendance & 2nd in football attendance, far ahead of everyone besides the SEC) will certainly not suffer in relative terms.

          • SH says:

            From my personal experience, I kept a higher level package on DirecTV just because it carried the BTN and WGN (I wanted to watch Cub games). However, I finally decided that as much as I would miss a few games, it just wasn’t worth it (besides WGN carries far fewer Cub games than in the past – when I was growing up). Turns out the channels I miss more are the ones I was watching more (a nathional geographic or history). But I have been tempted several times to order the expanded package just to see a specific game. Sports has a way of doing that. My point is that I think the BTN would propser in an ala carte world.

        • Mike says:

          @FLP – Perhaps it would be useful to check out the number of PPV costs and buys for the schools in the SEC or B1G. Before Nebraska joined the Big Ten there was one year where Nebraska played four PPV games at something like $30 or $40 a game . I would be very surprised if you found out only the most hard core fans paid the $120-160 for the four games that year.

          • bullet says:

            If making people pay separately was more profitable than forced carriage, they would be doing that today. You are blinded by your own fandom. If a la carte comes, there will still be a BTN, but it will be less profitable without the 50% non-sports fans and 25% non-college sports fans and 20% non-fanatics supporting it.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Nobody has really tried before. A few bottom of the barrel games on PPV vs the money broadcast/cable has bid to keep the rights is a comparison similar to saying conference networks would be money drains. Bundling creates leverage. Phone, cable, Internet. Buy three tires, get the fourth free. Various packages of TV channels at a discount to what they would cost individually. National sports offerings on a channel (ESPN) > regional/conference in broad attractiveness, but not necessarily intensity of interest in the crossover segment. Similar with conference networks > school specific channels, but inventory becomes the issue. I think major conference’s networks are in the Goldilocks zone. Attractive enough to their base of fans when bundled together that they create enough demand and inventory to survive/prosper in whatever future distribution model is in vogue.

          • Richard says:

            Bullet:

            Maybe, but ultimately, that just means that coaches make less and teams will have to be OK with a decade-old practice facility, since relative wealth is what matters in the arms race. If a la carte affects the BTN, they’ll affect all conferences (over the long term, after current TV contracts run out), and in relative terms, the B10 and SEC will likely be even farther in front of the rest of college football (besides Texas, ND, and maybe OU) in an a la carte world.

          • Mike says:

            @bullet -

            I’m not sure why you think I’m being blind. FLP made the following statement:


            I can’t imagine any but the hardcore fans justifying >$1/mo (probably a lot more than a dollar a month considering all the non-B1G fans in B1G states)

            I pointed out a situation where people were willing to pay much more than a dollar a month ($30 for one game) for much less content. I didn’t think that was controversial.

          • bullet says:

            All the people are saying the Big 10 will make as much if we go to a la carte because they would pay for it. Just because you would pay for it doesn’t mean enough would. As I said, if a la carte meant more money, the Big 10 would do it that way now. They have decided forced carriage is more profitable.

            And the Big 10 and SEC would be hurt more, because they are likely to have the most profitable networks. So they will lose proportionately more. The G5 will gain the most since they aren’t really getting anything.

          • Richard says:

            bullet:

            That doesn’t follow. Even if the B10 & SEC make less than now in an a la carte world, their relative advantage over the other conferences could very well increase because they have more die-hard fans (per-school) than other conferences. You look at stuff like attendance and donations (which consist more of die-hards compared to something like TV ratings) and the B10 & SEC outpace the other conferences even more than they do in TV revenues.

            Mind you, Texas and OU (and FSU & USC & maybe UNC & KU) may be able to keep up with the B10 and SEC if they don’t have to share their a la carte revenues with the rest of their league, but that’s a minority of schools.

            Why would the G5 benefit from an a la carte world? They don’t exactly have tons of die-hard fans, or else they would not be in the G5.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Richard:

            “Mind you, Texas and OU (and FSU & USC & maybe UNC & KU) may be able to keep up with the B10 and SEC if they don’t have to share their a la carte revenues with the rest of their league, but that’s a minority of schools.”

            I disagree with this. In order for anyone else to have enough inventory to drive any kind of demand, even from the staunchest of adherents, they would need to go independent. ND is really the only school that could drive enough national coverage (and perhaps BYU through the LDS) to be acceptable. And both of those schools aren’t primarily driven by the income. Individual school networks simply don’t have the live desirable inventory to drive enough subscriptions for those who are.

            Everyone points to what the LHN is paying (not necessarily it’s true worth), but don’t consider what those rights would be worth if leveraged through a conference network. I recall an estimate that had the P16 happened the 3B primary media deal the P12 got would have been north of 4.5B. A difference of near the whole B12′s primary deal. That leverage would follow to the P16N also, and would likely surpass what the LHN pays UT…for all the schools.

          • bullet says:

            The G5 benefit relatively because they don’t lose anything.

            There’s no question the SEC and Big 10 networks have the most potential if things work out. But that is also an advantage that has the biggest potential to decrease.

          • Richard says:

            Bullet:

            I suppose that’s true, but it really isn’t a benefit. It’s like saying that a candidate with only 100K in campaign funds benefits if his/her opponent only has access to $2M instead of $2.2M. Technically, that’s true, but realistically, the G5 isn’t going to be in the same financial league as the B10 & SEC regardless of whether a la carte happens or not.

          • Phil says:

            bullet-

            “ESPN would lose a lot, but would still be the healthiest network out there.”

            Totally disagree on that one. If you look at what ESPN gets now for its networks, they would need 25% of the country to be willing to pay $30 or so a month for the ESPN family of networks under a la carte just to break even, and they aren’t going to be anywhere close to that. In addition, although they have paid a TON for rights fees, they are structured badly to where if you are not a big NBA fan you could easily go without ESPN from April to August (and nowhere 25% of the US households are big NBA fans). They are in big trouble under a la carte pricing.

            On the other hand, take something like the NBCSN, which people like to rag on. They have a lot of sports with small, niche, but devoted audiences of sports that have LONG seasons. They will be able to do well on a smaller level, because they are not going to need to charge much under a la carte to, for example, recover the rights fees they are paying for August to May coverage of the Premier League. NBC is paying for all of its EPL rights about 50% of what ESPN is paying the NFL for one Rams-Cardinals MNF game.

        • FLP_NDRox says:

          Thanks for the reminder, Frank.

          The more I sit here and think about it, the bigger issue vis a vis a la cart is not just the subscribers, but Fox. If Fox is serious about their networks to take on Disney’s ESPN and ESPN2, they are going to need programming. Where would they rather have revenue sport B1G content? I would think in an a la carte world they would prefer it on a channel they owned lock, stock, and barrel that they were marketing nationally rather than using it on a regional network they only owned 51%. Of course, what I don’t know is what other programming options they would have at that point. I would assume that B1G third tier football and basketball would beat out most but not everything they would have rights to, i.e. what Disney doesn’t.

          The obvious follow-up question would be how the COP/C would handle that kind of treatment from Fox. Would they be willing to pull a P12 create a network/ buy out Fox? It wouldn’t be easy…or cheap, but seeing as how the network’s creation was basically giving ESPN the finger they darn well might. I acknowledge I have no idea how the COP/C would work as network execs.

          As far as the subscribers leaving, it depends on how much the price jump is as to how the channel will do. I would imagine it would do a lot worse if it was at best showing 4th tier football and men’s hoops, third tier women’s hoops, and first tier everything else. As a Notre Dame guy, and a hockey guy, and especially a ND Hockey guy, I would probably be tempted to keep NBCSN, but there’s a limit to how much a month I would pay (and it’s probably less than HBO/Cinemax/SHO/TMC, but I haven’t priced them in years). In a garbage economy, I know I can’t be the only one.

          • Richard says:

            In an a la carte world, all general sports channels would suffer. People would be mostly signing up just for the sports/leagues/teams they follow. ESPN as we know it would cease to exist. Fox would abort their sports channel.

          • bullet says:

            ESPN would lose a lot, but would still be the healthiest network out there.

          • ccrider55 says:

            What legal authority can keep entities from bundling the products they own, or have contractual rights to? Could any such attempt possibly pass legal muster? What could keep the BTN and P12N from entering an agreement that they be purchased as one (assuming the conferences bean counters arrived at an acceptable division of income)? It’s a mater of the market place. We actually are in an a la carte era now. It is simply that market forces haven’t driven every channel to be alone and independent. We do have varying levels of service we can purchase now, a broad form of a la carte.

          • frug says:

            @ccrider

            Congress does. The FCC could also if Congress grants them the authority.

          • bullet says:

            Cable companies have municipal franchises, so they started with a governmental monopoly. Their pricing mechanisms can be challenged on anti-trust grounds even leaving out the FCC.

            Most people currently have few choices. Dish, DirectTV, local cable (usually Time-Warner or Comcast, maybe Charter or a smaller one) and maybe UVerse. In my location its Comcast or bust. There’s no satellite or UVerse service.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Aren’t cable companies/telecoms required to allow competing services? How can there be a claim of monopoly if competing providers exist (satellites/telecoms)?

            Do you live underground? How is satellite not available in an area? (Serious question)

          • Brian says:

            ccrider55,

            “Do you live underground? How is satellite not available in an area? (Serious question)”

            In my case, I can’t get satellite because of trees. I’d need a dish across the street and they aren’t going to do that. For some people in big cities, other buildings block the required line of sight.

          • Richard says:

            ccrider55:

            1. Trees (the eastern US is now heavily wooded; fly over it, and most of the Northeast looks like pre-Columbian forest).
            2. Apartments/condos. Apartments usually negotiate who they will get TV from (sometimes, that results in a great deal; some times not, but your choice is restricted). Condos & apartments tend to have restrictions on whether you can put up satellite dishes or not.

          • bullet says:

            As Brian says. Buildings, trees, hills. To get satellite you have to have a clear view of the southern sky. That’s often not possible in forested, hilly Atlanta.

  17. gfunk says:

    I guess lacrosse is so important that the Capital One Cup considers it a Group B sport. I’m not sure I understand the logic of Capital’s scoring system. They put M. & W. Swimming in Group A, despite the fact that there are far more D1 programs in this sport than Lacrosse, plus it has far more regional crossover.

    Poor Michigan, they’d have the Cup sewn up on the men’s side if not for this odd scoring system. Clearly Michigan has demonstrated more sport’s depth than Duke this year, men’s side.

  18. Hopkins Horn says:

    I originally found this place when I was excited about my alma mater potentially joining the B1G.

    I can now rest in peace.

    • bullet says:

      You can rest in peace since these people are excited about lacrosse?

      When I was growing up, I never knew anyone who played soccer, let alone lacrosse. Lacrosse is very much an eastern thing. There are a few Atlanta public HSs that play it as clubs. But in Texas, I don’t know of any who play it but the elite private schools like St. John’s and Kinkaid in Houston and St. Mark’s in Dallas.

      • BruceMcF says:

        While in Ohio Lacrosse teams see, to be sprouting up in all of the nice suburban schools that first started soccer. The soccer players often prefer it as a spring sport to baseball, because of the higher paced tempo.

  19. marmutia says:

    I assume this tie with the the Pinstripe Bowl will not hurt in future BTN negotiations concerning the YES network.

  20. ccrider55 says:

    I want a la carte hotels. I only want to pay for the part of the bed I sleep on, the one drawer, and the towel that I use.
    Restaurants where I don’t have to pay for the veggies, or the excess silver and glass ware.
    Don’t need to pay for the lanes I don’t drive in.
    Don’t want to pay taxes I don’t see direct return from.

    These are as likely as a la carte cable.

    • bullet says:

      Consumers and competition are going to eventually force more options. It probably won’t be full a la carte, but there will be packages. UVerse or Dish or DirectTV will offer a “family package” or “Entertainment package” without the expensive sports channels and everyone will be forced to follow.

      • Aaron Morrow says:

        But most people want to watch the expensive sport channels. Families can replace channels without live entertainment with other home video options, but channels with popular live entertainment will remain popular, regardless of the distribution system or model. This is most likely to hurt the less popular channels shoved into the a la carte arena, like TeenNick or Cloo.

  21. Wainscott says:

    Methinks that JHU’s wlax team will join if, toward the end of the 5 year trial period, the B1G and JHU decide to make the mlax team a permanent affiliate member of the B1G. A possible way to avoid having to boot the wlax team if things unravel.

    This is separate than the CIC, who I imagine would pull the UChicago rule and allow JHU to remain even if JHU decided to pull its mlax program.

    Food for thought.

    • BruceMcF says:

      It might not. JHU might have settled on a strategic position that Women’s LAX is just their Title IX offset and playing as in independent with a bus league schedule is fine for them long term.

      The other issue the JHU coach or AD mentioned (forget which) was scheduling ~ its starting to get harder to schedule good games toward the end of the season when the conference schools want to put their conference rivalry games on in the warmer weather. If JHU is not as concerned about whether Women’s LAX team schedule makes for a good preparation for the NCAA tournament and good resume to get selected, then that’s not as big an issue either.

  22. Brian says:

    http://espn.go.com/new-york/college-football/story/_/id/9334537/big-ten-team-play-new-era-pinstripe-bowl

    3 things about the Pinstripe Bowl deal stick out to me:

    1. It’s for 8 years, not the expected 6 that other bowls are doing.

    2. “The deal between the Big Ten and Yankee Stadium also will include additional future conference events held at the ballpark, a source said.” What other events would fit at Yankee Stadium? B10 baseball tourney during a NYY road trip? An occasional RU home FB game? Soccer, lacrosse, etc?

    3. It’s in a group with the horrible SF bowl. You can praise the new site all you want, but it’s still a lower tier bowl 2000+ miles away and not in a warm location. SF is a great city, but I wouldn’t choose late December as the ideal time to visit. I don’t think you should send mediocre teams that far for their bowl game. It’s also too many CA games versus the P12.

    • @Brian – I actually think the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl is going to be a nice destination, especially with it moving to the new 49ers stadium. That venue just got awarded a Super Bowl over perennial favorite Miami head-to-head, so it’s going to be a top-notch facility. Unless we actually added another bowl in the Midwest that would truly be a short drive for middle-of-the-pack teams, I don’t think that the distance matters as much as the quality of the destination. (Whether it’s 1000 miles or 2000 miles, it means getting on a plane for most people.) Pretty much the only bowl that I don’t like losing is the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl, but that one was drastically reducing its payout according to Stewart Mandel (while the Kraft Fight Hunger was substantially increasing its payout with its new stadium).

      • Also note that Santa Clara (where the new 49ers stadium will be located) is warmer than San Francisco proper. I’d take that winter climate way over places in the non-Florida South like Nashville, Atlanta and Charlotte.

        • gfunk says:

          Santa Clara is hotter than SF, but only during the summers. In fact it is much hotter than SF during the summer. But, they’re about the same in the winter. Much of the Bay Area is surprisingly cooler than most think in the winter – rarely above 60 & often below 40 from evening to early morning.

          Regardless, the new stadium will be a huge upgrade on Candlestick. It should be a solid bowl venue.

          • ccrider55 says:

            It won’t be on the bay like the SF sites. That’ll be a big improvement.

            I don’t think natives have ever seen a snow shovel, except on the weather channel.

          • Biological Imperative says:

            Having spent the summer within spitting distance of the new 49ers stadium and being from Texas, it aint hot at all. I cannot comment on the winters however.

            @Frank: Lisa Birnbach wrote the Official Preppy Handbook, and also a College Review in the early eighties (follow up in 92) That was absolutely hysterical. Rating things like favorite drug, drinking game, etc at each school. if you can find it, its a 30 year old time capsule of large and small schools.

          • BruceMcF says:

            “rarely above 60 and from evening to early morning often below 40″ sounds like fine football weather.

        • Brian says:

          Frank the Tank,

          “Also note that Santa Clara (where the new 49ers stadium will be located) is warmer than San Francisco proper.”

          It’s 1 degree warmer for the high on 1/1 and 4 degrees colder for the low (57/41).

          “I’d take that winter climate way over places in the non-Florida South like Nashville, Atlanta and Charlotte.”

          They all suck, but the others aren’t 2500 miles away. Besides, Atlanta would be indoors.

      • Brian says:

        Frank the Tank,

        “I actually think the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl is going to be a nice destination, especially with it moving to the new 49ers stadium. That venue just got awarded a Super Bowl over perennial favorite Miami head-to-head, so it’s going to be a top-notch facility.”

        It’s in a pool with the Gator, Music City and Pinstripe supposedly. They could hold it in the Vatican and it still will be a mediocre bowl game. It’s picks 5-7, but that’s assuming a 2nd B10 team isn’t in the CFP or one of the big 6 bowls. The 8th B10 team is not going to be a stellar team and most fan bases won’t be excited about an expensive bowl trip. This will be in the 9 game era, so that team is likely to have an extra loss, too.

        “Unless we actually added another bowl in the Midwest that would truly be a short drive for middle-of-the-pack teams, I don’t think that the distance matters as much as the quality of the destination.”

        Nashville is drivable for several schools. NYC is drivable for at least 3 schools plus it’s home to thousands of B10 alumni. Jacksonville sucks, but it’s in FL and about 1700 miles closer. Lots of groups are talking about creating new bowls. The B10 should start a bowl in St. Louis with the B12 and one in Indy with the MAC and drop Detroit.

        “Pretty much the only bowl that I don’t like losing is the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl, but that one was drastically reducing its payout according to Stewart Mandel (while the Kraft Fight Hunger was substantially increasing its payout with its new stadium).”

        I agree on losing the BWW, and losing Houston is also bad. Overloading in CA doesn’t help anything. Bowl payouts shift all the time and can be a strong driver for the bowl line up, but we’re still talking about a low bowl in the B10′s slate. Even if it pays $1M more per team than the BWW, that’s only $71k per B10 school per year. OSU spends that on bowtie cookies. Playing the ACC in Detroit is also a bad idea. The MAC fans were the only ones that went to the Pizza Bowl, and no ACC fan is going to show up.

        • Richard says:

          Depends on the ACC school. Pitt, Cuse, and Louisville are within driving distance. Granted, they may not go. Plus, playing a MAC school in a bowl fills most B10 fans with zero enthusiasm.

          Playing an ACC school might be worth the short drive to some fanbases.

          I liked Houston as well, but I don’t think that was entirely the B10′s choice.

          • Brian says:

            Agreed, not all bowl decisions are up to the B10. But I know we agree that keeping Dallas but losing Houston is not the best outcome for the B10 in TX.

      • bullet says:

        Miami didn’t approve the stadium improvements, essentially knocking themselves out. So it was basically just San Francisco and Houston going for 2 years. SF got 2016 and Houston got 2017.

    • Richard says:

      “You can praise the new site all you want, but it’s still a lower tier bowl 2000+ miles away and not in a warm location”

      If it pays out as much as the Pinstripe Bowl or Gator Bowl, It’s a mid-tier bowl with higher payout than most other bowls.

      As for warmth, the South Bay has a desert climate, so they get more sunshine and much less rain than SF. It’s cooler at night but figures to be nice and mild in the sun in the day time.

      BTW, from where I am in the Midwest, looking right now, a flight to SF actually costs about the same as one to Orlando and a little bit less than a flight to Jacksonville in late December.

      I think you just like to whine, Brian. I can’t think of another bowl (that’s not in the projected B10 bowl order) that’s willing to take the B10 #5-7 & pays as well as the Pinstripe (and is in a better location). I don’t think you can either.

      • Brian says:

        “If it pays out as much as the Pinstripe Bowl or Gator Bowl, It’s a mid-tier bowl with higher payout than most other bowls.”

        Not for the B10 it isn’t. That’s all that matters. It’s a lower tier bowl for the B10.

        “As for warmth, the South Bay has a desert climate, so they get more sunshine and much less rain than SF. It’s cooler at night but figures to be nice and mild in the sun in the day time.”

        See weather info in my reply to Frank.

        Kayak 12/26-1/3 trip cost:
        Chicago to Nashville – $235
        Chicago to Jacksonville – $347
        Chicago to New York – $296
        Chicago to SF – $382

        Plus, a lot more alumni are in driving distance of the eastern 3 than SF.

    • pioneerlion says:

      Actually late December, Christmas time, is a huge tourist draw time for NYC. Other sports tie-ins with the Knicks and Rangers at MSG, in addition to Rockefeller Center, Macy’s, Radio City, etc. There is lots to do in NYC in late December. Sure it may be cold, but its still NYC.

      • Richard says:

        Right. Late December, Manhattan Midtown is absolutely packed. There’s really nothing like it in the rest of the country (and that’s coming from a guy who’s lived in the heart of the only other American city with a real vibrant big big-city downtown; Chicago).

        • gfunk says:

          I agree, but Manhattan generally has dense foot traffic. Question is, how’s the foot traffic in the South Bronx? Far less, I actually know the answer. South Bronx is also a decent commute from Midtown.

          Btw, SF has plenty of foot traffic, in fact more than Chicago, my opinion. It’s actually a much denser city. Also, LA’s density and foot traffic has become increasingly on par with Chicago. It won’t be long before LA surpasses Chicago’s density & its area is roughly twice the size of Chicago, believe it or not. LA & Houston are shockingly large in area, though the latter was zoned by a bunch clueless, schizophrenic planners.

          I like the Pinstripe Bowl agreement. Screw other conferences who duck out because of the colder weather. I didn’t know the BIG signed up for the SF bowl as well. I like both bowls, BIG teams have better chances of winning either than say bowls in the southeast or Tx against Big12 – SEC opponents.

          The BIG would have a decent lead in Rose Bowls, all time, if not for USC. I think USC & UCLA are the obvious beneficiaries of a Rose Bowl appearance, but match ups become more even against the rest of the Pac12. Interestingly, this SF bowl would be the same sort of advantage USC & UCLA have down south, just exchange Stanford and Cal. Thank God, neither have USC’s football pedigree.

          • Richard says:

            Erm? I’ve lived in both SF and Chicago (city proper as well as the burbs). I love the Bay Area and SF does have foot traffic in places, but it doesn’t have the downtown that NYC and Chicago have. You don’t feel that frisson in the air in SF that you do in NYC or Chicago where there are 10 things going on at once and you could spend the whole day just people-watching out of a second storey cafe from noon to 11PM and not get bored.

            As for density, I’m not talking about residential neighborhoods. There’s just no place in SF like the Mag Mile in Chicago or Broadway in NYC.

          • gfunk says:

            SF doesn’t have Chicago’s vertical density, but there are so many heavy walking areas. SF Chinatown rather comparable to Magnificent Mile in terms of density, of course not towering Skyscrapers, as well as the the piers & parts of Golden Gate.. In fact the piers are becoming a nuisance in terms of crowds, parts of Market Street and the Castro as well. Just two months ago, I found the piers simply too crowded, almost unsafe & returned to my uncle’s place in the Mission. I’m usu in SF a few times a year – family. Chicago at least 4x a year, merely a 7 hour drive, lots of friends and I’m a record collector.

            I’m also quite certain SF has interesting characters. There’s definitely a greater sense of diversity in SF than Chicago.

            But hey now, I’m a huge Chicago fan. I can’t live without doing quarterly vinyl runs to Chicago. My favorite city for record shopping & architectural walks – subway rides. I have to hit the Seminary Co-op at the U of Chicago as well, my favorite university bookstore in the country. I also prefer the CTA over any other public transportation system in the U.S. due to it’s elevation and views. NYC’s subways inevitably make me sick, almost always underground unless you’re in Queens, & parts of Brooklyn & the Bronx.

          • Brian says:

            gfunk,

            “The BIG would have a decent lead in Rose Bowls, all time, if not for USC. I think USC & UCLA are the obvious beneficiaries of a Rose Bowl appearance, but match ups become more even against the rest of the Pac12.”

            Actually, only USC has had a home field edge.

            Rose Bowl Records:
            P12: 48-42-3
            USC: 24-8
            UCLA: 5-7
            P12 – USC: 24-34-3

            B10: 30-37
            B10 vs USC: 6-16
            B10 not vs USC: 24-21

            “Interestingly, this SF bowl would be the same sort of advantage USC & UCLA have down south, just exchange Stanford and Cal. Thank God, neither have USC’s football pedigree.”

            More importantly, they don’t have USC’s fan base either.

          • David Brown says:

            GFUNK: It is not that bad a commute (Try 15 minutes). How? You can take Metro-North (A local suburban Railroad) one stop from Grand Central (Mid-town Manhattan), to Yankee Stadium. Realistically speaking, someone can see a Broadway show (Not my thing but lots of people love it), sightsee at Times Square (One subway stop from Grand Central), and Rockefeller Center (A must during Christmas Season), shop at Macys, have lunch, get to the Game and have dinner at the Stadium while attending, all in about 12 hours.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            Manhattan generally has dense foot traffic. Question is, how’s the foot traffic in the South Bronx? Far less, I actually know the answer. South Bronx is also a decent commute from Midtown.

            Granted, no one walks to the South Bronx from midtown, but who walks to the Fiesta Bowl? Same answer: almost nobody. Yankee Stadium regularly attracts an affluent audience. It is actually easier to reach than most stadiums in most cities, as it’s served by commuter rail and two subway lines. It’s FAR easier to get there than, say, the Meadowlands, or any stadium you have to drive to. No one minds that it’s in the South Bronx.

          • bullet says:

            @gfunk
            You don’t know much about Houston. Houston is NOT zoned. Its said that Odessa, Texas is the 2nd largest unzoned city in the world, so that may be hard to understand, but Houston does it without any zoning at all (You can’t build a chemical plant next to single family homes or an adult bookstore next to a school or church, but other than that you can do pretty much what you want).

          • gfunk says:

            DaveBrown,

            I don’t have an issue with the commute, nor the Pinstripe Bowl & I would likely seek a hotel closer to the South Bronx if say my team was playing this bowl game.

            I think you mentioned in a previous post that you’re a NYC native, thus you may be unconsciously overlooking the fact that a subway commute also includes station entrance-exit times, waiting for the subways, time of day, navigating crowds – there’s plenty of walking and more time spent during these processes. I don’t mind, but just like any commute I consider all of the above. Walking just a block in Manhattan is a lot different than doing similar in my home city (Mpls) & of all the subways I’ve ridden in the world, NYC’s right up there with say Singapore, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Shanghai, or DC – it often seems greater time is spent on getting in and out of the stations.

            But I honestly don’t mind. When I get older, I might : ).

            Bullet,

            I didn’t spell it out in my post, but yes I’m quite aware of Houston’s so called “de facto” zoning – it doesn’t have a formal zoning code like similar cities. But, civic leaders and citizens generally get some say in a development process, and Houston does have geographic borders. The city does use formal neighborhood distinctions (just not enough) & there are certainly wards for governing and policing.

            I think we all have a tendency of reading too much or little into these posts. I don’t have the gift of explaining myself fully in a post (one of my many limitations). Moreover, most of us have never met in person.

            Brian,

            Yes, UCLA does have losing Rose Bowl record, but it’s still their actual home field. That’s not exactly fair.

            Also, I may be wrong here, but I think USC has a losing bowl record once they leave California.

            I do think the SF bowl, whatever it’s called, will be a more level playing field for any conference stacking up against a Pac12 opponent.

          • Richard says:

            “The city does use formal neighborhood distinctions (just not enough)”

            In general, zoning is bad news for a metropolis. They protect entrenched interests (current property owners) at the expense of everyone else and lead to housing bubbles due to artificial restrictions on supply.

          • Brian says:

            http://espn.go.com/blog/big12/post/_/id/67818/big-12-says-goodbye-to-the-pinstripe-bowl

            The B12 found some downsides to the Pinstripe, mainly logistical and weather based.

            Kansas State played in the inaugural game back in 2010 and encountered major snow storms that produced travel difficulties for fans and the team and forced the Wildcats to practice in a hotel ballroom. West Virginia dealt with nearly identical troubles last season and played the actual game in a blizzard.

            The Big 12′s 0-3 record in the game (Iowa State was beaten by Rutgers, 27-13, in 2011) doesn’t help. Difficulty for teams and media to reach practice sites during bowl week also drew complaints, and the open-air press box in a frigid New York December isn’t exactly the product of well thought-out genius. Press box inhabitants have been given gloves and hats for past games.

            Trekking to New York City the week of New Year’s Eve isn’t exactly cheap for teams or fans, either.

            Having a bowl game in Yankee Stadium and giving fans a reason to spend New Year’s Eve in New York City sounded cool in theory. The logistical issues in making it happen, though, produced quite a few headaches.

          • bullet says:

            Houston didn’t have any zoning except for deed restrictions in certain neighborhoods until the last 20-25 years. What goes where is still determined entirely by the market. They have added some density regulations and parking and traffic regulations and some other changes, but zoning has been defeated several times at the ballot box. The city has really only challenged one major development that I am aware of and they lost all the court battles. And the only reason they tried was the neighborhood was wealthy and didn’t want a high rise condo near them and the mayor was running for governor (he lost badly).

            Houston’s planning basically concerns infrastructure, not what type of development occurs. The “schizophrenic planner” is called the free market. It in many ways makes it an easy city. You don’t have to drive 7 miles to find a grocery store, although typically Texas cities use a light hand with zoning. Contrast that to the city of Atlanta which has something like 46 zoning categories, 7-9 of which are for single family residential and you have to get through neighborhood planning groups before you can do anything. There was an article recently saying it took an average of 42 weeks to get a business permit in the city of Atlanta (which is why so much of Atlanta’s growth occurs in their far flung suburbs and you don’t see a lot of small businesses inside the city).

          • gfunk says:

            Bullet,

            I saw the high rise article you may be referring to (Southhampton & Boulevard Oaks). But, If you think Houston is an fine example of an American city planning, or city in general, your standards may need to rise. And despite what you call it, Houston’s planning is poor. It’s filled with surface parking blight, industrial waste, it’s incredibly sprawled and too car oriented, & the city lacks feasible interconnectivity throughout its borders. It also needs a much better public transportation system, which I know the city is attempting to address (good sign). I say the above because there is so much potential in that city. Tremendous diversity and cultures throughout the city, really cool art scenes, big time businesses, and some wonderful universities.

            Please don’t give me the free market crap either. Nothing is free in this country, not in capitalism, nor government processes. If it’s not zoning, it’s something else & that’s why I used the term “de facto zoning”, but the better term is “bad planning”. I engage public-private development processes at least 3x a week. I can’t truly pick a side between private and public, for it’s best when they work together, but the private side too often lacks transparency & of the worst kind. There seems to always be a hidden agenda that bites everyone else in the ass down the road.

            As mentioned, I do find Houston fascinating, most of the people I’ve met there are really nice, the Vietnamese community is especially wonderful, some of the wards have incredibly history – historical preservation, & of course neighborhoods-areas, like Midtown, Montrose, West University Place and the Museum District are always worthwhile. I used to visit annually because my good friend and old neighbor is an art car junkie – “Houston Art Car Parade”. But honestly, I can think of at least a dozen cities and two in Texas, alone, I’d rather visit and live in than Houston. The lack of actual zoning makes the city incredibly blurry to me.

            You’re standards of being able to drive and find a grocery store within 7 miles, versus say Atlanta, needs to raise. Such a comparison is hardly an issue in Minneapolis – Saint Paul, where legal zoning does factor into growth & development & the assurance that rational food choices are nearby. We’re doing our best here to make walkable neighborhoods the norm within the next 20 years. I fortunately live in one, and much of Mpls already has walkable neighborhoods. Also, as it stands now, most Mpls residents are no more than 5 blocks from a park & less than a mile from a grocery store. Our park system is vastly underrated and there is nothing in Houston, wide scale, that compares. And damn it, if we had Houston’s weather, our park system would truly be year round.

            No doubt Tx and many of its cities are booming, but it won’t last & I suspect there will be huge repercussions for Texans in general. You can’t sustain such population growth when the water cycle can’t keep up. The public education system seems genuinely challenged there as well. But I root for Texans to figure it out. They are, after all, fellow Americans & humans.

            PS Zoning is not the restrictive, suffocating reality you claim. In some cities it works far better than others. It’s up to each respective city. Thus, I accept there is horrendous zoning, or lack thereof, just as there is rather efficient and sustainable zoning.

      • Brian says:

        Nobody complained about the Pinstripe Bowl. Or at least I certainly didn’t. My complaint is with the SF Bowl.

    • Cliff says:

      Yankee stadium is hosting a couple of NHL outdoor games next year. I could see Yankee Stadium also hosting a college hockey game in January. Michigan vs Penn State might make the most sense, but I don’t see why you couldn’t also do Michigan State vs Ohio State, too.

      • Brian says:

        Or play an OOC game versus Cornell.

        • David Brown says:

          Bad idea: Cornell does Madison Square Garden every year (Quite well), so they make no sense. In addition, Penn State will be doing Philly (Where they drew 18,000 versus Ohio State), and Pittsburgh. Finally, remember how many people UM drew against MSU in The Big House for outdoor Hockey? For that reason alone (not to mention travel expenses), I bet that when UM does outdoor hockey again as the home team, it will be in Ann Arbor, rather than Yankee Stadium or another neutral site.

          • Richard says:

            The game in the Big House was seen as a rare special occasion. Do it every year, and it loses its luster.

            However, UM vs. someone at Yankee Stadium (Wisconsin? They also get a bunch of NYC kids) would still be pretty special, at least the first time.

          • Cliff says:

            Michigan has played four outdoor games recently – one at home and three on the road. At Michigan State in the Cold War in 2001 kicked it all off. At Wisconsin followed in 2009-10, Michigan hosted Michigan State in 2010-11, Ohio State hosted Michigan in Cleveland in 2011-12.

            While it may not be a huge money maker, it is a tremendous recruiting tool and a marketing tool for the program. If Michigan is invited to play an outdoor game at Yankee Stadium, I would be shocked to see them turn it down.

    • BruceMcF says:

      Brian: “2. “The deal between the Big Ten and Yankee Stadium also will include additional future conference events held at the ballpark, a source said.” What other events would fit at Yankee Stadium? B10 baseball tourney during a NYY road trip? An occasional RU home FB game? Soccer, lacrosse, etc?”

      For Lacrosse, the baseball regular season has already started by the time the Big Ten tournament will be rolling around, so it would have to be an early season classic, while the Yankees are still in Tampa, say mid-March. But the Big Ten Soccer championship game is played after the World Series is finished, so a soccer championship game would work on the calendar.

      • Brian says:

        http://newyork.yankees.mlb.com/nyy/ticketing/soccer.jsp

        They play soccer there during the MLB season. I think a week long road trip would be room enough to sneak in a lacrosse tournament.

        • BruceMcF says:

          How flexible is the American League in scheduling Yankees road trips to suit an NCAA sports calendar? European national soccer teams in the summer between the Euros and the World Cup years would seem like they’d have flexibility to schedule their trip to hit an existing schedule.

          I don’t know what the logistics are for converting the field to a soccer pitch in terms of lead time both ways, but a lacrosse field would be the same lead times. A western road trip would seem plenty of time, if the dates fell right.

          They play the Konica Classic in the Meadowlands at the end of April and draw 25,000, but that is, eg, Princeton vs Cornell and the Irish vs the Orangemen.

          • vp19 says:

            Big Ten lacrosse or soccer isn’t going to Yankee Stadium. I think the most likely non-bowl event would be the Big Ten baseball tourney, which I believe was held this year at the Twins’ Target Field. I could also envision Nationals Park, Citizens Bank Park and Camden Yards as possible future sites.

            For lacrosse, the Ravens’ stadium could be a venue.

  23. Pat says:

    Go Blue!

  24. Brian says:

    http://espn.go.com/college-football/story/_/id/9338542/pac-12-limit-hits-contact-football-practice

    A sign of the times. The P12 is drawing up conference rules that limit hitting in practice beyond the NCAA’s rules. Look for that concept to spread to the B10 soon (maybe not to the SEC, though).

    • Kevin says:

      I would look for the B1G to fight this tooth and nail. Most of the B1G schools recruit developmental athletes. Limiting their practice time of fundamentals/tackling etc… would really hurt the programs and the conference competitiveness.

      Urban Meyer has been outspoken on this issue.

      • Brian says:

        There are a lot of ways to practice without hitting. You can do a lot of of drills with dummies/sleds, run through plays, etc.

        • gregenstein says:

          I agree with Brian. Full contact practice is not necessary 80% of the time. There is plenty of development that can be done without Oklahoma drills.

  25. Brian says:

    With JHU officially onboard for men’s lax, the next obvious question is the CIC. The only relevant report about it is PSU’s announcement as Frank said, and I prefer to see multiple sources for something like that.

    If JHU joins the CIC, it reopens the question of adding CIC-only schools. Obviously the CIC has avoided that so far, but JHU would be a bridge. The UAA schools would be ideal candidates, since Chicago is already a CIC member and JHU is a former member.

    UAA (schools and cities, for those that don’t know):
    Brandeis (Boston)
    Carnegie Mellon (Pittsburgh)
    Case Western Reserve (Cleveland)
    Chicago
    Emory (ATL)
    NYU
    Rochester
    Washington U (STL)

    JHU (Baltimore) is a former member.

    These are smallish (except NYU), private schools that are all AAU members, and they don’t lack for resources.

    Total Enrollments:
    BU 5300
    RU 9700
    CWRU 9800
    CMU 10,900
    EU 12,800
    WU 13,500
    UC 14,800
    NYU 42,200

    NW is over 19,000 and OSU just under 57,000 for comparison.

    Endowments:
    BU $700M
    CMU $1B
    RU $1.6B
    CWRU $1.7B
    NYU $2.8B
    WU $5.3B
    EU $5.4B
    UC $6.5B

    JHU $2.6B

    RU is at $700M and UMD at $800M, but the current members are all over $1B with IA at $1.0B and MN at $2.5B and the rest in between except for NW at $7.2B and MI at $7.8B. In other words, the UAA schools would be a good match in this measure.

    Total research ranking (National/Private):
    19/6. WU
    34/13. EU
    38/16. CWRU
    42/17. RU
    45/19. UC
    63/22. NYU
    82/26. CMU
    172/46. BU

    1/1. JHU

    B10:
    2. MI
    3. WI
    9. MN
    12. OSU
    15. PSU
    25. IL
    28/9. NW
    33. PU
    39. UMD
    47. MSU
    57. IA
    59. RU
    78. NE
    104. IN

    The UAA schools would fit in terms of research money except for Brandeis, and being a top 50 private school isn’t bad. Brandeis is the smallest of the schools, so it should have the lowest total.

    • BruceMcF says:

      Don’t see how the CIC adding a BigTen member puts adding a non-conference member onto the agenda. I think the decision made in the previous decade stands.

      • bikemore says:

        With Delany’s focus on New York, I could see NYU coming in. According to Brian’s numbers, they’re easily the largest of the UAA schools. And unlike most of the others, they have an actual sports history (including decent basketball through the ’60s).

        They also could eventually be part of a Big Ten fencing conference (because fencing allows cross-division competition). Imagine the BTN ratings boost. Incidentally, Hopkins fences too.

        Not really kidding though. In some sense, the Big Ten probably could use NYU to help its presence in New York.

      • Brian says:

        Adding an affiliate member wasn’t really on the agenda until it was brought up by UMD. Suddenly the old decision changed.

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        Both the CIC and the Big Ten make most of their decisions in the shadows, with no obligation to share the process or the reasoning by which those decisions were made.

        For the Big Ten, their decisions produce visible output that receives tons of media coverage, which we can all observe and measure. Most of what the CIC does remains in the shadows, largely out of the public eye.

        We have enough trouble arriving at consensus on what the Big Ten might do about things like rules, expansion, scheduling, etc. And on those subjects, at least the main facts are known to all of us. And there are other conferences facing similar decisions, to which the Big Ten can be compared. For the CIC, we really don’t know what’s important to them, and there aren’t many similar organizations we can compare them to.

  26. Brian says:

    http://www.bigten.org/sports/m-footbl/spec-rel/060313aaa.html

    As was mentioned on the last post, the B10 released the 2015 schedule. All the games flip locations but there are no opponent changes from 2014.

    UMD – MI, @OSU, bye, PSU, @IA, WI, @MSU, IN, @RU
    RU – @PSU, bye, MSU, @IN, OSU, @WI, @MI, NE, bye, UMD

    That’s a tough start for UMD. If they survive until late in the year, the finish is soft. RU has a tough slate in the middle with OSU, WI, MI and NE in 4 straight weeks.

    One interesting note:

    UMD will host PSU at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore instead of at home. This replaces the VT game UMD was supposed to play at M&T, so I think they were contractually obligated to move a game there. UMD’s other home games are BGSU, USF, MI, WI and IN with 2 OOC games not scheduled yet. MI is the other school most likely to fill the place in Baltimore, but PSU’s proximity makes them the better choice. MI at home should make sure that season tickets sell well.

    • Brian says:

      Oops. I also wanted to add that I’m not sure if UMD plans to routinely play in Baltimore. I’m sure they want to get lots of big games at home, too. Maybe when the B10 goes to 9 games they’ll play their 5th home game at a neutral site (DC or Baltimore).

      • Nemo says:

        @Brian

        Maryland generally HATES the idea of playing offsite. My understanding is that the 2015 game in Baltimore was to replace a game that was cancelled (an ACC opponent – VaTech). Two sides to this issue: some want to get Baltimore fans involved while others want ALL the games played at College Park forcing the stadium to increase in size. Lots of discussion on how ticket allotments are allocated and whether Maryland really IS the home team. If the game was turned around, the game would be played at State College which IS the home of Penn State.

        • vp19 says:

          From here on in, I expect any Maryland games scheduled in Baltimore or Landover to be solely against elite non-conference opponents (e.g., Texas at FedEx in 2018). Penn State was shifted to Baltimore to fulfill an agreement after Virginia Tech left the schedule in the Big Ten move, and I predict PSU’s next game at Maryland (either in 2016 or 2017) will take place at Byrd Stadium.

          • Brian says:

            It’s quite possible. I saw some UMD blogs discussing rotating the site for the home game against PSU between Byrd and M&T, but it was pure speculation. I’d much rather see UMD keep home games on campus. If you build up the team again, then you could play a weaker OOC game (Navy?) in M&T instead of at the other school.

        • Brian says:

          Nemo,

          “Maryland generally HATES the idea of playing offsite.”

          When you say Maryland, do you mean the fans or the school or the team? I’d have to think many UMD fans like playing in Baltimore because it’s closer to them and/or they’re Ravens fans. The school probably started doing it for the money and they may be hooked on the extra cash. Maybe it was a short term money grab and will stop once the B10 money is coming in.

          “My understanding is that the 2015 game in Baltimore was to replace a game that was cancelled (an ACC opponent – VaTech).”

          Yes, I mentioned that.

          “Two sides to this issue: some want to get Baltimore fans involved while others want ALL the games played at College Park forcing the stadium to increase in size.”

          Shouldn’t they focus on paying off debt, like from the new luxury boxes, before they even consider expansion? I’d guess UMD is at least a decade away from even considering expansion based on how bad their finances were. They’ll want years of sell outs and time paying off debt and building reserves before starting a large capital project.

          “Lots of discussion on how ticket allotments are allocated and whether Maryland really IS the home team.”

          Well they can always adjust the distribution. The B10 only requires that 3500 (I think) seats be set aside for the visiting team. My guess is UMD gave more to the opponent because UMD fans wouldn’t fill the place.

          “If the game was turned around, the game would be played at State College which IS the home of Penn State.”

          PSU’s stadium seats 30k more people than M&T. That’s the difference. UMD would never play in Baltimore if Byrd held 100k+.

          • ccrider55 says:

            While I think I agree, is it possible that getting the financing to expand in the current economic climate might be less expensive than waiting to pay down their debt? If its going to happen either way, that is.

          • Brian says:

            True, but I think they need proof that expansion is justified. It’s not like they have a waiting list for season tickets.

          • Nemo says:

            @Brian

            I have to agree with vp19 here:

            “From here on in, I expect any Maryland games scheduled in Baltimore or Landover to be solely against elite non-conference opponents (e.g., Texas at FedEx in 2018). Penn State was shifted to Baltimore to fulfill an agreement after Virginia Tech left the schedule in the Big Ten move, and I predict PSU’s next game at Maryland (either in 2016 or 2017) will take place at Byrd Stadium.”

            As for paying off debt, we have luxury suites to fill that were built just before the housing crash. So, if games are played at alternate sites, what point is there in buying a luxury suite? The draw for such “high hitter” perks is to see a premier game against a premier team.

            Nemo

          • Brian says:

            Nemo,

            That’s why I thought they might use M&T for a game like Navy instead, with M&T as the home site for Navy in a home and home series. Play the big games at home to max out Byrd. Do you think a game like UT will draw more than MI or OSU or PSU?

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      That’s a tough start for UMD. If they survive until late in the year, the finish is soft. RU has a tough slate in the middle with OSU, WI, MI and NE in 4 straight weeks.

      I suspect that what drove the league was tryiing to get “king” games into the East Coast TV market in the first 2/3rds of the season, when they’re more likely to get the national network pickup. (In the final third of the season, traditional rivalry games and games with league championship implications tend to predominate.)

    • boscatar says:

      Note that the DC, Baltimore, and New Jersey markets will not just get a heavy dose of the Michigan schools and Ohio St. and Penn St., but they also get Nebraska and Wisconsin in the first two years. Brilliant move for the Big Ten. Although the offset is few marquee cross over games (both Nebraska and Wisconsin miss Michigan, Ohio St., and Penn St.), but the newly expanded markets will get a lot of quality opponents into town.

    • Sam Brylski says:

      For Wisconsin, this means their conference membership is practically on hold for a while. They have no games against Ohio St, Michigan, Michigan St, or Penn St for at least two straight seasons from 2014-15. Which makes the scheduling of Alabama in 2015 and the yet-to-be-finalized attempt to schedule LSU in 2014 make even more sense.

      • mnfanstc says:

        My Gopher “tin-foil” hat says that Barry has been doing some “dirty-work” in the B1G offices in Chi-Town… basically given a free pass to the conference title games with their sked…

        Gopher’s gotta get that Axe back and “spoil” some Badger football…

  27. Brian says:

    http://www.baltimorefishbowl.com/stories/jhu-mens-lacrosse-joins-the-big-ten/

    An excerpt from a letter from JHU’s president to the JHU community.

    The special committee looked into several possible conference affiliations in the course of its deliberations. In the end, Athletics Director Tom Calder and Coach Dave Pietramala recommended that Johns Hopkins join the Big Ten for several reasons, including:

    * We are a good fit with the Big Ten institutions, research universities with whom — in most cases — we already share close connections through the Association of American Universities;
    * The commitment of the Big Ten and its members to the academic success of student-athletes;
    * The opportunity for Johns Hopkins to help to launch Big Ten lacrosse play, including the adoption of competition rules and procedures;
    * The opportunity for Johns Hopkins to contribute to the creation of the league’s lacrosse culture, bringing to bear the experience of our 44 national championships and the traditions and history of the nation’s most successful lacrosse program;
    * The chance to continue a historic series with arch-rival Maryland, which is also joining the Big Ten;
    * The conference’s understanding and encouragement of our desire to maintain as many of our other traditional rivalries as possible;
    * The conference’s understanding and encouragement of our desire to maintain our agreement with ESPNU for national telecasts of all games from Homewood Field; and
    * The strength, stability and resources of the Big Ten, which bode well for the success of its venture into a new sport.

    It also means a great deal that the Big Ten is so enthusiastic about welcoming Johns Hopkins into its ranks. Commissioner Jim Delany and other Big Ten officials and coaches have made it clear that they consider Johns Hopkins central to the league’s strategic decision to expand into lacrosse competition.

  28. eurohooligan says:

    JHU didn’t join in women’s lax because it’s just too expensive for a mainly D-III athletic program with no TV money (other than a modest amount for the men’s games) to finance multiple airplane trips for large squad non-revenue sports like women’s lax. That’s why Hopkins left the UAA some years ago — too many trips to Chicago, Cleveland, St. Louis, Boston without any compensating revenue to pay for it. Being in the ALC meant at least 3 airplane trips a year, with no TV or other conference revenue to pay for it. Being in the Big 10 for women’s lax might have meant slightly lower expense (no Florida or Tennessee trips), but given the large number of potential Middle Atlantic opponents and the relative de-emphasis of the women’s team (compared to the men’s team), independent status for the women’s team made more sense overall. Also, as noted, the Big Ten didn’t need the women’s team, so I think they just left that decision to JHU. And JHU had nothing to gain in terms of exposure, etc.

    If the Big Ten had demanded it, JHU probably would have included the women’s team in the mix. I would have preferred that approach myself, as a fan/alum. But it just wasn’t that important to either side, and I think the travel costs were just too high to include them.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      Wouldn’t the problems you cited, which led JHU to go independent in women’s LAX, have been faced by many other schools that play the sport?

      • BruceMcF says:

        Look at the league footprint of many of those leagues ~ they don’t require much flying. But I expect joining a “lesser league” would grate on JHU alumni sensibilities. Independence allows them to play an east coast bus league schedule.

  29. SH says:

    Obviously this is not as big as a true conference expansion, but it could be a very influential middle step in the way of future expansion. Could certainly be another rung to getting UT or UVA/UNC to join. Time will tell.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      I have trouble seeing that. Obviously, the conference is better with JHU than without. Still, among the factors that would induce UVA/UNC to abandon the ACC, or Texas to abandon the Big XII, it’s pretty far down the list. So far, in fact, as to be practically irrelevant.

      Should UVA/UNC decide to abandon the ACC, it’ll be because that’s best for football and men’s basketball. Sure, they’d be glad to be in a lacrosse league with JHU, but not to the extent that it would prompt a different decision than they’d otherwise make. It’s even less of a consideration for Texas, which doesn’t even play lacrosse.

    • med prof says:

      Bingo. This will matter down the road. As someone in the industry, I can tell you that if JHU to B1G means JHU to CIC then this makes the B1G more attractive to places like UVA/UNC should they jump ship down the road. Sure, the lax is a great fit at the moment, but this has everything to do with the CIC and the hard scrabble of STEM dollars which is currently running the show in higher education (when football isn’t) in case you haven’t noticed. I can’t speak to UNC, but UVA is under enormous pressure to increase its STEM profile and this will matter down the road should either UVA/UNC decide to look elsewhere (I exclude Duke because I don’t see the B1G wanting them for sports reasons when you can get the others).

      • Richard says:

        Duke basketball is a powerhouse, in case you haven’t noticed.

        Considering that Gee mentioned Duke in the same breath as UVa and UNC, I think they’re in if they want in.

        • @Richard – Yes, I never understood how people have thought that the Big Ten would somehow object to Duke. An elite academic powerhouse that is consistently the single biggest national TV draw in college basketball in one of the fastest growing (and most well-educated) metro areas in the country isn’t getting passed over no matter how bad their football program might be. I’ve seen some fairly ridiculous suggestions for Big Ten additions for purely market or academic reasons over the past few years, but Duke is perfectly aligned with what the Big Ten would want in expansion despite being a private school. To be clear, I loathe Duke more than any other sports team (including the Packers, which is saying something for this Bears fan). I’m also far from the only person that loathes them (Grantland had a 64-player NCAA Tournament-style bracket of the most hated players in college basketball history a few months ago and dedicated an entire “region” to only Duke players in order to avoid having an all-Duke final four), so that’s probably coloring a lot of people’s hopes/wishes that Duke would get left behind in conference realignment. That’s simply not going to happen with an institution of that academic caliber that is also to basketball what Notre Dame is to football.

          • frug says:

            The problem with Duke is they don’t really give you anything you don’t already get with UNC. I don’t think they would be a bad addition, I just think if the Big Ten was expanding and could get UNC without Duke they probably would.

          • BruceMcF says:

            Surely ~ Duke would undoubtedly be a 16th, not a 15th. As a 16th, and arguably unlike Pit, it would be gross revenue positive, even though likely not average revenue positive, and average revenue neutral at best.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            The problem with Duke is they don’t really give you anything you don’t already get with UNC.

            Of course they do. For starters, it gives you every Duke basketball game. Duke basketball games are like Notre Dame football games: they’re a huge draw, regardless of the opponent. Duke is also extremely strong academically, better than almost all of the current Big Ten.

            It’s not like Iowa State or Pitt, which give you hardly anything when you’ve already got Iowa and Penn State. Duke is a national brand, and you never have too many of those. I mean, what’s better than having UNC/Indiana on your basketball schedule devery year? Having UNC/Indiana, Duke/Indiana, plus UNC/Duke twice!

            I just think if the Big Ten was expanding and could get UNC without Duke they probably would.

            If you mean that the Big Ten would actually turn Duke down, I think you’re quite mistaken.

          • frug says:

            If you mean that the Big Ten would actually turn Duke down, I think you’re quite mistaken.

            If they are already getting UNC then schools like UVA, Kansas or even Georgia Tech would provide more marginal value than Duke, so yes under the right conditions they would turn them down.

            For starters, it gives you every Duke basketball game. Duke basketball games are like Notre Dame football games: they’re a huge draw, regardless of the opponent.

            True; but the problem is they also give you Duke football games which would detract from the Big Ten’s football value at least as much as they would add to the basketball side, and since FB is far, far more important than MBB that would be a problem.

            Duke is also extremely strong academically, better than almost all of the current Big Ten.

            Academics are a qualifying condition. Either you meet the standard or don’t. How much better or worse you are than the standard isn’t really relevant. Obviously Duke meets the threshold but so do other schools.

            I guess to some up my thoughts on Duke, if the Big Ten is already getting UNC I do think they would try and find other alternatives to Duke.

          • Transic says:

            Well, we are talking hypotheticals, anyway, since none of those major schools are available any time soon. But if we’re talking Duke, then we’re really talking about a #17 or a #18, not a #15 or #16. Remember that Duke/Carolina ARE the ACC. UVa is still sort of tied in to Carolina. Who would be #18? There are a few possibilities: Georgia Tech, Florida State, Miami, Connecticut. If football is more important, we’re looking at FSU or Miami (or OU/Texas if they become available). But we’re looking at going so far south that the regionalists would have a big problem with it. If academics is still more paramount, then we’re looking at UVa/UNC/Duke/GT as more likely the play. But does the B1G really want to go as far south as Atlanta? They didn’t the last time, which makes me doubt they’d want to. So there’s still Connecticut. They’re not AAU but they could be in twenty years’ time. Could Virginia and UConn be the better play? I have no idea but I’m baffled why they didn’t go the last time.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            @transic: Remember that Duke/Carolina ARE the ACC. UVa is still sort of tied in to Carolina.

            That’s the key point: the ACC losing UNC is like the Big XII losing Texas. Once that happens, the conference as we’ve known it is dead, and it’s every university president for himself. That means the Big Ten would pretty much have its choice of schools for #16, 17-18, or 19-20, assuming they want to go that far.

            But does the B1G really want to go as far south as Atlanta? They didn’t the last time, which makes me doubt they’d want to. So there’s still Connecticut. They’re not AAU but they could be in twenty years’ time. Could Virginia and UConn be the better play? I have no idea but I’m baffled why they didn’t go the last time.

            They weren’t going to take GT without a 16th school, and as far as we know, no acceptable 16th was available. For that matter, we don’t even know for sure that GT was available. Beyond that, various Big Ten sources have stressed geographic contiguity as a priority, in which case they wouldn’t take GT without both UVA and UNC, and that wasn’t going to happen this cycle.

            I think UConn would need to be AAU to even be considered. I question whether they could get there within 10 years, which is when the next realignment cycle is likely to happen. I’m sure UConn would like to be AAU, but so do a lot of schools.

          • bikemore says:

            @ Transic- Are you really baffled why the Big Ten didn’t take UConn? If so, I’m baffled that you’re baffled.

            Connecticut has 3.6 million people (compared to 5.9 million for Maryland and 8.9 million for New Jersey). It’s 29th in population, but 42nd in growth rate, so will fall even lower. It also has no football history to speak of, so its base of fans can’t compare with schools that have been playing big-time football for decades. And of course, New England in general is no football hotbed.

            I can’t imagine that the Big Ten will ever seriously consider UConn, AAU or not.

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        Yeah, I think it’s a no-brainer that the Big Ten would take Duke, in the hypothetical that they’re also getting UVA and UNC. Duke is extremely weak in football, but they’re a national powerhouse (practically like an Ivy) in academics and research.

        And of course, they have a basketball team you might have heard of. UNC/Duke basketball is one of the nation’s best rivalries in any sport. The Big Ten would gladly swallow Duke’s weak football team, to get all of that.

        • boscatar says:

          Is this even on the table anymore? Or is it in the 10-year plan?

          I think it would be cool to see a 20-team Big Ten with four or five “pods”, but the rejuvenated ACC seems like it can put some decent product together.

          • BruceMcF says:

            Its 10-20 year plan thinking ~ which is an advantage of the JHU move, building B1G LAX is a nice little side venture right now, and long term the worry UMD had about the future of its Lacrosse program won’t be an issue for Duke or UVA or UNC in 10-20 years time.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          @bobscatar: I think the broad consensus on prior FTT threads, is that the major conferences are now untouchable until their GORs get closer to expiration in the 2020s. Some people think there might be a way out of them sooner, but that’s not a majority view.

          The Big Ten has proven it can be patient: it waited for over a decade with just 11 teams, waiting until the right #12 was available. It’ll wait a decade again, if need be. JHU can be seen as a move in their strategic direction, even if the strategy will take a long time to pan out.

        • bullet says:

          If the Big 10 could hypothetically get UVA and UNC, I’m not sure they would take Duke. They would first have to decide they were willing to go to 18. Then they would have to decide that Georgia Tech or Pitt or Kansas or Missouri was ok as #18. Then they would have to be able to get one of those that was acceptable.

          And Duke would have to decide it wanted to be in the Big 10 if the ACC disintegrated as opposed to dropping football and moving to Big East. TV $ would probably be big enough to make the decision easy, but not necessarily.

          • Wainscott says:

            @Bullet- I agree with you. I think it should be phrased that the B1G would take UVA and either UNC or Duke, but not both. Either one will give BTN sufficient entry into North Carolina. Adding both does little more than dilute the impact of one. We can debate the merits of Duke vs UNC (amount of alumni, relative football success, etc…), but at the end of the day, either would fit very well in the B1G.

            In the same vein, its why the SEC is comfortable with only one Florida school. UF gives the SEC sufficient entry and presence in Florida markets; FSU–a powerhouse in its own right–would not do much inside Florida that UF does not already do, relative to what it would receive in distributions. I mean, that the SEC opted for Mizzou over potentially adding FSU shows that adding markets is the critical driver of expansion; doubling down in a state add enough relative to the equal distributions.

          • SH says:

            Frankly, if the B10 moves to 16 teams, I see no reason why it wouldn’t go up to 18 or 20. I concede that with each additional school you liekly create more instability than with the previous added school. But unless the next two schools are UT and ND by themselves, I think the B10 will always have room to go above 16 just to get a school it highly covets. I could easily see UNC (and UVA) making Duke a contingency on acceptance. That hardly seems like a difficult sell the way taking OSU (with OK) or TT (with UT) would be.

            From a long-term perspective, I think Duke’s basketball program will be more valuable than Nebraska’s football program. Only because I think football is on a slow death spiral in this country. If a president shared that perspective, then it makes sense for the B10 to diversify its sport holdings, which it has done with hockey and lacrosse, and to to strengthen others, baseball, soccer and most importantly basketball.

            This is one of the benefits of the three ACC core universities.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            If the Big 10 could hypothetically get UVA and UNC, I’m not sure they would take Duke. They would first have to decide they were willing to go to 18. Then they would have to decide that Georgia Tech or Pitt or Kansas or Missouri was ok as #18. Then they would have to be able to get one of those that was acceptable.

            I think it’s beyond obvious that in a scenario where the ACC loses UVA, UNC, and Duke, then GT is available. You think it’s at all doubtful that the B1G would take those four in a heartbeat??

            And Duke would have to decide it wanted to be in the Big 10 if the ACC disintegrated as opposed to dropping football and moving to Big East. TV $ would probably be big enough to make the decision easy, but not necessarily.

            Duke has played football since 1895. They’re not dropping football. Do you seriously think that Big East money would be anywhere close to Big Ten money? Like, even in the same zip code?

          • SH says:

            Wainscott – what if UVA/UNC says you either bring Duke along or we don’t go? Does the B10 forfeit Virginia and North Carolina the states simply because it won’t go above 16 or because Duke/UNC will take a spot from another market? I don’t know the answer, but I suspect that both Duke and UNC are valuable enough brands in their own right that you might make that exception. I htink that is a harder question to answer than a scenario where UVA says to get us you have to take VT. I think in that latter scenario the B10 walks. Just my opinion of course.

          • Wainscott says:

            @SH: Certainly, if UNC and Duke are handcuffed, that would complicate matters. If the B1G wants no more than 16 teams, then they might walk and see if UVa will join, and find a different #16 (GT? Mizzou? Kansas after 2027?). If the conference wants to go to 18 0r 20, then having Duke and UNC could be a tremendous positive for reasons unrelated to the BTN (such as owning college basketball).

            I also agree that VT just would be a nonstarter, and if UVa was handcuffed to VT, than the B1G might cast its gaze elsewhere (as Gee mentioned, maybe Mizzou and Kansas once the Big 12 GoR expires) or simply stand pat at 14.

          • SH says:

            Wainscott – I don’t underestimate the standing pat option. My whole point with going above 16 teams is this. If B10 wants the VA and NC markets, and it decides it must have UVA/UNC. I just don’t see a Duke from preventing that from happening. But if Duke went another way and untethered itself from UNC, and the B10 has a perfect 16 team league, well it would certainly open the doors back up to get UT or ND (despite Gee’s comments). So I just don’t think that 16 is a magic number.

            Expounding from my previous comment, no doubt football is the big revenue drive, but there is no guaranty that it will remain that way. As I stated, I am of the belief that football is on a slow death spiral. I’m certain not everyone shares that opinion. But it does offer a rationale to diversify and strengthen basketball where you can.

            My only beef with Kansas is that apart from basketball (and 2 senators) what else does it offer? I say this even though I have advocated that it is a very valuable brand and I have stated that it must be takent care and placed in a power conference for political purposes.

  30. I don’t think that UNC will ever join the Big 10. UNC doesn’t need Big 10 money for research or sports. It gets plenty of both in the ACC. Honestly, UNC would be one of the only schools which could feasibly handle independence in all sports. There are more than enough programs in the state of North Carolina alone that the school could schedule every year (every one of which would play the Heels in any sport in a home and home if offered). Plus, UNC basketball, lacrosse, soccer, etc. are all such strong brand names in their sport that the school could easily fill out its schedules with big time national opponents. If UNC does ever leave the ACC, which I don’t think will happen in our lifetimes, if ever, it won’t be to the Big 10. The vast majority of UNC’s fanbase, and a very sizable portion of it’s alumni base consider themselves Southerners. They don’t want UNC in a Northern Conference, aka the Big 10. UNC fan support is so overwhelmingly in favor of the SEC to the Big 10, that I don’t think it would be politically feasible for the school to go to the Big 10 over the SEC if both were options, and I don’t think the SEC will expand again without UNC. For similar reasons, I don’t think UVA will ever join the Big 10 either, especially if UNC joins the SEC. An SEC with UNC would mean that UVA could be in a conference with the flagship (or at least co-flagship) universities of every former state of the Confederacy, which I promise is more appealing to most Virginians (at least those outside of the D.C. suburbs) than the research money of the Big 10. If the Big 10 really wants to expand it’s market when the ACC GOR expires, I think it needs to focus on schools that are realistic gets culturally, such as Maryland or Rutgers. The University of Miami is the first that comes to mind. Fantastic location, tremendous television draw, likely eventual AAU status, and virtually no pro-southern culture. And even though Miami is in a prolonged slump right now in football, based on its location, tradition, and huge appeal with many South Florida athletes, Miami will be back, and I say that as a UF fan. IMHO, the best move that the BIG 10 could make would be to take UM and FSU (which lacks much of the strong southern cultural identity of other ACC schools) and put both in the West, and move Purdue to the east. That would make for much more balanced divisions long-term

    • SH says:

      Perhaps. But things change. This is why I think the incremental approach of Hopkins may matter. It further changes the identity of the B10 as simply a midwestern conference. The B10 doesn’t have to do anything for now. But if the revenue inequality grows between B10/SEC and the B12/ACC, then the schools in the latter may start looking to maximize their opportunities. Other factors could come into play as well. For Texas, they have already unhooked themselves to A&M. And A&M is rising at a time that UT is falling (football wise). Who knows how this may play into conference realignment. Obviously there is a lot of uknowns in the future. But I know how gravity works. Power is attracted to power. Now maybe they will all just orbit around one another, but maybe they will get sucked in. In a day and age where Rutgers gets invited to the B10 and A&M splits from UT, I think anything is possible. At the end, I simply cannot discount the fact that the B10 offers just about everything a college president and board could wants as far a conference goes (other than location). And it is obviously open to expansion. With Hopkins they have shown they can manuever around a rights contract (admittedly, on a very small scale). The best move for the B10 to make would simply be to be patient until it gets a school or group of schools it really likes.

      • BruceMcF says:

        Yes, and the media market will be a very different place by the mid 20′s. There is no telling whether the coming turbulence will amplify the disparities, leave them where they are today, or narrow them. And even if a conference leadership were to guess right which way its heading, there’d be no big benefit in worrying about it very much until the GOR’s come closer to their expiration dates.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      @Jeffrey: Neither agreeing nor disagreeing about the likelihood of getting UNC, because I am agnostic.

      Every scenario involving UNC presumes a VERY substantial revenue disparity, over time, between the Big Ten and the ACC. In the modern history of conference alignment, no school I’m aware of has tolerated a long-term substantial revenue disparity in its current league, when it had options in a far more lucrative league. If the gap is large enough, no school is going to say, “We have enough money. We don’t need more.” The only real argument is how big the gap needs to be, before UNC considers it intolerable.

      My understanding, is that Swofford was able to persuade the wobbling members that future deals would narrow the revenue gap to a “tolerable” amount. Exactly what he promised, obviously, is not exactly on the public record, but he was able to make it fly. This does not mean the conference is stable if he is unable to deliver on those promises.

      • SH says:

        Marc, that probably best summarizes the whole situation. For those reasons, I think the odds are in favor of UNC/UVA will join the B10. I really think it just a matter of time.

        • Wainscott says:

          Agreed, with Notre Dame as the notable exception.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          Agreed, with Notre Dame as the notable exception.

          That’s why I included the words, “in its current league,” which leaves out independents.

          • Wainscott says:

            @Marc Shepard: Such is the peril of quickly scanning for the gist of an argument rather than reading every word.

    • Wainscott says:

      @jeph: Maybe so, but the composition of both Virginia and North Carolina is rapidly changing. Northerners fleeing high taxes and cold weather are moving in at a rapid clip. The demographics are such that both states might resemble Maryland within a generation–southern in location, but northern in attitude and interests. In such a case, joining a northern conference might very well appeal more to the average Virginian or North Carolinian within 20 years than it may today.

      • SH says:

        Very good point. Ultimately, the B10 and SEC will likely overlap in some states, and I don’t see that as a bad thing. Rivalries are in general good for sports, and this will likely make the conference rivalry more interesting.

        • I agree that perhaps the ACC could get to a point where it is at such a monetary disadvantage compared to the Big 10 and the SEC that UNC and UVA will be forced to jump, but I think that both with choose the SEC to the Big 10. I think that the Big 10 can shed it’s identity as a Midwestern Conference by moving to the East Coast, but I don’t think it will ever be able to shed it’s identity as a Northern Conference, at least in the minds of most Southerners. The problem for the Big 10 and UNC/UVA, (and for that matter Va Tech and NCSU) is that as long as the SEC is an option for both schools, the Big 10 will always be at a huge disadvantage. While I agree that the demographics of both Virginia and North Carolina are changing, I don’t think that 20 years will be nearly enough time to change them into “Northern” states. Florida has had many times the number of migrants from the north, and over a much longer time than Virginia and North Carolina, and Florida is still much more of a Southern State than it is a Northern State. Honestly, I think Penn State and Nebraska, both of whom were in unique positions at they time they joined the Big 10, gave the Big 10 the feeling that they could get anybody that they wanted to join. While the Big 10 is certainly an incredibly desirable conference, which at least 80 FBS schools would kill to get into, there are still a number of schools that would have little to no interest in the Big 10, or would at least prefer another conference. If the Big 10 really could have anyone for the asking, I suspect they would have taken Notre Dame, Texas, Florida, Nebraska, and either Georgia (which I know is not AAU) or North Carolina in that order, not Nebraska, Maryland, Rutgers, and Johns Hopkins.

          As for Johns Hopkins somehow convincing UNC and UVA to join the Big 10, I don’t think that UNC and UVA care anything at all about what Hopkins does. If they did, they could have invited them to the ACC. I do think that Hopkins could be used to lure a number of exceptional private schools which don’t sponsor D1 athletics into the CIC only, which I think would be a fantastic move. For example, if the Big 10 really wants to get into the New York market, NYU as a member of the CIC would be the way to go about doing so.

          • SH says:

            Fans may want the SEC but I doubt the administrators and professors want it. Would be interesting to see what alums want. There is certainly a faction that more easily identifies with the South and one that more easily identifies with the B10 schools. The ones in the latter camp will likely be the ultimate decision maker. But these being public schools you have to convince the fanbase at large to some extent. One way to do is is to show that the B10 makes more money than the SEC. Another way is to make sure the other state schools end up in a good spot – VT and NCSt. No way they end up in B10. So either those schools split with some going to B10 and some going to SEC or they stay together.

          • GreatLakeState says:

            Sorry, but I think you’re letting your bias cloud your judgement. UNC and UVA are two different animals. I agree that UNC would commit cultural Hari-Kari by joining the Big Ten. I can’t imagine under any circumstance that UVA would choose the SEC over the Big Ten.

      • Alan from Baton Rouge says:

        The SEC could offer UVa and UNC an answer to the “Tech and State” problems. I doubt the SEC would work with the B1G and take NC State and VA Tech to enable the B1G to get the schools they really want. The B1G won’t take NC State and VA Tech is probably a non-starter too. The SEC wouldn’t have that problem though. The SEC could offer take all four schools, but add that it won’t take VA Tech without UVa, and it won’t take NC State without UNC.

        That would be a tough offer for the trustees/politicians to turn down, especially when the fans/constituents would be for it. The eggheads might be in a box with an offer like that.

        • SH says:

          Conference realignment really is like a big game of chess. There are so many different moves that cann be made and many depend on your opponent. I just wish we could get to the end of it.

        • frug says:

          Yeah, that would be the SEC’s biggest advantage, and, frankly, the only way I see UVA ever going to SEC if they had a competing offer from the Big Ten (compared to UNC who I could envision preferring to the Big Ten straight up).

        • bullet says:

          The SEC’s biggest advantages are geography and alumni. The SEC is closer to UNC and UVA and there are a lot more alumni in the southeast than in Chicago or Detroit.

          • bullet says:

            Its not so much what the alumni want, but how does the university reach them. CU moved to the Pac 12 because its alumni were on the west coast. FSU’s president liked the ACC because its alumni were mostly in Georgia and the east coast. The Big 10 picked Maryland and Rutgers to connect with alumni in those areas. If UVA and UNC ever decide to leave the ACC, where their alumni are located will be critical.

          • ccrider55 says:

            But how many are in NY, NJ, Maryland, DC area? In ten years that will be established B1G territory (regarding college identification).

          • Richard says:

            Bullet:

            I’m not as certain about UNC, but UVa definitely tends more to send its grads north to the northeastern corridor than south in to SEC country. Same with Duke. These days, that’s probably true for UNC as well. Lots of Tarheels in NYC nowadays.

          • Richard says:

            Granted, the states of NC and SC are very tied together, so the UNC t-shirt fans would strongly favor the SEC. Already, however, VA is more tied to the northeastern corridor than to any place south of it.

          • Andy says:

            I don’t think the ACC will break up. and I don’t think UNC is up for grabs. But if ever they were, the general population of fans and alums would favor the SEC. I would have to think that that would be a major factor. Also, I think the SEC would let UNC bring whoever they want with them, be it NCSU or Duke or UVA or all three.

            I don’t think the SEC expands without UNC. So I don’t think the SEC will expand again. I think it’ll be 14 for the long haul.

    • Psuhockey says:

      You talk cultural fit and then mention UVA going into the SEC? You have a point about states having a cultural identity. This is a fact but if you think people from North Carolina or Virginia have a more kindred spirit with the gulf states because of the Civil War, you don’t know the same people I do from those states. North Carolinians and Virginians, especially Virginians, look about as far down their noses as possible at those from the gulf states. There is southern and there is Deep South. You have a point about culture but you are misplacing it in regards to geography and fans, which in all probability won’t matter. The only culture that matters here is acedemic.

      Academics is a culture onto itself. Most high end administrators travel from school to school, completely insulated from the outside world. Gordon Gee is a perfect example. He went to Columbia then worked at BYU, then West Virginia, then University of Colorado, then OSU, then Brown, and then Vanderbelt before returning to OSU. The Administrations of every major university is littered with these academic nomads, who spend most of their adult life away from the culture of states they work in and strictly in the company of similarly traveled professors and admins. These people collectively look down their noses at anybody without a doctorite. The only time they have any contact with people from the outside world are politicians and well heeled boosters and board members. If you think anybody in that world cares about t-shirt fans and average alumni, who are sadly mistaken. The only letter writing campaigns that matter have checks with lots of zeros in them, which can no doubt dictate a schools conference. The SEC schools and the old Southwest comference schools are booster dominated. The boosters in these areas care about football and nothing else. That is not the case with UVA, who have as much as an academic snobbery as you will find outside the Ivy League. Same with Duke. Those schools wont be joining the SEC over the BIG anytime soon. UNC is slightly different from those schools in that basketball is as important as football is down in SEC land, with boosters to boot. But I find it hard to believe that well heeled basketball boosters would choose the SEC over the BIG, against the overriding support for the BIG by the top administrators.

      This is a conversation to be had in 10 years time. A lot can change by then, but one thing that won’t change is the desires of the average alumni and fans. Unless those alumni and fans are donating 7 figure checks, they don’t matter. In fact, they will be the last to know just like Maryland fans were.

      • I agree that the academics at UNC and UVA would almost certainly prefer the Big 10. However, Notre Dame academics were overwhelmingly in favor of joining the Big 10 in the 90′s, and the school remained independent. If UNC and UVA were not publicly funded state schools, the opinions of academics would matter a great deal more, but that is not the case. If the leadership at Syracuse or Boston College decided to join the Big 10, they wouldn’t have politicians to answer to. UNC and UVA receive the vast majority of their funding from those who are neither employees nor alumni of the schools, but rather the populace of the states. If the legislatures of North Carolina and Virginia decide that those schools aren’t going to join the Big 10 because that is what their constituents (the much derided T-Shirt fans) want, there really isn’t anything those schools can do about it.

        And just to clarify, I do not think that UNC or UVA are going to join the SEC. I think that they will remain in the ACC. What I believe is that both would choose the SEC over the Big 10.

        • Richard says:

          “UNC and UVA receive the vast majority of their funding from those who are neither employees nor alumni of the schools, but rather the populace of the states.”

          If you mean money from the state legislature, that’s actually not true these days. UVa gets barely any of its budget funded by the VA legislature these days (some crazy small percentage, like 5% or something; OK, I looked it up; it’s 5.8%: http://www.virginia.edu/finance101/answers.html). That’s why there had been talk of UVa going private.

          UNC gets more from NC, but state funding is now less than 20% of UNC’s budget.

    • frug says:

      Honestly, UNC would be one of the only schools which could feasibly handle independence in all sports.

      No one could go indy in all sports. It’s not possible anymore. If it were possible Texas would have done it years ago.

      The vast majority of UNC’s fanbase, and a very sizable portion of it’s alumni base consider themselves Southerners. They don’t want UNC in a Northern Conference, aka the Big 10

      Since when do what the fans care matter? I mean the Maryland fan base didn’t seem thrilled with the Big Ten move but they’ll get over it (most of them already have). And in case you didn’t notice, FSU fans weren’t exactly dancing in the streets after they signed the GOR.

      UNC fan support is so overwhelmingly in favor of the SEC to the Big 10, that I don’t think it would be politically feasible for the school to go to the Big 10 over the SEC if both were options

      I’ve never seen any evidence of this.

      I don’t think the SEC will expand again without UNC.

      A year ago I would have agreed with you, but if the Big Ten thinks it can get sufficient value from Rutgers who the hell knows.

      An SEC with UNC would mean that UVA could be in a conference with the flagship (or at least co-flagship) universities of every former state of the Confederacy, which I promise is more appealing to most Virginians (at least those outside of the D.C. suburbs) than the research money of the Big 10.

      You do realize that NOVA’s tend to wealthier and better connected politically than the rest of the population don’t you? Plus, the rest of Virginia is starting to resemble the D.C. much more than the Southern part of the state (just look at what has happened to the state from an electoral perspective over the past decade).

      If the Big 10 really wants to expand it’s market when the ACC GOR expires, I think it needs to focus on schools that are realistic gets culturally, such as Maryland or Rutgers.

      A. UNC and UVA have just as much in common with the Big Ten as they do the SEC. Sure the SEC has geography, but the Big Ten schools are more similar structurally. They are elite public research universities and are far more similar athletically. UVA and UNC both larger athletic departments than any SEC school and a move to the SEC would require UNC to find a separate home for a half dozen of their sports. The Big Ten meanwhile sponsors (or will soon sponsor) all those sports.

      More importantly, UNC as a BB school, is a much better fit economically in the Big Ten.

      B. Cultures change. If you had gone to UMD 30 or maybe even 20 years ago you would have found yourself at a southern school similar to present day UVA.

      • Good points, and I admit I could very well be wrong on my assessments. I do disagree with you on one point. Maryland was not really a Southern state 30, 50, or even 100 years ago, which I think makes a major difference. Also, Maryland and its fans had been discontent with ACC leadership for many decades.

        • I agree that the academics at UNC and UVA would almost certainly prefer the Big 10. However, Notre Dame academics were overwhelmingly in favor of joining the Big 10 in the 90′s, and the school remained independent. If UNC and UVA were not publicly funded state schools, the opinions of academics would matter a great deal more, but that is not the case. If the leadership at Syracuse or Boston College decided to join the Big 10, they wouldn’t have politicians to answer to. UNC and UVA receive the vast majority of their funding from those who are neither employees nor alumni of the schools, but rather the populace of the states. If the legislatures of North Carolina and Virginia decide that those schools aren’t going to join the Big 10 because that is what their constituents (the much derided T-Shirt fans) want, there really isn’t anything those schools can do about it.

          And just to clarify, I do not think that UNC or UVA are going to join the SEC. I think that they will remain in the ACC. What I believe is that both would choose the SEC over the Big 10.

          • Also, I apologize for posting that twice. My computer did something really strange.

          • FLP_NDRox says:

            “However, Notre Dame academics were overwhelmingly in favor of joining the Big 10 in the 90′s”

            I keep hearing this, but it isn’t true. While the faculty senate voted in favor of joining the CIC, and the relatively tiny GSA was also highly in favor of joining, the faculty at-large were split around 50-50 according to all reports and everything I ever heard.

            That is all.

          • Psuhockey says:

            Notre Dame is also a booster driven school much like the SEC and Texas. They are a small private school beholden to donators more so than larger universities.

            As far as politicians, they might be want to appease the constituents in the state who’s primary issue is the conference of the local university but do you know what drives politicians more: money. The ability to bring in research money and the jobs it creates, and thus more tax revenue to spend, is a lot more appealing than pissing off a couple of college basketball fans. Like all politicians, they would probably announce their disapproval and solitary with the average UNC fan then share a toast with Jim Delaney that night. Again the only people who matter in college realignment is the high end administrators, who will want to be associated with similar prestigious universities, and the big time donors. For UVA and Duke, academics matter to everyone associated with those universities. The boosters at UNC could be a different story.

        • Richard says:

          Jeff, you need to read more history (read up more in general). Maryland was definitely a southern state back when H.L. Mencken was writing in Baltimore about 100 years ago.

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        On top of that, I can’t imagine any VA or NC school saying, “Whooppee! We get to be re-united with our old Confederate buddies.”

    • cutter says:

      I’m surprised you said that North Carolina doesn’t need Big Ten money for research (which I assume you mean the CIC) or sports.

      Let’s start with the latter. In the 2011-2 fiscal year, UNC’s athletic department barely broke even. See http://www.wralsportsfan.com/unc/story/9944045/. The department’s revenue was $72.4M with expenses at $72.2M. Among the revenue the UNC AD receives is $7M in student fees.

      UNC supports 28 sports under this budget Per the UNC AD Bubba Cunningham is looking to increase the annual athletic department budget by 40% to $100M. See http://www.bizjournals.com/triangle/blog/2013/04/unc-ad-i-want-to-increase-athletic.html

      So how does UNC get to that $100M, let alone pay for the inevitable increases in expense they’ll incur (their budget was $61M less than five years ago)? Part of it will come from the new ACC television deal, but that’s nowhere near $30M per year. They also talk about increased ticket sales and donations, but with a rather smallish football stadium, there’s not a lot of new revenue you can generate there.

      IRT the former, UNC’s research budget revenue actually went down. Here’s a recent article on the UNC website about the effects of sequestration on their research budget–it’s pretty enlightening. Go to: http://research.unc.edu/sequestration/

      Note that a lot of UNC’s research money comes from the federal government, and in particular, from the National Institutes of Health. UNC’s research dollars peaked in 2010 at $803M and is now down to $767M in 2012. See http://research.unc.edu/about/facts-rankings/research-funding/

      So if you don’t think that UNC would be interested in the CIC consortium vis-a-vis research dollars (especially one that now includes Johns Hopkins), then I think you misunderstand the situation.

      One other very important thing to keep in mind is that the current North Carolina state government’s policy calls for major budget cuts and austerity. NC’s governor is looking at a $139M cut in support for the state’s public university system. See http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887324125504578508981551931820.html

      So why would the Big Ten look good to North Carolina? How does an opportunity to join the most power university research consortium coupled with a conference that is looking at paying its member athletic departments in excess of $40M per year by 2017 look if you’re running UNC and you have a governor and a state legislature that is going to cut your budget even more?

      • Andy says:

        I think it’s funny you guys are still fighting the same fight over UNC and UVA to the B1G or SEC. It’s not happenin, folks. That ship has sailed. Find a new topic.

      • vp19 says:

        Sadly, most people associated with Chapel Hill — despite its status as a top-tier state university flagship — are more concerned with preserving the status of its men’s basketball team. They’ll let everything else at UNC wither on the vine, finances be damned, until they develop a similar passion for football (where the real money is).

  31. Wainscott says:

    Breaking News: OSU President Gordon Gee to retire July 1.

    http://www.dispatch.com/content/stories/public/2013/06/ohio-state-president-gee.html

    • SH says:

      Shocker.

    • loki_the_bubba says:

      Good.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      When they tell you to scale back your public speeches and hire a cpersonal oach, and you’re 69, that’s a pretty clear signal that it’s time to go. He’s obviously a talented guy — you don’t get to run all of those universities without being good at something — but his public comments were increasingly embarrassing.

      • David Brown says:

        There is no question Gee had a big mouth and make stupid anti-Catholic remarks (Of course, Notre Dame’s biggest priorities are 1: Football. 2: Independence. 3: Everything except Traditional Catholic Teachings). That said, Gee cannot be any worse than what we have at Penn State with Rodney Erickson or his predecessor Graham Spanier. I remember when Spanier embarrassed himself and wore the Nittany Lion mascot suit, and after the Sandusky Incident, the Board of Trustees replaced that Lion, with a different species of Lion…. The Cowardly version.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          Gee cannot be any worse than what we have at Penn State with Rodney Erickson or his predecessor Graham Spanier.

          I cannot recall quite so many really dumb things being attributed to Erickson or Spanier, as Gee has blurted out in the last couple of years.

          • frug says:

            I’m pretty sure Spanier saying that Schultz and Curley had his full and unquestioned support right after they were indicted was way way dumber than anything Gee said.

          • frug says:

            In fact, it was dumber than all the crazy stuff that Gee has ever said combined.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            But Spanier was fired very shortly after that, which confirms my point, rather than contradicting it.

            I mean, it’s not as if Spanier made that sort of comment for years and years, and got away with it.

          • David Brown says:

            What about Sandusky in the School President’s Box on the day Paterno “Broke” the record of Eddie Robinson? That tops anything Gee ever did. Naming the “Child Care Center” after Gary Schultz (one of the indicted Sandusky enablers), is another example of this.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            The relevant comparison is stupid public comments, not stupidity in general.

        • loki_the_bubba says:

          @David Brown: “Notre Dame’s biggest priorities are … 3: Everything except Traditional Catholic Teachings…”

          Gotta love the fact that FTT has been invaded by idiots.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Loki:

            That duck roast taste good yesterday?
            Feed enough rice to a duck and it blows up.

          • vp19 says:

            Soon, we’ll see what happens when you feed enough rice to a wolf.

          • loki_the_bubba says:

            Gonna be an interesting weekend in Raleigh, weather permitting. Projections are for TS Andrea to be in the area on Friday.

      • vp19 says:

        Would Gee have been forced out if his comments had solely been about the SEC and Louisville? I tend to doubt it; Notre Dame is still a sacred cow.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          That interview, if you read it, was full of comments he frankly had no business making. Nor is this the first time he has made such comments, and it probably wouldn’t be the last. He’s a walking gaffe machine.

          Exactly what would have been the tipping point? I don’t know. Whether you like ND or not, his comments were an offense to more than just the school, and have no place in polite company. Obviously, if you’re just knocking back beers and wings with friends at the bar, you can say whatever you want. When you’re addressing a larger group and your remarks are recorded, then not so much.

        • frug says:

          The problem wasn’t the references to ND, it was the reference to Catholics in general.

          • BruceMcF says:

            I didn’t see any reference to Catholics in general, just sloppy phrasing in talking about those particular Catholics running things at Notre Dame. As far as I could tell, converting it into a reference to Catholics in general was just normal internet hysterical over the top hyperventilating … not that far different to the reaction in some quarters to the reveal announcement of the XB1:

    • only1halen says:

      Why won’t Julie Hermann follows Gordon Gee’s example!

      • Brian says:

        Because she doesn’t think she did anything wrong? They offered a job and she accepted. Is RU prepared to pay a lot to buy her out? They don’t have cause to fire her.

      • vp19 says:

        And sorry, Rutgers fans, you’re not getting Tim Pernetti back. You need to hire an AD with legitimate experience at a school in a “big five” conference.(and I’m not necessarily saying Hermann is that person).

  32. nickp91 says:

    will now be the case for lacrosse as the B1G Network will certainly be carrying the conference’s contests throughout the country

  33. Craig Z says:

    Go Bucks

  34. Brian says:

    http://www.testudotimes.com/2013/6/3/4390928/conference-realignment-johns-hopkins-to-announce-joining-the-big-ten#comments

    I have no idea if this is true, but here’s a rumor:

    The news out of BIG HQ is a trial period for CIC

    CIC integration is a huge expensive drawn out process. It is a full integration of the libraries, research, and university computer systems. Besides the Google digital library project, it also includes High fiber cables and internet linking all the campuses. For the students this also includes Online distinct classroom and subjects. So a Iowa senior can technically attend a online course or subject at Maryland for instance. JHU trial period kind is put on hold. For now we will have some increased colloboration but no integration for the duration of the 5 years. The hope is after 2 years we will increase and show JHU the benfits of the CIC and within year 4 they will decide early on joining fully. If that is the case full integration to the CIC immediately in the 4th year along with full time membership in the BIG, but in the respect of the D1 teams, kind of like the University of Chicago has.

    by Vortex51 on Jun 3, 2013 | 2:20 PM

    So JHU would be a partial CIC member until they agree to join the B10 permanently, then they’d also become a full CIC member.

  35. GreatLakeState says:

    This threads like a runaway train.

  36. Transic says:

    Delany said he will be at Rutgers on Thursday and Friday, when he is expected to meet with Hermann and Rutgers officials. Reports over the weekend said that Hermann’s meetings with officials this week had been postponed, but a Rutgers spokesman confirmed Monday that Hermann will be on campus.

    http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/college/commish-big-ten-stays-fray-article-1.1362256

  37. jimdelaney says:

    Jim Delaney’s wish list:

    1. Texas
    2. Notre Dame
    3. North Carolina
    4. Georgia Tech
    5. Virginia
    6. Florida State
    7. Duke
    -
    8. Miami
    9. Missouri
    10. Kansas
    11. Syracuse
    12. Pitt
    13. Boston College

    I don’t think the B10 is interested in anyone other than the top 7. I also feel the B10 AD’s/presidents want the B10 to remain contiguous (outside of Texas), so everything hinges on Virginia to move further southward.

    • bikemore says:

      If “everything hinges on Virginia to move further southward,” then Virginia would have to be above North Carolina and Georgia Tech on your list, no?

      • wmwolverine says:

        The most likely scenario is Virginia, North Carolina, Duke & Georgia Tech as a foursome; as Virginia is tied to the ACC pretty tightly and probably only leave when and if NC does too. Yeah, Virginia & GT need swapped around imo. Jim Delaney really wants the Atlanta market but I think the B10 presidents, AD’s pretty much are demanding expansion to be contiguous which is pretty critical for stability.

    • Richard says:

      Yeah. In any case, no way UVa is below GTech. Gordon Gee is pretty connected in the B10, and if he mentions UNC, UVa, and Duke as desirable (and talks of those schools being available if FSU goes to the SEC or B12, it’s a good indication that the first 3 are the B10′s top 3 ACC targets & that FSU isn’t on the list of desirables.

      So the list is really
      1./2. Texas/ND
      3. UNC
      4. UVa
      5. Duke
      6. GTech
      -
      7./8. KU?/Mizzou?

      9+. Some elite research school like Rice, Tulane, Pitt, or maaaybe BC/TCU/Baylor if adding them is the requirement for getting Texas or ND to join.

      Others (doesn’t matter as the B10 won’t want them).

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        One interesting point from the infamous Gordon Gee speech, was that he favored taking Kansas and Missouri, but he couldn’t muster the votes for that. I believe expansion requires a 2/3rds or 3/4ths super-majority, so that doesn’t mean most of the conference disagreed with him. It only means he couldn’t get 2/3rds (or whatever the number was).

    • Andy says:

      1. Texas
      2. Notre Dame
      3. Virginia
      4. North Carolina (not contiguous without Virginia)
      5. Duke
      6. Missouri
      7. Georgia Tech (not contiguous)
      8. Kansas
      9. Pitt
      10. Iowa State
      11. Rice? Buffalo? Who’s left?

      AAU only other than Notre Dame. That means no FSU. No Miami. No VATech.

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        GT is above Missouri on the Big Ten’s list for sure.

        I might even rank Kansas above Missouri, not because Kansas is better, but because it could actually happen. I don’t envision Missouri leaving the SEC, even though they would happily have accepted a Big Ten offer when they were still in the Big XII.

        Anything on the list below Kansas/Missouri is so remote as to not even merit serious consideration. I mean…Buffalo??

        • Andy says:

          Buffalo only because it’s AAU.

          Yes, Kansas is way more likely but less desirable.

          I only ranked GT so low because they’re such a bad fit geographically. Academically of course they are superior to Missouri. Markets, I don’t know. Atlanta’s good, but they don’t carry much further than that. And sports-wise GT is less than or equal to Missouri.

          But I agree, Missouri is highly unlikely to ever join the B1G at this point.

  38. Biological Imperative says:

    Slives\Delaney\everybody’s wish list:

    1. Texas
    2. Notre Dame
    3. North Carolina
    4. Virginia
    5. Duke
    6. Georgia Tech
    7. Florida State
    8. everybody else as filler or requirements for 1-3

    • Richard says:

      FSU’s higher on my wish list, but doesn’t make the cut for the B10 presidents.

      OU is probably somewhere on the SEC list as well. Not all lists will be the same or in the same order.

      • GreatLakeState says:

        Two of the three who were most against FSU, Gee and Coleman are out. I still believe if the B1G expands to twenty, FSU will be included.
        I think the SEC’s wish list would be

        1. Texas
        (Notre Dame won’t join)
        2. North Carolina
        3. Duke
        (UVA won’t join)
        4. Oklahoma (alone)
        5. VT
        6. NC State (if UNC/DUKE won’t join)
        7. WV

        • GreatLakeState says:

          To be consistent, Texas will never join the SEC either.
          I think the Big Ten’s final six will include two from the Midwest and four from the Southeast.
          Controversial as it may be, I think UNC may well join the SEC but not DUKE who will join the Big Ten. Accompanying them will be UVA, GT and FSU. From the Midwest Kansas and Oklahoma, unless, of course Texas is interested. I was not surprised by CBS report that the B1G did homework on Oklahoma (I know, AAU, blah, blah blah)
          The only other possibilities are Vandy (also not surprised CBS named them) or prying Missouri away from the SEC. This ‘homework’ supposedly went well beyond an initial review and I believe the six named in the article ARE the actual targets.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            I was not surprised by CBS report that the B1G did homework on Oklahoma (I know, AAU, blah, blah blah).

            I am not surprised either. It’s standard business procedure to evaluate a broader candidate set than you are actually prepared to consider. Beyond that, I am not convinced that AAU membership is an absolute requirement. If the reports are correct, a large contingent within the Big Ten was willing to at least consider Florida State.

            And the Big Ten took Nebraska while knowing it was at least possible, and perhaps likely, that the school wouldn’t be in the AAU for long. There’s not a whole lot of substantive difference between taking an AAU school that promptly gets kicked out, and taking a good non-AAU school that has never been in the group at all. They wouldn’t stoop as low as Louisville, but a Texas/Oklahoma combo is not beyond the realms of imagination.

          • Richard says:

            “good non-AAU school that has never been in the group at all”

            I don’t think the B10 presidents put OU in that group.

            Going by ARWU, OU is closer to Louisville than they are to Nebraska (FSU, as well as KU & Mizzou, is/are between Nebraska and OU). Rutgers is far above all of them.

    • Andy says:

      SEC Wish List:

      1. UNC – and without them they probably don’t expand
      2. Virginia
      3. Duke
      4. Texas (so unrealistic as to not be a priority)
      5. Oklahoma
      6. Virginia Tech
      7. Florida State
      8. NC State

      Nobody else would really even be considered, and those last 2 are questionable. Notre Dame is so much not a fit that it’s not even worth putting them on the list.

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        UNC – and without them they probably don’t expand.

        I am not predicting that UVA/UNC will ever join the Big Ten. But IF they do, I think the SEC covets the NC/VA markets sufficiently, that in that case it would take Virginia Tech and N. C. State (or Duke, if the Big Ten didn’t take them first). Of course, as long as UVA/UNC remain in the ACC, the SEC will wait for them.

        One could argue that, for a football-first league that doesn’t insist on AAU membership, VT is pretty much equivalent to UVA. UVA is, of course, the flagship school, but VT is considerably more competitive in football.

        • Andy says:

          I’m not sure how valuable NCSU is. Duke could work. VT could work under the right cicumstances. But I don’t think the SEC would make a move unless UNC is joining or is already gone.

    • vp19 says:

      If FSU even gains AAU status (and that probably isn’t happening anytime soon), it would replace Duke in any foursome with UVa, UNC and GT.

      • vp19 says:

        oops…”ever gains AAU status”…

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        I think you’re right about that; however, the question is whether the Big Ten would prefer (in that unlikely scenario) to add six, and if so, then who would the sixth be?

        My guess is: A) Yes, in that scenario they would like to add six, including Duke; and B) Kansas would be sixth. I don’t see ND or Texas in the Big Ten, and adding Kansas would assuage the fears of the western schools that the conference was becoming too Eastern-centric.

        • vp19 says:

          We are, of course, assuming Kansas could break the shackles with KSU, which I don’t think is as much a certainty as some here believe. What makes it inherently different from Oklahoma and Okie State?

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            A lot of folks thought there was no way Texas A&M could split from Texas. The reason it could happen is that the Big XII remained a viable league without A&M. (Yes, it also helped that the governor is an Aggie.)

            With that precedent in mind, I think that Kansas could leave, because they’re not a big enough loss to kill the league. The Big XII could replace Kansas. K-State would still be in a Big Five league, and KU would have upgraded its circumstances considerably. Depending on which schools are available at the time, the Big XII might even be better off with a new school in a new market, rather than having two schools in a relatively small and slow-growing state.

          • ccrider55 says:

            So the Kansas BOT (don’t the schools share a board?)is going to leave KSU’s fate to the whims of the longhorns?

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            So the Kansas BOT (don’t the schools share a board?)is going to leave KSU’s fate to the whims of the longhorns?

            It’s subject to the whims of the Longhorns already. Basically, the Big XII is going to exist if UT wants it to exist; otherwise, it won’t.

            Remember when UT and OU flirted with the Pac-12? KU and K-State would have been relegated to the Big East (along with Iowa State), and Texas wouldn’t have cared They avoided that fate because Texas decided that the Big XII was more aligned with its own interests, not because Texas gave a damn about those schools.

            So if KU has a chance to upgrade itself (and a Big Ten invite is about the biggest upgrade imaginable), and you’re the BOT, you’ve got to say yes. K-State’s fate will be the same as it was before: subject to whether Texas wants the Big XII to continue to exist.

          • ccrider55 says:

            I should have phrased it “So the Kansas BOT (don’t the schools share a board?)is going to leave KSU’s fate to the whims of the longhorns, with no protective cover should the longhorns bolt?”

            We disagree. Whether it would be wise to let KU go its own way or not, much as with OU/OkSU I don’t think they want to, and perhaps politically can’t.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            @ccrider55: If you’re the KU/K-State BOT, your job is to maximize the potential of both institutions.

            If you think K-State is “safer” because it’s in the same league as KU, you’re crazy. In either scenario, it’s dependent on what UT, and to a lesser extent Oklahoma, decide they want to do. They would no doubt be aware of what very nearly happened, when the two kings thought they might join the Pac-12.

            Allowing KU to join the Big Ten would improve KU considerably, while leaving K-State in exactly the same position it would be in anyway. It would be a travesty if they failed to take advantage of that opportunity, assuming it was presented. Maybe they’d mandate that the annual football and basketball games continue. That could easily be done, much as Iowa continues to play Iowa State and Northern Iowa.

            Of course, one should never underestimate the stupidity of politicians, but the Texas A&M case provides a way of understanding how it could work, in a case that was long believed to be “impossible”.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Iowa didn’t play ISU for how many years/decades?

            aTm was the one leaving, not UT (and aTm would have been in no trouble had it been UT). Isn’t the TT problem what kept UT from potentially leaving for B1G membership?

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            Isn’t the TT problem what kept UT from potentially leaving for B1G membership?

            Exactly, but the difference is: if UT leaves the Big XII, then the Big XII (as we’ve known it) probably can no longer exist. That would leave TT homeless (or with a FAR worse home).

            If KU leaves, it doesn’t kill the Big XII. In fact, as I noted upthread, there’s a good chance that KU’s replacement would be an improvement. The Big XII doesn’t really need two schools in a lesser-populated, slow-growing state. By the time this would happen, better options might be available to them.

            The Big XII will exist as long as UT and OU want it to exist, and that doesn’t change whether it has one Kansas school or two. Forcing the two to remain together only means that if the Big XII meets its demise, both schools will be in trouble. If you have the chance to move KU to a better home, you take it.

          • ccrider55 says:

            “In fact, as I noted upthread, there’s a good chance that KU’s replacement would be an improvement.”

            Who? SMU? Houston? Would Rice again crawl out on that broken branch?

          • SH says:

            Kansas and OK are two very interesting schools because I could potentially see them joining the P14, B10 or SEC. And they both have their own Tech problems. There are just so many different scenarios for both those schools. Makes for interesting discussion.

          • frug says:

            @ccrider

            Personally, I don’t think the Big XII would rebuild if KU bolted. I just don’t think OU and UT would consider a Kansas-less Big XII would be worth saving.

            That said, if they did choose to replace them, then they would either go with Cincinnati or UConn or maybe BYU.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            “In fact, as I noted upthread, there’s a good chance that KU’s replacement would be an improvement.”

            Who? SMU? Houston? Would Rice again crawl out on that broken branch?

            No, obviously not. Bear in mind that that we’re considering the scenario 10+ years from now, where the ACC and the Big XII have fallen far behind the Big Ten and the SEC, and the weaker leagues are once again unstable. So you’re talking about any ACC school that the Big Ten doesn’t take, such as Pitt, FSU, Louisville, or Miami. Any of those (and I could name others) get the Big XII into new markets, and they’ve still got the state of Kansas market with K-State. And that’s before we consider wild-cards that might be available and desirable by then, like BYU, Boise, Cincinati, UConn, Utah State, etc.

            You are certainly right about the worst case.

          • Andy says:

            @frug “I just don’t think OU and UT would consider a Kansas-less Big XII would be worth saving.”

            Wow, what an insane statement. That might just break the record.

          • frug says:

            I’ll give you it was a complete butchering of the English language (I really should have learned to proof read my posts by now).

          • Brian says:

            vp19,

            “We are, of course, assuming Kansas could break the shackles with KSU, which I don’t think is as much a certainty as some here believe. What makes it inherently different from Oklahoma and Okie State?”

            http://espn.go.com/college-sports/story/_/id/6937826/board-regents-prefers-ku-k-state-stay-together

            Kansas chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little said last week that Kansas and Kansas State are not necessarily connected should the Big 12 dissolve, but McKechnie said the Board would prefer that the two schools stick together.

          • Brian says:

            http://www.crimsonandcreammachine.com/2011/8/12/2360002/are-oklahoma-and-oklahoma-state-really-a-package-deal

            Legally, OU and OkSU are less tied together than KU and KSU. This article explains how they are governed. There’s a BOR for each system, plus a higher level BOR that oversees all of them but only for academic matters. The final say comes down to the governor who appoints the BOR.

          • bikemore says:

            Read the actual quote from the ESPN article about KU and KSU. The chair–who is, of course, just one regent–stated that “our first hope is they stay together in the Big 12, and until something happens, I’m just not going to speculate on what else there could be.”

            What else would you expect him to say? That the board’s first hope is that the the Big 12 breaks up or that one or both leaves the conference?

            I think it’s much more important that no one was quoted as saying that they NEED to stay together as opposed to the board’s “hope.”

          • ccrider55 says:

            The boss saying he hopes disciplinary measures won’t be necessary is not a weak statement of intent.

            Hope in this situation equals firm desire, intent, and expectation as far as they can influence the situation and its various potentials.

          • bikemore says:

            The boss saying he hopes disciplinary measures won’t be necessary is completely different. The equivalent in this context would be a regent saying he hopes that it won’t be necessary for the board to force KU to stay where they are. He didn’t say that.

            Again, it’s to be expected that the regent would say that he “hopes” KU would stay in the conference that they’ve shared with KSU (in different iterations) for 100 years. But a hope is different from a requirement.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            If you “war game” the options for the combined KU/K-State BOT, here are the main possibilities (of course there are variations):

            1. The Big XII falls apart. Now, if you give the BOT an option where KU/K-State both go to the MWC, or KU punches the golden ticket to the Big Ten, which do you think they’d choose?

            2. The Big XII remains healthy, but KU gets a Big Ten invite. Do the BOT stand in the way of a huge upgrade for KU, just because K-State can’t come to the party? That would be a very irrational decision.

            3. The only tough case, I think, is if the BOT believed that KU’s departure would be the straw that breaks the Big XII’s back. Then, perhaps, they might hold KU back, in order to keep both schools in a Big Five league. I do think this is the unlikeliest scenario, because I don’t see KU as a linchpin school in the Big XII.

            Note that the OU/OKSU situation is very different, because the league probably cannot survive in its current form if Oklahoma leaves. So Oklahoma’s departure (or the threat thereof) would be more like #3 above, where the BOT would insist that the two are linked at the hip.

          • Brian says:

            bikemore,

            I gave a quote that explicitly shows the two aren’t tied together legally. The comment asked what made KU/KSU different from OU/OkSU so I wanted to show what the two cases were. Since you can’t put two links in one comment without waiting for moderation, I showed KS in one comment and OK in the other.

            The OK system is even a looser tie than in KS, but the point was just to show how exactly the schools were tied in each case. It was just for education of those reading the thread.

          • bikemore says:

            Fair enough. My comment was mainly a reaction to previous posts on this board where people have made incorrect but definitive statements that the two are irrevocably tied together (and have even stated that KU wants to be tied). I’m hoping that people look beyond the misleading headline of the ESPN article and fairly assess what was actually said.

  39. Brian says:

    http://espn.go.com/blog/acc/post/_/id/56239/crossover-scheduling-hurt-by-expansion

    A look at the negatives associated with the ACC’s new 6-1-1 schedule. The ACC has released the crossover schedules for 2014-2024.

    For the most part, the ACC got it right with the permanent crossover opponents from the Atlantic and Coastal Divisions. Florida State and Miami might never meet in the ACC championship game, but at least they’ll play each other every year in the regular season. Clemson and Georgia Tech will continue their thrilling rivalry every season, and so will instate rivals North Carolina and NC State, and Wake Forest and Duke. Former Big East rivals Syracuse and Pittsburgh will play every season, and Boston College and Virginia Tech were paired together. Louisville was matched up with Virginia as a permanent crossover opponent when it joins the league.

    For the most part, the ACC kept its longtime rivalries intact and created some new ones.

    But here’s the worst part of crossover scheduling: ACC teams will play one crossover opponent only once in the regular season over 11 seasons, and each of those meetings occurs in the 2020 season.

    BC/VT and UL/UVA seem pointless. They could at least rotate those pairings. Duke/WF isn’t really a big game either, but they are sort of Tobacco Road rivals so I understand why they kept it.

    Playing a conference team once in 11 seasons is ridiculous, and it could be even longer. Schlabach cherry-picked data to point that out, though. The reason it happens is that those games will be played in 2013 (well, those that can be played) which was released earlier, so they don’t happen to play again until 2020. Over the 12 years of 2013-2024 the schedule is balanced. UL doesn’t join until 2014, of course, so they do only play VT once in 11 years (UMD plays VT this year).

    • Richard says:

      BC/VTech and Louisville/UVA actually seem wrongheaded.

      If anything, they should have matched up the school that thinks it’s an Ivy (and sends a ton of grads to the northeastern corridor) with the private school that is by an Ivy located in the northeastern corridor while both VTech and Louisville are both located in Greater Appalachia and are closer to each other. Furthermore, I expect VTech and Louisville to be better at football going forward than UVa and BC as well.

      • Brian says:

        I think they took the lazy way out and simply replaced UMD with UL. Maybe they think BC/VT has become established, but I don’t think anyone cares about that game. Your pairings make much more sense if they insist on locking games.

        • Brian says:

          I think the real problem for the ACC is their hybrid division philosophy. They blended a zipper with a geographical split and got the worst of both.

          Better Zipper:

          In order of locked rivals:
          A – BC, UL, VT, NCSU, WF, GT, FSU
          B – SU, Pitt, UVA, UNC, Duke, Clemson, Miami

          Geographical:

          N – BC, SU, Pitt, UL, VT, UVA, Duke
          S – Miami, FSU, GT, Clemson, UNC, NCSU, WF

          No locked games.

          Better Geographical (more balanced):

          N – BC, SU, Pitt, UL, VT, UVA, UNC
          S – Miami, FSU, GT, Clemson, NCSU, WF, Duke

          Lock UNC/NCSU only.

          • bullet says:

            I’d switch Miami with Duke in your 1st geographical alignment. Miami is so far south in Florida its north. Let Miami/FSU play ooc 4 out of 8 years and play 4 in conference in 8 years. Get everyone else 2 out of 8. Maybe give UNC/UVA same setup. Don’t have any of them play ND in those 4 ooc years.

          • frug says:

            I still the best alignment is modified North-South (i.e. ACC-Big East a.k.a. F*** Wake Forest)

            North – BC, ‘Cuse, Pitt, Louisville, V-Tech, WF, Miami
            South – UVA, UNC, NC-State, Duke, Clemson, G-Tech, FSU

            The only locked rivalries would UVA-VPI, Miami-FSU and maybe Wake Forest and one of the triangle schools.

            Really, I think this best way. Divisional balance is alright, everybody gets equal access to Florida and it best represents the way the teams are natural aligned. Really outside of Wake Forest who would be pissed (but who has no leverage) the school that might have a problem with this split is V-Tech who would probably prefer to be the ACC schools, but I doubt they would make it an issue.

          • Brian says:

            bullet,

            “I’d switch Miami with Duke in your 1st geographical alignment.”

            I was going for pure geography in that one, the KISS approach. I did swap Duke and WF for cultural reasons, but clearly Miami is in the South (just not of the South).

            “Let Miami/FSU play ooc 4 out of 8 years and play 4 in conference in 8 years. Get everyone else 2 out of 8.”

            There’s no way they’d agree to that. Why should they have to play OOC?

          • Brian says:

            frug,

            “I still the best alignment is modified North-South (i.e. ACC-Big East a.k.a. F*** Wake Forest)

            North – BC, ‘Cuse, Pitt, Louisville, V-Tech, WF, Miami
            South – UVA, UNC, NC-State, Duke, Clemson, G-Tech, FSU”

            With 9 games, you might be right. Not with 8.

            “The only locked rivalries would UVA-VPI, Miami-FSU and maybe Wake Forest and one of the triangle schools.”

            That’s what kills it. That means the other 12 teams see FSU or Miami only once every 6 years. 6 teams see VT only once every 6 years. You can’t lock up most of the major powers like that, especially in a league with few big FB names.

            “Really, I think this best way. Divisional balance is alright, everybody gets equal access to Florida and it best represents the way the teams are natural aligned. Really outside of Wake Forest who would be pissed (but who has no leverage) the school that might have a problem with this split is V-Tech who would probably prefer to be the ACC schools, but I doubt they would make it an issue.”

            Miami will object to all those cold weather games, especially since no other southern school will get many of them. The travel for them would be ridiculous, too. VT will be mad at losing several good FB teams, but mostly they just want to play UVA annually. WF would probably insist on locking in Duke and nobody else would object to that (see PU/IN).

          • frug says:

            “The only locked rivalries would UVA-VPI, Miami-FSU and maybe Wake Forest and one of the triangle schools.”

            That’s what kills it. That means the other 12 teams see FSU or Miami only once every 6 years. 6 teams see VT only once every 6 years. You can’t lock up most of the major powers like that, especially in a league with few big FB names.

            I don’t understand the problem. The North schools don’t have any history with FSU and the South schools don’t have any history with Miami so it’s not like they are losing rivalries. And everyone still gets an annual game with either FSU or Miami.

            Miami will object to all those cold weather games, especially since no other southern school will get many of them.

            They did just fine with those cold weather games when they were in the Big East. And the fact that other Southern schools won’t play as many cold weather games won’t effect Miami’s ability to compete for the the division title.

            The travel for them would be ridiculous, too.

            I don’t get this. Even in a straight N/S split Miami is still going to have to fly to all their games. In fact, the actual travel times might shorter than in if they were placed in a South division since BC, ‘Cuse, Louisville and Syracuse are all located in cities with major airports meaning no 2 hour+ bus rides after the plane lands (of the South schools only GIT has a major airport).

          • Brian says:

            frug,

            “I don’t understand the problem. The North schools don’t have any history with FSU and the South schools don’t have any history with Miami so it’s not like they are losing rivalries. And everyone still gets an annual game with either FSU or Miami.”

            They all want to play both FSU and Miami as much as possible.

            “They did just fine with those cold weather games when they were in the Big East.”

            That was a league with no other southern teams. The ACC isn’t. When they have to compete with FSU in recruiting and on the field, these things matter.

            “I don’t get this. Even in a straight N/S split Miami is still going to have to fly to all their games.”

            Playing BC is the same as playing FSU to them in terms of travel? You keep believing that.

          • frug says:

            “I don’t get this. Even in a straight N/S split Miami is still going to have to fly to all their games.”

            Playing BC is the same as playing FSU to them in terms of travel? You keep believing that.

            They would play FSU annually in my scenario…

          • frug says:

            “They did just fine with those cold weather games when they were in the Big East.”

            That was a league with no other southern teams. The ACC isn’t. When they have to compete with FSU in recruiting and on the field, these things matter.

            They were competing against FSU on the field and in recruiting from ’91-’04 and seemed to do just fine. In fact, during their time in the Big East Miami went 8-6 against FSU compared to 3-6 since joining the ACC.

            “I don’t understand the problem. The North schools don’t have any history with FSU and the South schools don’t have any history with Miami so it’s not like they are losing rivalries. And everyone still gets an annual game with either FSU or Miami.”

            They all want to play both FSU and Miami as much as possible.

            Probably true, but if it was a major priority they wouldn’t have had any protected crossovers to begin with. The bigger issue is everyone wants equal access to Florida and annual against one of them.

          • Brian says:

            frug,

            Playing BC is the same as playing FSU to them in terms of travel? You keep believing that.

            “They would play FSU annually in my scenario…”

            They would in mine, too. But they wouldn’t play BC annually in mine. You seem to think they won’t care about whether a game is in Boston or Tallahassee because they fly everywhere, and I think that’s silly.

          • Brian says:

            frug,

            “They were competing against FSU on the field and in recruiting from ’91-’04 and seemed to do just fine.”

            Only head to head. They were in different conferences.

            “In fact, during their time in the Big East Miami went 8-6 against FSU compared to 3-6 since joining the ACC.”

            Miami was better in those days. They’ve been down since Coker. And playing in the same conference as FSU but being in the North while FSU is in the South would be a disadvantage they wouldn’t accept. That’s why they have a modified zipper now.

            “Probably true, but if it was a major priority they wouldn’t have had any protected crossovers to begin with. The bigger issue is everyone wants equal access to Florida and annual against one of them.”

            All that means is they need to split Miami and FSU. It doesn’t mean they should do a N/S with Miami in the N. A zipper achieves the same thing, which is why they did it in the first place.

          • frug says:

            They would in mine, too. But they wouldn’t play BC annually in mine. You seem to think they won’t care about whether a game is in Boston or Tallahassee because they fly everywhere, and I think that’s silly.

            Sure a game in Tallahassee is different than a game in Boston. It’s also different than a game in Durham or a game in Blacksburg. I don’t get what you are trying to argue.

            Only head to head.

            Yes, that is how teams compete. Then, now and always.

            They were in different conferences.

            Yes.

            Miami was better in those days.

            So was FSU.

            And playing in the same conference as FSU but being in the North while FSU is in the South would be a disadvantage they wouldn’t accept. That’s why they have a modified zipper now.

            No. They have a modified zipper because everyone wanted to be in a division with either FSU or Miami ensuring them an annual game against one of the conference’s big guns and giving everyone equal access to the state of Florida.

            All that means is they need to split Miami and FSU. It doesn’t mean they should do a N/S with Miami in the N. A zipper achieves the same thing, which is why they did it in the first place.

            Just because they did a zipper the first time doesn’t mean they have to (or even should) do it again.

          • Brian says:

            frug,

            “Sure a game in Tallahassee is different than a game in Boston. It’s also different than a game in Durham or a game in Blacksburg. I don’t get what you are trying to argue.”

            You claimed that since they fly everywhere, Miami wouldn’t care that the rest of their division were the 6 schools the farthest away from them while FSU got all their nearest foes. I think that’s a silly notion.

            Only head to head.

            “Yes, that is how teams compete. Then, now and always.”

            They can also compete in conference and even in division. They used to be in different conferences, but they aren’t any more. That changes things.

            “No. They have a modified zipper because everyone wanted to be in a division with either FSU or Miami ensuring them an annual game against one of the conference’s big guns and giving everyone equal access to the state of Florida.”

            No, that’s why Miami and FSU are separate. You don’t need a zipper to have everyone in a division with one or the other. They did the zipper because neither FSU nor Miami would accept being stuck in the north.

            “Just because they did a zipper the first time doesn’t mean they have to (or even should) do it again.”

            I never said it did mean that. But claiming Miami would be fine with a geographic split except with them in the North needs some support. When has any person in power at Miami indicated they’d rather play the northern schools than the southern ones, especially if it meant that FSU played the other group?

            If you list the division requirements, it tells you how to split them. If everyone demands to play in FL, then you have to split FSU and Miami. But FL isn’t the only strong recruiting area. Teams also want into GA, SC, NC and VA. That requires a zipper. A zipper also keeps new members from feeling isolated (BE division vs ACC division, essentially). That’s important for conference unity, especially if you worry about losing schools to expansion.

          • frug says:

            No, that’s why Miami and FSU are separate. You don’t need a zipper to have everyone in a division with one or the other. They did the zipper because neither FSU nor Miami would accept being stuck in the north.

            Yeah, that was my bad; I didn’t complete my full thought. After they decided they had to split FSU and Miami the ACC felt a zipper was the only to preserve historic rivalries

            N – BC, Maryland, Virginia, V-Tech, WF, Miami
            S – UNC, NC-State, Duke, Clemson, G-Tech, FSU

            Maryland, UVA and Wake were not going to live with that.

          • Brian says:

            frug,

            “Yeah, that was my bad; I didn’t complete my full thought. After they decided they had to split FSU and Miami the ACC felt a zipper was the only to preserve historic rivalries

            N – BC, Maryland, Virginia, V-Tech, WF, Miami
            S – UNC, NC-State, Duke, Clemson, G-Tech, FSU

            Maryland, UVA and Wake were not going to live with that.”

            Miami wouldn’t have liked it either. That’s why I take issue with your current plan – you still have at least 2 schools that will hate it (WF and Miami).

            North – BC, ‘Cuse, Pitt, Louisville, V-Tech, WF, Miami
            South – UVA, UNC, NC-State, Duke, Clemson, G-Tech, FSU

            It might help to swap UVA for WF while locking UVA/UNC instead of UVA/VT. That would appease WF, but might upset UVA just as much (they’d keep their top 2 rivals, though). That’s why a modified zipper works best for the ACC in my opinion. Nobody loves the outcome, but nobody despises it either. Everyone gets most of what they want.

            In order of locked rivals:
            A – BC, UL, VT, NCSU, WF, GT, FSU
            B – SU, Pitt, UVA, UNC, Duke, Clemson, Miami

            1. Miami and FSU are split so everyone plays one of them.
            2. NC schools are split evenly with 1 locked rival meaning they each play at least 2 of 3.
            3. Rivalries are preserved – VT/UVA, UNC/NCSU, GT/Clemson, FSU/Miami, etc.
            4. Recruiting grounds are spread out. Everyone gets equal access to FL, NC and VA, and they all get SC or GA.
            5. Cold weather/BE schools are spread evenly.
            6. The division are reasonably balanced.

            A true N/S split would work if every school didn’t demand FL access. The N would still have access to MA, NY, PA, VA and NC for recruiting, plus anyone can recruit in FL (B10 does).

  40. Marc Shepherd says:

    The ACC wanted to set up the possibility of a Miami/FSU championship game. Naturally, the football gods took their revenge, and such a game has never happened. With three new schools entering, they should have scrapped the zipper and re-done the divisions from scratch, as the Big Ten did.

    It would take an ACC expert to opine on which rivalries are considered indispensable. But according to Wikipedia, UNC/UVA is the second-most played active annual rivalry in FBS (behind only Minnesota-Wisconsin). I have trouble imagining that they would ever eliminate that from the ACC schedule.

    Of course, schools have killed long-standing rivalries by switching leagues without a partner, but while they remain in the same league, I have to think that UNC/UVA would be contested annually, no matter what the divisional structure.

  41. Eric says:

    I don’t mind John Hopkins as men’s only. Regardless of whether its one sport or two, we are still talking an affiliate membership so being all in or not doesn’t seem like a big deal.

    • BruceMcF says:

      What somebody doesn’t mind and what rubs somebody the wrong way is partly a gut reaction, so there’s only so far stepping through the rational pros and cons can go. For me, I actually would be a bit annoyed if JHU women were in a different conference when there is a Big Ten women’s conference. But I don’t mind it nearly as much if they are playing as independents.

  42. […] all heard that Johns Hopkins is going to the Big 10.  Some folks are really happy, such as the Frank the Tank faithful.  As they should be.  As a preface, there should be no illusion that this is a disaster […]

  43. unproductive says:

    I think that the addition of Johns Hopkins means that the Big Ten is a lot more pragmatic about affiliate membership than most fans had assumed. Johns Hopkins is in for a test period only, it gets to keep its TV contract, its women’s team doesn’t have to join, and it’s not required to join the CIC. However, the Big Ten gets to sponsor a Big Ten lacrosse league with an auto-bid to the NCAA tournament, it gets to market to affluent families that might not otherwise consider a Big Ten school, the BTN gets a bit of a stronger foothold on the East Coast, and the COP/C gets to associate more closely with an academic powerhouse (even if Johns Hopkins never joins the CIC). These positives outweigh the “all for one” mentality that the Big Ten has required for full members, especially considering that this is is for a traditionally non-revenue sport.

  44. acaffrey says:

    The Confidential’s take on the Big 10′s win with Johns Hopkins & lacrosse generally:

    http://atlanticcoastconfidential.com/2013/06/05/lacrosse-the-future/#more-3439

    Look forward to your comments, of course. Here or there.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      I think you’re right, that IF the ACC had a chance at Hopkins, and passed, they made a big mistake. In my view, Hopkins would’ve chosen the Big Ten anyway, but the ACC had nothing to lose by at least trying to make their own compelling case. And certainly, the ACC had points in their favor, had they chosen to make them.

      The comparison of football to boxing seems way off-base. Football is a contact sport with the objective of putting the ball in the endzone. Boxing is a contact sport with the objective of bashing the other guy’s brains. You can make changes to football to make it safer, without changing the basic idea of the game, whereas the very essence of boxing is to cause injury to the opponent. That’s a pretty significant difference.

      Even in its heyday (whenever that was), boxing never had the fan support that football does now. Football engenders lifetime and multi-generational team/fan relationships that transcend the identities of particular individuals (i.e., you’re an Alabama fan, regardless of who’s on the team at a particular time). Boxing is all about the individual competitor. And as you noted, you could pay $50 for a fight that ends in 30 seconds, whereas a football team is guaranteed to offer 3 hours of entertainment, 12+ times a season.

    • GreatLakeState says:

      WSJ (if I remember right) had a very interesting article about the eventual ‘death of football’.
      Primarily, it concerned the growing unwillingness of parents to allow their kids to play football or even acquire a taste for it in Pop Warner. It was a staggering percentage that, unless helmet/equipment technology can assuage their fears in the next decade, could eventually cut off it’s supply line. Couple this with the nanny state tendencies of the government and I absolutely think football faces a long term dilemma. Who, only two years ago, would have believed the Pac would limit contact for practices. People will claim this is ridiculous because of the money involved, but if you think the majority of parents are going to let their kids play a game that could threaten their children’s or teen’s long term health, you’re mistaken. And the research could only get worse. I think ‘football’ has a decade to remedy this problem before you’ll see it’s rapid decline. Not only on the parent front, but colleges will no longer be willing to risk the health of their students (for moral and legal reasons). Delany & Co. are obviously cognizant of this.
      Obviously science/engineers are working hard to solve this problem and I hope they do.

      • GreatLakeState says:

        Here’s the NYT backing up that logic:

        For all of the talk about the physical toll of football, the most imposing challenge for the N.F.L. will be moral issues as parents decide whether their children should play the game. As more studies are completed and more high-profile players experience postcareer complications, the industry and parents are faced with ethical questions: How can football executives continue to sell the game? How can fans continue to watch? And how can parents continue to allow their children to play?

        Here’s CNN:

        Knowing this, and knowing how prevalent and often undiagnosed concussions are at even the lower levels of football (to say nothing of all the other serious injuries accepted as ‘just a part of the game’ in football), why would any parent choose to enlist their child to join these ranks? To volunteer them to have their head smacked around inside a plastic cage? Children have been playing tackle football for generations, yes, but only recently have we become aware of what it’s doing to them.

        This is not some fringe point of view and is already a cause celebre with the chronically outraged.

        • bullet says:

          So where are the chronically outraged with boxing in decline and being replaced by the even more violent MMA?

          I’m not saying there’s not a risk to the sport, but its overstated based on current knowledge. Most of those parents are upper middle class who don’t produce much of the Division I football talent. The top players are disproportionately lower income. Which is why the stipends are such a big deal.

          • GreatLakeState says:

            Because colleges aren’t giving scholarships to kids to participate in MMA. High schools aren’t fielding MMA teams, and MMA pee-wee leagues won’t be popping up any time soon.
            The chronically outraged feed off of lobbying congress (government regulation) or targeting advertisers.
            I absolutely agree that lower income kids will decide to keep playing, right up to the moment that choice is taken away from them. Do you really believe that Washington is going to allow poor minority kids to continue playing a game that they know to be harmful?
            The only way football survives the next twenty years is if they can eliminate concussions.

          • SH says:

            Working against this, football is a very expensive sport, and one that is only for one genders. School districts will eventually abandon the sport due to costs and declining support and out of fairness to girls. Legistlatures will impose additional restrictions. Wealthy parents whose kids play soccer, lacrosse, baseball, and golf will wonder if their tax dollars couldn’t be better spent. This is why I see football dying (or at least becoming less mainstream). It may not die out completely (though that would not suprise me), but it may shrink. I’d say football’s future is unknown, but if I were to wagers, I’d wagers that in 50 years baseball, soccer, and lacrosse are the more popular sports in all the various ways in which you can measure popularlity.

          • Marc Shepherd says:

            This is why I see football dying. . . .

            There’s just no evidence for this at all. Obviously, nothing is impossible: Kodak failed to foresee that film would die, and look at Kodak now. But to reach your preferred outcome, you’re making a vast number of unsubstantiated assumptions, and failing to consider many other possibilities. If you want football to die, then you can resolve all doubts in favor of your prediction, and voila! In your mind it becomes a practical certainty.

          • GreatLakeState says:

            ESPN (of all places) has a great article up addressing why Football is doomed, and why its not.
            http://espn.go.com/nfl/story/_/page/Mag15footballisdead/jr-moehringer-120-reasons-why-football-last-forever-espn-magazine

            11. Buzz Bissinger, Malcolm Gladwell, George F. Will, they’ve all recently declared that football is going bye-bye. Or maybe that’s the wrong way to put it. Maybe what they meant is closer to what George Carlin said about climate change. The planet isn’t going anywhere. We are. Pack your shit, folks.

            12. After all, boxing didn’t go anywhere. Boxing is still here. No, honest, it’s around here somewhere. You can still fly to Vegas this weekend, take in a prizefight. Just be prepared to feel the peculiar enervation of total irrelevance. Boxing, which once stood at the center of American cultural life, glistening arms aloft, now slouches punch-drunk on the tattered fringes. So while you’re seated ringside, watching that fight, which won’t even make the morning papers, and not simply because there are no morning papers, bear in mind: Messrs. Gladwell, Bissinger, Will and others say the same pall of obsolescence should hang over football games, pro, college, high school, peewee. Until the games vanish altogether.

          • SH says:

            @Marc – of course it is just my opinion. Though I don’t think an unreasonable one. Several people have written about the same scenario. But legistlatures are already getting involved. School districts are already cutting it. I may be wrong, and hope I am. I love football, even though I would never let my kids play it. You are right, they are my assumptions, but they are grounded in some reality. The fact is that football is expensive and only going to get more expensive. Teams are big and insurance is going to go up. Tax revenue for football is not going to increase in the aggregate. The supply of players is going to decrease as more parents take the same approach I will take. This may simply just lead to a changing sport and not a dying sport. I really don’t know. But in my opinion, I think it will eventually die out.

          • SH says:

            FWIW – I don’t want football to die, it is not my preferred outcome. Sure I’ll take some “I told you so glee” when it happens since my wife thinks I’m nuts to even think it. I just see too many things working against it.

          • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

            It isn’t about ‘violence’. It’s about the long term effects of continuous head trauma inherent with certain sports. Football is bad & boxing is far worse. MMA is not in the same ballpark as either when it comes to TBI.

          • bullet says:

            I haven’t seen any studies, but I find it hard to believe MMA isn’t worse than boxing. Maybe people get beat up so bad they can’t do it for 20 years. Maybe its just that the sport hasn’t been around very long.

            @SH
            IMO the idea that lacrosse will be bigger than football in 50 years is pretty unreasonable. For that matter, baseball, which is in decline, and soccer, which has never been able to take off as a spectator sport, being bigger than fb seems pretty unreasonable as well.

            Football is a pretty cheap sport for kids to play. Just need an open field and a ball. You can do it with 2 players, although 4 is much better. Lacrosse is more expensive. It and baseball are more difficult to on a sandlot. More players, more space, more coordination.

            My idea, as I’ve stated on here before, is to do away with unlimited substitution. You aren’t going to have as many 300 pounders if they have to play both ways. And if the players are smaller, the damage is less. If they’re slower (and if they play both ways, they will slow down from fatigue) the damage is less.

          • SH says:

            “IMO the idea that lacrosse will be bigger than football in 50 years is pretty unreasonable. For that matter, baseball, which is in decline, and soccer, which has never been able to take off as a spectator sport, being bigger than fb seems pretty unreasonable as well.”

            I admit it is probably only reasonable if you think football will die, which I do. So it is less lacrosse overtaking it and more just fading away.

            “Football is a pretty cheap sport for kids to play. Just need an open field and a ball. You can do it with 2 players, although 4 is much better. Lacrosse is more expensive. It and baseball are more difficult to on a sandlot. More players, more space, more coordination.”

            True – except organized football will become expensive. The insurance will be what really drives the cost up.

            “My idea, as I’ve stated on here before, is to do away with unlimited substitution. You aren’t going to have as many 300 pounders if they have to play both ways. And if the players are smaller, the damage is less. If they’re slower (and if they play both ways, they will slow down from fatigue) the damage is less.”

            These are very interesting ideas. Maybe with some radical changes football will stave off death. But those are the changes that fooball will need to explore.

          • SH says:

            Bullet – I also just believe that 50 years is a lot of time. Football has been king for a long time now. To remain on top for another 50 years would be one great run. All good things typically come to an end. I guess I would just take the field and assume another sport will top it.

          • Richard says:

            “Do you really believe that Washington is going to allow poor minority kids to continue playing a game that they know to be harmful?”

            They haven’t outlawed boxing yet.

          • Transic says:

            Maybe Washington would be better off by dropping its paternalistic attitude towards group they claim to care about. Then they wouldn’t be much hated by the vast majority of the public.

          • Brian says:

            GreatLakeState,

            “Because colleges aren’t giving scholarships to kids to participate in MMA. High schools aren’t fielding MMA teams, and MMA pee-wee leagues won’t be popping up any time soon.”

            Actually, there are lots of youth MMA classes out there and some competitions. It’s growing.

            “I absolutely agree that lower income kids will decide to keep playing, right up to the moment that choice is taken away from them. Do you really believe that Washington is going to allow poor minority kids to continue playing a game that they know to be harmful?”

            They already do. They haven’t banned any sport that I know of, and all sports are dangerous. Youth boxing still exists. Extreme sports are thriving. Hoops sends more people to the hospital than any other sport last time I saw the stats.

            “The only way football survives the next twenty years is if they can eliminate concussions.”

            Bull.

          • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

            “I haven’t seen any studies, but I find it hard to believe MMA isn’t worse than boxing. Maybe people get beat up so bad they can’t do it for 20 years. Maybe its just that the sport hasn’t been around very long.”
            —The long term danger is due to the use of heavier gloves. They help to prevent acute injuries (cuts, fractures etc) but they also expose boxers to many more blows to the brain. Without 8oz gloves two quality heavyweights would be completely unable to sit and pound each other in the head for 14 rounds. Yes an MMA fighter is more likely to suffer broken bones over the short term but over the long term they are going to be less likely to suffer the chronic debilitating cognitive loss that many boxers exhibit.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Catching bullets is much safer than catching RPG’s…

            The big advantage that MMA held over boxing was they would stop the fight much quicker. No ten count, standing eights, proving you could survive being wobbled. That seems to have diminished significantly. I’ve seen many serious beatings go on far longer than they should. Will the public demand and reward the earlier, questionable stoppages to restore some lost safety? Will they stop idolizing the undefeated, and the ability to overcome any damage to remain so?

            Sure, bare knuckle fights were less deadly. Hands break easier than skulls. Elbows and feet don’t.

            We are at the beginning of a 40+ year trial period. Perhaps after that time we’ll have data to support one argument or the other. I just don’t think educational institutions should be involved in the modern Roman Circus.

          • Brian says:

            Scarlet_Lutefisk,

            The counter to that is that MMA athlete get kneed, kicked and elbowed in the head regularly. Those are heavier blows than any gloved punch and do more damage internally. They also get punched in the head while on the ground, so they get double hit (fist to face, back of head to mat). To top it off, they get choked unconscious too so the brain is being deprived of oxygen.

      • Brian says:

        GLS,

        Suburban parents may be doing this, but I doubt poor families in football hotbeds are. Football is still the ticket out of poverty for many kids and their parents will encourage them to play. Rural areas also are less likely to follow this trend.

        For all the talk about the dangers of sports, people are generally pretty clueless about the facts. Rugby is a growing sport and it hits just as hard as football. MMA is replacing boxing and it’s equally risky. Studies have shown repeated headers to also cause brain damage but soccer is thriving. Hockey helmets are less effective than football helmets but youth hockey thrives and every player ditches their full face mask as soon as they turn 18 or leave college. Extreme sports are growing tremendously and they’re all very dangerous.

        Newsflash: All sports are dangerous. Moving fast means a lot of inertia and a forced stop or rapid change of direction means potential injury, to the brain and elsewhere.

        • GreatLakeState says:

          “The only way football survives the next twenty years is if they can eliminate concussions.”

          Bull.

          What a typical nothing answer from the human drone.

          • Brian says:

            A silly statement like that deserves a simple answer. Not a single sport can eliminate concussions, and none of them will disappear in 20 years.

            http://www.momsteam.com/softball/concussion-in-high-school-sports-rising-fifteen-percent-new-study-finds

            A study of concussions in HS sports in VA. The second most “dangerous” sport was girls’ soccer. Is soccer also going to disappear in 20 years?

            Concussions per 1000 Athletic Exposure (game, practice, etc per player)
            Boys:
            1. Football – 0.60
            2. Lacrosse – 0.30
            3. Soccer – 0.17
            4. Wrestling – 0.17
            5. Basketball – 0.10
            6. Baseball – 0.06

            Girls:
            1. Soccer – 0.35
            2. Lacrosse – 0.20
            3. Basketball – 0.16
            4. Softball – 0.11
            5. Field hockey – 0.10
            6. Cheerleading – 0.06

            Being a VA study, hockey isn’t on the list. Neither is rugby, a growing college sport.

            If concussions are going to kill football, then soccer and lacrosse and maybe hockey will also have to die. All rational people know that is not going to happen, though.

          • mnfanstc says:

            Rationality has to come into play regarding concussions/injuries in general when playing sports.

            One underlying problem is our media and our government seem to think that it is their responsibility to educate/regulate/dictate what we as individuals should and shouldn’t do.

            Of course, a lot of this “education” is sold via emotion—hence, young, suburban house-wives are scared their little Johnny or Julie is going to be forever scarred if they play any “violent” sports… “Violent” being defined by the “self-proclaimed/media-proclaimed” expert of the day…

            No more nanny state B.S. please…

            I survived without a bicycle helmet, I survived football, I survived wrestling, I survived my teens and twenties… We all do really stupid stuff—sometimes we get lucky, sometimes not-so-much…

            If life is to be lived—there is inherent risk…

    • ccrider55 says:

      “And look where college football is headed… from all-over-the-air networks to ESPN, and then ESPN to conferences having their own networks. The money is starting to change access to sports.”

      This is a big part of my disappointment with the mainstream (ESPN, Fox) becoming part or full owners of supposedly school or conference networks. The non monetary benefit, that can legitimately be claimed as important by schools, is unimportant to them. Making money directly and quickly is the goal of a quarterly profit driven business.

      I’m not sure lax will fare any better than hockey for the general sports fan on TV. They both have a very small ball/puck in a fast moving game. It’s not like following a basketball, or even a football. Both are easy, and in FB there are breaks after every five or ten seconds of action to reset the frame of reference if you did lose track. I’m one of the odd ones who actually appreciated the glowing puck (but not the tracer) precisely for that reason. I think a newer, improved, more discrete tracking method could make both sports as easy to follow the action on TV as mainstream sports.

      • vp19 says:

        High-definition TV has made hockey a far better viewing experience, and the same improvement may apply to lacrosse.

        • GreatLakeState says:

          Good point.

        • ccrider55 says:

          True, but its not completely easy for the non hockey fan. Rather than a glowing, larger circular overlay I’d like to see if a fairly bright pinpoint (perhaps a strobe at 30 to 45 cycles/second, or not) would assist without being distracting.

      • GreatLakeState says:

        I agree with you, but those partnerships may be imperative to a nationwide network. The PAC12 network will tell the tale.

      • acaffrey says:

        I think hockey and lacrosse could benefit from that camera that they have for football– I forget the full name–the camera that moves on wires. Imagine being able to watch the attack flow from an angle like that. Moreover, there are few passes that are high enough to trip that camera. And none in hockey. But being able to see the play facing the goalie, rather than from the side or the perspective of the goalie might be helpful. And maybe 3-D TVs will help.

        Who knows?

        The point was not that football would disappear, but that the erosion of football support may be replaced by lacrosse. Instead of revenue being 80%football/20%basketball, maybe it becomes 65%/25%/10% lacrosse. If so, great move by the Big 10 to get JHU.

        Also, TV viewership is also impacted by people watching live. Not a causal relationship. If lacrosse game attendance goes from 5,000 to 20,000… that makes it a lot more likely to generate TV interest. Lacrosse is played in stadiums with greater capacity than basketball.
        Did anyone in the 1960′s think that a Final Four would be played in a Dome? You just never know where things go in a generation or two.

        • bullet says:

          1968 Astrodome sellout-UCLA vs. Houston.

          You can never say never, but if lacrosse attendance went from 5,000 to 6,000 that would be a major accomplishment. Its a small niche upper middle class/wealthy east coast sport that has as much potential upside as rugby and less than ultimate.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Eeeeeee!!!

            Aaaaaaa!

            The birth of the goggles in BB was precipitated by Hays elbow catching Alcindor’s eye that day.

          • boscatar says:

            A ton of kids are now playing lacrosse in Oregon and Utah. I could see lacrosse making a long-term push somewhere along the lines of 72%/18%/10%.

        • SH says:

          I think that is right. In the future, the concentration of revenue will not be all tied up in one sport. I’d be concerned that football may be a dying product. Like any other business venture, you have to find new products and revenue streams. The B10 seems to be the most forward-thinking conference in this regard.

        • GreatLakeState says:

          Then again,
          Pele signed with the Cosmos? Soccer is going to be huge in the US!
          Beck signed with the Galaxy? Soccer is going to be huge in the US!

          • acaffrey says:

            Soccer is just never going to be big here. We like offense.

            Basketball–shot clock. Baseball–PEDs. Football–nearly every rule is pro-offense.

            Lacrosse offense > soccer offense. By quite a bit.

          • SH says:

            I’d say soccer is huge (maybe big reserving huge for the big 3) in the US. It has an expanding league that does not appear to be in trouble in any way. ESPN is paying a lot of money for foreign league broadcasts. It has not overtaken the big 3, but it is doing well enough and will likely only grow.

          • SH says:

            @acaffrey – Right now soccer is biggers than lacrosse. But lacrosse could quickly overtake soccers. As you say, their is far more offense, plus it offers some contact. I think also because it is uniquely American, which will appeal to our independent streak.

          • Transic says:

            I’ve never understood this attitude about soccer. I don’t know how big it could get but it has its believers. The US game against Germany this Sunday sold out. More over, the women’s team game against Canada in Toronto sold out minutes after tickets went on sale.

          • BruceMcF says:

            If you benchmark every sport against the wildest predictions of its most naive supporters, every sport will be a litany of failure to meet those wild projections. As far as realistic expectations, soccer is now the fifth team sport by value in the US, so either the biggest or second biggest of the second tier, depending on whether you put hockey at the bottom of the first tier or top of the second tier.

            There are two big differences between College Lacrosse and College Soccer that stand to the benefit of LAX. First, Soccer is a Fall Sport while Lacrosse is a Spring Sport. College Football castes a much bigger and darker shadow on College Soccer than College Baseball casts on College Lacrosse. Second, College Soccer is much further from the top ranks of the sport, since the US professional league is more or less a AAA or AA minor league in the world of soccer, with the “majors” being played in England, Italy, Spain and Brazil ~ the more generous you are about some other leagues being top tier leagues the better the claim MLS has to being second tier. And College is not the only development ladder, with paid development ladders both with the semi-pro leagues in the US and, for same, the option of going overseas and seeking a place in big money club’s development system.

          • bullet says:

            @Accafrey
            I agree. The slow pace of baseball was better suited to a different era. Soccer’s low scoring condemns it to the 2nd tier.

            Basketball is the sport that could overtake football, but has the disadvantage of fewer players and requiring genetic advantages (Calvin Murphy and Spud Webb are once in a generation players-shorter fb players are much more common).

          • Cliff says:

            Soccer is still growing at the youth and high school level, but it is pretty saturated. Lacrosse has fewer teams and schools, but the growth is booming. But just because the kids are playing doesn’t mean that they will automatically start watching MLS or EPL, or attending MLS games. Same thing with watching/attending college/pro lax.

            However… as the percentage of immigrants in America grows, the growth of soccer will continue, as many of these immigrants are existing fans of pro soccer (including the national teams).

      • jj says:

        Football on TV is great and i think that has really helped it grow.

        Hockey on tv looses a lot and that hurts it. But that tracer or glower or whatever was totally asinine. It is not that hard to follow a puck on tv if you have any idea what the flow of a game is. Does it get lost on ocasssion, yes. But who really cares? You can typically find it in about 1 second. Maybe they could take some ads off the ice. The NHL and hopefully B10 hockey need to understand that the vast majority of existing fans don’t care about being popular. They appreciate tradition, the game, and the quirks. They need to put the market research back on the shelf and let hockey be hockey.

        I honestly cannot see the average sports fan giving a crap about LAX on tv or otherwise.

        • jj says:

          LAX combines the two sports 90% of Americans don’t like – hockey and soccer.

          • largeR says:

            @JJ ‘LAX combines the two sports 90% of Americans don’t like-hockey and soccer.’

            Great observation. As far as football losing, or rather, declining, from its pre-eminent position in American sports, I believe its saving attribute is that it is played by all shapes and sizes and abilities of individuals. It is also helped by the sheer number of participants. This is true especially at the high school level where a deep love of a sport is developed. And, those various individuals go on in life relating to Friday nights, and Saturdays and Sundays. IMO, the only thing that will bring football down is the concussion issue.

          • ccrider55 says:

            ESPN sees value enough in soccer to be showing Czech Republic v Italy in a World Cup qualifier on the main channel.

          • BruceMcF says:

            “LAX combines the two sports 90% of Americans don’t like – hockey and soccer.” ~ yes, combining the fourth and fifth most popular team sports, into a sport that’s more accessible than either.

            My experience is its easier for a novice to tell where the ball is than tracking the puck in ice hockey, from following my Alma Mater the Miami Red{something}s in their effort to make the Frozen Four and the Buckeyes in their two games in the NCAA Lacrosse tournament.

            And the scoring comes at a regular enough pace so that its a lot easier to follow who has the run of play than in soccer. It took several years of following the Newcastle Breakers in the old Australian NSL before I could really follow the run of play in soccer.

    • gfunk says:

      Nice take. Bottom line, my resolve remains firm: the sport grows better with JHU to the BIG, not the ACC. Plus it helps the ACC in the long run, there is simply more depth on the men’s side. Adding JHU only makes the annual bids a constant controversy. The sport’s growth is more important than a particular conference’s dominance (men’s side). I’ve never been a big fan of BIG dominance in wrestling, plus OkSt. Unfortunately, the sport’s popularity is on the decline. I could also insert a Water Polo argument as well : ).

      On the other hand, I do want to caution lacrosse’s so-called growth. There’s a bit of hype with all of this. I argued earlier that Duke’s M. Lacrosse NC should not outweigh Michigan’s M. Swimming NC – Capital One Cup, at most they should be the same. I’m not exactly a fan of the Director’s Cup assigning equivalent points for all sports either. But, there are simply far more swimming programs on the landscape than lacrosse, swimming has greater regional diversity as well.

      • ccrider55 says:

        “I’ve never been a big fan of BIG dominance in wrestling, plus OkSt. Unfortunately, the sport’s popularity is on the decline.”

        No, the popularity is higher than ever in HS and younger. More schools, men, and a very quickly growing number of women. A number of states now have enough participants they sponsor a separate women’s state championships.

        Wrestling isn’t dieing in college. It is being murdered at D1, but growing at the lower levels.

        • gfunk says:

          CC,

          Sure, but if the college or olympics route ceases, then all that hs growth hits a wall. MMA or other alternative professional MMA leagues may become the norm, post high school.

          I’m disappointed about what’s happening to NCAA wrestling. I’d like to see the sport grow. It doesn’t seem to have the damaging, long term health risks of say football, boxing & even ice hockey. It’s the biggest sport at my former high school – Apple Valley, MN (consistently one of the nation’s best high school wrestling programs). The UofMn is a respectable wrestling program & Augsburg College in Mpls, is one of D3′s blue bloods.

        • ccrider55 says:

          I believe Putin has had members of the IOC over for dinner and made a “Godfather” like proposition. Wrestling will remain (and actually has made some dramatic changes in the last month, returning more to the sport before the IOC and TV execs got involved in trying to make it more soccer mom, broadcast window friendly) is my considered opinion.

          MMA is not an acceptable change from wrestling. As with boxing, the goal is to break, submit, or render the opponent unconscious. Wrestling rules sanction such intent and bar holds likely to produce those results. Barbaric exhibitions are not really a good fit for an academic institutions athletic offering.

          UofMn is significantly above “respectable”.

          • SH says:

            I like your thinking. That sounds about right.

          • gfunk says:

            I know we’re “significantly above respectable” but in general, Minnesnowtans don’t pat themselves too much on the back. On the other hand, we can be extremely critical, esp with our hockey team. This year being a fine example. We were better than Yale on paper, and throughout much of that heartbreaking, boneheaded loss. They prevailed and went on to win the NC. Oh well, nice to see an Ivy League team win it all.

            I do notice a lot of former wrestlers in MMA, more so than say boxers. But maybe not as much as those with a jiu jitsu background. Sure I see the differences between wrestling & MMA, but there’s a lot of crossover. It’s often a submission that ends an MMA match, though the “unconscious” knockouts have increased : ).

            Of all the sports I watch, wrestling so often brings the drama. You are right, there is a definite form of grace in order to win the match & it doesn’t include supercharged, vicarious howling screams by male types like an MMA circus. Nothing like a Mn vs OkSt, Iowa, PSU match. I’ve seen plenty.

      • SH says:

        GFunk – I concur with your assesment. Lacrosse as a sport is better off with JH in B10. Gives that league instant credibility and they have the schools to grow it. Here is Texas it is really taking off. Obviously it is not football, but one wonders when it will become mainstream – at least like soccer is now.

        One thing about lacrosse is that it is uniquely American – like baseball once was and football still is. As oppossed to soccer. You could look at this as a positive or negative. But I think it probably helps.

        • Elmo says:

          I have read this whole thread with some interest. In full disclosure, I live in a rural area near Madison, Wisconsin. My take is that, at least in the upper Midwest, that football is somewhat in decline among youth. It is still very popular, and likely will always be, but I think the best middle-class athletes aren’t playing football anymore. I think Soccer has begun to make big inroads against football for youth, and may overtake it at some point in the next generation. La Crosse does not have a significant youth following, but a big ten la crosse conference could help change that. I am old enough to remember soccer being the same way. The point is that I think football will be impacted by these changes, and won’t be as dominant among younger generations.

    • Psuhockey says:

      Nice article. I complete disagree with anyone who compares footballs future to that of boxing. Boxing didn’t die because it was dangerous. It was much more dangerous back in the day than now. Boxing died in this country (still a very popular nitch sport but it was once the biggest sport in the world) because it went PPV and cutoff it’s own feeder system. Boxing, like football and basketball now, was a way of upward mobility in this country for blue collar workers and those below the poverty level. When the sport went to PPV, it destroyed its exposure to the lower income people that made up its ranks; those willing to sacrifice their health for upward mobility. Rich suburbanites, the very same that are now keeping their kids out of football and worrying about long term health affects, hardly ever participated in the sport to begin with even in its hay day. It was made up of the poor trying to climb the latter thru athletics. Those same kids now turn to basketball and football because that is who they see of TV, Unless in the future, Football takes themselves off the TV’s of lower income families, the will not be hurting for participation. As long as fame, money, and even something like a free education are there for the taking, kids will still participate. I would wager that the majority of NFL players came from small beginnings except maybe the quarterback position. With the likes of Katherine Webb and Gisele waiting in the wings for successful quarterbacks, you will have plenty of rich kids badgering their parents to play that position. Football will be fine for a long time.

      • acaffrey says:

        I’ll tell you what, though. The more likely harm to football will be continued modification of the rules to placate the need to pretend it is safer. We already have so many rules to protect the QBs. Then the hits by DBs. Now RBs are not allowed to do this or that. At what point does making football safer keeper it from being football? We are not there yet, but there is a slippery slope that can be conceived. And once it stops being the football we enjoyed watching, will we still care as much about it and still watch it?

        I don’t watch hockey FOR the fighting, but it is far less interesting to me without fighting at least being possible. I’ll never forget 190-lb Matthew Barnaby taking on 240-lb Eric Lindros. That is a level of courage I sure as heck don’t have. Wasn’t much of a fight, but pretty cool nevertheless.

        I suspect if NASCAR had padded walls and padded cars, they would lose some of their following too. It’s not THAT there are crashes. Its that there CAN BE crashes. That is a level of courage that is alone worth watching.

        At least for the mainstream watcher.

        • Brian says:

          acaffrey,

          “I don’t watch hockey FOR the fighting, but it is far less interesting to me without fighting at least being possible. I’ll never forget 190-lb Matthew Barnaby taking on 240-lb Eric Lindros. That is a level of courage I sure as heck don’t have. Wasn’t much of a fight, but pretty cool nevertheless.”

          Fighting isn’t allowed in college hockey or the Olympics or in youth hockey. It’s only in the pros, and it’s stupid just like allowing bean balls and bench-clearing brawls in baseball. Risking injury to your stars by allowing people to break the rules is bad policy.

          “I suspect if NASCAR had padded walls and padded cars,”

          They do. The doors of the cars are filled with foam, the drivers use wraparound seats with a neck restraint and the walls have SAFER barriers which are large foam blocks behind a wall that gives a little. Padding doesn’t stop crashes from happening, it just reduces injuries and deaths.

          • acaffrey says:

            I hate NASCAR, so I do not care. And I have not been able to care about hockey since the first lockout in the 2000s. You are entitled to your opinions on the stupidity of fighting, bean balls, and bench-clearing brawls. I just do not understand how anyone is “allowing people to break the rules,” as there are imposed penalties in hockey and suspensions in baseball.

          • Brian says:

            Refs could stop fighting before it happens by imposing serious punishments for those who do it. Instead, they treat it is a minor offense and people keep fighting. Then a big name player gets hurt (Zach Greinke – broken collar bone) and the sport suffers. The same in hockey – players don’t fight at the lower levels because the punishment is more severe. Bean balls have the potential to kill the batter, but they’re part of the game as a way to resolve any pent of frustration a team might have. Why aren’t the player unions stepping up to protect their members? It’s stupid and reckless and eventually someone will sue when they suffer a serious injury.

            Hockey refs literally let a fight happen and then break it up once they’re done rather than try to stop it right away. Then they give a trivial penalty to the fighters to make sure fighting stays a part of the game. Make fighting a mandatory 10 minute game misconduct and 40 game suspension (escalating for each violation by 20 more games) and nobody would fight in the NHL. Instead, the NHL makes sure to keep the punishment light enough to keep some fighting.

          • jj says:

            Fighting is part of the game. I also agree that it actually prevents injuries because it reduces the amount of stick attacks. No one will spear you if they know they will get their ass beat for it. If you really wanted to reduce hockey violence, you would move to 4 on 4. The NHL size ice is crowded.

          • jj says:

            One last thing, goes along with crowded ice. You are far more likely to be injured by a legal check you don’t see than a consensual fight.

          • Brian says:

            There are other ways to prevent spearing than to sanction committing a felony during the game. Make the penalties for intentional violent acts (spearing, slashing, boarding, etc) much more severe and people would largely stop committing them. Other levels of hockey do just fine without allowing fighting.

          • jj says:

            I didn’t realize mutual combat was a felony.

            Fighting in hockey is very ritualized. It’s not just someone coming up and going nuts on some random opponent. The first rule of fighting is that the players have to agree to it. You may not believe this, but it’s true.

            Refs will usually jump in once someone is down or if they are clearly outmatched. And the third man in rule prevents any real mayhem. I can’t remember the last time I saw anything really crazy.

            Players have been sued and prosecuted for actions on the ice. As far as I know, one person has died as a result of being in a fight. I can think of far more instances of people getting seriously hurt and damn near killed by stick attacks.

            Fighting is way down anyway. Popularity isn’t improving.

          • Brian says:

            I agree fighting is way down (because they stiffened the penalties) and I never claimed it would make hockey more popular. Stick attacks should get stiffer penalties, but I have a hard time feeling sorry for players that refuse to wear full face masks and then get facial injuries.

      • SH says:

        PSU, I agree with you the PPV harmed boxing. Promoters did not culture the sport at a time it needed culturing. It benefitted a select few, but ultimately harmed the sport in general. Football seems to have better caregivers, as well as a much larger fanbase. Ultimately, I think its deathknell will come when high schools eliminate it in the name of costs and safety. I hope I’m wrong, but nothing goes on forever.

        You say football will be fine for a long time. I’d probably agree, just disagree with you on what constitutes a “long time.”

      • Richard says:

        “I would wager that the majority of NFL players came from small beginnings except maybe the quarterback position.”

        I would say you’re wrong about at least some positions. O-Linemen are probably more likely to have been middle-class suburbanites than poor anything.

    • metatron says:

      >to the same conference that has Notre Dame football.

      I chuckled.

  45. gfunk says:

    Let’s plug some positive Rutgers’ news. Sorry if it was already done, the thread is becoming an ACC wish list again.

    “The Rutgers football program was the lone state university on the list to be ranked in the top 10 percent nationally in APR for the sixth straight year. The Scarlet Knights continue to be one of the leaders nationally in both production on the field and in the classroom. Last year, Rutgers football was ranked ninth nationally in Academic Progress Rate, after placing number two in 2011 and number one in 2010.”

    http://www.scarletknights.com/football/news/release.asp?prID=13307#.Ua9xbpV8zzJ

  46. SH says:

    I pointed this out earlier in thead, if you are of the belief that football is dying, a reasonable belief but not a certainty, it makes sense (for a conference) to diversify its sport holdings and strenghten existing ones. While also maximizing your football revenue while you can. The B10 has done this with its recent additions. Its why a UNC/UVA/Duke expansion make a lot of sense (from that perspective).

    And if superconferences can break the NCAA – there is a lot of money for them in basketball.

    • Psuhockey says:

      Yikes. I imagine it will be on regular TV in Mississippi, but if not, good luck getting secondary BCS schools to want to play Texas non conference if its only on the LHN.

      • Brian says:

        Supposedly ESPN is working on a solution for MS. Maybe it’s broadcast, maybe it’s PPV, maybe it’s a reduced price for 1 month of LHN for the local cable distributors.

        • ccrider55 says:

          “Supposedly ESPN is working on a solution for MS. Maybe it’s broadcast, maybe it’s PPV, maybe it’s a reduced price for 1 month of LHN for the local cable distributors.”

          Seems like an odd way to drive carriage.

        • frug says:

          If memory serves me right, when they played Kansas two years ago ESPN work a deal with one of the local broadcast networks to carry the game in Kansas. I expect something similar in this case.

      • frug says:

        Worth noting that this contract was signed in 2008, way before the LHN. Future opponents might insist on language barring their games from being broadcast on the LHN or at least a guarantee that if the game is on the LHN it will be made available locally.

        • Eric says:

          They probably will, but my guess is that will be ESPN’s approach anyway. This isn’t that much different than non-conference games ending up on the Big Ten Network.

          • ccrider55 says:

            No difference…except the exponential difference in viewers.

            Shouldn’t an attractive OOC game be selected for broadcast through the primary media agreement? Is the rest of the conference being compensated for loss of a second UT home game? Are they going to eventually allow the LHN to become the B12 network?

          • frug says:

            ESPN buys the rights to the second game from the conference.

            That was part of the compromise the conference reached in exchange for ESPN pledging not to broadcast Texas high school content on the LHN.

          • ccrider55 says:

            HS broadcasts on school dedicated channels were/are recruiting violations. No compromise needed-they were not allowable, with or without conference permission.

            I know they are being compensated. Is it equal to what UT is receiving (and I mean for the network, not just the game)? If not they truely are a bunch of lackeys and servants cow towing to their masters wishes.

          • frug says:

            HS broadcasts on school dedicated channels were/are recruiting violations. No compromise needed-they were not allowable, with or without conference permission

            I don’t know about now, but at the time the compromise was reached the NCAA had simply put what amounted to a hold on HS broadcasts pending further study. No one knew what the NCAA’s ultimate ruling would be or when it would come.

            As part of the compromise ESPN and Texas agreed to just drop the issue entirely even if the NCAA ultimately gave them the thumbs up.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Schools had been reprimanded for having HS recruits during recruiting trips being being shown briefly on the stadium/coliseum jumbotron. Everyone agreed except ESPN, and UT (to their credit, with far less conviction). It was an outrageous distraction designed to make getting more than one UT game appear to have been a compromise rather than simply UT taking what they want.

          • bullet says:

            You can never predict how the NCAA will rule on anything. There is a fine line between the Sunshine Network showing Gator games and Florida HS football and ESPN’s LHN showing UT games (and UTSA and Texas St.) and showing Texas HS football games.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Like the fine line between steak and a happy meal?

          • bullet says:

            There is the potential for abuse, but no one got concerned until the ESPN guy started talking about how exciting it would be to see Texas recruits like Jonathan Gray.

            As a general rule (without the abuse), I don’t see any benefit for the school for simply having HS games on a branded network.

          • bullet says:

            I think ESPN was counting on the HS games to help sell the network broadly in Texas and their own guy screwed that possibility up. The organization that runs HS sports in Texas is actually a component of the University of Texas.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Bullet:

            “As a general rule (without the abuse), I don’t see any benefit for the school for simply having HS games on a branded network.”

            Every other school sees simply having HS games on a branded network as an intolerable abuse.

            Does the B1G really want/want to invite this kind of arrogance? I think the PAC won by losing on the P16 attempt.

          • frug says:

            Schools had been reprimanded for having HS recruits during recruiting trips being being shown briefly on the stadium/coliseum jumbotron

            Except those are team owned and operated jumbotrons. Texas doesn’t own or control the content on the LHN. From structural perspective it would have been no different than a local NBC affiliate show a high school game or Sunshine Sports.

            It was an outrageous distraction designed to make getting more than one UT game appear to have been a compromise rather than simply UT taking what they want.

            Trust me, ESPN was counting on high school content to help fill the schedule out. They didn’t expect the sort of push back they got.

            Does the B1G really want/want to invite this kind of arrogance?

            UT is no less arrogant than ND and the Big 10 has been flirting with them for 50 years. For that matter, Penn St. and Nebraska weren’t exactly the best team players on the planet when they joined, and the Big 10 has been fine (JoePa’s Grand Eastern Conference fell apart because Penn St. wouldn’t agree to any revenue sharing at all in FB and Nebraska backed the Big XII’s unequal revenue distribution)

          • ccrider55 says:

            Frug:

            “From structural perspective it would have been no different than a local NBC affiliate show a high school game or Sunshine Sports.”

            Which is the same as a legal recruiting service creating a branch that specifically works for one school’s benefit. It crossing the line and becomes an agent of that school.

          • frug says:

            The NCAA is a bureaucracy, and like most others it operates with a rulebook filled with loopholes. It was a loophole that let the Buckeye 5 play in the Sugar Bowl, it was a loophole that let Cam Newton keep his eligibility and it was a loophole that let the SEC set up the first CCG.

            Like it or not, ESPN might have found one with regards to HS content. The rest of the Big XII was sufficiently afraid enough that they cut a deal to stop ESPN from pursuing it.

          • bullet says:

            How does showing Midland Lee vs. Odessa Permian when no one on either team is being recruited to Texas make ESPN an agent of Texas?

          • ccrider55 says:

            I agree that is what happened, but don’t think it was necessary to stop HS broadcasts. It did provide cover for them to grant UT some of the other things UT wanted.

            To be fair, I think ESPN’s plan may have surprised UT. They have a better focus on NCAA rules than a quarterly profit driven commercial entity. They wound up having to back their partner to an extent, having to play the surprise card that came up. One of the downsides to selling your brand to an external business.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Bullet:

            July 30, 2011
            “Pearland Dawson officials indicated last week that the LHN has contacted the school inquiring about the possibility of airing one of their games this fall. The school is home to highly-rated offensive lineman Kennedy Estelle who happens to also be a Texas verbal commitment.”

          • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

            “How does showing Midland Lee vs. Odessa Permian when no one on either team is being recruited to Texas make ESPN an agent of Texas?”
            —How would showing cigarette commercials when children are prohibited from buying cigarettes ever be construed as marketing to children?

            There’s no need to be overtly obtuse.

          • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

            …oops somehow I omitted “…on the cartoon network….”.

  47. Transic says:

    But despite several ACC officials trumpeting a potential channel shortly after the grant of rights surfaced, there are still serious hurdles to clear for a channel to happen.

    Step one: What to do with Raycom.

    ESPN must buy back rights that it sold to Raycom Sports, which in turn sublicensed rights to Fox. An ACC channel would need much of that content to pour into the channel.

    Consider Raycom’s position. The SEC Network just recouped third-tier content into an ESPN-run SEC Channel, so Raycom’s 31 ACC football games (some of which are sublicensed to Fox) can corner the market on Southeast syndication programming on Saturday afternoons in the fall. Raycom also has 60 live men’s basketball games, according to Sports Business Journal, and Fox also has some of those games, too.

    Local stations in the South still need content, and Raycom’s ACC lineup is basically the only game left in that regard.

    It seems unlikely Raycom would sell back to ESPN on the cheap, and the ACC knows this. That’s why the ACC plans to make the deal “enticing” for Raycom and will probably have to come out of pocket to secure a successful sell, according to a source with direct knowledge of the ACC’s plan. There’s also a chance Raycom/Fox could keep some of the content. This will be part of the negotiation.

    http://www.cbssports.com/collegefootball/blog/jeremy-fowler/22356703/acc-network-still-in-early-stageswhats-next

    Do you think Notre Dame would be asked to dig into its own pockets to help pay for the Raycom buyout?

    • ccrider55 says:

      Why doesn’t Disney just buy Raycom? I’m sure they could spin off the parts they don’t want and keep those they do. Or am I overestimating the mouse’s power?

      • metatron says:

        You’re overestimating the mouse’s interest. The ACC isn’t a major player in college football, and ESPN is only one (albeit the biggest) jewel in their empire.

        Besides, with this grant of rights, ESPN got what they wanted all along – conference stability.

        • vp19 says:

          But if the ACC network can’t get off the ground because of Raycom conflicts and such, the very concept of the GOR — the ticket to conference stability — is undermined. Eventually, a Clemson or Florida State, seeing their beloved football diminished to an afterthought against its in-state SEC rival, will work to have the contract negated. The N.C. schools can live with diminished football; it’s not in their lifeblood. Their southern ACC brethren don’t see things that way.

  48. Brian says:

    Frank,

    I see you’re going to do an expansion post for OTE next week. I posted some questions over there since I don’t tweet, but I’ll repost them here for your consideration. Is there a particular area of expansion you plan to focus on, or just go wherever the questions take you?

    1. In the next 5 years, will JHU join the B10 fully or will they choose to go back to independence?

    2. Will JHU’s women’s team join the B10 in the next 5 years?

    3. Should/will the CIC add JHU now or wait to see if JHU joins the B10 fully?

    4. Should the CIC consider expansion separate from the B10? If JHU joins, that will make 1 current UAA member (Chicago) and 1 former member (JHU) in the CIC. The rest of the UAA are all AAU schools, mostly in large markets, all doing a lot of research and playing D-III sports so they wouldn’t compete with the B10.

    5. Are major schools mostly stuck where they are until the various GORs reach their last couple of years?

    6. How much of a money gap is likely needed to drive a school to leave their current conference for the B10 or SEC? Are we likely to see that sort of a gap form in the next 10-15 years?

    7. Will the NCAA form a new division, will the power schools break away or will nothing change structurally?

    8. If the power schools are in their own group (new division or outside of the NCAA), would the conferences as we know them be maintained or would pure geography be forced on them to maximize the money?

    9. If and when a power conference hits 16+ members, will they stick with divisions or use pods?

    10. Will the CCG rule get changed to allow the top 2 teams to play regardless of how a league is structured (divisions or no divisions)?

    11. Say the B10 looks into expansion again in 10-15 years. Will the top targets be the same or will the B10 have a change of heart about priorities (AAU requirement, contiguous states, etc)?

    12. Which I-A schools, if any, will join the AAU in the next 20 years and which will drop out?

    • metatron says:

      Obviously I’m not Frank, but I feel like taking a bite.

      1. They’ll stay.

      2. Unknown.

      3. They’re working over the details as we speak. I imagine they’re going over what exactly that entails as the CIC isn’t one large program, but rather several that include course sharing, faculty exchange, etc.

      4. No. The Big Ten and the CIC are one family and seen as such by the administrations.

      5. Most likely, barring any unforeseen and unlikely actions.

      6. Enough to buy back their rights from their conference. Even then, you’d need to find a school that had that sort of cash upfront and/or worth that sort of payment.

      7. New division. The Big 5 and maybe a few of the mid-majors will be promoted. There’s too much at stake for the NCAA to fall apart – you’ll get the government involved and nobody wants that.

      8. They’re already grouped by geography. Division-I FBS exists because the major schools enjoy the status quo. You’re not going to start seeing Alabama fly up to Madison for a game in November, or a legitimately sanctioned post-season.

      9. Depends on the number of games.

      10. Probably not. If you can’t play everyone in a round-robin format, a divisional round-robin is best.

      11. They’ll be the same. College football hates the nouveau riche.

      12. Probably none/The Midwestern agricultural schools. A school will be very vulnerable if they separate their campuses as well.

      • Brian says:

        metatron,

        “1. They’ll stay.”

        I hope so, but I’m really not sure. It helps that the B10 will only have 6 teams so JHU can preserve a bunch of old rivalries, though. That means they can focus on the positives of being in a conference (easier scheduling in warm weather, shared focus on academic issues for athletes, the planning resources a major conference can bring to bear, etc). Combine that with the advantages of the CIC and I’m cautiously optimistic.

        “2. Unknown.”

        I think they will if the men decide to stay.

        “3. They’re working over the details as we speak. I imagine they’re going over what exactly that entails as the CIC isn’t one large program, but rather several that include course sharing, faculty exchange, etc.”

        I think they go for partial membership (they can do group purchasing, join in some research projects, etc) now but save the full integration (high speed fiber optic network, etc) until and unless JHU fully commits.

        “4. No. The Big Ten and the CIC are one family and seen as such by the administrations.”

        But they aren’t the same. UC is only in the CIC. JHU is only in the B10 for now. If the CIC wants to corner the market on research funding, there are many schools they could add that would work. The UAA schools are one example because they don’t conflict with the B10. But there are others that aren’t I-A, like the Ivies or the Canadian members of the AAU. There’s no inherent reason why the CIC and B10 should be the same. CIC membership doesn’t improve athletics and playing in the B10 doesn’t drive research.

        “6. Enough to buy back their rights from their conference. Even then, you’d need to find a school that had that sort of cash upfront and/or worth that sort of payment.”

        I was thinking more about the annual gap that would be sufficient to drive a school to seek to leave. $10M? $15M? $20M? More?

        “7. New division. The Big 5 and maybe a few of the mid-majors will be promoted. There’s too much at stake for the NCAA to fall apart – you’ll get the government involved and nobody wants that.”

        I agree a new division seems like the most likely solution. I’m curious about it’s size, though.

        Currently (full members only):
        D-I = 340
        I-A = 124
        I-AA = 118

        ACC = B10 = SEC = 14
        P12 = 12
        B12 = 10
        Indie = 2 that matter (ND, BYU)

        That’s 66.

        How many others do you let in? Boise. The academies if they want in. The BE remnants? The rest of the MWC?

        I think you have to be independent or a member of a conference that is wholly D-I+ to move up. I don’t the AAC or MWC should be up there, but I think they’ll push for rules that let them squeak in.

        The Big 5 average over 45k in attendance as conferences and nobody else does (ACC = 49,910 last year vs BE = 39,185 vs MWC = 25,888), so maybe you require 40k average for the conference or the team in the case of an independent. That leaves room for conferences to expand but will keep small schools from jumping up to steal money.

        “8. They’re already grouped by geography. Division-I FBS exists because the major schools enjoy the status quo. You’re not going to start seeing Alabama fly up to Madison for a game in November, or a legitimately sanctioned post-season.”

        They are? WV is in the middle of the country? UMD and RU are? ISU and NE aren’t swapped? Multiple conferences don’t overlap unnecessarily? If you’re going purely for maximum money, wouldn’t minimizing travel and maximizing regional interest help? You don’t want to kill rivalries, but going geographical would restore some (OU/NE, WV/Pitt, PSU/Pitt, etc). The problem would be getting presidents to release some control over which schools they associate with, so I don’t think it’ll happen. But I have seen plenty of fans talk about doing it.

        “9. Depends on the number of games.”

        I actually don’t think it does. I think it comes down to how many rivalries a conference wants to keep. The SEC seems fine almost never playing the other division, and apparently so is the ACC. Would adding 2 teams really change that outlook? On the other hand, the B10 seemed more concerned about frequency of play with the talk about once in 4 years being a minimum. I;d guess the B10 is more likely to try pods than the ACC or SEC.

        “10. Probably not. If you can’t play everyone in a round-robin format, a divisional round-robin is best.”

        To me, this will happen soon after a new division is formed. Only the B12 would possibly benefit from the status quo, and only them because it hurts everyone else.

        14 teams:
        No divisions
        8 games, 0 locked = 0.62 x 13 teams
        8 games, 1 locked = 1 x 1 team, 0.58 x 12 teams
        8 games, 2 locked = 1 x 2 team, 0.55 x 11 teams
        8 games, 3 locked = 1 x 3 team, 0.50 x 10 teams

        9 games, 0 locked = 0.69 x 13 teams
        9 games, 1 locked = 1 x 1 team, 0.67 x 12 teams
        9 games, 2 locked = 1 x 2 team, 0.64 x 11 teams
        9 games, 3 locked = 1 x 3 team, 0.60 x 10 teams

        Divisions
        8 games, 0 locked = 1 x 6 teams, 0.29 x 7 teams
        8 games, 1 locked = 1 x 7 teams, 0.17 x 6 teams

        9 games, 0 locked = 1 x 6 teams, 0.43 x 7 teams
        9 games, 1 locked = 1 x 7 teams, 0.33 x 6 teams

        You can play more teams frequently when you drop divisions. It also makes it easier to get the top two teams into the CCG, making for better ratings.

        12 teams:
        No divisions
        8 games, 0 locked = 0.73 x 11 teams
        8 games, 1 locked = 1 x 1 team, 0.70 x 10 teams
        8 games, 2 locked = 1 x 2 team, 0.67 x 9 teams
        8 games, 3 locked = 1 x 3 team, 0.63 x 8 teams

        9 games, 0 locked = 0.82 x 11 teams
        9 games, 1 locked = 1 x 1 team, 0.80 x 10 teams
        9 games, 2 locked = 1 x 2 team, 0.78 x 9 teams
        9 games, 3 locked = 1 x 3 team, 0.75 x 8 teams

        Divisions
        8 games, 0 locked = 1 x 5 teams, 0.50 x 6 teams
        8 games, 1 locked = 1 x 6 teams, 0.40 x 5 teams

        9 games, 0 locked = 1 x 5 teams, 0.67 x 6 teams
        9 games, 1 locked = 1 x 6 teams, 0.60 x 5 teams

        No divisions is better for everyone as long as the CCG rule is changed. Maybe the B12 gets offered the chance to play the top independent or B12 #2 in a CCG.

        “11. They’ll be the same. College football hates the nouveau riche.”

        Really? Would the B10 reject UConn, VT, FSU or Miami if they were AAU members? Could something happen to change the B10′s plan to look east and southeast?

        “12. Probably none/The Midwestern agricultural schools. A school will be very vulnerable if they separate their campuses as well.”

        Recent I-A AAU members: GT in 2010, TAMU in 2001, RU and Buffalo in 1989

        From NE’s PDF file they gave the AAU, Utah looks likely to join fairly soon. They were already top 50 and joining the P12 should only help them. After them come WF at 57 and Miami at 59. They both had some work to do, but 20 years is a long time. They’re already around the 25th percentile of members. The bottom few members were #81, 83, 87, 94, 105 and 109 (NE), but NE and SU (likely 105) are now out. I think at least 1 more school is likely to get the boot (#94) in the next 20 years, but I could see up to 4 going. We don’t know for sure which schools those are at the bottom, but we have some guesses.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      My turn:

      1. The JHU men’s lacrosse team will join permanently. The structural changes in the sport that led them to join a league, aren’t going to change back again — at least not in 5 years.

      2. I think the women’s team will eventually join, as well.

      3. I suspect that JHU’s decision to join the CIC will be linked to the decision to join the Big Ten permanently. Joining the CIC is not a small undertaking, and I don’t think they’d do it if they were in doubt about remaining in the league.

      4. Perhaps someone can explain the current reasoning of limiting CIC membership to Big Ten (or in Chicago’s case, ex-Big Ten) members. To some extent, it may just be an accident of history. But there’s no particular reason why your research partners need to be the same schools as your sports opponents. From a research viewpoint, Carnegie-Mellon might be a better research partner for the rest of the Big Ten than Nebraska…but Nebraska’s in, and CMU is not.

      5. I don’t see how any school could leave a Big Five league before the current GORs are near expiration. I also don’t envision any non-Big Five school being attractive enough to a Big Five league in the near term. Any major realignment, for the time being, is going to be taking place in the lower leagues.

      6. I think there’ll be at least a $10 million money gap between B1G/SEC and the ACC, and that gap will be enough to make SOME schools eager to make the jump. Of course, the schools eager to jump need to be the ones the B1G/SEC want. A school like Texas or UNC might tolerate a larger money gap, in exchange for being in a league that they control. A school like Kansas or Florida State would chase the money, and wouldn’t look back.

      7. I think the NCAA will form a new division for upper-tier football, sort of a I-A+. Breaking away completely would require a whole new regulatory infrastructure, which I don’t think anyone has the appetite for.

      I think you have to be independent or a member of a conference that is wholly D-I+ to move up. I don’t the AAC or MWC should be up there, but I think they’ll push for rules that let them squeak in.

      I believe you may be misreading the larger schools’ complaints. Their beef is that they want rule changes like “full cost of attendance scholarships,” and small schools like Indiana State are standing in their way. I think that if the AAC and MWC are willing to play with Big Boy rules, the Big Boys will let them in. I doubt that they care as much about the size of their stadiums.

      I certainly believe they’d allow the service academies in, simply because it’s not worth inviting the wrath of Congress over the fate of those three schools. The service academies have their own scholarship rules anyway.

      8. If the power schools are in their own group (new division or outside of the NCAA), would the conferences as we know them be maintained or would pure geography be forced on them to maximize the money?

      The power schools’ complaint is that the NCAA is too bureaucratic. I can’t imagine them consenting to allow a central bureaucracy to decide which league a school is allowed to play in. Leagues are marriages of convenience, and I think each school wants the freedom to make its own deal.

      Anyhow, three of the Big Five leagues are already geographically contiguous. Aside from WV, the Big XII is very nearly contiguous, and no one is going to make a new set of rules just for WV. The Big Ten is certainly not going to allow a system that forces them to take Pitt, even if Pitt is closer to their geography than it is to the rest of the ACC. Syracuse and BC are always going to seem like remote outposts, no matter what league they’re in. It’s just their bad fortune that there are so few major football schools in the Northeast.

      9. If and when a power conference hits 16+ members, will they stick with divisions or use pods.

      10. Will the CCG rule get changed to allow the top 2 teams to play regardless of how a league is structured (divisions or no divisions)?

      Brian’s answer is the one I’ve favored for a long time: eliminate divisions, and just have the best two schools play at the end of the season. As Brian notes, it’s a lot easier to put together a regular-season schedule if you aren’t locked into static divisions or pods. It also reduces the possibility of an anti-climactic championship game, in years where one division is far stronger than the other.

      Past FTT threads have debated endlessly the pod structure for a 16, 18, or 20-team Big Ten. I never saw an alignment that was better than just a flat structure with no pods or divisions. It always seemed that, no matter how you did it, either the pods were competitively unbalanced, or you had teams thrown into pods arbitrarily with unrelated teams, just to make the numbers work.

      Now, if the current rule remains in place, then I think the Big Ten would be forced to hold its nose and implement pods, because the league values a scheduling format where everyone plays everyone reasonably often (i.e., within four years). Perhaps the SEC would be willing to tolerate two 8-team divisions.

      11. I expect the Big Ten to remain fairly conservative about expansion. Leagues tend to relax their standards when they’re feeling weak (e.g., the ACC’s partial membership offer to Notre Dame). Right now, the Big Ten doesn’t feel weak. If that remains true, then geographic contiguity and AAU membership will be fairly firm requirements, with exceptions in truly compelling cases. (Even now, I view Nebraska as a non-AAU add: they were AAU at the time, but the whole league knew that that might not be the case for very much longer.)

      12. I have to admit, I don’t fully understand the reasoning for kicking schools out of the AAU. What was the “problem”, for which kicking out Nebraska was the “solution”? Frankly, I thought Nebraska had a pretty compelling case for staying in.

      New schools will continue to join the AAU: there are always at least a couple of new AAU schools per decade. Some of the potential additions will be of no interest to the Big Ten, either due to geography (Utah) or athletic competitiveness (Wake Forest). But I think Miami would instantly jump to the top of the Big Ten candidates list, were they to get into the AAU.

      • ccrider55 says:

        #4: The B1G sees itself and acts as a conference of schools, not simply athletic departments. The athletic departments are extensions of the schools as is the CIC. The CIC is a B1G creation, and all members have, or had their athletic teams together. Chicago de-emphasized athletics and dropped down division. They did not leave the conference for another, or independence, at the same level. They simply no longer offered D1 (or the equivalent at the time) opportunities. Would a school get kicked for dropping a academic department and channeling the resources into another or new one?

      • bullet says:

        I would like to see the academies drop to FCS. They would have a better chance for success, lower (even if marginal) chance of injury and less pressure to recruit athletes in specific sports to now co-ed academies whose purpose is to train military officers and protect the country.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          I would like to see the academies drop to FCS. They would have a better chance for success, lower (even if marginal) chance of injury and less pressure to recruit athletes in specific sports to now co-ed academies whose purpose is to train military officers and protect the country.

          If they weren’t government run, they would unquestionably have done so many years ago. I have no idea if the benefits are what you’re saying they’d be. For the government, the cost of runing those programs is minuscule in the larger scheme of things, so the pride of saying they’re a top-tier, bowl-eligible program is not worth giving up. They probably wouldn’t drop out of FBS unless Congress forces them, and I don’t recall seeing any such proposal.

          What I can say, is that if they don’t voluntarily step down to FCS, there’d probably be a lot of complaints about any rule-change forcing them down into a new second tier. If you’re writing the rules, it’s just not worth fighting that fight. Of course, there are a lot of collateral implications, as Big Five schools (plus Notre Dame) like to schedule the service academies and don’t want to give those games up.

      • metatron says:

        Nebraska has separated their medical school from the flagship and the AAU disapproves of agricultural science apparently.

    • Brian says:

      Frank,

      Over at OTE, people are posting questions for you in the comments of a post.

      http://www.offtackleempire.com/2013/6/5/4399380/youve-got-b1g-expansion-questions-frank-the-tank-has-answers

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        It doesn’t look like very many people are joining in. Brian posted the same set of questions he posted here. One other person posted a smaller list of questions that are already covered by Brian’s. Another asked if there was any chance of Oklahoma to the B1G, to which Brian himself gave a pretty good answer.

        • Brian says:

          Well, they asked for them on Twitter but said you could post them in the comments instead. I don’t use Twitter, but other people do.

    • Arch Stanton says:

      A victim of his own success, plus the fact that he is sort of a d!ckhead who alienates a lot of other people in college baseball.
      Gonna be a tough hire for the school and a tough job for whoever the new coach is. This isn’t like Florida State pushing out Bowden, where they could expect a lot of high-level interest in the job. It’s probably more like if Boise State fired Peterson after about 5 mediocre years.

      • bullet says:

        Wichita St. is historically very good in baseball.

        • Arch Stanton says:

          Yes, but that was all under Stephenson. He was hired to actually re-start the program, it had been shut down from 1970 through 1977. Gene took them to the NCAA postseason in 1980, it was the first ever tournament appearance for the school. Plus, I think that a lot of the WSU success came in an era when baseball was more of an afterthought at a lot of the bigger BSC schools.
          There is definitely more competition in college baseball now. I’m just not sure that the opening will attract a lot of attention from the big time coaching prospects. Maybe Gene wouldn’t ever get WSU back to the heights he had previously taken them, but I doubt whoever they hire will either.

        • ccrider55 says:

          But only with the fired coach over the last six decades.

  49. frug says:

    Completely off topic, but I remember a couple months ago I posted that based on the most recent MBB attendance numbers the Big 10 would see its attendance streak end in 2014. However, I was cleaning up my computer and glanced at the spreadsheet I made and realized I forgot to factor in Pitt’s move to the ACC.

    I added Pitt in and reran the 2012 numbers (the most recent available) and here is what I got

    B1G – 12,354
    SEC – 11,240
    ACC – 11,150
    XII – 10,587

    I don’t have the numbers entered for any other conference, but I don’t think any other can quite catch the Big 4.

    Obviously the attendance numbers will change between now and then, but barring any additional realignment the Big 10 should be able to continue to lead the nation in attendance.

    • frug says:

      Just checked and the new Big East will be at 10,531 and I don’t think anyone else will be above 8,000.

    • wmwolverine says:

      Nebraska’s attendance will see a sharp spike upwards with their new arena. Crisler Arena is way too small for Michigan, they could see a lot more seats than what they have.

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        Perhaps, but I don’t see Michigan replacing Crisler anytime soon, especially after they just renovated it.

  50. djbuck says:

    The BIG has positioned itself to be a the BIGGEST cash Cow heading into the East coast with the addition of the eastern seaboard markets with the N.Y. leading the way.
    A couple other notes.
    With the launches of Fox Sports 1, then 2, it will work hand in hand with BTN. Already being a partner. It is a reason for the BIGs move east.
    Expansion is not over by any means.
    Look. I respect those to want to prop up both the ACC and the B12.
    But understand, they can’t grow as conferences and will never have the independent financial status as the BIG, SEC, and the PAC12.
    Maryland is a great example. They were cutting programs even after the ACC
    received a new tv deal. But didn’t come close what the other conferences under their existing contracts. Maryland, A founding member of the ACC, had to make a move.
    Now your beginning to see more of a tie between the BIG and the ACC. The new bowl lineups, etc.
    Lets put one thing to rest. The GOR means nothing.
    If teams want to go for greener pastures it will happen.
    B!2 teams have left and they’ve had the GOR. B12 is in the same position as the ACC.
    No where to grow. Texas will hitch up it’s wagon to the BIG. They have to position themselves against the momentum of A&M going into its second year of the SEC.
    LHN has proved to be unsuccessful.
    The BIG, SEC, and P12 have positioned themselves as they’re own entities as well as partners.
    They will be magnets to the teams that want bigger pieces of the pie and exposure.
    It’s not about bashing the other conferences or wanting to see their demise.
    As we all know, It’s money.
    It has been sad to have seen the old SWC, Big 8, East, and the rivalries that they gave us,
    fade away over the last 20 years.

    • duffman says:

      On a related note

      http://www.sbnation.com/college-football/2013/6/5/4396230/ole-miss-texas-longhorn-network-2013

      The issues discussed about Texas canceling the discussion with the B1G game a few years ago had overtones of TV conflict more than school conflict and may have been the canary in the coal mine for future inter conference scheduling. Will the BTN give up the away game rights especially if the home game rights become the subject of conflict between competing media coverage?

      From the article :

      The University of Mississippi will get paid for the game, no doubt, but as a member of the opulent SEC, that’s a footnote. The point of the game was and is national exposure, and the Rebels just got a taste of what sent Texas A&M into the neighborhood.

      • mnfanstc says:

        I believe that the Texas/Minnesota home and home series (which had been planned for 2013/14 if I remember correctly) was canceled due to some rights issues… I think it was little bit of BTN and a little bit of the soon to launch LHN thing going on… Sorry, I do not remember the specifics…

        • duffman says:

          mnfanstc,

          That sounds similar to what I remember but I can not remember the exact specifics either.

          • mnfanstc says:

            This is one of the cool things about this blog–someone always seems to be able to dig up information that may be years old… ‘Course, this is not that old… Also, found that I was incorrect on original dates… Has been quite the saga anyway… Texas home and home canceled. In comes North Carolina to replace. Kill and Co. decide to pay NC to cancel the series. B1G says no more FCS teams. Kill and Co. revisit sked—agree to home and home with TCU in 2014/2015 with TCU paying the buyout to remove the FCS game that they are replacing. New Mexico State fills out the slot that the FCS school was in… Ends up being a solid series on the sked, with a positive on the financial end… Now if the Gopher’s can somehow knock off those pesky Horned Frogs…

    • bullet says:

      You’re mistaken about the GORs. Noone has left under a GOR. Texas A&M left the Big 12 before it was proposed and Missouri wouldn’t sign (even though it had been their idea). Everyone has made their commitments and no one in the Big 5 is leaving during this contract cycle. No conference is going to risk trying to pull a school out of a long term GOR. They will just wait.

      LHN is as unsuccessful as BTN was (excluding Fox owned DTV) in the first couple of years. It still remains to be seen. They haven’t signed up the top 4 companies (T-W, Comcast, DTV, Dish), but they have signed up the next tier (Cox, Charter, UVerse, Verizon). Even the NFL network had difficulties at the start.

      • Andy says:

        as always you’re full of sh*t. GOR was Missouri’s idea? Yeah right. Other leagues have been using GOR for a long time. Did Missouri agree that it was a potential source of stability? Yes. Did Texas and others block it? Yes. Did Missouri agree to sign it at the last minute when they already had one foot out the door? No.

        • bullet says:

          You president was pushing a GOR and was a leader in trying to keep the league together once Nebraska got the Big 10 slot-at least he was a leader in trying to keep it together-until he wasn’t.

          It sounds like you are agreeing with me. So basically you’re saying I’m full of it because I’m right? Pretty bizarre.

        • BruceMcF says:

          ” Did Missouri agree that it was a potential source of stability? Yes. Did Texas and others block it? Yes.”

          So, IOW, you are saying it was Missouri’s idea, and Texas and others blocked it.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      The BIG, SEC, and P12 have positioned themselves as they’re own entities as well as partners. They will be magnets to the teams that want bigger pieces of the pie and exposure.

      I am a bit skeptical about the Pac-12 — not its survival, but its ability to lure any more schools. I think schools in the central time zone prefer not to be playing a lot on the west coast, where night games finish past midnight in the Eastern time zone, and don’t get much TV exposure.

      And yes, @bullet is correct: no school has left any league while a GOR was in force.

      • boscatar says:

        If the PAC 12 grabs 4 Big 12 teams, there actually are not many west coast games for the former Big 12 teams. For instance, Texas would play 6 games in the central time zone, 2 games in the mountain time zone, and only 1 game in the pacific time zone:

        Oklahoma[central]
        at Oklahoma St.[central]
        Texas Tech[central]
        at Utah[mountain]
        Colorado[central]
        at Arizona[mountain]
        ASU[central]
        at UCLA[Pacific]
        Stanford[central]

        • boscatar says:

          You can easily schedule the pacific time zone game during the day (3:30pm ET) or at 5pm PT(8ET). Mountain time zone games are obviously even easier to accommodate.

        • wmwolverine says:

          Texas bluntly doesn’t want to play the Arizona schools, Utah, Colorado, Oklahoma State and Texas Tech EVERY year. It’s Texas’ decision whether they stay in the Big XII, where they go (knowing leaving would kill that conference) and who they take with them. They have that type of power.

          • ccrider55 says:

            So now they play Baylor, TT, OkST, TCU, ISU, WVU, KU, KSU EVERY year. That’s better?

      • BruceMcF says:

        But the Pac-10 were on the edge of getting Texas, before the deal fell apart.

        The Pac-12′s challenge is simple population geography. Texas is the only direction for their conference to move now and pick up substantial population centers, and in the middle of Texas is one of the perennially wealthiest athletic departments in the country that is not about to go cap in hand to anybody begging for a spot.

        The point of scheduling night games IS the TV exposure, and scheduling a Pac-12 game so that its on in prime time in the Eastern is not that difficult.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          But the Pac-10 were on the edge of getting Texas, before the deal fell apart.

          They talked a lot. How close they came depends on which media account you believe.

          The point of scheduling night games IS the TV exposure, and scheduling a Pac-12 game so that its on in prime time in the Eastern is not that difficult.

          What’s difficult is not scheduling them, but getting them picked up on the major networks’ national feeds. Texas vs. USC would be a blockbuster, but that’s just one game. There’s also basketball and all of the non-revenue sports, and in some of those sports weeknight games/meets are common. You’d have teams getting home at 4:00am Central Time.

          Of course, I realize that if the money differential is great enough, the non-revenues will have to suck it up, as they always do. But it was a factor that many of the UT coaches were concerned about, and as you’ve pointed out, UT is wealthy enough that it doesn’t need to go begging for money.

          If both sides were eager enough to make a deal, they could agree to minimize night games in the Pacific time zone, but it’s an extra concern that Central time zone schools have if they want to consider the Pac-12.

    • BruceMcF says:

      Schools often want to move to greener pastures ~ conference realignment happens because the greener pastures are holding the gate open. What the GOR does is remove the incentive for the greener pastures to open the gate.

      Its quite plausibly JUST a pause, because nobody signs an open-ended grant of rights, and people will look at their options as a GOR is coming closer to expiration, but it is, in any event, a pause long enough for the underlying incentives to shift one way or the other, as the media market evolves over the coming decade.

    • jae1837 says:

      I take issue with this statement because it is false.

      “Maryland is a great example. They were cutting programs even after the ACC
      received a new tv deal. But didn’t come close what the other conferences under their existing contracts. Maryland, A founding member of the ACC, had to make a move.”

      According to the Sports Business Journal, while UMD did have a deficit, it was no where near the catastrophic levels that they portrayed to the BOT in order to get the vote to go to the B1G. Here is the link and the quote from the article:

      http://m.sportsbusinessdaily.com/Journal/Issues/2012/12/03/In-Depth/Maryland.aspx

      “When the athletic department cut those seven sports this year, its projections showed total deficits climbing as high as $17 million in 2017 if the department didn’t act. What was missing from those projections, however, was the new revenue that would come from the ACC’s 15-year, $3.6 billion TV deal with ESPN, which was renegotiated after Syracuse and Pittsburgh were added. Nor did the department have the information on new revenue that would come from the college football playoff.”

      Now if UMD wants to go to the B1G because they B1G will distribute more money per team per year, that is fine and I have no problems with the move per se. It is how the UMD administration exaggerated a financial situation to make the move. If the benefits of changing from the ACC to the B1G are so advantageous to the school, then why did the administration feel the need to magnify a mole hill financial situation into a mountain? Look, I am not debating that the B1G offers advantages that the ACC cannot replicate. i.e. more revenue and the CIC. Just be honest about the motives of the move and do not resort to these types of tactics.

      • Psuhockey says:

        UMD fans and alumni weren’t too thrilled with the move. Since it was essentially for money, the administration had to exaggerate their deficit to make the move seem necessary.

        • vp19 says:

          Add the adjective “initially” before “weren’t too thrilled with the move,” and you’d be on target. There are still a few ACC holdouts — particularly those who only care about men’s basketball — but most of the College Park community has embraced the upcoming shift (especially after some of the ACC’s retaliatory moves regarding scheduling and the lawsuit).

    • Transic says:

      Expansion “may not be over” but the B1G understands that if Grants of Rights are challenged in one conference then all Grants of Rights could be challenged on similar grounds. This is not making a prediction. Just presenting a scenario which could explain why no other major schools may move in the near future. I think we are set for the time being. You say it’s about money. OK, perhaps the money is helping certain schools that would move stay put this time. ND’s move to the ACC is essentially revenue-neutral to ND. They gain nothing but the ability to still get TV contracts as a quasi-independent. Right about 2025 they might get another chance at looking at these things. By then, perhaps, the media model would change sufficiently that it no longer pays to realign.

      In the meantime, I would like to see how the B1G stacks up against the ACC competitively for the next 10-15 years. In football, I think the B1G would still be perceived as the better conference, although if FSU starts winning against name opponents again, Miami comes back from the doldrums, VT wins meaningful games on a regular basis and/or other ACC teams like UVa, Pitt, SU or UNC truly step up then the story might be a little different. It’s in basketball that would really be fascinating. Future B1G-ACC challenges promise to be gangbusters. How would you like Michigan and Notre Dame in hoops? Duke and Maryland? Indiana and Louisville? Pitt and Penn State? Ohio State and UNC? MSU and Syracuse? Needless to say, both conferences would have their minnows like VT, RU, NW or BC but Miami is rising as a program. It’ll take time for them to recover from the defections but now the Canes have something to go for while football is still recovering.

      From SI.com: http://college-basketball.si.com/2013/06/07/acc-tv-ratings-national-interest/?sct=uk_t11_a0

      Which conference is going to be king in basketball with the demise of the old Big East?

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        In the meantime, I would like to see how the B1G stacks up against the ACC competitively for the next 10-15 years. In football, I think the B1G would still be perceived as the better conference, although if FSU starts winning against name opponents again, Miami comes back from the doldrums, VT wins meaningful games on a regular basis and/or other ACC teams like UVa, Pitt, SU or UNC truly step up then the story might be a little different.

        You’re talking about a pretty remote possibility. Dominance in college sports is built up over decades and is only very rarely overturned. The kings tend to remain kings, the princes tend to remain princes, and so forth. The national powers have advantages in facilities, revenue, bowl tie-ins, TV deals, etc., that are very difficult for others to overcome.

      • vp19 says:

        Like the former Big East, the ACC may be able to claim superpower basketball status by default, since its football prowess is relatively weak and it has to put virtually all its eggs in the hoop basket. But if you combine football and men’s basketball, the two most high-profile collegiate sports, the Big Ten will have a profile second to none, even if it may not be perceived as #1 in either endeavor. Putting them together (with 50% for each sport — financially, they’re obviously of unequal weight, but I’m looking at what the public sees in terms of competitive quality from August through April), I’d rank the BCS leagues as follows:

        1. Big Ten
        2. Big 12
        3. SEC
        4. ACC
        5. Pac-12

  51. Eric says:

    With all the realignment and quick changes, I thought it might be good to look at how exactly this is going to effect schedules.

    Below you’ll see a percent for teams under football and basketball. For football that’s how often teams play each other. For basketball, it’s how often they play a home and home in a year.

    Note: I think my math is right on all of these, but feel free to correct if it looks off.

    ACC
    Football:
    7 teams (6 in division and 1 locked crossover): play 100% of the time
    6 teams: play 17% of the time

    Basketball: (percent is how often they play teams twice a year)
    2 teams: 100%
    12 teams: 17%

    Big Ten
    Football (everyone but Indiana and Purdue):
    6 teams: 100%
    6 teams: 45%
    1 team (Indiana or Purdue): 29%

    Football (for Purdue/Indiana):
    7 teams (division teams and Indiana/Purdue): 100%
    6 teams: 29%

    Basketball
    13 teams: 39%

    Big 12
    Football
    9 teams: 100%

    Basketball
    9 teams: 100%

    PAC-12
    Football (non-California schools)
    5 teams: 100%
    4 teams: 75%
    2 teams (California teams in other division): 50%

    Football (California schools)
    7 teams (divisions teams and other two California teams): 100%
    4 teams: 50%

    Basketball
    1 team (locked rival): 100%
    10 teams: 60%

    SEC
    Football
    7 teams (6 in division and 1 locked crossover): 100%
    6 teams: 17%

    Basketball
    1 team: 100%
    12 teams: 33%

  52. Sam Brylski says:

    Random comment, but seeing the unbalanced 39% for B1G basketball sparks my OCD. Here’s my solution.

    Regular Season: Use the football divisions and go to 19 games. 12 home-and-homes against your division, and 7 games against the other division. Eliminate the separate conference champion for the regular season and a tournament and just have two regular season division champions and then an overall conference champion determined by the tournament.

    Postseason Tournament: Two divisional (or cross-divisional if you want to get creative and add more interdivisional games) brackets, with the 1 and 2 seeds getting a bye. Start with 3-v-6 and 4-v-5. The winners play the 1 and 2 seeds on day two. The winners of that play in the conference semifinal on day three, and then finally, you have the conference championship game.

    This adds one additional regular season game for each team and really crescendo’s the season as a whole. I always thought having a separate regular season champion takes away from the tournament, and winning a regular season championship doesn’t have the same luster as winning a championship game. Best of both worlds.

    Regular season still matters, because there is incentive to move from 7th to 6th (make the tournament), to move from 5th to 4th (tournament home game), 3rd to 2nd (tournament bye), and 2nd to 1st (division champion).

    If you wanted to benefit the regular season winners even more, you could move to a ladder-style tournament instead, which might be interesting.

    • Eric says:

      It’s a well thought out idea, but I’ve always been the reverse. To me, the regular season champion is the champion and the tournament is a fun little event. Taking away the regular season champion would mean I probably wouldn’t follow basketball at all until March. The only reason I pay attention now is that I can about the Big Ten title. Take that away and replace them with divisional titles and there’s nothing to really play for the entire regular season.

      The Tournament will be fun regardless, but it would be really easy to mess up the regular season.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      Use the football divisions and go to 19 games.

      That would be wildly unpopular. The football divisions solve a football problem. Football needs to identify a team to attend the Rose Bowl, and there aren’t enough weeks on the schedule for a full round-robin or a post-season tournament. The NCAA permits just a single conference championship game (not a tournament), and they allow it only if you are split into two divisions. The division structure is a necessary evil, as every other permitted option (under the current rules) is worse.

      In basketball, the western teams would never agree to a scheduling system where all of them see the eastern teams just once a year, every year, given that Michigan, MSU, OSU, and Indiana, are all in the east. They agreed to that for football, which really can’t avoid having divisions. Basketball just doesn’t need them. Why should Rutgers have a permanent home & home vs. Indiana, when Purdue does not? It would make no sense.

      I always thought having a separate regular season champion takes away from the tournament, and winning a regular season championship doesn’t have the same luster as winning a championship game.

      I am not so sure that the schools that actually won those titles, particularly minded winning them.

      • wmwolverine says:

        In basketball, the only need imo is for each team to have 1-3 dedicated rivals that they play twice every season and play everyone else at least once. I’d love for M to play MSU & Ohio twice every year, even with the tougher schedule. Divisions are certainly not needed in basketball.

        • Marc Shepherd says:

          In basketball, the only need imo is for each team to have 1-3 dedicated rivals that they play twice every season and play everyone else at least once. I’d love for M to play MSU & Ohio twice every year, even with the tougher schedule.

          The coaches and ADs are well aware of the issue, and for whatever reason, consistently decide not to lock any rivalries. I’m pretty sure that just about everyone on the Michigan side would be pleased to see MSU and OSU twice a year, every year, despite the tougher schedule. It must surely be the other schools standing in the way: they want equal access to the opponents that sell out the gym and are more likely to get picked up on ESPN and CBS.

          • bullet says:

            I was surprised the SEC didn’t lock Kentucky/Tennessee. That has been a very bitter rivalry for decades. Tennessee has traditionally given UK fits in Knoxville. They locked Kentucky/Florida which is the one that has more TV appeal.

    • Brian says:

      Sam Brylski,

      “Random comment, but seeing the unbalanced 39% for B1G basketball sparks my OCD.”

      It is annoying, especially since it also means valuable rivalries aren’t played annually.

      “Regular Season: Use the football divisions and go to 19 games. 12 home-and-homes against your division, and 7 games against the other division.”

      Problem 1 – The football divisions are terribly unbalanced for hoops. IN, MSU, OSU, MI and UMD versus WI, IL and PU?

      Problem 2 – Some good games can never be home and home (PU/IN, WI/MSU, IN/IL, etc).

      I’d rather lock 2 or 3 “rivals” per school and let the others rotate through being home and homes. 13 + 2 locked + 5 rotating through the other 10 = 18 games like now and it means a home and home half the time against everyone.

      “Eliminate the separate conference champion for the regular season and a tournament and just have two regular season division champions and then an overall conference champion determined by the tournament.”

      The B10 only had a regular season champ for a long time. The tournament only started in 1998 and is just a money grab. Many fans view the regular season champ as the real champ.

      “Postseason Tournament: Two divisional (or cross-divisional if you want to get creative and add more interdivisional games) brackets, with the 1 and 2 seeds getting a bye. Start with 3-v-6 and 4-v-5. The winners play the 1 and 2 seeds on day two. The winners of that play in the conference semifinal on day three, and then finally, you have the conference championship game.”

      Conferences with divisions have been going away from using them in hoops, especially in their tournament. The #2 in a bad division may be worse than #4 in the good division. Why should they get an easier path in the tournament?

    • BruceMcF says:

      “I always thought having a separate regular season champion takes away from the tournament, and winning a regular season championship doesn’t have the same luster as winning a championship game. Best of both worlds.”

      Boosting your NCAA tournament seeding is prize enough for the tournament winner, whether or not it happens to be the conference champion. And before looking for solutions, it does make sense to see if there’s a problem: the Big Ten tournament seems just fine as far as “luster” goes.

      • jj says:

        Winning the regular season is far more difficult than winning the tourney. Usually, sometimes schedules really impacts the season.

        • BruceMcF says:

          Two true statements. No idea what conclusion you are hoping your reader will draw from them.

          Strength of schedule impacts the season two ways ~ easier strength of schedule makes it easier to notch up wins, a tougher strength of schedule makes it easier to land an at-large bid for a given win-loss record. The strength of schedule issue argues against divisional play in BBall in the Big Ten.

  53. frug says:

    http://bigstory.ap.org/article/penn-state-trustees-say-changes-are-well-under-way

    In news that surprises no one, Tom Corbett’s lawsuit against the NCAA has been dismissed.

    • frug says:

      With the Big Ten moving to a nine game schedule and Illinois’ stated desire to play a game in Chicago ever year I’m not sure Illinois could agree to this.

      Maybe if the game rotated between Soldier Field and St. Louis, but I’m not sure that would even work.

      • BruceMcF says:

        Will the Illini be playing NW in Chicago in their four conference home game year or their five conference home game year?

        Since one way to be “in Chicago every year” for the two or four years of a Mizzou contract (if four years, I presume spread over six or eight) would be to relocate an Illini home game against Mizzou to Chicago a year the Illini host NW, while the Mizzou home game is played in St. Louis a year that NW hosts the Illini.

        As far as the NW/Mizzou “alternate” suggested above, I’m not clear how that continues the Mizzou / Illini rivalry that the St. Louis Sports Commission president was referring to.

        • Richard says:

          Right, for Illinois, playing @NU counts as a game in Chicagoland. However, with a 9-game conference slate, playing in StL would still be difficult while maintaining 7 games in Chambana & 1 game in Chicagoland.

          If the game @NU is with 4 home conference games, the 3 remaining OOC games would have to be In Chambana to reach 7 home games. Then the next year when they have 5 home conference games, 2 of the OOC games would have to be In Chambana to reach 7 home games, but then their other game would have to be in Chicago.

          In other words, the Illini can’t maintain 7 home games in Chambana, play in Chicagoland every year, and still play in StL. If they’re OK with only playing 6 home games in Chambana some years (and count games in Chicago and/or StL as home games to say they have 7 home games), then it’s possible.

          • BruceMcF says:

            If the Illini get the ticket revenue for the game in Chicago and the Mizzou the ticket revenue for the game in St. Louis, they’d have some justification calling those Illini and Mizzou home games, respectively ~ though somebody’d be sure to whinge, because of the lost college town economic benefit.

    • Brian says:

      What about MO/NW alternating between STL and Soldier FIeld?

      • Richard says:

        Why would Northwestern do that? I actually live in StL now, but we really don’t get a lot of students or send a lot of students or get many recruits from here.

        I’m quite certain that CA, TX, & NY all rank higher than in all those categories. We recruit nationally for both the student body and athletics, so a permanent Midwestern OOC game when we hit all parts of the Midwest during conference play doesn’t make much sense.

        A permanent cersies with Stanford or even Rice makes much more sense than one with Mizzou.

        • Andy says:

          I’m pretty sure Stanford is going to start playing Northwestern soon.

          I agree that Northwestern and Mizzou are a bad fit.

          Good fits for Mizzou, realignment butthurt aside, would be:

          Kansas
          Illinois
          Nebraska
          Iowa
          Colorado
          Indiana
          Oklahoma
          Michigan State
          Iowa State
          Purdue

          Those are the schools that are either decent matches with or have well established connections to Mizzou. Northwestern and Missouri don’t have all that much in common, and when they played each other in the Alamo Bowl a few years back the tickets didn’t sell all that well.

        • Brian says:

          I wasn’t suggesting a permanent series, just an occasional series. It’s an easy way to get a Soldier Field game every so often, plus neutral sites tend to draw better TV coverage than the actual game merits. NW/Stanford playing at the 49ers new place and Soldier Field would also work. I’m not sure Rice is a big enough draw to play at Reliant.

          • Richard says:

            Uh, Brian, if Northwestern wanted to play someone at Soldier Field, they could schedule any home game there (even a B10 opponent). In fact, Wrigley will be NU’s home-away-from-home occasionally for the near future. The problem is that NU has very little reason to visit StL (or any other Midwestern city OOC considering our national alumni & recruiting + the B10 footprint). From 2008-2018, NU had/will have 13 OOC away games. Only one of them is in a Midwestern city (when NU will visit ND). That’s on purpose.

            BTW, yes, NU will play Stanford 6 of the 8 years 2015-2022.

          • Brian says:

            Well, Soldier Field would have to agree first (not every NW home game would be acceptable to them). Second, I didn’t say MO was necessary for NW to play at Soldier Field, just that it would be easy. Third, NW recruits STL and MO for FB so playing a game there could be useful to Fitz. Fourth, 40% of NW students are from the midwest so occasionally playing an OOC game in a part of the midwest NW doesn’t usually visit may be good for student recruiting and alumni. St. Louis is home to a NAA club, one of the relatively few in the US (less than 50).

          • Richard says:

            Brian, those arguments are weak.

            “Well, Soldier Field would have to agree first (not every NW home game would be acceptable to them).”

            Indeed, however, quite a few B10 opponents would be deemed more attractive than Mizzou (nothing against Mizzou; Chicago has more grads from a few other B10 schools, however). That’s not a strong argument for a neutral site series with Mizzou.

            “Second, I didn’t say MO was necessary for NW to play at Soldier Field, just that it would be easy.”

            Huh? What do you mean by “easy”? It wouldn’t be “easy” to move a home game vs. Iowa, Wisconsin, or PU to Soldier Field? Again, a poor argument.

            “Third, NW recruits STL and MO for FB so playing a game there could be useful to Fitz.”

            NU recruits virtually everywhere there are people in the US, so the argument that it would be “useful for Ftz” could apply to almost every place in the US. In the past 4 years, NU has recruited 7 CA kids, 9 TX kids, and 1 kid from StL. Also 1 kid from Denver. Your argument could be used to justify a series with CU in Denver just as easily as one in StL with Mizzou. In any case, you do not provide a compelling reason for why NU would value playing Mizzou in StL rather than reserving their precious OOC away slots for CA or TX schools. Another weak argument.

            “40% of NW students are from the midwest so occasionally playing an OOC game in a part of the midwest NW doesn’t usually visit may be good for student recruiting and alumni.”

            40% of the students are from the Midwest. However, roughly 4 of 5 (80%) away games and all home games will be in the Midwest (or Midwest and Northeast). Furthermore, many of the alums in the Midwest are within driving distance of Chicagoland and can go see home games. 25% of NU’s student body come from the South, West, or Southwest. Even if NU plays every OOC away game in those regions, they would be underserved, so why would NU want to play more away games in the Midwest? If anything, this point is an argument against playing an OOC away game in the Midwest. Do you realize that when you make stupid arguments, you sound pigheaded & stupid, Brian?

            Look Brian, Andy, a Mizzou alum, and I, an NU alum, both agree that NU and Mizzou playing in StL makes no sense. I can only conclude that you are continuing with this argument instead of backing down solely because you are pigheaded/obdurate/disagreeable.

    • Andy says:

      That game always sold well and was always on ESPN. It was good rivarly. Unfortunately Illinois backed out after Missouri won 7 straight games. Hopefully they’ll reconsider if the money is good, which it should be.

      • Andy says:

        Missouri is currently set to play a home and home with Indiana and then a home and home with Purdue. I wonder if Missouri would schedule two B1G non-conference games in a year?

      • Todd says:

        Believe it was 6 straight games.

        • Andy says:

          My bad, Missouri leads the series 17-7, but you’re right, it’s only been 6 straight.

          Also 4 straight in basketball, but Illinios leads that series 20-12. But the series started 9-1 Illinois so Missouri has been gradually catching up.

          • Andy says:

            Actually, technically no, haven’t been catching up, still 8 games back. But the two teams have evenly split over the last 22 years in basketball.

  54. GW says:

    Frank,
    Here’s a link from Wikipedia that JHU will apply to CIC.
    “Johns Hopkins University will apply for membership in the CIC, as it is joining the Big Ten Conference as a lacrosse-only member.[8]“

    • gfunk says:

      That’s merely a citation & linkg to the PSU athletics page, their story. We’ll find out down the road.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      Wow! Mizzou’s athletic budget ranks 12th in the SEC. That’s a lot of catching-up to do.

      • Andy says:

        Yeah, it’s amazing Missouri has won as much as they have considering the resources they’ve had to work with.

        Missouri’s Conference payouts:
        2010 – 9 Million
        2011 – 11 Million
        2012 – Zero (would have been 12.4 million)
        2013 – 20.7 Million
        2014 – 30-34 Million

        Athletic Budgets:
        1998 – 13.7 Million
        2012 – 67 Million (12th in SEC)
        2013-14 – 73 to 75 Million
        2014-15 – Presumably somewhere between 83 – 89 Million, just accounting for the increased conference payout.

        Also, Missouri is currently in phase 1 of a 3 phase stadium expansion project. In 3 or 4 years Missouri’s stadium capacity will have increased from 71k to 83k, and will have added a bunch of club seating and renovated luxury suites. That should positively impact revenue as well. Donations are climbing as well, and donation requirements for season tickets are being phased up. I don’t think it’s unrealistic to expect that Missouri’s budget could be somewhere in the $90Ms in 5 years or so, which would definitley put them in the top 20 nationally even accounting for increased payouts around the SEC and B1G. It would also bring Missouri closer to the middle of the pack in the SEC, although still probably in the bottom half.

  55. Brian says:

    http://www.elevenwarriors.com/2013/06/22656/first-look-artist-rendering-of-the-2522-new-seats-going-into-ohio-stadium-for-2014

    Not only is OSU adding 2522 seats for 2014, they’ll also install permanent lights for night games.

    • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

      I’m reserving judgement until I see a ground level view. I’m cool with it as long as the new ‘wings’ remain clearly separate from main stadium.

  56. dave says:

    For ACC mens lacrosse, the simplest thing to do is bring in Army as an affiliate to bring up the number to 6 mens teams so they could form a conference. It doesn’t have to be a permanent deal. BC, Louisville, Pitt or Virginia Tech could raise their mens team up to a division 1. Also, they do not have a womens program so it wouldn’t add to an already crowded womens ACC lacrosse conference (8 teams).

    • gfunk says:

      I think people tend to forget that JHU to the BIG was more practical because they’re D3 in every other sport. Army presents another Notre Dame problem. If I’m not mistaken, they are D1 in all sports. If I was Army, I’d want all in. The ACC may benefit from ND membership in most sports, but I think they’re obviously being used for the recruiting advantages. ND continues to raise my suspicions with this Tx deal, but you can’t fault them for doing what’s best for them.

      • Dave says:

        I believe that Army will wish to stay independent in football after their Conference USA debacle from a few years ago. The only other sport at which they are competitive on a similar level is lax I think that knowing full well that they need the ACC more than the ACC needs them they would join for lax if asked. An opportunity is still an opportunity.

    • Scarlet_Lutefisk says:

      The big hurdle (outside of money) faced by schools like BC, Pitt, VPI etc with adding a men’s team is Title 9 compliance.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      For ACC mens lacrosse, the simplest thing to do is bring in Army as an affiliate to bring up the number to 6 mens teams so they could form a conference.

      I don’t think NCAA rules alow that. Army’s main conference is the Patriot League. They’re independent in football, and they play some sports elsewhere that the Patriot doesn’t have. But I believe that if your home conference sponsors a sport, you can’t play that sport in another conference.

      If I was Army, I’d want all in.

      The Patriot League offers much softer competition. In most sports, Army vs. an ACC schedule would be brutal.

    • frug says:

      ACC doesn’t need 6 teams to form a conference; they need 6 members to get an auto-bid. But the ACC is so strong they don’t need an auto-bid to guarantee their champ a spot in the tournament.

  57. bullet says:

    http://www.ncaa.org/wps/wcm/connect/public/ncaa/resources/latest+news/2013/may/mississippi+state+provides+improper+recruiting+benefits

    2 scholarships struck me as a rather light penalty. It was only 1 recruit, but was repeated payments as well as the car.

    • Brian says:

      Especially since they say the coach knew about it and didn’t report it. The coach did get a 1 year show cause, but the NCAA said he was very helpful or it would have been worse.

  58. Biological Imperative says:

    so if the LHN is bundled up with the SEC network, I think the only fair thing to do would be to split up the charges and the LHN gets 1/16 equal share of the carriage charge, That would be equal to what they earned and if they get more than that they should refuse and not demand anymore. ESPN of course would still owe them their $10 million a year or whichever is greater. I think only a longhorn would not see the justice in this as reasonable. I’m sure they would never want to take anything that wasn’t earned.

    your thoughts please.

  59. Carl says:

    Related to the past discussions of culture, dialect, and conference realignment. Totally fascinating.

    From Business Insider: 22 Maps That Show How Americans Speak English Totally Differently From Each Other:

    http://www.businessinsider.com/22-maps-that-show-the-deepest-linguistic-conflicts-in-america-2013-6

    • bullet says:

      Fun list. Mine made sense except that I’m not sure where I got “crown” for “crayon” and I am definitely “Carmle” which I must have picked up in Indiana and Ohio, unlike most of my vocabulary.

    • Richard says:

      Unsurprisingly, I’m a blend of Chicago & StL (but a “soda” person, not “pop”; interestingly, “soda” is very coastal while “pop” dominates the Midwest except for StL and Milwaukee, which are “soda” strongholds), but southern with “lawyer” and KY with “you all”. Might be the southern IL influence there.

  60. Brian says:

    Indiana upset FSU in Game 1 of the Super Regional, 10-9. IN will be the home team for Game 2.

    The other winner so far is UNC over SC, 6-5.

  61. Alan from Baton Rouge says:

    My Tigers are the team to punch their ticket to Omaha, by sweeping Oklahoma with their 1st and 2nd round draft pick starting pitchers. Last night our Sophomore ace Aaron Nola out-dualed the the #3 pick in the draft by dialing up a two hit complete game shutout by the score of 2-0. Tonight, our 2nd round pick and bullpen beat Oklahoma’s 2nd round pick and bullpen 11-1.

    • duffman says:

      Congrats for being the first to punch the ticket to the CWS.

    • Brian says:

      So LSU and IN are in. UL and UCLA are, too. Vandy’s great season crashed and burned as UL swept them.

      UNC and SC split 1-1 so far

      Rice is looking to get a split with NCSU
      UVA is looking to get a split with MS St
      OrSU is looking to get a split with KSU

      • Brian says:

        Unfortunately for Rice, they dropped game 2 in 17 innings to NCSU.

        OrSU is up 9-1 in the 4th.

        UVA/MS St was postponed in the 7th due to rain with MS St up 5-3.

  62. Marc Shepherd says:

    On the Huge Show this week (a local radio program), Michigan AD Dave Brandon had this to say about expansion:

    “I believe we are positioned so we could operate on this for a long time, with no rush or need to expand further,” he said. “We’ll keep our eyes open. I have believed for some time conference expansion is not over. As interests move and different conferences grow and expand, it creates opportunities and ignites interest in taking a look at how you compete with what’s around you.”

  63. Brian says:

    http://miamiherald.typepad.com/sports-buzz/2013/06/sports-illustrated-preparing-umncaa-expose-shapiro-makes-another-allegation.html

    Shapiro is making more allegations against Miami. The latest is that coaches gave him injury information that he used for gambling purposes.

  64. Brian says:

    http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/college-football/news/20130607/alamo-bowl-big-12.ap/?sct=uk_t2_a9

    This isn’t really news, but it’s official that the Alamo will get B12 #2 and P12 #2.

  65. Andy says:

    Question: should non-football playing campuses within a University’s system be counted toward the general alumni power base of a program?

    For example, I keep hearing about how the University of Kansas has more alumni in the KC area (although they actually have slightly less alumni on the Missouri side of the border than Mizzou does, but far more overall). But if Missouri were also able to count alums of the University of Missouri-Kansas City, which does not have a football team or any quality sport to speak of, then the alumni totals would combine to:

    University of Missouri Columbia/Kansas City: 88,093
    University of Kansas: 77,487

    I’m undecided on this. Is it a b.s. argument or is it legit? Seems kind of legit to me but I’m not sure.

    • Andy says:

      On the one hand, I can see how it wouldn’t always work because, for example, Cal Berkley certainly can’t claim UCLA fans. But then maybe sometimes it does. Do UC-Irvine students typically root for UCLA?

      In the case of UMKC, every UMKC person I ever met tended to root for Mizzou in sports, if they followed sports at all. So it seems like they would be sort of an offshoot of Missouri.

      Does it work that way for, say, UT-Dallas? Or Texas A&M-Corpus Christi? Or UMich-Flint? Or U-Maryland-Baltimore? etc.

      • metatron says:

        Sports are generally tied to main campuses, but it’s not uncommon for say, Wolverine fans to go to UofM-Flint (who being students, also get student tickets!).

      • frug says:

        Do UC-Irvine students typically root for UCLA?

        No Way! Screw the Bruins, Anteater pride!

        Actually, I have no idea, I just like that UC-Irvine’s nickname is the Anteaters.

        • Brian says:

          I doubt they root for UCLA except maybe in FB. They are D-I after all, and compete with UCLA in hoops, baseball, water polo, volleyball, soccer, etc. Most likely their FB rooting interests are spread, but I’d guess many root for USC because they’re better than UCLA.

        • ccrider55 says:

          How bout the UC Santa Cruz Banana Slugs? Must be something in the water…

        • Kevin says:

          Most University of Wisconsin satellite campus students are Badger fans.

        • Andy says:

          I did an informal survery on another message board, and peope associated with UM-Rolla (now known as the Missouri University of Science and Technology) and the University of Missouri-St. Louis tend to be mostly Mizzou fans. Some UMKC guys said that UMKC students are more split in that there are a fair number of Kansans who come in from out of state and they’re less likely to be Mizzou fans, but the local kids who go there tend to favor Mizzou.

          So I guess I’d say that my guess is if a satellite campus lacks a football team, then its students probably root for the nearest state flagship school that has a football team, although their loyalty isn’t as solid as students who actually attend the flagship school.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Polo shirt fans, a step above the t-shirt variety.

          • BruceMcF says:

            There’s also system campus versus branch campus. AFAIR, OSU-Newark were overwhelmingly Buckeyes fans, but then Newark is in Central Ohio, so that just says that most students of a local commuter branch campus are actually local commuters.

    • Arch Stanton says:

      Why not just count everyone in the KC area as University of Missouri alumni?

      Wouldn’t that help you pad your numbers even more? I mean, you are involved in very important internet debates about MIzzou’s attractiveness as a conference expansion target in a number of hypothetical scenarios and you needn’t tie yourself down to actual definitions of words.

      • Andy says:

        I was asking a sensible and honest question. You decided to spazz out about it like you do to pretty much everything I say. And yet I’m supposedly the unreasonable one.

      • Andy says:

        Implicit in what I was saying was that other schools could maybe do the same thing. It would boost the numbers of Michigan, Penn State, Texas A&M, etc. Schools with largish satellite campuses that lack sports programs.

        • bullet says:

          There’s a difference between true satellite campuses like Ohio St. has in Lima and other places or a Miami University-Middleton and “system” schools like Angelo St. who has been in the Texas Tech system for 2 or 3 years and Texas A&M Corpus Christi who has been in the A&M system for about 20 years, but has no other real ties. The Corpus Christi students are probably more likely to be Longhorn fans. UT-Dallas students are more likely to simply be Dallas Cowboy fans. Yet Louisiana Tech isn’t in the LSU system, but I remember a friend telling me how disgusted she was when most of the students left the LT homecoming game at halftime to go watch LSU on TV. There’s no hard and fast rule. Every school is different.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      Question: should non-football playing campuses within a University’s system be counted toward the general alumni power base of a program?

      Counted by whom, and for what purpose? Hard numbers like stadium attendance and TV ratings are well known, and in a sense it doesn’t really matter where the viewers came from. If you’re counting some other way, it would depend on what you’re trying to prove.

      The specifics will vary by state, and the way their university systems are set up. UM–Flint doesn’t play intercollegiate athletics, so you’d probably suspect that if students there root for anybody, they root for UM. UM–Dearborn is in the NAIA; their sports teams are called Wolverines, and they wear maize & blue. In Division I sports, I would say they root for UM.

    • @Andy – As others have said, there’s no real hard and fast rule. Students at the University of Illinois at Chicago, for instance, really don’t care whatsoever for Illini sports. I wouldn’t ever count those 18,000-plus students toward the Illini fan base. The University of Michigan system schools might be a bit different. Generally speaking, “system” school students probably track closely with casual fans, where schools that have large non-alumni/bandwagon fan bases are going to do a better job of capturing the interest of their system schools than those that don’t.

      • Andy says:

        Yeah, it seems like it. For Missouri at least, I’ve been asking around more, and the UMSL students/grads seem to be all about Mizzou. UMKC people are more lukewarm.

  66. gfunk says:

    It looks like IU, aTm, and Florida will be going down to the wire for the Capital One Cup, men’s side. If I’m interpreting the scoring system properly: Fl & aTm’s T&F split NC put them both above Duke, IU’s CWS appearance as well (guaranteed 8th place finish).

    IU is in the driver’s seat – if they can get to the final 6 of the CWS, or higher, they should win it.

    On the other hand, still feel Michigan is getting shafted for their Men’s Swimming title. Far more d1 participation in this sport than regionalized lacrosse. Duke got a huge break with Capital’s system.

    Feel free to correct any mistaken information.

    • Brian says:

      Cap1 Cup is BS being pushed by ESPN.

      • mnfanstc says:

        Ditto on that… The Director’s Cup (while not perfect) reflects a far more balanced look at a school’s overall athletic prowess…

        • vp19 says:

          People would care about it more if schools other than Stanford won it every now and then.

          • gfunk says:

            Honestly, the Captial One Cup is going in the right direction with their weighted system, which does do damage to Stanford’s monopoly. But clearly the fact, which I’ve consistently repeated, that lacrosse outweighs swimming equals misguided & reeks of ESPN’s bias towards the ACC. At this point, most of us know why.

          • @gfunk – I don’t mind the lacrosse weighting (and if anything, the inclusion of women’s lacrosse helps the Big Ten more than anyone, especially with Maryland coming on board). It looks like that I might be the minority here, but the sports that get weighted more look generally fair to me. The only other sport that I’d include is hockey (both men and women), which I think has the same amount of regionalism as lacrosse and is considered to be a legitimately popular sport at many schools. If I were running things, I might change the amount of weighting a bit, where only football and men’s basketball would get the 3 times multiplier and then the other “important” sports have a 2 times multiplier (although I fully acknowledge that there is a political correctness component in not weighing football and men’s basketball on a separate tier despite those being the two sports that most athletic directors are ultimately judged by).

          • Robber Baron says:

            Florida came pretty close to breaking Stanford’s monopoly this year. And it would have been broken had it not been for an improbable tennis championship by a 12th-seeded Cardinal squad.

          • Brian says:

            vp19,

            Actually, I doubt it. Most people don’t care about the overall athletic department.

          • Brian says:

            gfunk,

            “Honestly, the Captial One Cup is going in the right direction with their weighted system,”

            It is going in the right direction? Based on what? What formula are they using to determine what weight each sport gets? What’s the basis for that weighting being “correct”? Making it up as you go to get the desired result is not moving in the right direction to me.

            The whole point of the Director’s Cup is to weight all sports equally in an attempt to measure how well the entire athletic department performs.

          • vp19 says:

            How is it weighted? Ideally, it should be based upon the number of colleges that field a team in that sport, so that baseball and soccer should have more “weight” than largely regional sports such as lacrosse and water polo.

          • gfunk says:

            Brian, read my posts more carefully & do some research between the Director’s & Capital Cups.

            To all, the fact that these sports should be weighted, imo, by the number of D1 programs is a good start. Capital One, again, is half assing it with their formula, but at least the weighing factor is there. I can’t be any more clear in my M&W Swimming vs Lacrosse comparison – Capital One blows it here. Michigan got screwed under the Capital One system. They got 20 points for their Swimming NC. Duke got 60 points for winning the Lacrosse NC. Yet there are far more D1 programs in M. Swimming than M. Lacrosse, less regionalization as well.

            On the other hand, Director’s Cup gives USC 100 points for a Water Polo NC, Princeton 100 points for a Fencing NC. There are 22 f’ing D1 Men’s Water Polo programs, roughly the same in Fencing. That’s less teams than the membership of the SEC & Big12 combined.

            A compromise is in order. And yes, I’m capitalizing sports titles.

          • Brian says:

            gfunk,

            “Brian, read my posts more carefully & do some research between the Director’s & Capital Cups.”

            I read it and I know how both work, actually.

            “To all, the fact that these sports should be weighted, imo, by the number of D1 programs is a good start.”

            But the Cap1 doesn’t do that, as you know. It fairly randomly favors some sports over others. That’s not progress to me. That’s regression back to the reason the DC was started in the first place.

            “Capital One, again, is half assing it with their formula, but at least the weighing factor is there.”

            Bad weighting is worse than equal weighting to me.

            “On the other hand, Director’s Cup gives USC 100 points for a Water Polo NC, Princeton 100 points for a Fencing NC. There are 22 f’ing D1 Men’s Water Polo programs, roughly the same in Fencing. That’s less teams than the membership of the SEC & Big12 combined.”

            Yes, they always give 100 points to #1. But they do scale the points below that based on the size of the field. You can get the same points for finishing 12th, 16th, 32nd, 48th or 64th depending on the number of teams. They also count the top 10 sports for each gender at each school, emphasizing breadth of the department and gender balance. In addition, they rely on NCAA championship results whenever possible, not polls.

            The Cap 1 arbitrarily splits sports into 2 groups and weights one group 3 times as much as the other. The top 10 (and only the top 10) in all sports get points, and they often use polls to determine the placings. Even worse, their point scale is designed to emphasize being #1 way too much (20, 12, 10, 8, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1).

            “Valuable” sports:
            Football / Women’s VB
            Baseball / Softball
            M&W Hoops
            M&W Lacrosse
            M&W Soccer
            M&W Outdoor T&F – only one for which they actually use the NCAA Championship results

            I have a problem with every part of what they do. Winning a NC in lacrosse is worth 6 3rd places in “minor” sports like tennis, golf, swimming, cross-country, etc? The whole thing is designed to reward small athletic departments that focus just on these 12 sports and have elite teams in them. Being good isn’t valued at all. Neither is breadth.

            “A compromise is in order.”

            That’s a different discussion than saying the Cap1 is making progress. The DC and C1C measure two completely different things, and the C1C completely undermines the whole point of the DC. The whole point was “a program that honors institutions maintaining a broad-based program, achieving success in many sports, both men’s and women’s.” The C1C basically goes back to just saying who has the best major teams with a tiny amount of credit for other sports.

            By saying the C1C is going in the right direction, you’re really saying you don’t want to measure what the DC was designed to measure. That’s fine, but it’s not a flaw with the DC. There are ways the DC could be improved, but the C1C isn’t headed in that direction at all. It’s simply trying to change the metric.

          • bullet says:

            I’m with Brian. Bad weighting is worse than no weighting. Lacrosse is the worst and strangest example. Lacrosse and outdoor track & field get included in the heaviest weighting, but golf, tennis, swimming, indoor track & field and cross-country, all of which has vastly larger participation than lacrosse, don’t.

            ESPN is obviously trying to promote lacrosse with this measure.

          • ccrider55 says:

            Weighting, by definition is designed to create a hierarchy among the sports. It creates a club within the broader (NCAA D1) group. If we are honoring athletic department it should be as inclusive of offerings as possible. We already have people advocating dropping sports for popularity or financial reasons. Do we really want to wind up with only FB, BB, and a couple popular, max money making reality TV shows between seasons?

          • gfunk says:

            Brian,

            You’re stretching my statements here & forgetting that we actually agree more than disagree. Yes, we agree more than disagree : ).

            As you know, the Director’s Cup also weighs by where a team places in a national championship format, in fact they go much further, which I like, by awarding points to schools that place lower than 10th due to the standard 100 point scale (which I also like). ND M. Basketball got 25 points for placing-tying for 33rd in the recent NCAA tournament. That’s more points than Michigan got for winning the M. Swimming NC, Capital One.

            At this point, I’m merely giving Capital One credit for weighing some sports heavier than others, instead of being “politically correct” like the Director’s Cup. But as I have repeatedly stated, they’re going about it in a “half ass” process, or in some cases a truly unfair process (Lacrosse vs Swimming). So I’ll be as fair as possible here & argue that Capital One’s process is about 33% in the right direction (pseudo science).

            As someone else stated on here, and I wholeheartedly agree, across the board D1 participation should be a huge factor in the points system – a more logical starting point. Thus, Capital has a lot of explaining to do.

            Again, compromise should be the mission of Capital and Directors.

            Frank,

            I won’t agree that Lacrosse should have more weight than Swimming – not until there are at least 100 D1 teams – right now it looks like 60 + for men, & 90 + for women (Wiki, thus take with 2 grains of salt). And even at that point, they should merely be equivalents, Directors Cup or Capital One. And yes, BIG Lacrosse is exciting and they will have programs capable of benefitting from the ever skewed Capital format.

            I also agree, Hockey deserves a little more weight in the Capital format. I may be wrong here, but my guess is that D1 Hockey brings in more profit per school than Lacrosse. But I’m not going out on a limb here when I say that Lacrosse will likely never equal Hockey in states such as Mass, Mn and likely Mi. These are states where hockey players definitely play Lacrosse as a second sport. Mn now has over 60 high schools playing Lacrosse, but the vast majority of kids playing Hockey-Lacrosse, will choose Puck at the next level, if given the choice.

          • acaffrey says:

            I know you guys make fun of lacrosse, but they have posted some pretty impressive attendance figures: http://www.laxpower.com/common/NCAA-Attendance.php

          • Brian says:

            gfunk,

            “You’re stretching my statements here”

            I’m quoting you. How is that stretching? You said the C1C was going in the right direction versus the DC.

            “forgetting that we actually agree more than disagree.”

            Which is nice, but doesn’t change how much we disagree on the points where we do disagree. And those points are the ones we’re discussing (a discussion on where we agree would be pretty boring).

            “As you know, the Director’s Cup also weighs by where a team places in a national championship format, in fact they go much further, which I like, by awarding points to schools that place lower than 10th due to the standard 100 point scale (which I also like). ND M. Basketball got 25 points for placing-tying for 33rd in the recent NCAA tournament. That’s more points than Michigan got for winning the M. Swimming NC, Capital One.”

            Yes, I pointed that out. It’s a big advantage of the DC to me.

            “At this point, I’m merely giving Capital One credit for weighing some sports heavier than others, instead of being “politically correct” like the Director’s Cup.”

            This is one fundamental disagreement between us. I don’t see that as progress. The whole point of the DC is to measure the whole AD and treat each sport as equal. All you’re saying is that you don’t like the DC, which is fine. But you’re wrong to portray the C1C as an improvement on the DC. Instead, it is something completely different from the DC. The underlying principles are completely different.

            “As someone else stated on here, and I wholeheartedly agree, across the board D1 participation should be a huge factor in the points system – a more logical starting point.”

            It depends on what you’re trying to measure. There are about 340 MBB teams in D-I. So should MBB be three times as valuable FB? We all know most of the teams in both sports have no shot at a title. Should we count the number of “major” teams in each sport instead? Do you factor in the team size? It’s easier to find 1 or 2 star hoops players than it is to field an elite FB team. What about factoring in the number of scholarships?

            All of those are plausible issues, but they just muddy up the concept. The DC was designed on the principle of treating all sports equally. As soon as you start making adjustments, you are measuring something different. Every school has the choice to play the sports with fewer teams or regional interest. Why should it be held against those who do play? Every region has some regional sports they do well in.

            “Again, compromise should be the mission of Capital and Directors. ”

            Why? What is the advantage to either in compromise? They measure two different things.

          • gfunk says:

            Brian,

            Wow! I know I didn’t say some of these things you’re implying & extracting from my quotes, you’re not reifying, but distorting along personal interpretation. Moreover, I’m not even remotely interested in getting into a debate that deconstructs via misinterpretation. This is hardly the right space.

            I’ll give you some peace at this point, and please live with my stubborn ass opinion: sports like bowling, fencing and water polo don’t deserve the same weight as baseball, basketball or w. volleyball ( I wish I could use bold 50 pt here). Certain sports just don’t have enough representation, therefore not enough competition – simple statistics – award the sports with greater participation. Director’s Cup blows in this sense & enough disagreement with this system drove the creation of the imperfect Capital One system. I prefer to take the positives from each system & many of Capital One’s flaws, which you noted, I accept and agree with. I’m pretty sure I noted my concerns with Capital One. Ouch, I’ve plugged Capital One enough here.

          • BruceMcF says:

            I’d go the other way on the weightings, taking the 10 point sports and splitting them on total scholarship support with the most broadly contested “non-freestanding TV contract” sports raised from 10 to 20. But if Lacrosse’s ESPNU contracts makes it a 30 sport, then NCHC’s CBS Sports Network contract and having the whole conference alignment thrown into turmoil in pursuit of BTN exposure must surely make ice hockey a 30 sport too.

          • Brian says:

            gfunk,

            “Wow! I know I didn’t say some of these things you’re implying & extracting from my quotes,”

            I think you really did. You said this:

            “Honestly, the Captial One Cup is going in the right direction with their weighted system.”

            All I’ve done recently is point out that the C1C is not an improvement on the DC but rather something completely different. I don’t care which one you perfer, but you are wrong to conflate the two. They measure very different things. That’s why there’s no compromise between them to be had. One of the fundamental principles of the DC is to value all sports equally. That can’t be mixed with the C1C’s desire to weight sports differently.

            “sports like bowling, fencing and water polo don’t deserve the same weight as baseball, basketball or w. volleyball ( I wish I could use bold 50 pt here). Certain sports just don’t have enough representation, therefore not enough competition”

            Nobody is arguing that some sports have a lot more teams.

            http://www.ncaapublications.com/productdownloads/PR2013.pdf

            M BB – 340
            W BB – 338
            W XC – 336
            W VB – 323
            W Soccer – 317
            W Tennis – 317
            W OT&F – 317
            M XC – 310
            W IT&F – 308
            M Golf – 292
            Softball – 285
            Baseball – 293
            M OT&F – 277
            M Tennis – 259
            M IT&F – 255
            W Golf – 253
            M Soccer – 202
            W S&D – 193
            M S&D – 134
            Football – 121
            W Lax – 91
            Rowing – 87
            Field Hockey – 79
            M Lax – 61
            W Gym – 62
            Hockey – 58
            M Water Polo – 42
            W Bowling – 36
            W Hockey – 34
            W Water Polo – 34
            Fencing – 24
            M VB – 23
            M Gym – 16

            Is women’s cross-country 3 times as important as FB? I didn’t list all the sports, but FB is only #20 on that list. Is it really harder to win in WBB than FB? UConn has dominated lately and TN before that. There is more depth in FB despite having many fewer teams. How are you accounting for that?

            How many teams have any realistic chance at a NC in FB in the next 20 years? 20? 30? Is that a more fair way to judge than the total number of teams?

            How do you compare sports that play championships to FB which really doesn’t? Isn’t it harder to advance through a 16 team bracket than play a bowl game?

            “award the sports with greater participation.”

            By virtue of Title IX, that means women’s sports will vastly outweigh men’s sports due to all the FB scholarships.

            “Director’s Cup blows in this sense & enough disagreement with this system drove the creation of the imperfect Capital One system.”

            No, ESPN’s desire to promote certain schools drove the creation. There was no mass uprising of fans behind this.

          • Andy says:

            Brian, looking at that list of sports with number of participants, I think what I’d like to see is a director’s cup style ranking, but with a cutoff on which schools count. Maybe the threshold should be 100 participating schools. Or if that’s too harsh, then maybe just 50. I’m just not too fond of schools racking up points for water polo, bowling, and fencing when hardly any schools play those sports.

      • ccrider55 says:

        The schools ESPN wants to promote aren’t winning the Directors cup? No prob. Create one that fits their strengths.

        • gfunk says:

          I agree, Director’s Cup should be official and of course used by ESECACCPN. But, this year’s Capital One Cup is a tight race, good drama & BIG teams are well represented, both sexes.

          I forgot that if either UCLA or UNC win the baseball NC, they have a good shot of winning the Cup. But, if either face say Lville or IU in the finals, they can’t overtake either. IU clinches the Cup with a second place finish against UNC or UCLA. A UNC-Lville baseball finals would result in a Cup tie if UNC wins. Lville takes the Cup if they make it to the finals against UCLA.

          • gfunk says:

            Jesus, I am inadvertently dismissing the possibility of Lville or IU winning the baseball NC. Either is capable of winning it at this point. If either wins, they get the Cup as well.

  67. GreatLakeState says:

    Paging Gene Hackman. I think it’s time for Hoosiers 2.0

  68. Alan from Baton Rouge says:

    duff – it looks like you have a dilemma on your hands. Indiana v. Louisville. Who are you for?

    IU v. UL sounds like a Final Four matchup, rather than a game at the CWS. Maybe Bobby Knight and Denny Crum will throw out the first pitches.

    Louisville has had a season for the ages. BCS, MBB NC, WBB finalist, CWS, and a deal to join the ACC. Not a bad year for Jurich and company.

    Congrat top the IU fans and team. I think the Hoosiers are the first B1G team to make the CWS since the 84 Michigan team

  69. Transic says:

    All of this is pointing to a possibility for lacrosse at the university to become an official sport. The timetable for this to happen is probably about five years away, but with possibility of new donors coming forward to support the addition of the sport, the university may just pull the trigger sooner.
    It would be rather fitting that TCF Bank Stadium would be the new home for men’s and women’s lacrosse in the Big Ten and the NCAA for the Gophers. There is already the beautiful tribal plaza just outside the open-end of the stadium and to welcome the Native American sport to campus officially would have a perfect home.

    Pretty soon we could be seeing just as many short-poles and long-poles hanging out of sports bags on campus as the hockey sticks that call home just across the street. Let’s make it happen. Not next week or next year, but by the time that basketball practice facility final opens.

    You have to assume that the Big Ten Network will capitalize on the sport when it is launched. The Gophers should get in early on that gold mine.

    http://goldandgopher.com/2013/06/09/gopher-lacrosse-could-soon-be-a-d-i-sport/?utm_source=FanSided&utm_medium=Network&utm_campaign=Hot%2BTopics

    Speculation already starting on additions to B1G lacrosse.

    • Brian says:

      Actually, rumors of MN adding a team have been around for a little while. They predate adding UMD and RU. Here’s one from October.

      http://insidelacrosse.com/news/2012/10/12/mcla-notebook-minnesota-texas-state-msu-coaching-changes-and-offseason-news

    • Nemo says:

      @Transic

      “It would be rather fitting that TCF Bank Stadium would be the new home for men’s and women’s lacrosse in the Big Ten and the NCAA for the Gophers. There is already the beautiful tribal plaza just outside the open-end of the stadium and to welcome the Native American sport to campus officially would have a perfect home.”

      If this implies that the NCAA LAX championship would leave the East Coast, I can say it ain’t gonna happen. Too many premier teams on the Coast.

      • vp19 says:

        The Frozen Four has been held in Washington, Pittsburgh and, IIRC, even Los Angeles. So why not have a lacrosse final four in the Twin Cities?

        • Cliff says:

          The Frozen Four has had some poor ticket sales because they’ve over-reached in selecting sites, and setting ticket prices. There’s no reason whatsoever to have the NCAA Frozen Four in Anaheim or Tampa when there are zero schools within driving distance of the Tournament. There’s no momentum or appetite for college hockey in LA or Florida. They should keep it simple with the schedule. Boston and Minneapolis should each get it once every 3 years. Throw the third year up to a select few cities like Denver, Detroit, maybe Albany and Providence.

          Lacrosse has their own problems. Amongst other issues, they’ve been jacking up the price. I’ve heard $50 parking and $100 tickets, but there’s other problems, too, as listede here:

          http://insidelacrosse.com/news/2013/05/28/14-factors-lagging-final-four-attendance

          As much fun as it would be in the midwest, we are years away from that. The bottom line is that they need to keep the lacrosse finals in the East – Baltimore, Philly, Jersey. In fact, the Big Ten Finals should stay East, too. Plant a flag in Baltimore and have it there for the first 5 years like they are doing with the football and basketball championship games. After that, they can do a year at Rutgers or in DC or NYC or even Penn State.

      • Brian says:

        Nemo,

        “If this implies that the NCAA LAX championship would leave the East Coast, I can say it ain’t gonna happen. Too many premier teams on the Coast.”

        This year Indy became the first non-eastern site to host a lax regional. It went really well and there’s talk of eventually moving the finals around. It’s the price you pay for growing the sport. You can’t keep all the finals in the east if other areas are starting to be competitive. There’s too much home field advantage that way.

  70. bullet says:

    http://mrsec.com/2013/06/sec-schedule-czar-templeton-reveals-domino-effect-that-has-impacted-sec-slates/

    The move toward spreading conference games throughout the season to provide better matchups for TV instead of loading ooc up at the beginning as the Pac 12, Big 10 and Big 12 have traditionally done will create some scheduling complications. Schools do ooc independently, but now that’s dependent on the conference schedules. That will make good ooc matchups more difficult. As Mr. SEC mentions in his article, UGA and Missouri have 7 weeks where they can’t meet because of ooc scheduling before even considering any other factors.

    • Brian says:

      Gee, you’d think someone would have noted that issue before. Oh wait, I have. It’s one of the reasons I don’t favor early conference games.

  71. Alan from Baton Rouge says:

    Another national seed goes down. Miss State defeats #6 Virginia to advance to the CWS. #4 LSU is the only national seed to advance so far. Two spots have yet to be filled: #3 Oregon State v. K-State tonight, and #1 UNC v. South Carolina tomorrow afternoon.

    • ccrider55 says:

      While it looks like a seeding disaster at least 14 of the 16 teams were regional top seeds, and the other 2 were seconds.

      On the other hand, it does raise the concern about selecting a FB final four. As of now a selection to the CWS would have missed on at least 5 of 8.

      • ccrider55 says:

        On the third hand, with OrSU getting in we are only UNC winning from calling three of the top four. No pressure on you, UNC…

    • Brian says:

      Well, OrSU came back to advance. UNC/SC is scheduled for tomorrow to decide the last spot.

      Match-ups:

      NCSU vs UNC/SC
      #4 LSU vs UCLA

      #3 OrSU vs MS St
      IN vs UL

  72. Transic says:

    I would like to raise a philosophical question, if I may. Recently, there has been some sort of “crowd wisdom” in CFB fan circles that 14 is a number that is too awkward to schedule. The question I have is, barring any other factors, what about 14 that is so awkward to schedule? If 14 is such a bad number, why have three major conferences already have or will have reached that number a year from now? One could argue that 14 is a transitional number to an even number greater than that, but as we’ve seen with the recent news with realignment, the risk was always there that the adding conference could go no further than that at a certain point.

    To me, people who are positing this simply is trying to send another message but are being a bit politically correct about it. What they’re trying to say, IMO, is that some teams matter more than others, the latter of which are essentially “junior partners” to them. There is another factor that people overlook when arguing this position, and that is the practice of many states of interfering with the scheduling of some teams to ensure that intrastate rivalries aren’t interrupted. Classic case is South Carolina with Clemson/USCe. While people love seeing major intrastate rivalries, the problem with state legislatures interfering is that they tie the hands of the programs and reduce the flexibility to schedule games that might benefit the program in the long run. Finally, if a conference is willing to go above 12, they must take into consideration that adding two more means a commitment to have those two new members play the rest of the conference within a reasonably short time period. The SEC, apparently, thinks differently or they would not kept that short-sighted practice of having protected crossovers, essentially inadvertently (or intentionally, depending on your POV) creating “conferences within conferences”.

    The B1G, love it or hate it, is intending to have all teams play each other at least once within a short time period, starting in 2016. Already, though, there is complaining about some teams not playing certain teams sooner or not seeing certain opponents after a while.

    I think the upcoming CFP is going to create more of these tensions within the major conferences because of these same internal issues. Programs who depend greatly on football revenues are much more sensitive about these questions than before. Perhaps with 3 conferences getting to 14, there could well be opportunities for some interesting OOC games that may not have been possible before, if not for the lack of flexibility some programs have due to scheduling practices and political interference in some states.

    • Marc Shepherd says:

      I would like to raise a philosophical question, if I may. Recently, there has been some sort of “crowd wisdom” in CFB fan circles that 14 is a number that is too awkward to schedule. The question I have is, barring any other factors, what about 14 that is so awkward to schedule?

      I don’t understand it either. As a conference grows, it gets harder to ensure that all the members play each other with reasonable frequency. Teams that historically played each other annually may go many years without meeting.

      But I don’t understand what’ clumsy about 14 in particular, that would be solved by expanding to an even larger number. If the real complaint is that one would prefer to have stayed at 12 or 10, that ship has sailed.

      Anyhow, I like the Big Ten’s 14-team scheduling format better than I liked the 12-team scheduling format. The SEC has elected to allow teams in opposite divisions to go many years without playing one another, but it’s just that: elective. They didn’t have to do that.

      To me, people who are positing this simply is trying to send another message but are being a bit politically correct about it. What they’re trying to say, IMO, is that some teams matter more than others, the latter of which are essentially “junior partners” to them.

      It may be impolitic to say so, but isn’t it true? No one’s going to kick Minnesota out of the Big Ten, but is there any real doubt that Minnesota is less important to the league’s health and success than Ohio State? Or that Mississippi State is less important to the SEC than Alabama?

      There is another factor that people overlook when arguing this position, and that is the practice of many states of interfering with the scheduling of some teams to ensure that intrastate rivalries aren’t interrupted. Classic case is South Carolina with Clemson/USCe.

      Clemson and South Carolina have met 105 times since 1902. I’m guessing that neither team feels like they are “forced” by the legislature to play that game. I think the only rivalry like that is Iowa/Iowa State.

      Perhaps with 3 conferences getting to 14, there could well be opportunities for some interesting OOC games that may not have been possible before, if not for the lack of flexibility some programs have due to scheduling practices and political interference in some states.

      I think it’s the opposite. With conferences going to 9 conference games, there less ability to schedule OOC games and still maintain the 7 home games that most schools want.

    • Eric says:

      There’s no good scheduling solution at 14 only less bad ones. It was a reason to avoid 14 to begin with. That said, 16 (or more) isn’t going to improve things. At least the Big Ten was able to get a set-up where they play most the other division 45% of the time for most teams (outside of Indiana/Purdue).

    • Brian says:

      Transic,

      “I would like to raise a philosophical question, if I may.”

      How dare you bring up something that might require thought and reflection?

      “Recently, there has been some sort of “crowd wisdom” in CFB fan circles that 14 is a number that is too awkward to schedule. The question I have is, barring any other factors, what about 14 that is so awkward to schedule?”

      Short answer:

      Nothing.

      Long answer:

      Nothing about 14 is hard to schedule. It’s better than 12 in one way since everyone gets 3 home and 3 road division games. It’s worse than 12 because crossover rivalries get lost. I think the biggest issue with 14 is that the division splits often leave you needing locked crossover games to maintain important rivalries. This means very infrequent games against many conference mates.

      Some people think that 16 will allow for rotating pods which will be a panacea for all that is wrong with 14. Unfortunately, they’re wrong. First, pods work with 14 (2 pods of 3, 2 pods of 4). Second, it’s hard to keep all the important rivalries in pods so you have to lock some games. Third, more teams still means you spread the games out pretty thin. It’s just that by having fewer locked games on the schedule you can play the rest a little more frequently.

      Math:
      Divisions:

      12 teams, 8 games, 0 locked – 5 x 100%, 6 x 50%
      12 teams, 8 games, 1 locked – 6 x 100%, 5 x 40%

      14 teams, 8 games, 0 locked – 6 x 100%, 7 x 29%
      14 teams, 8 games, 1 locked – 7 x 100%, 6 x 14%

      16 teams, 8 games, 0 locked – 7 x 100%, 8 x 13%
      16 teams, 8 games, 1 locked – 8 x 100%, 7 x 0%

      12 teams, 9 games, 0 locked – 5 x 100%, 6 x 67%
      12 teams, 9 games, 1 locked – 6 x 100%, 5 x 50%

      14 teams, 9 games, 0 locked – 6 x 100%, 7 x 43%
      14 teams, 9 games, 1 locked – 7 x 100%, 6 x 33%

      16 teams, 9 games, 0 locked – 7 x 100%, 8 x 25%
      16 teams, 9 games, 1 locked – 8 x 100%, 7 x 14%

      You can see the big drop in game frequency that adding teams causes. This is especially problematic because many leagues want to stick with 8 games. Eight games makes for an equal home/road split in conference and allows more freedom in the OOC schedule, especially for teams with locked OOC rivalries. 12 teams playing 8 games play their opponents more often than 14 teams playing 9 games do, so there is still a loss of frequency even with the extra game.

      Pods:

      12 teams, 8 games, 0 locked – 2 x 100%, 9 x 67%

      12 teams, 8 games, 3 locked (1 in each pod) – 5 x 100%, 6 x 50%

      14 teams, 8 games, 0 locked – 2 x 100%, 8 x 50%, 3 x 67% or
      14 teams, 8 games, 0 locked – 3 x 100%, 6 x 50%, 4 x 50%

      14 teams, 9 games, 0 locked – 2 x 100%, 8 x 50%, 3 x 100% or
      14 teams, 9 games, 0 locked – 3 x 100%, 6 x 50%, 4 x 75%

      14 teams, 9 games, 3 locked – 5 x 100%, 6 x 50%, 2 x 50% or
      14 teams, 9 games, 3 locked – 6 x 100%, 4 x 50%, 3 x 33%

      16 teams, 8 games, 0 locked – 3 x 100%, 8 x 50%, 4 x 25% (anchor pods) or
      16 teams, 8 games, 0 locked – 3 x 100%, 12 x 42% (equal rotation)

      16 teams, 9 games, 0 locked – 3 x 100%, 12 x 50% (either way)

      16 teams, 9 games, 3 locked – 6 x 100%, 9 x 33% (equal rotation)

      Pods increase the minimum frequency with which you play teams by reducing the number of locked games. 16 teams allows for 4 pods of 4 which under equal rotation means you can stay at 8 games and be no worse off than you were at 12 teams in divisions if you can get the pods to keep the rivalries. Many can’t conceive of using pods in any way other than equal size groups rotating equally, but there are multiple variations on that theme. Thus, they don’t understand they could get the same benefit at 14 teams.

      • Brian says:

        As a brief follow-up, there is some awkwardness in many set ups. But 14 can exacerbate it because each division has 7 teams. When you get into scheduling teams 3 out of 7 years, it’s always a little clunky in the minds of fans.

        Sample:
        Look at OSU’s potential crossover schedule ignoring parity-based scheduling.
        PU – 33% = 1 out of 3 years
        Others – 44% = 4 out of 9 years

        1. PU, NE, WI
        2. IA, MN, NW
        3. IL, NE, WI
        4. PU, IA, MN
        5. NW, IL, NE
        6. WI, IA, MN
        7. PU, NW, IL
        8. NE, WI, IA
        9. MN, NW, IL

        It works just fine, clearly, but it sounds awkward and is a little awkward in terms of game spacing. People prefer nice even numbers, not rotations that take 18 years to balance out.

        12 teams makes for an easier rotation and so do 4 team pods.

      • Marc Shepherd says:

        Some people think that 16 will allow for rotating pods which will be a panacea for all that is wrong with 14. Unfortunately, they’re wrong. First, pods work with 14 (2 pods of 3, 2 pods of 4). Second, it’s hard to keep all the important rivalries in pods so you have to lock some games.

        Pods can fail by locking too little; they can also fail by locking too much.

        Consider the case where Florida State joins the Big Ten. (I am not suggesting this is likely in the near term, only giving an illustration.) The Seminoles have very little history with any current Big Ten member. Aside from future member Maryland (23 meetings), their next most frequent opponent in the league is Nebraska (8 meetings, but none since 1993).

        Most of the league would probably want equal access to Florida for recruiting. But in a pod scenario, three or four teams get disproportionate access, while everyone else sees them only 1/3rd or 1/2 the time.

        In a flat structure without divisions or pods, assuming rule changes to permit this and still play a championship game, everyone else in the league could see FSU equally often, or according to whatever frequency was desired, without the need to lock a fixed number of opponents.

        • Brian says:

          Marc Shepherd,

          Pods can fail by locking too little;

          Agreed, obviously.

          they can also fail by locking too much.

          I don’t really agree with this because pods lock fewer games than any other system that fits the current CCG rules. I do agree you could make bad pods and lock the wrong games, though.

          Consider the case where Florida State joins the Big Ten. (I am not suggesting this is likely in the near term, only giving an illustration.) The Seminoles have very little history with any current Big Ten member. Aside from future member Maryland (23 meetings), their next most frequent opponent in the league is Nebraska (8 meetings, but none since 1993).

          Most of the league would probably want equal access to Florida for recruiting. But in a pod scenario, three or four teams get disproportionate access, while everyone else sees them only 1/3rd or 1/2 the time.

          In a flat structure without divisions or pods, assuming rule changes to permit this and still play a championship game, everyone else in the league could see FSU equally often, or according to whatever frequency was desired, without the need to lock a fixed number of opponents.

          Emphasis mine.

          Well, that’s the rub, isn’t it? That’s a huge assumption to make since the rule hasn’t changed. If the rules changed, this whole discussion would be meaningless. Nobody would have divisions and there would be no talk about 14 being awkward. 14 is only a potential issue if divisions are required, and divisions would only be required if that rule doesn’t change.

      • Big Ten Fan says:

        @Brian

        This site presents an interesting scheduling scheme for: Divisions: 14 teams, 9 games, 0 locked – 6 x 100%, 4 x 50%, 3 x 33% (excluding Indiana / Purdue):

        http://www.cornnation.com/2013/5/8/4304780/big-ten-parity-scheduling-predictions-2016

        • Brian says:

          I saw it the last time you linked it. It’s one of several options.

          But parity-based scheduling in the B10 is a needless complication in the discussion at hand which is looking at 14 teams in general.

          • Big Ten Fan says:

            Unfortunately, if there is only one locked cross-over (Indiana and Purdue) then it does become complicated.

          • Brian says: