The Big Ten Conference office announced football division alignments set to begin in 2014 and nine-game conference schedules set to start in 2016. The changes were unanimously recommended by conference directors of athletics and supported by the Big Ten Council of Presidents/Chancellors.
“Big Ten directors of athletics concluded four months of study and deliberation with unanimous approval of a future football structure that preserved rivalries and created divisions based on their primary principle of East/West geography,” said Big Ten Commissioner James E. Delany. “The directors of athletics also relied on the results of a fan survey commissioned by BTN last December to arrive at their recommendation, which is consistent with the public sentiment expressed in the poll.”
The new division alignments will feature Indiana, Maryland, Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State, Penn State and Rutgers in the East Division and Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, Northwestern, Purdue and Wisconsin in the West Division. All schools in the East Division are in the eastern time zone and all schools in the West Division are in the central time zone with the exception of Purdue. Each school will play the other six schools in its division plus two teams from the other division in 2014 and 2015, which will serve as transitional years in which the schools will still be playing eight-game schedules. Beginning in 2016, each school will play three teams from the other division as part of its nine-game schedule. The cross-division games will include one protected matchup on an annual basis between Indiana and Purdue.
With the start of the nine-game conference schedule in 2016, teams from the East Division will host five conference home games during even-numbered years, while teams from the West Division will host five conference home games during odd-numbered years. As a result of the nine-game conference schedule and the Big Ten’s schedule rotation, every student-athlete will have the opportunity to play against every other team in the conference at least once during a four-year period. The Big Ten is returning to a nine-game conference schedule for all teams for the first time since the 1983 and 1984 seasons. from umterps.com
So the game is over and I have to endure the chants for 2 1/2 hours such as USA, USA at Alex, We won’t miss you, Don’t come back, ACC ACC, Not our rivals, and all the while Coach K is urging the crowd to continue. I hang around for the Coach K presser where the Carolina press guys lobbed softballs and then I asked very simply “Coach it seems like the fans are ecstatic to be rid of Maryland–how do you feel about it?” (The following audio should be started around the 3:40 mark to hear the question and answer). Memo-42 Obviously I must have touched a nerve. But I wonder how Coach K really feels. Maybe he is happy that the Terps will soon be gone.
At halftime I overheard two Carolina writers talking about what a bad decision it was to move to the BIG, and how Terrapin nation was solidly against the move. Needless to say, I told these guys they were clueless and how great the BIG was going to be for the Terps. They called me part of a lunatic fringe. I then brought up that Maryland was always the stepchild of the ACC and prime example was the ACC Tournament being in Greensboro 90% of the time. They called it a neutral court to which the laughter it brought to me almost made me sick.
As I left Cameron Indoor my only thought was Sayonara.
Turge was pretty content with the Terps effort and offensive performance today. No doubt Duke played excellently. Quinn Cook played as well as I have seen him play and the freshman Sulaimon was outstanding with 9-13 shooting for 25 points. Seth Curry definitely seemed to be hobbling at some points during the game.However the Terps hung with the Devils for most of the game until Mason Plumlee got hot and the rest was history.
Dez started off with 7 points and 5 bounds by the 4 minute break but quieted down afterwards. Charles Mitchell is back scoring 13 on 5-8 shooting. Alex had a quiet 8 point 10 rebound game. He was only able to get 6 shots in 34 minutes. But he did have 1 magnificent only early in the game only to be matched by a reverse dunk by Plumlee late in the game.
Seth Allen was suspended for the first half for what Turgeon referred to as a minor infraction. He was no factor in the game.
2 things were consistent with the Terps effort today: they won the rounding battle 43-34 and again were plaqued by 14 turnovers. Duke shot a high 52.% from the field including 11-22 from the 3 line.
Nick struggled a bit at the point having trouble with Quinn Cook’s pressure. PeShon just cannot get a break as a couple of his layup attempts teased the bucket but fell off the rim. It breaks my heart to see him struggling with his game because he is such a good kid.
Believe it or not there were lots of purple jerseys throughout the arena. Must have been Duke fans from Baltimore.
I am about to watch the game again so I will add to the blog tomorrow if I notice anything. The Terps (15-5 overall and 3-4 in the ACC) are now desperate for a win Tuesday night at FSU.
It all started with Maryland exiting for the Big Ten. Then the dominoes started to fall. For those of you who second guessed the decision, the events of the past few days have left no doubt upon the correctness of the move.
The Atlantic Coast Conference has filed a lawsuit against Maryland seeking full payment of the approximately $53 million exit fee for the school’s move to the Big Ten.
According to the 10-page lawsuit, the ACC said the school must pay $52,266,342, which is three times the league’s annual operating budget for the 2012-13 season.
The Associated Press obtained a copy of the lawsuit filed Monday in Guilford County Superior Court, home to the league headquarters in Greensboro.
The lawsuit also states that Maryland President Wallace D. Loh has “refused to provide assurance” that the school will pay the exit fee and “has made it clear that defendant Maryland does not intend to pay the amount.”
In a statement, Commissioner John Swofford says the ACC’s council of presidents unanimously decided “to file legal action to ensure enforcement of this obligation.”
“We continue to extend our best wishes to the University of Maryland; however, there is the expectation that Maryland will fulfill its exit fee obligation,” Swofford said.
Brian Ullmann, Maryland’s assistant vice president for marketing and communications, declined to comment in an email Tuesday afternoon.
The league argued that all ACC schools have “agreed to be bound” by votes taken by the league’s council of presidents, which approved the increase.
The league raised its exit fee to roughly $50 million in September after adding Notre Dame in all sports except football, though it’s still unclear exactly when the Fighting Irish will begin play in the ACC. The exit fee is three times the league’s annual operating budget so it could fluctuate from year to year.
Maryland was one of two schools that voted against the increased exit fee. Florida State also voted against the increase.
This is the topic that has taken over all conversation in Terrapin nation. The handwriting is on the wall–The Reward from the Big Ten is just too big not to accept in my opinion. I keep thinking about the sadness in losing 8 teams just a few months back. The athletic department has been crippled financially. This move must be made!!!
Supposed $90—$100 million in the pot for Maryland— WOW!!
Fiscal responsibilty alone would probably leave the Terps with no other choice then making the move.
Tremendous upgrade in football and quality of football opponents.
Tremendous revenue received from the Big Ten network. The ACC coverage palls in relation to Big 10 coverage
Immediate rivalry with Penn State
New regular opponents–Michigan State, IU, Michigan
Tremendous local following of the schools would easily enhance football attendance at Byrd
A breakaway from the malaise of playing the same opponents year after year. Note the Duke home & home setup will be gone after this year.
Tremendous Women’s Lacrosse rivalry with Northwestern
100 Million Dollars
Would not have to suffer through a Dukie V Broadcast of Maryland Duke
Would no longer have to accept the premise that the Greensboro Coliseum is a neutral venue
Money available to upgrade facilities and properly operate the athletic programs without having to continually ask the same great alumni (Plank, Bishotti, Gossett,etc.) to bail the program out
Men’s lacrosse would lose Super Conference in the ACC–But let’s be real–Who is our real Lacrosse Rival–for over 100 years it has Been Johns Hopkins–And perhaps now we see the growth of Loyola into a new rival
Duke and Carolina games for Men and Women would be gone—But is Duke truly our rival—In the 70’s it was South carolina–then NC State, then North Carolina and maybe for a few years Duke—time to move on
The ACC has always treated Maryland like a stepchild it had to occasionally pacify but no more
My buddy Roman called me up on the way home from the FSU game and asked a simple question–Who was the backup to Tom Matte when #41 ws thrust into the starting QB role for the Colts? I had no answer . Unitas and then Cuozzo were knocked out and in came Matte (after Ed Brown was allowed to play the final game against the Rams).
Randy Edsall could not go to the waiver wires and pick up a QB. There were no moves left to be made. I DON”T CARE WHAT ANYONE THINKS< IF CJ BROWN WOULD HAVE BEEN THE QB THIS TEAM WOULD HAVE WON 7 OR 8 GAMES. The Terps were 4-2 with Perry Hills, a Freshman QB who had been on campus for 3 weeks when he started game 1. Enough said!
I was glad to see Kevin Dorsey get a couple of TD catches and enjoyed watching Kenny Tate have his best game of the year. As for the game 41-14 says it all. I will not miss playing FSU when we leave the ACC.
Thank you Seniors for sticking it out with Randy. I only wish every one of you the best of luck in life. Joe Vellano, I anxiously await watching you on Sundays next year.
For now, it is the strangest expansion news since this latest go-round started in December 2009.
In five years it might remind us that Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany remains the smartest man in any room.
Maryland and Rutgers to the Big Ten? Really? The ACC has a $50 million exit fee. ACC commissioner John Swofford – that sly old fox – was thought to have hit the grand slam when he landed Notre Dame in everything but football. Swofford also said his league was set at 14 when it added the Irish.
Apparently, none of that means much of anything. Exit fees are only worth the paper they are printed on. This reported move obviously means the Big Ten has better lawyers who can spot bigger loopholes. It also means there is a long-term strategy, not one that will be immediately evident if the move is announced as soon as Monday.
This has to be about the Big Ten Network, Delany’s baby. BTN is currently throwing off $100 million in profits for 12 teams each year. At best Maryland and Rutgers raise that total just a little bit. At worst, they bring “pro rata” which means equal value.If it happens, Delany may eventually have hit hit the walk-off of all walk-offs perhaps with his alma mater in his hip pocket. And, remember, that alma mater includes one Dean Smith making Delany one of his captains in 1970.
But you don’t expand to College Park, Maryland and Piscataway, New Jersey to bring equal value to your conference and its mega-rich network. If the Big Ten expands and the ACC is de-stabilized even a little, it barely impacts main rightsholder ESPN. All the Worldwide Leader would be doing is shuffling money around.
Unless there is that larger strategy at work here. Unless the age of superconferences really is upon us and the Big Ten is going to lead the way. Why stop at 14, when it can go 16 when it gets a foothold on the East Coast? Does this move eventually pry North Carolina loose?
Suddenly, we’re talking some serious BTN dollars with the conference in states with at least 35 percent of the U.S. population. The per-subscriber rate could go from 10 cents – that was the rate outside the Big Ten footprint when BTN launched in 2007 – to maybe 50 cents. Maybe a dollar. Then it goes higher because Maryland basketball fans realize that’s the only way they can see some of the Terrapins games.
And if Jim Delany gets his alma mater, we’re talking realignment Armageddon. Then what is an ACC worth to Notre Dame without North Carolina and Maryland?
(If you don’t think Carolina could split up with Duke, well, that little arrangement is already at work in the ACC with Notre Dame. Carolina could be football-only in the Big Ten and keep the basketball rivalry.)
What Saturday’s news told me is that the Big East is done, kaput. If Rutgers leaves, then UConn will head to the ACC. That’s right in the middle of Big East TV negotiations that will decide how close the league to Conference USA in terms of TV worth. The football? It better hope Boise keeps winning because the Broncos are the lynchpin of the reconstituted league.
And if this is truly the age of the superconference, then the Big East won’t be the only conference eaten alive. If Delany pulls this off, then the repercussions are potentially huge. Notre Dame suddenly has an ACC scheduling agreement that is diminished. Does the Big 12 have to think of going beyond 10?
The ACC rights fees have been renegotiated twice in the last 18 months. They still lag significantly behind the Big Ten. And in four short years the Big Ten is going to cash in big in four years when it renegotiates its television deal. It will conceivably zoom past the SEC and Pac-12.
Because the Big Ten is slotted last among all the conferences, the deal is likely to be the richest in history. But, again, 12 schools splitting that money makes them richer than a 14-team split.
Clearly, this isn’t about football. It seldom is in conference realignment. The Big Ten has enough perception problems in football. Maryland and Rutgers aren’t going to improve its image. It’s about new viewers for the Big Ten Network. I talked to a Big Ten AD less than two years who told me the league presidents were impressed with Georgia Tech and Maryland before settling on Nebraska.
Both are AAU schools. Neither play particularly great football. But each would add a new Big Ten footprint. Sub in New Jersey for Georgia and you see the strategy hasn’t changed.
I talked to three industry sources who couldn’t figure out how the move made sense. One high-ranking official said it was “odd” because the BCS payout to the five major conferences (not including the Big East) is the same. While discussions are ongoing in the new playoff era, the revenue for the major conferences is expected to be distributed evenly as well. The four teams (and thus conferences) in the playoff area expected to receive a proportionally larger share.
Delany’s is a long-term play, one that could outlast the 64-year old as commissioner. Think of a Big Ten that stretches from Nebraska through the Rust Belt, the Northeast and down the East Coast. Think of other conferences being swallowed up as college athletics continues to rearrange the furniture.
Think of the richest conference network in existence getting richer. The Big Ten started the realignment merry-go-round in December 2009 when it sent out a short memo it was considering expansion. With Saturday’s news, it seems that the conference is not going to let realignment end.