UMD, UVA, Duke, UNC, GT, and FSU, should leave the ACC and join Syracuse, BC, Miami, and Penn State, in a new 10 team conference called the Atlantic League, which would dominate the nation in every sport and every way, football, basketball, overall sports, rivalries, fun, academics, prestige, recruiting, fan base, TV, exposure, revenue, etc. This would double or triple everything including revenue per school, important since almost all schools currently lose money on athletics like Duke which is the most nationally televised sports program pro or college in the nation or world and funds the fewest scholarships in ACC yet loses $5 million every year on sports. Syracuse has 15 straight winning seasons and counting in football and biggest basketball stadium in world and best lacrosse national champs and NY location, Boston College is the only school in the country with a whole huge region New England all to itself and has great potential in all sports including hockey national champs and academics, Miami has 5 football national titles and baseball champs along with good basketball and recruiting and potential, Penn State has the biggest school and stadium and best football tradition in east and great overall sports, UMD is the ACC champ in football and NCAA champ in basketball with both of ACC's 2 biggest markets and 7 womens lacrosse titles in last 8 years, UVA is the top public school with great overall athletics and recruiting and potential and 4 recent mens soccer titles, Duke is the best basketball school in the country with best academics in ACC and great overall athletics, UNC has the top selling logo in country with great basketball and overall sports including 17 womens soccer titles, GT is the nation's best public tech school with 4 football national titles and key Atlanta location, and FSU is the best football and party school in the country. ACC and Big East are the 2 youngest and weakest and least stable BCS conferences, and Penn State is the eastern 11th school in a midwestern Big 10, a new conference should be created that is the best by far in the country instead of 2nd of 2 in southeast or worse.
The following paragraphs were written a couple years ago. I first wrote 4 years ago that the ACC should replace NCSU, Wake, and Clemson, with Syracuse, BC, Miami, and Penn State, and it's still the ideal solution because it not only makes the ACC the best in the nation in everything but also preserves the Big East in a new form while returning the Big 10 to the way it used to be. Syracuse, BC, Miami, are good in both football and basketball, while only Maryland can make that claim in the ACC now, and Penn State has the best football tradition in the east and best Sears Cup ranking for overall sports of any school in the ACC or Big East. ACC doesn't want to grow to 12 because of the loss of home and home basketball schedule and playing every other team in football. The new 10 team ACC with Syracuse, BC, Miami, Penn State, Maryland, UVA, Duke, UNC, GA Tech, and FSU, would be the best in the nation by far in every way while doubling or tripling revenue, fan base, etc., and no downsides. Even the potential split of ACC tourney tickets 10 ways instead of 9 could be fixed by holding ACC tourneys in 46000 seat domes like Georgia Dome in Atlanta, Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, and either of the new baseball domes in NYC, twice as many tickets for each school. As for conference champ game revenue, that's insignificant considering each of the 10 teams plays 11-13 games every year, but 12 team leagues shouldn't be allowed to play any more games than any other league's teams so should be banned from playing preseason kickoff classic type games which would only be played by 10 team or less leagues like new ACC, Big 10, Big East, or PAC 10. Actually, it would be better and easier for UMD, UVA, Duke, UNC, GT, and FSU, to leave ACC and join Syracuse, BC, Miami, and Penn State, in a new 10 team conference called the Atlantic League which would dominate the nation in every sport and every way right from the start and shouldn't have to be associated with the mediocre and unfair past history of the ACC.
Conferences are always evolving, constantly adding and dropping schools, even the ACC, the link below shows that every major and minor conference has had multiple changes over the years, lots of teams leave for better conferences and more money:
<a href="http://www.angelfire.com/sports/conferenceratings/history.html" target="_blank">http://www.angelfire.com/sports/conferenceratings/history.html</a>
Also, ACC and Big East have the worst traditions among the 6 major BCS conferences, and are the two weakest overall, that along with the gap between the haves and have nots in each conference and the worse than communist distribution agreement and archaic and reactionary voting system and unfair conference tourney location and unwieldy distribution with each concentrated in just part of the coast and ACC concentrated in just one small market, etc., make those 2 the most unstable conferences.
All conferences evolve, and schools are always looking to be in better leagues, preferably the best, but if they ever do get in the best like the Ivy League, they never leave and have no reason to. Atlantic League with Syracuse, BC, Penn State, UMD, UVA, Duke, UNC, GT, FSU, and Miami, would dominate the east with half the US population and more than half the media and money, and the first conference of the third millennium would be the best in every sport and every way forever.
The ACC was formed in 1953 when 7 schools left the Southern Conference, which itself was formed in 1921 by 14 members of the 30 member Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Association. The Southern Conference has had 41 different members and changed several times, like when 13 of 23 members left to form the SEC. Southern Conference used to have schools like Washington and Lee, University of the South, and Wake Forest, obviously that doesn't mean those schools are worthy of being in top conferences now.
<a href="http://wajl10.com/history/conf/southern.htm" target="_blank">http://wajl10.com/history/conf/southern.htm</a>
With increasing parity across the nation and the rise of sports as big business, conference success is determined by TV regions, fan bases, and recruiting territories, since Big 10, SEC, PAC 10, Big 12, and Big East, is better in each of those things, it is not surprising all of them have improved and will continue to improve while the ACC has fallen and can't last. ACC has most schools in and around one state and even including outliers only takes up one third of the strip of land along one coast, SEC by contrast has an entire quadrant of America, Big 10 TV region stretches from midwest to midatlantic and northeast, Big 12 dominates the heartland, PAC 10 the entire west, etc.
Not only is the ACC mediocre to terrible in everything, including basketball, football, and overall sports, according to SI, ESPN, Sporting News, USA Today, Sears, Sagarin, computers, Vitale, ACC media, national media, fans, and recruits, the league has never been close to balanced or fair, in any way. ACC splits TV and postseason revenue equally, so schools like Wake, Clemson, and NCSU, which are mediocre to horrendous in everything and have small fan bases and second or worse tier status among recruits and no TV draw, steal millions from powers like Duke which has an annual $5M athletic deficit despite being the most nationally televised program in the country, as well as FSU, UNC, UMD, UVA, GT, etc., each and every year, and this has caused lots of unrest and bad feelings. Either the ACC replaces programs that can't contribute or the programs that do have no choice but to leave.
The 4 NC schools suck in football and always have, Duke's share of the ACC title in 89 which was bogus because Duke lost to the cochamp UVA is the only one by any NC school in 20 years, so the out of state ACC schools have dominated for decades and will continue to. The reason for this is obvious, with 5 div.IA football programs in NC, there isn't enough talent to go around and every program suffers. Wake has the worst alltime win percentage of all 114 div.IA program, dead last even while in a lame conference, and must sell out academics and title IX just to have a team as perhaps the smallest div.IA school in the country, all NC programs would benefit if they dropped football. NCSU has the second worst football history in NC, and Clemson has 15 NCAA violations every year. By contrast, the 4 NC schools have combined to win 42 ACC basketball tourney titles, combined to only 6 for the other 5 ACC schools combined. The reason is that ACC tourneys in NC benefit local schools and their local fans, especially state schools like UNC and NCSU which have homecourt type advantages, in fact those two have won far more ACC titles than the entire rest of the ACC combined.
All of these problems can be fixed while making a new conference best in the country in every way instead of distant second of 2 in southeast. Syracuse, BC, and Miami, should switch places with NCSU, Wake, and Clemson, this would benefit all schools involved because they would be more competitive in their new conferences, athletically, academically, and in every other way. Penn State should join as the Atlantic League's 10th member instead of being 11th in the Big 10/11, again every school and conference benefits because B10 returns to sensible schedules playing everyone every year in football and all sports like they used to and back to 10 in midwest, while the biggest eastern school and athletic program joins the others to form the best and most profitable conference in the nation. Atlantic League basketball tourney would move between Continental Arena in NJ/NYC, MCI Center in DC, Charlotte Coliseum, and Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, with women and men playing same days in same places Wed to Sun, during spring break for all A League schools, in key locations to maximize fairness, attendance, revenue, and exposure for the premier sport and conference in the country.
Atlantic League with Syracuse, BC, Miami, Penn State, Maryland, UVA, Duke, UNC, GT, and FSU, would be much improved in every way with no downsides, be the best in the nation in every way, basketball, football, overall sports, rivalries, fun, academics, prestige, recruiting, fan base, TV, exposure, revenue, etc., doubling or tripling everything, and dominate the east with half the US population and recruits and more than half the media and money, as well as the rest of the nation.
42 of 48 ACC Tourneys have been in NC, and 42 of 48 have been won by NC schools, coincidence? ACC Tourney is unfair because it is in NC almost every year and UNC and NCSU often have 4-1, 5-1, and even 8-1 advantages in fan support as detailed below, and have combined to win far more ACC Tourneys than all 7 other ACC teams combined. The following paragraphs were written about 2 years ago but the point is even more valid today since the NC schools continue to dominate the ACC Tourney. A motivated UVA team which needed to win to make the NCAA just lost to an unmotivated NCSU team, which went on to beat top seed and eventual national champ UMD. UMD is now 0-10 in its recent ACC semifinals, almost always losing to a team from NC, while UNC is 11-0. UVA hasn't won any ACC tourney game in several years, and the other ACC schools outside NC have struggled in the NC ACC tourney as well. Instead of adding and dropping schools from ACC as proposed below, it would be easier and better for UMD, UVA, Duke, UNC, GT, and FSU to leave ACC and join Syracuse, BC, Miami, and Penn State, in a new 10 team conference called the Atlantic League, which would dominate the nation in every sport and every way right from the start and shouldn't have to be associated with the mediocre and unfair past history of the ACC.
Studies have shown that referees are affected by fans and homecourt type atmospheres. It is a well known fact to casinos and sports statisticians that home teams receive an advantage that is worth several points per game compared to playing on the road. So over the course of 3 or 4 games this makes it almost impossible for a visiting team to win the ACC tourney unless they have overwhelming advantages in talent over every other team.
Since the ACC tourney is in NC every year and state
schools in NC have by far the most local fans, UNC and
NCSU alone have won far more ACC tourney titles than
all 7 other ACC schools combined! And the 4 NC schools
have won 42 of 48 ACC tourneys, while the other 5 have
combined to win only 6, incredible.
Duke should have won more ACC tourney titles than they
have, much more. Duke dominated the ACC in 99 and
2000, with a 37-1 record, and obviously should have
easily won ACC tourney whether it was held in the Dean
Dome or anywhere else. In the ten years before 99,
Duke won 5 ACC regular season titles outright yet only
won 1 ACC tourney title, and it took the 92 dynasty
repeat national championship team to even do that.
Compare that to UNC which only has 1 ACC regular
season title but won 5 ACC tourney titles in the same
period of time, and has played in 11 of the last 13
ACC tourney final games. Alltime, Duke has 13 regular
season ACC titles but only 10 ACC tourney titles, NCSU
by contrast only has 4 regular season ACC titles but
the same number of ACC tourney titles, 10! UNC has 14
regular season ACC titles and 15 ACC tourney titles.
And of course recent history years is most relevant,
again, Duke has had one fifth as many ACC tourney
titles as they should have had, and UNC has had five
times as many as they should have had, that's 25 times
the success of Duke!
The reason is that local antiduke UNC and NCSU fans
buy tickets from fans of losing teams, so they have
overwhelming homecourt type crowd advantages,
especially in later rounds, and studies have shown not
only players but also refs are affected by crowds,
stats from ACC tourneys and every other sport prove
it. UNC/NCSU can have 8/9 of the fans for the ACC
title game, a homecourt type 8 to 1 fan advantage, and
even as much as 5/9, or 5 to 1 for the first round.
This is why out of state teams have done so poorly in
the ACC tourney, Maryland, UVA, Clemson, Georgia Tech,
and FSU, have combined to win only 6 ACC tourney
titles in ACC history! Maryland and FSU are the two
farthest ACC schools from Greensboro/Charlotte, FSU
has won only 2 meaningless first round ACC tourney
games in its entire history even though it has never
finished the regular season in last place and was
second twice, and despite its recent success,
especially against UNC, Maryland is 0-10 in its recent
ACC semifinals, often losing to UNC, which is 11-0.
Gary Williams said "You're playing in the state of
North Carolina and playing the University of North
Carolina. You have to overcome that."
Just looking at the ACC tourney games is even more
convincing than the ridiculous stats, like the 99 ACC
final between Duke and UNC. When UNC made the 11-1 run
in the first half to cut the Duke lead to 3, and the
14-0 run in the second half to cut it to 10, it
sounded exactly like the Dean Dome. One small section
behind half of one basket was filled with Duke fans.
It was clear to see the other sections all around the
arena full of tarheels standing and cheering during
Vitale: If they can get it under 10...
Mike Patrick: This place is full of tarheels, they'll
The 99 Duke team was unique, destroying all ACC
opponents to go 19-0 and winning by 20 to hand UNC its
worst loss ever at the Dead Dome, unfortunately it
takes that kind of team or the even better one in 92
for Duke to have a chance at an ACC tourney title, and
that needs to change. 5 ACC programs outside NC have
it even much worse.
Even in womens basketball, UNC has won 12 of its last
14 ACC tourney games, and UNC and Clemson have both
been finalists in each of the last 3 ACC tourneys in
Charlotte even though Duke has easily won the last 2
regular season titles! This is all just tragic and
unfair and needs to change.
ACC is 7th and falling in RPI rankings behind Big 10,
SEC, C-USA, Big 12, PAC 10, and Big East. ACC isn't
even in top 4 of mens or womens basketball
according to USA Today, and 4th and falling according
to Sporting News, Vitale won't even mention the ACC
when specifically asked if the ACC is a top
conference, talking instead about the Big 10, SEC, and
PAC 10. ACC football and overall sports has always
been a joke and is getting worse just like basketball
and everything else. Why? ACC has the smallest area,
TV region, fan base, recruiting territory, exposure,
etc., and these things become more and more important
in the modern era of college sports. Also, the system
keeps the same teams at the bottom of the conference
year after year, there is zero reason for recruits to
want to go to institutions that are mediocre to bad at
everything. The trend is obvious, ACC, already distant
second of 2 in southeast, has declined and will
continue to decline only more rapidly, while Big 10,
SEC, PAC 10, Big 12, Big East, etc., all improve. ACC
must evolve or die.
New Atlantic League with Syracuse, BC, Miami, Penn State,
Maryland, UVA, Duke, UNC, GT, and FSU, would be
the best in the nation in everything, basketball,
football, overall sports, rivalries, fun, academics,
prestige, recruiting, fan base, TV, exposure, revenue,
etc., doubling or tripling everything including money
per school, exposure, ranked teams, championships, and
Atlantic League tourney should move between Continental Arena in
NJ/NYC, MCI Center in DC, Charlotte Coliseum, and Tropicana
Field in St. Petersburg. A League tourney in NYC/NJ would
benefit Syracuse, BC, Penn State. MCI Center in DC
would benefit UMD, UVA, PSU. Charlotte Coliseum
benefits UNC, GT, and Duke. Tropicana Field St. Petersburg
benefits FSU, Miami. Actually, there are tons of
students, alums, retirees, etc., from each of the
10 A League schools in each of those 4 locations, and
they're each easily accessible and worth visiting.
Currently, ACC womens tourneys have little attendance,
revenue, or exposure, and it could be combined with
the mens tourney in A League or stand on its own depending
on demand and attendance. Women and men could play
same days in same locations Wed to Sun, 9-10 and 7-8 games
for both genders Wed, assuming favorites win throughout
1-9 and 2-7 games Thu, 3-6 and 4-5 on Fri, 1-4 and 2-3
on Sat, and both title games Sun. That would also ensure
that mens games happen in the evening for maximum
attendance and TV ratings. Actually, the 9-10 and 7-8
games could be played at the schools on the Tue before the
tourney, that way tourney tickets would only have to be
divided 8 ways while increasing attendance for the first 2
games, if that would be preferable. And since A League
womens basketball would be great and much improved, it should
be able to draw larger crowds than ACC tourney so it may want
to continue on its own.
A League tourney should be during spring break for all schools,
so everyone from students on spring break to retirees and local
and other alums and their families, can attend and
watch 18 great games over 5 days in great vacation
destinations. These changes maximize fairness,
attendance, interest in womens basketball, revenue,
and exposure in key areas, for the premier sport and
conference in the country.
<small>[ July 09, 2002, 09:03 AM: Message edited by: BlueDevil ]</small>