Conference Shuffle 2011: Where is BC's best home?
With Texas and Texas A&M fighting over the new Longhorn Network, it looks like another conference reshuffle might happen soon. Add in the Pac 12's bold new TV plan and it makes sense for the SEC, Big Ten and Pac 12 to all expand to 16 teams. The question then becomes which 16 and how can BC position itself for the future. I foresee three scenarios. None are great, but let me know what you think.
1. Current ACC + 4 new members
This is my ideal setup. It keeps BC with enough like-minded schools. We wouldn't be overwhelmed by the competition and would probably result in a new ACC TV network. The downside is we would probably have to add schools we don't care for like UConn, Rutgers or West Virginia. But this future would provide the most continuity, stability and keep us where we belong academically and geographically.
2. BC joins the Big Ten
This might be the most far fetched, but I think it is much more realistic than people suspect. As I've said before the Big Ten would want TV markets, respectable sports and academics. BC provides all three. We would also add a boost to the fledgling Big Ten Hockey Conference. This would take a lot of political maneuvering and we would really have to sell the Big Ten on why BC makes more sense than some of their other candidates. But if the Big Ten added Notre Dame, Rutgers and Syracuse, BC would fit in well. That combination would also assure the Big Ten of the northeast TV markets.
3. BC joins the ACC and Big East leftovers.
This is my fear. In this scenario a few of the ACC's top football programs defect to the SEC and we are left to backfill with the Big East. Although if these dominoes fall, I think the Big East backfill could be teams like USF and UConn as opposed to Pitt or even a Rutgers. It would probably be a good basketball conference, but I don't think it would get much respect from the football media or our fanbase.
There are plenty of ifs in all of this. My focus is always on what is best for BC. Ultimately, I think the status quo. Unfortunately the status quo never lasts in college sports. We need a conference where we can compete, keep up with top revenue producers and stay relevant. I think aligning ourselves with Big Ten is the best bet. But will they want us?