Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Notre Dame to ACC as non-football member

ESPN reported that Notre Dame will join the ACC as a non-football member. Rumblings started this morning but there has been plenty of speculation for months. According to ESPN the Irish will commit to playing five ACC teams annually in football. Given that Pitt and BC are regular opponents, adding three more ACC teams is not much of a hardship on Notre Dame. I assume the deal also allows Notre Dame to keep its NBC deal for football.

The good news
In the changing landscape of college football this gives the ACC one of the few remaining chess pieces. I assume there will be some sort of bowl partnership in the relationship. While the politics of the new playoff are still to be determined, you would have to imagine Notre Dame's vote and interests will now be more closely aligned with the ACC. Adding the Irish for also is probably enough of a trigger to reopen our ESPN deal again to get some more money.

The bad news
It is partial membership with no rumored transition date to full membership. We only need to look back to our Big East days to know that the Irish will do everything in their power to keep their football independence. The other issue is this probably means the ACC will add a 16th team to balance things out. That means were are probably back in a conference with Rutgers or UConn again.


Walsh601 said...

You forgot the most important part: Exit fees increased to $50 million. THis completly stabilizes the conference.

Soxx22 said...

I think that after a few years of realizing that they aren't going to make the playoff as an independent they will become a fulltime member. I think they will figure out that being a fulltime member of the ACC will be an easier route to a national title. It could mean losing the USC game and/or Michigan game but they need to figure out that winning a national title is more important than keeping up those traditions. they might lose a little bit of recruiting edge in Cal but will increase it in the Southeast.

mod34b said...

WOW!! -- that is a shocker... and kept so secret with no leaks.. amazing..

I guess my initial reaction is that I like the move... but just sort of. Not really a "jump up and down" like it, more of an "Ok, that seems ok."

Kind of how I feel about ND in general. I like them, but really only sort of and often not at all.

It does sound like a prelude to full admission for ND down the road.

and adding ND is, obviously, more alligned with BC's long term interests than just about any other available choice for entry into the ACC.

If the ACC does -- eventually -- go for #16 (no real rush now is there?), I hope it is NOT NOT NOT UCONN.

Big Jack Krack said...

If we go to 16, I think the league should take Rutgers for the NYC market, etc.

My opinion doesn't count, of course.

mod34b said...

This actually significantly weakens BC's football relationship with ND.

According to Eric Hansen
@hansenNDInsider: "Each ACC school is guaranteed to play Notre Dame in football once out of every three years"

5 games per year for 3 years is 15 games. Other than ND there are 14 ACC football teams. So if every team plays them once, that means that 13 games every three years are not against BC; 1 game every threee years is against BC and there is one game over 3 years remaining...

Maximum is BC plays ND 2/3 years. But I do not see that BC would be ND's preferred choice for the last game.

Not sure I am liking this part..

mod34b said...

it also may mean ONE ND game at Alumni EVERY SIX YEARS.

ONE trip to SOUTH BEND every six years.

Knucklehead said...

I do not agree with the part about the ACC expanding beyond ND. Why would they add another program that has football if ND is not part of the conference for football. Adding an additional school would make football un-even. We all agree ND is not going to join for football in the foreseeable future. Adding another program now only balances out the OTHER sports.

I think we avoid UCONN, Rutgers or even UMASS until ND joins for football.

Of those three I would take UMASS in a heartbeat.

Knucklehead said...

The ACC has 12 teams without ND by the way.

PercDM said...
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PercDM said...

UConn or Rutgers to the ACC doesn't make any sense. Fifteen teams spread over two divisions with five out of conference games against ND. It doesn't work out. Also, UConn and Rutgers add very little competitively or in television markets.

The answer is adding Georgetown. They don't play football, but they are still a basketball power with a huge draw. Adding Georgetown would re-establish the ACC has the best baksetball conference, and it wouldn't create ridiculous scenarios in football scheduling.

prisbyal said...

If you add Georgetown it gives ND one more reason to never join as a full member.

You have to wait it out.

strongarm95 said...

Adding a basketball only school is silly at this point - don't we remember what happened to the Big East!! Any new addition will also need to play football.

Also, I wish people would stop saying Rutgers will bring the NY market. It will not. I grew up in NYC and not once in my life did I ever think/hear/care about Rutgers. The only thing that Rutgers will bring is the NJ market.

mod34b said...

knuckle -- you do realize that once ND joins the ACC, taht Pitt and Syracuse will be ACC members? You knew that, right?

12 + 2 = 14.

5 x 3 = 15

15 - 14 = 1 (extra ND games for ACC teams every three years)

are we square?

And your suggestion that UMASS joins the ACC (ha! ha! ha!) makes me think -- once again - that you are not a BC guy, but a Minuteman.

Big Jack Krack said...

strongarm95 - I hear what you're saying and understand the history of Rutgers in terms of NYC.

I think, however, IF the ACC brings anyone else in, it should be the NYC/NJ area rather than Hartford, CT.

This would give the ACC a chance to build a market there. While the attendance for Syracuse - USC at the Meadowlands was pathetic - other games might not be.

It's up to the league to figure out a way to exploit that market.

I personally do not care if the ACC stands pat now.

PercDM said...

Waiting for ND to join as a full member is fool's good. The Big Ten was holding out for ND forever, and then they moved on and grabbed Nebraska. I wouldn't wait around for ND football.

I am not against the ACC staying at 15 members. Basketball scheduling is nearly as awkward with 15 as it is with 16. However, I do think basketball works better with 16, especially when you are protecting certain rivalries.

Adding ND and another school in everything but football will not make the ACC like the Big East. There are still 12 all-in teams. The Big East has always had a substantial number of teams on either side of the football playing divide (at least since the Big East started playing football).

mod34b said...

I note with amusement, the ATLANTIC COAST conference now has a member (ND) who resides 700 miles from the ATLANTIC COAST.

(BC has been ripping on the BE for having many no "east" schools for years)

and so it goes... ,. , , ,

PercDM said...

Earlier, I said 12 when I meant 14 all-in teams. Those are the schools that will drive the ACC.

Knucklehead said...

Mod 34b,
Thank you for the reminder.

Pitt and Syracuse are not in the ACC right now. But including them does not change my argument.

Anyway, adding ND makes 15 schools in the non-football sports and 14 in football. ND is not joining for football, correct?

If you were to add a school in addition to ND then there would be 16 in the non-football sports and 15 in football.

Then football would out of balance.

I do not think they want football out of balance. It is too high profile and to few games in comparision to hoops or baseball etc.

Knucklehead said...
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NEDofSavinHill said...

What does this mean? If the ACC has triggered a clause requiring a higher payout because it added a team this could be beneficial to everyone. However if the ACC is stuck at $17 mil per year when the Big 12 with their limited footprint just got $20 mil then this is a minor story. Once ND joined HE any possible Big 10 relationship was over. With the BE probably excluded from the big 5 football conferences ND wanted to bolt. Is the BE tv package now considerably reduced? Has ESPN ochestrated this entire drama?

Knucklehead said...

In regards to UMASS. They were very good under Whipple, have the potential to be good again, play in an NFL stadium and are the state university in a nuts-o sports State.

I do not want to give UCONN or Rutgers the time of day. I don't see any other reasonable options. I mean Villanova would have to go D-1 in football, USF is sub-par in terms of academics and clientel and ECU has the same issues for me any way as USF.

UMASS makes the most sense.

El Suape said...

Out of the three, Rutgers makes the most sense. Uconn don't bring as much when it comes down to the market. Umass doesn't have a shot. The turnout at that indiana game was pathetic...and attendance is only going to decrease. The ACC isn't going to invite a MAC team that attracts maybe 10,000 fans per game. On top of that their team is awful and the immediate future doesn't look promising at all. I personally think the move is going to end up being a disaster (unless the big east has to scramble for teams again and extends an offer to them..definitely a possibility).

Quite frankly I don't like any of them and there are few teams I would want. A year ago, I would have said Penn St should be the ACC's main target to pair with ND for #'s 15 and 16. Maybe NW though? Pair with ND and win the Chicago market. NW as an institution fits with the ACC more than the B10. They've got a good deal there though.

chicagofire1871 said...

I have to address two points:

1. Rutgers does not deliver the NYC market. Actually according to the NY Times, Notre Dane achieves this! The. UCONN and Rutgers to ACC discussion makes no sense on this point.

2. The NU AD has admitted the they are the 10th most popular team in Chicago. Inviting NU achieves nothing in terms of market penetration. Notre Dame though delivers much of Chicago nicely.

El Suape said...

I know NW isn't much of a market maker as an athletic program...but if the ACC wants to attract ND for football it has to bring in a 16th team. When I look at the landscape of D1 college football, there are essentially zero good options for the ACC on the east coast (big east included). NW could be a team that would prevent ND from being alienated in the midwest.

chicagofire1871 said...

I'm with others in thinking that there is no need to go higher until (IF) ND is a full member. I'm still sore that Swofford even let them in without football. Seems to be repeating a classic BE mistake.

mod34b said...

Tweeted: "ND AD Swarbrick: Boston College will no longer play ND every year in football. Will be part of the #ACC rotation "

Soxx22 said...

would there be any benefit to adding Navy once ND is a full member? they've been solid recently in football - don't bring a lot to the table for basketball but do we really need that? Navy has a pretty strong following for obvious reasons and fits well academically

EL MIZ said...

the stuff about ND getting played every yr is a tad overblown -- we are going to stick to the schedule that WAS in place already, home in 2015 and 2019 and in south bend 2017 and 2018.

that leaves the next 2 years out, then 4 in 5 years. i would be SHOCKED if by the end of that contract, ND wasn't a full-time football member. look, with the playoffs, your path to a national championship is through the playoff system, not through an independent playing a stacked schedule and going undefeated into the BCS Championship "bowl". not only that but i would think that eventually the money from these conference deals (and ACC football+basketball should be huge, even w/o ND as football) will lead to it being close to or as attractive as it is to be an independent.

facts to back it up: ND gets $15M per season from NBC. (

SEC just signed one for $25M per season, Big 12 $20M, and ACC $17 M

ND football will be in the ACC sometime this decade. and that is great for the ACC -- 4 teams that have all been #1 and in the championship sometime in last 20 years in the U, FSU, va tech, and ND.

EL MIZ said...

PS -- i think you cap football at 15. why add another team if it won't increase the TV money? at some point you've gotta hit the right # and i think this group of 15 is perfect. have an "old big east" division with BC, ND, Va Tech, Pitt, Cuse, the U. i'd add either virginia (in state rivalry with Va Tech or maryland (most northern? i dont know they seem like the right fit).

for basketball, i am more than open to poaching the 3 basketball powers left from the big east as HOOPS ONLY members -- georgetown, st johns, and villanova. add those 3 and have an 18 team superconference with 2 9-team divisions. that would be an absolutely crazy collection of basketball teams, and ACC could have their own bizarro NYC conference tournament at Barclays out in BK.

that hoops/football package would be massive. a network looking to establish a college sports presence (FOX) or looking to hold onto one (NBC) would be big time bidders. use ESPN as leverage and get a massive deal (20+ M for bball/football schools per year, give the basketball only a smaller cut)

Bravesbill said...

Add at least 1 basketball only school (I wouldn't be opposed to El MIZ's suggestion to adding the last 3 b-ball remaining schools in the Big East) to make an even number of basketball teams. By doing that, the ACC can hold out and wait for ND football to join, if it ever does. If it does join, the ACC could always add a football only school (like Navy, Army, etc.) to even out the football teams. Makes much more sense that way.

Deacon Drake said...

UI think everyone is forgetting that ND has 7 other non-ACC schedule opportunities; some with be reservered for their traditional Midwest rivalries (Purdue, Michigan, MSU), plus USC and an academy...

In addition to its one gauranteed ACC game every three years, BC should try to get one of those other slots, at least once every three years. I think seeing ND 2 out of 3 years is pretty solid and may add to the rivalry some...

Deacon Drake said...
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Deacon Drake said...
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BCDisco said...

Overall, it's a good move. For the ACC, it needed to be done. If this is the best deal the ACC could get, then so be it. However, what I don't like about it is the ND-within-one-win rule. Just like with the old BE, an 8-4 ND team could take a bowl game away from a 9-3 BC team.