My Thoughts On a Potential ACC Realignment

Good afternoon, Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) football fans – we’re only 58 days away from ACC and season opener at Lane Stadium in Blacksburg, VA – the Virginia Tech Hokies take on the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets in a nationally televised game on Labor Day (on ESPN).  Can’t wait for college football to start!!

Since this is the summer, it’s a slow time for college football – unless you’re paying attention to those Big 12 expansion rumors – which I am not – because no one believes that Clemson or Florida State are going to the Big 12 and are looking forward to those road trips to Ames, IA.

What I would like to turn the conversation to is a proposal from Chadd Scott who writes College Football’s Most Dangerous Blog over at ChuckOliver.net.  I have immense respect for Chadd’s work – we listed him in our Twitter 200 over at SCACCHoops.  However, having said that, I disagree with Chadd’s ACC realignment proposal 🙂

There are some advantages and disadvantages to Chadd’s proposal… I was going to respond via Twitter, but I figured this was going to be far more than 140 characters and I did not want to blow up everyone’s timeline with multiple tweets.

There are some advantages for an ACC Coastal (I’m calling it the Coastal because no one from Virginia will be in a division called North… no one) that Chadd has referred to:  Speaking from the Virginia Tech perspective, he is correct that if Boston College, Maryland, Miami, Pittsburgh, Syracuse, Virginia, and Virginia Tech are together, there would be a good chance to establish regional rivalries. Fans would travel, tickets would sell, and athletic directors are happy when revenue streams are produced. Outside of Boston College and Miami, this is a bus league.

There are some disadvantages: Basically, all of the Big East schools are being lumped together (the current and former Big East schools… you’re talking five former and current Big East Schools all together). Virginia Tech will not buy into this type of realignment… at all. In Chadd’s proposal, the ACC Atlantic (Chadd’s South Division) would have the old style ACC members, including Clemson, Duke, Georgia Tech, Florida State, North Carolina, North Carolina State, and Wake Forest all together… this is clearly the stronger division, overall, of the two (basically, most of the schools that place a value on strong football are placed together – Clemson, Georgia Tech, Florida State, and NCSU on one side of the ACC?  No thanks.). Some FSU fans (and maybe other Atlantic Division fans) would most likely claim that the Hokies would have a non-stop path to the ACC Championship Game each year.

Virginia Tech would also not want to be separated from the Carolina schools or Georgia Tech in its current Coastal Division… right now, the Coastal and the Atlantic Divisions are very strong… there is strong competition in both divisions. Virginia Tech agrees with the current makeup of the divisions (including where Pittsburgh and Syracuse will be placed).

I believe Virginia Tech would consider applying to the SEC if Chadd’s divisional realignment proposal were ever implemented (I think that expansion would be in the fast track – if Chadd’s proposal were reality, I think Virginia Tech would have to leave the ACC). At the least, Virginia Tech would use its football leverage to ensure the divisions do not change on a scale like this. Other than the regional rivalries, I see no benefits to Virginia Tech in Chadd’s realignment proposal (and I respect Chadd a lot, as I’ve said above).  I’m glad the ACC decided to keep is current divisions – and just add the new members, Syracuse and Pittsburgh, to the existing divisions.

Your thoughts?  Have a good weekend.

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