How the ACC became college football’s best conference via Tampa Bay Times.

Recently there was an article from the Tampa Bay Times by Matt Baker titled “How the ACC became college football’s best conference.”  This was a particularly interesting article because the author goes into the recruiting aspect, the financial commitment, and coaching hires ACC programs made a few years ago to improve their football.

The ACC also began making greater financial investments. In 2003, the league’s current 14 teams averaged $9.8 million in football expenses, according to figures submitted to the U.S. Department of Education. That was last among Power Five conferences.

By 2015, the conference had passed the Big 12 and Pac-12 and was spending almost $25 million per team.

And with upgraded talent and infrastructure, the ACC was finally ready to take advantage of it last year.

The ACC was the only conference with a winning record against other Power Five teams, including a 10-4 mark against the SEC and 6-2 against the Big Ten. It wasn’t just FSU beating Ole Miss, Florida and Michigan, or Clemson topping Auburn, Ohio State and Alabama. Pitt knocked off Big Ten champion Penn State. Miami earned a 17-point bowl win over West Virginia. Georgia Tech beat three SEC teams by a combined 47 points.

It’s one thing getting to the top of mountain, it’s another staying there. As I’ve said before, I don’t think you’ll ever see a stretch of college football dominance ala the SEC from 2005-2012, but the ACC is well positioned to be in the conversation of one of the premier football conferences for years to come.

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