Is more Big Ten expansion imminent?

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As the ACC and Big 12 attempt to jointly circle their wagons in an effort to stave off other conferences from picking off their members, it looks like the talk of “aliiances” between the two conferences has sparked rumors once again that Jim Delany and the Big Ten might make a strike.

It’s now rumored that Delany has reached out to schools such as Georgia Tech, Virginia and North Carolina.

The fascinating part of this is the domino effect. Many speculate that if the ACC loses Georgia Tech, it could be a death blow to the ACC as a football conference.

Moreover, the question becomes what other conferences might do in response to the Big Ten jumping to 16 teams. Would the Big 12 then move quickly to go for teams like Florida State and Clemson?

As we’ve discussed before, the pair of UNC & Duke is quite interesting. It’s hard to imagine the two programs would split up, so either the Big Ten grabs them both, the SEC grabs them both, or they remain in what is left of the ACC – likely a revamped conference focused on basketball.

If the ACC implodes as a result of the Big Ten and Big 12 raiding its members, the SEC will have its pick from some of the members. I could see the SEC trying to add UNC & Duke, but it’s questionable whether or not they would go for it. If not, you could see NC State and maybe Virginia Tech join the conference.

Does anyone think that the conference realignment game will be idle for long?



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  • I think FSU and Clempson would fit the best in the SEC, but we and UF wouldn’t stand for our rivals joining the conference. Also, it would seem that Slive would want to expand the television market to states not already included in the SEC (hence the Mizzou pickup). I think a NC and VA school are the most likely to enter the SEC. I think that because of that, Clempson and FSU will end up in the Big 12 to escape the siking ship that is the ACC.

    • I would rather see Hell freeze over than Clempson ever joining the SEC. I’m sure UF fans feel the same about their rivals.

    • As a former student at both Florida and South Carolina, I would not mind having FSU and Clemson in the SEC. They already play one another in rival games, so why not make them intra-conference rivals? In the bigger picture, I would rather see the SEC expand to another state in order to bring more television viewers into the SEC footprint.

  • I’m warming up to the fact that UNC and Duke are first priority. Sure, everyone would like to have the best 16 football teams in the country, but that’s not happening, nor will Clemson or FSU join the conference. Duke and UNC would be killer for a lowly basketball conference right now, even though we all the SEC is all about football. If Ga Tech leaves, the ACC will crumble, and it will be every man for himself. Super conferences are just about five years away.

  • Slive might make a move for UNC/Duke if that’s the only way to get UNC. NC and the state’s TV sets are the main prize. Academics and AAU membership is second (and there’s a lot more potential money for the universities from academic research than athletics). If the B1G does make a move, Delaney would probably go after UNC/Duke initially or soon after. Best bet for the SEC are NCSU and Va Tech. More TV sets, though not the same academic prestige. Anyone who thinks the SEC will pick teams within the current footprint (e.g., Clemson or FSU) doesn’t understand the television contracts. This isn’t about fit or Mizzou would still be in the Big 12ish. This is about money.

  • Ehhh, I’d rather see the SEC add NC State and Virginia Tech. The Hokies make sense, sort of, but…No Clemson nor FSU. Please. JUST. PLEASE.

  • We talk about defense all the time in this league. Why don’t we use that same mindset in defending our TV markets and recruiting fields? Why are we content to let the Big12 and B1G come down into our country and take the teams/markets/recruits they want??

    Let’s instead consider going after GaTech ourselves. They were a founding member of the SEC, and would bring in grades, solid (if not exemplary) tradition, and solidify Atlanta as SEC country. Then let’s dump Mizzou (since they wanted to be B1G all along anyway) and grab FSU and Clemson who both have solid football tradition and longstanding rivalries with current SEC teams.

    Forget about trying to open new TV markets; the SEC dominates the airwaves already!! Let’s instead focus on protecting the markets we already own!

    • GM – you have this all figured out. And in a perfect world that might happen. GT, to me, adds nothing to the conference except academics. But we could go get Duke and UNC – who both have top academics – and lock up two big-time BBall schools. I like to call it diversity, and that’s what it would be, in my mind. I’m willing to sacrifice for two BBall teams before settling for GT. Atlanta is a big market, but the SEC already controls it.

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