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SBD/September 12, 2012/Colleges
Notre Dame Announces Plans To Join ACC In All Sports Except For Football
Published September 12, 2012
STILL THE GOLDEN GOOSE: ESPN's Brett McMurphy notes every major conference with the possible exception of the Pac-12 has "been after Notre Dame ... because they are the Holy Grail, the Golden Goose” of college sports. The Big 12 had been actively “courting Notre Dame for a couple of years.” McMurphy: “This is huge for the ACC because they’re getting everything that Notre Dame brings to a conference, and then obviously the added benefit of having five annual games against Notre Dame football.” Notre Dame is still “very relevant” in college sports, which is “why it’s such a huge deal for the ACC.” ESPN's Mike Golic, a Notre Dame alum, said he believes a lot of the motivation behind the move is "about the other sports, not so much about football.” When asked why school officials are not interested in joining the Big Ten instead due to Notre Dame's proximity to other schools in that conference, Golic said, “They want their independence in football and the Big Ten will not take them without football”("Mike & Mike in the Morning," ESPN Radio, 9/12). Syndicated radio host Dan Patrick said, "I’m curious though, what happened to the Big Ten here? How do you whiff on Notre Dame? It seemed like that was a foregone conclusion" ("The Dan Patrick Show," 9/12). Meanwhile, SI.com’s Pete Thamel writes the move “may cost the Irish some traditional opponents in football.” A Notre Dame official said that the school's “top priorities in football scheduling moving forward will be to retain a West Coast presence -- games against USC and Stanford -- and the annual game with Navy.” That means Notre Dame's games against some of its Midwest opponents “could be in danger” (SI.com, 9/12).
A COUP FOR THE ACC: ESPN's Kirk Herbstreit said this is a "huge day” for the ACC. With Notre Dame playing five games annually against ACC teams, fans can "start to think about some of the matchups in the ACC and what this can do for their image and to try to create more of a buzz about that conference” ("SportsCenter," ESPN, 9/12). Yahoo Sports' Pat Forde writes on his Twitter account, “If move was inevitable (and it was), ACC a better fit than B12 for ND. Wake, Duke, BC, UVa, Miami more in line academically w ND than B12.” CBSSports.com's Bruce Feldman writes, “To those folks who keep trying to say Notre Dame isn't relevant any more, good luck sifting thru your timeline this AM.” The La Crosse Tribune‘s John Casper Jr. writes, “What was that about Notre Dame being irrelevant again?" (TWITTER.com, 9/12).
BLOW TO THE BIG EAST: ESPN's Andy Katz notes the loss of Notre Dame is “another significant hit” for the Big East and “it comes at a time when the negotiating window is open for the Big East to get their television contract." Katz: "Now you lose another brand name." Herbstreit said Notre Dame leaving for the ACC is “just another blow to Big East and their reputation of trying to maintain relevancy.” The conference has "kind of been teetering here for the last few years with realignment and who has decided to leave" ("SportsCenter," ESPN, 9/12). ESPN's Mike Greenberg: “From a football standpoint, the Big East has been completely demolished” ("Mike & Mike in the Morning," ESPN Radio, 9/12). SI's Seth Davis writes on his Twitter feed, “Rough beginning for new Big East commish and my former CBS colleague Mike Aresco. Not that there was anything he could have done about it.” CBSSports.com’s Bryan Fischer writes, “Welcome to the job Mike Aresco. Yikes.” The Newark Star-Ledger's Brendan Prunty writes, “This is also likely to weaken Big East's TV negotiating hand, I'd imagine. You'd have to think RU, Louisville and UConn will look for exits” (TWITTER.com, 9/12).
BACK TO THE DRAWING BOARD: Aresco prior to the announcement of Notre Dame's move discussed the challenge of maintaining the Big East's current membership. Appearing on last night's episode of CBS Sports Network's "The Tony Barnhart Show," Aresco said, “We want to make our schools feel as though this conference has a bright future, and I feel it does. ... I as commissioner set the tone that I convey that we are a new, reinvented conference. We’re bigger and better than ever in football and we’re incredibly strong in basketball. We’ve got a group of schools ... who not only want to stay together, but realize there is great value in staying together. I’m optimistic about that situation” ("The Tony Barnhart Show," CBS Sports Network, 9/11).
ADDED STABILITY: CBSSPORTS.com’s Chip Patterson writes the ACC increasing the exit fee to more than $50M is “perhaps a bigger development for the stability of the ACC” than the addition of Notre Dame. The “significant bump ... further displays a commitment from the current ACC members.” With every wave of conference realignment, ACC football powers like Florida State and Clemson “are rumored targets for possible Big 12 expansion.” With the addition of Notre Dame and the "increase of the exit fees, the ACC appears to be more stable than ever” (CBSSPORTS.com, 9/12).