ACC Expansion: New TV Deal Has Boston College, Syracuse Football On Friday Night

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The big news yesterday was that ESPN and the ACC re-upped their TV deal through 2026-27. For Boston College football fans in particular, there was a very interesting sentence included in the release:

Per the extension, ESPN has the right to televise three Friday ACC football contests annually which will include a standing commitment from Boston College and Syracuse to each host one game as well as an afternoon or evening game on Thanksgiving Friday.

A very carefully worded sentence to be sure. Roughly translated, both Boston College and Syracuse committed, but are not contractually obligated to each host at least one Friday night home game per year. A third Friday afternoon / evening game will be played on Black Friday and may or may not include either BC or Syracuse. So BC could have anywhere from one to three Friday night games a year (at home, in the Carrier Dome and on the road the day after Thanksgiving), though I very much doubt it comes to this.

My guess is since Syracuse was slotted into the Atlantic, BC and Syracuse will annually face each other on the final weekend of the regular season when other ACC programs are playing their non-conference, in-state rivals (Florida State-Florida, Georgia Tech-Georgia, Clemson-South Carolina) or intra-division rivals (Virginia-Virginia Tech, Maryland-N.C. State?).

Anyhow, sounds like both BC and Syracuse stepped up to take one of these Friday night games a year because ... who else is going to take them? Certainly not Florida State or Clemson -- this would have probably sent their fans over the edge -- and probably not Virginia Tech, Georgia Tech or Miami, either.

So BC and Syracuse take one for the conference and get a bit more TV exposure playing on Friday night but miss out on some high school recruiting. Also makes it much more difficult for the out-of-town alumni to get to campus for a Friday night game. More than a lot of other schools, BC relies on the non-local season ticket holders to fill up Alumni Stadium on Saturdays. On Fridays, may prove even more difficult.

The question is of BC's future ACC opponents, which program is the most ideal candidate to host on Friday night? Balancing the need to produce a compelling TV matchup with attendance concerns, which programs do you think are best suited to play under Friday night lights of Alumni Stadium?

Should it be a traditionally strong Atlantic Division opponent like Florida State or Clemson, or should we save these games for Saturday? Perhaps it should be a mid-tier divisional opponent like Maryland, N.C. State or Wake Forest? Probably doesn't make a whole lot of sense to host Syracuse given the Orange will be hosting their own Friday night game during the year. What about Virginia Tech? Or should it be one of BC's two rotating Coastal Division opponents?

Your thoughts? Go.

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