When the ACC added Syracuse and Pitt, ACC commissioner John Swofford announced the league would move to an 18-game schedule with just one primary partner. Boston College was paired with Syracuse, as were Clemson-Georgia Tech, Duke-North Carolina, Florida State-Miami, Maryland-Pitt, N.C. State-Wake Forest and Virginia-Virginia Tech.
Sounds like you can scrap this plan.
On Wednesday, Swofford told reporters that a 15-team, 18-game league slate with two primary scheduling partners is likely after Notre Dame hoops joins the fold (target: 2014 or 2015). This modified arrangement will guarantee that each program plays a home-and-home series against two primary rivals.
This is welcome news for Wolfpack and Tar Heels fans as N.C. State and North Carolina -- who play a home-and-home this season -- will most likely be reinstalled as permanent scheduling partners.
But where does that leave Boston College in terms of a second permanent scheduling partner?
In the years after BC moved to the ACC, the conference maintained a league schedule that included two permanent scheduling partners. The Eagles drew Miami and Virginia Tech -- two "rivalries" that seemed forced and less rooted in any sort of shared history on the hardwood. BC program had little history with either program, but based on pre-existing ACC rivalries, the Eagles were shoe-horned into four games every year against the Hokies and Hurricanes.
Now, with Syracuse, Pittsburgh and Notre Dame all joining the conference, there's more of a variety of programs to choose from. The Orange will undoubtedly remain as the Eagles' one permanent scheduling partner, but which program will be the second?
If you take the current primary partners as a baseline, we can eliminate a few programs from this list right off the bat. BC won't be paired with any of the Carolina schools. Not happening. You can probably cross Florida State, Georgia Tech and Clemson off that list too. Seeing as Maryland is stuck with Pittsburgh, the Terps may want to renew a rivalry with one of its ol' timey conference rivals (say, Virginia or Duke). So will Virginia.
That leaves Notre Dame, Pittsburgh, Virginia Tech and Miami as the list of viable candidates for BC's second primary scheduling partner.
Will BC again be forced into a "rivalry" with the
Sethlings Hokies or the Hurricanes? Or does it make more sense to stick the new kid on the block -- Notre Dame -- with two of its primary football rivals, pairing the Irish with the Eagles and Panthers? And where then does this leave Syracuse? Paired with ... Wake Forest?
Odd numbers are the worst.