"We are a thousand percent committed to the ACC and committed to making this the best program and best conference we possibly can," Swinney told reporters Tuesday before the start of the Dabo Swinney Football Camp. "It has really been very frustrating (from a recruiting standpoint). I think there has been a lot of irresponsible blogging, reporting or whatever you want to call it (about changing conferences). It has been a real distraction."
The ACC ultimately signed away more rights than its competing conferences, and it did so for a smaller payout. The proposed changes to college football’s postseason are also expected to add even more pressure for conference realignment. The end of the ACC as we know it seems inevitable, and the conference has only itself to blame.
The boosters, bloggers and fans driving the "ditch the ACC" agenda could not have orchestrated a more effective misinformation campaign. Their bluster and volume have drowned out the more reserved voices which have called for a deeper inspection of this issue. Any one of these myths taking hold would be powerful, all five taking hold has had extraordinary influence.
It's no secret why the ACC is considered a weakling football league and doesn't have the drawing power or TV allure of the big-boy conferences. It's not that the ACC has let down Florida State; it's that Florida State – and Miami – have let down the ACC. If these two programs had remained the dominant, dynastic powers they were a decade ago, the ACC would be considered one of the premier leagues in college football. Instead, the Seminoles and Hurricanes have become the biggest disappointment along Tobacco Road since the Marlboro Man snuffed out his last cigarette.
This is not to say the Seminoles don't have every right to explore the possibility of moving to the Big 12 and making significantly more TV money, but spare us the whining about the ACC being a basketball conference. The reason it's a basketball conference is because FSU and Miami have failed miserably in making it a football conference.
In an interview with the Orlando Sentinel, FSU athletics director Randy Spetman said his programs were "committed to the ACC" and that any conversations about the school switching conferences is pure nonsense.
"We're in the ACC. We're committed to the ACC," Spetman said. "That's where our president and the board of trustees has committed to, so we're great partners in the ACC."
We've heard some rumors of you guys flirting with the Big 12. What's going on there?
TN: It's all rumor on our end as well. But I do believe FSU is constantly examining its options.
On a related note, as an FSU fan, do you want out of the ACC? And if so, would you prefer the Big 12 or the SEC?
TN: I do, for a variety of reasons mostly relating to the conference preferring hoops over football while the football schools bring in the money, and preferential treatment for the Tobacco Road schools. And yeah, the SEC is a much better fit geographically and culturally.
It’s much easier to stay in than get knocked out and try to get back in," Luck said. "That was always the fear. I’m not trying to say the Big East is on the outside looking in, but clearly, with the loss of so many good teams in the last 10 years between VT, Miami, BC, Pitt, TCU, there’s a lot of top 20 football teams that had left and are playing in other conferences."
The number one topic facing Pitt athletics right now is this - when do the Panthers get to begin competing in the ACC? I am now becoming more and more convinced in the conversations I've had in the past two days that Pitt will be in the ACC in 2012 and here is why - the school has had enough with the way the Big East has mangled this all and frankly is waiting on West Virginia.
If - or more accurately - when, West Virginia finally declares they are leaving for the 2012 season officially and the Big 12 schedule is announced with WVU on it, Pitt is going to follow them out the door and dare the Big East to stop them.
West Virginia is headed to the Big 12, according to a person with direct knowledge of the situation, a move that leaves the Big East with five football programs and an uncertain future. The person said Tuesday that the Mountaineers had "applied and are accepted," leaving only legal entanglements from making the move official. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal had not been formally announced.