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Conference Realignment: Backlash From The Academic Elite?

In his latest non-East Carolina conference realignment article, the Charlotte Observer's Caulton Tudor discusses the latest increase to the ACC exit fee and goes on to rank the five ACC members most likely to leave. Tudor cites the usual suspects -- Virginia Tech, Florida State, Maryland -- but then throws in an oddball at #4 ...

"4. Duke: If the people who are really in charge of big-time college football continue to disregard and devalue the academic reputations of the various schools, look for a backlash among the non-Ivy Ivies."

I'm supposed to believe that Duke will be willing to leave a conference it helped found simply because the big business of college football is getting out of hand? Right.

So when is this supposed non-Ivy Ivy defection taking place, Caulton?

"Such a movement may take a few years, but it will happen unless sanity returns. Duke, Rice, Vanderbilt, Northwestern, Stanford, the military academies and a handful of others simply will withdraw from the football mainstream but will continue to be basketball powers."

Did I catch "Northwestern" and "basketball power" in the same sentence? Ahahahaha. Sorry. Had to get that out.

While it's unclear what sanity would have to return to college football for Duke and the non-Ivy Ivies to reconsider their stance and stay committed to big time college football, it's fun to speculate on whether Boston College would have a seat at the table for this new conference.

Using USN&WR's latest rankings, the top 10 private schools that play Division I-A football are Stanford (#5), Duke (#10), Northwestern (#12), Rice (#17), Vanderbilt (#17), Notre Dame (#19), USC (#23), Wake Forest (#25), Boston College (#31) and Miami (#38). And if there's one thing I've learned from Tudor over the years, it's that the perfect college basketball conference has 10 teams to cater towards a round-robin, home-and-home 18-game schedule.

These ten schools could easily withdraw from the football mainstream and create a non-football academic powerhouse league -- the Academic Hoops Conference (AHC). We'll show the powers-that-be that they can no longer continue to disregard and devalue the academic reputation of our distinguished universities!

UConn, you can have your coveted spot in the ACC. We are taking Duke, Wake Forest, Miami and Notre Dame with us and withdrawing from the football mainstream so we can focus on our studies. Besides, making wads and wads of cash on college football is so beneath us. How lowbrow.