To bloggin' Rick Pitino, Jim Calhoun, Mick Cronin and whoever is left coaching Big East men's basketball. Boston College coach Steve Donahue has a message for you.
Just to think of the teams that we have in this conference now, and the day in and day out battles, the 18 games now that you play. Far and away in my opinion, from top to bottom, there's no league close to the ACC in basketball now. Not even close. There's no program that's been down historically or recently in regards to every program has been to the NCAA tournament since 2007. No league can say that.
Shots ... fired?
Donahue's claim, of course, is technically accurate. Every ACC program has been to the NCAA Tournament at least once since 2007. The low man on the totem pole is, of course, the
Sethlings Hokies, followed by Miami 2008 then Boston College in 2009. (Wait, I thought the 2003-04 round of expansion was all about basketball?) Every other program in the ACC has been to the Dance at least once since 2010.
In contrast, from the Big East, Rutgers last made the tournament in 1991. Providence and DePaul's NCAA Tournament drought dates back to 2004 while South Florida notched its first-ever win in the NCAA Tournament this past season. A few of the newcomers also come with hoops baggage -- SMU hasn't made the NCAAs since 1993. Central Florida has made four NCAA Tournament appearances but none as recent as 2005. The Knights are also winless in tournament play.
Of course it's easy to say that no one comes close to the ACC in basketball and cite this stat after the conference just poached 2/9 of the Big East's 2012 NCAA Tournament teams and three of the conference's top programs. Still, we anticipate the ACC-Big East hoops Cold War to rage on. Personally, I love seeing Coach Donahue stoking the flames just a little more, even if the Boston College program isn't in the best position to weigh in on the ACC vs. Big East debate.