Conference expansion talk just won't go away. We've passed the point of no return. The FTRS guys got together to discuss the issue:
LilBroey700 - At the end of last week, the Chairman of the Board of Trustees for Florida State came out and publicly stated that the school was unhappy with the ACC's long-term TV deal with ESPN, and that they would be exploring the possibility of a move to the Big 12, although no contact has been had yet, allegedly. Recent news also involved talks about redeveloping the BCS system, likely involving a plus-one game, although Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany has publicly stated his support for a system that would require schools to be conference champions to be eligible for the championship. The implication here is largely that independents Notre Dame and BYU would have to join a conference, lest they have no chance at a championship and watch their programs go down in a fiery ball. Let's talk scenarios here. What would you say the chances are that Florida State leaves the ACC, or that Notre Dame/BYU join conferences, and if that happens, what does it mean for Georgia Tech and its future?
Personally, my opinion isn't so much based on Florida State or BYU as Notre Dame. I can easily see Notre Dame being spooked by the idea of being left out of the championship hunt, and enticed to join either the Big Ten or ACC (for academic quality and non-football athletic quality...although they compete in the Big East in every sport except football). Joining the Big Ten creates a scenario where the Big Ten would then be at 13 schools, and could shoot for as many as 16 to round themselves out. From there, the names I've heard thrown around for joining are Georgia Tech, Maryland, and Rutgers. All 3 are of acceptable athletic quality, are in a major TV market (Atlanta, DC, New York), and are members of the Association of American Universities.
So, my opinion? I think Notre Dame has successfully beaten the need to join a conference for now. The SEC seems firmly committed to the idea of a national championship game that does not have to have a conference championship as a prerequisite. I think the reasons for this are obvious.
I would be surprised to see FSU leave the ACC. With their football team supposedly ready to move into the national spotlight they would be stupid to go through all the disruption that a buyout, schedule scramble and potential lawsuit would bring if they tried to leave at this time.
As for Tech. I am ready for them to make the ACC the best conference in the country. Part of me wishes they had never left the SEC but I understand and agree with the reasons they left. That conference was filled with assholes back then and it is filled with assholes now.
Next time I will not be so measured with my words.
I can't imagine there's too much fear to leave over bad press. It's attention, and when trying to take a leading role in the national spotlight there's no bad press. You don't see Alabama back down from oversigning (not that they just own it either), and you don't see others shy away from recruiting violations or other problems. Bringing attention to a program is good, with the exception being the attention being consistently negative.
What do you all say?