Blog Entry

Pitt, Syracuse apply to ACC, likely in on Sunday

Posted on: September 17, 2011 10:32 am
Edited on: September 18, 2011 12:14 am
 
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - Pittsburgh and Syracuse submitted letters of application to the Atlantic Coast Conference and are "likely gone" from the Big East, high ranking ACC and Big East officials told CBSSports.com.

CBSSports.com's Gary Parrish reported Saturday afternoon that the league could vote to accept the two schools as early as Sunday. On Saturday night the ACC announced it would hold a media teleconference at 9:30 a.m. Sunday. The league did not specify what the teleconference was about, but the league's presidents are expected to formally vote to admit Pitt and Syracuse Sunday morning.

It's unknown if the schools could join the ACC next season.

Here’s the latest breakdown on what to expect among the six automatic qualifying conferences.

Pittsburgh and Syracuse independently submitted letters of application to the ACC, a league source told CBSSports.com.

Florida State President Eric Barron told The Associated Press on Saturday before the Seminoles played No. 1 Oklahoma that the ACC was excited about adding to its "northern tier."

"Pittsburgh and Syracuse, who have applied, these are solid academic schools, and the ACC is a truly academic conference," Barron said. "Certainly great basketball teams, a good history of football.

"I'm sure consideration will be very fast. I'll be surprised if it's not [Sunday]."

Earlier, a Big East official told CBSSports.com: "There is no scenario where a president applies to a league and isn't admitted."

Ironically, Pittsburgh chancellor Mark Nordenberg is the chairman of the Big East's executive committee. A Big East official added: "It's sort of like the fox in the hen house."

An ACC official said its league has been contacted by 10 schools, but the official would not disclose what conferences those schools were from. 

Also, at last week’s ACC presidents meeting in Greensboro, N.C., the league’s presidents “unanimously” voted to increase the ACC’s exit fee to $20 million. This takes affect immediately. The previous exit fee amount was $12 million to $15 million.

The loss of Syracuse and Pittsburgh could be devastating to the Big East. Syracuse was a founding member and Pittsburgh has been with the league since 1982.

An ACC official also indicated Texas has "reached out" to the ACC, but any speculation that Texas is joining the ACC is "premature."

An ACC official also said there is no timeline on expansion for the league.

In July, ACC commissioner John Swofford talked about expansion with CBSSports.com.

"I don't think it's inevitable, doesn't mean it won't happen," Swofford said. "That [going to 16 teams] is not easy to do. It's a very sexy subject to write about. It's easy to write about it and make those predictions, but if they don't come true nobody remembers you made those predictions. I think in talking [to other BCS commissioners] -- all of us -- what we want to do is what's best for our conference. We had some very thorough [talks] in the past year because of last summer -- that weren't very public -- but they were very thorough. Our preference is to remain at 12 [schools], we like 12 as the number. We're not crazy about 14 or 16 [schools] because it begins to change a number of things tangibly such as scheduling and intangibly such as culture.

"But we want to remain nimble enough so if we want to look in that direction we'll be ready to do that in very short order. Twelve [teams] works. It's not to say 14 or 16 can't work, it can. I don't think [16 team conferences] is inevitable, it's possible."

A Big East official said it's "common knowledge" among league members that Pittsburgh wants to get its name out in expansion talks.

The Big East, trying to survive all the conference realignment scenarios, has reached out to Texas, Texas Tech, Kansas, Kansas State, Missouri, Iowa State Baylor, said a Big 12 athletic director.

“Although I was obviously very disappointed to learn the news about the ACC’s being in discussions about membership with the University of Pittsburgh and Syracuse University, I continue to believe the Big East Conference is well positioned for the future and that the events of the past 24 hours will unify our membership," Big East commissioner John Marinatto said in a statement. "We have been working steadily to solidify and strengthen the Big East  Conference and position us for our upcoming TV negotiations and I am confident that we will again emerge from this situation and remain strong."

Category: NCAAF
Comments

Since: Jun 20, 2007
Posted on: September 17, 2011 3:49 pm
 

Big East official: Pitt, Syracuse "likely gone"

1. $20 million exit fee makes losing any current ACC schools EXTREMELY unlikely.

2. WVU a good fit in the ACC? they're not even on the radar.




Since: Jan 12, 2008
Posted on: September 17, 2011 3:44 pm
 

Big East official: Pitt, Syracuse "likely gone"

But the good news for WVU fans is, the Mountaineers bring way too much to the table to be left on the outside looking in.  We'll either end up in the ACC or SEC, thought admittedly the ACC is the best overall fit.



Since: Jul 9, 2010
Posted on: September 17, 2011 3:41 pm
 

Big East official: Pitt, Syracuse "likely gone"

Hey, FeelDaOwnage, I agree with you 100% that West Virginia brings Nothing as a member to the SEC or ACC for a number of reasons.
You are correct, my friend !



Since: Aug 21, 2006
Posted on: September 17, 2011 3:41 pm
 

Big East official: Pitt, Syracuse "likely gone"

Your explanation is that they bounced because the SEC wants West Virginia.  Mine is because they need replacements for teams that are about to leave for the SEC.  I fail to see why the Big East+TCU minus West Virginia was any better or worse off, certainly not a big enough difference for Pitt and Syracuse, a founding member, of the Big East to feel they needed to leave.
Pitt and Syracuse don't want to be, along with Rutgers, the only ones left from when that conference started football. They could read the writing on the wall and see that the Big East was doomed or going to become a stronger version of Conference USA. If you're Pittsburgh, what sounds better to you: conference games in Maryland and Virginia or conference games in Iowa and Kansas?

Plus, there was never any threat of the SEC raiding the ACC because of the SEC's gentlemen's agreement. South Carolina and Florida blocked the two teams that would have possibly been interested, Clemson and Florida State. Meanwhile, the SEC wasted its time on Virginia Tech, picking possibly the least likely school to want to leave the ACC. Viewing these teams as replacements makes absolutely no sense. Pitt and Syracuse will be additions, not replacements. The ACC is going to 14.

And no, TCU doesn't count. The Horned Frogs only joined because it was a BCS league and they were coming from the Mountain West. The Big East was definitely in position to lose teams rather than gain them, unless the ACC decided to do nothing and stand pat at 12.



Since: Nov 28, 2010
Posted on: September 17, 2011 3:24 pm
 

Big East official: Pitt, Syracuse "likely gone"

Gipper, in my understanding East Carolina will NEVER gain admittance to the ACC.  I think it sucks, but it's been well-documented since 1992 that the ACC doesn't want them.  I wish East Carolina would have gotten admitttance to the Big East when they applied a few years ago, and would like to see them in the SEC, but let's be realistic.  They would become an automatic homecoming opponent, and seriously compete with Vanderbilt for absolute bottom of the conference, except without the academic prestige.  And I say that as East Carolina being my current "if I had to have a second-favorite team" team.



Since: Mar 28, 2007
Posted on: September 17, 2011 3:22 pm
 

Big East official: Pitt, Syracuse "likely gone"

Not too many people seem eager to take KU, either.



Since: Mar 7, 2007
Posted on: September 17, 2011 3:21 pm
 

Big East official: Pitt, Syracuse "likely gone"

Pitt should not go Todd will not win any games if they do.



Since: Aug 21, 2006
Posted on: September 17, 2011 3:11 pm
 

Big East official: Pitt, Syracuse "likely gone"

Missouri should have already been the school the SEC was looking at to go to 14. That was the school they could get. Instead, for reasons known only to them, they wasted their time on a school that had less than zero interest in joining (Virginia Tech), which allowed the ACC to allegedly come in and foil their plans.

If this report is true, and it's a big if, the battle between the ACC and SEC is over, and the ACC has won.



Since: Nov 28, 2010
Posted on: September 17, 2011 3:08 pm
 

Big East official: Pitt, Syracuse "likely gone"

Okay, so I'm wrong.  TCU never joined the Big East, and Baylor, Kansas, Kansas State, Iowa State haven't contacted the league for possible admission.  Your explanation is that they bounced because the SEC wants West Virginia.  Mine is because they need replacements for teams that are about to leave for the SEC.  I fail to see why the Big East+TCU minus West Virginia was any better or worse off, certainly not a big enough difference for Pitt and Syracuse, a founding member, of the Big East to feel they needed to leave.

And as for West Virginia to the SEC, from my uninformed and casual viewpoint, there is absolutely no reason for the SEC to want West Virginia other than "filler".  They bring no recruiting region advantage, no TV market, no academic prestige, and once joining a <14-team SEC, like Texas A&M--no football prestige, either.  At least Texas A&M has "SEC atmosphere and tradition".  But since I didn't say before, I don't see Texas A&M being anything other than a lower-mid tier SEC west team, but certainly does not embarass the league (not that West Virginia would either).  West Virginia just makes little sense.




Since: Mar 18, 2009
Posted on: September 17, 2011 3:07 pm
 

Big East official: Pitt, Syracuse "likely gone"

No one wants or needs East Carolina. 


The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com