Wednesday, September 14, 2011

let's not and say we did

So the latest on conference expansion rumors is, at least as far as the ACC is concerned, is Texas.  Texas and the ACC.  I hate the stupid world that conference stupidity and the stupid people who run them are stupiding us into, what with the Big Ten having twelve teams, the Big Twelve having ten, and "Texas Christian" in the "Big East."  Colorado is a Pacific state.  Now, apparently, Texas is an Atlantic Coast one.

I've always been kind of a mini-Texas fan.  My mom's a UT grad, you see.  So I grew up generally rooting for them when it didn't conflict with Michigan, which was rare.  It's very difficult, though, to root for a school that's this goddamn arrogant.  Usually when you speak of a school as arrogant, you really mean the fans.  The hubris of Texas is at its peak at the moment.

The article linked above is a must-read.  Let's break down a few pieces of it.  Practically every paragraph boils down to "Texas is an asshole."

-- "'Texas' first choice is to keep the Big 12 together. That's always been and continues to be Plan A and B,' a well-placed Texas source said."

"A well-placed Texas source said."  Actually, I'll tell you what Texas's first choice is: anywhere that will let them keep every red cent from the Longhorn Network (LHN.)  The LHN is designed to give Texas a revenue leg up on its competition no matter who that competition is; it's why Nebraska and Colorado decided they wanted out.  The LHN is Texas's top priority, and....wait, what's that?  What did you say, Statesman article?

-- "The Joneses don't take pay cuts. Texas has a $154 million annual budget and isn't interested in joining a conference where its brand or its profit margin takes a hit. And this includes Texas' three-letter issue. Not SEC. But LHN. Texas has no desire to part, alter or share any aspect of The Longhorn Network, but it would not be able to retain the network as is in the Pac-12."


(emphasis mine.)

When Texas says they "prefer the stability of the Big 12," what they mean is they want a conference that will put up with their bullshit in exchange for allowing Texas to grace that conference with their presence.

But wait: didn't Texas take a hard look at helping the Pac-10 turn into the Pac-16?  What changed?  Seems there are issues about Pac-12 membership that Texas doesn't much like:

-- "And there's still that tiny LHN issue.  The Pac-12 wants nothing to do with it, at least not in its current Texas-sized form. Texas can't see past its potential."

Well, obviously.

-- "Texas isn't in love with the thought of playing in a division that includes none of the Los Angeles-based teams.  But that's not what's on the table right now.  'Texas really isn't happy with the way the Pac-12 would like to align the conference,' a well-placed source said. 'They want to put all the former Pac-8 schools in one division and group all the former Big 12 schools (assuming Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas and Texas Tech join) with Utah and the Arizona schools.'  Texas wants to be in the same division as UCLA and Southern Cal, which would be tougher, but it would also guarantee the Longhorns a trip to Los Angeles every year. Think recruiting."

Recruiting?  Recruiting?  This is where I start to look like Brian Kelly after his receiver takes four steps instead of five.  Because seriously: fuck you, Texas.  You want to join a new conference, force it to torture its geography in such a way as to give Stanford an annual game with Utah and force old-school fans of that conference to give up their traditional you can recruit Los Angeles?

God damn it.  Your recruiting consists of inviting all the elite football players in the state of Texas to your junior day and having the best 18 of them commit on the spot.  Then you see if the state of Oklahoma has any Texas-worthy prospects that year.  You want Oregon and Stanford not to play any more so that you can recruit Los Angeles?

Fuck you.

The article also contains this last gem:

-- "The Longhorns, the [Texas] source said, have established three criteria when it comes to finding a future home: The first is the well-being of its student-athletes. Traveling back and forth across the country and different time zones can make life extremely difficult for students trying to cram for midterms. The ACC with its Eastern time zone would present a more favorable option for game times and late-night travel than the Pac-12."

We'd rather travel to the ACC because it's only one time zone over.  But we don't want to get stuck in a Pac-16 division with all the Central and Mountain teams, though.  We want to play the Pacific Time Zone guys.  So we can recruit.

I'd like to correct a mistake four paragraphs up.  The sentence should actually read: Fuck you, hypocrite.

Of course, the source is lying and/or misinformed when he says that's the first criterion.  I told you once already: Priority A, as well as B through perhaps R, is the LHN and finding somewhere that will curtsy to it.

As far as the ACC is concerned, Texas does have several things going for it that would be attractive in the ACC, namely, quality sports teams and quality academics.  This does not make them a "good fit."  Otherwise USC would be a good fit.  Leaving completely aside the geographical insanity, Texas and Tobacco Road would go together like oil and water.

So beware, John Swofford.  Beware, ACC presidents.  Do not get sucked in by the allure of the brand that is Texas.  Texas is arrogant.  Texas is selfish.  Especially do not allow Texas to bring in a "partner" such as Texas Tech, which will vote as Texas tells them to vote.  Dork alert: If you've ever seen 1776, you might remember the phrase, "North Carolina respectfully yields to South Carolina."  That's how that would go.  Texas will push the ACC brass around and bully them into allowing the LHN to benefit Texas and Texas alone.  Do not be lulled in by the promise of stability; Texas was the antithesis of stability in the Big 12.  If you would like to see all 12 current members of the ACC stay in the ACC, do not bring in Texas, or you will quickly find members such as Florida State disillusioned with their sudden drop in influence.  Ask Texas A&M how this works.

The road to ACC viability involves a yeoman effort to keep the current members loyal and keeping a weather eye for a disgruntled member or two from the Big East.  Do not, under any circumstances, allow Texas into the ACC; or else, go the way of the Big 12.


Anonymous said...


You would not BELIEVE the amount of non-football school ACC school fans fawning over Texas coming to the ACC.

I mean Jesus, we all know Clemson should be punching above it's weight but it doesn't.

The ACC is VT and FSU, THAT'S IT. The rest might as well not exist. If Texas comes in, what do you think that will do to competition.

And that's if they DIDN'T have the LHN. People want them to come in AND KEEP THE DAMNED THING......

Frankly, it'll be hard for me to still stay a college football fan if that happens.

One reason the game is fun is (similar to European soccer) there are enough contests so that even the little brothers can get SOME sort of hardware (Conference Championships, Bowls).

If Texas comes in, it will be SO lopsided only FSU will be able to compete.

What really burns me is Jay James; host of the Cavalier radio show on a C'Ville radio station KEEPS FEEDING THE DAMN RUMOR!

Oh yea man,

What do you think are the chances of FSU jumping ship. It seems like a lot of their fans are worried about being "left behind".

Brendan said...

Minus Texas, I actually think the chances of FSU jumping ship are small. Better to rule in hell than serve in heaven. I'm sure they like their position as conference hegemon. The only place they'd go is the SEC and there's the troublesome issue of that voting bloc that keeps out schools from SEC states.

If Texas joins (and I think the chances of that are pretty slim too as this is likely to be posturing for leverage more than anything) then FSU might be more likely to take off. I don't worry about the ACC being "left behind" though. It won't be. People say "it's all about football" and it almost is, but not quite; if it were, the Big East would already be dead. ACC basketball will keep it viable.