Friday, May 17, 2013

acc meetings

ESPN writes that the ACC meetings wrapped up today "with little fanfare."  That's because they didn't have to spend the whole week fending off rumors that the conference is the new feeding ground for all the other ones.  Good to know.  So what did they do instead?  Good question.  Mostly administrative stuff.  Here's a rundown of the issues that took some headlines:

-- Madison Square Garden.  What is the future host of the ACC basketball tournament, Alex, if some get their way?  There are further discussions to be had here, but it's clear the ACC would like to figure out how to get its hoops tournament there somehow.  It might be a lot closer to happening if MSG didn't have a contract with a very faraway expiration date with the Big East (the Catholic one, not the future AAC) to keep hosting that tournament.  And I doubt you'll find the Big East willing to move to the early weekend of conference tourneys in order to accommodate the league that helped burn down the one they're in.

It might be more likely that the ACC finds its way to the new Barclays Center in Brooklyn.  It might not have the old-school cachet of MSG, but it'd certainly be an attention-grabber in its own right.  (And you know how "attention" is right there in the college sports thesaurus next to "recruiting.")  What really needs to happen is that the tournament needs to find its way out of Greensboro, permanently.  You've got the premier hoops conference in the country; it needs a bigger stage.  Rotate it to DC and Atlanta and Charlotte, lawyer your way into MSG, or "settle" for Brooklyn, but let's figure something out that gives the tourney the stage it deserves.

And by the way, I'm not too worried about the Carolina mafia trying to force it to stay in Greensboro or NC in general.  When suits sit at a conference table - which is where this decision will be made - they're thinking in terms of money, not home-court advantage.  In this respect the suit from Duke is no different than the suit from Pittsburgh.

-- Conference scheduling.  I want nine games.  The coaches, though, unanimously want eight, and they'll probably get their way.  ADs are amenable to eight because it allows them to schedule more home games, which means more cash flow.  The coaches' argument is understandable from their perspective.  Let's say you're Clemson; you've got three OOC slots after nine conference games get scheduled, and one of them is always South Carolina, and now one of them is going to be Notre Dame roughly every three years.  So every three years you get to schedule one OOC game for yourself.  Which will probably be, like, Furman so you can get that easy home game for the aforementioned cash flow.  This was not a topic of major discussion, which is as good a sign as any that a move to nine games isn't gonna happen for the near future; probably never, until and unless Notre Dame makes it official and then maybe the conference adds a 16th team for the sake of the numbers.

-- Playoff seeding.  The coaches also made it known they want their poll to be in the selection committee criteria.  Once again I find myself at odds with the coaches.  As it is, I worry that the selection committee will be awfully bloated as various voices try to find their way into the conversation.  The fact is, though, that no poll of any kind is used in basketball, or lacrosse, or baseball, and with good reason.  The running joke about the coaches' poll is that it's always filled out by some GA, and sometimes it probably is.  Polls just don't make good selection tools.

-- Ticket allotment policies.  Meaning for postseason games, where a school has to sell X tickets and eat the ones it doesn't sell.  These always receive a lot of bad press because people always go "whoa, they lost money by playing in the bowl game!" (Generally these articles are the result of poor and incomplete accounting, but I digress.)  The ACC didn't come up with any grand new ideas, but they did agree to keep talking about it.  It's probably a net positive, if they can come up with a way to counter the trend of people buying tickets anywhere but through their school, which always charges full price up next to Stubhub or the bowl itself selling them cheaper.  People can't be blamed for not buying $50 tickets for a group of four when they can buy $25 ones instead, but the school does have to fork out the difference, so it'd be nice if the first option, rather than the last, was buying from the school's allotment.

-- ACC Network.  Workin' on it.  See if you can get them to put it on basic here in Michigan, mmk?

-- Stuff they won't do.  Divisional realignment.  FBS-only scheduling mandates.  Some of this stuff is just the media asking, "hey, now that that conference did it, will you too?"  No.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Really sucks that we came so close to sweeping Carolina. That said, 2/3 is a great way to end the year and likely guarantees a national seed for us.

Who would've thunk it? Last year's Branden Kline/Stephen Bruno/Chris Taylor squad was supposed to be somewhat of a rebuilding year, and O'Connor and Co. did a remarkable job to get that squad to host a regional.

This year's squad, particularly with the concerns with Mayberry and Lewicki, was supposed to be another rebuilding year, and Kuhn did an amazing job with the young staff.

I can only imagine what next year's loaded squad, with Connor Jones/Austin Nicely coming in, can do. Heck, it wouldn't surprise me if Lewicki/Mayberry were both here, giving us a ridiculous amount of pitching depth.

Then you add in that, our 2014 class had, as of now, 6 guys in the Perfect Game HS Underclassmen All American squad to start the year (although it still sucks to see Bukauskus going to Chapel Hill), and O'Connor could have a nice decade here. Granted, some of those guys may turn pro, in the way we missed on Mesoraco/Nicolino/Matthews, but it's a good sign to see how strong O'Connor and Co. are in the recruiting department.

Good coaching and success sure helps with recruiting, in any sport.