Florida State as a B1G candidate

AndyVance's picture
January 25, 2013 at 9:08p
60 Comments

With conference expansion talk percolating again in recent days, I've been revisiting my previous analyses (here and here) of logical Big Ten expansion strategy and potential targets. Let's remember the givens:

  1. On-field product isn't everything (but it is nonetheless a piece of the puzzle);
  2. Demographics is everything: people watch TV, and TV means money;
  3. University presidents truly rule the Big Ten, and will not accept academic mediocrity;
  4. More than one school in a state does not add value, it splits the same pie into smaller pieces; and,
  5. Notre Dame is no longer the white whale.

It's just like Risk, only with football teams...

With that in mind, there are three basic guiding principles I followed in choosing the most logical targets: They will be in states contiguous to the current, or expanded Big Ten footprint; they will be large, public flagship institutions; and, they will be members of the Association of American Universities.

While there are exceptions to these rules, the exceptions are quite few. Yes, Northwestern is a smaller, private university, but it was a founding member of the conference, predating Ohio State by 16 years. Yes, Nebraska is no longer a member of the AAU, but it was at the time of its admittance, and was excluded from the AAU because UNL failed to score highly enough on a set of four criteria including research expenditures, National Academy members, faculty awards and citations. Nebraska's prowess as a research institution is no less than it was before, but the members of the AAU voted to kick them out nonetheless.

The strategy at this point, based on the criteria above and my previous analysis of television marketing areas, seems pretty clear. After picking up Rutgers and Maryland, Jim Delaney should raid the Atlantic Coast Conference to add the following schools:

  • The University of Virginia
  • The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • The Georgia Institute of Technology

Plucking three high-profile members of the conference will not only put the ACC into a flummox, it will also fire up the engines of conference realignment across the country. The PAC-12 could again choose to strip some members from the Big 12, which, along with my recommendation that Delaney pick up Kansas, could put that conference once again in a state of distress, uncertainty, and ultimately instability.

Instability in this case, is a great thing for the B1G, because it could ultimately open the doors for uber-powerful Texas to bolt from the conference. It is my estimation that Texas has replaced (or should replace, since I don't actually have a window into Jim Delaney's thought process) Notre Dame as the Big Ten's White Whale.

Now, if you're counting at this point, the conference would clock in at 18 members (not counting Texas, because I still hold that pulling the Longhorns into the family is a big challenge, and not the most likely outcome in the expansion games). B1G expansion could stop there, as Ohio State's own Gordon Gee recently acknowledged a target of somewhere between 16 and 20 teams.

An 18-team conference doesn't get as much attention in most folks' prognostications, interestingly enough, though it strikes me that with a move to a 9-game conference schedule, an 18-team conference creates two 9-team divisions.

Ultimately, though, I think the big picture strategy is a push for a 20-team "super conference" with four five-team "pods" (though certainly a 16-team conference would lend itself to four NFL-style "divisions," though obviously the collegiate post-season would have to change dramatically to see any type of runoff ahead of a conference championship). So given the 18-teams listed above - the current 14 plus Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia Tech and Kansas, how do we get to 20?

Florida State may actually be the next most-logical target.

The demographic attraction is blatantly obvious: Florida is a state of huge importance, and while the Gators may be the premiere program in the state du jour, it hasn't always been thus. For those who think "The U" is a candidate, perish the thought. There are absolutely zero compelling reasons to admit Miami to the Big Ten (Florida is a much better fit, but obviously isn't going to bolt from the SEC, well, ever).

FSU was not on my radar previously simply because they are not currently members of the AAU. However, I admit my original snubbing may have been short-sighted. A large, public, flagship state university, FSU has very similar characteristics to many of the current members of the conference. From what I've gathered in an initial online search, the middle 50% of the Fall 2012 incoming freshmen class had a GPA range from 3.7 – 4.2 with an SAT range from 1160 to 1290 and an ACT range from 26 – 29. Those stats aren't bad at all.

The university's freshman retention rate is 91%, one of the highest retention rates in the United States. Furthermore, the school has a 72% six-year graduation rate compared to the national average six-year graduation rate of 53%; in other words, it passes the academic "smell test."

AAU membership is as much about research as it is about anything, and on this front it appears there is work to be done. In fact, the University's strategic plan places significant emphasis on improving the school's research commitment, and mentions improving its graduate programming to the standards incident to attaining membership in the prestigious consortium. As early as 2006, Florida State was considering what might need to be done to achieve membership, going so far as to commission a review from former AAU president Nils Hasselmo (also the former president of the University of Minnesota).

Given President Gee's comments that “there are opportunities to move further south in the East and possibly a couple of Midwest universities," it is safe to assume that FSU's current academic stature and attempts to attain AAU status could be enough to persuade the B1G honchos that the Seminoles are - at the very least - no poorer a fit academically than the Cornhuskers. While Gee did not specify any potential expansion targets, he told the OSU athletic council in December that Big Ten leaders (the people, not the division) will make sure any new school has “like-minded academic integrity.”

Relative to television revenues, FSU certainly has a lot to offer: while Tallahassee is only the #105 television market in the country, neighboring Jacksonville is #49 with 678,000 households, nearby Orlando/Daytona Beach is #19 with 1.45 million homes, and Tampa/St. Pete clocks in all the way up to market #14 with 1.8 million potential viewing households.

Yeah, Florida's a big deal in TV land.

So perhaps Delaney's air raid of the ACC needs to include all four teams: Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia Tech and Florida State. The resulting chaos would allow the SEC to pick up NC State and Virginia Tech, as well as Miami and Clemson if it were so inclined (though I'm not suggesting this makes sense, just a wild-ass possibility). Delaney likely learned his lesson the last time and won't tiptoe around taking multiple scalps at once - as has been reported since, had he realized how quickly the chips would fall the last time, he would have picked up Mizzou and perhaps even Kansas while the Big 12 was in self-destruct mode.

Speaking of which, if the play for the big fish of the ACC works, the PAC-12 and SEC will have to pick up additional teams, remembering that we're all pushing to the magical 20-team "screw you NCAA, we're in charge now" superconference end-game. That means the Big 12 is likely the most vulnerable conference left. While the PAC-12 can pluck some up-and-comers from the WAC or the Mountain West (Hawaii and Boise State, anyone?), the Big 12 doesn't have as many likely candidates. In fact, given half a chance, it seems plausible that Kansas would want to come to the Big Ten, and should enough teams see a better fiscal opportunity with the PAC or the B1G, the infamous grant of rights could become a thing of the past.

Given Gee's mention of other midwest schools as candidates, it seems logical to conclude Kansas is among them, though I'm not ruling out Mizzou as a potential pick-up, as I think they are a much better "cultural" fit in the Big Ten than in the Southeastern Conference.

Which is just what the Big Ten might need if Delaney wants to reel in that White Whale of Austin.

 

Comments

Putter's picture

Although the academic stats you listed aren't bad, FSU doesn't bring the academic stature of a Virginia or Georgia Tech.  Miami and UF have much better academic reputations than FSU in Florida.
Jacksonville is about 75 percent Florida fans and about equal Miami and FSU from there.  Also Jacksonville is 2.5 hours from Tally. 
 

AndyVance's picture

My preference, if I were the almighty conference realignment God, would be for UF, as I think they are the best fit of the Florida schools for the Big Ten. As they are, unavailable, FSU is the next best thing, it appears.
Miami just doesn't make the cut; it is a smaller (by Big Ten standards), private institution, and we only have one of those in the family currently: Northwestern. And, as I mentioned, NW was in the family from the get-go.
Unless the Gators decide they want to follow Urban North, I'd say the Seminoles are the most logical addition from the Sunshine State. (And agree that Virginia brings some amazing academic firepower.)

NoVA Buckeye's picture

Now, I'm gonna let you in on an SEC secret: Florida is really a Big Ten school that plays in the SEC. Think about it, the academics (one of two schools in SEC that are AAU, Vanderbilt), the large student body and campus (on Ohio State's level almost), the big market (Jacksonville) and the large stadium (The Swamp).
With all that, don't tell anyone in the SEC that Florida is secretly a B1G school and would fit right in the B1G had they been invited and accepted. Remind all your Gator friends this because they're one of the weird schools in the SEC like a round peg in a square hole.

The offseason begins when your season ends. Even then there are no days off.

AndyVance's picture

You are correct. Everything about UF that doesn't relate directly to football and basektball (since we spent a decade hating those two things about Florida) is more B1G than SEC. They are a large, land-grant, flagship public research institution. They are AAU members, and in terms of academic culture they have little in common with their conference counterparts.

Poison nuts's picture

Stop saying good things about UF. I am content to hate them over their sports & fan base...Stop....Making....Sense!!

"Death created time to grow the things that it would kill" - Detective Rustin Cohle.

AndyVance's picture

I know, it drives me crazy, too... Before I was in my current profession, I was an agricultural education major at Ohio State, and U of F has a really great program in Ag Ed and Ag Communications (my actual profession - switched when I went back to finish my degree). So I know quite a few people who have done their undergrad at one and their graduate work at the other, and yes, they can be quite insufferable sometimes :)

buckeyedude's picture

Good luck getting UF to join a "Yankee" conference(because that is how their fans would see it).
Great little article you got here Andy! Very thought provoking. I love the "conference expansion" debate almost more than recruiting. U did a fine job, sir.
I agree that The Delany Co. Inc. should have offered Missou when he offered Nebraska. I couldn't understand that at all. I could get used to FSU in the league.(Enter pic of hot busty twins here)
Eff Miami. Let 'em join the SEC. Bad fit for the B1G.

 
 

Poison nuts's picture

I actually thought that FSU might be a very serious target in the near future. Once Mayland & Rutgers came on board, I would have sworn FSU would be at least considered to be one of the next ones. Not sure I love the idea as I have always seen the B1G as a mid-western thing & I'm older so I don't always take change well....On the other hand, there would actually be some serious benefits to this, including adding another school with a traditionally powerful football program, which the conference could use after the 2 recent additions.
As to UF ever joining - I would pray, light candles, practice voodoo, rain dance, and anything else I could come up with for this to never, never, NEVER happen. I would marry a Mich*gan woman first...wait...I already did that...Anyway you probably get it, I despise UF in a way reserved for murderers & in-laws.
 

"Death created time to grow the things that it would kill" - Detective Rustin Cohle.

cinserious's picture

I've heard Maryland and Rutgers brings in a recruiting base that could benefit the Buckeyes. I know the east coast has plenty of talent but I'm not sure how their inclusion to the B1G actually does anything for us. If it really does help, Im 100% for adding FSU based on the treasure trove of talent in that state.

"Get him a body bag, Yeah!"

buckeyedude's picture

That made me laugh out loud, Poison-------------V

 I would marry a Mich*gan woman first...wait...I already did that...Anyway

 
 

Poison nuts's picture

Oh you caught that one....

"Death created time to grow the things that it would kill" - Detective Rustin Cohle.

Hoody Wayes's picture

ANDYVANCE:
I don't believe UF's membership in the SEC is sacrosanct. Money and power are appealing to all players in conference realignment. But, the B1G presents an athletically-viable "Ivy-ness" I'm sure UF finds appealing, because the off-field game the AAU consortium plays brings even more money, power and...prestige. I imagine UF would find it difficult not to trade up, were its souhtern neighbors you've noted, to join the B1G.
The opportunities derived from the transformative quotient unto its region of this, would-be "Southern Ivy League" - coupled with frequent opportunities to play in the great cities of the Northeast and the Mid-West, mandate UF's serious consideration of joining the B1G.  

AndyVance's picture

You're singing to the choir, Brother... I think U of F is a much better fit in the Big Ten than in their current conference home. While I agree that nothing is impossible, I think the benefits of joining the Committee on Institutional Cooperation (the Big Ten academic think-tank), would have to be viewed as really, really big to offset the huge outcry from the Gators' fanbase over a move from the beloved SEC...

GoldenBearBuckeye's picture

In terms of their fanbase, don't underrate their (justifiable) arrogance in re potential domination of BIG teams.  Their crossover rival is LSU now ... I thinkl they might lick their gator chops at the potential of switching that out to Maryland.  Also, they have done very well in hoops against the Big 10 and the potential of skipping 2 games per year versus Kentucky has to hold some appeal.

AndyVance's picture

Fair points all around (although I'd think they would pick a bigger B1G rival than Maryland).

GoldenBearBuckeye's picture

I know that we are into the double hypothetical here, with no divisions as yet, but who would it be then?  They'll howl if they get Nebraska or Penn State and I would howl if they got OSU. 
The safest way is to give each giant a midget.  Remember when Indiana howled when we skipped them a few times when Penn State entered the conference??  Let's make everybody happy.  If UM in our division , we get IU as crossover.  Then they can say they are our rival, sell out the stadium and we can get ours

cplunk's picture

Given the hate I experience from Gator fans and the sudden Gator fan view that Meyer is a traitorous weasel, it is entirely possible UF fans would pick us as their most hated rival (in a fictional UF move to the B1G)

GoldenBearBuckeye's picture

Getting more hate would be good!
I've always been a little bit jealous that Sparty hates UM more than us. I think we are most hated by Penn State (midfield gesture at this year's game aside) and we are probably hated most by UW since Minnesota has sucked for so long.

Chief B1G Dump's picture

Good write up...
I think adding the academic likes of a UVA, UNC and GaTech would certainly allow the B1G to stretch academically on FSU. Just as we expect Maryland and Rutgers to step up athletically from joining the B1G, I would suspect we can step up FSU in academics. Certainly, Im sure there wouldn't be many objections to adding the Noles football to the conference. Helps with that gateway/bridge to the hotbed that is the deep south. You add these four to get to 18 and a couple years later we gobble up ND and Texas...I'd take that against any other super conference. Kansas does nothing for me. I'm attracted to FSU and the packAged UNC/UVA/GaTech triplets.

Bucks43201's picture

Anything written by Andy Vance I automatically upvote first, then read. I know it will be well written and intelligent.

"You win with people." - Woody Hayes

AndyVance's picture

Two things: I am blushing, and you have made my morning. Thanks for the feedback and encouragement, and have a great weekend!!!

Bucks43201's picture

You are welcome

"You win with people." - Woody Hayes

Buckeyevstheworld's picture

I know the weather issue is a little overblown, but do you believe that would factor into FSU's decision if they ever thought about joining the BigTen?

"YOLO" = I'm about to do something extremely ignorant/stupid & I need an excuse to do it.

AndyVance's picture

I don't think so, really. I think the tangibles of academic/research collaboration (and money) and television dollars are far more important to the leaders at these schools than factors like playing in the cold or having to fly the team from Tallahassee to East Lansing once every two years.

buckeyedude's picture

Weather? What weather? We got global warming up in here! There ain't no stinkin' "weather" up here! <-------------------That's the pitch The Delany Co. Inc. should make to FSU.

 
 

cinserious's picture

Imagine a conference geographically ranging from Minnesota to Florida, New Jersey to Texas and everything in between. I understand that $$$ rules everything but doesn't this make you sick as far as historical geographic values?  On the other hand I would love to add traditional powers like Texas and Florida St. to not only help the B1G's image but also put us on par with the SEC. UNC and Georgia Tech would really enhance OSU's recruiting base as well. Four Five-team divisions would be cool too and give us the possibility of a playoff before a playoff.

"Get him a body bag, Yeah!"

AndyVance's picture

When the realignment circus first rolled in to town, I'll admit I was a little aghast that we would abandon the notion of being a "midwestern" conference, because that's been such a big part of our identity. I think, though, that our identity is really in the kinds of schools sitting around the table: large, academically solid, research-based, flagship state universities. Obviously that doesn't hold 100% true for 100% of our members, but it's pretty close.
And yes, benefits to the conference include recruiting in-roads as well as some interesting post-season opportunities.

Citrus's picture

I disagree with point 4. The state of Florida is a perfect example why. Florida is not a unified media market (which you hint at in your analysis). Rather, it is comprised of several media markets. Landing fsu would not capture the south Florida market with the bulk of the people. Because your second point is correct, it would make sense to take more than one school in a given state on some occasions. 
That being said, UF is a strange case in Florida. It has many more alumni in south Florida than fsu and may be bug enough to deliver the majority of the state. That would be considerable because Florida is the 3rd largest state and continues to grow. 
 
If uf is firmly lodged in the sec, it would make sense from a TV market perspective to take UM. Fsu and um would deliver the whole state for sure. 2 schools delivering a state of over 17 million would be worth it. You mentioned not wanting to take um, as have others. I am not sure why but it certainly would be worth it from a TV market perspective unless UF was dislodged from the sec. 
 
Great post overall though. 

AndyVance's picture

I realize I posted this over on the "Gee sez" thread, but I'll share it here, since I think it bears repeating in the context of your (quite valid) observations:

Looking at the Designated Marketing Areas (DMAs) for Florida, you are correct, there are 10 distinct television markets in the state. It looks something like this:

The Tallahassee DMA is obviously a no-brainer, and while it isn't the biggest in the state in terms of viewing households, it is bigger than Gainesville, which is right next door. Neighboring Jacksonville is the #49 market in the country, and Tampa/St. Pete is #19, with Orlando/Daytona Beach coming in at #14. Among those three potential markets (not including Gainesville), FSU could - in theory - help the BTN net as many as 3.9 million households.
I agree with your assessment, however, that the rest of the DMAs in the state are not "a lock," necessarily, as USF and Miami certainly will have significant viewer bases in the Southern half of the state.

 

AndyVance's picture

Also, my reasons for excluding "The U" are simple: they do not fit the mold of a large, public, research-based flagship university. Florida State (and U of F) certainly do. From a "culture" standpoint, and by that I mean the "feel" of the University, that focus on being a huge academic research engine, I don't think Miami is a round peg in a round hole.
The school that may actually be a sleeper here is the University of South Florida. Based on your Florida TV logic, which I think is valid enough to consider, USF is actually a better fit than Miami if Delaney takes two in the Sunshine State. USF, while not perhaps as sexy (traditionally, at least) in football, is a very large public flagship research institution.
Furthermore, it is clearly making a play for AAU membership, as indicated by its strategic plan and its indicators for success benchmarks. While last year's football team stunk, they had shown flashes of potential the year prior, taking down Brian Kelley's golden domers in South Bend. With the hire of Willie Taggart (who took WKU from 2-10 in his first season to 7-5 in each of the next two), they may again find some traction with the huge South Florida recruiting playground.
Like Rutgers and Maryland, USF would be a "betting on the cum" type of move, designed to grab TV sets rather than rings, but they do have some potential on the field over time, perhaps given an infusion of BTN money to help lure better coaches and such.

Citrus's picture

Usf is interesting but they are a ways off academically. You are dead on in your assessment of UF. Going off my point above, grabbing uf and fsu would make TV sense. I for some reason don't see uf happening but for the reasons you laid out, B1G should hop all over FSU if it has the chance. 

Buckeyeneer's picture

Where is UCF located? Any thoughts on them? I know we played them last year, and that they have one of the largest student bodies in the nation.

"Because the rules won't let you go for three." - Woody Hayes
THE Ohio State University

AndyVance's picture

Established in 1963, the former "Florida Tech" is indeed the second-largest university (by enrollment) in the country. They are located in Orlando, and are a large, public institution, though they have not been terribly selective in their admissions (as much as 61% of applicants were accepted until the past few years; they are down to 41%ish, it seems), and I need to do a bit more research to see just how competitive they are in terms of research offerings. They are not, it goes without saying, a member of the AAU, which as we have discussed previously, is something of a litmus test (it is unclear if they are seeking membership... I'll have to dig into that if I start hearing rumblings that they're on the map).

jmacbuckeye's picture

CITRUS, I agree with you that Miami can't be ruled out of the B1G-20 equation. Someone is going to end up with the "U" when this whole thing is done, and whoever does will gain a massive international city and media market, and oh, that just so happens to have some of the most fertile recruiting grounds in the country. Not to mention they put together a pretty damn good football team every now and then. Having lived in Florida for a number years, culturally, the Miami area fits better with the direction that the B1G seems to be going particularly in the sense that they have just added the DC-NYC corridor, a corridor that for years has had a link with the Miami area. Also, I would be willing to bet that there are more B1G alum in the souther have of Florida than the northern half. I can envision a scenario where either the Big 12 or the B1G ends up with both Miami and FSU. I know I would be happy with both in our conference. The more competition the better.

Citrus's picture

Maybe I am a partial because I lived in coral gables for ten years before leaving for art school, I would love to have more reasons to travel back. 

jmacbuckeye's picture

*southern half* my apologies... mistype.
 
yeah, all of my family are from Ohio and they are always travelling to south Florida at any opportunity they get. I bet the same goes for many midwestern families. With so many connections to that part of the country, I just can't envision a scenario where the B1G would unilateraly rule the U out. It doesn't make sense strategically.

buckeyedude's picture

Daytona Beach and Volusia Co is da shit for me. That's where I plan on retiring in a few years. Dade Co. is too commercial and international for me. Miami U would be a better fit in the SEC than the B1G, especially in regards to their recruiting practices.

 
 

Poison nuts's picture

SW Florida isn't too bad Dude...lots of old Ohioans here anyway. 

"Death created time to grow the things that it would kill" - Detective Rustin Cohle.

RBuck's picture

My question is this. If FSU does come into the B1G, can Delaney make them stop doing that annoying tomahawk gesture and chant?

"It's just another case of there you are". ~ Doc (1918-2012)

AndyVance's picture

That'd be like convincing Bert's Razorbacks to quit doing that damned infernal hog call they do... If they did it once during the Sugar Bowl, they must have done it every 2.5 minutes - it drove me crazy!

jmacbuckeye's picture

The FSU chant is terrible. But I live in Gamecock country now and nothing, and I do mean nothing, is more dreadful than the sound of their Gamecock blasting on the loudspeaker.

1MechEng's picture

Except maybe the Penn State Nittany Lion roar played every 10 secs at PSU home games.

Toilrt Paper's picture

Florida State makes as much sense as the Univerity of Alaska-Fairbanks 

bukyze's picture

The TV market is where it's all at.  Even though Orlando and Tampa are large markets, what is the age demographic?  It's no secret a boatload of elderly people live in Florida, and that age group is absolutely booming.  I'm going to assume most of them don't care too much about college football.  What role would this possibly have, if any?

AndyVance's picture

I'm going to have to do some research to find out if there are any appreciable differences in the demographic splits in the various Florida DMAs, because you raise a really valid question. That said, of course, remember that older folks are huge targets for University Development (fundraising), and Ohio State has quite a few active and engaged alumni clubs in the Sunshine state... My gut tells me there is still plenty interest in the sport as fans age.

mr.green's picture

Many of those elderly people are B1G alums. What makes you think they don't watch or have a lot of disposable income to pay for the B1G network? 

bukyze's picture

I don't know.  I assumed - that's why I asked.  I have no idea what the Big 10 representation is down there, or if the numbers would work out for the BTN.  Also, I'm sure a lot of them are down there just for the winter, eliminating some of the football season, which would be the main draw.  I just don't see too many 70+ year old individuals sitting at their TV getting pumped up for OSU/PSU volleyball, watching The Journey, etc..., even if they are B1G alums.

KBonay's picture

Andy-
 
Thanks for this.  You have given a well thought-out argument.  Something to think about.  Plus what B1G fan wouldn't want to road trip to Tallahasse for a fall game? 

Orlando Pancakes's picture

Solid arguments here and I'm not really arguing against any of them; but damn I can't wait 'til about 30 years from now when these soon to be mega-conferences collapse under their own weight and we go back to the old B1G (the one we have now or we can also kick out Purdon't and Northwestern to actually be at 10 members).

mr.green's picture

Georgia Tech and FSU have always been my favorites. Georgia and Florida must be on the radar if the B1G wants to gain a foothold in the southeast.  Forget academics, this is about TVs and there are a lot of FSU grads all over Florida -- a lot more than Miami fans/grads. All of those markets -- not just Tallahassee -- come  to the BTN if FSU comes into the fold.  Miami Is just as big an FSU market as Pittsburgh is a Penn State market. 
Florida would indeed be better for all the reasons NOVA pointed out .... But c'mon.
Virginia brings little to the table.  
 
 

cplunk's picture

Not true on VA.
virgina does two things: 
1) helps, in combination with Maryland, to lock down the entire DC area market
2) opens the potential for the Norfolk-Newport News and Richmond-Petersburg markets. Combined, those two are bigger than San Diego or Pittsburgh
UVA opens leverage in a lot of possible subscription situations.

AndyVance's picture

Bingo. Virginia and North Carolina are the next two most logical targets, given the "rule" of tabbing the contiguous states first. Then on down to Georgia Tech and maybe Florida State, if that's how the ACC raid plays out.

mr.green's picture

The "rule" is made to be broken for the right team, right? Tell me Texas or Florida would be turned away. That's why I would rather see us go after the right team to make the conference strong and claim the biggest possible markets than rely on following a Sherman's march design.
Even an advocate for Virginia should admit that Virginia FOOTBALL has no following in the state of Virginia. Penn State and Virginia Tech (and maybe even Ohio State)  have FAR more football  fans in the greater DC area than UVA. Virginia is just not a football .... anything.

Optimistic Buckeye Pessimist's picture

Tell me Texas or Florida is at the front door and then we'll change the rules and the game. 

AndyVance's picture

You bet that for a Texas or Florida, the rules would be bent, broken, massaged, tweaked or downright ignored to do a deal. That said, those schools aren't necessarily just lying around waiting for Delaney to ask them out on a date.
As fans, most of us would rather see every addition be a "home run," or least a high-quality addition like Nebraska or Penn State (say what you will about either, they brought good football traditions - spare me the Sandusky/football/Penn State issues, please) rather than another Maryland, but the point of this post and my previous two "analyses" of expansion is that these decisions are quite complex, and based on a lot of factors that have not much to do with the actual on-field product.

mr.green's picture

Appreciate the posts and you make good points. I Just don't agree that we need some of these other schools before Florida State comes into play.  
 

Buckeyeneer's picture

I think FSU jumps if we ask them. I don't think they wait for anybody else. That said, I don't think Delaney wants a team on an island so unless he sends out an invite for a handful of progams, FSU will have to wait a little bit. Plus he has to convince the eggheads. That said, the Big 12 is having meetings today and tomorrow to discuss expansion and I could see the B10 timeline get moved up if it seemed like we might lose FSU. Then again, if you were FSU, who already has a standing offer from the B12, why not wait to see who else offers and take the best one available.

"Because the rules won't let you go for three." - Woody Hayes
THE Ohio State University

NC_Buckeye's picture

The more I think about it the more I think FSU and GT will be the 15th & 16th members. And I think it will happen within weeks of the ACC-UMD lawsuits being settled.
You're right about Delany and the B1G presidents wanting to maintain conference contiguity. But Delany is going to have to get the ball rolling on southern expansion. And in FSU and GT, we have 2 schools that are willing to start the progression. Which will be enough for Delany to negotiate a monster of a broadcast package... the current one I believe expires in 2016.
When the money for that contract becomes public, the other pieces (UNC & UVA) will fall into place.

rgarrett22's picture

We won't invite FSU. AAU membership is a much, much bigger deal to the B1G than many are realizing on this thread. Nebraska wouldn't have been invited to the B1G if they weren't AAU at the time of their invitation. And just because they were "kicked out" of the AAU and are still a B1G member doesn't mean that the conference is going to lower its standards for future expansion as a result. I guarantee you that the B1G presidents are pissed that Nebraska lost its AAU status and regret offering them B1G membership.

As the B1G considers further expansion targets, don't bother considering any university that isn't an AAU member. It's just a pipe dream otherwise.

Notre Dame would be the lone exception to this rule of thumb based on our many overtures to them over the years.

Maryland and Rutgers are both AAU institutions in untapped TV markets with growing demographics. Future expansion targets will fit a similar mold.  Georgia Tech, UNC, Virginia, Texas, Texas A&M, and Vanderbilt are some options that come to mind.

Haybucks's picture

If we're eventually going to B1G up to 20, I'd like to see FSU, VA, Carolina and GT added from the ACC.  Maryland could get out of their imposed $40M committment as the ACC crumbles to crumbs.
I travel to conference games as it is easier to get tickets at reasonable rates.  With southern teams added, a late year vacation to a warm away venue would be icing!

I never make the mistake of arguing with people for whose opinions I have no respect.
- Edward Gibbon