Conference realignment is wacky, unpredictable, and consequential, but it is a necessary evil in today’s world of college football.
Television media rights are the golden goose that everyone seems to be chasing right now and it appears that, after lucrative deal followed by lucrative deal, we are heading towards a pair of super conferences. However, reports on the east coast suggest that there might be three when all is said and done.
According to a report from Andrew Carter of The News & Observer, leadership at the University of North Carolina has floated the idea of forming a “super conference” between the ACC and Pac-12 after USC and UCLA shocked the nation by leaving for the Big Ten.
The News & Observer acquired text messages between UNC brass through a public records request, in which school officials discussed the future of the Tarheels’ athletic program.
“Should we explore a partnership with the Big 12 or Pac 12[?]” UNC athletic director Bubba Cunningham texted university chancellor Kevin Guskiewicz.
“We could have a super conference both athletically and academically,” Guskiewicz responded. “Probably would need to be called the Atlantic-Pacific Athletic Conference (APAC). Maybe that’s crazy, but if it would get us a better TV deal, it may be worth considering,” he continued.
“We need to think about what outcomes we want? What are our priorities? Do we want to maintain all teams in the ACC? Is this a new league? Do we want to have the same number of teams at each school? Should we play a national schedule or regional schedule?” Cunningham questioned.
Dreamers dream, but this would be the biggest shake up in college athletics history if it were to ever come to fruition. Can you Imagine a world where the Washington Huskies and the Miami Hurricanes are in the same conference? We’re talking about teams traveling 3,300 miles (49-hour car ride) to play a conference basketball game midweek. That seems quite unlikely and rather inefficient when you put it that way, right?
However, you won’t see me saying that it’ll never happen, because I’d have called you crazy six months ago if you told me that two schools in the Los Angeles market would be in the Big Ten come 2024.