Tuesday, May 12, 2009

ACC Doesn't Need Basketball Divisions

I'm kind of on the fence about the ACC expanding to an 18-game hoops season. I'm not on the fence about the ACC going into a divisional format.

I hate the idea.

The ACC was perfect five years ago. Then, we had nine teams that all played each other twice. The ACC tournament was flawless (aside from the crappy No. 8 vs No. 9 game on Thursday night and the NCAA knew exactly how the conference's hierarchy lied. There wasn't any guessing if the 5th place team really was better than the 6th.

But we are stuck with what we have now. The ACC is a 12-team league with an unbalanced schedule and a crappy football championship game.

But going to a divisional format in basketball is just plain stupid. The Big XII did away with it very quickly. So did the Atlantic 10 and Big East. The SEC should. I only think it works in smaller conferences where there are travel issues. The ACC, aside from BC and Miami, is really quick compacted. I mean, quite a few games are traveled by a bus.

First off, how would a divisional format be set up? Like the football divisions? Unless it is football season, I still couldn't tell you who was in the Atlantic and Coastal divisions. I'm a sports nut and I have no idea. Setting it up like that would be silly.

Also, it would put UNC and Duke in the same division. That would almost kill off the hopes of anyone else in the division since those two have dominated for so long. It would also give the other division a great chance to make something out of their seasons by by-passing the Heels and Blue Devils.

If you put those two in seperate divisions, then you set up a whole new set of problems. One, the divisions for football and basketball would be different unless they realigned football. That's confusing as hell and wouldn't help anything. Television partners (and fans) would demand that UNC and Duke play twice each year which would be unfair to UNC and Duke. Why should they have a tougher schedule than the teams in their division? You still didn't solve the unbalanced schedule.

And there is no way in heck that anyone will accept only one UNC-Duke game. That's the bread and butter of the ACC and to kill that off would kill off much of the league's identity.

To the people who make these decisions ... we don't like it. Sure, we didn't like expansion either but we understood the point. We don't understand this one.

To me, if you are going to expand to an 18-game schedule, then you should have every team have three "dance partners". Right now UNC has Duke and NC State in which they play twice each year. Add in Wake Forest. For the remaining 12 games, you play half of the rest of the league twice (4 teams) and the other half once (4 teams). Then rotate them from year to year.

Other than that ... stop screwing with our league!!!

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