There have been plenty of rumors flying around the ACC about possible defections. Florida State and Clemson have been rumored to have the interest of the Big 12, while schools like Virginia and North Carolina are supposedly on the Big 10’s radar and it seems like that at this time of year, every year, Virginia Tech pops up in SEC discussions. Well the presidents from the most rumored about schools have come out with a statement of solidarity and that the speculation of any schools leaving is “totally false”.
The conference realignment rumors died down for most of this year, but then became rampant again when Maryland announced that they would be leaving the ACC for the Big 10. Maryland’s departure came as a huge surprise to the entire conference and the ACC, which previously seemed stable, suddenly seemed to be ripe for the picking of other conferences. However, the conference had previously voted to raise the exit fee to $50 million dollars in order to avoid these circumstances.
Maryland and its future Big 10 brethren believe that the Terrapins don’t have to pay the exit fee. I don’t agree with that and neither does the ACC as the conference is taking Maryland to court in order to get every penny. Since Maryland’s decided departure the entire ACC has presented a united front on just about every major decision.
The member presidents voted unanimously to add Louisville to the conference and have come out with numerous statements about the solidarity and the stability of the conference. It’s impossible to tell the future, but if everything the presidents are saying is true then the future of the ACC is once again stable.