After speculation that spanned about the last month or so, it was officially announced in New York City today that the Atlantic Coast Conference and the New Era Pinstripe Bowl have reached a six-year agreement, beginning in 2014.
The young bowl game–only three contests have been played so far–adds the ACC just about a month after it had announced an agreement with the Big Ten Conference. Therefore, beginning next postseason, representatives from each conference will meet in Yankee Stadium in late December.
When asked about the deal, ACC Commissioner John Swofford was very vocal about how badly he wanted to create some kind of presence for his conference in the New York market. With the conference headed towards completing their expansion with the additions of the Syracuse Orange and Pittsburgh Panthers in football this season, as well as the Louisville Cardinals beginning in 2014, it’s vital to expand themselves outside of Tobacco Road.
With New York City being primarily a Syracuse-driven fan base–no, not Rutgers, the ACC presence will already be felt on a regular basis in all sports. Adding a postseason contest against the conference that traditionally owns the Northeast region in the Big Ten, the Pinstripe Bowl could begin to prosper from this agreement. Attendance numbers to begin the annual game haven’t exactly been stellar by any means. Interested fan bases from around the area should hopefully help that.
While this shies away from the football subject just a bit, it’s also important to note that Swofford was asked about the heavily-rumored option of relocating the Men’s Basketball Tournament to Madison Square Garden, given the virtual dissolution of the old Big East. He did respond by saying that conference officials have discussed the matter, however nothing further has been spoken of beyond that point.
Jack is the ACC College Football Writer for Rant Sports. Follow Jack on Twitter @JackJ14RS