|Tuesday, November 20, 2012, 11:42 AM- -|
ACC Needs to Get the Message
Maryland's departure from the Atlantic Coast Conference is not a big deal. The fallout from Maryland leaving the ACC could be huge though.
Most Clemson fans like the idea of not having to go to Maryland every other year. Flying liquor bottles and flying F-bombs won't be missed. The long trips and sometimes awful weather won't be missed either.
But the fallout could be massive. Former ACC commissioner of the ACC Gene Corrigan told USA Today, "If I were still commissioner, I'd be worried."
The Rat is just as concerned. Mike Krzyzewski said he thinks the ACC is vulnerable at this point.
We know FSU's athletic department lost money last year and there could be more money to be had by leaving the ACC. Seminole head coach Jimbo Fisher looks like he is ready to jump.
Clemson chairman of the board David Wilkins said yesterday, "We'd like to see a team added that adds to the football prowess of the ACC."
When the TV people met with the conferences last summer they told them that football makes up 80% of the revenue in the package. At that point, Duke and North Carolina became much less significant and FSU and Clemson had the power to take over the wheel.
The Seminoles and Tigers were not happy with the additions of Syracuse and Pittsburgh. Those are basketball schools coming into a conference that already had plenty of great basketball schools.
Pittsburgh and Syracuse are two northern schools coming into a conference that already has plenty of northern schools.
FSU and Clemson want the ACC to get the picture. Expansion is about football. They think it should also be about keeping this a league with a southern base.
The ACC needs to understand that the Big 12 and the SEC are watching. They are waiting around like a crocodile waiting on wildebeests to cross the river. They are waiting to see weakness or a sign for opportunity.
Does UConn bring "football prowess?" No. Louisville? Maybe. Penn State? Maybe. South Florida or Central Florida?
In the end, the football powers of the league need to take control or sit back and watch this ship run into an iceberg.
I have seen every Carolina-Clemson game since 1974. In those 38 meetings, a team with a worse record has beaten a team with a better record only 10 times. It happened in 1976 when a 2-6-2 Clemson squad upset a 6-4 South Carolina team 28-9. In 1980 Clemson came in 5-5 but upset the 8-2 Gamecocks 27-6. In 1987 Clemson was 9-1 and Carolina was 8-2 and the Gamecocks won 29-10. In 1992 a 4-6 USC team beat a 5-5 Clemson team 24-13. In 1996 the Gamecocks were 5-5 and Clemson was 7-3 but Carolina won 34-31.
It has happened in five of the last eight years though. In 2004 Clemson was 5-5 and USC was 6-4 and Clemson won 29-7. The following year the Tigers were 6-4 and the Gamecocks were 7-3 and Clemson won 13-9. In 2006 an 8-3 Clemson unit lost to a 6-5 Clemson team 31-28.
Dabo's first year was 2008 and Clemson came in 6-5 and the Gamecocks were 7-4 but Clemson won 31-14. The following year Clemson won the Atlantic division and was 8-3 but lost to a 6-5 USC team 34-17.
Sometimes in rivalries we say that you can throw out the record books, but that is usually not the case for the Carolina-Clemson game.
Several times in those ten years where team with a worse record won the game, I still think the best team won. I can only remember four times where I thought the best team did not win.
In 1976 Clemson stunk. The Tigers were 2-6-2 and South Carolina was 6-4. The Gamecocks were huge favorites but this shocker ended with the Tigers rolling up 28-9 upset.
In 1980 the Gamecocks were 8-2 coming into the big game. They had Heisman winner George Rogers and were headed to the Gator Bowl. Clemson was only 5-5 but the Tigers got two huge plays. Willie Underwood intercepted Gary Harper twice and the Tigers ripped the Gamecocks 27-6.
I thought Clemson was the better team in 2006. The Tigers were 8-3 and ranked 24th. South Carolina was 6-5. Clemson had some huge plays in this one but turnovers killed as the Gamecocks came from 14 points down twice to win 31-28.
I also thought Clemson was the better team in 2009 when the Tigers lost down in Columbia. The Tigers had just won the Atlantic division and returned the opening kickoff for a touchdown but South Carolina rallied for a 34-17 win by cashing in on Clemson turnovers.
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