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NYT: Pitt and Syracuse Talking to ACC About Joining

2

The New York Times is reporting that Pitt and Syracuse "are engaged in talks about joining the Atlantic Coast Conference". Syracuse, if you remember, was on the wish list the last time the ACC expanded, though it obviously didn't end up making it in. The conference and the two schools issued standard no comments. No other information is out there, so it's unknown whether the ACC is looking to be a 14-team league like the SEC (A&M plus one) and Pac-12 (plus the Oklahoma schools) are supposedly on the way to becoming or if this is some sort of preliminary stage for accepting Texas and Texas Tech later. There also is the possibility the conference is worried about losing one or more schools to the SEC, but again, no other information is out there yet. UPDATE CBS's Brett McMurphy is reporting that a high ranking ACC official told him that Pitt and Syracuse have officially submitted applications to join the league. Also, he was told the conference's presidents unanimously agreed to raise the league's exit fee to $20 million at a meeting in Greensboro, NC last week.

The Big East Wants $200 Million Per Year From TV

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The Big East apparently turned down a new TV contract similar to the ACC's $155 million per year deal, and it hopes to get $200 million annually. The reason? The Pac-12 deal is soooo big, you, uh, can't help but give the Big East an exorbitant sum too? By comparison, the SEC's combined CBS and ESPN contracts give the conference $205 million annually. Granted, the basketball portion of the Big East's next contract will be split 17 ways (it'll go into effect after TCU joins), so the all the schools won't be getting SEC money. However if you doubt the Big East's ability to get an eye-popping number, just consider that ESPN and Fox will again be bidding against Comcast-owned NBC. That's the combination that made the magic happen for the Pac-12. Incidentally if the Big East can get that $200 million, especially if any of it comes from ESPN, I'll bet Mike Slive will be on the phone with the Worldwide Leader within the hour.

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