When Louisville made the jump from the sinking ship that was the Big East to the ACC, the nightmare of UofL being left out of the big boys club was a thought of the past. However, there looks like there could be more conference movement in the weeks ahead. Jeff Ermann, of insideMDSports.com, tweeted out that Virginia was being mentioned often “as likely to join” the Big 10. While some would blow this off as a Maryland website publisher wanting to stir up hits, this is more than that. Jeff was first to report the Maryland to Big 10 rumblings several days before that move became official. Additionally, MrSEC.com reported that they too have heard the rumblings of multiple ACC schools “in talks” with the Big 10.
Multiple sources have told MrSEC.com that Virginia and Georgia Tech have had conversations with the Big Ten, but all parties involved are waiting to see the outcome of the ACC/Maryland battle before deciding to wed. There have been other reports that the Big Ten has had contact with North Carolina and Duke as well.
Jim Delany’s league and any ACC schools on its wish list could announce plans to wed before Maryland’s case is settled, but at this point that seems unlikely. So this not-so-unexpected delay in the courts might slow down — for a bit — the inevitable expansion/realignment shuffle to come.
It needs to be stressed that no ACC school has accepted anything nor is anything even remotely official. The argument, though, now can be made that this is more than some pie in the sky theory created by some hilljack WVU bloggers. There appears to be more smoke, but here’s some other news dealing with this that you need to keep your eyes on.
-The ACC and Maryland are in the midst of proceedings to see when and where the case – the ACC is planning on forcing Maryland to fork over $52 million in exit fees – will go down. In a ruling yesterday, a North Carolina judge won’t dismiss the ACC’s lawsuit against Maryland.
Maryland lawyer Alex Barrett argued a North Carolina court has no jurisdiction over Maryland and because the school is an arm of the state, it enjoys sovereign immunity that protects it from lawsuits.
ACC attorney Alan Duncan countered that in North Carolina, sovereign immunity doesn’t exist in contractual claims.