Mailbag Jan.2: Do You Think Maryland Lawsuit Determines UConn’s Future?

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Q: Des, Happy New Year. Do you think the outcome of the ACC versus Maryland lawsuit will ultimately determine where UCONN ends up in conference realignment? If so, any idea on how we would be able to follow the proceedings? In my opinion, if Maryland can settle for $25m, that opens the door for FSU and Clemson to bolt, which in turn would hopefully open the door for UCONN and Cincy. Thoughts? Thanks John, CT

A: I think that’s the prevailing thought but if I were a UConn fan I wouldn’t be sitting back counting on it as gospel. The ACC already changed the game up on UConn by picking (Louisville) a school with a perceived better athletic program when most conferences are plucking schools for everything but that ie Rutgers to the Big Ten (do you know Rutgers could leave this conference without ever winning the Big East football conference – once?! But it will supposedly deliver the NY market, right?) Props to Rutgers by the way which straight up said one of the reasons it’s bolting is because its needs the money. Anyway, I digress. The other point I’ve been trying to make to folks is this: be careful what you wish for with the ACC. Now, let’s say, Florida State and Clemson go. If that happens Georgia Tech and Virginia may fire to the Big Ten – and may anyway. So, with those four schools gone and Maryland, will the ACC be what it was? There’s more to this than fans feeling UConn has been “left” in the Big East. Folks at UConn have to be smart here about what they want/should do. All that being said, as I’ve said many, many times. I think UConn goes to the ACC eventually, it could be a year from now, but I think it does go. And I hope it does soon because the fans in this state are shaken to the core over this. There is one thing they and you can do though while all this goes on, and that’s be supportive of the programs no matter what. UConn doesn’t need it’s fans being critical or running out on it now – and that’s all sports. Happy New Year, John.

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31 thoughts on “Mailbag Jan.2: Do You Think Maryland Lawsuit Determines UConn’s Future?

  1. weyuo

    We need to see Penn St and BC on our future non conference list. No reason why those two schools are not on it semi-regularly. Win-able games, close enough to drive to and come home the same day, regional rivals. Still want to see Syracuse and Pitt but it’s past due that we see a BC or Penn St on our schedule.

  2. Ryan D

    As an Alumnus and former walk-on fb player (2002-2004, I am disgusted at the “baby like” attitude of some of the negative fair weather fans. You’re not helping the situation! Despite an anemic offense, they were real close to having 8-10 win seasons over the past two years. If you are a fan, you are a fan, win or lose, Big East, ACC, or BIG 10. I realize that the realignment is nerve racking, but it is what it is. UConn Nation can’t feel sorry for itself. Instead must show more support than ever before. Fill the stands, get the recruits and WIN! Be the best team out there for conferences to fish for. CT residents need to learn how to be real college sports fans and not just pro sports. I bleed Blue. I actually went to the Fiesta Bowl and plan on season tickets next season.

    P.S. Dez, you need to help lobby for UConn to join the BIG 10. The media is key and you have that power. Makes a lot more sense than people realize. Adds a much needed bball power, great fb potential, a 4th eastern team for the Big 10, and the Hartford, New Haven, and Fairfield county market. AAU is just three letters…it means D**k! UConn has better academics than most of those schools.

  3. RST

    Yup, football in the old Big East sure was weak, wasn’t it? Really sucked. Terrible.

    Perhaps Florida might have a different opinion this morning though;) Ya think? And Louisville was a team that UConn BEAT (at Louisville!) this year!!!!

  4. kevin

    Dez, any chance we form a league with the catholic schools for all sports and then just play football in this make shift big east? Then we have a strong league for all other sports, and football will have opponets to play. basketball will continue to make money for the school, and we just will have to hope football doesn’t loose to much money.

    I love the way the bball teams are playing! attendance is down but I won’t hold saturday nights game against us, the snow storm was brutal, I was there and it was half full against Washington.

  5. Lost in Transition

    Here is the problem with Uconn playing a Mid Major schedule… most Uconn fans suck at being fans. I moved out of Conn. almost 15 years ago to Ohio and it never ceases to amaze me how fair weather our fans are. We are two years removed from a National Championship in Men’s hoops but we can’t fill the arena. You think other schools have those problems. Our fans can’t get in their seats at the start of a football game and leave early… they can’t even go to the senior game! If we are going to have to play the East Carolina’s and UCF’s of the world our fans will not come… they will not travel. We couldn’t even get fans to go to a BCS bowl. We are spoiled brats who throw a tantrum when our team doesn’t score enough points or it is to close. I sat with my father watching the Marquette game and it was great game as a fan of the game even though they lost. Great kids playing hard under tough circumstances. Yet all he could see was the negative. Love my father… love my team… but I am sick of the holier then now attitude they all have. Wait until we can’t recruit in this new league or schedule the big guys since they won’t be able to anymore with the N.W.O. on the way in college football. THink about it… no regional ties… no history with any of these teams. Our fans just don’t care enough. Those who think SEC will pick us up know nothing about college football. Those who think we are going to the B1G are dillusional when AAU schools like Ga Tech and UNC are there for the taking already. “If” the ACC calls we should consider ourselves eternally grateful, because unless Coach P and Coach DeLeone figure out this mess we are in offensively, we will stay in second position behind Cincy going to the ACC now that academics just don’t matter to them. Regardless our olympic sports, basketball, football teams will suffer in whatever conference we are in the coming years. Not having the names in the conference we are in matters in our future, and no new adds will do anything to reverse this trend of negative feelings. I guess I had some things to get of my chest.

  6. Classof88

    Not sure why people think Clemson and FSU are going anywhere. The Univ of South Carolina will not allow Clemson into the SEC, nor will Florida allow FSU. Also, the SEC already has the better of the teams in those two states so not gain there.

    1. buddy

      You are right. Maybe UConn should try to join the SEC. They would enhance basketball, and give be an easy conference football game for the other members. Since the SEC is secure in football, UConn membership would help them out in basketball and soccer.

  7. buddy

    John, I don’t think the ACC will come calling for UConn. They would have taken them already. UConn is going to have to be happy in midmajor status. If you look at the performance of the football program over the past two years, and the action of the AD towards it, it is clear that there is no desire to upgrade the football program. In response to Mr. Conner. I do believe a depleted ACC would be a lot better than where UConn will likely end up.

  8. WB in WB

    Happy New Year everyone (especially you, Dez)!! Gotta go, I need to watch the women lay it on the Trees again…

    1. John

      No? No what? Unless Susan Herbst somehow gets UCONN into the AAU, the ACC will be the only place we can go. The ultimate goal would obviously be to get into the BIG10

      1. teda

        I’m thinking UConn is going to the B1G despite AAU status. I think it’s quite obvious that UConn has positioned and continues to position itself on AAU. The only reason I think why the B1G hasn’t come calling yet is because they’re still trying to lure ND. Once the ND thing is figured out UConn is going with either with ND or with BC. B1G is about TV sets at the moment. Both these deals seals the entire New England TV markets as well as making dents into the NYC market.

        1. Dave from Boston

          All the big conferences are going after big public schools and only ND would be the exception. The B1G has no interest in BC.

        2. justin

          You can forget them going to the Big Ten with BC. The Big Ten will never take BC unless all other options fall through

          1. justin

            Oh, and another thing, if a school without an AAU status is going to be drawn into the Big Ten, it more then likely won’t be UCONN. Nothing against them, but there are bigger fish out there! Forget ND, we all know how the Big Ten feels about them, but enter Florida State! They’ve been feverishly doing everything in their power to gain AAU credentials. They’ve been working with the AAU for several years on building their credentials in which the AAU told them they needed to improve. They have recently applied for access once again. If the Big Ten wants Florida State and Florida State wants the Big Ten, don’t think the AAU status is going to stand in the way beings they are on the door step and Jim Delaney knows this! When there is a major football power out there willing to change their affiliation, you jump on the opportunity and let that membership process work it self out after they join! Don’t be at all surprised to see FSU slip in with Georgia Tech, Virginia or North Carolina!

    1. dconner Post author

      Good deal – in doing that you’re part of the solution, not the problem. Agree on scheduling, tougher games. No question. That should have been happening by the way on a consistent basis following the 04 (Motor City) or 07, BE championship year. I’m convinced if it had we wouldn’t be having these conversations – that’s my opinion but I truly do believe it.

  9. rich

    Hey, it is what it is, right? Who cares if the Big East is a glorified (barely) Conference USA? Play the BE slate and schedule some high profile out of conference programs and UConn will be fine. Mid level D1 college football is better than none (or Yankee Conference). To use East Carolina as an example, they seem to have a strong following while playing a less than stellar schedule. No reason UConn can’t do the same. Programs with smaller budgets in smaller markets have been playing football at this level longer than UConn and have managed to “move up” from Conference USA to the Big East or from the Big East to the ACC/Big Ten. It’s a new year, new perspective. Could always be worse.

    1. Navin R. Johnson

      @ Rich…the Cincy game was to go to a bowl game and there was about 20K in the stands. Connecticut has a long way to go. You have the die hards and at this point I think they are at a loss at the moment. I hate to be negative here but I don’t see it getting any better.

      BTW any out of conference games scheduled for 2014 yet?

      1. rich

        I agree, CT has a long way to go. I do realize fans are part of the problem, but I don’t think this is a CT specific problem. Just about every team, college and pro, has a hard time drawing at certain points. I remember going to Shea and Yankee stadium and they were more than half empty. I went to Gainesville to watch UF play Vandy and I bought tickets at the stadium office on game day. UF sold 7000 of their 17k allotment for tonight’s game. I think you have to start with the die hards and build. Other fans need something to be drawn to and something to get excited about. If the Big East stinks, so be it, put an exciting product on the field and fans will come. Throw the ball 60 times a game. Win more than one game in a row and create a buzz. Someone tell HCPP to start talking trash about Cincy or USF and manufacture a rivalry. Schedule the entire OOC schedule with SEC teams. I know fans are annoyed and with good reason and in their defense, UConn needs to get them involved/excited. If you build it, they will come.

    2. roberttherugguyraleigh

      ECU’s conference schedule is, yes, less than stellar, but they always schedule great non conference games: Virginia Tech, South Carolina, West Virginia, and as a good in-state game UNC. Retiring AD Terry Holland was a great one, he wanted to play anyone anywhere.

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