Report: ACC Schools Sign ‘Grant of Rights’ Agreement [ESPN]. … How Does it Affect UConn?

by Categorized: UConn men's basketball

According to an ESPN report,  the ACC presidents have signed a grant of media rights deal that carries through 2026-27.

The net effect of it, as intended, is to prevent an exodus of ACC schools to the SEC or Big Ten, something that has been rumored for the last couple of months. It will now be impossible, or at least extremely expensive for schools to leave the ACC, because their TV rights and revenue would remain with the ACC.

This statement from ACC commissioner John Swofford:

“This announcement further highlights the continued solidarity and commitment by our member institutions. The Council of Presidents has shown tremendous leadership in insuring the ACC is extremely well positioned with unlimited potential.”

Here is entire post on

If schools like Florida State, Clemson, Georgia Tech, North Carolina, or others who may have been looking for a way out, are now locked in, that would probably close off the ACC as a landing spot for UConn for the foreseeable future. However, it also means that other conferences looking to raid the ACC now have more limited options and could look UConn’s way. … So you never know for sure how it will play out.

But at first blush: not good news for UConn. We pass it along here.



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37 thoughts on “Report: ACC Schools Sign ‘Grant of Rights’ Agreement [ESPN]. … How Does it Affect UConn?


    We get left as an outsider…again! Anyone surprised?

    That lawsuit we brought on the ACC has really killed our chances for gettinginto another conference. No one wants a schoolso willing to sue other conferences and schools.

    Our sports programs are dead.

    1. Eric

      It didn’t hurt Pitt’s chances to get in. Remember they were part of that lawsuit. The problem was what our wonderful political leaders did in the aftermath. We had no dogs in the show prior to this and had no right to go after any teams. Blumenthal like all other politicians absolutely screwed us. The travel is going to be a nightmare in this league.

    1. Hip Hop Hood

      while i too would like to see us in the ACC or Big Ten (actually I would much prefer the Big Ten), lets face it, its not going to happen. time to get over it. we’ve seen schools like VCU, Butler, Memphis and a bunchof others survive quit well without a major conference affiliation. we have never really been in contention for the 5 star recruit (in fct one of the rare ones we did get– Drummond–actually set that team back. he proven to be subtraction by addtion).

      our program is a destination program for kids who are good and want to work hard. this next year or two will be critical for the program. lets support KO and the kids. should be a lot of fun to watch them come back and beat the odds.

      we don’t need no stinkin’ ACC.

  2. YankeeI

    After the dismiss fan showing at the scrimmage Saturday, does UConn deserve good news? You can’t sell what your own fans don’t even want to see!

    1. buddy

      You are correct on that. The only good news will be that after this seasons disaster the coaching staff will be gone. If they can’t field a team for a spring game, what will happen when the regular season comes along?

      1. UCONN93

        Desmond Conner says UCONN will never fired PP. Desmond is an idiot but he seems to be connected with the bozos in the UCONN athletic department.

        1. Hip Hop Hood

          Dez has no insight and must have a word count in his contract because he rarely writes more than 50 at a time. he really is unimpressive.

        2. Tom

          Desmond is an idiot, and he is hostile to the first amendment. He deletes comments that he does not like.

        3. Tom

          Manuel is clueless. He should never have been hired to begin with because he had no big time experience as an AD. His only experience was a t buffalo, arguably one of the worst Div I (in name only) schools in the country. And his performance at UConn bears that out. The first big blunder was hamstringing Ollie with that short term contract, ironically because “he had no experience;” coming from a a bozo like Manuel that was laughable. UConn has paid for that short term contract. It is only fortunate that Ollie’s excellent performance is recovering from the loss caused.

  3. Hip Hop Hood

    Why don’t we push for a granting of rights? It’s clear that no conference wants us. We have no where to go. We are stuck here so it’s time to make sure no other teams leave us behind.

    1. Tom

      Don’t forget, most ESPN stories have an ESPN agenda behind them. It was speculated that ESPN was behind UConn being rejected by the ACC in addition to BC – or, that they had a role in instigating BC.

      1. Foley

        The word on the UCONN boards is that BC led the charge and convinced enough ACC schools to block us. They were laughing at us then and laughing at us again now.

  4. revkev

    It all seems like a Pyramid or Ponzi scheme and UConn bought in a little too late to make the killing that the other participants have realized.

    By trying to buy in UConn with a nice regional football program who was competitive to great nationally in the other sports now finds itself teetering on the edge.

    I think UConn is still teetering and that’s a credit to the people who are there now who have inherited the messes of their predecessors. The scale may still tip the right way from them.

  5. Eric - 1985

    I completely disagree with the notion that this Grant of Rights is negative for the Huskies. The ACC was never going to be a stable conference until this was done, and I never aspired to the ACC for that reason. This action both made the ACC a more desirable destination as well as negated the appeal of raiding ACC for the Big 10 and SEC.

    UConn should target the Big 10. While the football program is, charitably, a terrific embarrassment and a huge negative as far as UConn’s attractiveness to the Big 10, UConn brings other positives. The academics should (soon) be at AAU level. The other sports are at a high level. The fan interest (notably ex-football) is high in the contiguous areas where the Big 10 Network would join the basic cable package. And, being a state U, like most current members, UConn has resources.

    Maybe not immediately, but eventually I expect UConn to get a call from the Big 10. I just hope it comes before the call from the ACC. The economics are vastly superior in the Big 10.

    1. Foley

      UCONN brings no new TV markets to the Big 10. What’s the motivation for brining us in? If sports success were an issue, Rutgers would never have gotten an invitaiton.

      1. Hip Hop Hood

        you’ve got to believe that if Rit hadn’t already been announced, that there is NO WAY Rutgers would be admitted to the Big Ten. what an embarrassment for that conference.

  6. joesimsbury

    Who knows what impact the grant of rights agreement will have – if we have learned nothing else from this conference travail, we now know to expect the unexpected. I think it might actually help.

    As an aside – apparently Manuel spoke this morning at the Middletown Chamber with apparent defiance on the conference issue. He claims UConn will thrive in the new Frankenstein conference, the AAC.

    Let’s look at some basic facts. We have no rivals. (Are you clamoring for a rivalry with Cincinnati?) There is no payout. (The media deal worked out by Aresco pays UConn less than Geno’s salary each year.) The travel burden is awful. (“Hey boys, we have a Thursday night game in Houston!”)

    It’s hard to know whether he actually believes what he says or that he is trying to build false hopes. Whatever the motive, it is insulting to hear. I say just be quiet and work your butt of to get us out of this conference nightmare. Stop the sugar coating – its not working.

  7. joesimsbury


    No sure what you’re talking about re: TV markets – Hartford is ranked 30th in the country. It’s bigger than Omaha, Des Moines, Milwaukee, Columbus for starters. UConn also noses into the New York market.

    I think the big impediment to a B1G invite is lack of AAU status. Herbst is working her tail off to qualify us for AAU status. Ironically, the President of the AAU is Scott Cowen, the Tulane president and a UConn grad (CLAS 1968).

    1. Foley

      How many expansion were taken from the markets you mention?

      Rutgers already brings the NYC market for the Big Ten.

    2. buddy

      Both she and Warde are way out of touch with reality. The ship of conference realignment sailed while they were monitoring the situation. UConn is left behind here. Academics have improved and UConn has been turned in to a midmajor similar to Buffalo. They are both failures. I don’t understand how the Board of Trustees of UConn can stand by and watch this disintegration. Once the athletic dollars stop coming in, and they will after this year, UConn athletics on a national level is done.

      1. joesimsbury


        Have to disagree re: Herbst. I think she is doing a great job in her realm. But, I have to admit that I’m losing faith in Manuel. I know it has only been a year, but that is an eternity when you are in the conference disaster UConn finds itself in. His comments yesterday in Middletown display a mind-set of resignation to being stuck in this mess of a conference – the AAC. To me, that is unacceptable.

        Up until now I was willing to give Manuel support, but he may not be the right guy. In retrospect, a couple of things bothered me that I was willing to overlook. Now, however, some of his past conduct looks questionable. Many of you have brought these things up in the past and I thought it was petty. Now I can see your points.

        A couple of things jump out. When the ACC was looking after the Maryland departure, Jurich of Louisville was on the circuit working his tail off to get Louisville in. Even Jurich thought UConn was the pick, but he worked it hard and got it done for his school. Where was Manuel? In the Bahamas with Geno’s team! He says he was working from there. I’ve been to the Bahamas and somehow your attention span and seriousness becomes questionable. We already had issues with the ACC. Our AD should have been flying/driving to every member institution, hat in hand, telling them “mea culpa” and how much we wanted in and personally selling the brand.

        Then he goes to China on a Nike junket for a couple weeks in January. Normally, I understand an AD being treated to a trip by big sponsor/vendor, not this year, however. At the time, the conference situation was fluid with Catholic 7 and the ultimate demise of the Big East developing. Sending an assistant director and staying home to shore up the home front was the better way to go.

        We have a right to expect better. Manuel has just about doubled his UBuffalo salary in this new job and we don’t have much to show for it.

        We need a sense of urgency about this conference mess and we need it now!
        I would challenge Manuel by giving him an opportunity to improve – and quickly! I don’t want hear that these things are beyond his control. If that is the case, then why do you need a “Rock Star” to effect change you can’t control? We pay him about $600k year, including incentives. Granted he followed a terrible AD and recovering from that administration has been tough, but get it done!

        No more pablum in the form of telling us about how UConn is going to thrive in the horrid AAC It’s time for him to be the “Rock Star” that Herbst said we hired!

  8. Dave in Atlanta

    As an outsider, my view is that UConn is still a perfect fit for the ACC and shouldn’t be grouped with Cincinnati, which is much more like Memphis, Houston, etc.

    UConn is a state school. It has great success in basketball. It sits between NYC and Boston. What’s not to like?

    Also, you have ESPN, the same network building an ACC network. ESPN could mandate the inclusion of UConn. Get your politicians involved – I’m sure there’s a tax break/penalty or two that could use some tweaking.

    With 15 ACC schools in every sport except football, adding one more school – UConn – makes a ton of sense:

    Va Tech
    Notre Dame*

    NC State
    Wake Forest
    Ga Tech

    In basketball, annual home/away within own division plus one game with other division equals a 22-game league schedule.

    In football, play every team within own division plus two with other division equals eight league games for North and nine for South. Then add in the Notre Dame games for quality filler.

    Just sayin’.

    1. Foley

      UCONN may have been the “perfect fit” for the ACC but as the ringleaders of the lawsuit, UCONN is dead to the ACC.

  9. Dave in Atlanta

    That’s why, at this point, you strong-arm your way in.

    Have your state lawmakers go after ESPN. Use whatever leverage you have – and no one would blame you for doing so. It worked for Virginia Tech 10 years ago.

    This is a big deal and a lot of money for your state university is riding on it. If your politicians are too weak to stand up for your state, vote them out.

    1. buddy

      UConn does not have the leadership required to strong arm their way into any power conference. I wish it wasn’t true, but it is. The president is strengthening the academic programs, but for athletics we have seen that they don’t matter. UConn is rated higher academically that Rutgers, Syracuse Pitt and Louisville yet the did not get an invite out. So academics don’t matter. The AD failed to present a convincing argument to other conferences and was content on vacationing in the VI when the Louisville AD made his presentation to the ACC. Now he is hallucinating that all is well.

  10. joesimsbury


    UConn does bring a new TV market to the B1G – you said it didn’t. Rutgers does not “bring” the NYC market anywhere. Rutgers is a small attraction in a huge market. UConn adds to it, while bringing the 30th ranked TV market in with both feet.

    (P.S. – For what it is worth, Tranghese said the college market in NYC ranks UConn higher than Rutgers anyways.)

    1. Foley

      Can’t believe you mentioned Tranghese. We spent years mocking this bumbling idiot. His lack of leadership created the mess we;re in now.

  11. joesimsbury

    @ Foley

    Agreed, not the best source. But, he was quoted saying this in NYT article last month.

    But address the merits on the TV market issue. Doesn’t UConn pretty much bring the CT TV market, plus a bit of NYC?

  12. Jake

    Having only 3500 people show up for the spring game does not bode well for UCONN’s shot of getting a call from the ACC or B1G. It’s all about football, and UCONN is a basketball school where the football program gets lost in the shuffle. For basketball, it will really hurt the mens’ team’s RPI, and a strong non-conference schedule for both men and women will be important. After Louisville leaves next year, 4 schools (UCONN, Cincy, Temple, and Memphis) will dominate the Glorified Sunbelt Conference known as the AAC in mens’ basketball, and the womens’ side will really become the UCONN Invitational, where 60 point conference wins will be the norm, not the exception. Do we blow it up with football and beg the Catholic East to let us back in, or make a stronger effort than has been made to build the football program?

  13. Hip Hop Hood

    Calhoun built a great brand, as did Auriemma. There’s no reason Ollie can’t continue to carry the torch. On the football side, it’s never going to be what the fans would like. Just the way it is, no more, no less.

  14. Eric

    Uconn wil never get into the ACC now… the damage is done and we have burnt that bridge. Now we have to hope that the B1G sees our potential and will bring us in to the fold.

  15. joesimsbury

    @Hip Hop Hood

    Wish it were that easy for Ollie. He is a true bright spot in this bleakness. I certainly appreciate your optimism. Let’s look at history, however.

    UConn developed great BB because of great coaching and because we were in the Big East. Kids wanted to play against great competition and in MSG a couple times a year. Thus, we started to get some players. We started to compete and be respected on a national stage. We started to rack up championships.

    What do we offer now? An away schedule against UCF, ECU, USF, Tulane, Tulsa, SMU? This is a big problem.
    Even Geno’s teams are going suffer eventually if UConn remains trapped in the horrid AAC.

    In a year and a half, the whole future of UConn sports has changed dramatically for the worse. Instead of acting like the Black Knight in Monty Python, the UConn hierarchy should just tell us that and tell us how they are going to work to get us out of it. Manuel and the rest of the sports establishment at UConn doesn’t want to discuss this because a lot of the problems happened post-Hathaway. But they need to get real now.

  16. Foley

    I thought we were ignorning Hip Hop Hood. Looks like were drawn to him/her like moths to a flame.

  17. joesimsbury

    @ Foley

    Everybody can make a good point now and then! Even me!

    Hell, a broken clock is right twice a day!

  18. AZHusky

    What do we offer now is right, we were left on the outside looking in. Makes it a whole lot harder for KO to get recruits, and even more so, how does the University get us BB fans excited to watch us play SMU, Tulane, East Carolina or Tulsa?

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