Shortly after news of the Pittsburgh and Syracuse additions to the Atlantic Coast Conference, Commissioner John Swofford foolishly announced the conference’s intentions to move to a nine-game ACC schedule. Members with established out of conference rivalries (Clemson, GT, FSU, Wake Forest) balked at the idea of having no flexibility to schedule other major out of conference games (e.g., UGA @ Clemson). Nevertheless, the edict had been made, and schools were forced to cancel games with FBS opponents (e.g., Clemson cancelled a 2013 game with Kent State).
With the partial addition of Notre Dame, the nine-game schedule became too cumbersome and Swofford acquiesced, moving back to the eight-game schedule that all wanted in the first place. Notre Dame had saved the schedule, but many were left scrambling to find a fourth out of conference opponent. Clemson was forced to add a second FCS school, when Kent State was no longer available. Wake Forest had to plan a home and road with Louisiana-Monroe. They’ll start 2014 on the road, against the Warhawks.
Now, the ACC is announcing plans to schedule permanent rivalry week matchups. That means for schools like Duke, that don’t play a out-of-conference foe during rivalry week, they’ll be assigned a consistent conference opponent to play in that slot every season. It may look something like this.
Clemson vs. South Carolina (Columbia Campus)
Georgia Tech vs. Georgia
FSU vs. Florida
Wake Forest vs. Vanderbilt
VT vs. UVA
UNC vs. NCSU
Louisville vs. BC
Miami vs. Duke
Syracuse vs. Pitt
Albeit late, this is exactly what should have been done immediately following the new additions. Although the botched it early on with the flip-flop on the nine-game schedule, this is great news for the conference. Hopefully they are able to work it out and add some intrigue and consistency to the conference schedule.
If you enjoyed this post, please click the Facebook “Like” button on the right sidebar. You can share your opinions in the comment section below or by tweeting to@Ryan_Kantor. Thanks for reading!