Blog Focus: What School Should Join the Big Ten?
The Big Ten Conference recently announced that it will look to expand to 12 teams next year and possibly add a conference championship game in football.
The immediate question is who should join? NCAA bloggers discuss potential candidates:
The Dagger: "Louisville: Getting a tradition-rich basketball program like Louisville and adding some TV markets in Kentucky/southern Ohio will be big selling points. But if academic reputations are an issue for Big Ten presidents, Louisville might be bumped down a few spots."
Every Day Should Be Saturday: "So it stands to reason it’s a pretty good financial deal for a school to enter into, especially once they figure out how to actually get the network on air in the entire Big Ten. Add the additional revenue from the conference championship game that would ostensibly be part of this deal, and it really starts to add up. Look where most of the conference programs are clustered on this list, and imagine what they’ll gain with another week of media buys. On a purely financial level, it’s sort of amazing this didn’t happen five years ago."
Dr. Saturday: "By "explore," of course, we can assume the conference means "bombard Notre Dame from every possible angle." The Irish make perfect sense in the Big Ten to everyone except the Irish, whose very special contracts with the BCS for postseason spoils and NBC for television spoils render conference affiliation redundant, just as they did when the Big Ten came calling in South Bend a decade ago."
The Only Colors: "Mr. Gasaway notes that both of the two most plausible candidates for Big Ten expansion (Missouri and Pitt) look pretty attractive from a basketball standpoint--despite the fact that the financial considerations of expansion are going to rest firmly on the football side of the ledger. That statement is particularly true from an MSU perspective. Missouri would give us a conference foe that, believe it or not, goes out of its way to play at a fast tempo. Pittsburgh, meanwhile, would have great potential as a major basketball rival for MSU, given the sustained national-level (read: NCAA Tournament) success the Panthers have experienced over the last decade."