Why We Joined the ACC
Revenue: Obviously the ACC wants Notre Dame to join in football. However, everyone is wondering why the ACC would ever let ND not join as a football member unless they believed ND will join later. Well, it’s pretty simple. ND fans have deep pockets. Even if Notre Dame doesn’t join the conference fully (which they never will) the ACC teams (especially the little guys) get a home Notre Dame game. Notre Dame has sold out 86% of their last 288 road games. That is an incredible stat. I don’t have the stats to back it up, but I would bet that over half the conference does not sell out over 86% of their home games. Notre Dame coming to town should basically help that home team every time…. And I haven’t even gotten into NBC and Notre Dame when they’re actually good.
Recruiting: Under the current agreement Notre Dame plays 5 games against ACC teams and then they have flexibility for the other 7. These 5 ACC games add away games in Pennsylvania, the Carolina’s and FLORIDA year in and year out. The other 7 can be consumed by their annual tilt in California (it isn’t by mistake that on even years they play @USC and odd years they play @Stanford) they still get their game in the southwest (Texas or Arizona) and then there are still openings for games against Big 10 opponents in the midwest. Last, as evidenced this year, Notre Dame can schedule teams in neutral locations so they can schedule a game basically anywhere. This should allow a USC matchup, a Big 10 matchup, Navy, someone in the Southwest, and then 3 more games of choice. They will play games across the US and therefore play in every recruit’s backyard…. and now onto why it is dumb to join the Big 10
Exposure: This is basically the same reason for recruitment. They will play everywhere. Picture Notre Dame in the Big 10 in about 5 years… where would they be? another Nebraska or Michigan? Teams basically bound to the midwest at this point. Teams that get beat up all season in Big 10 play that they might schedule one tough out of conference game in an area outside of Ohio, Michigan, Illinois, Indiana. Yeah. Big 10 is a dumb move.
While the other sports aren’t as important it is worth mentioning that Notre Dame will get its crack at the best Soccer, Basketball, and Lacrosse teams. However, I think Mike Brey is a brutal coach and will be exposed in a big way once he gets out of the Big East comfort zone… Check his tournament and BCS out of conference resume… not pretty.