The ACC strikes again?
According to published reports, Pitt and Syracuse are on the verge of leaving the Big East to join the ACC. The ACC pulled Miami, Virginia Tech and Boston College from the Big East in 2004 and '05.
CBS Sports and ESPN are reporting that Pitt and Syracuse have applied for ACC membership.
The schools would likely know their fates in a matter of days.
"I think Pittsburgh and Syracuse would make good conference members in the Big Ten. They'd make good conference members in the ACC," Virginia Tech athletic director Jim Weaver told The Washington Post. "They've been good conference members in the Big East. We'll have to see how it unfolds."
If Pitt and Syracuse do leave, it would seriously damage at least the football side of the Big East. But if, for example, the Big 12 loses Oklahoma, Texas and others, the Big East could go after some of its remaining schools, such as Kansas, Kansas State, Missouri and Iowa State. Iowa State, which beat UConn 24-20 in football Friday, is reportedly interested in joining the Big East.
Because the Big East instituted new exit rules after the last ACC raid, it may have enough time to recover. Teams jumping the conference must give the league 27 months notice and pay a $5 million exit fee. While the money wouldn't be an issue, the two-plus year wait may be.
The New York Times was the first to report that Pitt and Syracuse were in talks with the ACC late Friday.
"I'm so focused on what we're doing here that I really haven't paid a lot of attention to anything else," UConn football coach Paul Pasqualoni said. "I think the leadership of the Big East and the leadership, the presidents within the conference and the Big East Conference office, will handle everything they can do in the best interests of the Big East."Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun