Will Syracuse be playing in a postseason conference tournament in the Big Apple once again? It’s possible after the murmurs that came out of the ACC meetings last week in Florida. Several coaches, athletic directors, and officials engaged in deep discussions over whether to move the ACC Championship from Greensboro to a major market such as NYC.
This possibility has been on the minds of teams and fans ever since realignment took place and destroyed the Big East we came to love. But does the southern-based ACC want to move away from its longtime center, and further from several of its original fan bases. The current contract with Greensboro expires after the 2015 season. Plus, MSG is starting to fill its calendar with a tourney for the new Big East, and the Barclays Center in Brooklyn is hosting the Atlantic-10. Jim Boeheim and Pitt head coach Jamie Dixon have been pushing the conference to explore playing in New York, and no legitimate talks are going about a move.
Although a vote is still down the road, sources have been saying it is only a matter of time until the ACC tournament is moved to NYC. Several legal issues have to be sorted out. MSG can opt out of its contract with the new Big East if the conference does not reach certain benchmarks. Getting the Orange playing its postseason in New York would be the best possible move to keep the basketball success rolling. Fans are already salivating at next season’s schedule, and a postseason tournament in New York is the biggest thing we all miss about the old conference.
It would also work well for the ACC. A spot in the World’s Most Famous Arena would give the conference tremendous exposure to an area filled with sought after basketball recruits, and loads of alumni from several of its cornerstone schools. Plus the ACC would be picking up where the old Big East left off. Add in schools such as Duke and UNC to the existing members from the old conference, and the ACC Championship would become must-watch TV in March.
A move to the Barclays Center is a solid backup option. Brooklyn offers much of the same exposure the ACC is looking for. While it’s not MSG, Barclay’s is a fantastic facility and is less than a year old. Greensboro is the heart of the old ACC, but like with every decision, money and ticket sales are a driving factor. Although games such as SU/Duke or Duke/UNC would sell out any arena, would Clemson/Wake Forest work up North? The ACC will have to gauge how well southern fan bases are willing to travel. The conference has held its tourneys outside of North Carolina before, but never as far north as New York.
Orange Nation has had time to accept college sports are going in a different direction. It’s sad to see the best basketball conference ruined right in front of us. However, a tournament move to the ACC might just create some magic of its own.
Posted: Zephan Mayell