Are you ready for the next round of college football (and other sports too I guess) conference realignment talk and speculation? Are you ready for thousands of ill-informed tweets and message board posts about Notre Dame Football and whatever conference @Clemson69allday or @allabamma738932 thinks they should be in?
Yeah — me neither.
Which is why I regret to inform you all... it’s already here.
The next wave of conference realignment is about survival. Can the Big 12, Pac-12 and ACC make it?— Ross Dellenger (@RossDellenger) May 15, 2023
How the War for the West - Pac-12 vs. Big 12 - may shape the college sports landscape https://t.co/ZYP90E7vcj
Ross Dellenger dropped this gem on Monday morning, and I was sure there we were going to see a barrage of tweets from media folk about Notre Dame and its place in all of this. Surely this would ignite at least 1⁄2 a dozen journos to finally hit the publish button on their latest “it’s time for Notre Dame to join a conference” manifesto — right?
Well... no — not really.
For the first time in over a decade of major conference realignment hysteria, Notre Dame was not a major focus on “the pieces” of the situation. I’m not complaining— it was just a little strange. Obviously Notre Dame was still mentioned here and there, but with less zeal than we’re used to after years of people pounding the table.
And, honestly, that’s what was really weird to me. If we’re being honest, we really don’t know how all of this will shape up for Notre Dame. Dellenger talks about the ACC actually imploding by a vote of its own members so the schools can get out of the grant of rights deal the conference has with ESPN. And while you may be saying, “who cares — ND stays independent,” what happens with Notre Dame’s other sports? We are certainly investing a lot into the men’s basketball program — what happens if the ACC implodes, or becomes even weaker with the loss of 4 or 5 or 6 teams?
Which comes back to Notre Dame’s deal with the ACC in football. It’s a garbage deal for the football program. It’s mostly uninteresting for Notre Dame fans — as well as most around the country. Personally, I’m rooting for the ACC implosion and whatever fire it brings.
But again... it’s weirdly quiet when it comes to Notre Dame’s future. Hold onto that sane moment for now, because if the ACC goes all War of the Roses on everyone, the hot takes about Notre Dame’s future home/schedule/status/whatever will be everywhere — even with the easiest path to the playoffs since the death of the BCS.