Maryland & Rutgers to join Big Ten Conference

By Kevin Kelley -

Big TenThe Maryland Terrapins and the Rutgers Scarlet Knights will each join the Big Ten Conference, ESPN has reported.

The University of Maryland’s Board of Regents voted today to accept an invitation to join the Big Ten. An official announcement will be made by the school at 3 p.m. ET. The Big Ten Network will follow with a special report at 4 p.m.

The Terrapins will join the Big Ten for the 2014 football season after playing their final season in the ACC next year. There is a $50 million fee to leave the ACC, but is is expected that Maryland will attempt to negotiate that price down.

Maryland was a charter member of the ACC in 1953. Prior to that, the Terrapins were a member of the Southern Conference from 1922-1951 before going Independent for the 1952 season.

“Our best wishes are extended to all of the people associated with the University of Maryland. Since our inception, they have been an outstanding member of our conference and we are sorry to see them exit,” ACC commissioner John Swofford said in a statement. “For the past 60 years the Atlantic Coast Conference has exhibited leadership in academics and athletics. This is our foundation and we look forward to building on it as we move forward.”

ESPN also reports that once Maryland is officially accepted, the Rutgers Scarlet Knights will also move to the Big Ten and could announce their decision as soon as Tuesday. Rutgers has been a member of the Big East since 1991.

Rutgers would also like to join the Big Ten by 2014, but that would require them to negotiate out of the 27-month waiting period that is stipulated by the Big East. Pittsburgh and Syracuse successfully did that earlier this year.

The Big Ten is likely adding Maryland and Rutgers to expand their footprint in the Northeast television market. It is believed that will help them in negotiations when their first-tier media rights expire in 2017.

With Maryland leaving the ACC, the conference will be down to 13 schools. Jon Wilner reported earlier today that a potential target for the ACC will be UConn, and that the Huskies could make an announcement as early as Tuesday.

That will continue the domino effect, as the Big East will need to scramble to find two replacements. They had been rumored to be deciding between Air Force and BYU, but now they could simply take both of them. Stay tuned.

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Comments (13)

This move by the Big-Ten raiding yet another key Big East member makes it less likely they will be able to land BYU. There are still substantiated rumors of Big 12 interest in adding BYU that could reach fruition sooner than later.

The Big East is about to die. Without Rutgers and UConn they longer have the Northeast TV market. They will not be able to add BYU or Air Force, as they lack the money to pay the former and the latter has nowhere to park their Olympics.

The next domino after Connecticut will be San Diego State backing out of the Big East followed shortly after by Boise State.

Nobody looking at the Big East will think it’s stable, we all know Louisville is looking to get out and are desperate to do so.

Honestly who wants to be in a non-AQ conference with the likes of Temple, Houston, Memphis, Cincy, SMU, UCF, and USF?

Louisville and Boise State should go independent. Then, BYU, Boise St., and Louisville could schedule each other. In addition, the three could do an arrangement with the Big East similar to Notre Dame’s arrangement with the ACC – each plays four games a year against Big East teams and leverages the Big East’s ability to keep or get bowl arrangements for the Las Vegas, Poinsettia, Russell Athletic and Pinstripe Bowls.

I think the Big East is hemorrhaging. Why should the Catholic schools stick around and share their money with Houston, UCF and other no name programs.

Look for 7 non-football teams to bolt the Big East and start a new conference. They can raid the Atlantic 10 and Horizon and put together a tidy and powerful 12 team league in major markets that has nothing to do with football.

Check this league out.

Seton Hall

**Detroit (or perhaps Loyola)

That leaves some orphaned football programs. I look for the remaining Eastern teams to all fight to get into the Big 12 (Louisville gets in) and the western teams BYU Boise and SDSU to return to the MWC with hat in hand begging for re-admittance. That leaves UCF, USF, Cinci, Temple, Houston, SMU, Memphis, Army, Navy as orphans. They will form a conference out of necessity. UMass (and maybe Buffalo) will fit better here than the MAC, but still it will have zero glamour and prestige.

i like your plan…. but i think you could add st. louis and richmond too? add richmond to the east and st. louis to the west… 14 teams

St. Louis makes a lot of sense, and they would be a good fit in my group, but since Richmond is the only non-Catholic school and has a decent FCS program, I don’t see them as being as good a fit.

And Seth, Butler, Dayton and Georgetown technically have football; but unlike Villanova and Richmond,those three schools have FCS programs based on a D-3 model. They don’t offer scholarships. qualify for the FCS playoffs or even schedule FBS programs like the leading FBS schools do.

What I should have said is those schools are exceptional because basketball actually overshadows their football programs.


Cincy would be a much better program than Detroit or Dayton.

Butler, Villanova, Dayton and G-Town have football programs, be it FCS.

@BILL I look for the remaining Eastern teams to all fight to get into the Big 12 (Louisville gets in) and the western teams BYU Boise and SDSU to return to the MWC with hat in hand begging for re-admittance.

Bill, I will give you 1 out of 3.

Boise State won’t go back. What is the upside? Everyone left the conference and no exposure. Nationally they have respect, out East They are the “original” BCS busters (That actually played and beat a really good team)

BYU left the MWC to be on TV. They signed a TEN YEAR broadcasting deal with ESPN those guys have their own TV station for Heavens sake. BYU has no interest in going back. They are on National TV more than 95% of the other BCS teams country. I am out in NY and see them more on ESPN than Penn State and Ohio State!

San Diego State could go back, they have a fan base that is limited. Boise used to be on ESPN all the time, BYU has taken their spot. Would ESPN give a 5-10 year deal to SDSU? Don’t hold your breath Aztecas – SDSU could go back to The MWC!

Espn has a report, that Boise State, San Diego State and Brigham Young are talking to move to the Mountain West Conference.

Dear Lee C., the conference realignments since 2009 are all made by the treasurer of ESPN. ;-)