Saturday, September 17, 2011

Matt Tait’s football notebook: Source says ACC expansion could include KU, Texas

Kansas running back Darrian Miller scores against Georgia Tech on Saturday, Sept. 17, 2011 in Atlanta.

Kansas running back Darrian Miller scores against Georgia Tech on Saturday, Sept. 17, 2011 in Atlanta.


Podcast episode

Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

KU coach Turner Gill

Kansas coach Turner Gill talks to reporters following the Jayhawks' 66-24 loss to Georgia Tech on Sept. 17, 2011, in Atlanta.

Download podcast

Podcast episode

Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

KU defensive coordinator: 'What happened today is on Vic Shealy'

Kansas defensive coordinator Vic Shealy took responsibility for the defensive performance in his team's 66-24 loss to Georgia Tech on Sept. 17, 2011.

Download podcast

— A source within the ACC told the Journal-World on Saturday morning that the league could announce the addition of Big East schools Pittsburgh and Syracuse as early as today, a move that likely would set off widespread movement in conference realignment.

If it happens, it remains to be seen how the shift would impact Kansas University, though the source said the talk in ACC country is that the league has targeted Texas and KU as its ideal 15th and 16th members.

Before coming to Kansas, chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little worked as the provost at North Carolina and is said to have serious ties throughout the ACC. What’s more, sources have said throughout the past few weeks that Gray-Little has been in the thick of the realignment talk since it began.

Should the Jayhawks head to the ACC, a power-packed basketball conference that already includes bluebloods Duke and North Carolina, another source told the Journal-World at halftime of Saturday’s 66-24 blowout by Georgia Tech that the league would consider dividing into four-team pods instead of eight-team divisions to make the travel less taxing.

Late Saturday, several administrators within the Big East and ACC had begun talking about the Syracuse and Pitt moves as mere formalities.

If that’s the case, the focus will shift to how the Pac-12, Big Ten and SEC will react and, of course, what’s to become of the Big 12.

Miller the lone bright spot

While the final score might lead some to believe Saturday’s game was ugly from start to finish, that wasn’t the case.

After falling behind 7-0 and 14-7, the Jayhawks tied the game on short touchdown runs by true freshman Darrian Miller, who finished with 53 yards and two touchdowns on 11 carries.

“That’s one guy that I could say stood out,” KU coach Turner Gill said of Miller. “He had some really good runs, has good feet, ran through tackles and was not gonna be stopped as far as getting into the end zone. I think Darrian Miller definitely gave us a spark.”

Surprise, surprise

While the Jayhawks prepared for dozens of different looks in Georgia Tech’s triple option offense, Gill said the Yellow Jackets ran a couple of plays that the Jayhawks had not seen on film.

One of them was the counter play that went for 95 yards and a touchdown on Tech’s first offensive play of the game. The other was the belly option play, which Gill said was the one play the Yellow Jackets ran consistently that gave his team the most fits.

A few KU defenders helped explain why.

“It was just miscues,” McDougald said. “I wouldn’t say they were going after the same guy or anything like that. The option is so hard to defend when you run it to perfection as they do.”

Added sophomore cornerback Tyler Patmon: “Some people weren’t reading their keys and some people weren’t making plays, and if you don’t make the plays that’s a type of offense that’s gonna go for 60.”

This and that ...

For the third game in a row, the Jayhawks won Saturday’s opening coin toss and elected to receive ... Temperature at kickoff was 63 degrees, under sunny skies with winds of 7-10 mph out of the east ... Red-shirt freshman Andrew Turzilli’s touchdown catch with 2:24 remaining in Saturday’s game was the first reception of his career ... True freshman Marquis Jackson had the first two receptions of his career, the first going for 15 yards.


kureader 8 years, 4 months ago

Matt, in a pod arrangement, how would KU be paired?

jgkojak 8 years, 4 months ago

I think we're missing a big piece to this ACC/Pitt piece.

Syracuse was always destined for the ACC- they wanted them originally when they went to 12 but were turned down. Since Syracuse has lost its AAU status - its not going to the B10.

It was always assumes that teams #13-16 in the B10 were going to be Notre Dame, Rutgers, Pitt and either a poached Maryland or Mizzou.

Now that the ACC has raised its buy-out cost to $20 million and is adding 2 solid academic/athletic (especially in basketball) schools, I think its unlikely anyone leaves the ACC.

If the B10 wants to get to 16, where does it go?

There are few AAU options left. None that aren't in the ACC or Big East except Rutgers.

To the west, there are 3: Iowa State, Kansas and Mizzou.

You'd have to think Mizzou is a no-brainer.

But that 16th team.... Iowa will not allow Iowa State.

Nebraska would love to have Kansas (as would Mizzou).

We're also missing the piece where to get Notre Dame to join, the B10 is gonna have to dangle an expansion offer to a non-ND 16th team, before they'll join.

I'm saying it may be sooner rather than later we hear an offer for MU and KU to join the B10.

danmoore 8 years, 4 months ago

I suppose the Big 10 would be a good fit. We have a mediocre football program and as football conferences go, Big 10 is the definition of mediocrity.

cabellye 8 years, 4 months ago

AAU status is not such a big thing to the B10 anymore. Notre Dame isn't in the AAU, nor is Nebraska. B10 will not add any teams just to get to 16. They will only add teams that provide a significant add to their conference. Mizzou, Kansas, Iowa State, Rutgers, and Pitt don't do that. The only team that brings that add is Notre Dame. The B10 will stay at 12.

ACC, however, will go to 16. If they can get Texas then KU is a great add for them to give them someone along with UT. However, that's not happening. ACC needs to consolidate in the northeast to try to get the NYC market. Also they need to have the rivalries. The best way to add that is UConn and WVU. However, I believe that WVU is #14 to the SEC. That leaves UConn and Rutgers. This will give the B10 a convenient excuse to NOT expand. B10 will stay at 12.

What if the SEC goes to 16? Pac-12 will have already gone to 16 with OU, OSU, UT, and TTU in this case. Who does the SEC have left? Mizzou doesn't fit the culture, but would be decent. KU has KSU as a tagalong, and still doesn't fit the culture. That means FSU and Clemson/VTech/Mizzou. In that case the ACC would probably get back to 16. I don't know what they would do then. At that point there aren't any obvious answers.

cabellye 8 years, 4 months ago

There's one other problem with B10 getting Notre Dame: Rivalries. Notre Dame would have to be desperate to give up their independent status, and even then B10 would have to provide enough rivalries to make it palatable for Notre Dame to join. Here's how they would do that: add BC, Syracuse, and Pitt. That gives ND 5 current rivalries in the B10. Then switch out the Stanford Shillelagh for the old Northwestern Shillelagh and you have 6. ND would continue to play USC and Navy every year, and would have only 1 game each year that's not a rivalry or a B10 game. Here's how the divisions would look:

Minnesota -------- Wisconsin Michigan ---------- Ohio State Northwestern ---- Illinois Notre Dame ------ Purdue Michigan State - Indiana Nebraska --------- Iowa Boston College - Penn State Pittsburgh -------- Syracuse

This is the closest you get to balance in this B10. This also gives the B10 the NYC market thanks largely to Notre Dame. The only way this happens is if the B10 is willing to pay $60 million in exit fees for 3 ACC universities once Syracuse and Pitt finalize their joining the ACC. This is after Notre Dame sees the non-football schools in the Big East disband because of the football schools leaving. I don't see either of those things happening.

miseryh8r 8 years, 4 months ago

I pray that the big 10 comes calling....that's the only scenario outside of the big 12 staying put that doesn't make me cringe....I would hate to see our rivalry with AG state gone but being in the Midwest is our best fit....and a perfect fit for our basketball program

miseryh8r 8 years, 4 months ago

I pray that the big 10 comes calling....that's the only scenario outside of the big 12 staying put that doesn't make me cringe....I would hate to see our rivalry with AG state gone but being in the Midwest is our best fit....and a perfect fit for our basketball program

squawkhawk 8 years, 4 months ago

Keep wishing...The Big 10 wants no part of KU and the ACC gave KU a look of things to come if that would be their reality. Just sayin'.

Ludwig Supraphonic 8 years, 4 months ago

Keep wishing you were a Jayhawk but at least you can hang out here.

jaymar74 8 years, 4 months ago

KU beat the ACC in the Orange Bowl and last year in Lawrence. Just sayin'.

Bob Zielinski 8 years, 4 months ago

Yeah, the ACC is such a powerhouse in football except they are missing Texas, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas A&M and Missouri. Do you really think North Carolina, Georgia Tech, etc are better?

Florida State is back in business it appears but Oklahoma just showed them the reality of Big XII versus ACC powerhouse teams, right?

Andy Hess 8 years, 4 months ago

If his touchdown catch was his first career reception, how do you account for his previous two catches earlier in the drive? Those not count or something?

Kyle Sybesma 8 years, 4 months ago

My biggest question is how would the Long Horn Network fit in with the ACC? If Texas is unwilling to give it up and not join the ACC does that affect KU's appeal? Bottom line is that this looks great on the surface but still has a lot of questions to be resolved. Could Texas screw us again?

haydenhawkco 8 years, 4 months ago

It's funny that K-State had a post about conf realignment and they had 3 comments. It's almost as if the fans don't know what is going on around them.

Lance Hobson 8 years, 4 months ago

Anyone know why Victor Ortiz was wearing the Jayhawk and "Kansas" on his trunks in tonight's fight?

texashawk10 8 years, 4 months ago

He's from Garden City and a die-hard Jayhawk fan.

danmoore 8 years, 4 months ago

Have been praying for Pac 10 but the scenario described above with the ACC would be sweet. According to ESPN 8 other schools have contacted ACC so there is plenty of competition. Would imagine some of those schools are from the Big East which would make for a better geographic fit than KU and UT.

championhawks 8 years, 4 months ago

Ortiz is from Kansas and has always been a big KU fan. Recently KU has been allowing him to wear the Jayhawk on his trunks.

It's too bad cheap money sucker punched him. I know Vicious headbutt him, but come on you don't punch someone out of an apology embrace!

jhox 8 years, 4 months ago

ESPN was reporting this morning that UCONN and Rutgers were possible targets of the ACC. No mention at all of KU or Texas.

FreeRider 8 years, 4 months ago

ACC = Solidifies East Coast B1G = Satisfied at 12 and no school obviously needed SEC = Adds WVa and maybe done at 14 Pac = Adds OU, OSU, UT, TT

Only 16-school conferences are Pac and ACC; B1G remains at 12 and SEC probably stops at 14. Conferences keep long-standing tradition of thinning out top division members — this time, moving from 65 (?) BCS schools to 59 schools (above plus Notre Dame).

Most screwed = Mizzou and, to lesser extent, KU, Baylor and K-State.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.