Saturday, November 24, 2012

Realigning Our Thinking

If you’ve ever visited a chiropractor, you know that realignment can be a painful experience. However, once it’s over, and though you may still hurt, hopefully the visit is the start of feeling better . . . at least with time. And that’s kind of how the BCs are now looking at this “B1G” conference realignment. Painful, but a new beginning.

For us, Maryland basketball and the ACC have always been inseparable. The huge crowds that fill Comcast for the “big” ACC match-ups, the annual wrestling among ACC coaches to land the region’s prize recruits, the intense (and sometimes very funny [but very raunchy and definitely not PC]) mutual “hatred” among fans, and the diversion of the Red Sea to the Greensboro Coliseum every March. It’s hard to imagine that, two years from now, some of those things will simply be memories. As Dr. Loh acknowledged, there’s a “sense of sadness” among many alumni and Terps fans. He’s absolutely right. The BCs feel it, and we’re relatively new to Terps Nation. No doubt, many alums and other fans are very deeply disappointed -- and sad -- right now as well.
But like it or not (mostly not), what’s done is done and there’s no going back to the “good old ACC days.” So that leaves the BCs with only two choices – give up Maryland basketball, or move forward and begin the process of realigning our thinking. That’s an easy choice – we pick door #2!

It goes without saying that when this weird two-year transition period is over, we’re going to miss the ACC. Very much so. But meanwhile, as this transition period plays itself out, we’re going to be cheering for the Terps in the ACC, while following the action (on BTN!) in the B1G, Maryland’s future conference. We need to prepare. Once the Terps (and, as of yesterday, Rutgers too) enter the B1G, change will be inevitable. (And it may well be, as things play out down the line, that Maryland and the Scarlet Knights won’t be the only teams feeling some seismic shift.)

The BCs may have referred to the B1G as a corn-fed conference. But that’s not a negative . . . the BCs love corn! As far as we’re concerned, there’s nothing that improves a Chipotle burrito bowl more than a generous helping of corn salsa. We’re thinking that Maryland and Rutgers will be the East Coast salsa that adds a little spice to an already very good Midwestern conference. We think the B1G teams are going to love how these two women’s basketball teams (one a National Champion and the other a National Championship runner-up) help raise the profile of their conference practically overnight.

What the BCs foresee is the overall strength of the conference growing. We foresee that all teams, not just Maryland, will extend the circumference of their core recruiting regions. We can also foresee possible changes in how the game is played in the B1G. (With the entry of a defensive powerhouse like Rutgers and a traditionally high-powered offensive team like the Terps, how can the B1G game not change?) These are all positives.

And another huge positive – if the BCs ever make it out to a game at Ohio State, we already have a great place to eat dinner in Columbus – Plank’s Cafe!

Yes, it’s going to be different. Yes, it’s going to take getting used to. And, yes, it's going to be somewhat painful. But we think this upcoming realignment will present many interesting opportunities. Just think about this: how often are you in on the ground floor of creating a new rivalry? Or having a new rivalry choose you? Someday, perhaps, a Maryland fan will post a video on YouTube called “This is why [fill in team name here] sucks” . . . and the name of that team won’t be Duke, it will be a member of the B1G conference. When that day comes, Maryland and its new conference will truly be aligned. We hope that day comes sooner rather than later.

(re-published from November 21)


At 4:31 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It may not be a done deal because the entire process might not meet Maryland's open meeting law, I think it's called. One of the columnists for the Post likened this deal to the moving vans pulling up in the dead of night and spiriting the Baltimore Colts away! If this state university moves to the Big Ten, I want to get all my Maryland taxes that support the school, back!

Anyway, money seems to do all the talking these days. Pay the athletes since this move is only about money, it means they really are employees!


Post a Comment

<< Home