What NCAA Conference Realignment Should Look Like

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Feb 4, 2014; Milwaukee, WI, USA; The Big East Conference logo on display during the game between the Butler Bulldogs and Marquette Golden Eagles at BMO Harris Bradley Center. Marquette won 69-62. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Big East

That’s right, let’s bring back the Big East to what it was supposed to be, not what those basketball schools decided to make it. This conference could be the Northeastern Conference, or ACC-North.

And for all you history buffs, out there, it would have fulfilled the late Joe Paterno’s dream for a conference made up of schools from the Northeast. Paterno may have had his faults, but he got this one right.

Marshall would simply be added in because you had to add an extra team, but think about the rivalries that would be created from this. Maryland, Penn State, Pitt, and West Virginia were always meant to be four-way rivals. Now, they would be competing in the same division, which would be epic. Meanwhile, you could have a battle for state supremacy in Pennsylvania among Penn State, Pitt, and Temple, along with state supremacy in West Virginia. Marshall has played well enough to earn a spot in a conference like this anyway.

In the North division, Syracuse-UCONN, UCONN-UMASS, Rutgers-Syracuse, Boston College-UMASS-UCONN, and Buffalo-Syracuse were all rivalries that were meant to be. Buffalo and UMASS would come across as the two schools that don’t belong here, but they both have the size and enough of a profile to become solid athletic colleges in a more high-profile conference, which this would be.

The formation of this conference would generate Northeastern regional pride, something that is rare in college sports, and it would affirm the status of a lot of rivalries that were meant to be but never truly came to fruition. And you could have protected inter-division rivalries to make sure Temple and Rutgers play every year as well.

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