It seems the ACC is over the Big Ten. Instead of whupping on the hapless Midwesterners like they do every year, the ACC is seemingly looking toward the Big East as their next target.
The idea of the battle between ACC vs. Big East got it's first big publicity during the lead-up to the Duke-Georgetown game, a matchup of two of the conference's premier teams. Coach K had been hyping the meeting all week long, and, wouldn't you know it, the Dukies came through. Duke came out on top (thanks in no small part to some help from the refs), and there was no lack of postgame questions regarding the budding rivalry.
It just seems that people always are talking about the Big East. I think it's been more of a surface-level look at things instead of an in-depth look, and I think when you take an in-depth look, our league is the toughest league. I don't think there's any question about it.
This was prefaced by his comments on Wednesday after the Georgia Tech game:
We've got four teams in the Top 10. We just played Tech and Florida State, and they could play anybody we've played. … Our league is the best league.
The Big East has countered with comments about depth - the Big East has 8 teams in the Top 25 - instead of top-heaviness. It's certainly an interesting debate, and as a blogger for an ACC team, I figured I should probably weigh in in some extent.
As hard is it is to root for Duke, I found myself doing it. It was made slightly easier by the fact they were playing Georgetown, but it's still something I hope to never have to do again. If they lost, everyone in the conference would have to answer for them - luckily, they didn't.
I don't really think the whole conference argument thing really matters outside of bragging rights. At least, I don't think it should. But if someone on the selection committee does, then they better think the ACC is better.
I understand the thing about the Big East having 8 teams in the top 25, and I get that it's a big deal. But there's 16 teams in the Big East! If anyone would do it, I'd hope it's them. The ACC does need two more teams to catch up to the Big East in terms of ratio, but they have a huge advantage in where the teams are actually ranked.
But that's all subjective. Look at the numbers, instead: ACC has a 9-6 H2H advantage; ACC has a better RPI (.595 to .585); the ACC has a better record against non-conference opponents (27-18 vs 21-20). I don't even know why there's a debate about this, really. Both conferences are great, and it's kind of pointless, but it's kind of obvious that the ACC is slightly better. Not by a lot, but there's an advantage there.
Now the rant is over and I'll go back to covering the Maryland Terrapins.