Indiana Athletics: Big 10 Announces Alignment with Pac-12, ACC

The much-awaited decision has come in college sports.

Dec 19, 2020; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; The Big 10 Conference logo is seen on the field during the first half between the Ohio State Buckeyes and the Northwestern Wildcats at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

The NCAA as we know it has officially changed forever.

SInce the news of Texas and Oklahoma not only rockiing the Big-12 world and elaving, but they are joining the almighty SEC. As a result of this, the Big 10, ACC, and Pac-12 immeidately aligned and formed a partnership for the future.

“The ACC, Big Ten, and Pac-12 today announced a historic alliance that will bring 41 world-class institutions together on a collaborative approach surrounding the future evolution of college athletics and scheduling.”

“The alliance – which was unanimously supported by the presidents, chancellors, and athletics directors at all 41 institutions – will be guided in all cases by a commitment to, and prioritization of, supporting student-athlete well-being, academic and athletic opportunities, experiences, and diverse educational programming. The three conferences are grounded in their support of broad-based athletic programs, the collegiate model, and opportunities for student-athletes as part of the educational missions of the institutions.”

This is an absolute game-breaker for college sports. The world of college athletics as it once was is officially over. Athletes are now using NIL to grow and increase their brand, historic rivalries may never be the same, and the landscape of collegiate sports won’t be as it once was.

In the official announcement, the three conferences remained committed to many things. These include but are not limited to:

  • Student-athlete mental and physical health, safety, wellness, and support
  • Strong academic experience and support
  • Diversity, equity, and inclusion
  • Social justice
  • Gender equity
  • Future structure of the NCAA
  • Federal legislative efforts
  • Postseason championships and future formats

The alliance will introduce scheduling formats for football along with women’s and men’s basketball to establish new inter-conference games, enhance opportunities for student-athletes, and optimize the college athletics experience for both student-athletes and fans across the country. The scheduling alliance will begin as possible with all contractual agreements honored.

This will be a challenge as many will want to see this happen immediately. That will not happen. This may take a few years as there is so much to work out from scheduling, new ‘rivalries formed, and TV deals are arranged. That last part may end up the trickiest.

This is still great news for the Hoosiers and Indiana University Athletics as well. This will increase their opponent competition, their national footprint will increase, and they will be exposed to new teams and opportunities.