Glass talks Big Ten expansion, addition of Maryland, Rutgers

  • 10/21/2013 10:45 am in

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Conference expansion and realignment have changed college athletics significantly.

And whether you are a fan of what has taken place or oppose the breakdown in tradition brought about by these changes, the Big Ten has been ahead of the curve.

With the conference reportedly paying out close to $26 million to each member institution in the last fiscal year, including $7.6 million from the Big Ten Network, it’s not hard to see why schools like Nebraska, Maryland and Rutgers opted to leave their respective leagues to join.

The Big Ten is distributing the most money of any conference to its members and with the growth of BTN and network TV contracts, the numbers should only continue to grow.

While the ultimate decisions on expansion are handled at the presidential level, the Indiana athletic department plays a key role in advising President Michael McRobbie.

In a conversation last week in his office that overlooks Memorial Stadium, Fred Glass spoke to Inside the Hall about IU’s role in the expansion process, the potential for future expansion and the additions of Maryland and Rutgers, who will join the league next fall.

“The athletic departments are a little like the working group,” Glass said. “They’ll sort through things and take a recommendation to the presidents and I think it’s highly unlikely that the athletic directors would agree on something that the presidents wouldn’t ultimately adopt.”

Glass was quick to point out that consensus amongst conference members is important in any discussions on expansion, which makes the role of each institution a significant one in the overall process.

“I think the view of the conference is and the view of the commissioner is, we’re not going to go that way unless there is basically a consensus view that we should do that,” he said. “We’re not going to expand on a 7-to-5 vote or I guess now it’d be a 8-to-6 vote when those two new schools come in. It’s going to be pretty much everyone thinks this is a good idea.

“So I tell you all that because I think our role is pretty significant because I think it’s certainly possible that if everyone was for it and we were against it or if everyone was for it and Minnesota was against it or if everyone was for it and Penn State was against it, it may not happen. And certainly if two or three institutions were against an expansion, I don’t think it would happen.”

There’s been little news on expansion since April, when the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) announced that its members had agreed to a grant of rights, leaving the SEC as the only major conference without such an agreement.

The lack of recent movement, however, doesn’t mean that the Big Ten or the IU athletic department have moved the issue off of the radar completely.

“That’s one of the more important things we’ve been working on is expansion. Whether we continue to expand, I don’t know. I can tell you that there’s no active efforts to identify partners to expand with,” Glass said. “But having said that, I think 16 (members) might be a bit of a sweet spot and if two high caliber academic and athletic institutions applied for membership, my guess is, if they met our criteria of being academically excellent and hopefully geographically contiguous, although I’m not sure if that’s completely critical, my guess is we’d do that.”

The Big Ten will grow by two members late next summer as Maryland arrives from the ACC and Rutgers, a former member of the Big East, arrives after a one-year stint in the American Athletic Conference (AAC).

Glass says he’s excited to welcome both schools into the conference.

“I think they’re terrific additions. They’re public research universities, they’re members of the AAU (Association of Academic Universities), they check all of the boxes on the academic side, which is really important to the presidents and it’s important to the athletic directors as well,” he said. “While they’re fairly far flung geographically, they are contiguous to our Big Ten footprint. So for us to go from the eastern seaboard to the plains or close to the mountains is a nice area to dominate, so I like that part of it, too.”

There could be benefits for Indiana basketball as well as the Hoosier staff has placed an emphasis on recruiting the east coast. Those efforts should only be strengthened by the addition of Maryland and Rutgers, which are both located in fertile recruiting ground.

“Selfishly for Indiana I think they’re great because Tom has been doing terrific recruiting that eastern corridor, Washington D.C., New York, New Jersey and for us to be out there on a regular basis and the Big Ten Network, presumably, will expand in that area, I think it will be good for our recruiting,” Glass said. “I think we’re a little bit ahead of the game because we’ve been working that area already.”

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  • Gregory Spera

    Maryland. Rutgers. I’m so excited, I CAN”T STAND IT!!! ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ…

  • E Foy McNaughton

    Schools I would have been excited to see enter the B1G (and know it never would have happened): Cincy, Louisville, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Missouri…. I could care less about Rutgers & Maryland — snore — aside from being in large TV markets, they have snore football programs, Maryland is not as strong as when Williams coached there, and they are not remotely close to B1G geographically.

  • kingoflucerne .

    You forgot Johns Hopkins. We added them for lacrosse only. I know it doesn’t fit this expansion part of this article though, but I thought getting an Ivy League-type school is pretty cool to add to Northwestern’s academic profile along with the various departments of every other school that competes at that level.

  • plane1972

    From a scheduling standpoint, I see where the apathy for Maryland and Rutgers is coming from. However, they are both fantastic additions for recruiting. Landing highly rated guys on the eastern seaboard is really tough for Indiana right
    now, but if a parent can watch their kid on TV or closer to home when
    they play in MD or NJ that is a big opening for us in recruiting. Imagine the B1G Network in New Jersey and DC when we were recruiting a guy like Kyrie Irving.

  • HoosierTrav

    Unfortunately Kyrie said he didn’t think Indiana was a place where he could develop… Boy was he WAY off.

  • HoosierTrav

    Honestly I’m not that upset about Maryland. They are a sleeping giant. Rutgers though?!?!? How in the world did that consensus even get close to being reached? The ACC turned itself into a MONSTER and we just hurt everyone in our conferences potential RPI’s with perennial losers. I get that they are decent educational institutions but let’s be honest… Do we tune into B1G games to admire how great a schools academics are? I sure as hell don’t. This will have major implications on recruiting. Going to be very tough for blue chippers to pick playing in the B1G over the ACC going forward. Sucks. I hope we can add a Kansas or UNC or both.

  • Gregory Spera

    I was born and raised in New York. What the B1G people don’t seem to understand is that the huge New York market they are all so excited about, doesn’t care at all about freaking Rutgers University. Nobody across the river gives a crap about Rutgers athletics. If it wasn’t for the scandals, Rutgers would never make any news.

  • IUDan

    I agree with you … But it doesn’t matter if people care or even watch … Just that they are cable subscribers…

  • Kenneth234

    True, however, Rutgers in the Big Ten Conference has an opportunity to make major upgrades to their athletic programs, while also enjoying the fertile recruiting grounds of the New York area. Sure they may struggle to start with in the BIg Ten, but they have opportunity to thrive being the only North Eastern Big Ten school.

  • Kenneth234

    In a perfect world, conferences should be more geographically located in order to keep travel simpler for student athletes. Along those lines, I would love to see the conference (of 16 schools) include the original 10, plus Notre Dame, Depaul, Marquette, Iowa State, Cincinnati, UK and Missouri. To me that would bring to bare all the major geographical rivalries all under one cupboard.

  • E Foy McNaughton

    The only problem with your list is that DePaul & Marquette don’t have football programs. If that isn’t a requirement, then I agree totally. I understand why they added Rutgers/Maryland, I just don’t think it is fair to the kids to make them fly all over the country during the semester on Tuesday nights, etc. Imagine the kid’s life, Big Tuesday game gets over at midnight, then assuming they come strait home, they get on the airplane at what? 3AM, get home at maybe 9AM? Or the whole next day is consumed with travel from New Jersey or Maryland back to Bloomington. Anyway, its just another example of the NCAA / large conferences saying they are concerned with the kids education and their actions showing that they are mainly concerned about the $$$ – of course they don’t share that $$$ with the kids bringing it in….. I rant sometimes….

  • N71

    I’m ok w Maryland but don’t understand Rutgers. Missouri seemed like a nice fit and brought the St. Louis and KC markets. Virginia seemed nice due to academics and location. If we add 2 more here would be my preference:

    1. Notre Dame (might be the #1 brand in college football)
    2. Missouri (geography)
    3. Virginia (furthers East Coast push)
    4. UNC (East Coast and hoops are super strong)
    5. Texas (giant like Ohio State)
    6. Oklahoma + Oklahoma St. (nice 1-2 football package)
    8. Kansas (hoops)
    9. Iowa St. (geography)
    10. Kentucky (geography + hoops)

    I’m ignoring these schools current league commitment for the moment.

  • Andrew Walker

    If no B1G team wins the tournament this year then Maryland will be the last B1G team to win the big dance. I’m not saying this to be a hater I just feel some of us are unfairly degrading what Maryland has to offer.
    Rutgers helps improve money from cable T.V. packages.

  • Earl Scheib

    I live in NYC now. You’re spot on. The only basketball program I ever hear anyone talk about here is Syracuse.

  • badger

    Best Final Two “Big Reach” Teams:
    1. New York University [UB]—Large, AAU, Contiguous, Borders Canada (Toronto & Montreal Markets), NYS and NYC covered!!!
    2. University of Texas—Large, AAU, not Contiguous but too big to ignore, and great football tradition!!

  • dtfreed

    once again, the B-ball and F-ball programs supply the money to all of the NON-revenue sports [all of the rest] so there isn’t this big pot of money even at Major Div 1 type schools. If there was, wouldn’t all the the NR sports have full scholarships for all? and who would be credited with bonus money? the starters only, or the highest scorer[s] NBA 1st rounders only? No? They already are getting there bonus, for outstanding play.. . I rant too>>>

  • yimyames

    The ACC turned itself into a MONSTER

    I just hope UK doesn’t end up in the ACC with Nc and Duke. I have thought for years it would be a perfect fit for UK in BB and FB. If that would happen, I believe every other program may become irrelevant in the eyes of the media and general public.

  • SCHoosier

    I think you will awake form your snooze when you see the kind of b-ball team the new coach puts out in a couple of years.

  • Ole Man

    As an ex-New Yorker, I can tell you that no one outside of Jersey gives a darn for or watches Rutgers.
    Maryland, I reluctantly understand.
    Rutgers just doesn’t make any sense to me.
    Their one good basketball team in their history was the undefeated team during regular season ’76.
    They got to Philly for the Final Four, where MI beat them. IU of course beat UCLA, and the rest became history.
    Bought my seat for the final from a disgruntled Rutgers student during the between games intermission. She had to be back in class on Monday.
    Face value!

  • Ole Man

    I like the UT thought. Out of the box!

  • Ole Man

    No one will leave the ACC. They’ve locked them up with a “too steep to pay” if you leave law.
    But I agree, ND would have been a great fit.

  • plane1972

    I guess he’ll see it up close and personal when the Cavs meet the Magic this season. Would love to see Vic rise up on him.

  • plane1972

    You obviously don’t hang out in Queens. All they talk about at My-T-Sharp is St. John’s.

    “He was badda’n Cassius Clay. He was badda’n Sugar Ray. And he was badd’n that new boy…what’s his name? Mike Tyson. Look like a bulldog.”

  • Andrew Walker

    I forgot to put a question mark at the end of the Rutgers comment.
    It’s too bad the B1G inherited a school the Northeast doesn’t care about.
    Hey, at least we know we can purchase IU game tickets from Rutgers’ fans at face value.

  • aHoopandaPrayer

    The motivation for this decision was money. The decision makers must believe that the expanded B1G Channel market access will provide more Revenue than what the institutions (Maryland & Rutgers) bring on their own. I sincerely hope that the distribution of proceeds exceeds $26M per member institution after the acquisitions are complete. Otherwise, we’ve diluted our value, increased transportation challenges for fans and athletes, and lost continuity.

  • Ole Man

    I thought I read somewhere that UConn was almost begging to get in the B1G. Maybe it has something to do with academics; which supposedly UConn is fixing.
    I like the idea. Think they would be a good fit.

  • hoosier1158

    Personally I don’t like all the additions and the “super” conferences. I would prefer to have 10 “regional” teams in a conference. I don’t think you have a true regular session champion unless everyone plays home and away.

  • jaywiz

    Louisville and cincy have awful academics. I would like to see Kentucky. they fit the b1g mold more than sec. Barnhart was always bringing up not having enough revenue. join the big ten and that problems solved. plus we would be forcing them to play us on campus. stick it to em.

  • MisterSlippery

    You have sent me into a state of depression.

  • ledies22

    geographically… that is the point, to extend the B1G market to the eastern coast.

  • Snookafly

    I’d love to see them in the ACC. I think it would bring down UK’s program in terms of tougher recruiting and scheduling. Right now UK is basically king of the SEC in bb every year (like Kansas in the Big-whatever-they-are-now), but that wouldn’t last in the ACC.

  • Purdue Stinks

    They already met in the preseason and honestly Victor was better than Kyrie, which makes me happy.

  • Steve Fischer

    NO – The Big Ten needs to keep its academic integrity. Allowing Cincy, Louisville or Oklahoma would be bad news.

  • badger

    I say go to 16 and stop. UT makes a lot of sense, would fortify a perceived weaker West division. With NYU the league gets max reach and achieves a nice balance of power schools in each division, mixed with good overall athletic programs throughout. Large state schools, high academics and research, and quality athletic programs would continue to define the Big Ten.

  • Ole Man

    Does NYU have a D1 basketball team–not just in name?

  • badger

    They’re not bad…about like their football team, often finishing in the middle or top half of their conference.They are positioned for basketball and football to go to the Big Ten. Their basketball facilities are nice tho small. It would not take much to expand these. They have access to Ralph Wilson Stadium (Bills) for football. Their campus stadium in Amherst would need some improvements. A switch to the Big Ten would easily give $$$ to do this. Btw, Duke great Bobby Hurley now coaches their basketball team.’UB’ is a large school and recognized as NYS flagship oollege..public university with 30,000 students, plus high academics.

  • badger

    One thing Delany needs to consider in his drive to expand is the image he wishes to maintain for the conference. He stirred up a hornets nest in cherry picking Maryland from the ACC. And Maryland was the least satisfied ACC school. To try to go further and get Virginia or Carolina would cause much further resentment to him and the Big Ten. Picking New York University would not create any of this negative response and,geographically, round off the eastern flank of the Great Lakes. To me, it is far and away the best eastern choice, though not on the surface an immediate impact addition. It would be somewhat like the Rutgers addition. A lot more eyeballs for the BTN from the nation’s 3rd largest state.

  • plane1972

    Not sure how resentment is an issue. There are no rules of engagement any longer when it comes to conference realignment. Delany is already the smartest guy in the room most of the time. UNC and/or Virginia would be perfect additions to the conference’s current vision. Don’t see it happening, but would love it.

  • plane1972

    It has nothing to do with their athletic history. Rutgers is a big state school with fine academic credentials. They have a big alumni base that will want to watch football games on TV from California. Then Tom Crean and Kevin Wilson can make their way into Newark, Jersey City and NYC with a real pitch to come to the B1G. Pretty sound idea, imo.

  • N71

    Intriguing…to be honest I had to Google New York University (thinking NY City) and then bumbled onto University at Buffalo. Rutgers I had at least heard of, University at Buffalo…ah…I had not, at least that I can remember. That doesn’t mean your idea isn’t good, could be brilliant in fact, but I like the Texas idea better at this point.

  • Ole Man

    I’ve been to Binghamton. Don’t see how that would be a great addition to the conference. And they only have a little over 12k enrollment.
    That is the NYU-B you keep referring to, isn’t it?
    BTW, I think they prefer the title University of New York at Binghamton.

  • a2sk

    Just to clarify – New York University (NYU) is a large private university located in Manhattan that plays Division 3 hoops and doesn’t play football at all. The school you are referring to is the State University of New York at Buffalo, which now refers to itself as the University at Buffalo, or UB. Calling it New York University is akin to calling Indiana University the “University of Indiana”.

  • badger

    ‘a2sk’, thanks for the clarification.

  • badger

    My apologies for the misunderstanding here. The current name they are using at UB is the State University of New York at Buffalo. This name is a recent rebrand, and their eventual goal is to call it NYSU and/or, simply (if allowed…I am aware of the conflict with the NYC college), be identified as NYU or UNY. Bottom line, school officials want a nationally identified state school, such as tOSU or UM is identified in their states.

  • badger

    In my opinion, one of the next two expansion teams needs to be a home run pick, like aforementioned UT…or ND. I would personally be happy with a team like Mizzou; as regionalism, conference identity, and travel concerns trumps shear athletic strength. If the Big Ten were not already a strong overall athletic conference, I would not be happy with such “lesser” picks. But it seems the naysayers are demanding a grade “A” football selection for one of the final slots in Big Ten expansion. Anything short of a UT, Oklahoma, ND will come as a disappointment.

  • marcusgresham

    Both Rutgers and Maryland are near major airports and the flight isn’t that far. It’s nearly as long of a bus ride from Indianapolis back to Bloomington as it is to fly from Baltimore to Indy (my daughter just flew from Louisville to Baltimore for her 8th grade trip and it was only an hour or an hour and a half,) so it’ not really that big of a deal.

  • marcusgresham

    UK won’t go to the ACC. 1.) They like being the big dog in basketball in the SEC; in the ACC they’d have stiff competition every season. 2.) They’d never joing a conference with Louisville.

  • marcusgresham

    Texas doesn’t want to join the B1G and have to share TV rights when it already has the Longhorn Network raking in cash.

  • marcusgresham

    I think he was joking about NYU–if they even have athletics they aren’t D-1.

  • marcusgresham

    My bad on what I said earlier—I wasn’t aware of this.