NCAAF Power Five Shuffle Continues As ACC Looks To Add Three Teams

The Pac-12 Conference has been in existence for over a century, but now it stands on the brink of dissolution as there are only four programs remaining that are committed to the 2024 NCAAF season.

Remaining Pac-12 Teams

  • California Golden Bears
  • Oregon State Beavers
  • Stanford Cardinal
  • Washington State Cougars

Pac-12 Teams Going To The Big Ten

  • Arizona Wildcats
  • UCLA Bruins
  • USC Trojans
  • Washington Huskies

Pac-12 Teams Going To The Big 12

  • Arizona State Sun Devils
  • Colorado Buffaloes
  • Oregon Ducks
  • Utah Utes

Betting on the College Football Playoffs is largely tied to the Power Five conferences. At least three spots are historically taken up by Power Five programs, and the new 12-team format beginning in 2024-25 reserves the top four sports for the highest-ranked conference winners.

Come 2024, there will likely only be four top conferences, and any grouping outside of the ACC, SEC, Big Ten, or Big 12 will be hard-pressed to earn a playoff bye week.

Following the recent plundering of the Pac-12, the ACC was considering adding Cal and Stanford, but not enough existing programs supported the move.

Notre Dame is a full-voting member of the ACC and participates in all conference sports except for football. The Fighting Irish play five regular season NCAA Football games against ACC opponents each year.

ND was initially pushing hard for Stanford and Cal to join, but talks have cooled since then. Yesterday, negotiations picked up again, this time with the SMU Mustangs being considered as a third addition.

The Mustangs currently play in the AAC (American Athletic Conference) and are eager to join a major collective of programs.

While these moves may make some financial sense to the ACC, there are geographical concerns to think about. Road games always have an impact on college football betting, and even more so when traveling across the entire country.

Cal and Stanford are in California, and SMU resides in Texas. The Louisville Cardinals are likely the closest team to California, with the Florida State Seminoles of Tallahassee as the closest in distance to Southern Methodist University.

Unrest In The ACC

Some ACC members are unhappy with the current revenue split and are poised to leave the conference unless significant changes occur – and soon. The following ACC teams have met privately regarding their future in the conference:

  • Clemson
  • Florida State
  • North Carolina
  • Miami
  • NC State
  • Virginia
  • Virginia Tech

FSU, in particular, seems eager to eject as soon as possible. The current ACC agreement runs through 2036 and carries a $120 million early exit penalty should a program decide to leave before then. Clemson has expressed similar intentions to explore other options.

The above list of seven schools also includes the four objectors to the addition of SMU, Cal, and Stanford. At the moment, Clemson, Florida State, North Carolina, and NC State are opposed to expansion, but only one of them needs to change their mind to achieve the required vote to make it happen.

The motivator is money, and money alone. Making it to the CFP National Championship Game is a possibility from any of the top conferences, so the only reason to hop to another affiliation is to increase revenue.

This decision could take a while, but moves have been made quickly in the past few weeks, so stay tuned.

Sports Illustrated