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An Open Letter To John Swofford

Because now you can fix something broken

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NCAA Basketball: ACC Media Day
Oct 28, 2015; Charlotte, NC, USA; ACC commissioner John Swofford at The Ritz-Carlton.
Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports

Dear Ninja Commissioner:

Congratulations on what you accomplished with the ACC Network. It was truly remarkable and ACC fans are grateful that the conference won’t end up in the dustbin of sports history.

You Da Man!

As great as it is (people are going to study this in business school as a textbook example of how to change a weakness into a strength), there is still now an opportunity to do something important.

We’re talking about restoring traditional rivalries.

The ACC lost something when the round robin went away, but that can be partly fixed now.

Commissioner - may we call you Ninja? - Ninja, with a 20-game schedule you can let Duke, UNC, Wake Forest and State get back to home-and-home games annually.

You can also match this north and south of Tobacco Road: let Syracuse, Pitt, BC and Notre Dame schedule home-and-homes every year. Get those Big East juices flowing!

You could do it with Virginia, Virginia Tech and Louisville too. That could be a fun hotbed with the coaches we have now.

Down south you could replicate that with Clemson, Georgia Tech, Florida State and Miami.

You could give other teams a good payday by being sure that the real powers (whoever they happen to be in any particular era) visit as often as possible.

So next year Clemson might get Louisville and UNC. FSU might get Duke and Virginia. And Georgia Tech could get UNC and Syracuse.

Look, we understand that what we don’t know vastly outweighs what we actually do know. And you know far, far more than we ever will. Do we think we could have matched your slickness with ESPN? Hell no! You’re the ninja dude, not us.

But we do know some things. And we do know how much we miss the excitement of annual trips to Raleigh and Winston-Salem. It’s an ache in our ACC soul, Ninja.

We miss our ACC pals and one game a year just doesn’t cut it. They’re dying to get us back at their place and cut us down a notch. They need to hate us and to tell the truth, we need to hate them too. It’s healthy!

Right now, we’re only getting half of what we need, and like any decent junkie, not getting a fix makes us really irritable.

So please, won’t you consider this? And if you do, we promise we’ll each get at least one other person to watch these games with us. We’ll push those ESPN ratings as high as we can! We’ll even promise to watch some Olympic sports when basketball is out of season.

Just please, Ninja dude, pretty please. Can we have Big Four home-and-home back?

It’d be the ribbon on the shiny new network you got us and we’ll never forget who brought it back (that means we’ll have to overlook who got rid of it too but we’ll go there, Ninja).

ACC fans would be deeply grateful.