Most likely you will enjoy some of the parts of the “diatribe”. Frankly, it really wasn’t just a state of the league speech. Truthfully, you’ll compare it more to an Adam Silver “state of the game” speech. He was talking about how 10 years ago no one thought this league would do what it’s done. He talked about how no one thought a team (Cincinatti) from a non-power-5 league would elbow their way into the final four. How UCF would become folk heroes (my words, not his) for having gone undefeated and having legitimate mention for national champions years earlier. His words had wisdom, but he really brought out that old man strength.
American Athletic Conference Commissioner Mike Aresco begins his state of the Conference and state of college football address.
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— The American (@American_Conf) July 28, 2022
Towards the end of the speech he did mention some of the teams that were staying. The Commissioner talked about how Memphis had competed at a high level, and how many New Years Bowl (5 years out of 7) that the AAC had competed in. The teams were Memphis in the Cotton Bowl, and also Cincinatti, UCF, and Houston. (Those three of course are leaving).
From a non-football standpoint Aresco mentioned the realignment affected all college sports, and Olympic sports as well.
These sports are mainly non-money earning. This was mentioned, and also the fact that football drives the conference choice…. and that it is not considered that all the rest of the sports therefore follow.
You should temper a “total buy-in” on the speech. Though the AAC may have lost a lot, they still have pride. He mentioned continuing “upward trajectory”. I don’t think even a true AAC fan can think of this as a totally realistic expectation.
But on the very truthful side, he mentioned that people do not want three-quarters of the FBS teams not having a true opportunity for the national championship. Probably this resonates with college football fans more than anything he said. Even though an Alabama or an Ohio State wants another national championship, they don’t want a UCF or a BYU (from the 80s) claiming a national title because Georgia or Clemson “ducked” them. (Which is laughable anyway).
A famous philosopher said, Remember, if you don’t have nothing, you got nothin’ to lose (so the speech is worth a listen).
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