In order to make the ACC Network a reality, the league had to agree to ESPN’s demands for scheduling changes in both men’s basketball and football. Men’s hoops is moving from an 18-game conference schedule to a 20-game schedule once the network is up and running. The future of the football schedule has not been determined, as the Daily Press’ David Teel explains.
The league has two options: either go to a nine-game league schedule, or keep the eight-game schedule and require every school to play two non-conference power-five opponents each year. Either way, each ACC school will be playing 10 regular season games against power-five teams.
That’s to the ACC Network and ESPN’s advantage since it creates higher quality inventory.
It seems like a switch to nine league games would be the most practical solution, since it would allow teams to rotate through opponents in the opposite division more quickly. It also removes the burden of having to find two non-conference power fives every year, and honestly that seems like a nearly impossible task to execute in reality. Sounds nice on paper, though.