The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Thomas Boswell on Maryland move: ‘My gut level reaction is that it will work out badly’

I asked my son, the recent Maryland grad and big Terps sports fan, what he thought last night about switching from ACC to Big 10. He said, “Worst idea ever. But that’s just me.” Why? “We’ve always been a basketball school in a basketball conference and we usually struggle in football. So now we’re going to switch to a football conference where we’ll get killed forever? And our basketball rivalries and identity may  (deteriorate).”
That’s going to be the first reaction of a lot of Terp alums. I’ve been reading the arguments both ways for the last couple of days. I see both sides. I hate it when that happens. It’s more fun to have a violent opinion. Maryland often got the short end of the stick in a Carolina-biased conference.
My gut level reaction is that it will work out badly. Maryland has tried a million ways to be a better football school. It’s not going to happen by moving to the Big Ten (or 14).
If you eventually lose Turgeon as coach __he’s exceptional__  then you may go backwards in basketball, too.
And will the sports that got erased because of budget be brought back? If restoring those sports isn’t part of the plan, then that weakens the case.
This will be an endless debate. We’ll know if it was smart in…five years…10 years? Right now, I’m in the “lets learn more” stage. But whenever a fait accompli is presented and everything __from first news to “it’s decided”__ all happens in less than 100 hours, I’m suspicious.
If it’s such a great idea, how did it all come to pass so quickly and with so little imput from those with a long-time history with Maryland __like, for instance, its graduates?



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