This is the first in a new series about Syracuse's impending move to the ACC.
Syracuse's well-documented move to the ACC (at this point, sadly a few seasons away in all likelihood) of course comes with a host of new friends to play with. While several are neither "new" nor "friends," still consider these posts your primer on which teams, schools, players and coaches you'll be hating from 2014 until the next time college football decides to realign.
First up, a team all Orange fans should still be familiar with: the Boston College Eagles.
School: Boston College
Location: Chestnut Hill, Mass.
Stadium: Alumni Stadium (capacity: 44.500) | Conte Forum (capacity: 8,606)
Football & Basketball Titles: 1* (1940, football, though no one else acknowledges this)
Notable Football Alums: Doug Flutie, Matt Ryan, Bill Romanowski, Matt Hasselbeck
Notable Basketball Alums: Jared Dudley, John Bagley, Dana Barros
Of all the teams we'll be joining in the ACC, none induces the venom of our formerly intense rivalry with Boston College. Playing 46 times (and nearly every year from 1961 through 2004) total in football, the Orange hold a commanding 28-18 lead in the series. Longtime fans will likely be able to rattle off some of the biggest games in the series right off the bat -- a 43-17 trouncing exacted by SU in 2004 that in effectively prevented BC from receiving a BCS bid. The 20-13 contests of 1997 and 2000, with each side respectively tallying a victory. And of course, the 10-0 barnburner that started it all in 1924. Alone in terms of Northeast private schools playing big-time college football, it's just always made sense for these two to play each other in what could redevelop as a storied rivalry for years to come.
In basketball, the history traces back to the beginning of the Big East conference. As former founders of the once-mighty roundball league, it's both sad and refreshing to see these two start to duke it out (no pun intended) again in the ACC. While BC's never been the powerhouse on the court that the Orange developed into, the Eagles would record two Big East titles (1997, 2001) during their tenure together. Even though Boston College has failed to really replicate any of their previous success since their conference switch-up, it's a foregone conclusion that Syracuse (and I guess Pitt, as long as DePaul doesn't become an expansion candidate) will contend immediately.
Getting back into this rivalry, we might as well make it count. So, if you see a BC fan in public, your first order of business should probably be to just mention Diamond Ferri's name. After that, feel free to discuss your team's basketball and football titles -- both of which are actually recognized by the NCAA (unlike the Eagles' 1940 "championship"). Sure, they'll probably say something snarky about hockey titles, but you've got 11 lacrosse championships to fall back on. Once they remember their team still plays at the club level, you'll win any round of smack-talk in a rout.
John Cassillo authors Atlantic Coast Convos, which chronicles ACC (Plus Syracuse & Pittsburgh) football. Check out the blog, and follow him on Twitter: @JohnCassillo