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The ACC/ESPN TV Deal: What It Means To Syracuse

CINCINNATI - OCTOBER 30:  Ryan Nassib #12 of the Syracuse Orange celebrates a touchdown the Big East Conference game against the Cincinnati Bearcats at Nippert Stadium on October 30 2010 in Cincinnati Ohio.  (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
CINCINNATI - OCTOBER 30: Ryan Nassib #12 of the Syracuse Orange celebrates a touchdown the Big East Conference game against the Cincinnati Bearcats at Nippert Stadium on October 30 2010 in Cincinnati Ohio. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
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Some ACC schools (read: Florida St.) aren't too thrilled with the new ACC & ESPN TV deal. However, as far as Syracuse Orange fans should be concerned, it's a solid, albeit not perfect, deal. Here's why...

We's Gettin' Paid! - Syracuse made $7.5M from the most recent Big East TV deal with ESPN. Under this new ACC deal, Syracuse will make roughly $16M. ($17M per school, though the ACC home office gets its own fair share that's deducted from everyone's total). There are some who can complain about whether or not this deal gets them as much money as Big 12 schools or SEC schools but Syracuse isn't one of them. We came for the stability money and now we're getting the money.

Goodbye SNY/MSG/MASN - While most Syracuse basketball games made their way onto national television, trying to find Syracuse football on a national station has been a hassle for a while. That's why it's always been good that an SNY or MSG Network could swoop in and grab a game here and there.

For better or worse, those days are over. The ACC deal include third-tier rights, which is usually the leftover stuff that ESPN doesn't care about (The Stony Brook football game, for example). Well now they do want it, which means the amount of Syracuse football games on is probably about to go up. Oh goody.

The good news is, it probably also means more SU basketball, football and lacrosse on actual ESPN stations and not made-up Internet ones that drop out every fifteen seconds. So, you take the good with the bad.

As for what this means for Time Warner Cable locally, I'm not sure. I'm guessing that ESPN will still need a local affiliate for ESPN Game Plan games that don't quite cut the mustard for national broadcasts.

Friday Night Dome Lights - A lot has been made in some circles about Friday Night football. And I get it. I'm not a big fan of having too many games played on weeknights when some fans can't make it. But...I understand it. Especially since I don't really think too many Syracuse fans are concerned with missing high school football.

Per the extension, ESPN has the right to televise three Friday ACC football contests annually which will include a standing commitment from Boston College and Syracuse to each host one game as well as an afternoon or evening game on Thanksgiving Friday.

As BC Interruption points out, if you read that carefully, it means that both SU and BC have committed, but are not contractually obligated to each host at least one Friday night home game per year beyond the Black Friday Bowl. In other words, expect Syracuse to play at least two Friday night games a season, and that's just in conference play.

The deal also calls for Thursday night games as well, so keep an eye on that.

A Tradition Unlike Any Other...Which Might Be For The Best - I'm still surprised to have seen, of all games, the Syracuse vs. Boston College annual game, get called out in the second paragraph of the release. Clearly the conference is hoping to turn their new Northeastern rivalry into some kind of tradition, which must sound awful to everyone outside of both fanbases.

That said, I love it. I've missed the days of having a locked-in opponent to end the season with. I remember when, no matter what, we always played Miami on Thanksgiving Weekend. And now, we can actually win the game!

Syracuse Basketball Goes National - I know all of the focus is on football but it would be unwise to overlook the basketball value. What we lose in Big Monday we gain in "the most comprehensive coverage of regular-season games and the entire conference tournament produced and distributed via ESPN." As much as SU has been getting a lot of national attention recently, expect that to increase even more.

Expect to see more SU games on the mothership and not just ESPN2 or ESPNU (especially annuals with North Carolina and Duke) as well.

ACC Lax 4 Eva - This season withstanding, Syracuse brings a crapton of value to ACC lacrosse and therefore ESPN's coverage of ACC lacrosse. You know how you always turn on ESPNU to see if their broadcasting the Syracuse game and instead they've got on, like Johns Hopkins vs. Navy? Methinks those days are numbered...

Did I miss anything?