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ACC Network appears on track, but there’s plenty more to consider

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We’re a month out from launch, and all we want to know is what time Boeheim’s show (that he should have) is on.

NCAA Basketball: ACC Operation Basketball Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

As is always the case with the ACC, the league’s cable network has largely operated in the shadows. From its inception (an announcement seemingly out of nowhere in 2016), to its growing carrier list and programming, we don’t hear much about it until we’re presented with the information.

Now, with a month left until the network’s live, the mystery will soon be over. On the Athletic, David Glenn provides an extensive look at what’s already locked in, which carriers are critical to a successful launch and where the ACC stands in terms of both pick-up from previous conference networks and revenues compared to their FBS counterparts. The long-and-short: A lot of carriers have already signed on, but plenty more haven’t yet. That’s also normal for this sort of thing, much to your relief.

What we still don’t have a ton of are notes around programming, however, which would certainly help drive the fan push to have the network at launch (a push currently being taken on by coaches around the league, including Jim Boeheim). We obviously know some big games and documentaries, but that’s really about it. We’ve talked about how the ACC has to focus on unique programming instead of overflow to work — as does every content provider today. Hopefully that means we’re getting a Jim Boeheim food/travel show (#PartsUnzoned), but at the very least, would think there’s a great push for original and localized content for each school that makes them feel “part of it.”

That last part is key, since the ACC continues to struggle a little with a cohesive conference structure at 15 members. Granted, its recent additions — Syracuse, Pitt, Louisville, Notre Dame — are better fits than most of the realignment era. But with the way football scheduling works and how massive the league is in terms of geographic footprint, it’s tough to get rid of the “us” and “them” feelings completely. Especially when considering that seven of the 15 teams are Big East transplants at this point.

Is the network launch what does serves as a true uniting force for teams and fans alike? I’m hoping so, though on-field success for the likes of Syracuse and other “newcomers” also may make up the difference just as well.

That, plus the rest of your Syracuse-related links below:

About one month before its long-awaited launch, ACC Network is the focus of huge questions, big money (The Athletic)

“You always want distribution to be as high as possible at launch, of course, but you also want to do things right for the long run,” Babcock said. “We understand that it could take two or three years to get close to what we would consider full distribution. In either case, our numbers at launch are going to be fantastic.”

The Top 100 Players of the 2019 College Football Season (Sports Illustrated)

43. Syracuse S Andre Cisco: Cisco had one of the best seasons of any true freshman in college football last year. Using his length, instincts and ability to quickly drive toward the ball, he intercepted seven passes from the safety spot in 2018, which helped him garner first team All-ACC honors.

Why Jerami Grant Was the One of the Best Acquisitions of the NBA Offseason (The Ringer)

Grant isn’t a stopper, but he’s a container; he makes life hard on go-to scoring opponents like he does above against Kawhi. He’s the rare player who could ably defend the stars on either Los Angeles team—the Clippers’ duo of Kawhi and Paul George, or the Lakers’ pair of AD and LeBron.

Top 5 ACC Quarterbacks, 2019: Trevor Lawrence, Bryce Perkins headline the group (ACC Sports Journal)

A prized 4-star recruit in Syracuse’s 2017 class, DeVito got on the field in 2018 due to injuries with Dungey, and also because the coaching staff thought he gave them a better chance to win — like the comeback victory over UNC. DeVito doesn’t offer the same run/pass versatility of Dungey, but he’s capable of making all kinds of throws and getting the ball down the field.

Your guide to 13 early-season college basketball tournaments (ESPN)

Something for the college hoops junkies: This tournament is about three weeks into the 2019-20 season, which means Boeheim’s frustration with officiating will already be at Level 8 on a scale of 1-10. We’re sure he’ll let the referees at this event know how he feels.

Class of 2021 star Terrence Clark may reclass to 2020, feeling Penny Hardaway’s recruiting approach (ZagsBlog)

Syracuse in movies, TV shows: How many do you recognize? (Syracuse.com)

Former Syracuse football RB recruit Robert Washington joins Liberty (Syracuse.com)

Former Syracuse player Oshae Brissett produces big game in final NBA summer league outing (Syracuse.com)