While the ACC’s football coaches are focused on the typical esoterica of their sport this week at the conference’s annual meetings – recruiting calendars and headset rules – their men’s basketball counterparts were dealing with nothing less than the future of their sport, although not exactly by choice.
The ongoing FBI investigation into college-basketball corruption and the resulting NCAA commission led by Condoleezza Rice has had an indelible impact on the basketball conversation this week, forcing coaches and administrators to confront issues that had been ignored or avoided for years while wrangling with the Rice Commission’s recommendations and debating the direction of the sport going forward.
As the ACC wrangles with the circumstances that launched the Rice Commission and discusses its conclusions, it’s impossible to ignore how the debate within the sport has changed – and how quickly more changes are coming. The Rice report is barely three weeks old, and the NCAA Board of Governors is expecting to have legislation in front of it when it meets on Aug. 8. That freights the discussion this week with pragmatic weight it might not normally have.