Tom Davis was a graduate assistant, freshman coach and varsity assistant for Maryland’s basketball program in the late 1960s while earning his Ph.D.
He never dreamed he’d see the day when that school joined forces with the Big Ten Conference.
“Back then, the ACC was it in basketball,” said Davis, who later coached 13 seasons at Iowa. “But everything has changed with TV. When you look at it today, it does make sense.”
The Atlantic Coast Conference has always held the mantel for college basketball, much like the Southeastern Conference for football. Maryland’s move only strengthens the Big Ten’s move to become the new king of hoops.
There are whispers that North Carolina — Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany’s alma mater — and Georgia Tech could be leaving the ACC for the Big Ten in the future
. If that happens, college basketball will forever be changed.
Duke and North Carolina have traditionally been the ACC’s heavy hitters in hoops. But Maryland’s resume is rich with all-Americans like Tom McMillen, Len Elmore, John Lucas, Albert King and Len Bias.
Maryland won an NCAA title in 2002 and has been to two Final Fours and 16 Sweet 16s, but the Terrapins were 17-15 last year and last played in the NCAA Tournament in 2010.
Rutgers of the Big East is expected to make it 14 today. The Scarlet Knights haven’t played in the NCAA Tournament since 1991 and were 14-18 last season.
Maryland and Rutgers will give the Big Ten a significant East Coast recruiting presence. It will also bring in two prominent women’s coaches with Iowa connections, Brenda Frese of Maryland and C. Vivian Stringer of Rutgers.
Category: Iowa Hawkeyes men's basketball