Whit Babcock Q&A, Part 1: ACC Spring Meetings Aftermath, Unequal Revenue Sharing And NIL

Whit Babcock
Whit Babcock sat down with TSL’s Andy Bitter for a one-on-one interview. (Liam Sment)

Although the 2022-23 athletic calendar is winding down, storylines around the ACC, its future and its survival seem to be ramping up.

Things went public just before the ACC’s spring meetings earlier this month, with reports of seven schools — the since-labeled “Magnificent 7” — meeting loosely in small groups to discuss big-picture items about ACC bylaws and the legal viability of the league’s grant of rights. Virginia Tech was among those seven schools.

Does it mean the ACC is breaking up? Maybe pump the brakes there. But laying all the cards on the table did seem to accelerate a plan for unequal revenue sharing, the framework for which was approved by the ACC’s board of directors Wednesday. Though the specifics are still being ironed out for the 2024-25 academic year, teams in football and basketball could earn their schools more money based on postseason success. 

That doesn’t necessarily put the ACC on sound footing financially relative to the SEC and Big Ten, and with the looming threat of conference realignment, this is hardly a conclusion to the matter. Nobody can feel totally comfortable with the ACC’s situation, with an under-market TV deal that runs through 2036 and, for better or worse, a grant of rights that seemingly locks everyone in through that date.