Big East vs. ACC

Today on ESPN.com, Big East blogger Andrea Adelson and ACC blogger Heather Dinich debated which conference is going to be the better of the two in 2011 (read: which conference is not going to be the worst AQ in 2011). Obviously, I'm biased towards the Big East and I believe the Big East can only go up after last year's showing, where the Big East went 3-5 against the ACC.

Here's a list of games between the two conferences:

Wake Forest @ Syracuse

Rutgers @ UNC

West Virginia @ Maryland

NC State @ Cincinnati

Louisville @ UNC

Miami @ USF

Current Big East programs are 283-387-13 all-time against current ACC teams (somehow the Big East is 15-15 all-time against Duke and has a losing record vs. Wake Forest). In fact, the only team that the Big East has a winning record against: Clemson. The biggest win-loss gap is due to Big East teams playing former Big East rival Miami (20-86-2 all time).

I'm not going to pull up BCS bowl records (3-3 for BE vs. 1-5 for ACC since 2005, each having a win over the other), but here is why the Big East should have at least a .500 record vs. the ACC in the regular season:

1) The Big East can only improve: I'm not going to try and sugarcoat last season or bring up our 4-2 bowl record as a way to boost up the conference. It was a bad year for the Big East and we all know it. It was the conference's lowest point since the 2004 season. But as they say, things can only go up. A lot of the road non-conference games (Utah, LSU, NC State, Miami, Notre Dame) are now home games, which should help boost the conference's record vs. AQ programs. The Big East has 3 home and 3 road games vs. the ACC this season. I mean, it can't get any worse for the conference, can it?

2) Better coaching: Let's be honest. Dave Wannstedt and Bill Stewart are nice guys, but as we've seen, they're not the best coaches. Todd Graham and Dana Holgorsen should inject life into both Pitt and WVU. Doug Marrone, Skip Holtz, Charlie Strong, and Butch Jones all have had one more season under their coaching belts. Pasqualoni is a older coach with plenty of coaching experience. The overall coaching in the conference will be markedly better than 2010.

3) More favorable matchups: Last season, the Big East faced Maryland, Miami, Boston College, NC State, UNC, and Clemson. This season, we face Wake Forest, Maryland, UNC, Miami, and NC State. Wake Forest, Miami, and NC State are on Big East fields. Miami, Maryland, and UNC all have new coaches. Wake Forest is...well, Wake Forest. UNC is a mess right now after firing their coach right before fall camp. All these factors point in favor of the Big East.

Here's my predictions. The bold team is the one that I think will win.

Wake Forest @ Syracuse

Rutgers @ UNC

West Virginia @ Maryland

NC State @ Cincinnati

Louisville @ UNC

Miami @ USF

So there you have it. Think I'm wrong? Post a comment and we'll look at this again once the regular season is finished.

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