We've all heard it - Jamie Dixon's not going to be happy. There are even those saying he's not happy.
The theory is that Dixon loves the Big East so much that he can't possibly be happy in the ACC. That he could even leave Pitt - something he's passed on before.
If that ever happens, I'm hard-pressed to think it's because of Pitt's move to the ACC.
"I've always felt that if we were to move conferences," he said, "that the ACC would be the conference."
"We adapt to how the game is being called or played," Dixon said. "We can play different styles. No matter what, if you're from Pittsburgh and have success, you're going to be the tough, physical, defensive-minded team even though we've been No. 1 in the country in offensive efficiency. That never gets to be part of our persona per se. We'll adapt. We've been good offensively yet we're still known as the team that beats people up."
And, oh yeah, about that recruiting thing:
Of all the adjustments that will be made with the move to the ACC, Dixon said recruiting might be the least effected.
"Not too many challenges with recruiting," he said. "We'll be recruiting against the same schools as far as I can tell. I don't see it being too much of a change in the recruiting world. We're going to find the player.
"We've never been a school to focus on one area. We have to recruit in certain places, but we never felt obligated or focused or relied on one area to recruit because that's where you get beat. That's how you get poor recruiting classes. We don't recruit the area. We recruit the kid.
"We're not going to be dependent on what team is in our conference or who is on our schedule that year. We don't want to get into a down period in a certain city, which we have seen. Some years, cities are up and some years they're down. The cycles change. We adapt. [Washington] D.C. is strong, Philadelphia, New York. ... We'll find out where they're at."
"I think it will have zero effect," Herrion said Wednesday. "Jamie has built that program to continue to sustain success. They've proven over the last 10 years that program can win against teams all over the country. There will be a transition period and an adjustment geographically, but I think it will have zero effect on the program.
"It might even help them in a lot of areas. They may even be able to go into other areas and get kids that they couldn't before."
Now, I don't doubt that Dixon loved/s the Big East. He's said as much on plenty of occasions. And if Pitt were going to the Big Ten or Big 12, I'd expect he could be disgruntled. But let's face it - if the conference can secure UConn, the ACC is the new Big East. The league was already plenty strong with superpowers North Carolina and Duke. There's also a strong Maryland program. After that, you don't have any great programs, but many that have put together good teams in recent years. Now you add Pitt and Syracuse to that - two more strong programs.
"I’ve talked with them and their Athletic Director," Dixon said. "He’s a friend of mine. They’re in a better position now than they were last year and they understand that and know that. They knew what the conference’s situation was when they signed up for it."