What first began circulating on Saturday following MSU’s loss to Northwestern is beginning to come true.
Maryland is headed to the Big Ten, effectively starting in the 2014-15 season.
“Adding the University of Maryland opens up a whole new set of doors for the Big Ten conference,” said MSU athletic director Mark Hollis, who sent 13 roses to his counterpart at Maryland to welcome the school to the Big Ten. “As strong as that program is and their history, I think there’s gonna be so much added value for the Big Ten institutions to find themselves in that marketplace.”
The move was approved by the Maryland board of regents. Rutgers is expected to announce its joining the conference on Tuesday, according to ESPN’s Brett McMurphy.
Expanding was a necessity for the Big Ten according to Hollis.
“It is a situation where, make no bones about it, we’re trying to be defensive in our posturing within the nation,” Hollis said. “With the footprint of where the Big Ten conference is, the University of Maryland gives us a very strong hold, especially for the long term, on the east coast of the United States in a market that’s very important to every school in the Big Ten Conference.
“(They have a) very strong alumni base, very important to where our growth is going to be in the future.”
The expansion could spark talks of an expanded conference schedule but Hollis hopes the Big Ten doesn’t go the nine game route because the imbalance between five home games vs. five away could determine conference champions.
MSU and Maryland haven’t played each other in football since 1950 and the Spartans own a 4-1 record in the all-time series. The Spartans are 2-3 all-time against Rutgers and the teams played in both 2003 and 2004.
The MSU men’s basketball team is 3-2 all-time against Maryland with the last meeting taking place during the 2010 NCAA Tournament. Four of the all-time meetings between the schools have taken place at neutral sites. MSU won their only meeting with Rutgers on the hardwood, which came in 1970.
Maryland won a basketball national title in 2002 and would be the most recent member of the conference to win a hoops national championship unless one of the current Big Ten members win over the next two seasons.
Maryland’s football program is currently 4-7 after winning just two games last season. They have missed a bowl in three of the last four seasons. The last winning season for the Terps came in 2010 when they went 9-4.
Maryland’s basketball team hasn’t had a losing season since 1992-93 but has missed the NCAA Tournament each of the past two years.
Columnist Graham Couch wrote about the expansion in his column today and notes that the Big Ten won’t be finished after adding Maryland and Rutgers.
What are your thoughts on the move by the Big Ten?
Also this morning, MSU freshman guard Gary Harris was named the Big Ten freshman of the week. He averaged 18.5 points while helping the Spartans earn wins over No. 7 Kansas and Texas Southern.