Maryland, Rutgers to Big Ten? The 10 weirdest matchups this will produce

Rob Carr

Conference realignment is back? Conference realignment is always with us. The Big Ten might be about to pull Maryland and Rutgers from the ACC and Big East, establishing a swath of land from the Atlantic coast to Nebraska and adding two big TV markets (and traditionally lackluster athletic departments). WHO'S FIRED UP?

Maryland and Rutgers are probably going to join the Big Ten. What? I know. According to reports from multiple outlets*, the Big Ten will absorb charter members from the two East Coast conferences, and just as it did last time, start up a whole new round of conference realignment. Expect the ACC to pluck another from the Big East (UConn's been believed to be next in line) and the Big East to just continue spackling.

* And quite a few others, some of them just as confused as we are. I mean, yeah, the whole thing's about those NEW YORK CITY TV SETS and their Washington D.C. counterparts. We're all smart enough to get that. Makes it not one bit less perplexing.

Plenty of loose ends remain to be tied up. Foremost, that $50 million the broke Terps would have to pay the ACC if they left (though that could be taken care of by some combination of Jim Delany and Under Armour). Remember, Maryland was one of three ACC schools to vote against the MEGAFEE in the first place -- this has been bubbling for a while now, with the ACC's pickup of a portion of Notre Dame apparently what Delany was waiting on. Then: what's this do to the Big Ten's divisions? Then many other things.

Reaction: Confused Maryland fans || Triumphant Rutgers fans

Excepting a matchup between Maryland and Rutgers themselves, here are our NON-B1G POWER RANKINGS of the most baffling future Big Ten games (road team first, home team second) -- we actually debated this for quite a while, but they're certainly open to further tweaking:

10. Wisconsin-Maryland

9. Illinois-Maryland

8. Maryland-Iowa

7. Rutgers-Michigan State

6. Rutgers-Nebraska

5. Minnesota-Maryland

4. Michigan State-Rutgers

3. Indiana-Rutgers

2. Michigan-Maryland

1. Nebraska-Rutgers

Also, Rutgers-Syracuse will now be a potential Big Ten-ACC Challenge game.

Your thoughts in the comments below, and I'd be happy to explain the inclusion of any of these as best I can. Some of them just are what they are, and we all float on.

But the really wacky part? We don't even have to try to make this all very, very strange:

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