The Atlantic Coast Conference is pleased that the Connecticut State Court has agreed that the claims against the ACC should be dismissed. It is clear that the plaintiffs were searching for a jurisdiction where they could overcome the legal deficiencies of their case by trying to generate exaggerated publicity surrounding their claims. Obviously, the plaintiffs’ tactics were unsuccessful. To its credit, the court properly applied the law and ignored the plaintiffs’ rhetoric.
This lawsuit should never have been in court in the first place, in Connecticut or in any other state. Conference expansion and institutional realignment is not a new concept, is not a creation of the ACC, and is not a one-sided proposition as implied by the plaintiffs in this case. Colleges and universities are free to associate with other institutions of their choosing, and the Big East’s plans to add four new members to their own conference from Conference USA acknowledges this right.
Given this decision, it is time for the plaintiffs to put this matter behind them, re-establish a positive working relationship with their fellow schools, and allow Big East and ACC members to apply our collective time and resources toward the benefit of real institutional needs. Competition between the ACC and Big East schools should be on the playing field rather than in the courtroom.