Swarbrick on Maryland, Big Ten rumor: It 'does not come as a surprise'

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Swarbrick on Maryland, Big Ten rumor: It 'does not come as a surprise'

SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- In a season in which the Big Ten has struggled to make waves on the field, a rumored move from the ACC to Big Ten by Maryland created plenty of noise on Saturday afternoon.
Multiple reports indicate Maryland is engaged in talks to become the Big Ten's 13th member, with Rutgers then joining the conference from the Big East as school No. 14. The report comes a little more than two months after Notre Dame agreed to become a partial member of the ACC, moving all its sports into the conference except football and hockey, with the football team playing five games against ACC opponents as part of the deal.
Notre Dame AD Jack Swarbrick, though, wasn't fazed by the report.
"If this this occurs, this particular outcome, does not come as a surprise," Swarbrick said Saturday.
While the potential move seemingly came out of nowhere, but Swarbrick said he knew through various conversations if the Big Ten were to expand, it would look toward the East. He added the acquisition of the YES Network by FOX -- which operates the Big Ten Network with the conference -- makes the rumor more believable.
Adding Maryland and Rutgers, on the surface, would appear to be a move that would dilute the Big Ten's football product, which hasn't been strong in recent years as is. But Maryland brings the Washington D.C. and Baltimore markets, while Rutgers can deliver New York. For the Big Ten Network's bottom line, that's huge.
But even if Maryland does indeed bolt for the Big Ten, it wouldn't alter Swarbrick and Notre Dame's feelings toward moving to the ACC.
"It doesn't have any impact," Swarbrick said. "It has absolutely zero impact, and it wouldn't change anything about our decision-making process. If we were going to engage in it today, it wouldn't change at all."

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USA TODAY

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