Rubbing The Rock recently published an article about conference realignment rumors that could impact Clemson Football. The rumors discussed were specifically referred to as just that: rumors. Things that were being said but not backed up by evidence or multiple sources. They are fun to talk about but questionable regarding authenticity.
Sometimes rumors are about mundane things, like a phone call between two conferences. That rumor was unproven, but not unrealistic. Phone calls happen all the time, but they don’t often amount to anything.
Another rumor was that Florida State was actively trying to exit the ACC. Water is also wet, by the way.
There is a saying, “Where there is smoke, there is fire”, which has been considered wisdom for many years. Carl Sagan also once said “extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence”.
The latest buzz in college football realignment is that the Big Ten is about to expand again. This appears to have come from Jack McGuire on Twitter.
McGuire is an employee of Barstool Sports. His LinkedIn describes him as a blogger and social media person. His Twitter indicates he is connected to Unnecessary Roughness. After a brief but honest search about Scoop City, I must admit I did not immediately figure out what it is.
This comes while Greg Swaim claims Florida State has negotiated a deal to exit the ACC.
Swaim has made a lot of claims of insider knowledge on realignment over the past year, so many that it would be nearly impossible for some of them to not have come true.
Rumors are rumors, but there is a difference between claiming a phone call happened from claiming that a blockbuster deal to add four schools at one time is being brokered. There is a difference between claiming Florida State is trying to get out of the ACC and claiming they have negotiated a $300 million deal to exit.
That hasn’t stopped people from assuming that Clemson is now imminently headed to the Big Ten. Now people are either happy because the Tigers will move to a Big Two conference, unhappy because they wanted to go to the SEC or unhappy because they don’t think a southern school should join a conference with Rutgers or Minnesota.
Whoa there, friends, back it up for a minute.
McGuire’s tweet and Swaim’s tweet could turn out to be true. Someone once broke the news that Oklahoma and Texas were going to the SEC. Someone broke the news that USC and UCLA were going to the Big Ten. Soon after those claims were made, others in the industry began claiming independently that they were true.
After these claims were made, there was a pause by many to see if people like Bruce Feldman, Stewart Mandel, Brett McMurphy, Ross Dellinger, Andy Staples, or anyone with some clout would independently state the same or believe what was being claimed. This time there was none of that.
Some claims about Clemson Football and conference realignment should be scrutinized
William Qualkinbush has put it best on Twitter:
That harkens back to an older tweet expressing the same sentiment.
Then Dellinger did speak up, but he didn’t confirm anything. Instead, he threw shade.
Lastly, Josh Pate fired a direct broadside at McGuire.
Sometimes, we just can’t believe what is being claimed, and this is a fantastic example. McGuire could turn out to be correct, but the current evidence just doesn’t support that conclusion. Swaim’s claim could be accurate, but until it is corroborated by others who have connections, it should be taken with a grain of salt.
Rumors are fun to talk about, but they must be held at arm’s length, because more often than not they turn out to simply be false smoke spread by someone to start a fire.