Good year for the revenue sports…but

This year has been a good year if you are part of Wolfpack Nation. A bowl win, Men’s Sweet 16, and a Super Regional all occurred this year. Only Baylor and Florida could say the same thing. This is the best set of results for the major sports in one single academic year in a long time. But it could have been even better. More good times are coming we all hope and feel.

But one major issue still lingers over the athletic department. The dry spell of the lack of a conference championship in the four major sports has now reached an infathomable 20 years. After investigating the number of conference titles won by BCS schools from 2000-2011 in great detail last year, I was really hoping that I would not have to update my spreadsheet again this year. Well, unfortunately I needed to update through the 2011-2012 academic year.

For a quick reminder, here is what we are looking at for the analysis. The basis for the article is the following quote.

In an interview last year with Pack Pride, NC State’s athletic director Debbie Yow stated the following:

In my office we refer to the Big Four and they are football, men’s basketball, women’s basketball, and baseball. They need to be taken care of. They are at the top of the list in terms of meeting needs and wants.

Yow’s statement parallels my beliefs for a long time. If these are the four revenue sports in her eyes, then that is good enough for me. I know that in reality football and men’s basketball are THE revenue sports, but women’s basketball and baseball are also revenue sports. In some places, they are major revenue sports.

Since these are the four most important sports in our athletic director’s eyes, what is the drought that AD Yow and the respective coaching staffs are trying to end?

1. What years and who should I use to begin this analysis?

This can be very arbritary and can change the outcome of the analysis. I have chosen the beginning of Lee Fowler’s tenure as athletic director. The academic year of 2000-2001 is where this analysis begins. What schools to use was a bit easier. I only have interest in comparing like schools, so I will only look at BCS schools.

Note: Conference champions are considered to be the winner of the conference tournament or the football championship game. For the Pac-12 and Big 10, since they did not have a football championship game until 2011, any school that had a share of the conference title was awarded as much. For the Big East, as they do not have a football championship game, any school that had a share of the conference title was awarded as much.

2. How do we compare with the other ACC schools in terms of number of conference titles in the four sports?

Here are the number of conference titles for each ACC school since 2000-01.

Note: The number of titles for Boston College, Miami, and Virginia Tech include titles won in both the Big East and ACC, as they have been in both conferences during the time span of the analysis.

3. For those interested, here are the tables for the other BCS conferences:

Big 12
Big 10
Big East

4. Who has the least conference titles?

We can see in the table showing the ACC schools that NC State has won 0 conference titles. Are there any other schools that have not won any conference titles in that time span? Yes, there are 4 other schools. They are:

    Texas Tech
    South Florida

Each of these schools does have a caveat that the Wolfpack doesn’t. Arkansas has won two division football titles while Texas Tech has won one. South Florida didn’t join the Big East until 2005. Utah did not join the Pac-12 until 2011 (and the Utes even won two BCS bowl games in that past decade).

NC State doesn’t have any such caveats.

A couple of more discouraging statistics need to be stated. It is no stretch to say that the Wolfpack has been the least successful athletic program in terms of conference championships in the four revenue sports since 2000-2001.

Here is one utterly unbelievable statistic and comment:

As discussed a couple of years ago:

[since] the beginning of the 1992-1993 season there is one full-time BCS school that has not won a single conference title in football, men’s basketball, women’s basketball or baseball:

NC State

This isn’t limited to a drought of just conference titles. In the Fowler era of ineptitude:

Since Lee Fowler became NC State’s Athletics Director, the Wolfpack is the only ACC athletics programs to have failed to participate in at least a Frozen Four, a College World Series, a BCS Bowl, or a National Basketball Championship game.

Did you know that half of the Atlantic Coast Conference has now participated in the College World Series since 2006? Clemson, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Miami, North Carolina and Virginia have all found a way to make the CWS at least once in the last [seven] seasons with Carolina appearing four years in a row. Unfortunately, even with an all-important renovated ‘fuhcility’, NC State is not amongst the group.

But what does the future hold? In my opinion, I am more optimistic now than ever before. Yow is transforming the athletic department into a better athletic department from bottom to top. Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither will the Wolfpack come out of the abyss of the past 20 years in 2 years. The foundation though is being laid with better financial arrangements, higher expectations on the coaches, and a no-nonsense approach to running an athletic department.

Specifically, if you look at the these four major sports, reasonable people will say that the Wolfpack is the favorite (or one of the top 2) in both men’s basketball and baseball. The football team will have an excellent opportunity to compete and capture a division title to get a chance to win that first ACC championship since 1979. Women’s basketball seemed to make strides late in the season, punctuating it with a win over top-seeded Duke in the ACC Tournament.

The future looks bright. I anticipate NOT having to write this article next year.

About ruffles31

1996 NC State graduate who is still waiting on his first ACC conference championship in any of the four main revenue sports (football, men's basketball, women's basketball, and baseball) since enrolling. All I want is a ACC Champions t-shirt.

ACC AD & Department Debbie Yow NCSU Sports History Stat of the Day

16 Responses to Good year for the revenue sports…but

  1. stately 06/19/2012 at 8:52 AM #

    I think State has a chance at ending the “streak” in the next 2 years. We’ve got a small window (next season) in basketball to win an ACC Championship before UNC and Duke have completely reloaded with a two-deep of h.s. all-americans once again. And I think baseball with Rodon, Trea Turner, the rest of the freshmen class and some key, experienced upperclassmen have a chance to breakthrough in the next couple of years. Football is capable (with an excellent secondary and experience at the key positions of qb, ol, and rb) next season albeit an underdog to FSU and Clemson, IMHO. Unfortunately, I just don’t see women’s basketball winning one anytime soon. There’s just too big a talent gap to overcome with the top teams in the ACC (Duke, Maryland, UNC, GT, Miami,

  2. state73 06/19/2012 at 9:45 AM #

    We are indeed on the right path to success. However we must show some patience. No school could undo the mess Fowler left us in overnight. It takes time to get the right people and to instill a winning attitude. I believe we are well on our way. GO PACK.

  3. ChemE79a 06/19/2012 at 10:46 AM #

    I realize losing the championship game is still losing but I think it is an indication that expecting to breakthrough in the near future is not unreasonable. With that in mind here are our numbers for the time period.
    Baseball Championship appearances – 4
    Men’s BB Championship appearances – 3
    Women’s BB Championship appearances – 3
    Football Championship appearances – 0
    With the exception of football we are making the championship game about a quarter to a third of the time. In a ten to twelve team league that is not bad.

    We just need to win some of those championship games.

  4. old13 06/19/2012 at 11:44 AM #

    I think we have won championships during that time period because there are actually five major sports including bass fishing! At least that’s what Unkle Jed Foulup always told us! :>)

  5. tractor57 06/19/2012 at 11:46 AM #

    Progress but not the destination. I am heartened by the progress (greatly heartened) and I’m not so sure there is a short window in basketball. This isn’t the Wolfpack of the last 20 years.

  6. stately 06/19/2012 at 1:07 PM #

    No, this definitely isn’t the Wolfpack of the last 20 years. And the “small window” I mentioned isn’t a slight on our potential for the future. It’s just that next season is a unique opportunity where State (with Leslie, Howell, and Brown in particular) has a distinct advantage over our blue rivals, IMHO. When have we been able to say that in the last 20 years? And with us losing 2 perhaps all 3 of them after next season, we’ve got to seize the moment.

    All this being said FSU or Miami will probably win the ACC basketball title.

  7. WV Wolf 06/19/2012 at 1:39 PM #

    Our athletic department has saved a ton of money by not having to purchase championship banners and rings. They were just being financially responsible.

  8. Wulfpack 06/19/2012 at 3:00 PM #

    These stats are really quite stunning when you think about it, and not in a good way. Great chance next year to buck the trend. MBB and Baseball should ahve excellent chances.

  9. HPWolf 06/19/2012 at 3:38 PM #

    Any ACC team caught cheating in academics or athletics during the period in question should have their championships removed from the above list.

  10. Wufpacker 06/19/2012 at 4:39 PM #

    “No school could undo the mess Fowler left us in overnight.”

    To be fair, things were already in a big enough mess when Fowler arrived. He just happened to excel at making things worse.

  11. Primewolf 06/19/2012 at 8:57 PM #

    Here are my subjective probabilities of winning:

    1. Football: 1/7
    2. MBB: 1/6
    3. WBB: 1/25
    4. Baseball: 1/6

    The union of these can be estimated by adding the probabilities, which produces about 50% chance of winning at least one championship.
    My probabilities may be high because I don’t feel like we have a 50% chance of winning a championship in one of these sports.

    If we applied those same probabilities to a second year and assume statistical independence, then the probability of winning at least one over a two year period is 75%.

    Still seems high. Have been a Wolfpacker for too long to even think about a championship.

    Goes to show how far we have dropped and how far we have to go. My lack of confidence guess is we have about a 50% chance of winning at least one in the next 5 years.

  12. NOT A FAN OF BLUE 06/20/2012 at 9:16 AM #

    “[since] the beginning of the 1992-1993 season there is one full-time BCS school that has not won a single conference title in football, men’s basketball, women’s basketball or baseball: NC State”

    ^ this is the final word

    Find a way, Deb.

  13. howlie 06/20/2012 at 11:04 AM #

    I’ll take a crack at it for next year:

    1. Football: 33%
    2. MBB: 75% (higher if you can count EITHER ACCT or “regular season”
    3. WBB: 8%
    4. Baseball: 85%

  14. Wufpacker 06/20/2012 at 1:54 PM #

    I think you might be a little overly optimistic with #2 and #4 there. Probably #1 as well.

  15. drspaceman 06/20/2012 at 10:27 PM #

    “1. Football: 1/7
    2. MBB: 1/6
    3. WBB: 1/25
    4. Baseball: 1/6

    The union of these can be estimated by adding the probabilities, which produces about 50% chance of winning at least one championship.
    My probabilities may be high because I don’t feel like we have a 50% chance of winning a championship in one of these sports.”

    taking your numbers the chance of achieving 1 or more of these championships is 43%. the chance of achieving one or more in two years is 67%.

  16. drspaceman 06/21/2012 at 7:56 AM #

    and if winning a championship were a 1/12 proposition in any sport in a given year for the past 12 years (i know that there haven’t been 12 teams in the acc in all of the past 12 years but bear with me), there’s a 98.5% chance that we win at least one of those in the last 12 years. of course championships aren’t based on pure probability. we need to stack the odds in our favor and i think we’re finally starting to do that.

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