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Athletic Department Power Index: Atlantic Coast Conference

The AthleticDirectorU Athletic Department Power Index (ADPI), powered by Athlete Viewpoint, continues with a look at the Atlantic Coast Conference. The Athletic Department Power Index will evaluate the desirability of Athletic Director jobs in every Division I conference across the country.


It’s imperative to note the Athletic Department Power Index is not intended or developed to analyze the performance or potential of the current Athletic Director at the respective institutions.  Rather it is an assessment of the opportunity generally through the eyes of both peers and aspirants to the position were it to become available.


Over 100 sitting Athletic Directors and executive-level administrators who currently are or could soon be an ACC AD were invited to share feedback on each AD job in the league.  The data was used to provide detailed insights about the potential for success at each school.


The nine variables utilized to determine the rankings include:


  • Athletics facilities relative to ACC peers
  • Perceptions about the ability to generate donor & corporate support for the athletics program
  • Perceptions about institutional leadership (e.g. President, Trustees, C-Suite) in support of the athletic program
  • Perceptions about the quality of the institution’s brand
  • Perceptions about the potential for serious compliance & NCAA rules violations
  • Potential for Football success relative to ACC peers
  • Potential for Men’s Basketball success relative to ACC peers
  • Potential for success in non-revenue sports relative to ACC peers
  • Quality of Life (cost of living, schools, culture, geography) if all other factors were equal


Here are the overall results (graded on a scale of seven as ‘much better likelihood of success than peers’ & one as ‘much worse’):



Here’s a look at where each ACC institution ranked across each of the nine variables:



The ACC pulled off the Football/Men’s Basketball National Championship sweep during the 2018-19 campaigns with Clemson on the gridiron and Virginia on the hardwood. The following graphics illustrate how each member institution rated for the two high-profile sports (graded on a scale of seven as ‘much better much better likelihood of success than peers’ & one as ‘much worse’).




In addition to high-profile Football and Men’s Basketball success, the Atlantic Coast Conference has long been a national player in non-revenue competition. Here’s how respondents qualified the ability for each member institution to have success in non-revenue sports (graded on a scale of seven as ‘much better much better likelihood of success than peers than peers’ & one as ‘much worse’):



College Football pundits around the nation expect Clemson to repeat as National Champions in 2019-20. How has the success of Dabo Swinney’s program impacted the overall Tigers department? Take a look:



To view additional results from the Athletic Department Power Index: Atlantic Coast Conference, including school comparisons, question comparisons and specific comments from respondents, click here.  The tool allows you to sort ratings by any question and compare schools individually.


This Athletic Department Power Index intends to review all of the Division I conferences in the coming months.  The Mid-American Conference and West Coast Conference were previously surveyed. As was the case with the MAC, WCC & ACC, selected individuals will be invited to participate and share their views about specific conferences and the subsequent data will be shared in a similar manner.  The technical expertise, survey development, survey distribution and data visualization are provided by Athlete Viewpoint.


Up next in the series: the America East Conference.