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The North Carolina House speaker says the college athletics scheduling bill won’t go any further

RALEIGH, NC – RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – Legislation that would have the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and NC State University play each other annually in football and basketball and then regularly play against three other public schools has advanced no further than a quick committee meeting this week, House Speaker Tim Moore said Thursday.

A House Committee on Universities approved the measure Tuesday without debate, and with a bill bill expressing optimism about its future afterward. But Moore, who could have major influence over the future of the legislation, said the bill goes no further. He did not give a specific reason for this.

“It’s had the hearing it’s going to get. … I told them they could hear it in committee, but it won’t come up,” Moore said, jokingly adding, “I mean, everyone knows Carolina is going to win all those games anyway.” He attended UNC-Chapel Hill.

The bill would require the UNC-Chapel Hill and NC State football, men’s and women’s basketball teams to play each other at least once a year. And the Wolfpack and Tar Heels should play East Carolina University, Appalachian State University or the University of North Carolina at Charlotte at least once a year in those sports.

The bill’s proponents have presented the proposal as a way to secure deep rivalries between NC State and UNC-Chapel Hill amid volatile times in college athletics and to build competition with other University of North Carolina system schools.

Conference realignments also threaten long-term and regional matchups. The Atlantic Coast Conference, of which UNC and NC State are founding members, faces uncertainty about its long-term future as it continues to face a growing financial gap behind the Big Ten and Southeastern conferences.

Rep. David Willis of Union County, who took up the bill in committee this week, did not immediately respond to a message seeking comment Thursday. While the bill may now stall, its popularity in some corners could be a signal for college athletic departments to schedule these games themselves.

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