Notre Dame will leave Big East for ACC this fall

Question of the Day

What has been the biggest debacle on Obama's watch?

View results

SOUTH BEND, Ind. — Goodbye Madison Square Garden, Georgetown and Villanova. Hello Greensboro Coliseum, North Carolina and Duke.

A year from now, Notre Dame men’s basketball team will be preparing for the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament instead of its annual trip to New York, where the Irish are a frustrating 9-17 all-time in the Big East tournament and have never made it to the league title game. The school announced Tuesday it is leaving the fractured Big East a year sooner than originally anticipated for the ACC in all sports except football and hockey.

The switch was approved in a vote by Big East university presidents in the wake of a split announced last week of the league’s football schools and seven Catholic schools that next season are forming their own basketball-focused conference with the Big East name. The vote means Notre Dame coaches can move forward with scheduling for the 2013-14 school year.

“It removes the uncertainty that made it hard for our coaches and athletes, so we’re very happy to resolve that for them,” athletic director Jack Swarbrick said in a telephone interview.

The move means stability for all Notre Dame sports and has some familiarity to Irish fans, with Syracuse and Pittsburgh joining the Irish in moving to the ACC next season and former Big East teams Boston College, Miami and Virginia Tech already part of the ACC.

If the Irish had opted to stay in the football-centric league, they would have faced some not-so-familiar opponents in Memphis, Central Florida, Houston, Tulane and SMU, along with returning members Cincinnati, Connecticut, South Florida, Louisville and Rutgers. Louisville joins the ACC after next season, while Rutgers joins the Big Ten.

If the Irish had chosen to align with the Catholic schools, they would have faced DePaul, Georgetown, Marquette, St. John’s, Seton Hall, Providence and Villanova. Butler, Xavier and Creighton have been mentioned as potential members.

The ACC will provide some Notre Dame’s non-revenue sports with more challenging opponents. North Carolina’s women’s soccer team has won 21 national championships; four different men’s soccer teams from the conference have won national championships in the past six years; Virginia and Maryland played for the national title in men’s lacrosse in 2011; and Duke has won four national championships in golf in the past 11 years.

“It’s a better situation than the consequence of having the Catholic 7 and the Big East split,” Swarbrick said.

The move comes six months after Notre Dame announced it was opting to join the ACC in all sports except football and hockey. Big East Commissioner Mike Aresco said the move made sense for the league.

“The Big East can now focus fully on its future alignment and rebranding efforts,” he said.

ACC Commissioner John Swofford said the league welcomed the early arrival of the Irish, saying the additions of Syracuse and Pitt this year and Louisville next year will make the league’s basketball schedule “brutal, which is a great thing for our league and fans.”

Swarbrick would not comment on whether Notre Dame paid an exit fee or other financial terms of the agreement. He said the decision to join the ACC early evolved over time, saying Notre Dame had been in constant touch with the ACC.

“It was an ongoing conversation,” he said. “These were daily conversations over weeks and months with the ACC, Big East and the Catholic 7.”

Story Continues →

View Entire Story

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Comments
blog comments powered by Disqus
Get Adobe Flash player
You Might Also Like
  • Nathan Walker waits to take the ice during the Capitals' development camp at the Kettler Capitals Iceplex in Arlington on Monday, July 9, 2012. (Ryan M.L. Young/The Washington Times)

    Nathan Walker’s NHL dreams send him around the world

  • Washington Nationals' Anthony Rendon, third from left, smiles as he warms up with his teammates who were were wearing t-shirts in support of him for the All Star game before an interleague baseball game against the Baltimore Orioles at Nationals Park, Tuesday, July 8, 2014, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

    Anthony Rendon not an All-Star, but he’s been Nats’ MVP

  • Baltimore Orioles manager Buck Showalter speaks during a media availability in the dugout before an interleague baseball game against the Washington Nationals at Nationals Park, Monday, July 7, 2014, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

    LOVERRO: Suck-up Buck Showalter needs history lesson

  • Argentina's Maxi Rodriguez, left, celebrates with goalkeeper Sergio Romero after scoring the decisive goal during the World Cup semifinal soccer match between the Netherlands and Argentina at the Itaquerao Stadium in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Wednesday, July 9, 2014. Argentina beat the Netherlands 4-2 in a penalty shootout to reach the World Cup final. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)

    Argentina beats Dutch in shootout to reach World Cup final

  • Washington Redskins safety Tanard Jackson speaks during a media availability after an NFL football training camp practice at Redskins Park, Friday, Aug. 3, 2012 in Ashburn, Va. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

    Tanard Jackson suspended indefinitely by NFL — again

  • Celebrities In The News
  • Hall of Fame Inductees, KISS, Paul Stanley, Peter Criss, Gene Simmons, and Ace Frehley speak at the 2014 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony on Thursday, April, 10, 2014 in New York. (Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP)

    KISS rocker Gene Simmons touts 1 percent life: ‘It’s fantastic’

  • This image from video released by Funny Or Die shows President Obama, left, with actor-comedian Zach Galifianakis during an appearance on "Between Two Ferns," the digital short with a laser focus on reaching people aged 18 to 34. The president urged young people to sign up for the new health care plan through an appearance posted Tuesday, March 11, 2014, on the comic website Funny or Die, bypassing TV talk show titans like Jimmy Fallon or Jimmy Kimmel for an online audience. (AP Photo/Funny Or Die)

    Obama’s ‘Ferns’ interview gets Emmy nod

  • ** FILE ** In this Nov. 12, 2013, file photo, actor Alec Baldwin leaves court in New York. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)

    Alec Baldwin in talks to play Rob Ford-like mayor in new NBC drama