PROVIDENCE, R.I., March 12 (UPI) -- Notre Dame will officially leave the Big East Conference in time to join the Atlantic Coast Conference for the 2013-14 academic year, officials said Tuesday.
The Big East said an agreement had been reached for Notre Dame to leave the conference effective July 1. Notre Dame announced last September that it was joining the ACC in all sports except ice hockey and football, although it must play a certain number of ACC teams in football each fall.
The Big East has been evolving quickly over recent years. Louisville, Pittsburgh and Syracuse have all left for the ACC and West Virginia became a member of the Big 12 Conference. Rutgers is to join the Big Ten Conference in 2014 at the latest.
More problematic was last week's announcement that so-called Catholic seven members of the Big East were leaving for a more basketball-focused league. In that separation agreement the leaving schools actually get to keep the Big East name.
Connecticut is the only school left in the Big East from its founding in 1979.
The schools still in the Big East, which will need to decide on a new name for their conference are: Connecticut, Cincinnati, South Florida and Temple. Central Florida, Houston, Memphis and Southern Methodist join next fall. Tulane is to join in 2014 with East Carolina playing football in the league in 2014 and Navy's football program joining in 2015.
The ACC includes: Clemson, Duke, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Maryland, Miami (Fla.), North Carolina, North Carolina State; Wake Forest, Virginia and Virginia Tech with Louisville, Syracuse, Notre Dame and Pittsburgh giving the league 15 teams. That suggests the ACC would be adding at least one more school in the near future.
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