U. Maryland announced their departure from the ACC last Monday, Nov 19 for the Big Ten, and the ACC has already voted in its replacement. Louisville will be joining the ACC in 2014 and become the sixth former Big East team to make the ACC move. Although the Big East requires a 27-month notice prior to a team’s exit, Louisville will probably be able to pay more than the standard $10 million exit fee and be able to leave earlier.
Louisville will be an improvement to the ACC and be a much stronger competitor in many sports than the Terrapins. The Cardinals, if they beat the Rutgers in football on Thursday, will be the Big East champions. Louisville boasts a budget ranked higher than any other ACC team, and has a young football team with only five starters graduating after this season. In basketball, the Cardinals have finished either in the Final Four or the Elite Eight four times since the 2004-2005 basketball season. Currently, Louisville is the fifth-ranked men’s basketball team in the nation and maintains the most profitable basketball program in the country every year. The women’s team is ranked seventh. In 2007, the baseball team made it to the College World Series.
Although Louisville is ranked as the 160th school in the country academically, the ACC believes that its reputation of high academic standards will not be heavily affected by one institute’s ranking. With the addition of the Cardinals, the ACC will have four new members shortly including Syracuse and Pittsburgh in 2013 and Louisville and Notre Dame in 2014.