Louisville joins ACC

Update, 11 a.m. The ACC announced that Louisville has been voted in as a member.

“With its aggressive approach to excellence in every respect, the University of Louisville will enhance our league’s culture and commitment to the cornerstones we were founded on 60 years ago,” ACC Commissioner John Swofford said in a statement. “The University of Louisville is an outstanding addition to the Atlantic Coast Conference and I commend the Council of Presidents for continuing to position our league for the long-term future. If you look at what has been done over the last 15 months, the ACC has only gotten stronger with the additions of Louisville, Notre Dame, Pitt and Syracuse.”

Louisville replaces Maryland as the 14th member of the ACC as the conference realignment version of musical chairs continues. Maryland left the conference it helped found for the Big Ten last week.

Louisville will add a successful and tradition-bound basketball program and a football team that has improved in recent years. The Cardinals won the 2008 Orange Bowl with then-coach Bobby Petrino and will make its third consecutive bowl trip following this season. The Cardinals shared the Big East title last year and would go to a BCS bowl this season if they beat Rutgers Thursday.

The team averaged 49,991 in attendance in this season, 40th in the country and better than seven ACC schools, including Tech.

The addition will again boost what could be considered the top basketball conference in the country. With coach Rick Pitino, the Cardinals reached the Final Four last season and have also qualified for the NCAA tournament nine of the past 10 years.

Louisville has been a member of the Big East, joining in 2005 from Conference USA. It was a part of that league 1995-2005. Prior to that, it was in the Metro Conference (of which Georgia Tech was also a member) 1975-95.

Louisville is the seventh school that the ACC has poached from the Big East, following Boston College, Miami, Notre Dame (joined the ACC as a full member except for football), Pittsburgh, Syracuse and Virginia Tech. With the impending departure of Maryland and the addition of Louisville, the ACC will have more former Big East members than charter members (five – Clemson, Duke, North Carolina, N.C. State, Wake Forest).

The school won a spot in the league over Connecticut and Cincinnati, which were also trying to leave the Big East. Louisville does not have the academic standards that the conference has prided itself on; it is ranked 160th by U.S. News and World Report magazine among national universities, 54 spots below the lowest-ranking member (N.C. State) and lower also than Connecticut (63) and Cincinnati (139).

U.S. News ranking

Duke 8

UVA 24

Wake 27

UNC 30

Boston College 31

Tech 36

Miami 44

Syracuse, Pittsburgh 58

Clemson 68

Virginia Tech 72

Florida State 97

N.C. State 106

Louisville 160

Ken Sugiura, Georgia Tech blog

69 comments Add your comment

Jacket Attack

November 28th, 2012
9:56 am

Jacket Attack

November 28th, 2012
9:57 am

I also thing we will see uconn and cincy come into play here really soon! Now its going to be a fun deal watching how the conference gets realined into sides im guessing the north and the south???

GT = WIDE RECEIVER U

November 28th, 2012
10:02 am

Cincy will be next for the ACC…….and ND will follow in a few years. This will give the ACC 16 teams.

Jacket Man

November 28th, 2012
10:05 am

I read this was actually considered more of a “strategic” move by the ACC in that they decided to go with Louisville first because they didn’t want to give the BIG 12 to get them before they had the chance to (like they got West Virginia), and they believe UCONN and Cincinnati will be more likely to still be around if/when they decide to expand again later.

Also, financially speaking, Louisville’s athletic program is in a MUCH better position than both UCONN and Cincinnati, especially with the support of PaPa John behind them.

Buddy Landel

November 28th, 2012
10:08 am

An upgrade over Maryland in the $$ sports. However, the academic standing is disheartening.

JB

November 28th, 2012
10:25 am

Louisville. Oh Boy, another L for Tech………No more Duke’s to add I guess.

Buzzzed

November 28th, 2012
10:28 am

Agree with Buddy. Louisville tops Maryland in football and basketball but we lose an AAU member. So the ACC adds the Kentucky market. What about the TN market? Any shot at Vandy (an AAU member)?

jefe in marietta

November 28th, 2012
10:47 am

Now I will have a reason to go to Clemson and GA Tech for football games! Go Cards!

Father of 5

November 28th, 2012
10:48 am

The Big 10 isn’t done raiding yet — and GT and BC might be next, with any luck. Everything is about TV markets and ESPN. The ACC slit its throat with its basketball focus, and it will soon become the Carolina Basketball League. GT should be smart enough to bail before the other dominoes fall. GT is being pursued by at least 2 conference who actually benefit their members, unlike the ACC. They need to jump at the chance to escape, just like Maryland.

www

November 28th, 2012
10:53 am

the acc should still hold maryland to the terms of their deal and get the full $50 million.

is it too late to relgate wake forest and boston college to the big east?

77ME

November 28th, 2012
10:55 am

don’t know about the ACC being “clearly the best basketball league” after Tuesday night’s thrashing of ACC teams by the Big 10

you can't fix stupid or bulldogs

November 28th, 2012
10:56 am

going to the Big Ten or the Big 12 is better than the ACC but I don’t see it happening.

Buzzed

November 28th, 2012
11:02 am

More revised geography. And the ACC doesn’t want any part of Vandy in football.

GT Dude

November 28th, 2012
11:10 am

L-Ville you’ve go to be kidding
on well another school that uses a stupid spelling cheer
C-A-R-D-I-N-A-L-S
maybe that is why there academics ranking is so low

Dadgum.....

November 28th, 2012
11:14 am

Ken….I hate to break it to you buddy but the ACC is not considered “clearly the best basketball league”. Only die-hard Carolina or Puke fans still think that. The league has been in steady decline over the last three years as their NCAA tourney participation would suggest. Think about this. Last year the ACC lost, get this, 51 total non-conference games and that was before Jan 1st. Now, with the newest additions coming in 2014 and Louisville it should be a different story. Regardless, football drives the bus even in the ACC. Adding the Cardinals was a no brainer to that end. Nobody cares about the academia parts. Louisville improves the landscape and keeps teams from bailing. That trumps the academia which could improve for Louisville.

Don’t think you will see UConn in the ACC as long as there is a shot at pulling in ND full time. I can see Cincy but UConn is reportedly a long shot now.

BostonJacket

November 28th, 2012
11:16 am

Vandy’s not going to leave SEC money on the table to come join the ACC.

Father of 5 – where’d you hear that Tech was being chased by other conferences?

re: Louisville, I really was hoping the ACC would have snagged UConn instead – a great academic school, a GREAT basketball program, up-an and-coming football program, a geographic rival in BC, and extra opportunities to see my Jackets in person when they travel to New England :)

Ken Sugiura

November 28th, 2012
11:20 am

you’ve got a point.

Dadgum.....

November 28th, 2012
11:22 am

Buzzed…..Vandy will be playing either VT or GT in the Music Bowl. Guess we will find out.

This makes the 3rd straight year the Big 10 has thrashed the ACC.

Don’t think for one minute that adding Louisville wasn’t about circling the wagons and keeping the ACC brethren together. It was about football first and appeasing FSU, VT, and Clemson. Any other reason is window-dressing. UConn or Cincy wasn’t going to get the job done and the natives were getting restless.

Rock on…..

Unbiased Sometimes

November 28th, 2012
11:24 am

Ken, love that Georgia Tech is “Tech” and Virginia Tech is “Virginia Tech”. Small victories.

GIVE ME A BREAK

November 28th, 2012
11:29 am

You could be right.

Dadgum.....

November 28th, 2012
11:36 am

The problem with UConn is, well, UConn. Bad geography for the conference with too many northern schools recently added. In addition they are poorly supported in the New York market. Trumping all that is that they are a dyed-in- the wool Big East school. We have enough of those and UConn would be a tough sell to the ACC populace. Louisville isn’t perceived as a Big East cronie per se as they have been largely independent prior to the Big East stint.

I can’t tell you how unimportant academics are right now when looking at the sports landscape. Being an AAU school is nice and all but if we keep adding Marylands to the mix as we watch FSUs leave how happy are we really going to be that we have such a great academic conference? Not very. Louisville is progressing academic wise and I’m very glad the ACC can hold their hand while they do.

As we get embarrassed by the Big 10 in basketball and the SEC in football every year it seems, it’s kind of refreshing to add a new member with teeth in both sports. I’ll worry about the academics later. Much later!

Rick James

November 28th, 2012
11:39 am

@Buzzzed

Agree with Buddy. Louisville tops Maryland in football and basketball but we lose an AAU member. So the ACC adds the Kentucky market. What about the TN market? Any shot at Vandy (an AAU member)?
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No SEC school will take a backwards step and join the ACC..Nobody is trying to leave the best conference in America.

Luke

November 28th, 2012
11:40 am

Boston, I dunno about a great academic school in UConn. They reportedly DIDNT go to the Big10 due to the fact of mainly academics standards.

Rick James

November 28th, 2012
11:41 am

It will be nice to see Louisville backetball in Atlanta..Another yearly football loss for Tech though.

Rick James

November 28th, 2012
11:46 am

At some the ACC will need to find a replacement for NC State.The SEC wants to get into the North Carolina market and that will be the target school.

gt wrangler

November 28th, 2012
11:54 am

who cares about academic standards for conference teams? It is OK to have a blend of great academics and good academics. The ACC needs to solely focus on getting its TV revenue as high as the Big 10, Pac -12, or SEC. That’s it. Nothing else matters for the conference. Academic mention is for snobs, when talking about conferences. Louisville is a much, much better choice than UCONN and Cincy in my opinion. Way to ACC! Let’s go get Texas and renegotiate our TV contract. Or lets merge with the Big 12 to form one super 16 power conference, then renegoiate our TV contract. Whatever it takes to get our per team revenue equal or higher to whatever the highest conference is!

gt wrangler

November 28th, 2012
12:00 pm

SEC is not the best conference in America. It is the best football conference. The Big 10 has a higher per team average payout and I consider them to be the best Rick James.

GTBob

November 28th, 2012
12:06 pm

Its pretty hard to argue that after adding Pitt, Syracuse, ND, and Louisville that the ACC won’t be far and away the best basketball conference. It has been struggling a little recently but the conference will be absolutely loaded after adding those 4.

Buzzzed

November 28th, 2012
12:07 pm

Rick James, how much more does an SEC school get compared to an ACC school (based on ESPN contract)? By eliminating its athletic dept., Vandy has made it clear academics trump athletics. For a couple mil a year, they might bail the dumb-dumb conference.

Rick James

November 28th, 2012
12:35 pm

@gt wrangler

SEC is not the best conference in America. It is the best football conference. The Big 10 has a higher per team average payout and I consider them to be the best Rick James.
———————————————————————————————————————————–
They dont have the highest payout..How many Big 10 teams are ranked in the top 10 of the BCS rankings? When was the last time a Big 10 team won the national title?

GT Fan

November 28th, 2012
12:39 pm

Guys,

Dont’ engage Rick James. A few weeks ago I busted him up on a UGA blog with something regarding GT, and his only comeback was “I don’t care about GT”

But here he is, AGAIN, on a GT blog, spewing his garbage. Since being clowned by me, I’ve seen him posting on GT blogs more than a dozen times. Gee, I would hate to see how much he’d be on GT blogs if he actually cared.

JuRICh Strong

November 28th, 2012
12:40 pm

This is a win-win for all but West Virginia. If Geno had played this year in the Big East, he would still be leading the Heisman race. They’ll be the Kentucky of the Big 12. No chance to win the conference championship. No one ever wanted to visit their facilities with all the violent crazies at those events in Morgantown. At least Louisville is a class act among these schools Louisville academics will no doubt rise to acceptable ACC standards. Dadgum has the most insightful comments so far. Handsdown.

Rick James

November 28th, 2012
12:41 pm

@gt wrangler

SEC is not the best conference in America. It is the best football conference. The Big 10 has a higher per team average payout and I consider them to be the best Rick James.
———————————————————————————————————————————
The SEC is the best in America and its members receive the highest payouts in.When was the last time a Big 10 school won the national title? How many Big 10 schools are ranked in the top 10 of the BCS poll?

GTBob

November 28th, 2012
12:45 pm

They dont have the highest payout.

The Big 10 does have the highest television payout of the major conferences right now. That will grow even larger after expansion and contract renegotiation.

Rick James

November 28th, 2012
12:46 pm

@Buzzzed

Rick James, how much more does an SEC school get compared to an ACC school (based on ESPN contract)? By eliminating its athletic dept., Vandy has made it clear academics trump athletics. For a couple mil a year, they might bail the dumb-dumb conference
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I know the culture at Vanderbilt my daughter is in school there.They will not not take a step backwards and join the ACC.Name the last school to leave the SEC.Now list schools who would like to be members.Not happening

GT Fan

November 28th, 2012
12:47 pm

MOST SEC fans =

“some of the people you can fool ALL of the time”

Rick James

November 28th, 2012
12:52 pm

@GT Fan

Dont’ engage Rick James. A few weeks ago I busted him up on a UGA blog with something regarding GT, and his only comeback was “I don’t care about GT”

But here he is, AGAIN, on a GT blog, spewing his garbage. Since being clowned by me, I’ve seen him posting on GT blogs more than a dozen times. Gee, I would hate to see how much he’d be on GT blogs if he actually cared.
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I guess you were on the Georgia blog because you care about UGA blog? This is not a Tech blog its an AJC blog and I have no idea what you’re talking about but I obviously made an impression on you..Good luck against FSU

DawginLex

November 28th, 2012
12:53 pm

Folks up here are talking about a report saying UNC and Duke to SEC, Clemson and FSU to Big 12.

They are laughing at Louisville(like always) saying “their neighbors are leaving before they even move in”.

:) :)

Rick James

November 28th, 2012
12:53 pm

@GTBob

The Big 10 does have the highest television payout of the major conferences right now. That will grow even larger after expansion and contract renegotiation
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It always amazes how you choose to respond to part of my comments..

TechApp fan

November 28th, 2012
12:54 pm

if Tech seemingly cannot afford (according to some bloggers) to can johnson (if they wanted to?), how could they possibly come up with $50mil for leaving the ACC?

Tech is noted for it’s D, not the $50 mm in a piggy bank..

Rick James

November 28th, 2012
12:57 pm

@DawginLex

Folks up here are talking about a report saying UNC and Duke to SEC, Clemson and FSU to Big 12.

They are laughing at Louisville(like always) saying “their neighbors are leaving before they even move in
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The ACC is going to implode and I see Tech going to the Big 10.As far as football goes the Sunbelt or Conference USA would be better fits.

UGA OWNS gtu

November 28th, 2012
12:58 pm

Good grief… the acc is a complete JOKE! Just like gtu.

GTBob

November 28th, 2012
1:14 pm

if Tech seemingly cannot afford (according to some bloggers) to can johnson (if they wanted to?), how could they possibly come up with $50mil for leaving the ACC?

A move to the Big 10 would make Tech significantly more money than the ACC, therefore they could justify raising the $50 million for the move. Firing a coach who doesn’t really deserve to be fired yet and ponying up $10 million to make him go away is a completely different scenario.

gt wrangler

November 28th, 2012
1:19 pm

I guess I have to repeat myself Rick James, for you:
“The SEC is the best football conference. The are not the best conference in my opinion because the Big 10 has the highest payout per team.”
There is no need for you to start going over the SEC football accomplishments, because that is not my point and it only agrees with me.

Rick James

November 28th, 2012
1:21 pm

@gt wrangler

guess I have to repeat myself Rick James, for you:
“The SEC is the best football conference. The are not the best conference in my opinion because the Big 10 has the highest payout per team.”
There is no need for you to start going over the SEC football accomplishments, because that is not my point and it only agrees with me
——————————————————————————————————————————
I disagree but respect your opinion..

flibbertygibbit

November 28th, 2012
1:30 pm

Fof5, I’m w/you…PLEASE get us OUT of the damned ACC…I doubt our fortunes in the B10 would improve immediately, but anything’s better than letting the tobacco road schools run the conference (as in ‘vacated acccg’).

The New ACC

November 28th, 2012
1:38 pm

For the first time, I have heard that the Big 10 is courting GA Tech to leave the ACC and become a member. They view GA Tech as an entry into the South market for TV.

I don’t know how much truth there is to this, but I wonder if GA Tech would consider this move. As a GA Tech fan, the massive change in opponents would be very strange!

Ken Sugiura

November 28th, 2012
1:39 pm

Unbiased – I hope you wouldn’t have a problem with a Virginia paper referring to Virginia Tech as “Tech” or a South Carolina paper calling South Carolina “USC.”

The New ACC

November 28th, 2012
1:41 pm

@DawginLex….

What you are hearing is likely rumor mill stuff from University of Kentucky folks. That is just as reliable as stuff GA Tech hears coming from ugag folks.

Don’t count on it.

The New ACC

November 28th, 2012
1:50 pm

I do not see the ACC “imploding” by any means. It will end up being one of the “super conferences” left in the nation. These super conferences will have 16 members, 2 divisions, and will have football conference championship games. They will include:

1. ACC
2. Big 10
3. PAC 10
4. SEC

The remaining will be known as ‘regular’ conferences. This would include the Big East, the Big 12, Sun Belt, etc. These conferences will have fewer members and may or may not have a conference championship game.

The posturing or conference alignments on-going is simply to determine which teams will be in which super conference and which teams will not be in any super conference.

Which team is in which super conference is largely being determined by the respective super conference simply due to the television market. For example, the Big 10 wanted entry into the DC market, so they went after Maryland. It is not because the University of Marland is an outstanding football school, or basketball school, or whatever. It is all about the television market and the money it can bring.