News With Commentary by TSL Staff

Monday, June 30, 2003
by Will Stewart,

Hurricanes Headed to the ACC With VT

Multiple media outlets are reporting that the Miami Hurricanes have made their decision and will leave the Big East for the ACC. ACC commissioner John Swofford informed league presidents of the news via email early today, and the news was leaked to CBS Sportsline,, The Sporting News, and all other major media outlets.

The Hurricanes have a press conference scheduled for 4:00 p.m. Monday to make it official.

The news puts to an end -- for now -- the 2003 ACC expansion saga. Adding Miami and Virginia Tech will bring the league to 11 teams, one short of the 12 needed to stage a football championship game. Swofford has said he will petition the NCAA to lower the limit and enable the ACC to have a championship game, without further expansion.

Matt Hayes of the Sporting News reported that Swofford had already spoken with NCAA officials about the issue and had received a favorable response. Texas athletics director DeLoss Dodds, the head of the NCAA Football Issues Committee that would decide the question, told the USA Today about a week ago, "My guess is that [a petition to lower the minimum] would be supported."

Although the ACC has invited VT and Miami, and both have accepted and will join the league, few other details are known about expansion plans, including when the expansion takes effect (2004-05 is most likely). It's not known if the conference will split into divisions, how they will handle scheduling, and if Miami and VT will immediately participate in full revenue sharing.

The ACC has a press conference scheduled for Tuesday night at 7:30 in Greensboro, NC. They are expected to welcome both teams into the conference and will no doubt receive many questions about the new league's configuration, as well as plans to expand further to 12 schools.


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