Notre Dame is headed to play basketball in the Atlantic Coast Conference in the 2013-14 season, according to Sports Illustrated’s Pete Thamel.
The program was initially slated to join the ACC from the Big East Conference for the 2014-15 season.
The Big East officials will vote on the issue on Tuesday morning, with Thamel reporting that it’s almost a certainty that the move is approved.
“It’s every everyone’s intention that this will happen tomorrow,” the source told Thamel.
Monetarily, the Fighting Irish will take a small piece of the Big East’s reserve fund, along with keeping their NCAA Basketball units.
Notre Dame and their coach, Mike Brey, have been pretty adamant about wanting to bolt the conference for the ACC next season, so this move is far from surprising. It’s easy enough to understand, with the Catholic 7 teams breaking away from what is now the Big East, beginning next season, taking the conference name with them. The conference as we know it is crumbling and it’s better, at least from an at-large bid standpoint in college basketball, to be in the more-stable ACC as soon as possible.
Now it’s going to be interesting to see of Louisville tries for the same thing. There isn’t a football tie holding Notre Dame around, so that’s working in their favor. But it’s something that the Cardinals don’t have the luxury of possessing. That may be the lone reason Louisville sticks in the Big East/America 12/Unnamed Conference for another year before joining the likes of Syracuse, Pittsburgh and Notre Dame in the ACC.
Thamel also reports that the Fighting Irish are under the same Mutual Commitment Agreement as the Catholic 7, which means the normal exit fee won’t apply to them. They’ll just give up any part of the estimated $70 million in exits fees and other fund that the current Big East has piled up.
Just another day in the life of conference realignment.
UPDATE: It’s official.
“This decision makes sense for the Big East,” conference commissioner Mike Aresco said in a statement. “In view of Notre Dame’s expressed desire to join the ACC on an earlier timetable, the Big East and Notre Dame were able to arrive at an acceptable resolution. The Big East can now focus fully on its future alignment and rebranding efforts. I want to thank the Notre Dame administration and Athletic Director Jack Swarbrick for their efforts in moving toward this orderly transition. Notre Dame has been a valued member of the Big East and we wish them well.”
Follow David Harten on Twitter at @David_Harten