Nov. 29, 2012
On Wednesday, Nov. 28, the Atlantic Coast Conference Council of Presidents unanimously voted to accept the University of Louisville as its newest member. Below are some frequently asked questions and answers as the ACC prepares for the Cardinals’ arrival as a full-fledge member.
When will Louisville begin competing athletically as an ACC member?
The ACC will be respectful and allow Louisville and the Big East work out the details and timeline as to when they become a competing member.
Louisville’s acceptance to the ACC, along with Maryland’s pending departure, leaves the ACC at 15 members. Are there any plans to add additional teams?
There is no plan for additional expansion beyond 15 members.
From a football standpoint, where does Louisville fit into the conference’s two-division format?
ACC Football will continue to compete in divisions with Louisville becoming a member of the Atlantic Division.
What does Louisville’s storied men’s basketball program bring to the ACC?
The Cardinals have a rich history in collegiate athletics as a whole. But men’s basketball has long been a marquee program, winning NCAA titles in 1980 and 1986, and perennially competing in the NCAA Tournament. Louisville has reached the Final Four nine times in 38 NCAA appearances, and its 64 wins in NCAA Tournament play rank sixth all-time. Louisville has been named the seventh best collegiate basketball program of all time by Street and Smith’s, The Sporting News and CBS Sportsline.
Is that success reflected in fan support?
Yes. In addition to averaging over 21,500 fans per home game last season, the Louisville metro area has had the nation's highest-rated college basketball television market in each of the past 10 years.
But the Cardinals have excelled in other sports as well, correct?
Absolutely. Over the past six years, Louisville is the nation's only school that has reached both the men's and women's basketball Final Four, a BCS bowl game, the College World Series and the Men's Soccer College Cup. Louisville football owns a 9-2 record this season and faces Rutgers on Thursday night with a chance to clinch its second straight Big East title and a BCS Bowl berth. Louisville currently owns a volleyball RPI of 4 and is hosting the 2012 NCAA finals. Softball owned an RPI of 12 last spring, and Cardinal baseball has been strong recently as well.
How does Louisville rate in terms of athletic facilities?
The athletic facilities are rated among the finest nationally, and the university is making constant efforts to improve. Over $150 million has gone into construction of new facilities and upgrades since 1997.
When it comes to its mission of maintaining excellence in both academics and athletics, where does the ACC now stand?
Of the ACC’s future 15 member league, 10 schools rank among the top 58 institutions in the 2013 U.S. News & World Report survey of “America’s Best Colleges”, more than any other conference also competing at the highest level athletically. The next closest conference features seven institutions in the top 58. “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,” ACC Commissioner John Swofford said.