The Notre Dame Fighting Irish have long been the crown jewel in conference expansion talks, but the school has maintained that it needed a home that would reflect its own balance of academics and athletics. With its move to the ACC, the Irish and its braintrust signaled that they have found that place. That sentiment was expressed by Notre Dame President, Rev. John I. Jenkins.
"The ACC is composed of some of the most highly respected universities in the country, and we at Notre Dame look forward to joining them," said Notre Dame President, Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C. "With a mix of institutions - many of which are also private, similar to Notre Dame in size, and committed to excellence in research and undergraduate education - the ACC is an exceptionally good fit for us academically, as well as athletically."
Now in the ACC, the University of Notre Dame walks into a partnership with schools that look an awful lot like they do. There's more private schools, there's more focus on academics at the liberal arts level, and there isn't 100 years of dislike standing in the way.
The Irish are expected to join the ACC in 2015.