Pittsburgh and Syracuse, once flagship programs of the Big East, have been accepted as members of the Atlantic Coast Conference, extending the league's current membership to 14 schools, the ACC announced on Sunday morning.
The exact date for the move remains uncertain, as Big East bylaws require schools to pay a $5 million exit fee and give 27 months notice before leaving. ACC commissioner John Swofford said the league "fully respects" the bylaws of the Big East, but Pitt chancellor Mark Nordenberg said the Big East provides options for withdrawl.
"I would think that in the weeks ahead everyone will be looking at the transition period and trying to determine whether the 27-month notice period really serves everyone's best interest or whether there should be some modification to it," Nordenberg said. "It was important to us that commissioner Swofford made clear right from the start the ACC would be comfortable with waiting for that period of time if that is the way that things unfold."
The ACC's preemptive move comes in the wake of uncertainty across the collegiate landscape, as Texas and Oklahoma are expected to meet on Monday to discuss their futures in the Big 12, and Texas A&M is still trying to work its way into the SEC.