ACC chooses Louisville, not UConn, to replace Maryland

The Atlantic Coast Conference has announced its presidents and chancellors have unanimously voted to add Louisville as the replacement for Maryland.

In a statement Wednesday, league Commissioner John Swofford said the addition of Louisville along with Notre Dame, Pittsburgh and Syracuse in the past year has made the league stronger.

Louisville athletic director Tom Jurich says the ACC was "the perfect fit for us."

Maryland announced last week it would join the Big Ten in 2014.

A person familiar with the situation told The Associated Press that ACC leaders also considered Connecticut and Cincinnati before the vote to add Louisville during a conference call Wednesday morning. The person spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because the ACC hasn't released details of the expansion discussions.

The decision is a stunning blow for UConn, which has been hoping to find a new conference home because of the instability of the Big East Conference. The Huskies were perceived as the early favorite to replace Maryland.

It's unclear exactly when Louisville will join the ACC. The Cardinals will be the seventh Big East school to leave for the ACC in the past decade.

This latest rapid-fire round of realignment was set off last week by the Big Ten's additions of Maryland and Rutgers, which will join that conference in 2014.

On Tuesday, the Big East added Tulane for all sports and East Carolina for football only, also beginning in 2014.

Adding Louisville would bring the ACC to an even 14 full members, with Pittsburgh and Syracuse beginning conference play in 2013.

Two months ago, the ACC announced the addition of Notre Dame for all the conference's sports but football, with the fiercely independent Fighting Irish committing to play five ACC football opponents each season. Most of Notre Dame's non-football sports have competed in the Big East since 1995.

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