University of Maryland to leave ACC conference, join Big Ten

The Maryland Board of Regents voted unanimously to accept an invitation to join the Big Ten Conference and leave the Atlantic Coast Conference beginning in the 2014-15 academic year, according to the Big Ten Network.

The move expands the Big Ten to 13 total schools, and reports from ESPN indicate Rutgers might follow suit and leave the Big East to become the Big Ten’s 14th school as early as Tuesday.

“There was certainly discussion about the tradition of the ACC,” Maryland Regent Patricia Florestano told USA Today. “And the question is what’s the future. And we’ve got to look to the future.”

The Big Ten most recently expanded in 2010 when the conference lured Nebraska away from the Big 12. That brought the Big Ten to 12 schools, enough to form the six-team Leaders and Legends divisions and introduce the Big Ten Football Championship Game, which featured MSU and Wisconsin in its inaugural year.

The addition of Maryland — and potentially Rutgers — would mean the Leaders and Legends divisions would expand to seven schools each and possibly reshuffle some of the established teams from one division to another.

The Terrapins will bring 20 varsity sports with them but will be subject to pay a $50 million exit fee for leaving the ACC, according to ACC bylaw. Maryland was a charter member of the conference, which founded in 1953.

MSU football most recently played Maryland in 1950, and boasts a 4-1 series record over the Terrapins.

The Spartan men’s basketball team is 3-2 over Maryland in the all time series with the most recent match being played in the second round of the 2010 NCAA tournament. MSU won, 85-83, on a three-point shot made by then-sophomore Korie Lucious as time expired.

Maryland has scheduled a press conference with University President Wallace D. Loh, Chancellor Brit Kirwan, Athletics Director Kevin Anderson and Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delaney at 3 p.m. today.

Keep checking and tomorrow’s edition of The State News for more updates on this developing story.

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