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The Countdown: 5 Days Until the ACC

Justin K. Aller

Yesterday it was Duke basketball and today it's another premier program - Notre Dame football.

We're five days out from Pitt officially joining the ACC and five is also the number of ACC opponents Notre Dame will play each year on the gridiron.

Notre Dame isn't officially a member of the conference and they remain an independent. But while they're still technically loners, the Irish are more affiliated with the ACC than any other conference. And in the end, that's a huge deal for the league.

As Pitt has learned in scheduling Notre Dame year after year, regardless of what you personally think about the Irish, they remain a large draw. The Panthers have unimaginable difficulty in trying to sell out Heinz Field, but when Notre Dame comes to town, tickets fly off the shelves. But even beyond the ticket sales, games against the Irish add a ton of prestige. Playing Notre Dame means big time football. It means a recruiting chip. It means national TV games.

The Irish bring a ton to the table - even if they're not a full-time football member.

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