It's July 1st which is Canada Day but more importantly it is the day Syracuse, Pittsburgh and Notre Dame officially join the ACC.
Obviously this has been several months in the making and we are still a year away from the final disposition of the latest round of conference realignment. Next year at this time Maryland will crawl out the door, hoping to avoid paying it's bar tab and the ACC welcomes Louisville which is doing really, really well as an athletic program.
But that will be then. Today it's about the three newest members.
2013 Learfield Director's Cup Rank: 39th overall, 8th in the ACC
With Syracuse it is mostly about the basketball with Jim Boeheim showing up to be the conference's resident. curmudgeon. He also brings with him the zone defense which all ACC schools will have to contend with at least once a year. The addition of the Orangemen is also a boost to ACC lacrosse which was already good and just got better.
2013 Learfield Director's Cup Rank: 109th overall, 15th in the ACC
Pittsburgh comes to the ACC with a history in football with likes of Dan Marino having played there. Under Jamie Dixon the basketball program has been a consistent NCAA Tournament team. This season the Panthers also set a school record for wins in baseball.
2013 Learfield Director's Cup Rank: 9th overall, 2nd in the ACC
Notre Dame is not joining in football but will play five ACC teams per season. Despite the lack of full football membership, the Irish augment the league across the board. Notre Dame excels in multiple sports and the addition of the Irish reunites Mike Brey with his former boss Mike Krzyzewski.
During the wild and crazy days of conference realignment, the ACC was thought to be in danger of falling apart. As it has finally unfolded, you could argue the ACC did the best job of adding schools that are academically and geographically consistent with the rest of the league. Including Louisville, these are also athletic programs heading in the right direction.
For all your coverage of the new schools please check out the following SB Nation blogs.
Syracuse: Troy Nunes is an Absolute Magician
Pittsburgh: Cardiac Hill
Notre Dame: One Foot Down
So welcome to the ACC folks and if you see NC State walking around the house without his shirt on screaming about referees and conspiracies, that's perfectly normal.