However, in today’s intercollegiate athletics, competition has become so balanced and so competitive that it is virtually impossible to maintain a high level of consistency.

    Yet the Atlantic Coast Conference has defi ed the odds. Now in its 58th year of competition, the ACC has long enjoyed the reputation as one of the strongest and most competitive intercollegiate conferences in the nation. And that is not mere conjecture, the numbers support it.

    Since the league’s inception in 1953, ACC schools have captured 120 national championships, including 64 in women’s competition and 56 in men’s. In addition, NCAA individual titles have gone to ACC student-athletes 130 times in men’s competition and 91 times in women’s action. If success is best measured in terms of wins and losses, then the ACC is unrivaled in NCAA annals. With Duke’s victory over Butler in last year’s NCAA title game, ACC teams have won fi ve of the last 10 NCAA National Championships and 12 overall, including eight over the last 20 years.

    No conference has compiled a better NCAA Tournament record than the ACC since the inaugural tournament in 1939. ACC teams have posted an NCAA Tournament-best mark of 347-175 for a sterling .665 winning percentage against the nation’s toughest competition.

    The ACC is the only conference to have each of its teams make at least one NCAA Tournament appearance over the past fi ve years.

    In the 26 years of the current 64/65-team fi eld, the ACC has produced 24 Final Four teams, an average of almost one per year and six more than any other conference.

    Since the NCAA Tournament was expanded to 64 teams in 1985, ACC teams have compiled a 249-126 (.665) NCAA record, including 66 “Sweet 16” appearances and 24 Final Four berths – all NCAA Tournament bests. Since 1985, 67 of the 133 ACC teams receiving NCAA berths have won at least two NCAA Tournament games.

    North Carolina’s Tar Heels lead all ACC schools with fi ve NCAA basketball championships to their credit. Duke is next with four national titles, followed by NC State with two and Maryland one. The Tar Heels claimed NCAA titles in 1957, 1982, 1993, 2005 and 2009, while the Blue Devils won their fourth title in 2010, following earlier championships in 2001, 1992 and 1991. The Wolfpack walked away with the coveted crown in 1974 and 1983 while the Terps claimed the 2002 national title.

    The ACC has 10 or more NCAA Tournament wins 13 times overall, and the league has not posted a losing record in NCAA Tournament play since 1987. The conference’s 23-year non-losing streak in NCAA Tournament play is tops among all conferences. Since 1981, the ACC has produced 38 consensus All-Americans – 15 more than any other conference and has accounted for 25 percent of the nation’s consensus All-Americans (38-of-155). Seven of the last 14 and nine of the last 18 consensus National Players of the Year have been from the ACC. Since 1975, the ACC has had 16 consensus National Players of the Year – 12 more than any other conference. In addition, nine of the ACC’s 16 National Players of the Year were unanimous selections.

    A year ago the ACC had 52 players on NBA rosters. In addition, over the past fi ve years 45 ACC players have made their NBA debuts, including an all-time high 15 in 2006.

    In this past June’s 2010 NBA draft, the ACC had five first round selections and nine players drafted overall. The ACC has had five-or-more fi rst round selections in three of the past four years and has had at least one fi rst-round pick in 22 consecutive NBA drafts. Since 1986, the ACC has had 93 fi rst round selections – 13 more than any other conference.

    Last year, for the second time in four years, 10 ACC teams fi nished the season with 20 or more wins. The ACC is the only conference in Division I history to have 10 teams win 20 or more games in a single season. For the fi fth-straight year, the ACC surpassed the 2.2 million mark in attendance as the 12 schools totaled 2,217,642 over 201 regular season games and six ACC Tournament sessions.


    The conference conducts championship competition in 25 sports – 12 for men and 13 for women.

    The fi rst ACC championship was held in swimming on February 25, 1954. The conference did not conduct championships in cross country, wrestling or tennis during the first year.

    The 12 sports for men include football, cross country, soccer, basketball, swimming, indoor and outdoor track, wrestling, baseball, tennis, golf and lacrosse. Fencing, which was started in 1971, was discontinued in 1981.

    Championships for women are currently conducted in cross country, volleyball, fi eld hockey, soccer, basketball, swimming, indoor and outdoor track, tennis, golf, lacrosse, softball and rowing.


    The Atlantic Coast Conference was founded on May 8, 1953, at the Sedgefi eld Inn near Greensboro, N.C., with seven charter members – Clemson, Duke, Maryland, North Carolina, North Carolina State, South Carolina and Wake Forest – drawing up the conference by-laws.

    The withdrawal of seven schools from the Southern Conference came early on the morning of May 8, 1953, during the Southern Conference’s annual spring meeting. On June 14, 1953, the seven members met in Raleigh, N.C., where a set of bylaws was adopted and the name became offi cially the Atlantic Coast Conference.

    Suggestions from fans for the name of the new conference appeared in the region’s newspapers prior to the meeting in Raleigh. Some of the names suggested were: Dixie, Mid South, Mid Atlantic, East Coast, Seaboard, Colonial, Tobacco, Blue-Gray, Piedmont, Southern Seven and the Shoreline.

    Duke’s Eddie Cameron recommended that the name of the conference be the Atlantic Coast Conference, and the motion was passed unanimously. The meeting concluded with each member institution assessed $200.00 to pay for conference expenses.


    May 8, 1953 ACC formed with Clemson College, Duke University, University of Maryland, University of North Carolina, North Carolina State College and Wake Forest College as charter members.

    December 4, 1953 University of Virginia admitted as the league’s eighth member.

    June 30, 1971 University of South Carolina tenders resignation from league membership.

    April 3, 1978 Georgia Institute of Technology admitted as the league’s eighth member.

    July 1, 1991 Florida State University admitted as the league’s ninth member.

    July 1, 2004 The league expands to 11 members with the addition of Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University and the University of Miami.

    October 17, 2005 Boston College admitted as the league’s 12th member starting with the 2005-06 academic year. On December 4, 1953, conference offi cials met again at Sedgefi eld and offi cially admitted the University of Virginia as the league’s eighth member. The fi rst, and only, withdrawal of a school from the ACC came on June 30, 1971, when the University of South Carolina tendered its resignation. The ACC operated with seven members until April 3, 1978, when the Georgia Institute of Technology was admitted. The Atlanta school had withdrawn from the Southeastern Conference in January of 1964. The ACC expanded to nine members on July 1, 1991, with the addition of Florida State University. The conference expanded to 11 members on July 1, 2004, with the addition of the University of Miami and Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. On October 17, 2003, Boston College accepted an invitation to become the league’s 12th member starting with the 2005-06 academic year.


    BOSTON COLLEGE — Charter member of the Big East Conference in 1979; joined the ACC in July, 2005.

    CLEMSON — Charter member of the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Association in 1894; a charter member of the Southern Conference in 1921; a charter member of the ACC in 1953.
    DUKE — Joined the Southern Conference in December, 1928; charter member of the ACC in 1953.FLORIDA STATE — Charter member of the Dixie Conference in 1948; joined the Metro Conference in July, 1976; joined the ACC July, 1991.GEORGIA TECH — Charter member of the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Association in 1894; charter member of Southern Conference in 1921; charter member of the SEC in 1932; joined the ACC in April, 1978.MARYLAND — Charter member of the Southern Conference in 1921; charter member of the ACC in 1953.MIAMI — Charter member of the Big East Football Conference in 1991; joined the ACC in July, 2004.NORTH CAROLINA — Charter member of the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Association in 1894; charter member of the Southern Conference in 1921; charter member of the ACC in 1953.NC STATE — Charter member of the Southern Conference in 1921; charter member of the ACC in 1953.VIRGINIA — Charter member of the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Association in 1894; charter member of the Southern Conference in 1921; resigned from Southern Conference in December 1936; joined the ACC in December, 1953.VIRGINIA TECH — Charter member of the Southern Conference in 1921; withdrew from the Southern Conference in June, 1965; became a charter member of the Big East Football Conference in Feb. 5, 1991; joined the ACC in July, 2004.WAKE FOREST — Joined the Southern Conference in February, 1936; charter member of the ACC in 1953.


    Boston College was founded in 1863 by the Society of Jesus to serve the sons of Boston’s Irish immigrants and was the fi rst institution of higher education to be founded in the city of Boston. Originally located on Harrison Avenue in the South End of Boston, the College outgrew its urban setting toward the end of its fi rst fi fty years. A new location was selected in Chestnut Hill and ground for the new campus was broken on June 19, 1909. During the 1940s, new purchases doubled the size of the main campus.

    Clemson University is nestled in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains near the Georgia border, and the tiger paws painted on the roads make the return to I-85 easier. The school is built around Fort Hill, the plantation home of John C. Calhoun, Vice President to Andrew Jackson. His son-in-law, Tom Clemson, left the land to be used as an agricultural school, and in 1893 Clemson opened its doors as a land-grant school, thanks to the efforts of Ben Tillman.

    Duke University was founded in 1924 by tobacco magnate James B. Duke as a memorial to his father, Washington Duke. Originally the school was called Trinity College, a Methodist institution, started in 1859. In 1892, Trinity moved to west Durham where the east campus with its Georgian architecture now stands. Nearby are Sarah P. Duke gardens, and further west the Gothic spires of Duke chapel overlook the west campus.

    Florida State University is one of 11 universities of the State University System of Florida. It was established as the Seminary West of the Suwannee by an act of the Florida Legislature in 1851, and fi rst offered instruction at the post-secondary level in 1857. Its Tallahassee campus has been the site of an institution of higher education longer than any other site in the state. In 1905, the Buckman Act reorganized higher education in the state and designated the Tallahassee school as the Florida Female College. In 1909, it was renamed Florida State College for Women. In 1947, the school returned to a co-educational status, and the name was changed to Florida State University.

    Next to I-85 in downtown Atlanta stands Georgia Institute of Technology, founded in 1885. Its fi rst students came to pursue a degree in mechanical engineering, the only one offered at the time. Tech’s strength is not only the red clay of Georgia, but a restored gold and white 1930 model A Ford Cabriolet, the offi cial mascot. The old Ford was fi rst used in 1961, but a Ramblin’ Wreck had been around for over three decades. The Ramblin’ Wreck fi ght song appeared almost as soon as the school opened, and it is not only American boys that grow up singing its rollicking tune, for Richard Nixon and Nikita Krushchev sang it when they met in Moscow in 1959.

    The University of Maryland opened in 1856 as an agricultural school nine miles north of Washington, D.C., on land belonging to Charles Calvert, a descendant of Lord Baltimore, the state’s founding father. The school colors are the same as the state fl ag: black and gold for George Calvert (Lord Baltimore) and red and white for his mother, Alice Crossland. Maryland has been called the school that Curley Byrd built, for he was its quarterback, then football coach, athletic director, assistant to the president, vice-president, and fi nally its president. Byrd also designed the football stadium and the campus layout, and suggested the nickname Terrapin, a local turtle known for its bite, when students wanted to replace the nickname Old Liners with a new one for the school.

    The University of Miami was chartered in 1925 by a group of citizens who felt an institution of higher learning was needed for the development of their young and growing community. Since the fi rst class of 560 students enrolled in the fall of 1926, the University has expanded to more than 15,000 undergraduate and graduate students from every state and more than 114 nations from around the world. The school’s colors, representive of the Florida orange tree, were selected in 1926. Orange symbolizes the fruit of the tree, green represents the leaves and white, the blossoms.

    The University of North Carolina, located in Chapel Hill, has been called “the perfect college town,” making its tree-lined streets and balmy atmosphere what a college should look and feel like. Its inception in 1795 makes it one of the oldest schools in the nation, and its nickname of Tar Heels stems from the tar pitch and turpentine that were the state’s principal industry. The nickname is as old as the school, for it was born during the Revolutionary War when tar was dumped into the streams to impede the advance of British forces.

    North Carolina State University is located in the state capital of Raleigh. It opened in 1889 as a land-grant agricultural and mechanical school and was known as A&M or Aggies or Farmers for over a quarter-century. The school’s colors of pink and blue were gone by 1895, brown and white were tried for a year, but the students fi nally chose red and white to represent the school. An unhappy fan in 1922 said State football players behaved like a pack of wolves, and the term that was coined in derision became a badge of honor.

    The University of Virginia was founded in 1819 by Thomas Jefferson and is one of three things on his tombstone for which he wanted to be remembered. James Madison and James Monroe were on the board of governors in the early years. The Rotunda, a half-scale version of the Pantheon which faces the Lawn, is the focal point of the grounds as the campus is called. Jefferson wanted his school to educate leaders in practical affairs and public service, not just to train teachers.

    Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University was established in 1872 as an all-male military school dedicated to the original land-grant mission of teaching agriculture and engineering. The University has grown from a small college of 132 students into the largest institution of higher education in the state. Located in Southwest Virginia on a plateau between the Blue Ridge and Alleghany Mountains, the campus consists of 334 buildings and 20 miles of sidewalks over 2,600 acres. The offi cial school colors – Chicago maroon and burnt orange – were selected in 1896 because they made a “unique combination” not worn elsewhere at the time.

    Wake Forest University was started on Calvin Jones’ plantation amid the stately pine forest of Wake County in 1834. The Baptist seminary is still there, but the school was moved to Winston-Salem in 1956 on a site donated by Charles H. and Mary Reynolds Babcock. President Harry S. Truman attended the ground-breaking ceremonies that brought a picturesque campus of Georgian architecture and painted roofs. Wake’s colors have been black and gold since 1895, thanks to a badge designed by student John Heck who died before he graduated.