MIAMI GARDENS, FL - JANUARY 04: A detail of the Orange bowl trophy is seen after the West Virginia Mountaineers won 70-33 against the Clemson Tigers during the Discover Orange Bowl at Sun Life Stadium on January 4, 2012 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
The Orange Bowl and ACC are close to a deal that will pit the ACC's champion against either Notre Dame, an SEC team, or a Big Ten team.
The Orange Bowl and ACC are close to finalizing a deal that would send the ACC's champion to the Orange Bowl to face off against either Notre Dame, an SEC team, or a Big Ten team, according to an ESPN.com report.
The ACC champion, or another team from the conference if its champion qualifies for the national semifinals, will play annually in the Orange Bowl. How the ACC's opponent will be selected from Notre Dame, the SEC or Big Ten is still being determined.
The ACC and Orange Bowl would have the opportunity to take Notre Dame, if it doesn't make the national semifinals; an SEC team not in the national semifinals or Champions Bowl; or a Big Ten team not in the semifinals or Rose Bowl.
Once again, the Big East, who formerly had an automatic tie-in with the Orange Bowl from 1998-2005, is left out of the automatic qualifying picture for a BCS game.
This deal effectively insures the safety of the ACC as a conference, months after the conference was rumored to be in jeopardy.
The ACC has had a tie-in with the Orange Bowl since 1998, and will continue to have one for the foreseeable future.