ACC Increases Exit Fees To Three Times Annual Operating Budget ($50 Million)

SOUTH BEND, IN - SEPTEMBER 08: DaVaris Daniels #10 of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish breaks away after ctaching a pass against the Purdue Boilermakers at Notre Dame Stadium on September 8, 2012 in South Bend, Indiana. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

... and, you know, accepts Notre Dame as a new member for all sports except football and hockey.

In addition to extending an invitation to Notre Dame, the Council of Presidents voted to increase the conference exit fees to three times the annual operating budget. Currently this would equate to an exit fee of over $50 million.

Obviously the whole Notre Dame joining the ACC story is the headline, but the ACC's decision to increase the exit fee by nearly a factor of three is equally newsworthy.

According to the announcement, the ACC's exit fees have increased substantially from $20 million to $50 million to start, with the likelihood that the exit fee will only increase over time. The increased exit fee reportedly takes effect immediately, which means that none of the current ACC members are going anywhere, any time soon.

While this exit penalty isn't quite as binding as the Big 12 agreement that ties a program's TV media rights to the conference for a number of years, this is still a fairly iron clad agreement. The ACC, which has enjoyed a tremendous amount of stability over the years, just became that much more stable.

This should also quell those rumors about the Big 12 expanding to a number befitting the conference's namesake as three of the most often rumored expansion candidates -- Florida State, Clemson and Georgia Tech -- are seemingly now off the table.

With even more stability now in place, we will have to see just how lucrative this deal is. Will Notre Dame joining the ACC in all sports except football and hockey allow the conference to renegotiate its media rights contract with ESPN? And what will the revenue split be for Notre Dame relative to the 14 other all-sports members' take?

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