ACC Announces Future Championship Games

The Atlantic Coast Conference has awarded its future Football Championship Games to Tampa Bay and to Charlotte, John Swofford, the Commissioner of the ACC, announced Wednesday.

Swofford announced that the league has awarded its football title game to Tampa Bay for the 2008 and 2009 seasons and to Charlotte for the 2010 and 2011 seasons. The decision was reached unanimously Wednesday morning on a conference call of the league's athletics directors and faculty athletics representatives which culminated a seven-month bid and selection process which began last June.

The sequencing of the cities was largely influenced by a city-wide convention in Charlotte in 2008, which limited access to key Uptown hotels and ancillary event areas. The awarding of the Championship Game for four years allowed the Conference to meet each city's request to host the event for a consecutive two-year period.

"We are extremely excited about the future of the ACC Football Championship game at these sites," said Swofford. "Both Tampa Bay and Charlotte are tremendous destinations in terms of their football venue, community support and partnership with the Atlantic Coast Conference. Both locations have outstanding leadership as well as surrounding communities that have embraced the opportunity to continue the growth of our championship game."

The ACC's Football Championship Games on December 6, 2008 and December 5, 2009 will be held at Raymond James Stadium, home of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers of the National Football League, the Outback Bowl, as well as Super Bowls XXXV (2001) and XLIII (2009).

"We are excited about the opportunity to not only host, but to also grow this game to a level that's befitting of the Atlantic Coast Conference," said Jeff Adams, Chairman of the Tampa Bay Sports Commission. "Based on the overwhelming support we have received from the Tampa Bay community, we are confident that we will meet and exceed the ACC's expectations."

The Conference's title games on December 4, 2010 and December 3, 2011 will be held at Bank of America Stadium, home of the NFL's Carolina Panthers and the Meineke Car Care Bowl.

"Charlotte is delighted to have been chosen to host the 2010 and 2011 ACC Football Championship Games," said Tim Newman, CEO of the Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority.

"With many amenities coming on line by 2010 including the NASCAR Hall of Fame and several new hotels and entertainment venues within walking distance of Bank of America Stadium, ACC fans will have a great time in Charlotte for those games.

"We wish Tampa Bay much success for 2008 and 2009 and look forward to bringing the Championship to a great centralized location for all ACC Fans in 2010 and 2011. Many fans will get a preview of what Charlotte now offers when we host the 2008 ACC Men's Basketball Championship next March."

The first three Dr Pepper ACC Football Championship Games were held in Jacksonville, Fla.

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