"Over the past 18 months, our Conference has been involved in an intense and thorough strategic planning evaluation on the long-term direction of the ACC," said Barker. "The priorities of this evaluation have been academic compatibility, commitment to student-athlete welfare, long-term financial stability and national athletic excellence.
"Today, our member institutions reached agreement to begin formal discussions with Boston College, the University of Miami and Syracuse University to join the Atlantic Coast Conference. These three institutions represent and share the values for which the ACC has long been known."
Further action on expansion will follow on-site visits and discussions with these institutions in accordance with the ACC by-laws. A proposal submitted by the University of Virginia to include Virginia Tech in the expansion to 12 schools fell short of the necessary votes.