Athletic Director Jack Swarbrick (L) of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish talks with head coach Brian Kelly before a college football game against the University of Pittsburgh Panthers at Heinz Field on September 24, 2011 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Notre Dame defeated the Pitt Panthers 15-12. (Photo by George Gojkovich/Getty Images) (George Gojkovich / May 13, 2014)
AMELIA ISLAND - Notre Dame is set to begin its second season in the Atlantic Coast Conference - in all sports except football - and according to the school's athletic director, the overall process has been good.
Jack Swarbrick was at the ACC spring meetings at the Ritz-Carlton in Amelia Islando this week and said while there have certainly been challenges, the school couldn't be happier with the process.
Here are some other topics, Swarbrick discussed:
On the ACC’s decision to recommend sticking with the current eight-game football format
“I don’t participate in any of the football decisions. I’m not even in the room.”
On the value of playing an eight-or-nine game conference schedule in the new College Football Playoff
“I think the committee has been fairly clear and [College Football Playoff Executive Director] Bill [Hancock] has that you’ll be able to evaluate strength of schedule independent of that question, it’s who you play. It’s what you do. It’s how strong a conference is in any particular year. It’s what you do in those other games. I have no idea how the committee will ultimately measure it. But they’ve been pretty clear that there is no one way or one approach.”
On Notre Dame’s first season in the ACC
“It’s been spectacular. It’s just a challenge to figure out how to make the integration work. The patience everybody has demonstrated and the good-will has just been unbelievable. We’ve been so pleased. The thing I heard over-and-over again from our coaches was the challenge of having every trip being a new trip this year. You get used to everything from the hotel, to the venue to scouting and you had to learn it all. We did fine, but it was trial by fire.”
On his and Notre Dame’s involvement in NCAA governance issue
“I think everybody is very engaged. We all have … as you look forward for your own program, it’s the prism through which you evaluate the NCAA governance and what’s best for college sports and for your program. We’re not unique in that regards. Everybody is very opinionated.”
On renovations to Notre Dame Stadium
“Very positive. It’s a unique approach. Virtually no football. Psychology department, anthropology department, Urban Music department, rec center, career services. We’re building a lot into the stadium. The real estate on our campus has become too valuable over time. When Rockne built it, it was off campus. Now it’s the geographic center of campus. So you have to figure out how to use it year round.”