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Judge Says $50M ACC Lawsuit Against UMD Will Go Forward

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It may be more difficult, and expensive, to get out of the ACC than University of Maryland officials thought.
Seth Sawyers: http://www.flickr.com/photos/sidewalk_flying/425837225/
It may be more difficult, and expensive, to get out of the ACC than University of Maryland officials thought.

A North Carolina judge declined to dismiss a lawsuit filed against the University of Maryland by the Atlantic Coast Conference for choosing to leave the ACC for the Big Ten effective in 2014.

The ACC sued the school in November to make it pay its $52 million exit fee. Maryland sued the ACC last month in a Maryland court, calling the fee invalid.

Maryland lawyer Alex Barrett argued that a North Carolina court has no jurisdiction over Maryland, and because the school is an arm of the state, it enjoys sovereign immunity that protects it from lawsuits.

ACC attorney Alan Duncan countered that in North Carolina, sovereign immunity doesn't exist in contractual claims.

Both Barrett and Duncan declined comment.

Maryland's decision to leave the conference was widely seen as a financial one, as the Big Ten offers a larger share of revenues. The school cut several sports programs last year because of budget shortfalls.

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