SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- Notre Dame says it has had talks with the Atlantic Coast Conference about the Orange Bowl.

The ACC signed a 12-year deal with the Orange Bowl last week that starts in 2014, when the postseason format changes to a four-team playoff.

The deal gives ACC members access to Orange Bowl in years the game does not host a national semifinal.

Notre Dame is interested in a deal that would give the Fighting Irish an automatic landing spot in some seasons in which they are good enough to play in a top-tier game but do not make the playoff.

A Notre Dame spokesman says in a statement athletic director Jack Swarbrick has had discussions with ACC officials "relating to the Orange Bowl" and university presidents have been consulted.

An ACC spokesperson said the talks with Notre Dame were not known to have extended beyond an Orange Bowl partnership.

Clemson coach Dabo Swinney said this last month about ACC football: "We've got to continue to build our brand from an ACC football standpoint."