The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) is a nonprofit association of 1,281 institutions, conferences, organizations and individuals that organizes the athletic programs of many colleges and universities in the United States and Canada. It is headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana.
In August 1973, the current three-division setup of Division I, Division II, and Division III was adopted by the NCAA membership in a special convention. Under NCAA rules, Division I and Division II schools can offer scholarships to athletes for playing a sport. Division III schools may not offer any athletic scholarships. Generally, larger schools compete in Division I and smaller schools in II and III. Division I football was further divided into I-A and I-AA in 1978. Subsequently the term "Division I-AAA" was briefly added to delineate Division I schools which do not field a football program at all, but that term is no longer officially used by the NCAA. In 2006, Divisions I-A and I-AA were respectively renamed the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) and Football Championship Subdivision (FCS).
The Notre Dame Fighting Irish are the varsity sports teams of the University of Notre Dame. The Fighting Irish participate in 23 NCAA Division I intercollegiate sports. The Fighting Irish participate in the NCAA's Division I in all sports, with many teams competing in the ACC. Notre Dame is one of only 15 universities in the nation that plays Division I FBS football and Division I men's ice hockey. The school colors are blue and gold and the mascot is the Leprechaun.