Years ago I had formed a company around a system I was trying to developed. I started to pitch the idea to various educational institutions. One of my contacts put me in touch with a key principal at a university. I pitched the idea and within a week I was sent a teaming agreement for my company to work as the Developer with the university on a 3yr/$300K "Stepping Stones of Technology" grant application. Unfortunately, I was not happy with the terms of the agreement and was left with hardly any time to negotiate a new contract so I pulled out.
However, if I was to follow that process again I would first research the institutions, departments and professors that you would want to work with. Find out if they are active in applying for project grants in your field. Check the schedules and deadlines of relevant SBIR grants at http://www.sbir.gov/# and then approach the Director, Deptment head or professor directly. Even if you get interest be sure to understand the time tables involved, your responsibly and any restrictions that could come from such a project.