Blog Entry

Big East, WVU near $20 million settlement

Posted on: February 8, 2012 4:07 pm
Edited on: February 8, 2012 9:15 pm

West Virginia and the Big East Conference are nearing agreement on a settlement worth at least $20 million that would resolve all issues between both parties, college football industry sources told

The Mountaineers will join the Big 12 for the 2012-13 school year. However, in a bizarre twist, sources told that West Virginia officials have contacted future Big East members to see if one could join in 2012 instead of 2013.

The reason is that with West Virginia’s departure to the Big 12, the Big East will be left with only seven football members this fall. Without an immediate replacement for West Virginia, the remaining Big East schools will be scrambling to find a 12th opponent. It’s unknown why West Virginia would assist a league that WVU athletic director Oliver Luck compared to “a ship … seriously going down,” except that it could lower West Virginia’s buyout, sources said.

Luck did not immediately respond to an e-mail seeking comment.

Despite lawsuits filed by West Virginia and the Big East, West Virginia still plans to join the Big 12 this year. The Big 12 has already sent its 2012 schedule, with West Virginia on it, to its television partners and is expected to publicly release the schedule this week.

While WVU has always planned to join in 2012, Big East commissioner John Marinatto has stated on multiple occasions, including Wednesday, that the league would require West Virginia to honor the league’s 27-month exit agreement. However, sources said privately the league has conceded they can’t stop West Virginia from leaving.

The Big East, though, likely would receive substantial monetary damages. Even Florida State athletic director Randy Spetman said his school might seek liquidated damages against WVU after WVU canceled a Sept. 8 game at Florida State, the Orlando Sentinel reported.

The $20 million settlement figure is believed to be contingent on the Big East being able to get a replacement for West Virginia in 2012 and certainly could increase if it had to play with only seven members in 2012. It’s unknown if that $20 million figure includes the $5 million West Virginia paid upon notifying the Big East last October it was bolting to the Big 12.

Acting Big 12 commissioner Chuck Neinas recently told the West Virginia media that the Big 12 would consider assisting the Mountaineers financially with their exit fee, if the school asked.

Marinatto, who was on a teleconference Wednesday to announce Memphis joining the league in 2013, would not comment on whether the Big East is trying to bring in a member in 2012 or if they would help a future member financially to leave its current conference home.

“The question is related to the impending litigation we're involved in on two fronts," Marinatto said. "It would be inappropriate for me to get into specifics about all of that at this point. I'm going to not talk about that."

Boise State, San Diego State, UCF, SMU, Houston and Memphis are scheduled to join the Big East in 2013 with Navy coming on board in 2015. Marinatto added the Big East would not stage a conference championship football game until 2015 when Navy would - at least for now - become its 12th football playing member.

Also, Wednesday night, the Newark Star-Ledger reported that if the Big East does not find a replacement for West Virginia this fall, then Syracuse and Rutgers could play each other twice with both games counting in the conference standings. One game would be played at Rutgers and the second game possibly at Yankee Stadium.

Since: Oct 26, 2011
Posted on: February 9, 2012 9:23 am

Big East, WVU near $20 million settlement

;     &nbs
p;     &nb
sp;      The Conference Blow ups are just about over.ESPN got what they wanted,now you get to see the damage.Like your case.Tell me what The ACC did back in 2005 is better for you just took a weak conference and made it weaker,and that was hard to do.Then you took 2 more weak sisters for football.The ATLANTIC CHOKE CONFERENCE is getting what it deserves,because they started all this bull shit.JOHN THE SWINE SWOFFORD WILL BE FIRED IN LESS THAN 5 YEARS.HE TOOK A GOOD AND DECENT CONFERENCE AND MADE IT THE LAUGHTING STOCK OF COLLEGE SPORTS.2 AND 13 IN BCS GAMES.This was suppoosed to be about football,NOW YOUR CONFERENCE IS A JOKE.LET ALONE WHAT WE DID TO CLEMSON.BUT THE VIRGINIA TECH CHOKIES COULDN'T BEAT A SO SO MICHIGAN TEAM IN A BCS GAME IN ACC COUNTRY.YOU GUYS NEED TO KEEP MOUTH SHUT MOST OF ALL.

Since: Aug 13, 2011
Posted on: February 9, 2012 9:21 am

Big East, WVU near $20 million settlement

@RodneyTaint: You were correct that the Big 12 was a sinking ship, but the addition of West Virginia in 2012 has plugged the holes. If the rumors are true ( that the Big 12 is talking to other schools from the ACC, specifically Clemson and Florida State about future membership in the Big 12, I don't see the ACC being among the four future Super Conferences you identified. I do see the Big 12 / Big 14 being there. Just speculation.

Since: Oct 23, 2011
Posted on: February 9, 2012 9:14 am

Big East, WVU near $20 million settlement

WVU 93  Brings up a good point about WVU may not have excepted a ACC invite. i have had some thoughts about that. 
As for myself, i never wanted to see WVU in the ACC, and i have posted that since the beginning of this last round of expansion. The ACC fans will tell you that WVU was denied a invite. When in truth it was reported the the inquiry for a invite came from a outside source. Which was probably ESPN.
Shortly after this it was reported that Oliver Luck had attended a Big 12 meeting. And i wondered at that time, what was Luck doing at a Big 12 meeting. If Luck knew at that time there was a chance that WVU may could get into the Big 12, he would had turn down the ACC invite. Plus we were in the discussions of a possible SEC invite. Luck would have never took a ACC invite till he knew for sure that the SEC would not take WVU. I know a lot of WVU fans wanted to see WVU in the ACC, but I'm not convince that the WVU officials were all that high on joining the ACC. Remember WVU has had hard feelings toward the ACC ever since the first ACC expansion.

Since: Dec 22, 2011
Posted on: February 9, 2012 9:04 am

Big East, WVU near $20 million settlement

Uh- no!

Since: Dec 22, 2011
Posted on: February 9, 2012 9:02 am

Big East, WVU near $20 million settlement

In all truthfulness, the BE should be paying their football playing schools for the damages they have imposed.  The BE continual bias to their basketball conference left the football playing schools hanging.  It's insane to have a "BCS" conference that is unwilling to attempt meaningful expansion beyond 8-schools.  The departure of Miami, VT, and BC to the ACC should have been a lesson, but the BE continued to ignore the plight of their FB playing schools.  It is a bit ironic that it took a second departure of Pitt, Cuse, and WVU for them to realize that they had to expand their football conference.  By this time, it was too late as they will look like Conference USA.  I'm sure WVU will end up paying the BE some money.  They are moving on to the Big 12 in 2013 as a good faith effort to their new conference who needs them on the schedule to maintain their network contract.  The Big 12 currently does not have enough teams without WVU to meet the terms of their TV agreement.  I wouldn't be surprised to see the Big 12 provide finanical assistance to WVU.  You have to feel bad for the remnant of BE schools that play FB.  They have been shafted by their own conferences lack of leadership.

Since: Dec 16, 2011
Posted on: February 9, 2012 8:55 am

Big East, WVU near $20 million settlement

The ACC didn't want WVU or they would have had them. The Big XII is a sinking ship just like the Big East. They had to add teams and fast. WVU was a sure thing so they grabbed them. The Big XII will continue to get raided by the Big 10, SEC and Pac 10 over the next few seasons leaving schools like WVU in the same situation they were in in the Big East. Five years from now there will be 4 super conferences Pac 10, Big 10, SEC and ACC and WVU will be back to being and independent.

Since: Jun 3, 2011
Posted on: February 9, 2012 8:43 am

Big East, WVU near $20 million settlement

The ACC needs to take a deep breath and look at the big picture, any team that you've attracted to your conference from the Big East will soon be pursued by other conferences, turnabout is fair play.  Clemson, FSU, and Georgia Tech are once again in recruiting and TV markets  that will be attractive to the SEC and Big 12.  You tried to kill the Big East and make yourself better, in a roundabout way it may soon end up killing you, maybe you should've approached WVU when you came to get Pitt and Syracuse, not that we would've accepted we have greener pastures ahead we're still relevant are you.

Since: Oct 23, 2011
Posted on: February 9, 2012 8:41 am

Big East, WVU near $20 million settlement

Hey Billytango  I totally agree with your comment. And wanted to also add that WVU also has a good following in the DC Market. I have family and friends that live there and near DC. And they have told me that the DC market is divide between, Maryland, Virginia, VT, and WVU. Even in Southwest Virginia there is a sizable WVU following. I live just outside of Charlotte NC and i think a lot of people would be surprise at the number of WVU fans in an around the Charlotte and Western Carolina region. What a lot of people don't understand is that is it not just the WVU TV market size, it is that WVU is a TV media draw, they draw a lot of interest of their games from other fans and especially fans up & down the Eastern Seaboard. ESPN knows this, so does the Big 12 officials.     
PS:  Hey guys, don't be to hard on Buford IQ 62 he is just ignorant and doesn't know any better. His jealousy of WVU has deteriorated his mind. 

Since: Jan 22, 2012
Posted on: February 9, 2012 8:39 am

Big East, WVU near $20 million settlement

Let's refocus one the subject and not let this degenerate into an S.E.C. chat room. :)
SEC SEC SEC!!  We're #1! We're #1!  Oh wait... what?  :)  I couldn't resist...

Since: Jan 22, 2012
Posted on: February 9, 2012 8:37 am

Big East, WVU near $20 million settlement

Uh, did you read the article?  WVU is only getting out early by paying around $20 mil.  Syracuse and Pitt would have to do the same thing to get out prior to 2014. 
Exactly. If you believe Pitt's AD, then SU and Pitt already passed at that offer. They can afford to wait, WVU can't.

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