COLLEGE FOOTBALL: SEP 03 Arizona at San Diego State
Getty Images

The Mountain West informed San Diego State it will not grant a one-month extension for withdrawal "at this time" as the university eyes a potential move to the Power Five level, according to ESPN. The letter -- sent Friday, June 16, as part of a heated back and forth between conference and school -- notified San Diego State that it will not approve any exceptions requested by the university, including a reduced exit fee or the ability to pay the fee in installments.

San Diego State notified the Mountain West on June 13 that it "intends to withdraw" from the conference, according to multiple reports, though university president Adela de la Torre later told the league that was not an official notice of resignation. The Aztecs, long considered a frontrunner for Pac-12 expansion, have until June 30 to submit an official resignation one year in advance of departure before exit fees more than double from $16.5 million to $34 million. Seeking an extension for the upcoming deadline, the school cited "unforeseen delays involving other collegiate athletic conferences." 

The Mountain West, however, rejected the assertion that San Diego State's intention to resign was not an official letter of resignation, potentially putting the Aztecs in a bind. 

Though San Diego State has not received any known invitations to a Power Five conference, the Aztecs have been heavily linked to the Pac-12 and, to a lesser extent, the Big 12 as realignment dominoes continue to fall. Adding San Diego State would allow the Pac-12 to retain a presence in Southern California with USC and UCLA leaving for the Big Ten in Summer 2024.

A new media deal remains elusive for the Pac-12, however, which sees its current agreement with Fox Sports and ESPN expire next year. San Diego State's extension request was directly tied to the Pac-12's media rights situation in an effort to evaluate all of its potential options. 

The Big 12 has already secured an extension of its media rights deal with the same two networks through 2031, and commissioner Brett Yormark has repeatedly voiced a desire to expand west and create a true coast-to-coast league. The Big 12 sees flagship members Oklahoma and Texas depart for the SEC next summer, coinciding with USC and UCLA's departures from the Pac-12 for the Big Ten.