Pete Thamel of the New York Times reports that the West Virginia Mountaineers, who are about to bolt the Big East for the Big 12 conference, are negotiating with the Big East about leaving the conference after this academic year.
WVU President on BE buyout: “Our team and their team are in discussions about how we make that happen.”
Some of the nuts and bolts of WVU’s departure are covered here, but essentially, the Big East requires a $5 million buyout, of which WVU has already paid $2.5 million. The problem is that even that the Big East requires that departing schools give 27 months notice, and West Virginia wants to leave the conference next summer. So the Mountaineers will have to negotiate an additional fee with the conference. Mike Casazza describes the $2.5 million payout the Mountaineers have already made as a sort of gesture of goodwill as they begin negotiations.
For more on WVU’s switch to the Big 12, head over to the Smoking Musket.