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Conference Realignment: West Virginia To File Suit To Get Out Of Big East For 2012

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According to Brett McMurphy with CBS Sports, West Virginia has informed the Big East that it will file suit to get out of the 27-month waiting period that Big East bylaws currently call for in the event that a team wishes to leave the conference. Getting out from under the 27-month waiting period would allow West Virginia to begin playing in the Big 12 next season, instead of 2014. McMurphy writes:

 

In an e-mail to the league’s presidents Monday, Big East commissioner John Marinatto wrote that "we have been advised by West Virginia league council that the University is filing suit against the Big East Conference today (Monday) – presumably to get relief from the withdrawal provision contained in our bylaws.

 

West Virginia is the latest school to announce it was leaving the Big East along with Syracuse and Pittsburgh to the ACC and TCU to the Big 12.

 

The Big East has a 27-month notification period to leave and Marinatto has said multiple times Pittsburgh and Syracuse can’t leave for the ACC until June 1, 2014. Other league sources have said the Big East has no plans of letting West Virginia leave the league before June 1, 2014 and were surprised the Mountaineers announced they were joining the Big 12 in 2012.

 

 

According to Hoppy Kercheval, the lawsuit will argue that the commissioner failed to provide leadership for the conference, and that the conference was in breach of its fiduciary responsibilities, partly because the conference will likely lose its automatic qualifying status in the BCS. West Virginia is alone in the lawsuit, but its results will have implications for Syracuse and Pittsburgh, both also are seeking to leave the conference in 2012.