The Big 12 was in Morgantown to officially welcome West Virginia to the conference and interim commissioner Chuck Neinas says he fully expects the Mountaineers to join the Big 12 next season. The Big East says it plans to hold West Virginia to their contract which requires a 27 month waiting period before leaving the conference. As a result, West Virginia filed a lawsuit against the Big East.
Meanwhile Missouri still waits in the balance for word from the SEC. All signs certainly point to Missouri moving on. The Big 12 has omitted Missouri from its roster of schools for 2012. There was the SEC website mix up that posted a story last Thursday during game six of the World Series stating the SEC accepted Missouri (the story was written to be released this past Monday). And, MU Chancellor Brady Deaton was set to leave for a conference in India on Monday, but delayed those travel plans.
Even though most seem to be ready to move on, all of these schools and conferences remain bound together. From various media reports and interviews I’ve read, the SEC will not bring along a school that would cause problems for the conference it leaves. Neinas said it is important for the Big 12 to have West Virginia on board because it would guarantee 10 teams which it needs to meet television contract requirements. Unless the Big East is able to get a majority of the six news schools it is hoping to attract (Boise State, Air Force, Navy, SMU, Houston and Central Florida) look for that conference to fight to keep WVU so that it can remain a viable BCS conference.
In order for conference realignment to happen, one of the dominoes needs to fall. If the Big East lands Boise State and a couple of other schools and decides to let WVU leave, that allows the SEC to accept Missouri without causing a financial and/or scheduling crisis for the Big 12.