Thursday, October 27, 2011

Conference Realignment 2011: The WVU, Big XII Timeline

In case you missed anything from the last two days, here is an attempt to try to timeline everything that has happened.


-New York Post first broke the news that WVU was set to leave for the Big XII.

-Several media outlets started to pick up the story, including CBS Sports. Brett McMurphy reported the same thing, that WVU was in if Missouri was out. This certainly felt concrete, considering McMurphy has been all over realignment from the start.

-Pete Thamel of the New York Times followed that with the news that WVU "applied and was accepted" to the Big XII.

-Later in the day the news came out that it was essentially a "done deal", and that a press conference was scheduled for Wednesday.

-And then all hell broke loose. Starting with the statement from WVU Athletics that there would be no press conference on Wednesday.


-WVU fans woke up to disturbing news. The Dominion Post was reporting that Louisville made a late push, and the Big XII basically told WVU to sit tight.

-Later in the morning, used the Post article, and went further saying that the Big XII "needed more information".

-The opened up a whole pile of rumors, many saying that Sen. (and Louisville Grad) Mitch McConnell (R-Ken) had influenced the Big XII's decision in some way. However, there were no concrete stories to prove this, until...

-Pete Thamel of the New York Times dropped a bomb regarding the situation, and said it's "too close to call" between WVU and Louisville. He also wrote that numerous sources claim that McConnell had contacted OU President, David Boren, a former senator, and others to "push" the Louisville cause.

-Well, you knew the WV senators wouldn't let that go, so statements from both Joe Manchin and Jay Rockefeller, as well a Rep Shelly Moore Capito were released condemning the alleged actions of McConnell. Manchin took it a step further by even suggesting an investigation! You can find all the statements on

-Rockefeller ended up speaking to Boren and others about the situation, while Manchin took to the mic to voice his concern.

-Numerous tweets throughout the night gave WVU the lead, while others said Louisville. However, the most interesting may have come from Chuck Charlton from the Dallas Morning News, who tweeted "Because of the messy, awkward situation, two sources say Big 12 might consider Louisville and WVU together as a compromise."


-This morning has been relatively quiet, but it's early.

-USA Today is reporting that WVU may still be the frontrunner, with a decision possibly coming before the weekend.

-Brett McMurphy also laid out how close WVU was to already being a member of the Big XII. And, yes...very close.

-Jenn Menendez of the PPG writes about Manchin's appearance on MSNBC this morning. Manching said it "was a "done deal" before the move stalled."

-According to Dennis Dodd(CBS), all three senators have been lobbying their fight to Boren for weeks.

-Stay Tuned...much more to come!

Conference Realignment 2011: A Sad Day For College Sports

Where to begin...

It's amazing how pure joy can turn to utter madness in the span of about 24 hours, but that's exactly what happened to the Mountaineer faithful. Tuesday was one of the better days in recent memory, when we were told that WVU had been accepted to the Big XII and a press conference was scheduled for Wednesday. Unfortunately, it all came crashing down starting Tuesday night with the news that the presser was postponed, and by Wednesday morning all hell broke loose.

Yesterday essentially turned into one of the most absurd days in recent that makes you embarrassed by sports and the human race. The stories of political influence started to take over, with seemingly everyone having their own take of what the outcome may look like, and how much influence is coming from both sides.

It's absolutely sick, really. Nobody wants congress getting involved...I'm certain that's the last thing we need.

Is Louisville to blame for all of this? Of course not! They are just doing what WVU would be doing if this was turned the other way. Louisville understands how important it is to get out of the sinking Big East. And, I hope the Big XII eventually invites them too. It would be a short trip for WVU fans, and an ongoing rivalry.

The major blame has to go the Big XII's way. If you believe that all the reports were true that WVU was verbally accepted and a presser was scheduled (and I do believe it considering nobody denied anything on Tuesday), then this is all on the leadership of a conference that really can't afford to be unstable. The last thing the Big XII needs is more dissension moving forward, considering some of those schools could still take off on the drop of a dime.

Even with this instability I certainly hope WVU gets in. The Big XII chaos still pales in comparison to what is happening in the Big East. It would just feel a bit better if WVU felt a little more welcome. But, at this point I guess beggars can't be choosers.