By Bob Hertzel
Times West Virginian
West Virginia has been invited to join the Big 12 and accepted the invitation. An annoucement from the league is expected Friday afternoon.
While there has been no official confirmation from either West Virginia or Big 12 officials, Big East spokesman John Pacquette has informed the league of its intention to withdraw. The Mountaineers will have to pay a $5 million withdrawal fee.
It remains up in the air when the Mountaineers will begin play in the Big 12. The Big East has a 27-month waiting period before a team can leave but it’s doubtful they want to play more than two years with three lame duck teams, Pittsburgh and Syracuse also being in that situation after jumping to the Atlantic Coast Conference.
West Virginia will go into the Big 12 alone, without any offer having been extended to Louisville, which had made a strong last-minute push to either replace WVU as the league’s choice or join the Mountaineers to make it an 11-team conference.
The Big 12 has had to reconfigure due to the loss of Nebraska, Colorado and Texas A&M. Missouri, it appears, is leaving the Big 12 and going to the SEC.