Now that the regular season is over for the Mountaineer football team and we've locked up a BCS bowl game, we can take a breath and look at who sued who this week. I mean, sure there's bowl news already. Flipper picked us to win the Orange Bowl. So we've got that going for us....which is nice.
Looking to the future, specifically next season, the Mountaineers need an answer sooner rather than later on if they will be in the Big 12 or Big East. Mostly for scheduling reasons for West Virginia and the teams currently on next year's schedule. We've seen the impact of teams leaving a conference as it relates to schedules. So it's only fair that this be resolved soon so everyone can get on with their football lives.
Just to recap, here's the time line of who sued who. October 31st WVU sues the Big East. The Big East counter-sued WVU November 4th. WVU files a motion to dismiss the Big East's suit against West Virginia November 30th. December 5th, the Big East files a motion to dismiss West Virginia's suit. Maybe it's just me, but someone seems to be proactive and someone seems to be reactive. It's kind of a new role for West Virginia. But being a few steps behind everyone else is something the Big East has excelled at for years.
In a perfect world, Oliver Luck and John Marinatto would duke it out in a televised hearing presided over by Rece Davis. I have no doubt how this would turn out.
In the real world, things are much different. Take what I'm about to say with a grain of salt. My only legal experience was a Business Law class in college. The attorney that taught the class only showed up three or four times all semester (Hell yeah I got an A!). The Big East is in the enviable position of not having to do much of anything but stall for time and shoot down accusations made by West Virginia.
It (WVU) sued the Big East in Morgantown, arguing the conference had violated its fiduciary responsibility to members by failing to balance the number of football-playing and non-football schools...WVU has offered no legal foundation for why it should be excused from the agreement, the Big East said. Complaints of "impossibility, impracticability, frustration of purpose ... do not constitute causes of action.
If this was a marriage, we could probably whip out the irreconcilable differences card and get away with it. But it isn't, and from where I stand I don't see that we have a real chance of winning this outright. It's more likely that we are looking for some sort of settlement that gets us into the Big 12 quicker than the 27 month wait or less expensively. I'm leaning on the former as the buyout isn't really all that much more than what Rodriguez paid us.
The Big East is a sinking ship that would have settled to the bottom a long time ago if it weren't for West Virginia University. Other schools have stepped up for a year or two, but there's only been one constant in this conference since the first ACC raid.
So while there's probably no legal justification for what we are attempting to do, the time has long since past that West Virginia should be joined with schools that match the Mountaineer's commitment to winning. The landscape of college football demands this. But the Big East always has been and always will be a basketball conference. Everything else is just a distraction. If anything else was true, there wouldn't have been a first ACC raid.