The Big East is sticking with the 27-month notice in its bylaws for teams to leave, and West Virginia has filed suit to be in the Big 12 by July 1, 2012, its stated date of exit/arrival.
Interim commissioner Chuck Neinas told reporters at a reception in Morgantown that he believes the Mountaineers will be able to join the league next season.
Neinas, West Virginia athletic director Oliver Luck and university president James Clements were peppered with questions about the lawsuit and the timetable on the Mountaineers' Big 12 debut.
"I'm not concerned because I trust the two gentlemen on each side of me, that's why," Neinas said. ...
When Neinas was asked what happens if the Big East is successful in delaying West Virginia's quick exit, "then I guess for the first time in college football history, we'll have home and home" schedules, he joked. "Oklahoma State told me they don't want to play Oklahoma twice."
On a serious note, Neinas said: "We fully expect West Virginia will be there."
West Virginia officials understandably declined comment on the suit, but Neinas noted that the Big 12 must have a 10th member in 2012 to fulfill the inventory for the league's television contract. He also added that the league is prepared to move forward with 11 teams if Missouri stays in the Big 12 and West Virginia comes to the league next season.
He also reiterated that if Missouri leaves, West Virginia would not simply replace them in the prepared Big 12 schedule.