Print and Go Back ESPN.com: NCF Nation [Print without images]

Monday, February 6, 2012
Boise State: Too late to join for 2012

By Andrea Adelson

With the looming departure of West Virginia, many of you wondered whether it was feasible for the Big East to add one of its new schools in time for the 2012 season.

Boise State president Bob Kustra has an answer for you: too late.

In an interview with The Idaho Statesman, Kustra said, "I can't imagine how anyone can pull that off. We would never want to pull it off in a fashion that dealt shabbily with our existing partners in the Mountain West. I don't think that could ever work."

Jon Wilner of the San Jose Mercury News tweeted last week, citing a source, that Boise State was under pressure to join the Big East for 2012, presumably to make up for the likely loss of West Virginia. Yes, there are dueling lawsuits still unresolved, but West Virginia has made it clear several times that it plans to join the Big 12 in time for the 2012 season no matter what.

If you think actions speak louder than words, then just take a look at West Virginia canceling its September game against Florida State as further proof that it will be leaving, no matter conference bylaws or court rulings.

Boise State agreed to join in 2013, along with San Diego State, Houston, SMU and UCF. If any of those schools leave a year earlier than scheduled, they would cause their old conferences the same headaches the Big East is dealing with right now, especially in terms of scheduling. For football-only members like Boise State and San Diego State, they would also have to make accommodations for all other sports much earlier than anticipated.

Should West Virginia go as anticipated, and no new teams join for 2012, the Big East faces the prospect of having seven football-playing members for 2012. The league is going to have to get pretty creative when it comes to scheduling if this ends up being the case.