Live from the Coliseum for WVU’s encore act after winning at Notre Dame Sunday. The Mountaineers play host to No. 21 Rutgers. That’s followed by Saturday’s home game against No. 24 DePaul. Win both and the team that beat No. 14 Louisville at home before going to South Bend could have its first four-game winning streak against ranked teams. A win tonight makes it three in a row for the fourth time ever … and not once in the prior three were the three games in succession.
Now, to recap this settlement, let’s go back to the beginning…
Last Wednesday, we reported WVU was fast-tracking toward a resolution with an $11 million cash settlement and other conditions and monies likely to be involved.
A day later, I’m off doing things I do when I’m off and the legal proceedings are “continued,” a pretty solid indication the end is near. We’re also told the Big East has agreed to the terms of the proposed settlement, which got almost not attention …
… until the phone rings after 8 p.m. and we’re told it’s done and the Big East and, more importantly, WVU reached a verbal agreement/conclusion. It’s a $20 million deal and the cash settlement, we report, is once again $11 million.
This gets to be a little confusing and people speak out to say it’s not entirely accurate and is entirely confounding … and even I have to agree. I still keep hearing $11 million, but there is more and more noise that it’s a 10-10 split to get to $20 million.
Yesterday the word gets out the deal is now signed and will be announced later in the day, and that all happens with some details coming out from beneath the surface, but we still don’t know the exact stuff we want to know. That $20 million remains, but how you get there remains fuzzy.
Today FOIA delivers the goods and we see three numbers: $2.5 million, $8.5 million and $9 million. I took one math class in college and, my hand to God, addition was on the final exam. I see those three numbers and I see two more: $20 million and $11 million. Here’s how this goes now:
- WVU has already made the first $2.5 million payment on its exit fee.
- Friday the WVU Foundation and the Big 12 Transition Fund will pay the Big East $8.5 million. And three’s your $11 million.
- The $9 million is what the Big East and WVU agree is the “Forecasted Amount” WVU will earn in conference revenue in 2011-12. The Mountaineer are leaving that behind, which means, in essence, WVU is paying $9 million. There’s a chance WVU makes more than $9 million in 2011-12, in which case the Big East would pay WVU the difference.
- Now, put the $11 million and the $9 million in the same canister. It’s $20 million. Everyone — everyone — I’ve talked to says WVU is only paying $10 million … and $9 million is that Big East revenue earned and not deposited.
- The Big 12 Transition Fund gets $10 million from the Big 12. Half of that is a gift — and that “generous donor” may very well be the Big 12, which is purposely never mentioned in the settlement agreement — and half is a loan. WVU will pay that loan back beginning in 2016 and WVU will take pay it out annually over five years from its Big 12 television revenue.
- The Big 12 Transition Fund has the Big 12′s $10 million and is paying the $8.5 million Friday. The remaining $1.5 million handled interest that will add up in the $5 million loan.
Now, as for that clause in which WVU will help Pitt and Syracuse find Big 12 games … forget it. WVU couldn’t comment on it, but from what I gather after talking to a bunch of people about what I thought was the most intriguing part of the settlement is that it was a courtesy, a gesture, a sign WVU could still be a good neighbor. Nothing more.
I wouldn’t make a big deal out of it … and mostly because the Big East did not. Check this from Pitt’s Senior Athletic Director for Media Relations, E.J. Borghetti, on Wednesday, the last day Pitt and Syracuse could ask for WVU’s help scheduling a Big 12 game: “We have only heard these reports through media outlets and have not been given any documentation from the Big East regarding its settlement with West Virginia.”