West Virginia is also on the hook for a $500,000 buyout for canceling a game at Florida State next season. There appears a chance that could be mitigated, however, depending upon the opponent FSU finds to replace the Mountaineers. Then again, Florida State officials have also made rumblings about filing suit against WVU for additional damages if a suitable replacement cannot be found.
As for the settlement with the Big East, those details still remain sketchy and some details and paperwork still must be worked out. But the basic agreement, according to WVU sources and those elsewhere, is that the Big East will get $20 million.
West Virginia sources have told the Gazette that West Virginia's "cash settlement'' to the Big East will be $11 million. Where the remaining $9 million comes from is unclear, although the Big 12 has expressed a willingness in recent weeks to consider helping with the tab. If the Big 12 does pitch in, a portion of it could come in the form of a direct payment on behalf of the Big 12 and/or its member schools and a portion could be in the form of a loan to WVU that would be repaid in the future, perhaps through reduced shares in Big 12 revenue sharing.
West Virginia is already on a gradual revenue sharing track with the Big 12 as part of its membership agreement. The school will receive a 50 percent share in the first year, rising to 67 percent in the second year, 85 percent in the third year and 100 percent in the fourth year.
Still, even the 50 percent share in the first year is expected to be in the same ballpark as the approximate $7 million WVU now receives from the Big East.
There also exists the possibility that some of the $9 million given to the Big East above and beyond WVU's $11 million cash settlement could come in the form of current payments due West Virginia from the Big East that could be withheld, including but not limited to Bowl Championship Series revenue from the 2011 football season.
Reach Dave Hickman at 304-348-1734 or dphickm...@aol.com or follow him at Twitter.com/dphickman1.