MORGANTOWN - West Virginia scored by moving from the Big East to the Big 12. And on Sunday, perhaps appropriately, the school celebrated that move at Touchdown Terrace at Puskar Stadium.
On the first official day as a Big 12 member, WVU's athletic program hosted a private party that included Mountaineer athletes, coaches, administrators, the Mountaineer mascot and new Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby. The latter had attended a similar celebration Saturday night at TCU, also a new conference member.
"I went to the [school president Jim Clements'] house and got a little tour of that," Bowlsby said. "I got a gorgeous view of Morgantown from his home. Then Coach [Bob] Huggins and Oliver Luck came over and we spent a little time speaking of all things West Virginia and all things Big 12.
"It's been a whirlwind tour. At 1 a.m. [Sunday] I was at Billy Bob's in Texas. We were shooting off fireworks with the folks at TCU. So it was a little bit of a short night."
WVU athletic director Luck, Clements and Bowlsby all spoke at a ceremony and Bowlsby was presented with a WVU hat and shirt.
"I have to take advantage of this," Bowlsby said while tugging on the hat. "After this I have to be impartial."
The day, however, was all about celebration.
"It's a historic day for the institution," Clements said. "This is big-time. I think as time goes on, people will see how big this is. We're in a true power conference now."
"I just think the two institutions getting into the league are off-the-charts positive for us," Bowlsby said. "WVU is a terrific addition to the league. I know the folks around here are excited about it, but we're really excited to have this institution involved, competitively, academically, in every way. The same thing with TCU. I think it's enormously positive to have a high-quality institution right in the city where the headquarters are, in the state where the largest number of conference members are.
"This is a great weekend for us. There's a lot of excitement and enthusiasm on campus, but there's also a lot of excitement and enthusiasm in the conference office, as well."
Bowlsby spoke of the league's turnaround from a year ago, in which many believed it on the verge of extinction.