"As our Mountaineer fans get to know the other members, I think they'll find a lot of commonality. WVU is a big flagship public university, a land-grant university serving largely a rural constituency. That's a very apt description of most of the schools in the Big 12. Iowa State, that description applies. The two schools in Kansas, Kansas and Kansas State, that applies. The two schools in Oklahoma. Or Texas Tech."
"I'll say this: Had we remained in the Big East, more than likely we would have been in some sort of western division. The schools in that division are awfully far from Morgantown, in fact much further than the Big 12 schools.
"That's San Diego State, Boise State, SMU, Houston and Memphis. More than likely we would have been in that division with our friends from Louisville. The travel would have been just as bad, if not worse."
"You'll find very good academic institutions [in the Big 12] - institutions driven by research. I told my school president, Jim Clements, we have a tremendous opportunity on the research side to align ourselves with the University of Texas or the University of Oklahoma.
"We all know the Marcellus Shale deal is something we want to take advantage of in our state. Also we want to be environmentally sensitive as we begin the process of drilling. There are great carbon-based institutions like Texas or Oklahoma or others where we can find some real synergies in terms of research."
"After the departure of Pitt and Syracuse, I think Big East basketball will take a little bit of a hit. I can tell you Bob Huggins is very excited. When things looked like they may go south before the formal invitation to the Big 12, Hugs called me up and wanted to know what he could do to make sure the move was successful."
"In football, it will change a little bit. But I think it will change in an additive sense. We'll maintain our foothold in Florida. I think we'll maintain our presence with kids from the D.C.-Baltimore-New Jersey-Pennsylvania-Ohio areas. But I think one thing we'll add is Texas. We had four or five in this most recent class.
"I don't think our recruiting will change much in basketball, but I also think Coach Huggins will do what he did at Cincinnati. If you go back, he recruited a number of high-profile players out of Texas, like Kenyon Martin from Dallas."
"I firmly believe this move to the Big 12 can be a real benefit of the recruiting of students - not student-athletes - to WVU. As we move into the Big 12 and make ourselves known, we'll have a chance to recruit a lot of very good students. Texas exports more college students than any state in the country."
"I think it very well could continue. The Big 12 shouldn't do what the Big East did, which was sit there and be satisfied with eight teams."
Reach Mitch Vingle at 304-348-4827, mitchvin...@wvgazette.com or follow him at twitter.com/MitchVingle.