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Rutgers sues Big East over exit fee, waiting period

Rutgers Announces Move to Big Ten Conference Getty Images

Of course. You know the drill by now.

Rutgers, one of two new members of the Big Ten conference, is suing the Big East in an attempt to get out paying the league’s $10 million exit fee and waiting 27 months to depart, per league bylaws. The lawsuit, filed in Middlesex County Court, was reported by courthousenews.com.

“Upon information and belief, the new withdrawal fee of $10 million arbitrarily applies to some, but not all, of the Big East football schools, and the effect is to penalize certain members if they seek to withdraw,” the complaint states.  “Moreover, the Big East’s excusal of noncompliance by Syracuse, Pittsburgh, TCU, and WVU with the 27 month notice provision of the Bylaws constitutes a waiver of this same provision with respect to Rutgers.”

“The court should accordingly enter an order declaring the Bylaws to be void and of no effect as between the parties, permitting Rutgers to withdraw from The Big East prior to July 1, 2015, or in alternative, declaring that The Big East has waived Rutgers’ obligation to abide by the 27 months notice provision and the requirement of a withdrawal fee.”

Additionally, Rutger is claiming the Big East owes it money for failing to collect nearly $40 million in withdrawal fees from the aforementioned former members. That money was supposed to be distributed among Big East member institutions. Rutgers also claims the Big East “turned a blind eye” to $1.3 million the Scarlet Knights did not receive from losing a home game against TCU.

Rutgers nor the Big East have commented on the suit.

Maryland, the other Big Ten acquisition, is also suing the ACC to try to get out of paying the conference’s $50 million exit fee.

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14 Responses to “Rutgers sues Big East over exit fee, waiting period”
  1. raysfan1 says: Dec 5, 2012 11:43 AM

    Wake me when this is over.
    –Rip van Winkle

  2. v2the4 says: Dec 5, 2012 11:50 AM

    money power and greed has ruined college sports…this is stupid…they as may well go ahead and pay the players, considering how much the coaches are getting paid and what little trickles down to the guys doing the work, the so called student athlethes..

    TCU paid $5m exit fee, even though they didnt play a game in the big east after the big 12 came calling.

    WVU paid $10M of the $20M that big east wanted and they will pay the other $10M in installments. they are paying the full fee because they didnt want to wait two years like Pitt and Cuse

    Pitt and Sryacuse both are paying $10M if Im not mistaken…thats what Rutgers should pay if they wait until 2014 to leave

  3. scalpemseminoles says: Dec 5, 2012 12:46 PM

    Nothing grinds my gears quite like when someone complains about “greed”. If sponsors or programs weren’t in this to make money (what you call “greed”), they wouldn’t be in this business at all. You can complain all you want about the “greed” in college football, but this sport wouldn’t be on tv or nearly as popular if it wasn’t for people wanting to make money. you just don’t understand the way the world works

  4. acmepackingcompany10 says: Dec 5, 2012 1:05 PM

    The Big East is straight garbage!!! They are Conference USA now and just want to hold onto these teams just so their negotiations for their TV contract. They know that they won’t get JACK DIDLY POO out of the new TV deal so they have to recoup money somehow. PATHETIC!!!

  5. phreakin says: Dec 5, 2012 1:15 PM

    Why have contracts any more? They obviously mean nothing. Coaches quit or get fired, schools leave conferences, its a joke. Get rid of conferences all together and have a computer do the scheduling every year

  6. mungman69 says: Dec 5, 2012 1:40 PM

    Pay the players

  7. guinsrule says: Dec 5, 2012 1:53 PM

    New conference tv deals, new money soon to be coming in from a playoff system, exit fees, skyrocketing coach’s (and assistant coach’s) salaries…everybody’s making more and more money except the most important people in college football…the players.

  8. phelbin says: Dec 5, 2012 2:05 PM

    v2the4 says:

    money power and greed has ruined college sports…this is stupid…they as may well go ahead and pay the players, considering how much the coaches are getting paid and what little trickles down to the guys doing the work, the so called student athlethes..

    - – - – - – - – -

    I doubt the mens wrestling teams and womens golf teams would agree with this. Their scholarships depend on football and basketball making money (mostly football). So, yes, the money does trickle down.

    Under Title IX, a school couldn’t pay only football players without paying every other student athlete too. And no school in the country could do that without cutting 80% of their athletics departments.

  9. rubbernilly says: Dec 5, 2012 2:31 PM

    I typically don’t favor these sorts of things being wrangled in court, but I have to admit that Rutgers has a point with regard to the other schools who have already left… not that their early exit agreements constitutes a breach of the agreement between Rutgers and the Big East (maybe it does, and maybe it doesn’t; I’d have to see more information), but on the money the Big East should have collected from those teams.

    If that money was really supposed to have been distributed to the remaining schools and the Big East negotiated away its ability to collect, then Rutgers (and any other Big East school) has a legitimate argument for terminating the partnership without penalty.

  10. rcali says: Dec 5, 2012 3:59 PM

    Does anybody honor contracts they sign these days?

  11. scalpemseminoles says: Dec 5, 2012 4:44 PM

    rcali says:
    Dec 5, 2012 3:59 PM
    Does anybody honor contracts they sign these days?
    ————————-
    There are clauses in the contracts that allow you to leave the contract if you would like, so yes.

  12. frug says: Dec 5, 2012 5:19 PM

    @v2the4

    Pitt and Sryacuse both are paying $10M if Im not mistaken…thats what Rutgers should pay if they wait until 2014 to leave

    Pitt and ‘Cuse are paying $7.5 million, since the exit fee when they announced their intent to depart was only $5 million. The extra $2.5 million is a buyout to get around the 27 month waiting period.

    I suspect Rutgers will ultimately pay the full $10 million in exchange for the league waiving the 27 month waiting period.

  13. dmcgrann says: Dec 5, 2012 6:17 PM

    “Maryland, the other Big Ten acquisition, is also suing the ACC to try to get out of paying the conference’s $50 million exit fee.”
    _________________________________

    The ACC is suing Maryland. I have not seen where Maryland has sued the ACC, nor where Maryland has filed an answer or counterclaim to the ACC’s suit as of now.

  14. thegamecocker says: Dec 5, 2012 8:59 PM

    Rutgers has much better lawyers who know their way around contracts. I agree with the poster who said RU will ultimately pay the $10 million but leave the conference sooner than the 27 months. Sounds reasonable to me. RU might lose big football games like last week, but when in comes to court proceedings, go with Rutgers and give the point. :)

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