Big East asks for preliminary injunction to keep WVU in conference

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The Big East has asked a Rhode Island judge for a preliminary injunction ordering West Virginia to stay in the conference according to the 27-month waiting period as dictated in the conference’s bylaws.

You can read the 29-page injunction HERE, but it essentially reiterates the conference’s litigation against WVU: that the institution’s move to the Big 12 by next year causes irreparable damage to the Big East. The newly expanded Big East that includes Boise State, San Diego State, et al, won’t take effect until 2013.

The injunction, filed Dec. 14, says “given the unambiguous withdrawal provisions in the Bylaws — which WVU (a) helped draft and (b) reaffirmed as recently as October 17, 2011 — the BIG EAST has a strong likelihood of success on its merits. The Bylaws require WVU to participate in BIG EAST athletics through the 2013-14 seasons; WVU has breached the Bylaws by announcing its intent to play in the Big 12 Conference for the 2012-13 seasons.”

Indeed, Big East members voted unanimously to raise the exit fees and reaffirm exit bylaws. And, just like every other Big East member, WVU was playing both hands in doing so. With Pitt and Syracuse already announcing they would leave for the ACC in September, and with TCU leaving for the Big 12, I’m not sure there was a single Big East football member who wasn’t on the phone with another conference trying to sell their program.

At the same time, they had keep moving forward with the Big East as though everything was peachy. Remember, the increased exit fee was reportedly a prerequisite for schools like Boise State and Navy to join the Big East.

So, the question becomes if WVU voted to reaffirm the Big East exit bylaws on Oct. 17 knowing full well that the conference had already lost three members, and then filed suit against the conference on Oct. 31… how did the conference degenerate more in that two week span?

WVU announced it was a member of the Big 12 on Oct. 28. 

The motion also goes on to state the myriad ways the Big East suffers — TV rights deals with ESPN and CBS, lost money from scheduling conflicts and less exposure through fewer games, recruiting, etc — but that WVU does not suffer no matter which conference they play in from 2012-14.

The purpose of the motion for injunction is to keep things in the status quo. If the conference is able to move along as is for the next year until its expansion can take full effect, then the conference will not be damaged in any way.

In a related story, the Big East’s motion to dismiss the WVU lawsuit in the Circuit Court of Monongalia  County was denied today by a judge. We should know sometime this week the ruling on WVU’s motion to dismiss the Big East’s lawsuit in Providence, Rhode Island.

A trial had been tentatively set for June 25, 2012; WVU has maintained they will be a member of the Big 12 by July 1, 2012.

Iowa State QB Re-al Mitchell latest to enter name into transfer portal

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The portal has claimed another name and Iowa State’s quarterback depth will suffer as a result.

Cyclones signal-caller Re-al Mitchell became the latest enter the NCAA Transfer Database this week and confirmed on social media that he was leaving Ames for another opportunity elsewhere.

The move is fairly unsurprising given that Mitchell arrived on campus in the same recruiting class as current starter Brock Purdy. With a pathway to significant playing time blocked by one of the best young QB’s in the sport, a ticket out of town seemed like it was coming sooner or later for the team’s No. 2 on the depth chart.

A dual-threat known for his speed, Mitchell was originally ranked as a three-star prospect coming out of high school who picked ISU over Arizona, Illinois, Kansas State, South Carolina and others. He wound up playing in six games under Matt Campbell over two seasons and threw for an even 100 yards and one touchdown.

A Southern California native, it’s possible a move back West could be in the cards for Mitchell. He appears to be insistent on playing under center but did see spot duty as a wide receiver during his stint in Ames.

Following the departure of Mitchell, Campbell will quite a bit of youth behind Purdy on the team’s depth chart. Freshman Aidan Bouman enrolled early for spring practice while fellow Class of 2020 QB and four-star recruit Hunter Dekkers will arrive later as they battle it out for backup reps. Iowa State opens the season at home against FCS South Dakota before heading to Kinnick Stadium to take on rival Iowa in Week 2.

Texas LB Ayodele Adeoye to miss spring practice with foot injury

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New Texas coordinator Chris Ash’s task at turning around the team’s defense got a tad bit harder on Saturday.

According to a release from the school, linebacker Ayodele Adeoye suffered a foot injury and will undergo surgery to correct it. While he is expected to be back in time for summer workouts, the upcoming trip under the knife will knock him out for all of spring practice in Austin.

Adeoye was a top recruit out of high school in 2018 but played in just four games and redshirted his first year on the Forty Acres. He turned into a regular starter (nine games) last season however and was fifth on the team in tackles (45) while recording an interception and 2.5 sacks.

With the redshirt sophomore out, the Longhorns depth this spring as they re-tool under Ash will certainly be tested. Fellow rising sophomore David Gbenda likely will take on an increased role based on the depth chart — though he might have to earn his way back after being sent home from UT’s Alamo Bowl win over Utah due to a violation of team rules.

Texas opens the 2020 season at home against USF and new head coach Jeff Scott before heading to Baton Rouge for a must-see game against reigning national champion LSU in Week 2.

Miami DL Scott Patchan enters transfer portal

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The transfer portal has giveth for Miami football and it’s taken away.

Less than a week after Hurricanes got a big pickup in the form of Temple grad transfer DL Quincy Roche, the program learned that veteran defensive end Scott Patchan had entered his name into the transfer portal via an announcement on social media:

Patchan started six games last season and played in all 13 for Miami in 2019. He recorded 33 tackles and 2.5 sacks while in the lineup but ultimately took a back seat to star pass rusher Greg Rousseau and a host of others.

The loss of Patchan certainly hurts the depth head coach Manny Diaz has to play with but is by no means a killer given what will return in 2020 along the line. In addition to Rousseau (coming off a 15.5 sack campaign) and former AAC Defensive Player of the Year Roche, rising sophomore Jahfari Harvey saw action and former five-star Jaelan Phillips will be eligible after transferring from UCLA.

Patchan, who received a waiver from the NCAA for a sixth-year after injuries hampered his career, will be immediately eligible for his new school.

Miami opens the 2020 season with a game against Temple as part of a three-game homestand against Group of Five opponents before traveling to Michigan State for a big non-conference test.

Buyouts and Chip Kelly’s grocery bill lands UCLA with $18.9 million deficit in 2019

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A difficult year for UCLA on the football field was just as difficult on the balance sheet.

According to details obtained by the San Jose Mercury News, the Bruins reported a shocking $18.9 million deficit for the recent 2018-19 fiscal year. This was the result of $108.4 million in revenue and $127.3 million in outgoing expenses.

“A confluence of events over the past two years led us to this point,” AD Dan Guerrero said in a statement to the paper, “and while it is unusual for us, we expect this shortfall can be mitigated.

“The investments made into our football and men’s basketball programs will pay off, ticket sales will normalize and one-time expenses will be paid.”

Those investments included a nearly 30 percent increase in the football program’s funding since the hire of Chip Kelly in late 2017. While former head coach Jim Mora’s buyout (nearly $12.5 million) was recorded in the previous year’s budget, the effects of it naturally carried over and created an even tricker situation when basketball coach Steve Alford’s buyout was thrown in for 2019.

In addition to buyouts, the grocery bill seemed to play a pretty big factor in the deficit as well. While this doesn’t appear to just be the case of switching from Albertsons to Whole Foods, under Kelly the program’s budget for nutrition ballooned from just a shade under $1 million to nearly $5.4 million last year. Add in decreased ticket sales in football (down $3.5 million from projections) after a disappointing year and increased costs from other places in the department and you can see how UCLA quickly went from being in the black into the red.

Needless to say, that puts even more pressure on Kelly and company to help turn things around in 2020. Things in Westwood haven’t been rosy in some time in the major revenue-producing sports and it seems it’s finally caught up to the folks in powder blue.