Paul Zeise over at the Post-Gazette has spoken with a lot of folks in the Pittsburgh Panthers athletic department and come to a conclusion. If the West Virginia Mountaineers stay the course and leave the Big East in 2012, they (and presumably the Syracuse Orange with them) are leaving ASAP.
I am now becoming more and more convinced in the conversations I've had in the past two days that Pitt will be in the ACC in 2012 and here is why - the school has had enough with the way the Big East has mangled this all and frankly is waiting on West Virginia.
If - or more accurately - when, West Virginia finally declares they are leaving for the 2012 season officially and the Big 12 schedule is announced with WVU on it, Pitt is going to follow them out the door and dare the Big East to stop them.
I mean, I still think we're in the Big East for at least the 2012-2013 season, but, who the hell knows with the way these things go. Both Pitt and Syracuse are now in the strange position of rooting for West Virginia.
Pitt AD Steve Pederson spoke with Sportsradio 93-7 The Fan where he talked about how he has not closed the door on joining the ACC in 2012 and that he's keeping a close eye on the West Virginia situation. He also points out the fact that the Big East allowed TCU to leave without conferring with Pitt & SU, forcing the schools to fill that space on their 2012 football schedule in a pinch, costing them money.
Zeise brings up an interesting thought even if we do stay but West Virginia goes. SU and Pitt (and every other Big East football school) could sue the Big East over lost revenue. The West Virginia game is likely to be a nationally-televised game for both schools and the replacement would almost certainly have to be a lower-tier FBS or FCS school.
Whenever you think this whole situation gets ugly, we always uncover a way to make it uglier.