The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

Sports

October 28, 2011

OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE - WVU to join Big 12 Conference

Mountaineers membership effective July 2012

IRVING, Texas — FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

October 28, 2011

IRVING, Texas - The Big 12 Conference Board of Directors have voted unanimously to accept West Virginia University as a full conference member effective July 1, 2012.  The Mountaineers will begin competing in the Big 12 beginning with the 2012-13 athletic season.

West Virginia is the second new member to join the Conference since it began in 1996 after the addition of TCU earlier this month.

"The Big 12 Presidents and Chancellors are excited to welcome another outstanding institution to the Conference," said Burns Hargis, Chair of the Big 12 Board of Directors and President of Oklahoma State University. "The addition of West Virginia, while expanding the reach of the Big 12, brings an impressive institution with esteemed academics and a proud athletic tradition into the Conference. This is another step in building a strong foundation for the future of the Big 12."

"The Big 12 is a perfect fit for West Virginia University," said WVU President Dr. James P. Clements. "It is a strong conference that, like WVU, values quality academic and athletic programs, and has a great tradition of success. This is a very exciting time for WVU and Mountaineer nation.  I am confident that the future of WVU athletics has never been more promising."

West Virginia University, located in Morgantown, sponsors 17 varsity sports. Men’s sports include baseball, basketball, football, soccer, swimming & diving and wrestling. Women’s sports are basketball, cross country, gymnastics, rowing, soccer, swimming & diving, tennis, indoor and outdoor track & field and volleyball. The Mountaineers also boast a co-ed rifle squad. The Big 12 sponsors every sport the Mountaineers participate in except rifle and men’s soccer.

"We are excited to add West Virginia to our exceptional lineup of Conference members," said Big 12 Interim Commissioner Chuck Neinas. "They bring an excellent overall athletic program to the Big 12 and allow the league to expand into an area that boasts a passionate group of fans and alumni throughout its region."

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