Under an agreement reached between Fresno State, Nevada and the Western Athletic Conference, Fresno State will remain in the Western Athletic Conference until June 30, 2012, and then leave to join the Mountain West Conference. Fresno State will pay the WAC $180,000 a year in each of the next five years as part of the agreement with the WAC to settle all disputes over the school’s departure.
President John D. Welty said, “We have always been proud to be a member of the Western Athletic Conference and compete against its very fine teams. We’ve fought hard in the WAC, won championships and enjoyed the competition. Now we look forward to a new chapter in our competition as a member of the Mountain West Conference.”
Director of Athletics Thomas Boeh said “We’re pleased to have the process completed and with what we consider a highly desirable financial outcome.”
Fresno State and Nevada announced Aug. 18 that they were leaving the WAC, and hoped to do so after the 2011 season. After the WAC filed a lawsuit against the two schools aimed to keep them from leaving until the 2012-13 year and claiming each owed $5 million to leave the conference, negotiations were undertaken.
Boeh said that Fresno State preferred to make the move after this school year. “But in negotiations, everybody has to give something. We feel strongly that we did well.”
The Mountain West Conference has agreed to waive any entrance fee for Fresno State to join. Boeh said he expects an increase in conference revenue for Fresno State after it joins the MWC.
To view the WAC corporate resolution and settlement agreement, go to www.WACsports.com.