Mountain West clears up status of San Diego St.’s membership

San Diego State ham-handedly tried to depart the Mountain West for a spot in the Pac-12 or Big 12, but quickly retracted its exit letter.

The Mountain West Conference has informed San Diego State that it is still a member in good standing despite rumors of its departure amid speculation of a possible move to the Pac-12 or Big 12, per media reports.

The backstory: San Diego State University had initially informed the Mountain West Conference in June that it intended to leave the conference, but later rescinded that decision and expressed its desire to stay.


  • According to ESPN, the conference never considered kicking SDSU out, but the legal fees related to the potential move will need to be covered by the university.
  • The conference had been withholding $6.6 million in TV and radio rights payments to SDSU as part of the negotiations, but will now release the funds following the university’s decision to stay in the conference.
  • The Mountain West Conference has played an important role in SDSU athletics, with the university’s football program earning conference championships and notable bowl game victories, including in the Mountain West Championship Game and the Poinsettia Bowl.
  • However, with the Mountain West Conference reinstating SDSU, it appears the university will remain within the conference for at least the next two years, with the buyout fee to leave the conference is set to balloon to nearly $34 million, according to the report.

What they’re saying: “San Diego State is a positive to the Mountain West,” Nevarez said at Mountain West media days. “We are better with San Diego State in the league, and I feel really good about where we landed.”

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