Following the settlement agreement executed by West Virginia University (“West Virginia”) and The Big East Conference (“Big East”), the University of Pittsburgh (“Pitt”) has filed suit against the Big East seeking to be released prior to the twenty-seven month waiting period specified in the Big East Bylaws. Pitt argues that the Big East knowingly and intentionally waived any right to enforce the twenty-seven month withdrawal period by failing to require TCU to abide by the withdrawal period. Similarly, Pitt argues that the Big East also waived its right to enforce the withdrawal period by allowing West Virginia to buyout the remainder of the withdrawal period. Further, Pitt argues that the Big East has never required any school to provide twenty-seven months’ notice of withdrawal from the conference.
As a result of the foregoing, Pitt seeks a declaratory judgment and a finding from the court that 1) the Big East knowingly and intentionally relinquished and waived any requirement for an institution to provide twenty-seven months’ notice of withdrawal; 2) Pitt may withdraw from the Big East at the end of the 2012-13 conference year without penalty; 3) the Big East cannot enjoin Pitt from withdrawing from the Big East at the end of the 2012-13 conference year; and 4) Pitt is entitled to receive revenue received by the Big East during the 2011-12 conference year including revenue received from TCU and West Virginia.
Pitt also sets forth a cause of action for promissory estoppel indicating that the Big East promised that Pitt would have a home game against TCU in 2012. To the Big East’s detriment, Pitt had to buyout the contract of an existing opponent in the amount of $250,000.00 to clear room in its schedule for a game with TCU. Pitt also had to pay $320,000.00 in game fees to obtain a replacement opponent for the game scheduled with TCU.