Dear OSU Community Members:
Today, together with Washington State University, we are taking a critical step to continue our ability to explore ways to preserve the legacy and future viability of the Pac-12 Conference. Ten members of the Pac-12 have given notice that they are withdrawing from the Conference. As the two remaining members, Oregon State and Washington State are left to find ways to carry on the Pac-12’s 108-year legacy.
We intend to steward the Pac-12’s assets and resources in the best interests of student-athletes, fans, our universities and the Conference itself. The future of the Pac-12 must be determined by its remaining members, not those who are departing for competing conferences.
This morning, Oregon State and Washington State initiated legal action to confirm the governance structure of the conference, gain access to business information, and protect the conference’s assets. The temporary restraining order we have requested seeks to prevent the Pac-12 Commissioner and Pac-12 Conference from permitting the departing institutions to take control. We must not be stopped or limited in our ability to continue explorations of continuing the Pac-12’s legacy. We intend to make reasonable business decisions in the interest of the conference going forward while continuing to seek collaboration and consultation with the departing universities on any ultimate financial decisions.
We did not create or seek these circumstances. As you know, we have been strong advocates for keeping the conference together and preserving the regional rivalries that have meant so much to so many people. Stabilizing the Pac-12 is the first step on our path as we secure a future for OSU Athletics that serves the holistic health and well-being of student-athletes and their ability to compete at the highest level possible. The road ahead will not be fast or easy. But we gain strength and determination with each step as we link arms with you and fight onward.
Thank you to all those who have contributed to the outpouring of support for the university and OSU student-athletes, coaches and staff in recent weeks. We will continue to provide you updates, which you can also find at https://beav.es/TBs.
Jayathi Y. Murthy