Report: Oregon State and Washington State partner with West Coast Conference
Dec 20, 2023, 1:39 PM
Oregon State and Washington State are nearing an agreement with the West Coast Conference for basketball and other Olympic sports amid the collapse of the Pac-12 Conference, Ross Dellenger of Yahoo!, Matt Norlander of CBS Sports and Nicole Auerbach of The Athletic reported.
The deal would be centered around basketball and other Olympic sports and potentially allow the two programs to compete for the automatic NCAA tournament bids for the school’s basketball programs, although the details have not been formalized.
The football programs of Oregon State and Washington State have a scheduling partnership in place with the Mountain West for next season while the two schools have been granted the ability to rebuild the Pac-12 through the 2025-26 seasons.
NCAA bylaws require all conferences to have a minimum of six participating members to qualify for automatic qualifying spots to NCAA championships. The FBS requires a minimum of eight member schools for conference designation.
In the reported agreement with the WCC, baseball was not included in the deal.
There is expected to be financial incentives for the WCC and its nine member schools which are all located in California, Oregon or Washington.
Gonzaga has won the West Coast Conference tournament and represented the conference in the men’s NCAA Tournament for four straight seasons.
Last season, Gonzaga and Saint Mary’s were both invited to the NCAA Tournament. Gonzaga lost in the Elite 8 to eventual champion UConn. Saint Mary’s also lost to UConn in the round of 32.