Hampton University is calling for mediation attempts to settle the dispute over the school exiting the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC). A letter in late February to the conference from Hampton called for both sides to settle on a mediator to lead the process and to split the cost of the mediation in half between the two parties.
According to the school’s senior vice president Paul C. Harris, “A mediator could help identify the best interests of both parties and focus on reaching an agreement that meets their needs. An experienced mediator understands that sometimes the best outcomes have little to do with bylaws, legal rights, financial interests, or the probable results of a trial…and listen and try to discern the important, underlying issues with an appreciation for the unique perspectives of each party…”
Hampton has been a part of the MEAC for more than 20 years. The current dispute arose in November when the school announced it would be leaving its current conference and join the Big South. The fall announcement missed the July 1 deadline for notifying its current conference of a change and acknowledged as much.
Several months later in February, Hampton issued a press release accusing the conference of “unreasonable demands,” including $250,000 in fees and the requirement the school play four more seasons as a non-conference member. The school intends to play its upcoming 2019 season in the Big South.
The conference has accused the school of not adhering to the constitution and bylaws of the constitution and because of this the school would “have to face consequences. ”