BYU, owned by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, was left out of the various realignments and athletic director Tom Holmoe said last month that going independent was an option the Cougars would consider. BYU already has its own television network — BYU-TV — which would get the Cougars out of having to share the Mountain West's TV network with the league's other eight members.
"We have a national base. We can go all over the country and people can see that," Holmoe told reporters last month. "That is a very important thing to us right now — exposure."
The Salt Lake Tribune published Holmoe's comments on Wednesday after the rumors that the Cougars were going back to the WAC surfaced, then erupted when somebody apparently hacked Colorado State's athletics Twitter account and said an announcement was imminent.
The Tribune, citing an unidentified WAC source, said BYU's move was awaiting approval of church leaders. A church spokeswoman referred calls back to BYU, which released a brief statement late in the day after media relations workers were bombarded with calls and e-mail.
The statement did nothing to tone down speculation on whether conference realignment was really back again two months after it appeared settled for at least a little while.
"BYU has been reviewing, and will continue to explore, every option to advance its athletic program," the statement read. "At this point, BYU has no further comment."
Associated Press writers Josh Dubow in San Francisco and Scott Sonner in Reno contributed to this report.
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