Blog Entry

Candidates for Fiesta Bowl job

Posted on: April 28, 2011 8:24 pm
Edited on: April 28, 2011 8:25 pm
NEW ORLEANS -- Three names have emerged in the search for the next Fiesta Bowl executive director.

Big East senior associate commissioner Nick Carparelli, Pac-12 associate commissioner Kevin Weiberg and WAC commissioner Karl Benson all have either been mentioned in college circles or are interested. Fiesta officials here for the BCS meetings would not discuss any specific names of candidates. 

Weiberg, 54, is Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott's right hand and currently is involved in setting up the conference's new network. Benson, 59, has been in charge of the WAC for the last 17 years. Carparelli is in a unique position. He has been here this week at the BCS meetings as chair of the NCAA bowl licensing subcommittee which will determine whether the Fiesta will be licensed going forward after a scandal rocked the 40-year old bowl.

It is not known whether any of three is on the Fiesta's short list. But it is known that at least Benson is interested in pursuing the job.

The Fiesta is restructuring after the firing of veteran executive director John Junker. It officials were here the past two days trying convince the NCAA and the BCS that it should remain a major bowl. Fiesta officials met with that bowl licensing subcommittee on Thursday. Earlier in the day, NCAA president Mark Emmert called for a task force to oversee bowl licensing, the feeling being that it has become too easy to be licensed. The assumption is that the Fiesta scandal was the tipping point.

The first step in that "healing" for the Fiesta is picking a credible executive director. Weiberg was hired 14 months ago as the then-Pac 10 deputy commissioner. Previously he held the same position at the Big Ten from 1989 to 1998. From 1998-2007, he was Big 12 commissioner. Weiberg was on the verge of convincing the Big 12 to start its own network before being rebuffed by Texas. Shortly thereafter he left the league. His expertise is in television and expansion. Weiberg is given credit for integrating Penn State into the Big Ten. He and Scott were part of the near-raid on the Big 12 that would have led to half the league coming to the Pac-10.

Benson deserves credit for doggedly keeping one of the lower-tier conferences together over the years. In May 1998, he was flat on his back on the couch after eye surgery as the 16-team WAC began to crumble underneath him. Half the teams bolted to start the Mountain West in 1999. In the last year the WAC has lost Boise State, Hawaii, Fresno State and Nevada.  All four will leave the league within the next two seasons. Benson and the WAC have kept the league alive adding Texas State and Texas-San Antonio in future years. 

Carparelli is listed as overseeing football and corporate sponsorships in his specific duties for the Big East.

The Fiesta will learn within the next month whether a BCS task force will decide whether to keep the bowl in the BCS. The NCAA bowl licensing subcommittee is waiting on the task force's decision before proceeding.

Fiesta board chairman Duane Woods said the group of CEO candidates are "diverse." 

"It's somebody that the football committee would trust," said Nick Carparelli chair of the licensing subcommittee. "The committee feels like that the issues were systemic issues. There was an executive director in place [John Junker] that everybody did trust. Clearly, too much authority was given to that one individual."

Junker faces possible criminal charges for improper political contributions.

"It's always difficult to go back over the story again," Woods said after meeting with the NCAA. "It's painful. I think rebuilding trust takes up a lot of these conversations. No matter how tight the controls are, you are always disappointed when you find something like this. Yeah, we found some bad things."
Category: NCAAF

Since: Sep 20, 2006
Posted on: April 29, 2011 3:30 pm

Candidates for Fiesta Bowl job

(tongue in cheek) I say strip the Fiesta of BCS status!!! Make the Humanitarian Bowl a BCS bowl!!!!  LOL

Since: Sep 17, 2007
Posted on: April 29, 2011 2:41 pm

Candidates for Fiesta Bowl job

The only thing that conerns me is why he only wants 6K for his sister in laws wedding,  that number is way to low, it should be like the royal wedding, except with golf. 

Set, it's his sister-in-law's wedding, which sounds like it is his brother getting married to someone. So, the 6K is not really for the wedding, but for the bachelor party. Obviously, dk13 is too discreet (unlike the fired Fiesta Bowl people) to announce, "I need $6K for a kegger." That discretion already shows he is the man for the job.

My only complaint with dk13 was his cheap shot about "horrid blazers". That comment has seriously depressed my eBay auctions of horrid unusual men's wear. I was about to offer him a chartreuse and fuschia jacket in a 46 short . . .

Since: Aug 17, 2006
Posted on: April 29, 2011 11:37 am

Candidates for Fiesta Bowl job

I was about to apply for the Fiesta Bowl job but  qualifications are better than mine.   I am not a scratch golfer and can only make drinks with Tequila and Rum.   I also could only spend about 5 months a year in the valley of the sun each year.    The only thing that conerns me is why he only wants 6K for his sister in laws wedding,  that number is way to low, it should be like the royal wedding, except with golf. 

Since: Jul 29, 2009
Posted on: April 28, 2011 11:45 pm

Candidates for Fiesta Bowl job

I would like to announce that I am officially throwing my hat in the ring to be the Fiesta Bowl executive director. My strong background as a professional bartender and scratch golfer should make me stand out above the rest of these stiffs. I have boatloads of experience in shaking hands with dudes in equally horrid blazers that could care less about me except for the possibility of an invitation for their institution to be invited to Phoenix in January. In addition, I only need $500 for strip club responsibilities; 15K for golf weekends, and 6K for my sister-in-law's wedding reception. That alone will save the good folks of the Fiesta Bowl at least 15Grand compared to Junkhead. I look forward to hearing a response to my offer as I strongly feel that I'm as good,if not better than the other candidates. I vow to spend my entire time in the Scottsdale area for 7 months out of the year. as the summer temps are a bit too much for my taste.

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