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Tag:Fiesta Bowl
Posted on: May 11, 2011 4:56 pm
 

Surprise! (Not) Fiesta stays in BCS

It's what we all thought it would be.

Fiesta Bowl gets its Tostitos slapped, gets fined $1 million. In Wednesday's statement the BCS was "deeply troubled" by the financial shenanigans for a bowl that had "scant record for ethics." A BCS task force huffed and puffed and took 15 pages of legalese to explain why it was so upset ...

... and then conditionally allowed the Fiesta to keep its place in the BCS

Reasonable folks can debate whether the Justice Department will be able to touch the BCS. But it's obvious they're not going to harm themselves. Remember, many of the eight-person group that evaluated the Fiesta has been gorged with the bowl's food and drowned with its drink in the past. The Fiesta has this annual three-day retreat that used to be called the "Fiesta Frolic." Yes, legitimate business is done there but there's a lot of free stuff too. One critic called last week and laughed, telling me a member of the bowl licensing subcommittee that is going to decide the Fiesta's NCAA fate "hasn't paid for a round of golf in his life."


I get that every AD in the country gets invited to the Frolic, now renamed the "Valley of the Sun Experience and Fiesta Seminars". I get that it's a great way to network. I also question, still, why eight truly independent persons couldn't be found by the BCS to decide the Fiesta's fate. The Fiesta itself did it, forming the special committee that uncovered all the graft and political contributions that the task force re-investigated.

Per that task force, the Fiesta is now subject to annual audit. Fair enough, but why not all the BCS bowls? If you think the over-the-top spending stopped in Phoenix, you're nuts. It would add a layer of credibility and wouldn't cost much. Isn't that how the Fiesta got in trouble in the first place? It didn't have proper oversight.

"We have no reason to suspect there is any kind of issue for the other bowls," said Bill Hancock, the BCS executive director.

Oh, really? Party on, Orange, Rose and Sugar.

By trying to localize the problem, the BCS is inviting more scrutiny. One of the "reforms" being put on the Fiesta is that two members of its board must be from the "collegiate community." Bet me a bag of those chips that both persons will be veterans of the FrolicExperienceSeminars.
Category: NCAAF
Tags: BCS, Fiesta Bowl
 
Posted on: April 28, 2011 8:24 pm
Edited on: April 28, 2011 8:25 pm
 

Candidates for Fiesta Bowl job

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
Posted on: April 28, 2011 10:52 am
Edited on: April 28, 2011 2:36 pm
 

NCAA: No new bowls for next three years

The NCAA announced Thursday a moratorium of up to three years on the addition of any new bowls. That is more of a mathematical reality than reform because there are currently 35 bowls taking up 70 slots. NCAA research has shown there have been an average of 72 bowl-eligible teams since the 12-team regular-season was instituted in 2005.

NCAA president Mark Emmert also announced a Bowl Licensing Task Force to "examine the purpose, criteria, process and oversight of the NCAA licensing procedures for football bowl games. " Emmert didn't say specifically but the creation of the task force seems to be a reaction to the recent Fiesta Bowl scandal. The approximate 10-member task force, chaired by Nebraska chancellor Harvey Perlman, will report back to Emmert by October. It will be asked to look at "the way we currently license bowls," Emmert said.

The moratorium will be a maximum of three years or up until the time the task force completes its duties. 

As of now, that licensing is more or less a rubber stamp. The NCAA bowl licensing subcommittee certifies bowls on a four-year basis but can review them year-to-year. The only bowls ever rejected by the NCAA are the old Silicon Valley Bowl and Seattle Bowl. Both of those had financial problems. The Fiesta is currently being scrutinized by a BCS task force as well as the licensing subcommittee. After a failed whitewash investigation, the bowl commissioned a special committee that found lavish spending by the bowl and possible criminal activity involving improper political contributions.

  "Those are the kinds of things that none of us find acceptable and we all find completely contrary to the values of intercollegiate athletics," Emmert said. "We simply can't abide by those kinds of behaviors."

  Emmert also said the NCAA is "... making sure that each of the bowl organizations have appropriate oversight and governance ... That they have established conflict of interest rules and policies."

PlayoffPac, a Washington, D.C. political action committee, reported that nine members of the licensing subcommittee accepted what it termed "a three-day golf trip" from the Fiesta Bowl in the past. The annual retreat formerly known as the "Fiesta Frolic" has changed its name to "Valley of the Sun Experience and Fiesta Seminars." Regular attendees of the event argue that legitimate business is conducted during the three days. PlayoffPac published a 2008 itinerary from the Frolic where the word "golf" is mentioned 15 times. Emmert did not speak specifically about a possible conflict of interest by subcommittee members.

  Emmert said he brought up the subject of increased bowl scrutiny to the executive board in January.

  "It became clear to me that a review of those criteria and those processes were overdue," he said.


Category: NCAAF
Tags: Fiesta Bowl, NCAA
 
Posted on: April 27, 2011 7:51 pm
Edited on: May 1, 2011 12:54 pm
 

More oversight expected on bowl system

NEW ORLEANS -- For those of you who have long wondered what the NCAA can do to rein in bowl excess, we may be about to find out.

NCAA president Mark Emmert is expected to put what is termed a "moratorium" on the addition of bowls in the future during a Thursday morning conference call. The NCAA announced the call with media Wednesday to discuss "bowl football licensing issues." The NCAA has precious little oversight regarding college football, even less in the postseason where its licensing of bowls has turned into a rubber stamp, partially because of legal reasons.

Emmert is expected to announce tougher licensing standards to address the overabundance of bowls now at 35. The 70 slots meant that some bowls came close to requesting a waiver to invite below .500 teams last season. The timing of the call comes during the BCS meetings here during which Fiesta Bowl officials are here trying to make their case to the NCAA bowl licensing subcommittee and a BCS task force. The task force is determining whether the Fiesta should be part of the BCS going forward. The Fiesta is restructuring after an independent report in March detailed lavish spending and possible criminal activity by former executive director John Junker. 

The NCAA subcommittee certifies bowls on a four-year basis, although bowls can be evaluated year-to-year. Only two bowl, the old Silicon Valley Bowl and Seattle Bowl, have not been licensed in the history of the subcommittee and that was because of financial concerns. That's essentially all the power the NCAA has over the bowl system, aside from assigning from making officiating assignments. However, the subcommittee and task force are considering whether the Fiesta should be licensed/part of the BCS going forward.

BCS executive director Bill Hancock didn't know the exact nature of Emmert's call but said, "Personally, I think more oversight in general would be good for college football. I think anyone who viewed the Fiesta Bowl report would come away thinking the same thing."

Hancock added that, legally, the Fiesta could be kicked out of the BCS before next year's game. The task force is expected to issue a decision by mid-May. Fiesta officials met with members of the task force for what was termed an information-gathering session Saturday in Chicago.

"The answer is, yes, we believe there is [a way to kick out Fiesta]," Hancock said. "But we're miles away from there."

"There's a whole spectrum [of penalties] -- all the way from no action [to] all the way to the right side, finding another bowl game."

The 40-year old Fiesta Bowl is aligned with the Big 12. It selects the conference champion if that school is not selected to the BCS title game. The other spot in the bowl is at-large.  

The fact that Emmert is speaking during the BCS meetings is significant. Perception-wise these are not good times for the NCAA and the BCS. The Fiesta scandal has been attached to others at Auburn, Ohio State and Tennessee.

"We certainly are under a lot of heat," Big 12 commissioner Dan Beebe said. "We've got to carefully analyze where we're going. If you step out too far and make judgments at this time you usually regret them after. It would be very irresponsible to label where we are and what the future holds."

Other news nuggets from the BCS meetings: 

--BCS commissioners are getting more concerned about the later date of the championship game. The 2010 game at the Rose Bowl was played Jan. 9. January's game in Glendale, Ariz. was the latest ever, Jan. 10. At this late date there is no firm date for the 2012 game here at the Super Dome because of the NFL labor situation. The traditional Sugar Bowl will be played Jan. 2 or Jan. 3 with the title game tentatively scheduled for Jan. 9. That could change, though, if the NFL schedule is pushed back even one week. 

--The geeks will oversee the geeks. After a scoring input snafu in December, the BCS endured one of the biggest embarrassments in its history. LSU and Boise State were ranked in the wrong order in the final standings. The mistake was caught by CBSSports.com contributor Jerry Palm but did not affect the bowl placements. Hancock said the six BCS computer operators have established "peer review" that will make sure the right scores are placed into the computers. "They need to not let us down again," Hancock said sternly.

--The recent anti-trust challenge from Utah attorney general Mark Shurtleff was met with a typically short rebuke. Shurtleff recently said he intends to sue the BCS for anti-trust violations. "We are absolutely confident that the BCS complies with the laws of the country," Hancock said. 
Category: NCAAF
Posted on: April 25, 2011 6:41 pm
Edited on: April 25, 2011 9:05 pm
 

Fiesta Frolic agenda, judge for yourself

The following is a "Fiesta Frolic" agenda obtained by PlayoffPAC, which says it is the source of a Monday AP story detailing benefits received by current NCAA licensing subcommittee members at the annual gathering.  

PlayoffPAC doesn't designate what the year is for its agenda. Be advised that PlayoffPAC is dedicated to bringing about a college football playoff. Legitimate business is conducted at the annual retreat sponsored by the Fiesta Bowl, but PlayoffPAC contends it is a "boondoggle."


Wednesday, May 7th


o 8:00 AM to 6:00 PM--Golf Bag Check: "Bowl staff members will collect and tag your golf bag. Golf bags will be delivered directly to the course(s) on your behalf. Please pack and label your clubs accordingly!"

o 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM--Nike Suite: "Stop by the Nike Suite to pick-up your Fiesta Frolic gift package for you and your spouse/guest. Be sure to indicate sizes in your RSVP forms!"

o 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM--Hospitality Suite sponsored by HOK Sport

o 6:30 PM--Welcome Reception and Buffet Dinner sponsored by XOS Technologies

o 8:30 PM to 11:00 PM--Hospitality Suite sponsored by HOK Sport


• Thursday, May 8th

o 5:30 AM to 6:00 PM--Hospitality Suite sponsored by HOK Sport

o 5:30 AM to 7:30 AM--Golfer's Continental Breakfast

o 6:00 AM--Golf Departures Begin

o 7:00 AM--Final Golf Departures

o 8:00 AM--Shotgun Start, golf sponsored by Hunt Construction & CMX

o 8:00 AM to 10:00 AM--Spouses Continental Breakfast and Social

o 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM--Nike Suite

o 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM--PING Golf Club Professional Fittings

o 6:30 PM--Reception and Buffet Dinner sponsored by Collegiate Licensing Company

o 8:30 PM to 11:00 PM--Hospitality Suite sponsored by HOK Sport


• Friday, May 9th

o 5:30 AM to 6:00 PM--Hospitality Suite sponsored by HOK Sport

o 5:30 AM to 7:30 AM--Golfer's Continental Breakfast

o 6:00 AM--Golf Departures Begin

o 7:00 AM--Final Golf Departures

o 8:00 AM--Shotgun Start, golf sponsored by Hunt Construction & CMX

o 8:00 AM--Tennis Matches and Demonstrations

o 8:00 AM to 10:00 AM--Spouses Continental Breakfast and Social


• Saturday, May 10th

o Fiesta Bowl / Insight Bowl Host Transportation to Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport
Category: NCAAF
Posted on: March 29, 2011 2:50 pm
Edited on: March 29, 2011 5:39 pm
 

Fiesta's Junker fired, BCS status in jeopardy

Longtime Fiesta Bowl CEO John Junker was fired Tuesday afternoon following findings of apparent improper payments to politicians. The move was made by the bowl's independent Special Committee of the Board of Directors.

In a news release, the bowl said it uncovered an "apparent scheme" to reimburse at least $46,500 in improper campaign contributions. It also said there was a "flawed initial investigation" and "apparent conspiracy to conceal" the reimbursement scheme from the board and state officials. In addition, there was unauthorized compensation, inappropriate expenditures and inappropriate gifts.

The wrongdoing is so serious that the BCS released a statement Tuesday asking the Fiesta "to demonstrate why it should remain a BCS bowl game."

A 276-page internal report details some of the bowl's largesse, including $1,200 spent at a Phoenix-area strip club. A series of stories in the Arizona Republic instigated the initial inquiry.  At risk, seemingly, is the bowl's non-profit, tax-exempt status. Before the report, the Fiesta hired Nathan Hochman, a former assistant attorney general for the Justice Department's tax division.

After the discovery of those alleged misdeeds, the board voted unanimously to fire Junker, who had taken the bowl from its infancy to being a major player in the Bowl Championship Series. The not-for-profit Fiesta Bowl is considered one of the biggest sports entities in the Valley of the Sun with its charitable foundations and contributions. Junker is one of the most well-liked individuals in college football.

Among the allegations are that employees were reimbursed with "bonuses" after making political contributions to candidates. On one occasion, Junker and his family "appeared" to spend $13,000 to attend a staffer's wedding in Kansas City, Mo., according to the report. During the alleged strip club visit, part of the $1,200 "in all likelihood," according to the report, was spent on dances by strippers.

Junker was put on paid administrative leave in February by the bowl for alleged improper political campaign contributions. The articles of incorporation for the Arizona Sports Authority state that "... this corporation shall not at any time engage in any business activity or transaction which would it to lose its status as a non-profit corporation or tax exempt status ..."


Non-profit, tax-exempt status allows a business to avoid paying taxes because it is a community trust. Three of the four BCS bowls, including the Fiesta, are alleged to have engaged in "tax irregularities." Political action committee PlayoffPAC filed a complaint with the IRS in September . Only the Rose Bowl is not included in any alleged tax violations. 

A tax expert told CBSSports.com last month that he believed the Fiesta Bowl would be able to survive, minus the tax-exempt status. 

"You might owe taxes for a number of years," said veteran tax attorney Wayne Henry who formerly worked with the IRS chief counsel's office. "If they made a lot of money, there could be a big corporate tax liability. In these types of cases, traditionally and typically, there would be some kind of settlement with the government."

The Fiesta board said the special committee was formed after an employee came forward to provide information about alleged misconduct. Junker reportedly had been making more than $600,000 per year. 








Category: NCAAF
Posted on: October 21, 2010 5:33 pm
Edited on: October 22, 2010 11:10 am
 

Halfway Son of Weekend Watch List

BCS bowl projections halfway through the season:

BCS championship: Oregon* vs. Alabama*
Rose: Boise* vs. Iowa*
Fiesta: Nebraska* vs. West Virginia*
Orange: Florida State* vs. Ohio State
Sugar: Auburn vs. Oklahoma

*-automatic qualifier

Notes: Oregon and Alabama win out to advance to the championship game. Alabama beats both LSU and Auburn assuring that there will be no undefeated teams in the SEC. It then beats the SEC East champion to advance. Despite one loss, it vaults over undefeated Boise, the TCU/Utah winner and perhaps even Oregon.  It doesn't matter for the Ducks who stay in the top two because undefeated Boise, Utah/TCU can't catch it in the BCS standings. Meanwhile, other current undefeateds Auburn, LSU, Michigan State, Oklahoma and Missouri also lose locking in Oregon. Alabama would be playing for the first back-to-back national championship since Nebraska in the 1990s. Oregon would be playing for its first.

--The Fiesta Bowl would gladly welcome Nebraska which it hasn't had since 2000. West Virginia would be making a second trip to the Valley of the Sun in four years.

--The Orange Bowl gets one of its more intriguing matchups as Florida State returns to the big time returning to a BCS bowl for the first time since 2005. Ohio State has to settle for an at-large berth after failing to win a sixth consecutive Big Ten title. The Buckeyes return to the Orange for the first time since 1977.

--The Sugar is filled with two at-large participants. Oklahoma returns to New Orleans for the first time since the 2004 (2003 season) national championship game loss to LSU.


Ranking the remaining MICs

11. Urban Meyer, Florida: Let's not forget that 20 years ago, Florida football didn't matter. Post-Zooker, Meyer made it a bigger national power than it was under Spurrier.

12. Joe Paterno, Penn State: No matter how his career ends, JoePa will leave the program in great shape.

13. Frank Beamer, Virginia Tech: An example of having patience with a good coach. Beamer started out terribly but the administration allowed him stay. Now he's one of the best in the country.

14. Al Golden, Temple: The nation's hottest young coach has got it back to the point where the Big East should consider inviting back the Owls.

15. June Jones, SMU: The first and only coach to lead the Ponies to a bowl game since the death penalty. That's good enough for me.

16. Mike Riley, Oregon State: Beavers win eight or nine each year and are always a factor in the Pac-10 race. Don't forget the Civil War is in Corvallis this year.

17. Larry Blakeney, Troy: In the same category as Snyder and Paterno on a smaller scale. Would Troy even exist without Blakeney?

18. Pat Hill, Fresno: Never won a WAC title but kept the Bulldogs relevant to the point that they're jumping to the Mountain West.

19. Jimbo Fisher, Florida State: It's early but all the signs are good that FSU will soon be back on the national scene.

20. Bronco Mendenhall, BYU: Like Meyer, Bronco is allowed a down year.

21. Bo Pelini, Nebraska: If the NFL doesn't come calling, Nebraska will begin winning championships again under Bo.

22. Bret Bielema, Wisconsin: Saturday's win allowed BB to make this list. Ohio State was his second win over a ranked Big Ten team. Barry Alvarez' hand-picked guy is trending upward.

23. Greg Schiano, Rutgers: The momentum has slowed since 2006 but Rutgers is back among the living under Schiano to the point that the Big Ten is sniffing around.

24. Pat Fitzgerald, Northwestern: Operating with a low budget against Big Ten giants, the Wildcats are more than competitive with Fitz.

Oregon set the school season scoring record Thursday in the season's seventh game. The Ducks have 386 points and are averaging more than 55 points per game ... Strange how two Big Ten programs defined themselves by invoking Vince Lombardi this week. First Minnesota AD Joel Maturi said, "It's not like he would be replacing Vince Lombardi," of the new coach after firing Tim Brewster. Then Rich Rodriguez said this about his struggling defense: "Listen, Vince Lombardi could come too and [it's] not going to fix some of the problems we have on defense." ... Ohio State (at Minnesota) hasn't lost consecutive games since 2004 ... TCU has lost one fumble this season ... Texas A&M has lost 12 consecutive televised games dating back to 2008. The Aggies play at Kansas Saturday on Fox Sports Net ...

In this Week of the Head Shot in the NFL, it's interesting to note that Arkansas' Ryan Mallett was knocked out of Saturday's game with a concussion. He practiced Tuesday and will play Saturday against Mississippi ... The last six Auburn-LSU games have been decided by six points or less ... Mississippi State is ranked for the first time in nine years ... Until BYU kicked a field goal in Saturday's 31-3 loss, TCU had not allowed a point in almost three games -- 175 minutes, 10 seconds. A third straight complete shutout would have marked the first time in college football since Boston College in 1992.

 

Posted on: September 24, 2010 4:24 pm
 

Mailbag 9/24


I'm going to give PlayoffPAC its due.

(cue sound of crickets chirping)

If you missed it, and you probably did, the political action committee out of Washington D.C. this week blew the lid off of the BCS bowl system. PlayoffPAC said those bowls' CEOs make too much money. They play fast and loose with their tax exempt status by offering perks and doing undisclosed lobbying. That's from the lead of the Associated Press' "exclusive" detailing PlayoffPAC's legal complaint against the Fiesta, Sugar and Orange bowls.

It probably didn't make your nightly news or even your in-box. Take the word of the Fiesta Bowl which called the accusations, "dated, tired and discredited." So why bring it up? Because I'm wondering what PlayoffPAC wants. It's one thing being a playoff proponent, it's another pouring over 2,300 pages of documents to "nail" these three bowls. Don't these people have families? I know a lot of people who favor a college football playoff. They don't have an unholy, demon-of-the-night compulsion to bring down the very system that would be the foundation of a playoff.

Look, I'll be the first one to say these bowls exist to keep themselves relevant and, yes, profitable. They think the bowl experience is unique and a playoff would wreck the system. I disagree, further evidence that no I'm a bowl honk. I've enjoyed these bowls' hospitality and stayed in really nice hotels set aside for the media. I've also walked back to my hotel at three in the morning after filing two stories on deadline. It's all part of the job. None of that changes if there is a playoff. Actually, I'm on the fence. A playoff would be fun, but it would have to be a 16-teamer from the start. Everything else has inherent exclusion problems that the PlayoffPAC folks should understand.

From what I've read in this complaint, the bowls in question look like they might have to pay a fine. If the IRS threatens to remove their tax-exempt status, then some deal will be cut. Either that or the Cotton Bowl or Gator Bowl or Chick-fil-A Bowl will take their place. But that won't happen. 

It won't happen because these bowls aren't criminal enterprises. Like it or not, they have friends in very high places whether they lobby or not. The Sugar Bowl is part of the fabric of New Orleans and the SEC. After the Cardinals and the Suns, the Fiesta Bowl might be the most significant sports entity in the Valley of the Sun. As a non-profit they have donated millions to charities.  These are institutions to their region, not Enron.

I don't think this is a big deal because virtually no other media outlet picked up on it. The Fiesta Bowl was accused of much of the same stuff in a series of Arizona Republic stories. Read the first sentence of this latest AP story.

Opponents of how college football crowns its champion accused three of the nation's premier bowls of violating their tax-exempt status by paying excessive salaries and perks, providing "sweetheart loans" and doing undisclosed lobbying.

If I didn't know better, I could have sworn they were describing the NCAA. Excessive salaries for executives? Luxury perks? The NCAA, you should know, is a non-profit too. It distributes the overwhelming majority of the money it takes it to its members. Former president Myles Brand made more than $800,000 per year. Seems a bit steep for a non-profit, don't you think? While they're at it PlayoffPAC might want to look into the tax exempt status of the 120 Division I-A schools too.

Maybe it will. Maybe this is the beginning of the end. One thing, though. I almost glossed over it. The PlayoffPAC came after three bowls with a combined age of 175 years with six lawyers and an accountant. I've seen bigger legal teams in a Grisham novel set in rural Mississippi. In the big, bad world of DC politics, this is the equivalent of a six-man football team taking on the Redskins.

Nice try, guys. You may want to wait for a book generating a lot of buzz being released next month. It's called, "Death to the BCS". A death threat? I'll read that. There might be something to it.


From: John

Please continue to pick against Nebraska. We're just a bunch of dumb farmers and bandwagoners huh? We know a thing or two about talent and teamwork.

Better Corn Fed Than Dead:

Little bit presumptuous aren't we? Nebraska has beaten two corpses (Western Kentucky, Idaho) and a Pac-10 cellar dweller. Each time Nebraska strings a couple of wins together Big Red Nation has little red kittens. How'd that Bill Callahan thing work out for you? Actually, how have the last 10 years worked out for you?

While I was more than impressed with the Washington victory, Nebraska has to get back before it can be back. Check back with me after the Texas game.

 
From: Phil

I love college football and watch games from 11 a.m. CST until midnight. Nothing personal against Boise State but I cannot stand to watch their home games on that ugly blue turf. Bad enough that the field is blue. They add to my dismay by wearing all blue uniforms. Too bad that the NCAA permits crap like this and the red field at Eastern Washington. They can penalize someone for buying a kid a hamburger but let this crap persist.

Fashionista:

That's the first I heard of an extra benefit being compared to Field Turf but what do I know?

Paint is in. Fans paint their faces. Mike Leach paints a different picture of the coaching profession. You might have heard that Oregon State painted its practice field blue this week.  That tells me the Beavers are beaten before they take the field. They're intimating that Boise's blue jerseys on the blue turf make it hard to pick up the ball. Maybe, but 63 times since 2000? That's the Broncos' home record (opposed to two losses) in the last 10 years.

Don't hate the color, hate the playah. The Broncos are darn good.


From: Steve

This year there are 35 bowl games, so 70 of 120 teams will go bowling. This probably means sub-.500 teams will be going bowling. What are the selection rules for sub-.500 teams to go to bowls? i.e. do ALL the 6-6 teams have to select first before a 5-7 teams can be selected? Can a 5-7 team from a conference with lots of bowl tie-ins be selected before a 6-6 at-large team from another conference?

Bowled Over:

Good questions. All the 6-6 teams will have to go before a 5-7 team. If there aren't enough bowl eligible teams to fill all 70 spots then a conference, or team, will have to apply to the NCAA for a waiver. They'll get it too. The NCAA has done the research and believes there will be enough .500-or-above teams. If there aren't, it's on the NCAA.

The exception might be the Sun Belt. It had its champion go to the New Orleans Bowl a few years ago at 5-6. I think it was North Texas. Sun Belt teams typically take guarantee games for the money. Sometimes good teams come into the conference season winless. Hope that helps.


From: Sam

Thought your UT Vols article was very interesting especially with the commentary from Fulmer. Phil needed to step away from the game since Tennessee had become stagnant. He would be a possible and interesting fit for Tennessee but not sure if he'd be the right one. Derek Dooley has his work cut out, but with so much promise from the first half of the Oregon game I look forward to see how all of the freshman squad grows together. I will give them a hug, most certainly! Go Vols!

Vol-ley:

It's clear that Fulmer is lobbying for the AD job. Don't know if you caught it last week but he ripped Lane Kiffin on CBS. This is a disguised shot at AD Mike Hamilton who, in hindsight, never should have hired Kiffin. I know Fulmer still wants to coach but there aren't many good fits out there for him.

I'm curious how the old coach would be accepted as the new AD.

From: Yossel

You write real good!

Yokel, er, Yossel:

You done made me proud.

 

 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com