The cops are crashing the Fiesta.
April 1, 2011 12:42 AM Subscribe
posted by azpenguin (18 comments total)
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A long investigation into the Fiesta Bowl
has produced a long and damning report (link goes to long PDF)
detailing a culture of corruption under CEO John Junker. The report details gifts given to lawmakers
, college administrators and others to help boost the bowl's stature in college football.
Among the most egregious violations concerns the practice of the bowl directing employees to make political contributions, and then reimbursing the employees, a blatant violation of campaign finance laws and regulations regarding non-profit organizations. The political fallout
is spreading fast and may end up rivaling the upheaval from the AzScam scandal.
Meanwhile, the Bowl Championship Series
organization has announced that the Fiesta Bowl may be in jeopardy of losing its spot among the BCS bowls, but has softened its stance
a little amid reports that top BCS officials were among the recipients of Fiesta Bowl gifts. BCS critics are arguing
that this shows the systemic corruption present in the bowl system. Proponents of a playoff are likely going to use the report and ensuing investigations as ammunition in their battle to scrap the BCS.
The report is likely to unleash a chain reaction of investigations and indictments. The NCAA is feeling pressure to investigate the entire bowl system, and they suddenly have even bigger problems on their plate
. State governments will probably probe individual bowls, and Congress may decide to insert itself into the fray. With possible felonies committed,
criminal cases linked to the scandal could keep this in the news for quite some time.