Four Big East Conference college football schools filed a second lawsuit Tuesday over the Atlantic Coast Conference expansion, adding Boston College, its athletic director and four ACC officers to the list of defendants.
Connecticut, Pittsburgh, West Virginia and Rutgers allege in the lawsuit that the ACC and Boston College conspired to weaken the Big East and ultimately reap a larger share of television broadcast revenue. Boston College announced Sunday that it would follow football powers Miami and Virginia Tech, which accepted the ACC's invitation in June to join the conference.
Boston College officials called the allegations "unfounded and irresponsible" and struck back with legal action of their own Tuesday, filing a complaint in Massachusetts Superior Court over the Big East's withdrawal provision.
Big East bylaws require 27 months notice to leave the conference, or colleges face a reported $5-million exit fee. Boston College officials say the conference tried to change the policy through an invalid procedure and said the latest complaint against it smacked of politics.
"Some observers suggest this complaint stems from political agendas and ambitions in the state of Connecticut," Boston College spokesman Jack Dunn said in a prepared statement. "In any event, Boston College will vigorously defend itself and its employees against these claims."
ACC officials have already had one such lawsuit thrown out in their favor and say the latest complaint also has no merit.
"It is a sad day for higher education and intercollegiate athletics when universities initiate this kind of unwarranted action -- suing faculty members and conference officials over an institution's freedom to associate itself with whatever conference it chooses," ACC Commissioner John Swofford said in a written statement.
Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal filed an 82-page complaint on behalf of the four schools in Vernon Superior Court.
The schools claim they spent millions of dollars to upgrade their football programs based on the promises from Boston College and Miami that they would be longtime members of the conference.
No court date was immediately set for a hearing on the new complaint.
Yevgeny Kafelnikov's sore left foot forced him out of his first-round match in the Tennis Masters Madrid at Spain.
The Russian lost the first set, 6-3, to Thomas Enqvist of Sweden before quitting the match.
Marat Safin, another Russian, also fell to a Swede, losing, 4-6, 7-5, 6-4, to Jonas Bjorkman.
Four seeded players lost their second-round matches.
Feliciano Lopez delighted the home crowd by beating ninth-seeded Mark Philippoussis, 6-4, 3-6, 6-3; Nicolas Massu ousted No. 13 Gustavo Kuerten, 6-3, 7-5; Juan Ignacio Chela topped No. 11 Martin Verkerk, 6-2, 6-2; and Vincent Spadea outlasted No. 12 Agustin Calleri, 7-6 (5), 3-6, 6-3.
Eighth-seeded Daniela Hantuchova lost to Paola Suarez, 7-6 (2), 7-5, in the opening round of the Swisscom Challenge at Zurich, Switzerland.
In other matches, defending champion Patty Schnyder of Switzerland cruised into the second round with a 6-3, 6-3 victory over Greece's Eleni Daniilidou.
Mary Pierce withdrew from her opening match against Slovenian qualifier Katarina Srebotnik because of a groin injury. Srebotnik was leading, 6-0, 2-0, when Pierce quit.
Kenny Brack had surgery on his broken back, his second operation in two days after a terrifying crash in the IRL's season finale.
The driver was in serious but stable condition at Parkland Hospital in Dallas, Henry Bock, the Indy Racing League's medical services director, said.
"Kenny's spine is stable, and he's moving his legs and toes," said Kevin Morrill, chief neurologist at Parkland. "We will continue to watch him closely over the next couple of days. Kenny is a world-class athlete, and his physical conditioning will really aid him in this situation."
Brack had surgery on his broken thigh and broken ankles Sunday night. He also broke his sternum.
The director of the Tour de France will consider Quebec City's request to play host to the first stage of the 2008 event during the city's 400th birthday festivities.
"The idea of participating in Quebec's celebration is very dear to us," Tour director Jean-Marie Leblanc said.
"However there is an objective, technical, practical side of this to be studied and worked out."
Leblanc noted the Tour de France involves 4,000 people and requires 1,600 vehicles that would have to move quickly from Quebec to France so the race could resume immediately.
While the race has started outside France before, it never has been held outside Europe.
"It will all take time to sort out and we will take all of 2004 and likely part of 2005 to examine it," Leblanc said.
Cheryl Ford scored 18 points and had 10 rebounds, leading the WNBA Select team past South Korea's Wooribank Haesane, 86-53, in an opening game at the inaugural Women's World Cup at Samara, Russia.
Sacramento rookie Kara Lawson finished with 14 points for the WNBA squad and Houston center Michelle Snow added 13.
In the Group B opener, Lauren Jackson's 26 points and 17 rebounds led the Australian champion Canberra Capitals past African runner-up Mambas de Mozambique, 102-45.
Jackson, of the Seattle Storm, was the MVP of the WNBA.