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Utah AG considers antitrust probe

January 07, 2009|Associated press

Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff said Tuesday he was launching an investigation into the Bowl Championship Series for a possible violation of federal antitrust laws after an undefeated Utah team was left out of the national title game for the second time in five years.

Shurtleff contends the BCS unfairly puts schools like Utah, a member of the Mountain West Conference that is without an automatic bid to a BCS bowl, at a competitive and financial disadvantage.

"We've established that from the very first day, from the very fist kickoff in the college season, more than half of the schools are put on an unlevel playing field," Shurtleff said. "They will never be allowed to play for a national championship."

BCS administrator Bill Hancock said he couldn't comment on the investigation until he had seen something in writing from the Utah Attorney General's Office.

"We just don't think it's appropriate to comment until we've seen something to comment on," he said.

Utah finished a 13-0 season with a victory over Alabama in the Sugar Bowl.

Shurtleff said he's committed to doing whatever it takes to produce change.

"It's not about bragging rights. It's a multimillion-dollar -- hundreds of millions -- business where the BCS schools get richer and non-BCS get poorer," he said.

Holt's deal

Former USC defensive coordinator Nick Holt could make up to $2.1 million as part of a three-year contract with Washington.

Holt will make $600,000 his first year and $650,000 in the next two seasons. He was also given a $200,000 retention bonus, but that would have to be returned to the school -- on a sliding scale -- if he leaves before the end of the contract.

The deal makes Holt the highest paid assistant in Washington history. New offensive coordinator Jim Michalczik, who came from California, will make $350,000 a season.

"I had an idea that to get the best, you have to pay," Washington Athletic Director Scott Woodward said.

Tulsa wins

Tulsa's Tarrion Adams rushed for 207 yards and three touchdowns in a 45-13 GMAC Bowl victory over No. 23 Ball State on a soggy night in Mobile, Ala. The Golden Hurricane (11-3) finished with a school-record 11 victories, while Ball State (12-2) lost its final two games.

Tulsa had 439 yards rushing and 632 overall -- hardly slowed by rain that first formed puddles and then covered nearly the entire field during a second-half deluge.


Boston College's Jeff Jagodzinski met with New York Jets officials to discuss their head coaching vacancy -- an interview that was expected to cost him his job with the Eagles. Jagodzinski, who became BC's coach in 2007, was told by Athletic Director Gene DeFilippo that he would be fired if he met with the NFL team. . . . Defensive back Jerraud Powers has decided to forgo his senior season at Auburn and make himself eligible for the NFL draft.

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