Pro-Playoff Groups Blitz Bowl Championship Series With Corruption Allegations

Most college football fans agree that the method the NCAA decides who gets to play for its football championship is competitively abhorrent, and now a political action committee is claiming that the system is buried in financial malfeasance as well.

Instead of a playoff system to decide a national champion in football as it does in other sports, the NCAA uses the Bowl Championship Series, a set of four bowl games that operate as 501(c)3 charities and have agreements with the major conferences to set up a series of season-ending one-off bowl games. A combination of computer and voter-determined rankings determines the participants.

The Associated Press reports Playoff PAC, an organization of interests who want to take down the BCS and clear the way for playoffs, says BCS bowl honchos took zero-interest loans, coaxed employees to make political donations with the understanding that they’d be reimbursed, and funneled funds to lobbyists, among other indiscretions. All are big no-nos for non-profits.

The PAC wants the Internal Revenue Service to yank the bowls’ nonprofit status.

Fiesta Bowl, other BCS groups accused of financial, lobbying violations

Read more: [AP via AZ Central]


Edit Your Comment

  1. DaveWW says:

    I’m happy to see anything pushing to make a playoff system happen.

  2. lymer says:

    What the hell does this have to do with politics? Why the fuck is there a PAC for this???

    • apd09 says:

      Because of all the non-profit status that the NCAA and its schools along with the BCS are provided. They get to keep all that money and not pay any takes to the government on it even though the BCS TV contract is with Billions of dollars. They claim to give the money back out to the schools in the conferences that are part of the BCS, this is a whole other issue because it is only 6 conferences and not all of D1 school, but they are using PAC’s to keep their non profit status and donating money to politicians to opposed the pulling of that status based on their refusal to use a playoff system and evenly distribute the money to all colleges and not just the “power” conference. Basically the rich get richer through non-profit, and never give other schools a chance to compete with them on a level playing field because they are funneling money to certain colleges to make sure they stay competitive every year because they have large booster populations who, oh yeah, just happen to donate to those politicians as well.

    • Megalomania says:

      NPO status is granted by the government, thus making this immediately a government issue. Plus, why not. You can have a PAC for anything.

    • UCLAri: Allergy Sufferer says:

      How is this not political? This is a huge organization that has significant effects on many major universities in the United States.

    • Southern says:

      Politics, or Consumerism?

    • trey says:

      it is obviously over your head… just go have a juice box and let the adults handle this.

    • RxDude says:

      Probably the same reason Congress holds hearings on MLB.

  3. Fineous K. Douchenstein says:

    Taking away their non-profit status just cuts into the money, that doesn’t actually force them to change their bowl system. The likely result will be that they demand more money in fees to compensate for the taxes they will have to pay.

  4. duxup says:

    ” Junker received an additional $4,500 loan whose interest level was not disclosed”

    Dude makes nearly $600,000 a year and he needs a $4,500 loan?

  5. pop top says:

    College sports are just as corrupt as professional sports? You don’t say…

    All snarkiness aside, I would really love to see a playoff system instituted for college football. I LOVE college football. You could still have the smaller bowls, but change them into the Elite Eight or Final Four games, with the Rose Bowl being the championship as always.

  6. mandy_Reeves says:

    pardon my ignorance…but shouldn’t a teams winning record mandate if they get a bowl bid or not? It’s not run like the NFL? OR NBA or MLB? hmm…that is weird.

    • pop top says:

      In college football you have different conferences (Big Ten, Big Twelve, SEC, Big East, etc.) and those are divided up by divisions (I, II, III)… It gets really complex.

      Check out

    • apd09 says:

      all you need in college football is 6 wins to get to a bowl game, but with the amount of bowls they have over 50% of all schools make it to bowls and not many people care about watching 2 teams that each 6-6 play each other.

      To your point about the championship, the BCS is comprised of 6 power conferences, Big East, Big 12, Pac 10, ACC, Big 10, and PAC 10. Those 6 conference each get an automatic birth into one of the 4 BCS bowl games. The other 2 slots are for at-large teams which usually come from those conferences as well. In the last few years finally teams like Utah, Rice, and Boise State have been able to get themselves into the big money games.

      The BCS makes sure that those conferences get the majority of the money from the major TV contract it holds which allows them to have better facilities, better recruiting, better coaching, and lots of other things that provide a competitive advantage to them. As I mentioned in another response the rich get richer and it is not a level playing field.

      So just because a team goes 12-0 out of the Western Athletic Conference does not guarantee them a shot at a national championship because the writers and coaches keep them down in the polls and the BCS based on the polls and other factors shuts them out for teams from the “power” conferences named above that may be 11-1 or 10-2 because they are a bigger draw for TV.

      It is an unfair system against teams not in those conferences.

      • apd09 says:

        this was supposed to be Big East, Big 12, Pac 10, ACC, Big 10, and SEC, i put PAC 10 in twice.

      • MamaBug says:

        as an SEC fan, I agree wholeheartedly. It’s ridiculous that some perfectly awesome teams get hurt in their chances for a National Championship because their school is crap in the BCS’s eyes. Added to that, I’m all for an extended football season!

      • says:

        You have a few things that are incorrect in your post. First off, there are 5 BCS spots, meaning 10 teams, and 4 at large bids. Last year 2 of the 4 bids went to non-BCS conference teams (TCU and Boise State). Also Rice has not made any of the BCS bowls (the BCS system is relatively new, but the games themselves are old) since the 1940’s. You are likely talking about another Texas school, TCU.

        On a separate point, I am curious why you think the non-BCS conference teams deserve a share of the money. The majority of the money is not only given to the big time programs but is also generated by them. Last year’s Fiesta Bowl, which matched up Boise State and TCU, had its ratings drop by over 20% when compared to the prior year’s game. It was the only one of the 5 BCS games to not improve on the prior year’s TV numbers. What entitles teams like Boise State and TCU to receive extra money that they did not generate themselves? And if you feel they are entitled to that money, where do you draw the line? What makes them more deserving over a FCS (formerly DI-AA) school like Youngstown State, or even a DII or DIII school?

        • apd09 says:

          You’re right, I said Rice when I meant TCU and also about the number of spots. I was going off the top of my head and forgot about the 4 at large.

          As for the money it has more to do with the schools not getting an automatic cut of that money. What makes the Big East more deserving than the WAC other than they are part of the BCS? So Temple a perennial basement type team in the Big East deserves to get a cut of the BCS money whereas Utah or other programs do not. It is an inherently biased system, along with all of college football. It is not the fault of Boise State or Utah or BYU, that Florida, Alabama, Penn State, etc… will not schedule to play them unless it is a home game for the power school. So not only do smaller conference not get the extra money generated by the NCAA and College Football, they never get the chance to show how good they really are and that they deserve to play for the title.

  7. Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

    Bowl Games are non-profit charities?

    I have never heard such a load of tomfoolery in my entire life. That is so ofviously fraud, that I can’t even imagine how many greased pockets are out there letting this thing go on for decades.

  8. u1itn0w2day says:

    What? corruption in an industry with millions and billions of dollars at stake? o NOoo

  9. kerrington.steele says:

    seriously, Consumerist — this is a terribly-written story. there are missing words, phrases that don’t make sense … Phil seems to have left out the word “using” or a variation at least twice, making for sentences that sound like they were written by a fifth-grader. could we PLEASE get some hands-on editing over here, or have a proofreading workshop for your volunteer writers? thanks.

  10. CharlesFarley says:

    As long as Notre Dame continues to get 3 BCS votes, it will be politics as usual.

  11. Donathius says:

    Is it just me or does the idea of computer rankings in the BCS just conjure up an image of an Excel spreadsheet?

  12. Quake 'n' Shake says:

    Technically, the NCAA doesn’t use any system to designate a National Champion in I-A football. They leave it up to the schools (i.e, the BCS) and AP voters to determine who the champion is. When some school wins the “National Championship,” be it the BCS or AP Poll, the NCAA did nothing more than sanction the bowl game in which they played.

  13. PTB315 says:

    I thought polling revealed that the players and coaching staffs were majority in favor of keeping the BCS? I can’t find anything on Google about it, so I could be dead wrong here.