Utah AG still pursuing BCS antitrust lawsuit
Looking to file a federal lawsuit aimed at disbanding the BCS
system, Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff has put out a request
for proposals from national antitrust firms to help with the
Shurtleff said Thursday he expects the suit, accusing the BCS of
being an illegal monopoly, will be filed this summer. It will seek
damages for schools including the University of Utah and Boise
State that have lost out on millions of dollars over the years
because the existing system keeps non-preferred conferences at a
competitive disadvantage, he said.
That Utah is making the jump to the BCS by joining the Pac-12
Conference in July doesn’t change anything, he said. The flawed
system would remain in place.
His legal threat, first reported by USA Today, comes as
conference commissioners and athletic directors prepare to meet
next week in New Orleans.
Shurtleff said it should take about a month or so to select an
antitrust firm. He is still trying to get more states to join in
filing the lawsuit, ”But if not, I’ll do it alone,” he said.
Shurtleff also deflected criticism that his time would be better
spent on other issues.
He said antitrust violations involving taxpayer-funded
institutions need to be examined especially when many such
institutions are hurting, raising tuition or asking for more
general fund money to help sustain them. ”It’s irresponsible to
look the other way and say, ‘Well, this is just sports,”’ he said.
”The Supreme Court has ruled that antitrust laws apply to the NCAA
and college sports and this needs to be rectified.”