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Fiesta Bowl will pay $1 million fine, remain in BCS

May 11, 2011 |  2:14 pm

Lkdhatnc The Fiesta Bowl has lived to host another game.

A Bowl Championship Series task force on Wednesday released its findings, which will allow the scandal-plagued Fiesta Bowl to remain part of the bowl rotation as long as it adheres to reforms and donates a minimum of $1 million to Arizona youth charities.

The Fiesta, one of four bowls that host the annual BCS championship game, was recently rocked by a financial improprieties scandal that led to the ouster of longtime Chief Executive John Junker.

The BCS report made clear that the Fiesta Bowl would have likely been kicked out of the BCS had it not reacted so decisively in firing Junker and imposed sweeping reforms at an April 23 meeting with the task force in Chicago.

Had these reforms not been made by the Fiesta Bowl, the task force “almost certainly would have recommended the termination of the BCS Group’s involvement with the Fiesta Bowl," the BCS said in a statement.

The BCS task force was headed by Penn State President Graham Spanier. In addition to the $1-million fine, the Fiesta Bowl must also remove any board members with ties to the scandal and agree to annual, independent audits of its finances.

The Fiesta Bowl has agreed to the conditions.

"The fine is substantial, but we are pleased that the BCS has directed that the funds benefit the youth of Arizona," Duane Woods, Fiesta Bowl chairman, said in a statement. "As we have stated, we have learned some painful lessons and have already implemented many of the changes that will prevent this type of malfeasance from happening in the future."


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-- Chris Dufresne  

Photo: Duane Woods, chairman of the Fiesta Bowl board, reacts as he speaks to reporters during the BCS meetings in New Orleans on April 28, 2011. Credit: Gerald Herbert / AP