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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Saturday, January 30, 2010

Obama's staff targets BCS

Advertiser News Services

The Obama administration is considering several steps that would review the legality of the controversial Bowl Championship Series, the Justice Department said in a letter yesterday to a senator who had asked for an antitrust review.

In the letter to Sen. Orrin Hatch, obtained by The Associated Press, Assistant Attorney General Ronald Weich wrote that the Justice Department is reviewing Hatch's request and other materials to determine whether to open an investigation into whether the BCS violates antitrust laws.

"Importantly, and in addition, the administration also is exploring other options that might be available to address concerns with the college football postseason," Weich wrote, including asking the Federal Trade Commission to review the legality of the BCS under consumer protection laws.

Several lawmakers and many critics want the BCS to switch to a playoff system, rather than the ratings system it uses to determine the teams that play in the championship game.



Mao Asada nailed two triple axels yesterday to win the Four Continents figure skating title at Jeonju, South Korea in a breakthrough victory just weeks before the Vancouver Olympics.

The feat pushed Japan's four-time national champion ahead of compatriot Akiko Suzuki, who was first after the short program but settled for silver after faltering on her combination jump.

"I landed both triple axels at the Grand Prix finals and again today, so I am very happy with my competitions here in South Korea," Asada said.


College basketball: The University of Memphis has made its case for leniency in the NCAA's punishment of the men's basketball program.

The NCAA Infractions Appeals Committee heard Memphis' argument yesterday in a closed hearing in Indianapolis.

Memphis argued in papers filed with the NCAA that the school was improperly held responsible for an ineligible player despite the NCAA's clearinghouse checking his eligibility twice.

At stake is the 38 wins from the 2007-08 season that ended with an overtime loss to Kansas in the national title game.

Doping: A member of the 1,600-meter gold-medal relay team at the Athens Olympics has accepted a four-year suspension and disqualification of her results for doping.

Crystal Cox, who ran in the preliminaries for the American team led by Sanya Richards, admitted to using anabolic steroids and agreed to the penalty yesterday, the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency said.

She almost certainly will have her gold medal stripped, while the consequences for her teammates aren't yet known.