(KCPW News) Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff says he’s satisfied with the recent decision by the Bowl Championship Series to move to a college football playoff system, which is why he is dropping a federal lawsuit against the organization, at least for now.
“We have officially suspended the investigation. We will continue to monitor it. I am leaving office but I leave behind four very qualified career anti-trust attorneys in my office who are absolutely convinced of the illegality of the current system and who are also very wary of the new plan and will monitor it,” says Shurtleff.
Shurtleff says the goal was always to get the NCAA and BCS to change what he calls an unlawful antitrust scheme. He says the organizations automatic and non-automatic qualifying conferences were illegal; and added Utah helped bring about some of the changes.
“I believe it was a number of factors but yes, I do believe that our investigation and preparing for a lawsuit did have a role to play. We have been talking about and investigating for several years and they had to know that we were getting ready to bring action,” says Shurtleff.
When Shurtleff began investigating the BCS several years ago the University of Utah belonged to the Mountain West Conference, which did not get an automatic bid to a BCS bowl, however the school joined the Pac-12 conference prior to the 2011 football season. A four-team playoff system will begin in 2014.