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Hatch’s grilling spells more trouble for BCS


Wednesday was a bad day for collegiate football’s Bowl Championship Series (BCS) and a good day for Sen. Orrin HatchOrrin Grant HatchSenate Finance leaders call on Commerce to improve the tariff-exclusion process GOP senators raise concerns about babies on Senate floor House passes series of bills to improve IRS MORE (R-Utah) and Utah college football.

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During a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing early in the day, Hatch grilled Attorney General Eric HolderEric Himpton HolderComey's book tour is all about 'truth' — but his FBI tenure, not so much James Comey and Andrew McCabe: You read, you decide Eric Holder headed to New Hampshire for high-profile event MORE about the BCS system, which favors larger schools from major conferences.

Hours later, Holder announced that the Justice Department had informed the NCAA that it has opened an antitrust inquiry into the BCS system.

Hatch has long been working on this issue. He complained in 2009 that the BCS system “excludes teams like the [University of] Utah team ... from national championship contention.” Another Utah school, Brigham Young University, has also felt the sting of the BCS system.

According to the statement from Holder, Assistant Attorney General Christine Varney requested that NCAA President Mark Emmert explain the absence of a playoff system in college football, and what steps the NCAA might have taken to create one.

Hatch’s office had yet to respond to the letter as of press time, but score one for the underdogs and the Utah senator, who is up for reelection in 2012.