Friday, March 16, 2007

Senator Questions Pickens' 'Death Pool'

The controversial "Gift of a Lifetime" program that will generate $280 million in life insurance commitments to Oklahoma State athletics has caught the attention of a U.S. Senator.

Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, wants to know more about the program being pushed by Oklahoma State booster T. Boone Pickens, according to a report in Congressional Quarterly. Grassley, the ranking member of the Senate Finance Committee, is noted for keeping an eye on abuses of the nation's tax system.

"Senator Grassley is generally interested in how tax-exempt entities such as universities are using their tax-exempt status or being used for their tax-exempt status," spokeswoman Jill Gerber told the Tulsa World.

Oklahoma State spokesman Gary Shutt told the newspaper that the university is looking at expanding the program and that the school has received calls from other universities asking about the program.

Critics have labeled Pickens' program a "Death Pool."

Pickens is the most powerful booster in college athletes and we've spent considerable time chronicling his maneuvers, including the university's plans to use eminent domain to seize a number of homes and property north of campus to build an athletic village after a "gift" of $165 million from Pickens. The site OK State Expansion has been following those developments.

Thanks to Hester Graphics for the logo.


Mike said...

Shouldn't that be the Wheel of Misfortune?

Anonymous said...

The Tulsa World, not Tribune...

dawizofodds said...

Thanks for that! Correction has been made.