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Football: Bieniemy to likely face questioning

By Jessica Bach and Bruce Tran

April 5, 2004 9:00 pm

UCLA running backs coach Eric Bieniemy is expected to be called
by the Independent Investigative Commission for questioning
regarding his experiences as an assistant coach at the University
of Colorado, the Boulder Daily Camera reported.

A group appointed by the University of Colorado Board of
Regents, the commission is investigating recent allegations that
the Buffalo football program used alcohol and sex to lure
recruits.

These allegations were brought to light after a former CU
student alleged she was raped during a recruiting party.

While at CU, Bieniemy was the leading recruiter and running
backs coach for the 2001 and 2002 seasons, during the time the
student and several others alleged they were raped by
Buffalo football players. 

Bieniemy was unable to be reached for comment.

Though Bieniemy was never questioned, in several
depositions taken in 2003 for the lawsuit brought against CU, the
coach’s history at CU was mentioned in part to set a pattern
of behavior accepted by the university.

Several people were questioned if they had prior knowledge that
Bieniemy assaulted a campus parking attendant, which resulted in a
one-year ban from the Boulder campus.

Also in April 2001, just three months after being hired,
Bieniemy was arrested for driving under the influence and was
docked a month’s pay.

Bieniemy, came to UCLA with a reputation as an up-and-coming and
passionate coach and a relentless recruiter.

At the time of his hiring, UCLA coach Karl Dorrell said he was
well aware of Bieniemy’s history, but that he believed what
Bieniemy brought to the table far outweighed the risks.

With the commission not yet solidifying its list of people to
question, it is unknown whether Bieniemy will testify or have to
miss any spring practices, which begin Wednesday.

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