graduation 2024
Fresno State's student-run newspaper

The Collegian

ADVERTISEMENT
Fresno State's student-run newspaper

The Collegian

Fresno State's student-run newspaper

The Collegian

Fans+at+Fresno+State+football+game+vs+Boise+State+on+Nov.+5%2C+2023+at+Valley+Childrens+Stadium.
Jacqueline Carrillo/The Collegian
Fans at Fresno State football game vs Boise State on Nov. 5, 2023 at Valley Children’s Stadium.

Athletics updates

Fresno State found itself in a lot of local headlines last month.

A lot of buzz has been surrounding Fresno State athletics this semester alone. Whether it’s staff changes, investigations or community hospitals, Fresno State athletics has received the short end of the stick.

Valley Children’s Hospital

The most recent controversial media about Fresno State has come at the hands of a partnership the athletic department has with the nonprofit Valley Children’s Hospital.

Fresno City Councilmembers Miguel Arias and Garry Bredefeld sent a letter to Attorney General Rob Bonta, asking for an investigation into Valley Children’s Hospital and its spending. What was found on the IRS forms was that the hospital paid 28 executives $26.95 million in the 2021 tax year.

Todd Suntrapak, CEO of the hospital, was paid $5.1 million for 2021 and $5.4 million the year prior. The Board of Trustees also authorized a $5 million forgivable loan to Suntrapak as a retention incentive, which was used to buy a home in Carmel, California that has no lien on it.

Additionally, $124.5 million was put into offshore investments in Central America, the Caribbean and Europe. At this moment it is not known if Medi-Cal funds were used in the assets.

Fresno State has been reeled into this controversy due to a 2022 10-year naming right deal of the football stadium, Valley Children’s Stadium. The partnership also funds scholarships and collaborative opportunities for the university’s work in children’s health.

A total of $10 million is to be paid throughout the duration of the deal and in return Valley Children’s hospital receives four seats for round trip travel when the football team travels by charter plane, a suite for each home game with $1,500 for catering and a premium tailgating space in the lot.

Justin Hutson

Before the university put the future of the Fresno State men’s basketball program into the hands of Vance Walberg, it has had to go through two investigations with ex-Head Coach Justin Hutson.

The first took place last March when attorneys representing Huston sent a letter to University President Saúl Jiménez-Sandoval, alleging racial discrimination against Hutson. The letter allegedly threatened legal action, launching a university investigation into Hutson’s claims.

The second investigation was made by an anonymous tip due to alleged NCAA rule violations by Hutson and staff members, which was investigated by the university and verified by the law firm Bond, Schoeneck & King.

The report had a total of 14 allegations, including Hutson talking down to student-athletes and the staff consuming alcohol before and after games.

The investigation cleared the 14 allegations and concluded that the basketball program was under scrutiny due to the “negative setbacks that are simply a part of a collegiate experience,” referring to injuries and contract extension worries.

Hutson will complete his contract on April 30.

Terry Tumey

Terry Tumey, former Fresno State athletic director, announced his departure from the program less than a week after Hutson announced his.

That is five days after the men’s basketball elimination at the Mountain West tournament.

Just like Hutson, it was a mutual agreement between Tumey and the university to go separate ways. He received an extension for his contract last year, which would have been carried out until June 2025.

With the abrupt end to his tenure, he is still owed 80% of his base salary, amounting to $312,000.

Rob Acunto, former deputy director of athletics, has taken the position of interim athletic director following Tumey.

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Collegian
$100
$500
Contributed
Our Goal

Your donation will support the student journalists of Fresno State Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

About the Contributor
Valentina Saldaña
Valentina Saldaña, Managing Editor
Valentina Saldaña is the Managing Editor for The Collegian and a junior at Fresno State. She started working for The Collegian in 2023 as the Sports Editor. Valentina is a Broadcast Journalism major and Philosophy minor and plans to pursue a career as a sports sideline reporter after college.  
Donate to The Collegian
$100
$500
Contributed
Our Goal

Comments (0)

All The Collegian Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *