Jeremy Bloom's skiing and football future, Bloom said he's still determined to participate in both sports."> Jeremy Bloom's skiing and football future, Bloom said he's still determined to participate in both sports.">

Court Denies Bloom Appeal

While a Colorado court of appeals on Thursday upheld an earlier court ruling that has a negative impact on <a href="">Jeremy Bloom's</a> skiing and football future, Bloom said he's still determined to participate in both sports.

Bloom's lawyers had filed an appeal in recent weeks about an earlier ruling that denied their attempt for an injunction against the NCAA and CU that would allow Bloom to take endorsements related to his skiing, and play college football at Colorado.

On Thursday, the Colorado appeals court rejected the appeal.

Bloom, who earlier this year announced his intention to seek endorsements for his skiing as he pursues the chance to ski for the U.S. Olympic team, played football for the Buffs in 2002 and 2003. During that period, he did not take endorsement money, but participated in World Cup ski races during the football offseason.

However, in order to give himself a chance at winning a Gold Medal, Bloom said he needs money for a personal coach and other expenses. Olympic skiers typically make money through product endorsement related to their sport.

The NCAA outlaws collegiate athletes making money through endorsements, even if the sponsorships are not related to the sport they play in college.

However, the NCAA allows athletes who have competed professionally and been compensated in a sport, to then compete collegiately in a different sport. For example, CU quarterback Joel Klatt earned a signing bonus and a salary for several seasons as a minor league baseball before he walked on, and eventually won a scholarship, at CU as a football player.

The difference between professional baseball and World Cup and Olympic skiing is that skiers are not paid a salary and make their money, and therefore fund their athletic endeavor, through endorsements. Bloom and his lawyers have contended all along that it is unfair that the NCAA makes a distinction about the two sources of professional athletics-related income.

However, Bloom said Thursday that the court's ruling wasn't the end of his quest to participate as a professional skier and amateur football player.

"While I certainly respect the court's decision to not overturn the lower court, it is still my intention to play college football," Bloom said. "It is the NCAA's responsibility to determine whether I will be eligible for collegiate competition next fall and not the courts."

CU interim head coach Brian Cabral said, "We're going to continue to support Jeremy and let everything take its natural course. We're disappointed for him, and hopefully something can still be done to keep his dreams of doing both (football and skiing) alive."

In a statement, as he has the past two years, Bloom again challenged the NCAA to look at its policies regarding two-sport participation.

"The NCAA needs to evaluate the growing number of athletes competing in alternative sports such as the winter and Summer X-Games and the Olympics," he said. "It is my hope that the NCAA will realize that is unfair to exclude all of us from collegiate competition. Ultimately, the NCAA will determine my fate and I anxiously await their decision."

Colorado football officials have maintained that Bloom will not participate in the 2004 season unless the NCAA changes its ruling on the Bloom case.

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