MIAMI (AP) - Orange Bowl officials said Friday they’ve scrapped a planned sponsorship deal with Camacho Cigars.
Larry Wahl, an Orange Bowl spokesman, said in an email that after mutual review, it was determined that it would not be appropriate to go forward with the sponsorship.
The planned sponsorship called for a large presence at several game-day events, including lounges where fans could light up. The three-year deal included the 2013 BCS National Championship. Wahl said that plans were limited to non-game events and geared toward adults.
On Thursday, Sens. Dick Durbin, Frank Lautenberg and Richard Blumenthal, all Democrats, sent letters to bowl officials and the NCAA, asking them to reconsider the deal. It followed a similar effort earlier this week by several public health groups.
The senators and health groups said cigars contain the same toxic, cancer-causing chemicals that cigarettes do. They argued that promoting cigars at the Orange Bowl would send the wrong message to young fans.
This season’s Orange Bowl is scheduled for Wednesday, Jan. 4 in Miami, where No. 23 West Virginia will play No. 14 Clemson.