It is being reported that a booster for the University of Miami allegedly provided thousands of illegal benefits to over 72 athletes between 2002-1010. The same booster was also arrested for a 930 million dollar ponzi scheme…
According to Yahoo Sports:
In 100 hours of jailhouse interviews during Yahoo! Sports’ 11-month investigation, Hurricanes booster Nevin Shapiro described a sustained, eight-year run of rampant NCAA rule-breaking, some of it with the knowledge or direct participation of at least seven coaches from the Miami football and basketball programs. At a cost that Shapiro estimates in the millions of dollars, he said his benefits to athletes included but were not limited to: cash, prostitutes, entertainment in his multimillion-dollar homes and yacht, paid trips to high-end restaurants and nightclubs, jewelry, bounties for on-field play (including bounties for injuring opposing players), travel and on one occasion, an abortion.
Also among the revelations were damning details of Shapiro’s co-ownership of a sports agency – Axcess Sports & Entertainment – for nearly his entire tenure as a Hurricanes booster. The same agency that signed two first-round picks from Miami, Vince Wilfork and Jon Beason, and recruited dozens of others while Shapiro was allegedly providing cash and benefits to players. In interviews with federal prosecutors, Shapiro said many of those same players were also being funneled cash and benefits by his partner at Axcess, then-NFL agent and current UFL commissioner Michael Huyghue. Shapiro said he also made payments on behalf of Axcess, including a $50,000 lump sum to Wilfork, as a recruiting tool for the agency.
To read entire Yahoo Sports article, click here. It is damning. One of the most damning accusations I have read on an NCAA team in a long time.
Yahoo is claiming to have done a full investigation, and audited over 20,000 pages of financial records to back the claims by the booster. Shapiro has been a booster for the Canes for over a decade, and could potentially be the downfall of the entire program.
New Miami head coach Al Golden is now in charge of a sinking ship. NCAA investigators arrived on campus this past Monday.
Golden’s response to the media:
We’re not going to let this knock us backward,” Golden said Tuesday before a morning practice. “We have great kids on this team to the extent that they may have made a mistake. OK, that’s fine. But that’s also part of growing up. What we have to teach them now is if something did occur, let’s be honest and move forward”
Remember Miami also lost their athletic director, Kirby Hocutt, to Texas Tech recently. Hocutt was the AD from 2008-2010. Seems like he got out just in time.
Miami is already on probation and this could be the ‘second strike” violation. Which means there is a possible chance a death penalty sentencing if this is true. While I don’t think that would happen, the option is there.
The NCAA Investigators have been on a rampage this off season and it doesn’t seem to be backing down anytime soon. This has been one of the craziest off-seasons I have seen in a long time.
I guess Shapiro’s theory was, he’s in jail, might as well take everyone else down with him.
What do you think will happen to “The U” ? Are they done, or will they get a slap on the wrist? I say harsh penalties are coming and they will need to send up flares to find their way out.