Yahoo's "10" is Out and It's All About The U

By 11W Staff on August 16, 2011 at 7:37p
100 Comments

Wetzel and Robinson strike again. And this one makes tattoos look like peanuts.

A University of Miami booster, incarcerated for his role in a $930 million Ponzi scheme, has told Yahoo! Sports he provided thousands of impermissible benefits to at least 72 athletes from 2002 through 2010.

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.

Also noted: Seantrel Henderson is a walking curse. His top three during recruitment? USC, Ohio State and Miami.

100 Comments

Comments

Bucks's picture

Jason. Listening to this from Robinson on the radio ... lordie does he claim a ton of documentation & proof. Add in some players corroborating the stories, plus the above^ ... I can't imagine this being a short & relatively sweet investigation. This strikes me as the multiple year, longggg process. Agree?

The Six Fingered Buckeye's picture

This is one of those cases where I think it's PRUDENT to take the USC route and drag it out so you catch everything.

Please, be honest. This is for science.

wiz khalifa's picture

LOLOLOLOLOLOLOL ITZ ALL ABOUT THE U!!!! Death penalty????

Bucks's picture

I believe this is accurate, but might be missing names:

Ray-Ray Armstrong
Travis Benjamin
Dyron Dye
Marcus Forston
Jacory Harris
Aldarius Johnson
JoJo Nicolas
Adewale Ojomo
Marcus Robinson
Sean Spence
Vaughn Telemaque
Olivier Vernon

 

The current players on the list (2 more I think) that have been involved in benefits. Can't imagine suspending 12 players for almost 1/2 a year or more from your team, especially with who a few of these players are.

The Six Fingered Buckeye's picture

Jacory Harris?

Dude was a walking violation the week before the game last year in his Raiders overalls and no shirt. Lookin like Football Urkel.

Please, be honest. This is for science.

Bucks's picture

AHAHAHAHA, i'm sorry but Football Urkel was quite funny. Good laugh there, ty.

Chris Lauderback's picture

Jacory alledgedly exchanged well over 90 calls/texts with Shapiro, played in pool tourneys at his crib and went to nightclubs with Shapiro on numerous occasions. 

Bucks43201's picture

hey, where's George Dohrmann? I'm waiting for him to be "Jonny-on-the-spot" with this Pulitzer Prize-worthy piece about this. Come on, Georgey --- dig deep in the facts, find out about a rigged raffle 3 decades ago. Recycle some garbabe --- oh wait, Jim Tressel didn't coach at the U, so don't hold your breath.

"You win with people." - Woody Hayes

JozyMozy's picture

he's on Ellis watch. No matter what 'Ellis' comes forward with, it really isn't going to salvage much after this story. Ramzy's tweet was spot on, as usual- compared to this, the Dohrmann 30-year-old raffle HOW DEEP DOES IT GO article might as well have been finger painted. So much evidence.

NeARBuckeye's picture

Whatchu talkin' 'bout Willis? Still going to complain about that ring?

Maybe this will stop Miami fans from complaining about that pass interference call... Y'all shouldn't even have been there!

The_Lurker's picture

For every Miami fan that whines about the pass interference call, all I can say is....you're right, it wasn't PI, it was defensive holding. #StillAPenaltyAndFirstDown

Bucks's picture

Yeah, I see all the allegation links are active now for each individual:

 

http://sports.yahoo.com/investigations/news;_ylt=Aq7A9Bbz.RUGVxoO4I2XBEx...

Buckeyebrowny919's picture

the list of players and evidence..is..unlike anything i've ever seen

To give anything less than your best, is to sacrifice the gift - Steve Prefontaine

JozyMozy's picture

definitely. this shit is unreal. So organized and detailed...screenshots of phone records and credit card statements corroborating what Shapiro said? Are you kidding me? Sports Illustrated look like complete amateurs. 

NYC Buckeye's picture

Us, USC, Miami, UNC, Oregon, Alabama (couple years ago)...Honestly, all this clearly shows its time to change the rules, its ridiculous...  congrats BYU, your the only clean run program left...

NeARBuckeye's picture

Also... Miami could look to be a pretty easy game this year.

Bucksfan's picture

H.O.L.Y. S.H.*.T

Bucks's picture

I won't say I feel terribly for Golden. The man is getting a decent paycheck. With that said, there is no conceivable way he would know these things. When he did, it was well after taking the reigns. Coaches want to win/succeed. He has inherited a pile of manure.

builderofcoalitions's picture

Somehow, I bet he opts out of year 2 of that contract.

Because we couldn't go for three.

Matt M.'s picture

My favorite quotes thus far:

"I'll get you a prostitute and a yacht! It's like a Tupac party!"

"It's yachts! It's prostitutes! It's abortion! It's an episode of the Sopranos!"

From Yahoo Sports Radio a few minutes ago. Congrats, boys. I'm listening.

Nappy's picture

Just wow.  I have zero problem with players getting a little something on the side, but this?  $50,000 payments, hookers, free meals/drinks, trips for parents, recruiting violations, paid abortions.  Is there an NCAA rule they didn't break?  If people were calling for us to get the death penalty, I wonder what punishment they would feel this warrants.

Fan of bacon since 1981

jjbinks11's picture

Good friend of mine suggested this, so I opened up Photoshop and threw this together really quick...

KL Row - "We dot the 'i' and you don't!"

October 1, 2011 - Michigan State University

Lucys Daddy is a Buckeye's picture

Simply awesome.

...And when we win the game, We'll buy a keg of booze....And we'll drink to old Ohio til we wobble in our shoes...

Kalamazoo Steve's picture

What's really sad is they haven't been all that good in a while. Free hookers don't buy what it use to.

Normal Buck's picture

I was thinking the same thing. . .

William's picture

That's what happens with 5 dollar hookers, they don't bring in anything but 3-star players..

The Vest-er's picture

I'm sensing the WWLiSR willing have this scroll on the bottom and skip bayless will say that this is just da U being da U. They'll bring in Michael Irvin, Warren Sapp, Willis McGahee, and dig Ken Dorsey out of the mall kiosk that sells pillow pets to provide unbiased opinion. Larry Coker will still complain about pass interference before they cut his mic and drive him back to the nursing home. I just saved you hours of watching the tube. You're welcome.

Fundamentals are a crutch for the talentless.

Rfahncke's picture

Names! Names! and....MORE NAMES!  Most of em sayin' "yep, all true".

 

This wont be on "Outside the Lines"......this is gonna be a full length feature on the big screen.  This story is so extravegant it could make more money than they guy spent!  Holy Crap! 

 

"Have you earned your buckeye today?"

Bucks's picture

I just can't get over the utter DATABASE of information on the story page. Links for everything, statements, receipts, phone records ... and keep in mind this isn't suppose to be all the evidence they have. While it seems odd to give congrats to a department that ran their stories on tOSU, this is a pretty incredible piece of reporting they've put together.

Now the question remains how much of this *proof* stands up to scrutiny, but lordie lordie. Pretty staggering.

Also, saw some Miami board people saying Golden was either on locally or released a statement, basically alluding that there will be suspensions. That isn't breaking news obviously, but just throwing it out. The question is ... how big are they going to go on the suspensions?

Riggins's picture

Database is right.  Good night!  Yahoo has them dead to rights if even a quarter of this information is accurate. Impressive bit of investigative reporting. 

ESPN, if you would be so kind as to angle that spotlight a wee bit south.  Lower...little lower....down a little more....yea, Coral Gables.  You got it.  It's all about THE U.

rampageripster's picture

Miami fans... welcome to the clenched anus' club... lube for the media at the door

Cause I couldn't go for three

Jason Priestas's picture

I just wish that there were more than 19 of them to feel this.

rampageripster's picture

my graduate advisor is a U fan and he gave me lots of crap for the Tat5 stuff... I want to return the favor... but I also want him to sign my thesis lol

Cause I couldn't go for three

Jason Priestas's picture

Patience... patience... patience. Once it's signed, then you strike.

builderofcoalitions's picture

Get a notary...or a Yahoo! investigative reporter to pose as one.

Because we couldn't go for three.

bucknut24's picture

Unbelievable!  This has to be the worst case since SMU.

awwwwwwop's picture

I know. This is literally unbelievable. seriously.

"Who cares? Go Bucks." - Aaron Untch

Poe McKnoe's picture

Dohrmann Got Served.

matti's picture

so i broke down and had to go to the 4 letter and see and yah miami is on top of the ncaaf section also read an article there and holy shit the school named a player lounge after this guy so yah they def knew what was going on. my bet is mark may lets them go and blames tOSU for miamis problems..lol

millertime2011's picture

wow. unbelievable. this is SMUesque. this is dealth penalty stuff. this is also the best and easiest to read reporting i've maybe ever seen. Though you hurt OSU, i have to applaud you Yahoo, this is what reporting is supposed to be. 11 month investigation (as opposed to ESPiN's 3 hours). Looks like there's gonna be a sequel to "Tha U" 30for30

TLB's picture

Anyone surprised that the coaches named are now at Alabama and Florida?

Bucks's picture

What won't surprise me is some of these coaches at other schools, being shown the door before this (lengthy) investigation is concluded.

I'm also somewhat expecting to hear some resignations within the Miami AD & Pres structure. There is just too much to look at here. Golden is in for a rough ride. He keeps saying he had no clue of this stuff at all, while Miami says they notified the NCAA about these allegations a year ago. (Miami claims when they asked for proof, they were refused any of it). If they knew full well what was on the horizon, not informing Golden is just disgusting.

MackRM408's picture

After reading everything out there about this Miami scandal, its just makes me realize even more now, how awful of a person jim tressel is. 

William's picture

I hope this is sarcasm.

millertime2011's picture

+ 1 million. One of the videos on espn is "miami players may have made mistakes." Really? made mistakes? where was that with osu?

Another Jason's picture

The "May have made mistakes" line was Golden's I think so that's not really on ESPN.  Also not on ESPN: anything about this story.  On their site, it's one of a bunch of 8-point "headlines."  How is this not the biggest thing happening in the sports world right now?

bucknut24's picture

Were the hell does the NCAA begin?  So many violations it's mind boggling.

Denny's picture

You know who's gotta regret all of this the most?

The dumb assholes at Miami who didn't take any illegal benefits while all of this was going on. What a bunch of schmucks.

Taquitos.

Bucks's picture

That was incredibly wrong & also very funny.

btalbert25's picture

Robinson was on sportcenter a little while ago, he doesn't believe any program will ever get the death penalty again, because of how bad it really did destroy SMU.  That being said, any sanctions Miami will get will have to set the program back a decade.  I just wish this story could've broke a couple of months ago.  We'll never hear about Ohio State's stuff again lol. 

Yahoo Sports definitely has the best investigative journalism group out there.  We can be mad that Ohio State was one of their targets, but let's face it, if the players and Tressel followed the rules we wouldn't be here right now.  That's on them.  Wetzel and company just did their job.

One last point, is anyone surprised about anything that ever happens at Da U?

Jason Priestas's picture

I don't think we'll see a death penalty either, but man, what does the NCAA do here?  Are we talking about a ten year bowl ban or the loss of 15 or more scholarships a year? Maybe. Maybe more.

I have a lot of respect for Wetzel and Robinson and I think a lot of people on this site do as well. Even though they delivered our suck (which was going to happen whether they broke it or not) via a leak, the work they do is good for college football. These guys enjoy being investigative journalists and their work reflects that.

Regarding the U being the target, it's funny b/c it should have been the team on the top of everyone's minds but they weren't b/c they haven't really been a good team since Coker's 2nd season.

 

btalbert25's picture

I definitely think most people here recognize how good the Yahoo guys are.  When you read their work and it involves other schools, you can appreciate it much more lol.  These guys are awesome, I'm glad that they take the time do their research, and cover all the bases.  They don't just run out with some half assed piece for ratings.  Their great work is truly making everyone else look stupid.  Perhaps their is hope for the media yet, or maybe they are just the last of a dying breed.

I have no idea how the NCAA is going to handle Miami.  It's going to be crazy.

Bucks's picture

They'll def. make use of the new investigators they put up job postings for a month or so ago!

acBuckeye's picture

While on the whole, I think Yahoo does the best job covering college football, Wetzel did put out one very ESPiN'ish article that pissed me off. He said OSU's case was worse than USC's, which anyone with half a brain knows isn't true. Other than that, they do a great job over there, and knowing that the head honchos at the WWLiSR are fuming that they got obliterated by Yahoo again, makes me smile.

NeARBuckeye's picture

I'll give Rife one thing, he's no snitch.

millertime2011's picture

"Certainly it wasn't the players, who, though they knowingly jeopardized their eligibility and flaunted their status as football players, could no more resist the temptations of South Beach than any other 18- or 19-year-old. We didn't get mad at Ohio State players for getting free tattoos; we got mad at their coach for finding out and doing nothing about it." Really Mandel? I'm pretty sure every called for blood back in december

Pam's picture

If no one is mad at the tOSU player's, maybe Stew can explain why TP is essentially being blackballed by Roger Godell.

Bucksfan's picture

I want to see Kellen Winslow riffin' about being a "Soldia" while sipping a pina collata in this guy's swimming pool.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I82BPA5QAaQ

Jeff @ Fox Sports Ohio's picture

Knowing what we know now, I'm thinking that when Winslow hurt that kid, he knew he was going to get 5 thousand dollars and the adrenaline may have pumped him up enough to taunt the kid.

AngelHeartsBuckeyes's picture

So did Willis have to give money back when he got laid out in the MNC?

I just cant get past all his verbal vomit about deserving to have the ring because tOSU are such cheaters.  What an ass-clown.

Buckeye born and bred. Buckeye til I'm dead.

TLB's picture

Paul Dee's wikipedia page::

Paul Dee is the former General Counsel and Athletic Director (AD) of the University of Miami (UM) in Coral Gables, Florida. He held the position of AD from 1993 until 2008, when he stepped down and Kirby Hocutt was tabbed as his replacement

Under Dee's watch, the University of Miami athletic program was sanctioned by the NCAA in 1995. Eighty students, 57 of whom were football players, falsified their Pell Grant applications, illegally securing more than $220,000 in federal grant money. Federal officials described the scam as "perhaps the largest centralized fraud ... ever committed in the history of the Pell Grant program."[1][2] Moreover, the University provided over $400,000 worth of other, improper payments to Miami football players. The NCAA also ruled that the University failed to wholly implement its drug-testing program, and permitted three football student-athletes to compete without being subject to the required disciplinary measures specified in the policy.[3]

According to news reports, from 2002 through the end of Dee's tenure, booster Nevin Shapiro provided Miami football and basketball players with numerous benefits that violated NCAA rules including hundreds of thousands of dollars, gifts, prostitutes, access to yachts and housing, and expensive social events. [4]

After leaving Miami, Dee became Chairman of the Committee on Infractions at the NCAA, the committee responsible for enforcing NCAA rules and punishing violators.

 

Jason Priestas's picture

Wonder how he's feeling after hanging USC last year.

NeARBuckeye's picture

I think Dee is going to end up resigning in the upcoming months. This doesn't look good for Dee, Miami, or the NCAA. We all know that College Football is a big business, and if the NCAA is the law, then Dee is the equivalent of a corrupt judge. I don't think sanctions would get repealed or reduced, but things are going to start looking really bad if it's proven without a doubt that he had prior knowledge and simply turned a blind eye towards Miami.

At this point I think it may be entirely possible that he steered attention away from Miami's program since any revelation about his inability to police Miami's program would result in his removal as Committee Chairman. 

Jeff @ Fox Sports Ohio's picture

1) Can Nebraska get rings for the 2001 title game?

2) When did Jim Tressel know about these allegations?

Baroclinicity's picture

I think the most alarming thing here is the bounties (besides the abortion... not touching that with a 10ft. pole).  I wonder what lengths were deemed appropriate in their minds to get $5k?  Maybe Tebow et. al. should be thankful there wasn't a career ender in there.  And if it comes out that the coaches knew about the bounty payments?  Sex and dollars are one thing... bodily harm is another.

When you're holding a hammer, everything looks like a nail.

LadyBuck's picture

That was mighty detailed and impressive journalism. I absolutely repect what they went through to go and find all the evidence and consult with everyone involved. It's absolutely mindblowing that for 8 years straight, Miami truly got away with murder. I wonder what people are going to say about this one.

As for the abortion thing, his comment truly, truly disturbed me. 

Either way, Miami, welcome to the club. And we thought it would be a long season for us.

Bucksfan's picture

Maybe now, finally, the rest of the college football world will view what transpired at Ohio State with a bit more perspective.

flipbuckeye's picture

Eh. I doubt it will get the same coverage that OSU got.

LadyBuck's picture

I agree. We were supposed to be squeeky clean. Miami, not so much. Some of the players listed were not exactly the most upstanding sort. Our image was ruined, Miami just had some light shed on them.

303 Buckeye's picture

I just read the McGahee allegations.  I would play pretty damn hard with those incentives haha (500 bucks per 100 yards?!).  Also this is so frickin sweet

Pam's picture

Willis gets the award for the worst free suit ever.

thorvath22's picture

Two things, first we have to beat them this year for the sake of all that is good in the universe and second there is no way I will be able to watch this game with the volume on...

Is it Saturday Yet's picture

I've always hated the delay between the tv and radio. I could listen to PK anytime. He may have to mention the garbage but he wouldn't drag it out.

millertime2011's picture

anyone else notice that it is still not a top story on espn.com? sure it's on that sidebar, but this deserves to be the top story in the sports world, no doubt about it

Denny's picture

I dunno; I did three push-ups this morning. Kind of feel like that warrants front-page coverage.

Taquitos.

BucksfanXC's picture

Listen guys, I agree that ESPN sucks and should probably covering this at least as much as everyone else is (ie MGoBlog's graphic illustration), BUT...

When OSU allegations came out, my first reaction was, "Stop glorifying what some convict druggie says about us to get his fifteen minutes of fame, plus book deals, not to mention a reduced sentence for his, you know, breaking of the law." So, maybe we need to commend ESPN for not jumping on the OMG Hookers and Abortions! bandwagon. Well, commend might be going a bit far, but you know what I mean.

Also, this is obviously much worse than what went on at OSU, goes deeper, and for longer (that's what she said), but still, glass houses people.

“Any time you give a man something he doesn't earn, you cheapen him. Our kids earn what they get, and that includes respect.”  - Woody

Nappy's picture

I would agree with this if it was only some convict making baseless claims to get hs 15 minutes, but this is far from that.  Theres a paper trail and a mountain of evidence that goes back years.  Even some former players are confirming the accusations. You cant ignore all the evidence and just claim none of this is true because the guy making the claims has a criminal record. 

Fan of bacon since 1981

BucksfanXC's picture

Yeah, I agree there's a paper trail and corroborating evidence, etc. and there was eventually in our case too. But remember how blown out of control the media got over our scandal, which, in their defense, was a scandal and people did seem to love to read about it. I just hope this doesn't get the same treatment, because nobody deserves that treatment. I also remember when our troubles first surfaced, I thought UofM fans would feel some (maybe at least a tiny bit) of sympathy because they just went through this whole "OMG they violated rules" that eventually really boiled down to "we stretched too much." Not that Tat5 boiled down that far, and I'm certainly not suggesting that Miami's HookerGate will boil down near that far either, but I do think all these "scandals" do come back down to Earth a bit from what they are initially reported as, because some of it is not true, some of it is true but unable to be proven to the NCAA COI, etc. So I don't necessarially feel sorry for da U, but I also do think, "HaHa you broke rules! [too]" is the correct response here.

“Any time you give a man something he doesn't earn, you cheapen him. Our kids earn what they get, and that includes respect.”  - Woody

Nappy's picture

I see your point but even if only 25% of what is in the Yahoo! article is true, it's worse than almost every other infraction case I can remember over the last 15 years or so.  As far as not being deserving of the media attention, I disagree.  What pissed me off about our overwhelming coverage was that most of what was being reported has been disproven or lacked valid evidence.  In this case there seems to be more evidence than anyone could possible dream up.

Yahoo! Sports audited approximately 20,000 pages of financial and business records from his bankruptcy case, more than 5,000 pages of cell phone records, multiple interview summaries tied to his federal Ponzi case, and more than 1,000 photos. Nearly 100 interviews were also conducted with individuals living in six different states. In the process, documents, photos and 21 human sources – including nine former Miami players or recruits, and one former coach – corroborated multiple parts of Shapiro’s rule-breaking.

This is enough to convince me that at least half of this is true.  Is it possible that some of this is being blown out of proportion? Of course.  But you can't convince me that they will not be deserving of the media spotlight.

 

Fan of bacon since 1981

BucksfanXC's picture

Yeah, I get what you're saying. And I'm not trying to downplay abortion/hooker/mercenary payments. But my response to this is a bit tempered I guess, probably due to the fact that my favorite school just went through this process and I know it's not fun. My main point was, hey guys, let's keep some perspective and there's no point in piling on them.

“Any time you give a man something he doesn't earn, you cheapen him. Our kids earn what they get, and that includes respect.”  - Woody

Denny's picture

Highfive. Totally agree. The worst part of all of this is mini-Bernie Madoff is getting all sorts of publicity for being a giant doucher.

Taquitos.

CLT Silver Bullet's picture

ESPN looks pretty lame right now.  This is the front page story on every major sports website except ESPN!

Also saw a lot of talk about the OSU vs. Miami game being lableing it a "clash of convicts".  This is really pissing me off that they are treating these Buckeyes like they are criminals for selling their own stuff!

Bucksfan's picture

What pisses me off about that is not that the game is between two teams that just got boned or is about to get boned by the NCAA, the circumstances surrounding both are all true.  What bothers me is that none of those players involved will actually be playing in the game.  So, it's not really a clash of convicts.

TLB's picture

This story is going to impact the entire college football world before it is done.

It is already hitting the B1G with Barry Alvarez and his lost investments to Shapiro of about $660K and Purdue with QB castoff Robert Marve.

SouthBayBuckeye's picture

TRESSEL KNEW ABOUT THIS BEFORE THE SUGAR BOWL. HOW DEEP DID IT GO??

 

//DOHRMAN'D

Banned from ATO since June 3rd 2PMish PST

GoBucks713's picture

How deep did it go? That's what she said to durrrrman.

-The Aristocrats!

flipbuckeye's picture

Uhhh... NSFW.  Or anyone's eyes for that matter.

Bucks's picture

Well, it's late for me & many are probably asleep but it looks like the popcorn should be prepared in time to watch a doosy (Plenty of time to prepare). The NCAA has notified Miami that they will potentially look at the "Willful Violators" clause, eliminating the 4 year statute. Don't think it is surprising to anyone who read even a snippet regarding this.

 

http://sports.yahoo.com/investigations/news;_ylt=AjliJdhgoSN8y8GZN7Hk9J4...

 

If they actually do invoke that ability, and find corroborating evidence that passes their *standards* I just can't imagine Miami Football surviving.