Money reason for agents’ corruptness

Published 3:28 am Friday, July 23, 2010

I got an email yesterday from a lawyer in Florida noting he was a licensed agent with the NFLPA and CFLPA, and he was working on a law review to uncovered why the system is corrupt and how to solve the problems created by agents paying players before they are eligible.

Let me save you some time figuring out these reasons.

The violations of players and agents are a direct result of money. Let’s face it, big contracts mean the agent gets a higher percentage of the signing. If he floats a loan to the player in order to get his services, it’s no problem because the college gets penalized, not the agent or player.

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An NCAA scholarship agreement should include a penalty to any athlete and/or agent violating the agreement. Schools should only be penalized if the college is at fault for its lack of institutional control, i.e. Southern Cal.

The Trojans former coach Pete Carroll can cry foul all through his book and to the bank, but the “Hollywood” atmosphere was the fault of Carroll and soon-to-be former athletic director Mike Garrett.

Alabama head coach Nick Saban spoke at the SEC media day and was correct in his comments about the recent rash of agent-related incidents against the league schools.

Saban said “it’s anything but greed that’s creating it right now on behalf of the agents. The agents that do this — I hate to say this — but how are they any better than a pimp? I have no respect for people who do that to young people. None. How would you feel if they did it to your child?”

Uh, Nick, careful. Taking more money at the expense of young college players? Do you remember leaving LSU for the Dolphins, then jumping ship there for Alabama? Good thoughts, just have someone else speak.

Another problem — mainly for basketball — is the AAU circuit and big camps like Nike or even those sponsored by famous players such as Michael Jordan. Those camps are tied with giant corporations looking for future advertising spokespersons.

Let the players play in the summer months but only with their home school. Also allow the colleges to continue holding summer camps for their sports or even conducting activities such as shootouts in order for coaches at other colleges with small budgets to view the talent.

There’s nothing wrong with players getting exposure, but the more arenas out there to play before also opens a lot of doors. Most players and parents don’t know the pitfalls or aren’t aware who the slimy agents might be.

I remember when former Herd football coach Mark Snyder was criticized for not making all practices open to the public at Marshall. Snyder didn’t let anyone on the stadium turf who he didn’t know unless they had credentials, and not just to protect his game plan from the opposition. Snyder was practicing “institutional control.”

Maybe Pete Carroll and Southern Cal should have taken a few notes.

—— Sinatra ——

Jim Walker is sports editor of The Ironton Tribune.