FanDuel - WFBC

April 23, 2006

3,000 Square Feet of Trouble: Could a $757,500 house lived in by Reggie Bush's family cause every game he has played in to be forfeited?

posted by Ying Yang Mafia to football at 06:44 PM - 24 comments

Will it hurt USC? I don't think so. As every knows, the NCAA only goes after crooked schools, and the only crooked schools are in the SEC (just look at the treatment that Ohio State got after their treatment of athletes). How will it affect Bush? Probably not at all. I still think he'll be the number one pick (at which point he can get his family a nice new house).

posted by Bonkers at 09:01 PM on April 23

If he has declared himself eligible for the NFL draft, what is the big stink? Listen, he's through with college football and it does not appear the home was a direct gift to Reggie. If he was going to come back and play next year, well because of the rules maybe look into it. But, what is ethically wrong with it anyway. In my opinion college athletes should be paid; not near the level of professionals, but something. Look at the dollars colleges make off, yes, athletes. If no more than a few hundred dollars a month!! Last year I bought 3 ball caps with a college insignia on it. They cost me with taxes, $22. Imagine 500 caps being purchased..., well! College is not professional but come on. Timing is crucial and don't take that the wrong way. If something is not found out almost immediately, there should be no thinking in arrears!

posted by sports1 at 10:35 PM on April 23

The games have been played, and it makes no difference where Reggie Bush's family lived or what was the source of the finances that made it possible, the record should not be changed. I live, however, in the shadows of Southern Methodist University who was issued The NCAA Death Penalty a few years ago, and can accept something negative for the school. Maybe they could be required to turn their 2005 National Footbal Championship trophy around to show the backside for a half a day. That would about even them up with the hit that Ohio State had to suffer. Yet, nothing will happen to USC and Reggie Bush will still be drafted first. About the money? Those university sports departments take in so much money that the "Freebie" that they give the athletes in terms of education is not a drop in the bucket by comparison. The best athletes share a little of the loot, while those who support the great ones give a lot more than they get. I am sympathetic with them. And, Bonkers, just because historically the only way Alabama and Tennessee could ever beat Auburn was to keep them on NCAA probation, that doesn't mean that Texas A&M has joined the SEC.

posted by Bud Lang at 10:36 PM on April 23

As a USC alumni, this is just terrible. But if true the school should pay the price.

posted by billsaysthis at 11:25 PM on April 23

The players make millions for the schools, and get next to nothing in return. If someone offered his family a house to stay in so he would sign with an agent, who cares.... Did it make him run faster, or a better player?

posted by megyed at 12:10 AM on April 24

Smokey, this is not 'Nam. This is football. There are rules. The NCAA rules are pretty clear about what student atheletes and their familes are and are not allowed to receive from professional agents, etc. While it would suck for the NCAA in general (and USC in specific) if they had to mark all of those games as forfet, those are the rules. Why have the rules and penalties at all if you're not going to enforce them? Now, if we are going to argue about whether the rules are fair and just, that is another story all together, and at that point, I will agree that it is possibly a dumb rule. But, as the rules are laid out now, if this house was a gift from an agent, the NCAA is obligated, IMO, to follow its own rules and forfeit the games. I think it is too early to say whether a rule has been violated with any certainty. It doesn't look good for USC as it is being portrayed right now, though. (and, indeed, Reggie Bush will be blissfully unaffected by this)

posted by Joey Michaels at 12:29 AM on April 24

what is going on

posted by tim at 12:50 AM on April 24

billsaysthis: As a USC alumni, this is just terrible. But if true the school should pay the price. (Ahem)...alumnus.

posted by L.N. Smithee at 02:54 AM on April 24

C'mon. Would the NCAA be happier if the kid's family lived in a shanty somewhere? These kids work, and bring in, plenty for their respective schools, and the NCAA rules are ruthless toward them. Bush brought in loads of money for USC. If it's a question of Bush getting unfair money, let USC pay for it out of the money they brought in from Bush and the teams he was on, not punish the entire team with forfeits. This student-athlete crap is just that. And it starts with the schools--check out graduation rates for the "student-athletes." Some schools are better than others, but by and large, they stink. The school is primarily interested in the money the "student-athlete" brings in on the field. The schools and NCAA are just being hypocritical about this instance and their so-called "rules."

posted by roberts at 05:19 AM on April 24

it does not appear the home was a direct gift to Reggie What does it appear the house was?

posted by yerfatma at 05:21 AM on April 24

If he has declared himself eligible for the NFL draft, what is the big stink? The big stink is the fact that Bush's family received the use of the $750K house in March 2005 -- before last season. To put that in perspective, Arkansas once received three years punishment for a booster paying 20 athletes an extra $4,300 total on their part-time work for his company.

posted by rcade at 06:34 AM on April 24

No not a surprise, or a giant tragedy and I agree that the likely scenario is Bush being unaffected and USC not receiving a terrible punishement (but perhaps some, it would depend on the rigours of the investigation). However, we're all very busy blaming the school and the system, but don't you think that Bush's relatives are also a little short-sighted and perhaps stupid? I mean, you can't wait one year until his giant contract comes down to live in luxury? You'd rather jeopardize his eligibility and reputation for one lousy year? Of course, Bush himself could have accepted the house and offered it to his family - but I would hope that they'd turn it down. Maybe I've got my head too far in the clouds, though. Frankly, it all just looks so par for the course.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 07:44 AM on April 24

I agree with you Roberts, but i also agree that famine is bad and we should feed everyone in Africa. But how? If schools start paying kids to play then the top programs get all the big names and it becomes the NFL2. Plus the Notre Dames, USC, etc will be "out-paying" all the other schools and it would get really boring really quick. It's close already, you right, but right now they're keeping at least some respectabillity to it. If you or your boosters pay a player, you're in big trouble. That has to be a very strictly enforced rule. And if someone offered me a 3,000 sq ft house for my mom, i'd take it in a heartbeat... Then again, i'm not a year from a 10-million dollar signing bonus. This student-athlete crap is just that. And it starts with the schools--check out graduation rates for the "student-athletes." Some schools are better than others, but by and large, they stink. The school is primarily interested in the money the "student-athlete" brings in on the field. The schools and NCAA are just being hypocritical about this instance and their so-called "rules."

posted by SummersEve at 08:53 AM on April 24

All right, I'll amend my statement. SEC schools and Texas schools, and some occasional outliers like GaTech. But other than that, in case of elligbility issues, as long as your school has a good reputation, the NCAA will fall on you like a pile of feathers. Even if they end up forfeiting games, it won't matter. Reggie Bush got to the pros, USC got to the championships and got a heck of a lot of money to play there, and will have the reputation as a football powerhouse will be secured. USC will get away with it, they'll just have some official blank spots in their record. (This is provided USC knew what Bush is doing, which hasn't been proved to me yet).

posted by Bonkers at 09:34 AM on April 24

If Bush and his family didn't know that this guy was trying to open his own marketing business and was contacting agents on his behalf, then maybe they are okay. Bush didn't pick the agent that Michaels had contacted nor did Michaels' company for marketing. It is certainly suspicious though.

posted by bperk at 09:43 AM on April 24

I think we would all be naive to think that most of the great athletes of college football don't receive some "special gifts". It's a matter of who is most careful about keeping it quiet. Truth be known, Bush didn't win the Heisman Trophy because he lived in a nice house. He's not expected to be the NFL No.1 draft pick because someone offered to move him and his family out of they're apartment. He won because he's an extraordinary athlete. He won because of hard work. I have to agree with the other posts. These kids work, study, practice, and play. They make all kinds of money for schools. So much stress is placed on them to do their best and be the best. Someone comes along to give them a little assistance and people want the athlete punished. Sounds wrong to me.

posted by FilaDog at 11:20 AM on April 24

I'd have to look at the specifics of the rule to know for certain, but since reggie did not sign with either the agent or the marketing firm represented by the guy who actually owned the house, I think any penalty will be minor. I agree with Weedy that the family was a little too greedy for their own good.

posted by irunfromclones at 12:43 PM on April 24

Whenever we discuss whether or not an NCAA athlelte/program broke the rules, we always seem to devolve into a "these rules are unfair, the schools are getting rich on the backs of the athletes" shouting match. That is simply not the issue. Not here, anyway. Should the rules be changed? Maybe, maybe not, all depends on which viewpoint you look at it from. A free education is a powerful benefit of being athletically gifted. At the same time, some of the NCAA's regulations are Byzantine and ridiculous. Again, not the issue. Not here. The issue here is whether Reggie Bush, his family, and/or the University of Southern California violated NCAA regulations regarding college athletes receiving improper benefits. The tirade against regulations has its place, but I don't see this as that place. This is a discussion of rules that may or may not have been broken. That's the issue here, no matter how any of us feel about it.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 12:47 PM on April 24

since reggie did not sign with either the agent or the marketing firm represented by the guy who actually owned the house, I think any penalty will be minor $800,000 house. Nothing to see here, surely.

posted by yerfatma at 01:45 PM on April 24

Thank you TBH, I was thinking the same thing. As for the people who say this doesn't matter, the possible results are this are huge. Obviously it doesn't matter if Bush loses his college elligibility, but for a school to have to forfeit all the games he has played in is horrible for them. No matter how good USC is, their reputation will still take a hit. However, I do not think the above will end up happening. Not because USC is just to important to make an issue out of, because I think that there will be some punishment. What will most likely happen is a punishment more along the lines of Ohio States, sanctions and other crap that doesn't amount to much. If Bush turns out to have broken the rule, he will resemble Maurice Clarett in the fact that he will have been an inelligible player that had a huge impact in his team's success and championship run. Clarett has turned out to be a total nutcase, something I don't think will happen with Bush, but just as Ohio State's title was not taken away, neither will USC's. They will just get a slap on the hand, sanctions that won't have any impact on their success, and then they will move on. Is that right? I don't think so. Unfortunatly, the NCAA doesn't always seem to issue the right punishment to a major school in the spotlight.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 06:36 PM on April 24

TBH, exactly.

posted by Joey Michaels at 01:02 AM on April 25

well i'm thinking that either the bushes used these guys,or these guys approached his family hopin to persuade, how nice they are,what kind of life they are gonna enjoy after they become reggie's agent/reps..but reggie ain't stupid,seems to me,he took advantage of crooked people wanting to make a name or money for themselves,knowing that things gotta be hush-hush..and he goes an signs on with someone else..leaving the bad guys holding the bags of their own dirty laundry..heh heh heh...with empty pockets...very nice grift work,reggie..exploiting the greed of others...lol!!!

posted by ktown at 09:32 AM on April 25

Ktown- I agree completely. By the way, what is Michaels' connection to the school? Is there any? Or was he just hoping to sign Reggie at some point? However, that being said, Reggie and his family should not have accepted any such "gift" that could look at all suspicious. And isn't it irrelevant if he is eligible for the draft anyway? Ultimately, if there is no impact on his career this just paves the way for others.....

posted by emynes at 11:44 AM on April 26

This just keeps getting better Just two days ago, Reggie stated, "When this is all said and done, everybody will see at the end of the day that we've done nothing absolutely nothing wrong." However, just today transcripts of parole violation hearings for New Era Sports & Entertainment associate Lloyd Lake detail alleged links between the marketing agency and USC running back Reggie Bush during the 2005 college football season. Carlos alluded to a fallout between Bush and New Era, noting that there had even been potential litigation discussed by the agency for breach of an agreement on the part of Bush and his family.

posted by irunfromclones at 05:11 PM on April 26

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