Oct 022014
 

From Youtube.com Posted by Ward Johnson.

“Whatcha gonna do, brother, when the Dak Attack and the Bulldog nation runs wild on you? HAIL STATE!”

 

Sep 112013
 

From Sports.Yahoo.com by Rand Getlin and Charles Robinson.

Five Southeastern Conference football stars violated NCAA rules by receiving extra benefits prior to completing their collegiate careers, a Yahoo Sports investigation has found. The benefits – which in some cases came from multiple individuals – were conveyed to University of Alabama offensive tackle D.J. Fluker, University of Tennessee quarterback Tyler Bray, Tennessee defensive end Maurice Couch, Mississippi State University defensive tackle Fletcher Cox and Mississippi State wideout Chad Bumphis.

Fluker, Bray and Cox are all currently on NFL rosters. Bumphis was recently released by the Miami Dolphins. Couch is a senior starter for the Volunteers this season.

The identities of these players were revealed in a web of financial and text message records belonging to former Crimson Tide defensive end Luther Davis. The records were turned over to Yahoo Sports by a source with ties to the NFL agent community who alleged that Davis was acting as an intermediary between several high-profile college football stars and multiple NFL agents and financial advisers.

Davis declined to comment for this story. However, Yahoo Sports was able to authenticate text message records, Western Union fund transfers, banking statements, flight receipts and other financial material linking both Davis and the five college football players. Yahoo Sports also found that three NFL agents and three financial advisers engaged Davis in transactions totaling $45,550. The three agents were Andy Simms, Peter Schaffer and John Phillips. The financial advisers were Jason Jernigan, Mike Rowan and Hodge Brahmbhatt.

Simms, Schaffer, Phillips and Rowan each confirmed giving money to Davis – but each said they had no knowledge of, and did not instruct Davis to provide benefits to players. Jernigan declined comment. Brahmbhatt declined comment through his attorney. Another agent who was listed on a travel itinerary in Davis’ records, Isaac Conner, said Davis was a point of contact to reach multiple SEC players but denied any knowledge of Davis’ financial dealings.

A defensive end for the Crimson Tide from 2007-10, Davis acted as a “concierge” between budding NFL draft picks, agents and financial advisers following his college career, five sources told Yahoo Sports. Davis signed with the Buffalo Bills as an undrafted free agent in 2011, but has not been on an NFL roster since being released in training camp prior to that season.

All told, the records show agents and financial advisers moved at least $45,550 to Davis between September 2011 and December 2012. During that same timeframe, records also show at least $12,700 in cash, airfare, living expenses or other receipts moving from Davis to the five players. In addition to that amount, Yahoo Sports also obtained a line-item invoice of 49 transactions from February 2013 that Davis emailed to Fluker’s onetime financial adviser Hodge Brahmbhatt. Within the email, Davis listed $33,755 in expenditures under the subject line “D.J. Fluker Invoice.”

If proven by the NCAA, the transactions could violate Bylaw 12.3.1.2, which prohibits athletes from receiving benefits from agents or marketing representatives. Like the highly publicized NCAA case against the University of Southern California and Reggie Bush, a violation of that bylaw could retroactively nullify a portion of each player’s eligibility, including Fluker, who was an All-American at offensive tackle during Alabama’s 2012 national championship season. It could also raise additional issues for Tennessee and Mississippi State, which are both currently on probation until the summer of 2015 for previous rules violations in their respective football programs.

“Mississippi State constantly educates our student athletes about agent related issues,” the school told Yahoo Sports in a statement. “We’ve also worked closely with the Mississippi Secretary of State’s office in recent years to strengthen the Mississippi Uniform Agent Act. As always, we will do our due diligence to evaluate any potential concerns.”

Tennessee officials declined comment. Alabama and NCAA officials were contacted Wednesday morning and had no immediate comment.

Among the documents linking the players to extra benefits:

Alabama offensive tackle D.J. Fluker

Yahoo Sports authenticated multiple transactions tying Fluker to Davis and others, including cash transfers, hotel stays, furniture, airline flights and other expenses. The records also included a pair of invoices – one submitted to Davis by the mother of an Alabama teammate for monies that had been spent on Fluker’s mother, Annice; another sent from Davis to Fluker’s onetime financial adviser Hodge Brahmbhatt.

Brahmbhatt declined to comment through his attorney.

Alabama offensive tackle D.J. Fluker started all 14 games last season. (Getty Images)

As a junior, Fluker started all 14 games at right tackle for the Crimson Tide during the 2012 national championship season. After being tabbed as an All-American by multiple media outlets, he bypassed his senior season and declared for the NFL draft. The San Diego Chargers selected him with the No. 11 pick in April’s draft.

 Fluker and his mother Annice declined comment through his representatives.

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