On September 12, 2012, college football writer Pat Forde of Yahoo! Sports drafted an article concerning the recent alleged NCAA rules-violations at Mississippi State University (MSU). Specifically, Forde discussed an interview Yahoo! Sports conducted with Nashville-based seven-on-seven coach Byron De’Vinner regarding now disassociated MSU booster Robert Denton Herring. Herring allegedly broke NCAA extra benefits regulations in an effort to help MSU land then-prospective student-athlete Will Redmond.
De’Vinner told Yahoo! Sports Redmond, who was a four-star recruit according to Rivals.com and ultimately signed with MSU, received money from Herring during a visit to the institution. De’Vinner also stated Herring has provided extra benefits to five or six additional MSU student-athletes. Under NCAA Bylaw 16.02.3 an extra benefit includes a representative of an institution’s athletics interests providing a current or prospective student-athlete any benefit not expressly authorized by NCAA legislation, including cash payments.
The full article can be found here.
In light of this story, the Michael L. Buckner Law Firm recommends institutions athletics compliance offices implement a high-profile student-athlete and third party due-diligence program at their institution. This program should include, at a minimum, components that can be found here.