It looks like the Oregon Ducks could be the next college football program to suffer the wrath of the NCAA.The potential violation focuses on a $25,000 payment Oregon made to Will Lyles’ Complete Scouting Services in February 2010.
Schools pay third-party services like Lyles’ for videos and other scouting material all the time.
But $25,000 is an exorbitant price in this business, and Lyles’ is the “mentor” of Lache Seastrunk, a running back who committed to Oregon less than a month before the payment was made.
So the NCAA began to investigate, and two primary questions emerged:
1. What exactly was that $25,000 for?
2. Did Lyles get paid to persuade Seastrunk to go to Oregon?
Yesterday we found out what Oregon (officially) got for their money, and it’s not good for Ducks fans.
The $25k “recruiting package” came in a form of a packet titled, “2010 National High School Evaluation Booklet.” That’s an expensive book to begin with, but it turns out that the packet is completely outdated and flimsy.
From Aaron Fentress at The Oregonian.
A national recruiting package purchased by Oregon in February 2010 that included the player profiles for 140 players with the heading “Player Profile 2011” is made up of virtually all 2009 high school graduates.
Further, although the service was billed as a “national package,” the vast majority of the players are from Texas. (…)
A search of all the players listed revealed that virtually all graduated from high school in 2009 with a few graduating in 2010 or 2008.
Right now, all we have are these simple facts: Oregon paid this guy $25,000, and they ended up with one useless booklet and one five-star running back.
Oregon has contended that they’ve done nothing wrong. But if the NCAA finds that Lyles funneled Seastrunk to Oregon for cash, it’s a rules violation and the Ducks will follow USC and Ohio State into the college football doghouse.
At this point there’s almost a sense of inevitably with NCAA investigations. Once investigators lock on to a school, they hack away at it until they find some semblance of corruption. As if corruption is the exclusive property of a few bad apples, and not an endemic part of big time college sports.
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