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Federal documents tie some of the biggest programs in college basketball to activity that appears to violate NCAA rules: Report

Key Points
  • A former NBA agent allegedly facilitated cash advances to college basketball players, according to Yahoo Sports report Friday.
  • Players at more than 20 Division 1 basketball programs received possibly improper benefits, the report says.
  • The documents reviewed in the report are part of an ongoing federal investigation into college basketball, which saw the FBI arrest 10 people on Sept. 26.
Players during an NCAA March Madness basketball game.
Getty Images

Former NBA agent Andy Miller, as well as his former coworker Christian Dawkins and his agency ASM Sports, allegedly facilitated cash advances to ineligible college basketball players, as well as reimbursed entertainment and travel to student athletes and their families, according to a Yahoo Sports report Friday.

Documents from the federal investigation into NCAA basketball reviewed by Yahoo Sports show players at least 20 Division I basketball programs received possibly improper benefits, including Duke, North Carolina, Texas, Kentucky, Michigan State, USC and Alabama.

"These allegations, if true, point to systematic failures that must be fixed and fixed now if we want college sports in America," NCAA President Market Emmert said in a statement.

The documents show cash flowed to more than 25 players, an alleged violation of amateurism rules — payments ranging from meals to tens of thousands of dollars. Several are current collegiate players, such as Miles Bridges at Michigan State, Collin Sexton at Alabama, and Wendell Carter at Duke.

Others who received benefits now play professionally in the NBA: Markelle Fultz — the first pick in the 2017 draft — for the Philadelphia 76ers, Josh Jackson for the Phoenix Suns, Isaiah Whitehead for the Brooklyn Nets, Dennis Smith Jr. for the Dallas Mavericks and Kyle Kuzma for the Los Angeles Lakers. According to a photograph of an ASM document, current NBA players Kyle Lowry and Nerlens Noel also received thousands in loan payments.

The vast number of players and schools represent an unprecedented challenge for the NCAA to enforce compliance reforms or punishments. The report notes that, as the federal criminal investigation is ongoing, the NCAA may not be able to interview people or review documents associated with the case.

The FBI arrested 10 people on Sept. 26 as a part of the probe, including four NCAA basketball coaches and an Adidas manager, in a bribery investigation involving recruitment efforts. The probe has revealed numerous instances of bribes paid to assistant and associate basketball coaches to exert influence over student athletes, according to documents filed Monday in U.S. District Court in Manhattan.

Emmert's full statement in response:

"These allegations, if true, point to systematic failures that must be fixed and fixed now if we want college sports in America. Simply put, people who engage in this kind of behavior have no place in college sports. They are an affront to all those who play by the rules. Following the Southern District of New York's indictments last year, the NCAA Board of Governors and I formed the independent Commission on College Basketball, chaired by Condoleezza Rice, to provide recommendations on how to clean up the sport. With these latest allegations, it's clear this work is more important now than ever. The Board and I are completely committed to making transformational changes to the game and ensuring all involved in college basketball do so with integrity. We also will continue to cooperate with the efforts of federal prosecutors to identify and punish the unscrupulous parties seeking to exploit the system through criminal acts."

Read the full Yahoo Sports report here.