George Dohrmann of Sports Illustrated has one of the most important sports stories of the year in this upcoming week’s issue.
In the cover story, Dohrmann profiles former NFL agent Josh Luchs, who goes into great detail on providing dozens of college football players with thousands of dollars, free trips and meals. Such notable players named in the article were New Orleans Saints tight end Jeremy Shockey, New York Jets wide receiver Santoio Holmes and former Baltimore Ravens offensive tackle Jonathan Ogden.
It’s hard not to get sucked into this story after reading the opening paragraph:
I will never forget the first time I paid a player.
There are moments you will always remember, like your first kiss or your first home run or the day you met your wife. For me, the first time I broke an NCAA rule to try to land a client is just as indelible.
It was before the 1990 football season, and I flew from Los Angeles to Denver and drove to the University of Colorado to try to meet with Kanavis McGhee. He was a big, pass-rushing linebacker who was expected to be a high pick in the 1991 NFL draft. I was 20 years old — the youngest agent ever certified by the NFL Players Association — and had less than a year’s experience, but for whatever reason I convinced myself that I had a shot with him.
That sound you just heard was the NCAA banging their head on the table as they try brace from the fallout of what could be the first of many agents stepping forward to discuss the dirty side of the industry.