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SEC, Auburn release statement on HBO report

SEC

Ahead of what promises to be a rather “enlightening” episode of HBO’s Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel, the SEC has issued a statement kinda, sorta addressing the allegations that will be levied by four former Auburn football players.

“We are aware of some of the information to be aired during this evening’s HBO Real Sports,” the statement from the conference read. “Representatives from Auburn University, representatives from LSU and the SEC office have communicated with the NCAA Enforcement Staff. The involved institutions and the NCAA staff will pursue the allegations in a timely manner.”

So, apparently and as expected, the end of the program tonight likely won’t be the last time we hear of this issue.

Several members of the media obtained an advanced copy of the hour-long program ahead of its airing Wednesday night, and published at least partial transcripts of what on the surface appears to be rather explosive and damning allegations.

The four ex-Auburn players — Stanley McClover, Troy ReddickChaz Ramsey and Raven Gray — will all claim to one degree or another that they received “financial assistance” from alumni/boosters of the AU football program during their recruitment and, in a couple of the players’ cases, after they had signed with the Tigers.  At least one of the players also alleges that he received cash on recruiting trips to LSU and Michigan State, and received cash and “sexual favors” on a trip to Ohio State.

Since the details of the allegations made in the program surfaced Tuesday, the claims of the former players have been attacked by numerous individuals connected to the football program.

The program tonight is a departure “from its traditional format” and is “dedicated to the state of college sports in America”, although it appears Auburn, for better or worse, will be the central figure in the cable offering.

UPDATED 7:53 p.m. ET: Shortly after the SEC issued their statement regarding tonight’s Real Sports episode, the “stars” of the show have released their own responses to the yet-to-be-aired program.

“We are aware that four former football players have made allegations against Auburn,” athletic director Jay Jacobs said. “While HBO confirmed to us they have no proof that any of these claims are true, we contacted both the NCAA and Southeastern Conference as soon as these allegations surfaced. We have engaged outside counsel to investigate this matter and will spare no resources to find the truth.”

“As a university president, there are several things you want from the athletics department,” Auburn President Jay Gogue said. “One of them is playing by the rules, and Jay Jacobs and the athletics department are committed to that priority. They will investigate these allegations thoroughly and completely.

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16 Responses to “SEC, Auburn release statement on HBO report”
  1. Slim Charles says: Mar 30, 2011 8:06 PM

    I wonder how many schools will get caught up in investigations before the NCAA takes a long look at itself

  2. southernpatriots says: Mar 30, 2011 9:36 PM

    @Slim Charles: Good observation. The NCAA needs more accountability for itself and clearer rules that are without ambiguity. Maybe even encourage the major football universities toward a playoff as all its other football divisions have currently.

  3. overratedgators says: Mar 30, 2011 9:37 PM

    No comment from Ohio State? Guess they’ve got bigger concerns to focus on at the moment…

  4. gatorprof says: Mar 30, 2011 9:49 PM

    I smell a defamation suit coming up if these kids cannot back up their accusations or if they can be proven to be incorrect.

    These athletic programs have deep pockets and there is money on the line, so when they state, “We have engaged outside counsel to investigate this matter and will spare no resources to find the truth.”, their will be blood.

  5. WingT says: Mar 30, 2011 9:49 PM

    Can you imagine what the repercussions would be if every recruit from last years class came forward and reported receiving special benefits during a recruiting visit?

  6. burntorangehorn says: Mar 30, 2011 10:02 PM

    Apparently Mack Brown didn’t rub off on Gene Chizik.

  7. gatiger says: Mar 30, 2011 10:32 PM

    burntorangehorn says:
    Mar 30, 2011 10:02 PM
    Apparently Mack Brown didn’t rub off on Gene Chizik.

    Don’t know what that means, but these allegations took place under Tuberville. Maybe Mack should rub Tommy.

    Seriously though, people with too much money who think rules don’t apply to them ruin it for the rest of us……if its true.

  8. danthemanhsv says: Mar 30, 2011 11:17 PM

    Funny. No one commented on how red the eyes were on all interviewed. I recorded it and couldn’t get past it. They sure were not upset or crying. So why red eyes? I say drug test them. amazing how it’s all players who didn’t make make an inpact in the NFL. Where is Carnel Williams, Ronnie Brown, Bo Jackson, Jason Cambell, Heath Evans? Top players didn’t get paid? Just these has beens? Why can’t the guy find a job? Says he didn’t get an education? You went to college. That’s your issue. Lay off the “red eyes” and study.

  9. danthemanhsv says: Mar 30, 2011 11:23 PM

    Tampa, Fla.–The last five months have been an open season on the Auburn Tigers and Coach Gene Chizik’s program from both the national media and faceless bloggers throughout the country. Now the latest shot is one that could come from HBO as several outlets are reporting that former Tiger Stanley McClover could be making claims of receiving extra benefits while on the Plains.
    McClover wasn’t the only Auburn player contacted by the network though as other Tigers were called out of the blue including wide receiver Jeris McIntyre (1999-2003). Currently a co-owner along with his father Secdrick McIntyre of a utility company in the Tampa area who also is a coach of a junior high football team in the Town and Country area, the second generation Auburn player said he was surprised to get a phone call asking about college football.

    “I didn’t really have any idea,” McIntyre said of getting a call from HBO. “In this day and age you have all these media outlets and a guy hit me up saying he was doing a story on big time college football. I went to Auburn and we just won the national championship so I decided to go ahead and do it. I gave him my number and he called me.

    “He started out by asking me questions about Auburn,” McIntyre added. “I thought I was just doing an interview. He asked me if I thought players should be paid. I was trying to answer the question as far as legally and through the university how it would be nice because of all the money that the football program brings in. I think it makes some sense.

    “Then he asked me if players get paid under the table at Auburn? I told him ‘no way.’ We were pretty much struggling, maybe not everybody was struggling but nobody was living the life. I told him absolutely not. He just got off the subject and talked about college football itself and the Cam Newton situation and things like that. I told him Cam Newton was a great player, but I don’t know anything about the situation because I was there in 2003.”

    The questions came as somewhat of a surprise to McIntyre. Like most everyone else he’s seen his school get slung through the mud this season by fans and even some supposed credible journalists, but to get that question directed at him was something he didn’t expect.

    “After the Cam Newton situation people might have their jokes about players getting paid, but for a real media outlet to try to do something like that out of the blue was kind of shocking,” McIntyre said. “Nobody has ever directly asked if me or anybody else got paid while we were at Auburn. It was kind of shocking for a stranger just to ask that.”

    McIntyre said he’s spoken with several former teammates who got a phone call from HBO and he made it a point to call several guys as well to get their take on the situation. Just like him they said they never saw anything underhanded while on the Plains.

    “A couple of teammates said they got called and asked the same questions as well,” McIntyre said. “Saying ‘off the record this and off the record that.’ He got the same answers that at Auburn it doesn’t go down like that. From what I know and what I have seen it doesn’t go down like that at Auburn.”

    One of the top recruits in the country and the subject of a heated recruiting battle between Auburn, Tennessee and Alabama, Carnell Williams would be the perfect candidate for something like that to occur seeing all the hype surrounding him. McIntyre said the current Tampa Bay Buc sees things just like him when they talked about things very recently.

    “Me and Cadillac (Carnell Williams) were talking yesterday and with him being one of the top players in the country and the top player in the state of Alabama that’s definitely not the case at Auburn,” McIntyre said of players getting paid. “You look at the players like Carlos Rogers having his old Honda Accord half spray painted and Cadillac having his old Camaro. It’s not just cars but if you’re getting paid like than then everybody is not going to be driving around in a junky vehicle and not really having any money to do what they want to do.

    “If you’re getting paid it’s going to be obvious. From my time at Auburn and through now with the guys there the program speaks for itself. If you go to a Tiger Walk and to a game that’s going to be enough said. Nine times out of 10 if you’re on campus for a game then you’re going to have Auburn in your top two or three. The university speaks for itself. All that pay for play crap, it doesn’t go down like that at Auburn University.”

    Same old crap we have been hearing all year!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  10. mrcowpatty says: Mar 31, 2011 1:14 AM

    Did you ever notice that if you hold up the log of the SEC to a mirror it says DEZ?

  11. ihateannouncers says: Mar 31, 2011 2:03 AM

    I assume that this type of activity probably goes on at most major football and basketball programs to some extent. To point fingers at The OSU and Auburn is narrow minded. There are alot of greedy boosters / alumni from alot of schools. I expect more stories to surface as HBO digs ( pays ) for more information from players who have fallen on hard times.

  12. gamustangdude says: Mar 31, 2011 6:23 AM

    @mrcowpatty

    No, if I hold up the logo to the SEC to the mirror it says, “CES”

    Not sure what kind of mirror you have but mine doesn’t show me stuff that isn’t there. Nor does it makes up letters for some lame ass joke. Now I’m pretty sure you’ll see “Dez” if you hold up a big 12 logo or Oklahoma State logo, given that’s where Dez Bryant went to school.

  13. jimr10 says: Mar 31, 2011 8:23 AM

    Consider the source of the story.

  14. Deb says: Mar 31, 2011 12:56 PM

    I hate Auburn and absolutely believe dirty deals went on where Newton was concerned. But I don’t like what I’m hearing about the way HBO pursued this story. To me the far bigger issues in this piece are the two real stories no one is addressing:

    1. The total exploitation of college athletes.

    2. The understaffing of the NCAA, and as RichRod said, their focus on issuing parking tickets while people around them are jacking cars.

  15. mrcowpatty says: Apr 2, 2011 1:08 AM

    gamustangdude,

    You actually held the logo up to a mirror? Your easy.

  16. gamustangdude says: Apr 4, 2011 12:06 PM

    @mrcowpatty

    You actually held the logo up to a mirror? Your easy.

    When learning to read in grade school I was taught to read left to right. However even though I’m breaking education norms, I can read right to left. That being said when I see “S E C”, it’s very easy for most to write, and then therefore read in reverse, i.e. “C E S”

    BTW your name means cow sh*t.

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