Saturday, September 4, 2010

UNC's Austin subpoenaed

UNC defensive tackle Marvin Austin has been subpoenaed in North Carolina Secretary of State Elaine Marshall's investigation of possible violations of the state's Uniform Athlete Agent Act, two sources with knowledge of the subpoena told the News & Observer on Friday.

The Associated Press also reported that Austin has been subpoenaed.

Austin is one of 13 players who are being held out of tonight's season opener with LSU in Atlanta as a result of the NCAA's investigation of the UNC program. Part of that investigation includes possible impermissible benefits players may have received from agents.

In the summer of 2009, Austin and then-UNC teammate Cam Thomas traveled to California to train at Proactive Sports Performance. Thomas said another former UNC teammate who was then with the San Francisco 49ers, Kentwan Balmer, paid for the trip.

That payment could be construed by the NCAA as an impermissible benefit that might have made Austin and Thomas ineligible for the 2009 season and could force UNC to vacate its records from that season.

Balmer's agent is Gary Wichard, who once employed current UNC assistant coach John Blake as vice president of his agency, Pro Tect Sports Management. Blake coached Balmer, Thomas and Austin on the UNC defensive line.

North Carolina's Uniform Athlete Agent Act requires agents to register with the state and prevents them from giving or promising anything of value to players the agents are trying to recruit.

Ken Tysiac


Anonymous said...

Marvelous Marvin. Guy had a huge red flag from the moment he stepped foot on campus. The hillarity of it all is the UNC Media Guide with Marvin and Little on the cover with "Raising the Bar" as the title.

Ironic to say the least.

tom P said...

So let me get this straight. Concerning the trip to California, the 2 scenarios are:

a.) the agent, Wichard, told Balmer to invite his 2 former teammates to SoCal to work out and he'd foot the bill if Balmer could talk to them about signing him(Wichard) when they went pro.

b.) Balmer invited his 2 friends from college out to see his new place in California (now that he's a millionaire) and they worked out while there.

Are those the 2 scenarios we are looking at? Because while I certainly see why scenario A would violate NCAA rules, I don't see a problem with B. My friend from school just got a fancy new job and bought us all drinks one night because he's rolling in the dough now. Same thing as far as I'm concerned.