Throw Some D’s On That…Just Bought A Cadillac
Mike Conley Sr. quickly created MAC Management Group when he realized that he was in for a big payday. The former youth coach for Greg Oden, Daequan Cook, and Conley Jr. was uncomfortable going at starting an agency all on his lonesome and decided to team up with Bill Duffy of BDA Sports. All three of the aforementioned players were selected in the first round of the 2007 NBA Draft, making Conley Sr. a big name in the athlete representation industry.
All has been quiet for Conley Sr. since the draft. Oden got hurt and has not been able to play in a single game thus far and Kevin Durant has been making the headlines for being #1 in virtually every rookie category. With a few days before the year switches to 2008, the last thing Conley Sr. expected was for his name to be printed in numerous publications.
Who knew Conley Sr. was interested in expanding MAC Management Group outside of basketball? His success thus far would at least warrant him to play by the rules during recruiting, right?
News out of Arkansas is that Conley Sr. has been dipping into the football recruiting pool, going after Darren McFadden of the University of Arkansas. The speculation is based on the fact that McFadden was present while Conley Sr. just bought a Cadillac (throw some D’s on that..). D-Mac was seen driving the Escalade [Darren McFadden’s Availability In Question]. A simple, obvious statement by a few TV stations (including KTHV), sent the sports nation in a frenzy:
According to a complianace (nice spelling error) director from another University, if D-Mac received the car as a payment for future services, he is then a proferssional (nice spelling error #2) and no longer elligible (nice spelling error #3) for college football.
A spelling error here and there in a journalistic piece and I am not too worried about its credibility. Three in the same sentence, and I wonder who is put in charge of digging up this information.
KARK-TV added that the Escalade was put in the name of McFadden’s mother, but his mother claims that the SUV is in the name of D-Mac’s stepmom [Razorbacks report]. Conley Sr. immediately denied all accusations. But could there be some sort of validity to all of this? Conley Sr. did attend the University of Arkansas, after all, and may have felt invincible on the recruiting trail after having one of the most successful first year’s that any agent has ever seen.
Conley Sr. is quoted as saying,
I haven’t been in Fayetteville in a while, and I certainly haven’t been in any car dealerships with Darren McFadden. [Arkansas probes report as TV station issues apology].
But University of Arkansas compliance will look into the matter anyway. I think that this is an important story for one reason. Whether or not Conley Sr. was actually involved in any way with the purchase or had any communication with D-Mac, this should be a clear message that times are changing and the regulation of sports agents is getting more stringent. Using myself as an example, I filed my registration papers in the state of Florida in July 2007. At that time, I paid approximately $1,300 in order to be considered and filed all my paperwork. The state lost my fingerprint card and another sheet (what else can you expect from bureaucracy?) and I had to resubmit both forms again in October. To this date, my file is still in progress. Why? Because the fingerprint card had to be sent to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and then onto the FBI for background checks, which usually takes more than 90 days. A cosmetologist application would take 6 days maximum to clear. If you think Florida takes registration seriously, Arkansas is the Inquisition. If you are going to try recruiting clients at the University of Arkansas, I suggest reading these two pieces: Questions & Answers Related to Agents and University of Arkansas Agent Policy
It looks like Conley Sr. had little to no involvement in the purchase of the SUV and that the TV station got the whole thing wrong. KARK-TV has already issued a public apology to Conley Sr. and apologized to D-Mac for reporting false facts. The station should be free from a libel suit in the same way that the MLB should be protected in the Clemens case.
I still think it’s a little odd that anyone would randomly include Conley Sr.’s name in this report. Even if he is an Arkansas alum, you have to really have a creative mind to throw his name into a story with Darren McFadden driving a new Escalade. I am not pointing fingers or saying that Conley Sr. bought the car for the McFadden’s, I am merely saying that he was probably at least in the wrong place at the wrong time.