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NFL Agents Implicated In Yahoo! Report Concerning Benefits To SEC Players

Arizona Cardinals safety Tyrann Mathieu (32) looks on during training camp at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports
One agent says that former LSU safety Tyrann Mathieu was on Luther Davis’ list of “solid relationships.” Photo Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

Three football agents had their names listed front-and-center as part of a new investigative report published by the team of Charles Robinson and Rand Getlin at Yahoo! Sports.  Those agents are Andy Simms of PlayersRep Sports Management, Peter Schaffer of Authentic Athletix and John Phillips, who was formerly the owner of Breakthrough Sports Agency (BTSA), but now focuses on his personal injury legal practice.

The article titled, Ties between former Alabama player and agents documented by text messages, says that the aforementioned agents (along with a financial adviser) had provided money to former Alabama defensive end Luther Davis and that Davis was providing benefits to Southeastern Conference (SEC) football players at the same time.  Those players were Alabama offensive tackle D.J. Fluker, Tennessee defensive lineman Maurice Couch, Tennessee QB Tyler Bray, Mississippi State wide receiver Chad Bumphis, Mississippi State defensive end Fletcher Cox and possibly Alabama safety Mark Barron.

Simms and Schaffer told Yahoo! Sports that they had no knowledge and never consented to Davis providing any such benefits to others.  Phillips declined to respond to the Yahoo! investigative reporters.  Only one of the three agents have responded to Sports Agent Blog’s further inquiry into the matter.

“Charles [Robinson] was very irresponsible and possibly libelous in his article and was a coward not returning my call yesterday,” said John Phillips to Sports Agent Blog.  “There was a lot of context left out.”

Why were Simms, Schaffer and Phillips purportedly shifting money to Davis?  According to the Yahoo! Sports article,

When contacted by Yahoo Sports, Simms, Schaffer, Phillips and Rowan each independently said Davis had expressed a desire to be a manager or “concierge” for NFL players, and had offered to put them in touch with potential NFL draft picks.

That desire to be a manager for NFL players was confirmed by another agent speaking to Sports Agent Blog on condition of anonymity.  And according to that agent, there were many in the agent community who wanted Davis to work exclusively with them in the recruitment of athlete clients.  Davis was offering a “full concierge service” that apparently included a laundry list of items.  Additionally, he wanted a commission from agents for handling all managerial and concierge services.

Further, Sports Agent Blog was told that while Davis may have only provided benefits to a select number of SEC players, he was holding himself out to agents as having “solid relationships” with many others, including LSU cornerback Tyrann Mathieu, Tennessee wide receiver Justin Hunter and Arkansas wide receiver Ronnie Wingo Jr.

By Darren Heitner

Darren Heitner created Sports Agent Blog as a New Year's Resolution on December 31, 2005. Originally titled, "I Want To Be A Sports Agent," the website was founded with the intention of causing Heitner to learn more about the profession that he wanted to join, meet reputable individuals in the space and force himself to stay on top of the latest news and trends.

Heitner now runs Heitner Legal, P.L.L.C., which is a law firm with many practice areas, including sports law and contract law. Heitner has represented numerous athletes and sports agents as legal counsel. He has also served as an Adjunct Professor at Indiana University Bloomington from 2011-2014, where he created and taught a course titled, Sport Agency Management, which included subjects ranging from NCAA regulations to athlete agent certification and the rules governing the profession. Heitner serves as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Florida Levin College of Law, where he teaches a Sports Law class that includes case law surrounding athlete agents and the NCAA rules.

One reply on “NFL Agents Implicated In Yahoo! Report Concerning Benefits To SEC Players”

Right. That knucklehead is going to sue, and give subpoena power to Charles Robinson? When pigs fly…

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