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Sick Story For The Agents Who Rep Scott Sicko

The only joke I will make about this story is based on the player’s last name – It really makes me sick-o.

Unless you work at Creative Artists Agency, Maximum Sports, BEST, Athletes First, Rosenhaus Sports, or Priority Sports (I am probably missing a few at this level), not a day goes by that you are stressed less than the average Jewish mother.  Your career often depends on the results of a couple days (this year, three days), when the NFL Draft comes around and you hope to see your players selected in one of the seven rounds.  But there is also hope that your players will be signed by teams after the draft.  After all, you have forged relationships with the best athletic trainers, paid for your clients’ training, food, apartment, and possibly some other things (in football, a $100,000 car is not unheard of).  You hopefully would not have spent money on guys who had absolutely no chance of being an undrafted free agent pick-up.

The seven rounds go by and at least one of your clients never shows up on ESPN and the NFL Network.  You have been working the phones nonstop for the past few days, though, and teams are now interested in signing your player after they used up all of their draft picks.  More specifically, America’s Team, the Dallas Cowboys, are ready to add him to their roster as soon as he signs on the dotted line.  But then, after years of playing a sport that he supposedly loved, months of training on your dime, eating the food you paid for, and taking up minute after minute of your valuable time, he gets cold feet.

No more hypothetical – this actually happened this weekend.  And unfortunately, it happened to an agent that I am friends with.  The player’s name is Scott Sicko (revert to my joke at the beginning of this post, if you would like), a former tight-end with the New Hampshire Wildcats, who had 160 receptions for 2,014 yards and 22 touchdowns in his collegiate career.  The Jaguars, Jets, and Cowboys were interested in Sicko after the seven rounds had gone by, but my that point, Sicko was no longer interested in playing professional football.

Sicko told his agent that if he was not going to be drafted, he was not going to play.  That’s usually something you want to write on a huge poster board in red writing and hand it over to prospective agents well in advance of the draft.  Unfortunately for his team of advisors, they found out as the draft was winding down.

“If I were to be drafted I would have had more confidence of a much longer career in the NFL,” Sicko said. “I have to look at my life and decide what will make me the happiest. And the thing that will make me the happiest now and in the longrun is to pursue my education.”

I have absolutely no problem with that statement.  What I do have a problem with is that his decision, when it was made, affects others just as much (if not more) than it affects himself.  The football agency world is disgusting.  With agents undercutting each other when the commission is capped at 3%, people are stealing clients from each other, and the cost to compete (paying for athletes’ expenses) being so high, this type of story can really set an agent back.  But perhaps the football agent industry is to blame for all of this.  As stated, agents will do practically anything to get a client (because it is such a competitive landscape).  Football players, even ones with no shot of being drafted, feel entitled.  Why have the decency to warn your agent ahead of time that if you don’t get drafted, you probably will hang up the cleats?

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.

12 replies on “Sick Story For The Agents Who Rep Scott Sicko”

This just comes to show that the madness needs to stop. The problem does not lie with the athlete deciding to pursue his education, but rather with the fact that the football agent world is so sick-o.

It is up to NFL agents to put a stop to this madness and let all other sports agent take note of this situation, be alarmed, and be proactive.

I’m glad you commented on this because i’ve always had this question. When agents try to give benefits to various players, do they simply pay for everything out of their own pocket and then give these things to the player? And if so does this mean it is necessary to have a good amount of money in the bank before you try to enter the industry?

The money is coming out of somebody’s pocket, so unless the agency is financed by some outside entity (a whole different topic of conversation), it is usually coming straight out of the agent’s/agency’s pocket. It would seem pretty necessary to have nice cash reserves on hand.

Whats the big deal? Kid doesnt want to play anymore. Good for him! Move on with your life.
The Cowboys really? Good luck making the squad with Martellus Bennett, Jason Witten and John Philllips. If I were his agents, I would be glad he made the decision now and not waste their time with a guy who’s heart is really not in it. Plus, the agency has gotten more pub than they would have ever gotten had been drafted in the 7th round and been cut in mid August.

They did get more publicity but not sure if that is equal to the amount of time and money they lost on this guy. They could have been helping out a different player and putting their efforts towards someone who would actually be taking advantage of their help and making money for them as well.

First, your assuming that A. they had could have gotten other players. B. they turned them down because they had a possible low round draft pick.

I think the agents knew there was no guarantee he would make the team. I am sure they were prepared for him not making a team and but were willingly to take a gamble on the kid.

Not that they turned someone down or that they definitely could have gotten someone but that they could have been TRYING to get a different player. Sure he’s a low round pick but teams were calling and making offers for the guy. Obviously he was no lock but they probably thought he’d at least try if he got the chance. Their time was wasted because they got the guy an opportunity to play in the NFL which he made them believe was what he wanted to do.

why didn’t sicko’s agent discuss the possibility of not being drafted with him? sicko was not invited to the senior bowl or the nfl combine, and had only one nfl scout at his pro day. if his agent was really doing his job, he would’ve detailed each possible and probable scenario with his client rather then filling with with false hope and delusions of grandeur.

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