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Jeff Schwartz Early Favorite To Represent Austin Rivers And Tyler Zeller

On Saturday, Duke and UNC met at Cameron Indoor Stadium to play in what ended up being a lopsided game with UNC earning an easy victory over the Blue Devils. While the game itself was not highly enjoyable to watch, it was fun to observe many future NBA players on the court at the same time. Two of those players are undoubtedly Austin Rivers and Tyler Zeller.

Rivers' father, Glenn Anton "Doc" Rivers is a former NBA player and the current head coach of the Boston Celtics. In his playing days, Doc Rivers was represented by Steve Kauffman of Kauffman Sports Management Group (KSMG). Doc Rivers still uses Steve's brother, Larry, to do his tax work. Even though Steve Kauffman has a solid relationship with Doc Rivers, the NBPA prohibits agents from representing both NBA coaches and NBA players (as discussed earlier today). Thus, Kauffman does not have the opportunity to represent Austin Rivers.

It seems as though the front runner to represent both Rivers and Zeller is Jeff Schwartz of Excel Sports Management. Schwartz likely has a good relationship with Doc Rivers based on Schwartz's representation of Paul Pierce (a member of Doc's Celtics team), but more importantly, Austin Rivers' brother, Jeramiah Rivers is an Excel Sports Management client.

Not only is Austin Rivers' brother an Excel client, but so is Tyler Zeller's elder brother, Luke. Both brothers have played overseas, and Excel's commission on the contracts is likely nothing to scoff at. However, it would be naive to think that Schwartz was not at least thinking about the prospect of signing Austin Rivers and Tyler Zeller when his company signed their older brothers. Jeremiah Rivers is currently playing for KK Mega Vizura in Serbia. Luke Zeller is currently playing for the Shiga Lakestars in Japan.

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.