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TRIBUNE EXAMINES COLLEGE SPORTS' PROBLEM WITH AGENTS
Published August 30, 1995
In a three-part series, the CHICAGO TRIBUNE's Andrew Gottesman analyzed the "problematic relationship between professional sports agents and college athletes." In Part I, Gottesman notes the harassment experienced by Illinois LB Simeon Rice, who reports having agents offer him everything from $100 in a sack to a $46,000 truck. Illinois coach Lou Tepper adds that agents do not limit their recruiting to players like Rice, projected as a high NFL draft pick. Tepper said he caught an agent talking to a third-string senior last year (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 8/27). In Part II, Gottesman reports on the deluge of agents competing for a limited number of pro athletes. The high number of agents -- estimated by some at 3,000 -- competing with a limited number of players is "the crux of a major problem in college sports." Gottesman notes that most agents are not making huge amounts of money, as ten -- Tom Condon, Brad Blank, Ralph Cindrich, Frank Bauer, Jim Steiner, Marvin Demoff, Drew Rosenhaus, Tony Agnone, Jordon Woy and Leigh Steinberg -- represent just under 25% of NFL players (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 8/28). The final part examined the difficulty of enforcing NCAA statutes and local laws prohibiting agents from giving college players money or goods. Although 24 states have laws on the books regulating agents activities, only one agent has ever been imprisoned. Gottesman notes that many universities are setting up advisory panels to help athletes stay within the rules (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 8/29).