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ABC EXPLORES UNDERGROUND AGENT ACTIVITY IN COLLEGE SPORTS
Published December 14, 1995
ABC's Armen Keteyian reported on the involvement of agents in college sports, profiling Jessie Martinez, a "runner" or "recruiter" for an agent. Martinez claims agent presence is prevalent at most top schools. Ketayian reported the NCAA recently suspended 18 athletes at 14 schools for accepting money, based on information from Martinez. Martinez told Keteyian the schools he had knowledge of or witnessed "the most illegal activity" were Tennessee, Miami, Florida, Texas A&M and USC. Keteyian reported "sources estimate" a "vast majority of first round draft picks in college football and college basketball are now on the take." USC Coach John Robinson, whose school took on agents and won in a lawsuit: "It's like a parent asking their son, 'How big is the drug problem out there?' You don't get a straight answer." USC suspended three starters earlier this year for taking cash and airline tickets from an agent, and is still investigating receiver Keyshawn Johnson. Agent Elliott Vallen, who claims to have loaned Johnson $1,200, says the athletes, not agents, should be accountable ("World News Tonight," ABC, 12/13).