MANHATTAN (AP) — A jailed University of Miami booster who claims to have provided cars, cash, prostitutes and other impermissible benefits to 72 athletes told Yahoo! Sports two current Kansas State players were among the recipients.
Nevin Shapiro, a 42-year-old Miami resident who was sentenced in June to 20 years in federal prison for masterminding a $930 million Ponzi scheme, said he took Wichita residents Bryce and Arthur Brown, their parents and a spiritual adviser to lunch in March 2008. Shapiro also told the website he paid for hotel rooms for them during the weekend visit.
That adviser, Brian Butler, told The Wichita Eagle that he and the Browns didn’t know Shapiro was a Miami booster. Instead, they thought Shapiro was just a fan who helped players from out of state.
“In our case, he did invite us to lunch and we did go to lunch, and he did reserve some rooms for us, for myself and Mr. Brown senior,” Butler told the newspaper. “Those things, I can say that he did.”
A statement from Kansas State Wednesday afternoon read: “Kansas State University has been in communication with the NCAA. Regarding Arthur Brown and Bryce Brown, the NCAA staff has informed the institution that it has no concerns about their eligibility to compete at K-State.
“Kansas State does not comment on NCAA investigations at other institutions, and will have no further comment.”
At the time of the meeting, Arthur Brown was already enrolled at Miami, where he played linebacker for two years before transferring to Kansas State. His younger brother, Bryce, was a sophomore at Wichita East and considered one of the top high school running backs in the nation. He committed to Miami, but ended up at Tennessee, where he played one season before also transferring to Kansas State.
Both brothers had to sit out last season because of NCAA transfer rules.
“He wasn’t giving us money and trying to pay us or bring Bryce or Arthur there,” Butler said. “Arthur was already at the school. We didn’t get to see the yacht and the mansion. People are trying to make it seem like I’m some agent. He brought that up. I don’t know where he got that from.”
Shapiro pleaded guilty in June to securities fraud and money laundering. In addition to a 20-year prison term, he was ordered to pay more than $82 million in restitution. He told Yahoo! Sports that he gave money and gifts to players, paid for nightclub outings, sex parties and in one case an abortion for a woman impregnated by a player.