Posted August 07, 2013

South Carolina says Jadeveon Clowney autographs not an NCAA violation

Jadeveon Clowney, Johnny Manziel, NCAA, South Carolina Gamecocks
South Carolina's Jadeveon Clowney

Despite morning murmurs, Jadeveon Clowney (right) will continue smiling at practice. (The State/Getty Images)

By Zac Ellis

While Texas A&M’s Johnny Manziel finds himself in the thick of an NCAA investigation into whether he accepted money for autographs, South Carolina has pumped the brakes on a similar scandal sprouting up around star defensive end Jadeveon Clowney.

After SB Nation reported early Wednesday that it had discovered a large number of Clowney-signed items on eBay, South Carolina’s compliance office told GoGamecocks.com that the school had looked into the signatures and determined that no NCAA violations occurred.

“We have investigated things that have been on eBay with him and student-athletes before,” associate athletics director Chris Rogers said. “In the situations I can say we looked into, there was no further for us to go, and we determined there was no violation.”

Clowney and Manziel are hardly the only players with signed items on eBay. Clemson quarterback Tajh Boyd and wide receiver Sammy Watkins, Georgia quarterback Aaron Murray and Alabama quarterback AJ McCarron are just a few of the star players who have signed items that appear on eBay complete with certificates of authenticity. But searching Clowney’s name turns up a whopping 266 signed items for sale, according to SB Nation’s report.

Players are allowed to sign autographs, but an NCAA violation would occur if Clowney, Manziel or any other current student athlete accepted money for an autograph. NCAA Bylaw 12.5.2.1 prevents a student athlete from accepting money for promoting or advertising the commercial sale of a product or service.

Reports this week have linked Manziel, last season’s Heisman Trophy winner, to a handful of autograph brokers who claim to have paid the Texas A&M star for his signatures. On Tuesday, an ESPN.com report cited two East Coast brokers who claimed to have paid Manziel $7,500 for his signature on approximately 300 mini and full-sized football helmets in January. The brokers recorded video of Manziel signing the items on a bed in a hotel room, and though the video does not show Manziel accepting money, Manziel can reportedly be heard telling the brokers that he would refuse to deal with them in the future if they told anyone about the dealings.

32 comments
FrankNStein
FrankNStein

Well, er-uh, say-uh, lookie heah now, he ain't did nuthin'.

xerxes
xerxes

What if he signed the gloves, helmet, etc  for family and friends? Did So. Car. check out who profited from his signature? See Reggie Bush.

Cool
Cool

Amazing how all these schools have investigated these things themselves and found nothing!  Imagine that?  lol

CharlesOwen
CharlesOwen

So you video tape someone signing autographs for you.  Sounds like a shakedown and his refusal to sign more items that have led to this revelation.  "Oh, look...we are honest brokers.  We videotaped these transactions by hidden camera for their historical content and not as a means of blackmailing anyone later."  It's time the NCAA gets its collective head out of it's "A<>A" and realize universities and television are making millions and millions of dollars off these young mean and they are supposed to just say' "Thank you...may I have another."  

Sean D
Sean D

The brokers need to be fined heavily for their roles in trying to profit off this.

MarcBrauer
MarcBrauer

Well as long as his own school says there's no violation, there must be no violation...nothing to see here NCAA...these aren't the droids you're looking for (insert hand wave).

jhsweeney
jhsweeney

They didn't say he never took money...

“In the situations I can say we looked into, there was no further for us to go, and we determined there was no violation.”

Did they look into all 300 items listed (especially all those from professional autograph brokers)?

Here is my impression of those investigations:

Compliance Officer - Jadeveon, did you get paid for those autographs?

Jadeveon - Nope

Compliance Officer - Calling Autograph broker.... No Answer!   Well, no evidence of wrong doing here!!!


Please, all those kids are signing mini-helmets and mini-footballs by the hundreds because they like to practice their autographing skills!!!  Give me a break!


The kids thought they found a safe way to make a few bucks.  Johnny Manziel just went too far, and it at risk of getting caught.  Still no hard evidence, but then again the NCAA doesn't need hard evidence (just ask PSU about the NCAA's due process requirements)

reisb4
reisb4

Except it's very strange the A&M can't say, "we have investigated and there is no violation"...why is that? hmm.  If it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck...

Rickapolis
Rickapolis

Nicely placed story to take some of the heat off of Manziel. "See, they're ALL doing it". We should have seen this one coming.

Cool
Cool

@CharlesOwen In the cut throat SEC conference, I wouldn't be surprised if these "brokers" were hired by other universities to entice top players into engaging in these things.  It would explain why we don't know who the broker is and why it was taped.

MarcBrauer
MarcBrauer

@CharlesOwen If I read the story right, the scumbag "broker" (a.k.a. leach) videotaped the signing to preserve the authenticity of the signatures. Of course that story is supposed to legitimize the video but seems to make him look worse as he's only trying to further guarantee more money for the items.

MarcBrauer
MarcBrauer

@Sean D Unfortunately you can't fine these worthless leaches for their seedy behavior. The trick is that these kids need to stay away from them...period. It would be nice if Johnny's parents actually did some, I don't know...PARENTING and help their kid out.

jhsweeney
jhsweeney

@Sean D Fined for what?  By whom?

It turns out that it is 100% legal to sell autographed stuff on ebay.  

It is also 100% legal to pay someone to autograph stuff that you plan to sell on ebay.

The brokers have no relationship with and no obligations to the NCAA

Whatever
Whatever

@jhsweeney They said they investigated him and other student-athletes. If they did not do a proper investigation, then the NCAA could find the school liable for further violations of covering it up, lying to the NCAA about it, etc.

Whatever
Whatever

@reisb4 I can't believe Sumlin and A&M haven't been on top of Manziel hard about 6 months ago to get him to pull his head out of his (&^(*^&* and straighten up. If they haven't, then they're as stupid as he is.

drax
drax

@Rickapolis The purpose of the original story is not necessarily to take the heat off of Manziel, but instead to refute the inference of the ESPN article that, because he was bulk signing autographs, Manziel must be guilty of taking payment.  Who would do such a thing if they weren't getting paid, right?

The GBH article shows that, with only a cursory walk through the world of Ebay, the act of bulk signings can be shown as relatively commonplace for NCAA stars and not automatically the mark of a devious act.

mystafugee
mystafugee

@MarcBrauer @CharlesOwen Who cares what his intent is?  Is he really any different than the NCAA?  He's trying to make a buck off the kid and at least in this case Manziel at least gets a share.  

jhsweeney
jhsweeney

Some of the administration and staff at Penn State should go to prison, but punishing the football team seems off base.

jhsweeney
jhsweeney

@Whatever @jhsweeney Nobody said the schools were lying.  They asked the student.  They asked the seller.  Nobody said money changed hands.  They really don't have any evidence of wrong doing!!! 

MarcBrauer
MarcBrauer

@Whatever @reisb4 Unfortunately this happened in January for Johnny...would have had to go back 7 months...I get what you're saying though...it's to protect their jobs and their program as much as keeping Johnny out of trouble. If this kid isn't on the field for the upcoming season, they can then blame themselves.

Cool
Cool

@mystafugee @jhsweeney @Sean D only idiots like you keep thinking we believe it is a crime,, you are to thick headed to understand we just want these scum bags revealed and not held up as the hero's you have elevated them to.

kguenther
kguenther

@mystafugee @jhsweeney Not any more...and what is the proof that the football program caused the problem?  The report prepared by the same Louis Freeh who erroneously blamed Richard Jewell for the Olympic bombing in 1996?

mystafugee
mystafugee

@jhsweeney The football programs CAUSED the problem.  Are you telling me this would have been covered up if it was the English Dept.?  As for the players, they can all transfer without penalty.