Meet Brian Butler, hustler extraordinaire:
… Butler, a former rapper and cellphone call-center manager, is among a new breed of entrepreneurs inserting themselves into college football recruiting. Some say he is navigating gray areas of N.C.A.A. rules and brokering his clients’ futures for personal gain. Others say he is providing his clients with exposure they would not normally receive by leveraging connections he has made during the recruitment of the Brown brothers to create a market for lesser players.
At 5 feet 8 inches and 350 pounds, he was known as Big B during his rap career. He said he once opened for Ludacris during a tour stop at Kansas Coliseum, although that could not be verified. He has worked numerous jobs, including as a telemarketer and as an employee at a liquor store.
Money has long been an issue, he said, and he has spent years fending off bill collectors. In 1997, he was arrested in a forgery case and pleaded guilty to a felony charge, which he said had since been expunged from his record. A state tax warrant was filed last year for his failure to pay $983.75, which Butler said he had since settled.
He said he has never asked a coach or a university for money, but he also said he did not vet every donor to his nonprofit organization.
As you can guess, it’s a helluva story. Almost nothing this guy claims could be verified. But he’s got kids and schools at his beck and call. And how this guy can do this without being called an agent is beyond me:
… Butler said he would explore the possibility of Brown’s skipping college and going to the Canadian Football League next season if approached by a team. He mentioned the idea of a team paying Brown $5 million a year for three years. But the salary cap for entire C.F.L. teams is $4.2 million Canadian.
“If they were talking about any amount of real money,” Butler said, “I’d guarantee it.”
This is the saddest quote, though.
“Recruiting for college football is obviously changing,” Prince said in a telephone interview. “It’s become much more like the basketball model. When that happens, you then have people who are intermediaries like this gentleman is.”
That can’t be good.
5 responses to ““If there’s anybody that needs to be making money off of me, it needs to be the person that’s put the time in.””
Glad we’re not one of the teams listed as ones Brown is considering. When your own HS coach bad-mouths you during the recruiting season, that is bad.
From the picture and the quotes, that guy must talk just like Prop Joe from ‘The Wire’
“I know that I’m the most connected guy in Wichita and probably in Kansas.”
It is to laugh. Isn’t that kind of like being the richest guy in Somalia? Or the best-looking male student at Georgia Tech?
The way I see it, there’s just too much overt sleaze present in the very definition of these “recruiting managers” for this trend to last very long. It’ll build for a few more seasons, a handful of guys like Butler will get rich and have stories written about them on ESPN.com, and then one or two of them will kick the greed into overdrive and put their clients in an Albert Means-type situation — after which no high-school player hoping for a serious shot with a D-IA program will ever deal with people of their ilk again.
At least, that’s what I’m hoping.
Does he dress like Huggy Bear?