Hill, Debose, Patchan named in Yahoo! report on Miami booster providing improper benefits

Updated at 9:45 p.m.

A report released Tuesday by Yahoo! Sports concerning the intricate dealings of a Miami Hurricanes booster who was jailed for heading up a $930 million Ponzi scheme contains the names of three members of the current Florida Gators football team.

In 100 hours of jailhouse interviews during Yahoo! Sports’ 11-month investigation, Hurricanes booster Nevin Shapiro described a sustained, eight-year run of rampant NCAA rule-breaking, some of it with the knowledge or direct participation of at least seven coaches from the Miami football and basketball programs. At a cost that Shapiro estimates in the millions of dollars, he said his benefits to athletes included but were not limited to cash, prostitutes, entertainment in his multimillion-dollar homes and yacht, paid trips to high-end restaurants and nightclubs, jewelry, bounties for on-field play (including bounties for injuring opposing players), travel and, on one occasion, an abortion.

Of the seven coaches specifically named in the report, one is current Florida wide receivers coach Aubrey Hill, who was hired by head coach Will Muschamp as he assembled his brand new staff this past offseason. Hill, a former UF player and also the Gators’ new recruiting coordinator, was receivers coach at Miami from 2008-10 and added the recruiting coordinator role to his responsibilities last season.

Among the specific incidents, Shapiro or other sources say Hurtt, Hill, Stoutland, Pannunzio and Allen all delivered top-tier recruits to Shapiro’s home or luxury suite so the booster could make recruiting pitches to them. Among the players who were ushered to Shapiro while they were still in high school: [...] eventual Florida commitments Andre Debose (Hurtt) and Matt Patchan (prompted by Stoutland and Pannunzio) [...]

In accompanying reports detailing specifics about each coach and player, Robinson notes Hill was “on hand when three recruits – Andre Debose, Ray-Ray Armstrong and Dyron Dye – were brought to Shapiro’s $6 million Miami Beach mansion for the purposes of the booster recruiting the players. Hill was on hand while Shapiro toured the players through his home and made a pitch to lure their commitment to Miami.” Shapiro also said he took the recruits out in his $200,000 Mercedes S65.

Robinson goes on to report that “Shapiro alleges he provided Debose with extra benefits during recruiting visits.” In addition to the dealings listed above, Shapiro said he “gave Miami equipment assistant Sean Allen approximately $2,000 to $3,000 in cash and instructed him to show Debose, Armstrong and Dye a good time. Shapiro said Allen ultimately used the money to take the players to nightclubs, including Take One Cocktail lounge and strip club.” Debose (now a redshirt sophomore) allegedly visited Shapiro’s house again “for another gathering” where he was “served food and drinks” and attended a meeting at Lucky Strike Lanes where Shapiro hosted recruits as they watched NFL games, ate and drank for free.

As far as Patchan (now a redshirt junior) is concerned, he allegedly joined “multiple members” of his family at Shapiro’s mansion for a meal. “Shapiro said the recruiting visit at his home was attended by the two Miami coaches, Patchan, Patchan’s mother, Patchan’s father and Patchan’s uncle.”

Due to their inclusion in the report, a situation may arise where Hill, Debose and Patchan might be forced to remain off the field at the very least as a precaution until a conclusion is reached one way or another on their respective eligibility.

As noted by Yahoo!‘s Charles Robinson early in the report, Shapiro’s admissions bring a lot of the Hurricanes’ recruiting practices into question and could severely damage the program and those associated with the allegations for some time to come.

All told, the length, breadth and depth of the impropriety Shapiro has alleged would potentially breach multiple parts of at least four major NCAA bylaws – and possibly many more. Shapiro described acts that could include violations of multiple parts of bylaw 11, involving impermissible compensation to coaches; multiple parts of bylaw 12, involving amateurism of athletes; multiple parts of bylaw 13, involving improper recruiting activity; and multiple parts of bylaw 16, involving extra benefits to athletes.

In addition to all of this, Robinson also details Shapiro putting bounties on the heads of star players from opposing teams, giving Miami’s student-athletes an even greater reason to play hard and make an impact on the field.

The booster told Yahoo! Sports he had a number of individual payouts for “hit of the game” and “big plays.” He also put bounties on specific players, including Florida Gators quarterback Tim Tebow and a three-year standing bounty on Seminoles quarterback Chris Rix from 2002 to 2004, offering $5,000 to any player who knocked him out of a game.

In the one contest against the Hurricanes that Tebow participated in (Sept. 6, 2008), the Gators signal caller went 21-of-35 for 256 yards and tossed two touchdowns while also carrying the ball 13 times for 55 yards. He was only sacked once.

One more Florida reference from the report involves former Gators guard Teddy Dupay, whose name was used as an alias by Shapiro when registering rooms at the Mercury Hotel in South Beach for players to copulate with prostitutes.

The University of Florida declined Yahoo!‘s request to make Hill, Debose or Patchan available for comment, but associate athletics director of communications Steve McClain released an official statement Tuesday evening.

“While we declined comment for Yahoo’s request, Coach Hill indicated he was very comfortable with, and very confident in how he conducted himself while at the University of Miami.”

Robinson’s report, which details alleged widespread illegal activities throughout Miami’s football and basketball programs, can be read in full by clicking here.

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34 Responses to “Hill, Debose, Patchan named in Yahoo! report on Miami booster providing improper benefits”

  1. Ken (CA) says:

    wow! When i first started reading it sounded very bad, as I got farther in it sounds like worst case scenario Hill resigns, no impact on UF whou couldn’t have known about it.

    I have to admit though, when i first saw the headline, my thought was (Oh gawd, what legacy has Will left us with now”?, not Aubrey Hill!

  2. Matt says:

    IF TRUE AND HILL HAS TO GO…BIG IF…THEN GO GET ANOTHER BIG TIME FORMER PRO AT THE WIDE RECEIVER POSITION THAT ALL KIDS WOULD WANT TO PLAY FOR AND MAKE D.J. DURKIN THE NEW RECRUITING COORDINATOR. AGAIN WAY TO EARLY BUT IF THIS HAPPENS TO BE TRUE THIS IS ON THE LEVEL OF SMU!

  3. SaraGator says:

    Wow, this guy is a POS! Have to admit, it doesn’t surprise me he’s tied to Miami.

    Knowing Jeremy Foley, I bet he caught wind of this early and had already contacted the NCAA to determine how involved Hill, Patchan and Debose are to the investigation.

  4. CeeThree says:

    Aubrey is toast in my book. This situation reads so bad, that it isn’t even funny. I really hope Debose and Patchan don’t have to miss time, and if they do, that their careers aren’t over (same goes for Orson Charles, etc). I feel bad for the kids who just got to Miami, and the ones who didn’t get anything.

    I also feel terrible for Al Golden, his staff, and their families who just uprooted and moved less than a year ago, man, this is just really ugly.

    With all that said, and being sincere it all of it.. hell yeah!!!! the floodgates to South Florida recruits has never been this wide open, bring em on in.

  5. Tractorr says:

    From the reports thus far, it sounds like Muschamp is not that high on Debose to begin with. Even if Hill has to resign probably not too big a loss. Patchan on the other hand, that could be a problem. We are already thin on the line. Damn.

    Oh and Miami, see ya wouldn’t want to be ya.

  6. David says:

    This is crazy. If true, bye bye Hill. Big question: Patchan played in ’08, right? If so, and he is deemed ineligible, we would have to vacate the ’08 National Championship? Really worried right now. I also feel terrible for Al Golden. Hopefully, we can get Tracy Howard now.

    • SaraGator says:

      Didn’t Patchan’s dad play for Miami? If so, then I’m sure he’s also a booster.

      Sounds to me it was a dinner amongst a couple of booster’s and their families.

  7. Gio Showtime says:

    I don’t understand why everyone is calling for Hill to be fired. He was obviously a product of the irresponsible culture when he was coaching at UM. From reports, he’s been doing a terrific job developing the receivers and he’s not too shabby at recruiting (see: Nelson Agholor and Stefon Diggs). All that cheating BS might have been the norm in Miami, but it sure won’t fly in Gainesville. And I’m sure he was aware of that when taking this job. Let’s not forget he’s a former Gator. Forgive and forget.

    P.S. What coach/player at UM WASN’T affected by this booster problem? Again, this was obviously an institutional problem. Even if they weren’t named in the report, I’m sure they were involved somehow. Shapiro isn’t the only scumbag booster in the world.

    • Gio Showtime says:

      I don’t think it’s a big deal. Hill, Debose, and Patchan turned down opportunities at a corrupt program to join the Gator Nation. The recruits could have still enjoyed wild nights with strippers and at Mansion on South Beach, but they decided to come to Gainesville because of their respect for the game. I’ll tell you this much: I wouldn’t have turned down Shapiro’s bargain if I was in their shoes. And I would have deservedly suffered the consequences. If that doesn’t say enough about their character, then this system is all messed up.

  8. SaraGator says:

    I laughed at Shapiro using Teddy Dupay’s name while registering for hotels.

    What a POS!

  9. Rory says:

    You gotta think how many recruits partook and went else where? If so how will they be punished and the other schools they went too same question? This technically could blow the roof off of college football. Keep hill and the players, deal with the consequences and move in from this scum bag. Move along nothing to see here!

  10. John S says:

    I don’t think any of this affects their eligibility. Wait and see on Hill, unless he was a bag man he was just doing his job. Well I guess Miami is Miami. Ugly, good thing most of their fans aren’t alumni or they would be embarrassed.

  11. g8ter27 says:

    Wow!!! I do not think the players (Patchan and Debose) will suffer from this since they did not go to Miami and like one reader stated, how many other players visited there and did not atttend all over the country? Hill on the other hand may not be so lucky…lets not forget Saban has a couple of those coaches now too so this could get really interesting. This also answers an old question of why Ray Ray decided to go to Miami when he was leaning hard to the gators at one point. Wonder of any recruits out there that were leaning towards the Canes may chnage their minds now? Lil Luke, you is a baaadddddd man! Ha! Go Gators!

  12. Spik says:

    It is not a violation for the player for a high school player to be wined and dined. It is s violation for the school that a booster did it. Worst Case for the player- they would not be eligible to sign a loi with the offending school.

  13. George says:

    I want to think positive and hope that Debose & Patchan have good character. And that they chose UF for the right reasons. Hill’s involvement with UM will have less of an impact @ UF. But…there’s the other side of the coin. After the USC issues came out, I’ve thought I wouldn’t be surprised if UF is next. The similarities between USC & UF are uncanny. Relatively short term coaches(Carroll, Meyer). Multiple National Championships. Hiesman winners. Consecutive top 5 recruiting classes. Both coaches are no longer employed by these programs. Hopefully these coincidences are no more than that. Hopefully UF achieved all of our success the right way. Hopefully the other side of the coin is not tainted by boosters.

    • chigator says:

      Considering the fact that Meyer is all over ESPN saying that secondary violations are meaningless and coaches should face stiffer penalties (multiple game bans), I would be shocked if he ran a dirty program. I think Meyer’s biggest issue was being soft on player conduct and being too much of a friend. Players being arrested for smoking pot or drinking is different than receiving cash on the side.

    • tailgator says:

      Agreed! It would be ignorant to think that situations like this aren’t going on here or at every other big division I program. It might not be as severe or to the same extent, but don’t think recruiting violations aren’t happening all the time. College athletics has come to the point where if you aren’t doing it you can’t compete with the other schools in the recruiting game.

    • John S says:

      While I doubt the Gators and their boosters are completely innocent, I don’t believe it is an institutional issue.

      We had a lot of attention and a lot of hate coming from the media in the Meyer years. I would think that if there was something terrible going on someone would have found it. They were certainly looking for it.

    • CeeThree says:

      um.. I fail to see what you do, there are no similarities between USC and UF.. UF was recruiting like that even prior to Meyer, USC had been all but irrelevant. Also, Carroll left UNDER suspicion, and rumors of the Reggie Bush thing for years, he knew what was coming. Urban left cause he physically couldn’t handle it (anyone else notice how grey his hair his now compared to his introductory PC? we ate that guy up), and I’ve not heard of any pending investigation. Nice try though.

    • Ken (CA) says:

      Carroll actually only won 1 championship, not multiple, and now that one is gone….

  14. Jesse C says:

    Apparently Miami’s last coach wasn’t the do-gooder he made himself out to be… you can’t spell SCUM without UM.

  15. Mr2Bits says:

    The worst part about this whole article is this : In one instance, Shapiro described taking a player to the Pink Pony strip club and paying for a dancer to engage in sex with the athlete. In the ensuing weeks, Shapiro said the dancer called one of his security providers and informed him that the player had gotten her pregnant during the incident. Shapiro said he gave the dancer $500 to have an abortion performed, without notifying the player of the incident.

    “I was doing him a favor,” the booster said. “That idiot might have wanted to keep [the baby].”

    • Tractorr says:

      It stands to reason that a woman making a living off her body does not want to have a baby.

    • g8ter27 says:

      Yes I thought that part was bad myself, I mean a girl from the Pink Pony getting pregnant by a customer???? Not going to happen, those girls in that place are nothing but class. I could see maybe the Doll House or somewhere else but the Pony? No, Lil Luke must be making that up. Ha ha.

  16. Mr2Bits says:

    Also, for those of you calling for Hill’s head, lets pump the brakes.Hill is no more ineligible to coach than is Lane Kiffin, or his staff, or the rest of the South Cal staff under the previous regime, or Galen Hall, or any other coach that has ever been on a staff during a violation. Only if Hill gets a show cause order will there be any trouble.

    Getting a gift meant to induce a recruit to sign with Da U means that the athlete will be ineligible at Da U, just as Cam Newton would have been ineligible at Cowbell State but was not at Auburn. Pachan and Debose did nothing wrong except be recruited by UM in illegal fashion. They did not sign with that institution so this will not affect their playing status.

    • CeeThree says:

      Hill, for me personally, has nothing to do with “eligibility.” I could care less. It’s about perception and trust. The perception is going to be he’s a cheater. The truth is I don’t know if I can trust him. This is UF. I can get an equal or better coach without the baggage. Sorry Aubrey.

      • Mr2Bits says:

        It will be interesting to see what happens to him. It looks like everyone in the administration was involved so who knows what Hill was forced to do. He could just tell the NCAA he reported the issues and was told not to worry about it, do his job and move on. I read the whole article and saw nothing that directly linked him or our players to anything evidentiary. Not too mention what our players did in recruiting will not affect their eligibility as they did not sign with the illegal institution. UF on the other hand may ask him to resign to avoid any clouds hanging over the program.

        I really wish this happened to FSU and not UM though.

        • SC Gator says:

          Indeed.

          Also, need to remember that while Hill was a GA at UF previously, his time in Miami was his first at a big name college as a coach. Obviously he should have (and probably did) know that what was going on was wrong but he was probably under a great deal of pressure to fit in.

          They haven’t specifically said anything about the Florida 3 but the NCAA has been working with the schools with players detailed in the report to confirm eligibility. So far about half of the non-UM players have already been cleared.

        • Nick says:

          “I really wish this happened to FSU and not UM though.”

          Go idea to keeep wishing like that, otherwise its probably going to be total pwnage again this year.

  17. npgator says:

    The person above who suggested that we vacate the 2008 BCS needs to put away the crack pipe! We will have nothing happen to us or the names listed in this report.

  18. Everyone- I have calls in with people who do this stuff for a living (NCAA bylaws, penalties, etc.) The speculation is fine if you want to keep doing it, but I plan to have relatively concrete answers shortly.

    • CeeThree says:

      sweet, I just saw on Twitter that UGA has already gotten word from (the joke that is) the NCAA that Orson Charles is good to go. Hoping for the same quick outcome for Dre and Matt.

    • CH says:

      Thank you Adam – I’ll climb back in the window until I hear further notice from you.

      I’m with CeeThree on how I feel about Hill – using the excuse, “my boss made me” or “everyone else was doing it” doesn’t fly. If he’s guilty and not saying he is, but any coach that has shown poor character choices in the past needs to be let go. I’d say the same for Coach Boom or Charlie – this is about the program, which is bigger and better than any once coach.

  19. scooterp says:

    The new ESPN series “40 for 40: Death of a Program” should be aired in 2021. Can that program get any more sleezy? I don’t know how Hill can escape this with his job intact. Whether this was common knowledge among the leaders in the athletic dept. or not, when 6 different coaches are parading underage recruits to a scumbag boosters house with food, liquer and whores your ability to lead young men must be questioned. …. As far as Debose and Patchan are concerned, I actually appaud them for using good judgment and not getting sucked in to that crap.

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