A former New York Times and Sports Illustrated reporter alleges Auburn committed a variety of NCAA violations during the 2010 BCS National Championship season.

Selena Roberts, an Auburn alumna, writes in a story on Roopstigo, a website she founded, that Auburn committed a variety of NCAA violations including payment of players and changing grades in 2010.

Roberts interviewed former Auburn safety Mike McNeil, one of four former Tigers who were arrested for an armed robbery in 2011, and “more than a dozen players” from the BCS title team including Neiko Thorpe, Darvin Adams and Mike Blanc. She goes on record reporting that players had grades changed to remain academically eligible, were provided with excessive sums of money for hosting recuits and “more than 40” tested positive for drugs after the title game.

According to her story, said the former Auburn safety: “It’s a business and there are players on the payroll.”

Auburn University has refused to comment on the story.

In the report, as many as nine players, including running back Mike Dyer, would be ineligible for the 2010 title game due to academic ineligibility, though Dyer is not quoted in the story. McNeil said he had a grade changed in a computer science class from “an F to a C.”

Other allegations covered in the story:
• McNeil was given $400 after a practice by former defensive coordinator Will Muschamp
• Former receiver Darvin Adams was offered “several thousand dollars” to return for his senior season
• McNeil was given $500 to entertain top recruit Dre Kirkpatrick on his visit to Auburn

Thorpe is quoted as saying, “Auburn does whatever Auburn wants” and “a special recruit was treated like a king.”

Roberts reports that “dozens of players were being randomly drug tested internally” prior to the BCS title game, and “more than 40” tested positive afterward.

Muschamp, Thorpe and Blanc have offered denials since the report was released. And I believe them. Nothing like this would ever happen in Lee County.

Auburn is still thought to be under NCAA investigation for a number of issues, including the grade changing saga of Memphis standout Jovan Robinson.

Watch Selena Roberts’ video on ESPN regarding her allegations here.

(Follow ITK on Twitter for Bama news, commentary and smack.)

15 thoughts on “Auburn alumna alleges paid players, changed grades during 2010 season”

  1. Joe Schad just reported on ESPN that Dre Kirkpatrick said hardly any money was spent on him during his recruitment. Could it be that maybe Mr. Mcneil doesn’t like AU due to the fact that he is facing about 20 years in prison?????

    1. Could it be that the money McNeil was given to entertain Dre wasn’t spent on Dre?

      I don’t think it’s safe to assume anything.

      But if you read her story, the reasons why they don’t talk much are pretty clear—–talk, and you’re silenced and punished.

      I mean, when do you hear follow-ups with the writer about articles with quotes from players? There’s been more information about the article itself since it was published than was included in the article in the first place. Doesn’t that already say enough?

      So, for example, let’s assume, just for the sake of argument, that none of the Auburn players in any part of her article did anything illegal and/or against NCAA rules. Just saying they are afraid to talk about it has to mean something. I mean, I’m a red-blooded, God-fearing American, so I hate Auburn, too. But these players, the cultish treatment they were shown and continue to be shown, it sounds so much like what I’ve heard about Scientology——–you can’t leave, and you can’t talk about it if you do because they’ll do more than just deny, they’ll hurt.

      It’s scary. I don’t know what you can do for a player who decides to go to Auburn. It’s like, I want to joke about Auburn, but I honestly feel so bad for some of these players that I am not sure what exactly to say.

      That doesn’t mean I’m ok with the armed robberies or taking money—-I’m sure, if they happened, that makes you a bad person. But that’s a separate issue from the problem at-large in the article. I don’t know how you fix it, either. But you have to give the author credit for realizing the discrepancies in the court cases of several players where she graduated college, then having the balls to pursue and publish the results. I don’t care if you take all of it out of context, it’s simply not at all what you hear players ever saying about the University of Alabama, or any other school that I can think of for that matter minus maybe Miami University.

      But, like Scientology, I’m not sure what it will take to reveal the problems enough to solve them. I don’t think an article like this will be enough, even if all of the worst parts of it are completely accurate.

      I don’t think it’s unfair for us to be glad our culture and our football players don’t ever talk about Alabama this way, either. Roll Tide.

  2. I am an AU fan but I try to be a realistic one. I know that if AU cheated and it’s proven with actual facts that they did then we deserve whatever punishment comes down from the NCAA. It’s starting to feel like the Chizik hire might go down as the darkest of times for AU football, but I am still hoping that this is just a kids anger coming out on a football program. In any case this is going to make writing for this board a lot more fun for you ITK!! Keep up the good work…you always keep me entertained!

    1. The problem is it can’t change anything. The NCAA, for example, if they start asking more questions, they’ll run into the same roadblock—-if they can’t get paper or people to remain committed to going on the record, they can’t do anything.

      I’m not trying to get Auburn busted. I’m saying I’d be proud of the reporter who cares enough to do it. The story is about a guy facing a sentence that will change his life, but all I’m hearing about is how much people care or deny a $400 cash-grab or a failing grade to a barely-passing grade. Auburn won’t cooperate (which I understand but don’t respect), and the story (and earlier stories) make it even clearer why they can’t get anywhere with it.

      That’s because the power of Auburn is more frightening to a former player or coach than the power of the NCAA, and it goes far beyond the football coach and athletic director. The NCAA will take your rings away, Auburn will take your freedom away.

      I don’t want any school to have that kind of problem. I can’t imagine the courage it takes to pursue and publish something like this, but I have to give her credit for it, and for those reasons alone I don’t think it’s fair to assume anyone, especially an alumni, would say these kinds of things just for attention. Finebaum, maybe. Travis, sure. But Roberts is someone we all listen to because or her track record. I don’t know if we’ll ever be able to have the answers outside a full confession from Chizik (not that I’m saying it’s all true), but I’d be proud to have alumni like Roberts trying to fix a potential situation the NCAA can’t do much about anymore.

    2. Wish everyone on the Net had your spirit and shall i say ‘softer’ side.

      It is what it is and we can’t change a thing.If i could go back in time i would Jack Up Harvey’s ass the minute he got in the Auburn city limits.

    1. No, that is an amazingly insightful article. This may be the only time I can say that about anything Clay Travis writes, so somebody write this down.

      1. It makes me feel dirty to admit it, but Travis has been right on most of his analysis.

  3. I don’t see how any parents could choose to send their kids to Auburn to play football at this point in time. Maybe later, when things are clear, but right now Auburn is as dirty as Penn State.

    1. So is Izzy Gould…this Yid would rather lie when the truth would serve him better…I can’t stand the sight of this worthless lump of gefiltifish.

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