Uncle Luke, the man whose booty-shaking madness made the U.S. Supreme Court stand up for free speech, gets as nasty as he wants to be for Miami New Times. This week, Luke says its time to investigate Drew Rosenhaus.
It's time for the NFL Players Association (NFLPA) to investigate North Miami native and sports agent Drew Rosenhaus. For too long, the league has looked the other way when it comes to Rosenhaus' shady business tactics and questionable representation of his clients. Last week, Yahoo! Sports broke the latest scandal to engulf the multimillionaire self-proclaimed "shark that never sleeps."
Sunny Isles Beach-based luxury auto dealer Christopher Pinkow, who is facing federal tax fraud charges, told Yahoo! that employees of Rosenhaus Sports Representation (RSR) accepted tens of thousands of dollars in kickbacks or services for steering players to purchase or rent vehicles from his business, Icon Auto. Pinkow alleged some Rosenhaus employees directed him to inflate prices on purchases and luxury rentals by NFL players.
To bolster his case, the car magnate showed bank deposit slips, a cashier's check, and an automobile transaction record that allegedly showed more than $40,000 paid to RSR employees.
It isn't the first time Rosenhaus has been accused of cheating clients for personal gain. In the February 2012 issue of GQ, ex-NFL wide receiver Terrell Owens claimed Rosenhaus, who was once his agent, had recommended a lawyer and an investment firm that lost him millions of dollars. Owens and four other former NFL players represented by Rosenhaus are suing the attorney, Pamela Linden, and her law firm, Miami-based Greenberg Traurig, to recoup millions of dollars they lost in an ill-fated Alabama casino entertainment complex.
As part of his recruitment of college athletes entering the NFL draft, Rosenhaus is known to hand out signing bonuses. Under NFLPA rules, agents are prohibited from offering or giving money to prospective players or their family and friends as an enticement to sign. Rosenhaus gets around it by calling the payola a "marketing fee" that is recouped after his clients sign a contract with the team that selects them.
Rosenhaus relentlessly skirts the rules, but no one calls him out. Heck, WSVN features him prominently on its Sunday sports segment as the messiah of sports agents. It's time he stops getting a free pass.
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If the NFLPA won't investigate him, law enforcement should.
Follow Luke on Twitter: @unclelukereal1.