Oklahoma finds Peterson's car deal legitimate

Updated: April 19, 2006, 1:19 PM ET
Associated Press

NORMAN, Okla. -- Oklahoma's compliance department investigated the circumstances by which tailback Adrian Peterson bought a car and then returned it several weeks later but determined the arrangement did not violate NCAA regulations.

Peterson, the runner-up for the Heisman Trophy in 2004, secured a financing agreement and drove the car for several weeks last winter but then returned it, said Bonita Jackson, Peterson's mother.

"We were gonna purchase the car, but the payments were gonna be too high, so we took the car back," Jackson said.

Oklahoma officials determined that Peterson did not receive an extra benefit that is not available to the general student body of the university.

"We have pursued the matter in exhaustive fashion over a five-month period," Oklahoma associate athletic director Keith Gill said in a statement. "Based on the information we have gathered, we do not believe NCAA rules violations have occurred."

The dealership, Big Red Sports and Imports, regularly allowed customers who signed contracts to drive the cars for a period of time before financing had been secured, said Brad McRae, the dealership's part-owner at the time of Peterson's agreement.

"We didn't do anything wrong," McRae said. "Is it standard operating business practice? Yes, it's standard operating business practice."

Peterson's stepfather said his family is committed to keeping Peterson eligible for football.

"This is our child's future," Frankie Jackson said. "We don't want anything to happen to him because of some silly car deal. We're not going to do anything to jeopardize his future."

Oklahoma also investigated the employment of football players by the dealership but found no violations.


Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press