Taylor's rings, trophy net $28,500
OMAHA, Neb. -- A court-ordered auction of former Nebraska football player Aaron Taylor's championship hardware brought in $28,500.
It took about 30 minutes to sell Taylor's seven championship rings and his Outland Trophy on Saturday. Bids were taken in person and online, with the bronze statue netting the highest bid of $6,800. The diamond-encrusted rings sold for $2,000 to $5,900.
The auction was forced by the failure of the Huskers-themed Scarlet and Cream Letter Club restaurant, and Taylor's resulting bankruptcy. Taylor started the restaurant in Omaha with other former Nebraska players.
The liquidation has upset many Nebraska fans, and some of them donated money to help Taylor try to purchase some of the items at the auction.
Taylor did not immediately respond to phone and e-mail messages Saturday.
The bankruptcy trustee in the case, Philip Kelly, said that the identities of the online bidders were not immediately known, but it didn't appear Taylor had put in any winning bids.
Taylor is one of seven Nebraska players to have won the Outland Trophy and is the only Cornhusker to be awarded All-American honors at two different positions (offensive center and guard).
During his career, he helped the Huskers to a 49-2 record and four straight bowl game wins, including undefeated seasons and national titles in 1994, '95 and '97.
In his initial bankruptcy filing last summer, Taylor said he owed at least $109,543 and had assets worth $5,300. The filing excluded the value of his rings and Outland Trophy.
Taylor's biggest debts are the taxes the restaurant failed to pay the state and federal government, including $69,000 owed to the IRS. Because he was an officer in the restaurant corporation, he is held liable for its taxes.
Taylor had tried and failed to exclude his memorabilia from the bankruptcy liquidation.
His lawyer, James Nisley, said bankruptcy laws wouldn't allow the championship rings and trophy to be excluded from Taylor's assets under Chapter 7 rules. And Taylor's case didn't qualify for another type of bankruptcy that might have allowed him to keep the items.
Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press
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