UNC documents detail alleged benefits

Updated: October 23, 2010, 7:53 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -- Three people acted as "prospective agents" by providing benefits to North Carolina Tar Heels players in connection with the ongoing NCAA investigation into the program, including one who works for NFL agent Drew Rosenhaus, according to school documents.

The university named Rosenhaus employee Michael Katz in documents sent to the NCAA seeking to reinstate players who were suspended or being held out of games due to the probe. Katz is listed on the Rosenhaus Sports Representation Web site as the firm's director of marketing and client services.

Reached by phone Friday night, Rosenhaus denied the report.

"My comment is that report is false," he said. "I did talk to my employee and at no time did he provide any benefits of any kind to any college players whatsoever.

The documents, released Friday after public records requests made by media outlets, redacted the names of players and details in each case. But they said Katz provided a player with a wristband that gained entrance to a pool party, while a second player received a wristband from a teammate that was originally provided by Katz.

Others named: Former UNC and Marshall player Chris Hawkins, who is also connected to the suspension of Georgia's A.J. Green; and Todd Stewart of Washington, D.C.

The documents said that Stewart booked and paid for hotel rooms for an unspecified player, saying he qualified as an agent through "self-identified ties with a financial advising firm." In a recent interview with ESPN.com's Joe Schad, Stewart said he was close with several college and NFL players, but said he isn't paid by an agent. He also acknowledged he attended some South Florida parties this spring attended by college football standouts from multiple schools.

"There were parties and they were popular," Stewart told Schad. "But it wasn't some conspiracy to get players for sports agents."

Hawkins was mentioned for providing "minimal" benefits while identifying himself as a "financial advisor." Hawkins was previously connected to trips to Atlanta and Las Vegas made by cornerback Kendric Burney, who recently completed an NCAA-issued six-game suspension for improper benefits yet remains out due to an unresolved issue.

Hawkins also paid $1,000 for the jersey of Green, a transaction that resulted in Green's four-game suspension because the NCAA said Hawkins qualified as an agent.

Hawkins had been around the North Carolina program in recent years and is a friend of former Tar Heels and NFL running back Willie Parker. But in a letter dated Oct. 4 -- also released Friday -- athletic director Dick Baddour told Hawkins that the school was taking "formal action to disassociate" itself from him. That included refusing to accept any financial donations from Hawkins to the athletic department and barring him from players, coaches and the Chapel Hill campus athletic facilities for at least 5 years.

Baddour had said in September that Hawkins was no longer welcome around the football facility.

Page Pate, an Atlanta-based attorney representing Hawkins in an unrelated drug charge, declined comment Friday night.

A total of 16 football players have been affected by the investigations into academic misconduct, receiving improper benefits and improper contact with agents. Three players' -- Marvin Austin, Greg Little and Robert Quinn -- careers are over. Three more have been ruled ineligible for the season, seven have returned to the team and three remain in question.

Coach Butch Davis said tailback Ryan Houston hopes to redshirt after the investigation. Safety Deunta Williams recently returned from an NCAA-issued four-game suspension for improper benefits connected to trips.

North Carolina (4-2) plays at No. 25 Miami on Saturday.

ESPN.com's ACC football blogger Heather Dinich, ESPN.com's Joe Schad and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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