NCF Nation: Brian Butler

Yahoo! Sports' investigative report, which unearted all kind of violations at Miami, had arms that reached as far as West Texas, but its biggest impact in the Big 12 was felt in Manhattan, Kan.

Current Wildcats Arthur Brown (see his allegations here) and Bryce Brown (his allegations are here) were named in the report, which alleged that Arthur Brown received free meals, and a visit to a strip club that featured free drinks and entertainment in a VIP area. It also alleged that Arthur Brown received transportation in violation of NCAA rules and a hotel room for his family, including Bryce Brown, who also took part in one of the meals.

[+] EnlargeKansas State's Bryce Brown
AP Photo/Wade PayneBryce Brown's transfer from Tennessee to Kansas State may have saved him from suspension.
Kansas State, however, says the allegations will not affect the eligibility of either.

"Kansas State University has been in communication with the NCAA," the university said in a release. "Regarding Arthur Brown and Bryce Brown, the NCAA staff has informed the institution that it has no concerns about their eligibility to compete at K-State."

Kansas State also added that it would have no further comment.

What has allowed each player to escape punishment? According to a professor of sports administration at Ohio, Bryce Brown's enrollment at Tennessee and Arthur Brown's transfer from Miami.

From the Wichita Eagle:
"Based on current NCAA legislation, the ruling is what you would expect," said B. David Ridpath, a professor of sports administration at Ohio. "So is the timing. Violations like these don't follow you from school to school. As transfer students, there really is no way to punish them."

Recent NCAA rulings on player eligibility had K-State fans worried and considering a range of possibilities. While both players head into the upcoming season as planned, history also indicates they could have faced suspensions and missed up to as many as five games.

"I can't think of a case where violations have followed a kid to a new school," Ridpath said earlier Wednesday, before K-State's announcement."... That usually doesn't happen. It's almost like a get-out-of-jail free card."

The paper contacted the Brown brothers' adviser, Brian Butler, who admitted that they accepted a lunch and hotel room courtesy of Nevin Shapiro, the central figure of the scandal at Miami.

Arthur and Bryce Brown should both be major contributors for Kansas State this fall, but after the NCAA's decision, it looks like Wildcats fans can breathe a little easier.

Posted by ESPN.com's Chris Low

These post-signing day decisions are turning up roses for Tennessee's football team.

Running back Bryce Brown of Wichita, Kan., announced Monday that he was signing with Tennessee during a press conference at the Kansas Sports Hall of Fame.

The 6-foot, 215-pound Brown was rated by Scouts Inc. as the No. 2 running back prospect in the country and the eighth-best prospect overall in the ESPNU 150 rankings.

Brown joins running back David Oku as a pair of highly rated players signing late with the Vols, which only strengthens what was already a Top-15 class by first-year coach Lane Kiffin. Oku, who recently moved from Midwest City, Okla., to Lincoln, Neb., was rated by Scouts Inc. as the No. 13 running back prospect in the country.

If Brown turns out to be half as good a player as his recruitment has been bizarre, then the Vols are in for a treat.

Brown had been committed to Miami since last year, but opened up his recruitment and elected not to do anything on national signing day. He took additional visits, including trips to LSU and Tennessee, and was evasive about what his plans were.

He has an adviser, Brian Butler, who runs the show. And it's definitely been a show.

Butler is a former rapper and cell phone call center manager who advises, trains and handles all media requests for a group of players, including Brown.

The New York Times reported last month that the NCAA was investigating Butler, including his relationship with Brown. At one point, Butler was charging money for people to get updates on Brown's recruitment via a Web site, Potentialplayers.com. The Web site is still up and running, but Butler is no longer charging for the updates.

Butler also discussed the possibility of sending Brown straight to the CFL during the recruiting process, but that talk died down. Miami pulled out of the running and reportedly rescinded its scholarship offer, but an assortment of schools -- LSU, Kansas State, Oregon and Tennessee -- all continued to actively pursue Brown.

And on Monday, Brown ended this recruiting circus (aren't they all?) by saying he would sign with the Vols.

He's obviously a terrific player and is the kind of talent that could be a difference-maker immediately this fall when he gets on campus.

But with the NCAA poking around on his adviser, you can't help but wonder if he's worth the risk.

We'll find out soon enough.

Posted by ESPN.com's Tim Griffin

How about munching on these links today to serve as a natural accompaniment to watching ESPNU's coverage of signing day? Sounds to me like the best combination since peanut butter and jelly.

  • The Houston Chronicle's Steve Campbell catches up with former Texas cornerback Grady Cavness, one of the top Houston-area recruits in the class of 1989.
  • Baylor is finding a recruiting bump because of the presence of Art Briles and Robert Griffin, according to Waco Tribune-Herald beat writer John Werner.
  • Tulsa World columnist Dave Sittler writes about the natural law of signing day -- one group of recruits is soon forgotten as another new class arrives.
  • With key players like Texas recruit Garrett Gilbert, the Associated Press reports that the Lone Star State again will provide a bumper crop of quarterback recruits.
  • Thayer Evans and Pete Thamel of the New York Times profile Brian Butler, the self-proclaimed manager for top recruit Bryce Brown.
  • Iowa State coach Paul Rhoads told Eric Peterson of the Cedar Rapids Gazette he doesn't expect a dramatic roster transformation as he starts coaching the Cyclones.

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