Coach claims booster paid recruit

Updated: September 12, 2012, 5:13 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

A football coach in Nashville says he witnessed a booster give Mississippi State freshman defensive back Will Redmond money.

Byron De'Vinner, who has been interviewed by NCAA investigators, told the "Head to Head" radio show in Mississippi on Tuesday that he saw a "handshake" between the booster and Redmond, and that former Bulldogs receivers coach Angelo Mirando was aware of benefits.

De'Vinner confirmed to ESPN's Joe Schad on Tuesday afternoon that he called into the radio show. He said the handshake between Redmond and the booster included about "$200."

"Will Redmond is a kid that was basically taken advantage of by a booster and by an assistant coach," De'Vinner said on the radio show.

Mirando resigned Aug. 19, citing "unforeseen personal issues."

"I've read what's been written but I have nothing to say about that," Mirando told Schad.

Mississippi State has been working with the NCAA to examine a "potential recruiting irregularity" over the past several months, but has declined to provide further details since Mirando resigned.

According to documents provided to the Clarion-Ledger on Aug. 28, an MSU booster was found to have had "impermissible contact" with a recruit and may have engaged in other NCAA rules violations. The school has since disassociated with the booster, Robert Denton Herring.

Wednesday, Yahoo! Sports reported that De'Vinner received a complimentary stay at a Mississippi golf resort while Redmond was on his official recruiting visit. Yahoo! said that Herring arranged for the room, which is a violation of NCAA rules. Yahoo! reported that De'Vinner showed them documentation of the complimentary room, but said that he didn't think any of the Mississippi State coaches knew about it, other than Mirando.

De'Vinner told Yahoo!: "I'm the scapegoat for everything that's going on ... I'm telling the truth."

A Mississippi State spokesman said Wednesday there was no comment beyond the last statement issued by the school.

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