- Michael Rothstein, ESPN Staff Writer
- 0 Shares
ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- Rumeal Robinson's 1989 Michigan NCAA championship ring is apparently up for sale on eBay with a rather large asking price: $89,899.89.
Robinson, who made two game-winning free throws in overtime of the 1989 NCAA final against Seton Hall to give the Wolverines their only basketball championship, is in federal prison in Louisiana after being convicted of bank bribery, wire fraud and conspiracy to commit bank fraud. He was sentenced to 78 months in 2011.
Yee Mar, a Kansas-based ring collector, said he has had the ring for "a couple of years" after being approached by a friend of Robinson's asking if he was interested in the ring. He did research, decided it was authentic and purchased it.
"There's absolutely no question it's real," Mar said Monday. "The ring has every indication it's from Balfour, has the 'LBG10K' on it, has the stampings of the scores on it.
"You can call Balfour and verify it."
ESPN.com left a message with Balfour on Monday afternoon, but it was not immediately returned.
Mark Hughes, a captain on the 1989 team, has not spoken with Robinson in years. When Hughes was sent pictures of the ring in the eBay auction ad Monday by a reporter looking for verification, he said it looked a lot like his ring.
"Oh boy. I'll tell you what, it does look like it," Hughes said. "Yeah, I mean, yeah. Wow.
"It does. I can't say for sure 100 percent, but yeah."
Hughes, director of pro player personnel for the New York Knicks, said he was surprised when he heard Robinson's ring might be up for sale.
"I was like, 'What?' I hadn't heard that at all," Hughes said. "You look at the situation he's in, it's not hard to put two and two together if that is the case.
"I don't know if it's true or not. It's a little bit surprising, a little shocking."
Why would Mar sell it now? Initially, he said he was going to wait until next year, the 25th anniversary of Michigan's title. But when the Wolverines made a Final Four run this year, he decided to put it up for auction. Mar said the asking price has to do with the year of Michigan's championship -- 1989 -- and that he doesn't expect to pull in that amount for the ring. He said he plans to give some of the winning bid to charity.
"Since Michigan was doing so well, I thought why not get some exposure for it?" Mar said. "Just throw it on eBay and see how well it does."