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Who's Ready For A Bit Of Good News?

A fitting scene, no?
A fitting scene, no?

The name Sean Allen may not jump off of the page when you first read it. He went to UM, but never saw the field. Instead, he served as a student manager, and did a lot of volunteer work around the community. If you do recognize the name, it is because you've been paying attention to the Nevin Shapiro scandal, and recognize him as Shaipro's "right hand man." Nicknamed "Pee Wee", Allen did most of Shapiro's money work for him. He cashed checks, delivered money to Shapiro, helped pay off gambling debts. However, in what was perhaps Allen's most important position, he became the only link to the Yahoo! story that would legally have to testify under oath, and as such, became the only link that the NCAA would have to much of Shapiro's wild claims.

According to a story being run the in the Miami New Times, Sean Allen sat down for a three hour interview as part of the bankruptcy proceedings. These are the same proceedings at which the former players would have had to testify, were it not for a settlement by the university and the trustee in charge of recovering the funds. Seeing as Allen is by far the most direct link between Shapiro and Miami, the former players, former coaches, and a few current players, his testimony is vastly important in the NCAA's ongoing investigation. What Sean Allen ended up doing by the end of those three hours, was for better or worse clearing much of the Canes' name, and giving the NCAA almost zero to work with when it comes to levying serious penalties.

To begin with, he stated that he had no knowledge of Shapiro ever giving $10,000 to basketball player DeQuan Jones. Interestingly enough, it was two days after Allen's hearing that Jones was reinstated to the team, so clearly the NCAA is taking what he says to heart. When it comes to the football side of things, Allen confirmed a few portions of Shapiro's story. He confirmed that former recruit and UCF quarterback ate with Shapiro and visited his luxury box. He also said that there was some truth to some big name former players hanging out at a particular club with Shapiro, or hanging out on his yacht. There was, however, no mention of large gifts of cash, cars, or anything like that. He also stated that at one point, Shapiro had given him $3,000 to take two current Miami players and one current Florida Gator to a local strip club. Robert Marve was brought up, but only because Shapiro at one point had offered to front a down payment on a car for Marve, but ended up backing out. Allen said that if the car was ever purchased, he never heard a thing about it.

Allen said that the majority of the cash that he handled was going to pay off Shapiro's gambling debts, not to any players or coaches. He said that while there were some improper things that happened, the majority of the report by Yahoo! was blown way out of proportion by Shapiro. Even Allen himself was not immune to Shapiro's desperate ramblings. When Shapiro's Ponzi scheme started to fall apart, he became increasingly aggressive towards Allen, even having to be separated from him by players. Shapiro said in the Yahoo! report that Allen became the go to guy between him and the players, and played a major part in breaking NCAA rules. Allen's testimony, though, provides a much different picture, one that is a bit more believable than the spew coming from Shapiro's cell over the last couple of months. So rest a bit more easily, Canes fans, because it seems that based on the testimony of the only link the NCAA has between Shapiro and Miami, nothing major happened. What Allen did confirm is not at all severe enough for the NCAA to break the statute of limitations, or at least that's what one would think. Of course, given the NCAA's penchant for making up rules as they go, there's always the chance. As far as the current players, they have all served suspensions, paid back any money that they took, and forfeited a bowl game voluntarily. While we won't know anything for another couple of months, it is looking more and more like the punishment will be minor, perhaps another bowl game and scholarship losses over a few years. Certainly a far, far cry from the death penalty that everyone who loves to hate the Canes were clamoring for.