Nevin Shapiro is the former Miami booster who is currently serving a 20-year prison sentence for running a Ponzi scheme. Shapiro has been portrayed as a popular figure in South Beach who lived the high life while partying with athletes and celebrities. The ostentatious man even looked into the possibility of installing a stripper pole in his luxury box for Canes games. Given what we know about him, a story that appeared in the St. Petersburg Times comes as no surprise.
According to their research, Shapiro was the former University of South Florida student responsible for punching a referee during an intramural flag football game, an incident that made headlines in the student newspaper. Shapiro took classes at USF from 1986-1990 and reportedly participated in a well known tournament on campus.
Shapiro, a 5-foot-6 receiver playing for a team called “Public Enemy,” cared so much about flag football, he had jerseys made for the team, complete with logos and names and numbers on the back.
In this particular game in October 1990, Public Enemy lost 15-14 on five field goals to a fraternity team, Sigma Nu. Shapiro was so upset at the officiating, he punched the referee, a student, in the face, prompting his arrest on a misdemeanor count of battery.
Let’s see: Shapiro’s team was named “Public Enemy,” and he made jerseys for the team. Apparently making customized jerseys for an intramural team is a gateway to being a program booster. As far as the Public Enemy name goes, maybe that was just a premonition of things to come.
The St. Petersburg Times also tracked down the quarterback of the team who described Shapiro as a “phenomenal athlete.” Best part? Shapiro supposedly drove a Ford Bronco that was decked out with Miami Hurricanes logos. There’s little doubt this had to have been him. Believe the hype.
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