Kansas State held out Jamar Samuels from its NCAA Tournament game against Syracuse Saturday because of an eligibility issue. Samuels reportedly accepted a $200 wire transfer from his AAU coach.
Jeff Goodman of CBS Sports spoke with Curtis Malone, Samuels’ former AAU coach with DC Assault, who confirmed he transferred the money to his former player. Malone says the money was necessary.
“It’s the same way when he played with DC Assault on road trips,” Malone told Austin Meek of The Topeka Capital-Journal. “When he didn’t have money to eat, he ate.”
“There hasn’t been anything extravagant or large lumps,” Malone said. “I don’t just give a kid money …”
Malone indicated to reporters he didn’t think what he did was breaking rules because of his relationship with Samuels’ family. Maybe he figured it was like an uncle giving his nephew some money to get by while in college.
Regardless, the NCAA doesn’t mess around when it comes to players receiving money, so Kansas State took precautions and sat him. They lost to Syracuse 75-59, meaning Samuels’ last collegiate game was a 1-point effort against Southern Miss. on Thursday. That’s a pretty crappy way to have his college career end, but he should have known better. I’m also not buying the “he needed to eat” excuse. Athletes have meals provided for them by the school when they’re on campus and on the road for games.