The “Sharks” Are Out There

A visit with one of our new clients again uncovered that players continue to be “duped” by many of the so-called financial advisors (we will call them sharks) in the business.  These sharks have unsuspecting collegiate players signing documents under false pretenses in order to get players cash in their pockets as soon as possible.

Many rookie drafted players will soon come into large sums of cash as the continued onslaught of NFL rookie contracts continues over the next one and one-half months leading up to training camp. The fast-paced hustle and bustle of some of these sharks has young athletes and their family’s minds in a tail spin.   For example, these young men will soon come into riches (notice I said riches not wealth) beyond their wildest dreams and many of the sharks continue to advise these young men to take out mortgages on homes and cars they have no reason purchasing in their first year.  A few years ago there was a player who was drafted by an NFL teams in the third round. He received a sizeable signing bonus and was well on his way to fulfilling his dreams. There was a shark who advised him to purchase a home, because everyone in the player’s management team, including his agent, said he would be with the team who drafted him for many years to come.  Unfortunately, after a couple of years, there was a coaching change and this player no longer fit in the plans of the current head coaching regime and was released.  Fully expecting to catch on with another NFL team, he was singed within a few months but did not make that team’s final roster cuts. After bouncing around to one more team later that season, he failed to make a permanent impression with any other team.  Long story short, he has not played in the NFL since and to this day is and is still perplexed how quickly his NFL career came to a halt. With virtually all of his money gone from his NFL playing days, his agent no longer calls him, the shark has vanished from his life, and most of his NFL attained relationships have deteriorated.

Players think they are in control of their destiny once they enter the world of professional sports, but little do they know, there are many factors well outside their control that play significant roles in their ultimate fate.  It is the responsibility of the sharks, and the like, to make sure the player’s best interest are at hand, but far too many times the personal gain and business greed sharks causes them to lose sight of their clients’ best interest, substituting that with their own self-interest. As a result, the player is the one who ultimately loses in the end, and the shark is off to snare his next victim in a world of deception and deceit, because most players and their families do not have the resources our understanding of what questions to ask to make sure their interest are protected.

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