Luther Davis #96 of the Alabama Crimson Tide celebrates after winning the Citi BCS National Championship game over the Texas Longhorns at the Rose Bowl on January 7, 2010 in Pasadena, California. The Crimson Tide defeated the Longhorns 37-21. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
A Yahoo! Sports investigation alleges that former Alabama defensive lineman Luther Davis served as intermediary between agents and financial advisers to compensate five SEC football players while they were still active college athletes. Among those players identified is former Alabama standout D.J. Fluker, a San Diego Chargers rookie offensive lineman who was a key player on Alabama's 2012 BCS National Championship team.
The benefits did not come from individuals directly associated with the schools, the report says. Two other current NFL players - former Tennessee quarterback Tyler Bray and former Mississippi State defensive tackle Fletcher Cox - were also reported as accepting benefits in the report.
Former Mississippi State wideout Chad Bumphis, who was recently released by the Miami Dolphins, and current Tennessee senior defensive end Maurice Couch also allegedly broke rules.
Yahoo Sports! cited text message records, Western Union fund transfers, banking statements and flight receipts to link Davis to the five athletes. Three NFL agents - Andy Simms, Peter Schaffer and John Phillips - and three financial advisers - Jason Jernigan, Mike Rowan and Hodge Brahmbhatt engaged Davis in transactions totaling $45,550, according to the report. Simms, Schaffer, Phillips and Rowan confirmed payments to Davis, but said they did not know that he was passing funds along to the college players.
The alleged transactions would violate NCAA Bylaw 18.104.22.168, which prohibits college athletes from receiving benefits from agents or marketing representatives. They could also have an effect on Alabama's most recent national championship. USC vacated two BCS title appearances, including one championship, following penalties related to extra benefits received by former tailback Reggie Bush during his career with the Trojans.
Fluker was an All-American last season and a starter at offensive tackle on the Crimson Tide's 2012 BCS national championship team. Both Tennessee and Mississippi State are on probation until the summer of 2015 for previous rules violations.
The report also includes an itinerary for a July, 2012 recruiting trip involving Fluker, Nashville-based agent Isaac Conner and two Nashville attorneys Ronald Stewart and Andre Johnson that also includes the mention of "E. Stinson", current Alabama senior defensive end Ed Stinson, list of clients in a courtesy car. Conner told Yahoo Sports! that Stinson was not present, and that his agency had not paid Davis nor any other players.