Early Friday morning, The Lettermen Row reported that Ohio State defensive end and top 2020 NFL Draft prospect Chase Young was being suspended indefinitely. As details trickled out during the day, there were still many questions with one of the biggest being, who did Young receive the money from? Was it from a close family friend or did it come from an NFLPA certified agent? Young attempted to clear the air on Friday with a statement.
“Unfortunately, I won’t be playing this week because of an NCAA eligibility issue. I made a mistake last year by accepting a loan from a family friend I’ve known since the summer before my freshman year at OSU. I repaid it in full last summer and I’m working with the University and NCAA to get back on the field as soon as possible. I want to thank my family, teammates, coaches, and the whole Ohio State community for all the love and support. God bless and go Bucks!
While Young said in his statement that the money in question came from a close family friend, Pro Football Talk reported that the money had come from an NFLPA certified agent.
And now, Pro Football Network Draft Analyst and Insider Tony Pauline can confirm this report. Earlier tonight, three unrelated sources close to the situation have told Pauline that the loan at the center of the Chase Young saga did, in fact, originate from an NFLPA certified agent.
The sources confirmed to Pauline that the money was used to help Young’s father and family attend last year’s Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California. The Columbus Dispatch was the first to report this.
Sources told Pauline the money was not used for anything else – it was solely for the family’s travel expenses. Although none of Pauline’s sources told him the money passed through Young’s hands, this could open a can of worms if it did pass through the player himself. There are also potential ramifications for the agent if the investigation finds him at fault.
As Pro Football Talk noted, The NFLPA prohibits agents from “[p]roviding or offering money or any other thing of value to any player or prospective player to induce or encourage that player to utilize his/her services.” Ohio law provides that agents may not “[l]oan or advance money to an athlete or the family or friends of an athlete in connection with the recruitment or solicitation of the athlete.”
While Young said in his statement that he hopes to get back on the field as soon as possible, this latest development could change that. But for now, this suspension slows down Young’s impressive season. Through eight games, he had logged 13.5 sacks, 15.5 tackles for loss, and five forced fumbles
Young was penciled in as one of the top three draft selections in the coming 2020 NFL Draft and this development is unlikely to change that.
As PFN Draft Editor Ian Cummings noted earlier on Friday, the NFL has shown indifference toward these types of occurrences in the past. Todd Gurley and A.J. Green both accepted money in college, and they were both selected in the top ten of their respective drafts. Young, like Gurley and Green, is an elite talent, and because the circumstances match, the outcome likely will as well.