Tag:Ponzi Scheme
Posted on: August 18, 2011 10:45 am
Edited on: August 18, 2011 10:51 am

Barry Alvarez, son lost $1M in Shapiro scheme

Posted by Chip Patterson

As the dust begins to settle from the initial shock of the Yahoo! investigative report on Miami football, some of the details regarding Nevin Shapiro are beginning to rise to the surface. Among them, who had this well-connected booster involved in his wholesale grocery Ponzi scheme that landed him 20 years behind bars?

One of them is Wisconsin athletic director Barry Alvarez.

Alvarez and his wife, Cynthia, reportedly lost $600,000 by investing in Shapiro's company. Their son, Chad, also claimed he lost $400,000 in the scheme. The Herald reports rumors that the Wisconsin AD may have been introduced to Shapiro by Miami president Donna Shalala, former president at UW.

That rumor was squashed by a Miami attorney who represents the bankruptcy trustee on the case. Court papers instead list one of Shapiro's investors in Naples as the connect between the booster and the Alvarez family.  The athletic director released a statement on Thursday.

“Like dozens of others, I was introduced by a friend several years ago to an investment opportunity with Capital Investments USA, Inc., which was the company being run by Mr. Shapiro," Alvarez said.  "I was introduced to Mr. Shapiro on one occasion over the years, but had no contact with him outside that one introduction. Eventually I became aware that the investment I had made was in jeopardy due to Mr. Shapiro’s legal troubles. At that point, I retained legal counsel in an effort to recoup the money I had invested. That process is still ongoing.”

As Shapiro's status rises with the NCAA investigation, chances are more well-known names will be attached to his $930 million scheme. As someone who spent a lot of money to get to college football's inside circle, he likely had numerous opportunities to run his con on powerful people with money to spend.
Posted on: August 30, 2010 12:19 pm
Edited on: September 1, 2010 2:42 pm

Ponzi scheme head writing book about The "Real" U

Posted By Chip Patterson

With NCAA violations being all the rage these days, it is not surprising as we have begun to see more "insiders" coming forward with information and allegations about their relationships with big name football programs.  The most recent of which is coming from Nevin Shapiro, a man who was an "ardent, intense supporter" of Miami Hurricanes football...until his arrest earlier this year for running a $900 million Ponzi scheme.  

Shapiro has written a first draft of The Real U: 2001 To 2010.  Inside The Eye of the Hurricane from his new home in a New Jersey jail and is currently searching for a publisher.  Word from his attorney is that the tell-all book will detail "major NCAA violations" committed by former players.

Shapiro has said he was close with Jon Beason, Devin Hester, Antrel Rolle, Randy Phillips, Robert Marve, Kyle Wright and others when they played at UM, plus former UM assistant coach/recruiting coordinator Clint Hurtt, now at Louisville.

"This will be a tell-all book from a fan and booster perspective,'' said Shapiro, who did not attend UM. But why write a book that will hurt UM?

"I want to make the average fan aware of what really exists under that uniform,'' he said. "They might be great players, but they're certainly not great people. I'm speaking of no less than 100 former players.'

Shapiro, 41, is angry because "once the players became pros, they turned their back on me. It made me feel like a used friend.'' He was motivated by heartbreak and disappointment on behalf of the university, which I considered to be an extended part of my family.''

The plan, according to the story in the Herald, is to use the profits from the book to pay back investors in the alleged Ponzi scheme.  Shapiro will not be allowed to keep any earnings for himself, though with an estimated $80 million left to shell out, it doesn't sound like the book will be busting him into the black anytime soon.  

Of course the book may never see the light of day, and if so the credibility will be more than questionable.  Hard for fans, much less the NCAA, to take the word of an alleged felon who is writing from jail in hopes to pay off his debts.  However, Shapiro's one-time role in the Miami program appears to be prominent enough to make his story interesting.

The University of Miami reports that Shapiro contributed $150,000 to the athletic program, had his own suite at games, and has a student lounge named in his honor.  He was known by many players as "Little Luke," a tribute to former Miami gift-giver Luther Campbell.  So while his shadiness is undoubted, his view from inside the program may reveal details which show little difference between this decade's Miami and the well-documented days of "The U."  

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com