AUSTIN, Texas (AP) – The older brother of Texas basketball recruit Mo Bamba says Bamba took improper gifts and money from a Detroit financial adviser that would make him ineligible to play in college.
Ibrahim Johnson posted a rambling, profanity-laced, 20-minute Facebook video Wednesday, accusing adviser Greer Love of giving Bamba money and gifts. Love previously worked in New York and was involved in youth sports in Harlem, where he got to know Bamba’s family.
Love told 247Sports Bamba asked him to help manage his recruitment. Love says he consulted with schools to ensure he wasn’t breaking rules and wouldn’t jeopardize Bamba’s eligibility.
Texas officials said Bamba’s amateur status had previously been reviewed by the NCAA and that he’s been cleared to play, but the school did not release a statement from Bamba or address any specifics in the brother’s video. Bamba is one of the top incoming players in the country next season.
“We’re aware of the recent social media post regarding our men’s basketball student-athlete Mohamed Bamba,” the Longhorns said. “As is usual practice by the NCAA, Mo’s amateur status was previously reviewed and final certified by the NCAA Eligibility Center. The NCAA has not informed us of any pending issues or eligibility concerns at this time regarding Mo. If there are further questions, we certainly will cooperate with the NCAA to the fullest.”
Love did not respond to requests for comment from The Associated Press. NCAA spokesman Chris Radford said the NCAA is “aware of the situation and we are working with the school,” but declined further comment.
A 6-foot-11 forward, Bamba is considered the gem of coach Shaka Smart’s incoming class and a player who could make a huge impact on a program that went 11-22 last season. He fills a critical need for the Longhorns after center Jarrett Allen was drafted by the NBA’s Brooklyn Nets. Bamba picked Texas over Kentucky, Michigan and Duke.
The allegations leveled by Johnson do not directly involve the Longhorns, but focus on Bamba’s relationship with Love. Johnson said Love gave his brother $200 a week, paid credit card bills and paid for a trip to California.
Johnson, a former Division II player at the University of Montevallo in Alabama, also complained of a falling out with his brother and said Bamba wouldn’t help him get into graduate school at Texas.
Johnson said he reported his allegations of improper payments and benefits to the NCAA and was scheduled to meet with NCAA officials soon.
“He’s not going to play” in college, Johnson said of his brother.
Love’s response reported by 247Sports didn’t address the specific allegations raised by Johnson.
“Doing things the right way has been our top priority since day one,” Love said. “Mo’s got way too much to lose to take any chances on anything even remotely impermissible. With my nine-year, pre-existing relationship on the line with Mo personally, let alone his college eligibility, I took several additional measures to ensure that Mo was fully compliant every step of the way.”
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