During yesterday's game against Syracuse, Kansas State had a noticeable part of their squad missing: senior forward and second-leading scorer, Jamar Samuels. On Friday, K-State coach Frank Martin and athletic director John Currie found out that Samuels wouldn't be able to play in the team's third round contest of the NCAA Tournament because of an eligibility issue.    

Following the Wildcats' loss to the Orange, coach Martin was nearly brought to tears during the team's press conference at the thought of how Samuels' collegiate career came to an end. Now that the dust has settled, we are beginning to learn more about what led to the senior forward's sudden ineligibility. According to two sources within the athletic department, Jamar received a $200 wire transfer from his former coach and head of the DC Assault AAU basketball program, Curtis Malone, on Monday in Manhattan.

While the rulebook does state that "NCAA student-athletes are not allowed to accept money or gifts from anyone who is not considered a friend or family member," is there any exception for players that need some assistance in order to survive? When CBSSports.com spoke with Malone about the situation, he vehemently defended his actions by making one shocking revelation:

"If I knew it and wanted to hide it, I would have done it differently,” Malone said. “The kid’s family doesn’t have anything and he called me for money to eat. The kid didn’t do anything wrong. To be honest, I didn’t think I did anything wrong, either. If a kid who plays for me needs money to eat, I’m going to help them.”
If Malone's story does turn out to be the truth, the NCAA won't need to look far to see why pay-for-play actually makes sense.  

[via Kansas City Star]

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