De'Vinner details recruiting allegations

By Brad Locke/NEMS Daily Journal

A seven-on-seven coach in Nashville has revealed more details about what he claims to know regarding the actions of a former Mississippi State booster.
Byron De’Vinner has spoken with several media outlets the past two days about the NCAA’s investigation into what MSU has termed “a potential recruiting irregularity” involving a rogue booster.
He told the Daily Journal on Wednesday that MSU freshman Will Redmond was offered $6,000 by Robert Denton Herring – who was disassociated by MSU in July for impermissible contact with a prospect – to “shut down” his recruitment and sign with the Bulldogs.
He first offered up that detail earlier Wednesday on a Tennessee radio station. De’Vinner had not mentioned it the day before when interviewed by Head to Head Radio, a statewide Mississippi sports talk show and the first outlet with which he spoke at length about the matter.
He did tell Head to Head that Herring had given Redmond some money at the South Carolina-MSU game last October. Yahoo! Sports reported the same on Wednesday.
De’Vinner has also spoken with the Commercial Appeal in Memphis, the Clarion-Ledger in Jackson and Yahoo! Sports.
De’Vinner told the Journal he was unsure whether Redmond accepted Herring’s $6,000 offer.
“From my experience, Will never took it,” he said. “That’s my understanding, he didn’t. I can’t say if he did or didn’t, because I didn’t see it.”
He told Yahoo! Sports that Herring committed multiple NCAA violations while trying to convince Redmond to sign with MSU. De’Vinner revealed several details that he hadn’t mentioned to Head to Head, like the fact that Herring paid for his meals and lodging during a visit to Starkville.
The coach also alleged to Yahoo! that during Redmond’s official visit in mid-January, the prospect told him, “I got to get with Denton, I need some more money.”
De’Vinner said several recruiting violations were committed during that weekend visit.
He told the Tennessee radio station that another BCS school offered Redmond $60,000 to sign with them.
He told the Journal that Angelo Mirando, the former MSU assistant coach who resigned on Aug. 19 due to “unforeseen personal issues,” was fully aware of Herring’s actions, but that no other MSU football staff members were. De’Vinner said he didn’t know whether Mirando condoned Herring’s actions.
The NCAA has for months been investigating the actions of Mirando and Herring, and it’s been looking into other possible recruiting violations in the Memphis area.
It recently ruled Auburn freshman Jovon Robinson ineligible because of an altered high school transcript.
De’Vinner told the Journal that Herring talked to him a couple of weeks ago in an effort to keep him quiet.
“He wanted me to be quiet and (said) it’ll go away. I said, ‘No, I’m not being quiet. It’s not going to go away.’”
MSU coach Dan Mullen declined to comment on the story on Wednesday.
“The NCAA is doing their work on that, and we’re not commenting on any of that stuff at this time,” he said.
Croom’s story
ESPNU has set a date and time for its documentary on former MSU football coach Sylvester Croom. The latest installment of the SEC “Storied” series will air on Sept. 25 at 6 p.m.
The documentary focuses on Croom being the first black head football coach in the SEC. It’s directed by Johnson McKelvy, who was the senior producer for “Rhythm in the Rope,” which won a Sports Emmy for outstanding sports documentary.
It’s narrated by actor Terrence Howard, who played a key supporting character in “Iron Man.” The Croom film includes interviews with family and colleagues, including SEC commissioner Mike Slive, former MSU athletics director Larry Templeton, and former NFL coach Tony Dungy.
Banks, Green honored
Cornerback Johnthan Banks and tight end Marcus Green both earned weekly national honors Wednesday.
Banks was named the defensive back of the week by the Jim Thorpe Association after making two interceptions in Saturday’s 28-10 win over Auburn. Green, who caught two touchdown passes, was named the John Mackey tight end of the week by the Nassau County Sports Commission.
brad.locke@journalinc.com