Now I love Uncle Luke. I don’t know that you will find many who wore the University of Miami uniform who don’t. You know whenever someone starts it off by saying they love somebody, there’s another shoe about to drop. I have to call him out on his recent article written in Miami New Times about super agent Drew Rosenhaus entitled: Drew Rosenhaus is the Gordon Gekko of Sports Agents.
In Luke’s article he references Terrell Owen’s quotes about how Rosenhaus referred him to financial planners who steered him into poor and risky investments that eventually flopped. Luke also calls Rosenhaus out for having never donated a dime to the youth leagues in the inner city of Miami, the place where a great deal of his clients come from (according to Luke). Luke also takes Drew to task on failing to teach his clients fiscal responsibility and stated that Rosenhaus “preys on under privileged African Americans.”
Now hold on! First of all, it’s not Rosenhaus’ responsibility to teach his clients fiscal responsibility. It would be nice but it’s not what he was hired to do. How can we even be sure that Rosenhaus is fiscally responsible? Hell, everyone thought Leigh Steinberg was fiscally responsible didn’t they? Word from bankruptcy court is that he’s not. Rosenhaus was hired to get the most money out of NFL teams for his clients and it seems as though he’s pretty good at that. I never bought a set of steak knives from Luther Campbell but I damned sure bought his albums because he made good music that people wanted to listen to. My point is, Drew Rosenhaus is a NFL agent, not a financial advisor.
Why should Rosenhaus donate money to the youth leagues in the inner city, because Luther Campbell started and runs one? Seems a little self serving doesn’t it? Isn’t this what Luke is accusing Drew of? If Rosenhaus delivers a couple of grand to the Liberty City Optimist League will that make everything he does o.k. with Luke? I don’t know but the article sure comes off like this would be the case. So Rosenhaus should donate to the charities that are near and dear to Luke’s heart? I doubt Luke did any research on what charities Rosenhaus donates to. For all we know, Rosenhaus donates to the United Negro College Fund or to an inner city literacy movement. All Luke knows is that Drew signed players from Miami’s inner city and he did not donate to Luke’s league so that’s a problem. Almost like Luke is charging Rosenhaus a fee for picking up players from the city he lives in.
I sure recall some of Luke’s artists accusing him of taking money from them back in the day. Now one of two things happened. Either Luke fleeced them out of some cash or his artists were frivolous and care free in their money management. When all the money was gone, the artists were looking for someone to blame and Luke was it. I tend to believe the latter as experience would tell me. This seems kind of similar to what T.O. is doing with Rosenhaus. Guess who’s responsibility T.O.’s money is? T.O.’s !!
Athletes getting lazy and using their agent as their all everything when the agent’s prowess is contract negotiation is a mistake. That’s a mistake made by the athlete. The agent is going to be the agent. They make deals and they will make deals with investment firms, insurance firms, real estate firms and they will steer clients to those firms they have deals with. It’s on the athlete to do their research on the firms and make sound decisions on the most important commodity which is their money.
I played on a team with Michael Barrow, Darrin Smith and Jesse Armstead. They all played in the NFL for quite some time but none of them made half of the money T.O. did. All three of them seem to be doing quite well for themselves and they have all been out of the game for quite some time. None them had a privileged up bringing but they were all wise about “their” money. How’d that happen?
Can we stop expecting others to look out for us? Can we grab the bull by the horns and handle our own affairs? I attended a rookie symposium once and there were quite a few in attendance who seemed quite disinterested in the messages being sent their way with regards to women and money. Let’s not cry now and point fingers when the money’s all gone. If T.O. knew nothing at all about money he could have saved himself by asking Drew one simple question, “do you have money in this Alabama casino deal?’. That would have given him quite a bit of answers wouldn’t it?
Drew Rosenhaus is from North Miami and Luke is from Liberty City. Both made a substantial amount of money in their lifetime. Who do you think should teach inner city youth about fiscal responsibility? Luke was not out donating money to pregnant teens or preaching sexual responsibility to the thousands of white teens who purchased his albums in the 80′ and 90′s. However, I sure know there was one thing on a person’s mind when they were listening to the Two Live Crew or Luke’s records. Luther Campbell benefited greatly from record sales amongst white american teens. Did he shell out some money to help them when the loose talk of sex help them get naked? Let’s not be the pot calling the kettle black.
We can start with pushing reading harder in our inner cities. I think Luke could lead the charge. If we open up their minds to reading which leads to learning then teaching them about money after that will stick. I think Luke could lead the charge on that. We can get books and magazines to replace the iPods and Beat headphones every now and then. Luke can lead the charge on that. If the message in the inner city is not coming in the form of a hip hop rap or from some half dressed female, them most aren’t trying to hear it. Reading can go a long way in curing that mentality. Luke can lead the charge on that. If we want to wait around on sports agents to pour their time and effort into these objectives then we can get ready to read about more stories like T.O.’s.
I guess ultimately, Luke on a smaller scale, is doing to Drew what was done to him. When he obtained a certain amount of status as a performer based mostly on another race being his customer, the establishment tried to shut him down. However, this doesn’t make it right. How about if Luke, now that he has assassinated Rosenhaus’ character, collaborate with the agent and direct him to some charities or outlets where he would do well to pay attention? Again, I love me some Luke but I have to call b.s. on this one. What Luke may realize is that he’s more like Rosenhaus than he thought.