Federal prosecutors ask that Tony Bland, former men’s basketball coach, face jail up to a year in prison after he pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit bribery in January, the Los Angeles Times reported. “He is the rare defendant who has given so much to others — when no one was watching, when he had no need to impress a judge deciding his fate,” Lichtman wrote. Lichtman pointed out Bland’s lack of a criminal record and the option of community service as reasons for probation, rather than prison. In a letter to Ramos, Bland’s attorney Jeffrey Lichtman wrote that Bland’s “life filled with extraordinary good deeds” had been “marred by his criminal actions.” Bland admitted to accepting a $4,100 bribe in July 2017 which was offered by an undercover FBI agent pretending to be an investor. In exchange for the money, Bland agreed to direct USC players to a sports management company run by two men: Christian Dawkins and Munish Sood. Bland pled guilty after striking a deal with prosecutors. Bland is scheduled to be sentenced on May 29. Notably, three of the other men involved in the FBI investigation — Dawkins, former Adidas employee Merl Code, and Adidas employee Jim Gatto — were sentenced to between six and nine months each, although they were involved with much higher sums of money. In a memorandum to Judge Edgardo Ramos, who is in charge of the case, prosecutors wrote that Bland may have received a substantially larger amount of money in bribes if they had not stepped in. It also emphasized Bland’s self-interest in the crime, according to the Los Angeles Times. “Instead of being a role model for these students, the defendant’s conduct demonstrated a blatant disregard for not just the rules, but also his students’ own well-being, as he made efforts to steer them to Dawkins, an inexperienced and underqualified athlete-advisor with a track record of alleged fraud and partners who neither knew anything about,” the prosecutors wrote.
The coaching clinic was a purely technical football session was organized to aid knowledge transfer between Star lagerâ€™s foreign football club partners and the Nigerian professional football league to advance the quality of Nigerian football.While giving a closing remark, The Head, Government Relations, Nigerian Breweries, Vivian Ikem said; â€œWe are happy about the impact we have been able to make in the past few days. Football is important to us as a brand and to our consumers. We are delighted to have been a part of the coaching clinic and we are sure the coaches have been able to learn new skills. We particularly thank the coaches for giving us their time during the training sessions as well as the NPFL who helped make this activity a successâ€.The Chairman of the League Management Company, Shehu Dikko, also stated that:“It’s been a pleasure to host the coaches and I have been impressed with the skills and techniques that have been exchanged in the course of the workshop. Each session was tailor-made to suit the topics at hand. We are really encouraged to do more capacity building clinics for the Nigerian League.â€The Star lager- NPFL partnership which was signed in 2016 has since recorded a number of exchanges between the two parties which includes the Star Lager Beerâ€™s fan park which has visited a number of stadia across the country alongside the NPFL, further engaging with the fansâ€™ enthusiasm in support of the progress for Nigerian football. Star Lager is the official beer partner of the Nigerian Professional Football League (NPFL).Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram Over the course of the week, Star Lager Beer brought over 30 coaches to Abuja for a Knowledge exchange workshop facilitated between the brand two partners, Arsenal and the Nigerian Professional football League. The workshop was aimed at sharing and transferring of knowledge between the two parties.The workshop which, is a product of Starâ€™s Partnership with the NPFL, held at the National stadium in Abuja and it saw an exchange of coaching techniques and methodology between the Arsenal and NPFL personnel. The topics from the training ranged from both practical and theoretical and it also included using the Abuja FC 19-plus football team as part of the workshop practical.