September 12, 2012 12:02:48 AM
STARKVILLE - The 7-on-7 summer team coach of Mississippi State University freshman defensive back Will Redmond said he saw improper benefits occur during the recruitment of the four-star prospect.
Byron De'Vinner, who has been interviewed by NCAA investigators regarding the investigations into multiple players in Memphis on his 7-on-7 team, called into the Head to Head sports radio show hosted by Richard Cross and Matt Wyatt unprompted Tuesday to "clear his name...that had been dragged through the mud".
"Will Redmond was a kid that was basically taken advantage of by a booster and by an assistant coach," De'Vinner said on the radio show. "Did I physically see inappropriate benefits? Yes, I did."
When contacted by The Dispatch after his interview on the radio program, D'Vinner declined to answer any further questions at this time. De'Vinner said during hi radio interview he interviewed for a job in the athletics department at MSU in January, and spoken to the school's athletic compliance department during the investigation.
The Dispatch previous reported sources had confirmed the investigation, at least in part, involves an automobile purchase for Redmond. The Ford Mustang was purchased before Redmond signed with MSU this February from a used car dealership in his hometown of Memphis, Tenn.
On the Head to Head radio show, De'Vinner denied knowing anything about the purchase of a car on his Tuesday afternoon.
"I've seen (it reported) where he got a 2010 Mustang, that's not to be true," De'Vinner said. "Did the booster buy him a Mustang? No, the booster didn't buy him a Mustang. I saw a handshake for $100 to $200, I witnessed that."
De'Vinner said he saw the booster, who MSU officials have sent a written correspondence to in order to distance themselves from in the future, provide Redmond with other items during his recruiting that would be considered violations according to NCAA rules.
"I saw where the booster sent him a jacket through the mail and you know, things of that nature," De'Vinner said. "He lined up an official visit and lined up other things inappropriately."
De'Vinner said on the radio show that former MSU receivers coach Angelo Mirando "was aware" of the improper benefits. De'Vinner said he was introduced to Mirando in June 2011 and later Mirando "sent him a message on Facebook, gave me his number to call him".
MSU announced Mirando's replacement as wide receivers coach, less than four days after 26-year-old resigned Sunday evening due to what school officials called personal reasons, in the form of former University of Minnesota head coach Tim Brewster.
A report from ESPN.com national college football reporter Joe Schad said Mirando is under investigation for the recruitment of at least one player. Schad tweeted late Tuesday evening that he'd reached Mirando for comment but only provided this statement to ESPN.com
"I've read what's been written but I have nothing to say about that."
Redmond's high school coach Marcus Wimberly told ESPN.com in August that Redmond was the subject of an NCAA interview earlier this year.
All of the Dispatch MSU Sports Blog readers: feel free to follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/matthewcstevens for up-to-date Mississippi State coverage.
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