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Posted: Friday February 27, 2009 3:41PM; Updated: Friday February 27, 2009 3:41PM

NCAA looks into role of top-recruit Brown's mentor

Story Highlights

An NCAA rep spoke with Colby Duranleau about his involvement with Brian Butler

Butler, who hasn't been contacted by the NCAA, also is a mentor for Bryce Brown

Duranleau said his relationship with Butler ended negatively but wouldn't elaborate

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A representative from the NCAA's amateurism certification staff was in Wichita, Kan., on Friday morning to talk with former Wichita (Kan.) Northwest offensive lineman Colby Duranleau about his involvement with Brian Butler, who trains and advises top high school football prospects in Kansas.

Butler is the mentor/advisor to running back Bryce Brown, the nation's top high school prospect in the class of 2009. Butler also helped Brown's older brother, Arthur Brown, last season.

Butler works with numerous other high school prospects in the Wichita area through his Potential Players program, training them and helping promote them to college programs.

At one time, Duranleau, a two-star prospect who signed with Coffeyville (Kan.) Community College earlier this month after turning down offers from Southern Illinois and Missouri State, said he was part of that program.

Duranleau met with Mike DeCesare, the assistant director of the NCAA's amateurism certification staff, for about an hour this morning in his home with his mother, Karen Powell, and Weston Schartz, his high school coach.

"I can't really say what we talked about," Duranleau said. "I guess he just really wanted to talk to me about Brian Butler. That's about the only thing I can say.

"My relationship with Brian started out positive and ended up kind of negative. I can't elaborate why it turned negative. That's kind of one of the things that we talked about."

Butler said the NCAA has not talked with him.

"I have no clue why they would want to talk to me, to be honest," he said. "I just think when you're dealing with top kids, people just wonder what's going on, wondering if I'm doing something wrong.

"I can tell you that they have not talked to me one time. I'd welcome them to look into everything I do because it is 100 percent legit and is for the best interest of the kids I work with and train. I'd cooperate with them and give them any bit of information they would want."

Butler also said Duranleau was a prospect, "I was still helping after he stopped training with me. When I started charging for training and the program, I brought every parent in and told them all that it was going to be a charge for the training. I told them it was whatever they could afford, and at that time Colby started to stop training."

Schartz, one of the top high school coaches in Wichita, said he didn't think the meeting with the NCAA was negative.

"They asked us not to say anything, but I can tell you this: I don't think they were out to get anybody," Schartz said. "I didn't feel that way at all. The only reason I was there was because they were interviewing Colby and he asked me to be there.

"They didn't ask me to be there. I was just there to support Colby. I'd go to church if he asked me. But I didn't think it was a negative at all."

The NCAA wouldn't comment on the specific investigation, but its amateurism certification office was created in 2007 to determine the amateur status of domestic and international freshman and transfer prospective student-athletes initially enrolling at NCAA Division I schools.

The amateurism certification section is a different department from NCAA's enforcement section, which often examines the recruitment of high-profile athletes.

 
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