Williams says he gave the money in an envelope to Ferrell to give to Jackson. Jackson denies having received any payments, but Ferrell says he was indeed given an envelope by Williams that apparently contained cash. "Williams said it was money," Ferrell says. "He asked me to give it to Sean. It felt like a decent amount of change. I didn't open the envelope. I just gave it to Sean." Ferrell calls Williams a gofer for Cebrun and Bey and says that Williams came to the dorm numerous times to deliver money to several players other than Jackson but that he didn't receive any himself. However, Williams recalls giving Ferrell $100 on one occasion in his dormitory room.
At the urging of Bey and Cebrun, Endicott went to Tallahassee on Monday, Nov. 29, and gave his pitch to a number of the players the two men had recruited. By all accounts Endicott made no effort to sign players to contracts and offered none of them money or gifts.
"That was the last time I saw them," says Sawyer, referring to Bey and Cebrun. "Raul called me one time and said there was a little problem. He said he and Coach Nate weren't on a stable level anymore, and he couldn't trust Coach Nate. I guess things just exploded."
A mysterious collection of documents about Cebrun lit the fuse. A few days before the Orange Bowl, somebody sent copies of a damning, 50-page, mostly handwritten packet to Bey, Endicott and Lockhart. Packets were also addressed to several Florida State players, although it isn't clear that any of them received one. In a rambling fashion, the packet detailed, among other things, a felony conviction for grand theft in California in 1976. Also enclosed was a letter that accused Cebrun of "attempting to con, abuse, misuse, manipulate and corrupt" college athletes.
Lockhart read the packet and broke off her relationship with Cebrun. Bey came to the conclusion that he'd been conned by Cebrun. "He gains your trust and then just goes into your pocket as deep as he can for as long as he can," he says. "Then he runs out of town and moves on to the next guy. After we got that file, we had our lawyer write him and tell him we severed all ties to him."
For whatever reason, most of the Florida State players soured on Cebrun too, and gave him a wide berth when he showed up at the Orange Bowl. In the end Bey and Cebrun had nothing to show for their efforts. Knox eventually signed with Spectrum Management, but both he and Harrison say that Cebrun had nothing to do with the signing. No Florida State player signed with Endicott. For all of Bey's expenditures, no Seminole player will promote his hoped-for apparel line.
But the saga isn't over. Beyond the apparent NCAA rules infractions, laws may have been broken. In Florida, individuals other than members of the Florida bar who either directly or indirectly recruit college athletes must register with the state as sports agents or face possible felony charges—and the two Beys, Cebrun, Endicott, Pagan and Williams aren't registered or licensed to practice law in the state.
Everybody emerges from this affair with a black eye—the school, the players, the coaches, the agents and, once again, college sports, in which such unsavory conduct is all too common.
Florida State can find solace only in the fact that the player who was Cebrun's and Bey's No. 1 target, Charlie Ward, resisted their blandishments. "They came knocking on my door, but I didn't deal with any of them," Ward told SI last week. Of his teammates who have been implicated in the scandal, Ward said sadly, "Evidently a lot of these guys have lied, and it's coming out. They knew what they were getting into. People should be responsible for all their actions. In the end, the truth always comes out."