Via a story on the in-state media cartel’s website al.com, one of the four Auburn players arrested in March and charged with armed robbery and home invasion was being sued by a landlord and had already been evicted once from another rental property.
As the story shows, former teammates Mike Blanc and Mike McNeil were served with eviction papers from their landlord in April 2010. That landlord followed with a lawsuit for unpaid rent. The rental property they were living in is not bad. Liberty Properties has a nice facility with apartments in the $350 to $400 range. Apparently though, neither Mike made sure the rent was paid, and they got kicked to the curb by the landlord.
Mike & Mike promptly “upgraded.” Rather than moving into one of the 475,235 single- and double-wide trailers that dot the Auburn-Opelika metropolitan area, the two moved into a townhome complex called Copper Beech, a swanky, upscale property offering a two-bedroom, fully furnished bachelor pad for about $1,000/month for two persons (PDF).
Check out the picture above. Wish I’d had digs like that when I was in college. I love the crimson table cloth, too.
NCAA rules permit a school to reimburse student-athletes living off of campus. With approval of the athletes’ head coach, players can find their own crib and are eligible to receive what’s known as a “cash-in-lieu” stipend that covers the cost of off-campus housing. They may not receive any other benefits not available to the student body as a whole, such as televisions, stereos and video game consoles.
Mike & Mike likely got somewhere in the neighborhood of $520 each for rent and received reimbursement for other costs charged by the property, totaling some $300/person.
As the parent of a college freshman, I can personally attest to the lack of common sense young men and women of this age display when [ahem] managing their finances. But the athletic department is supposed to have people who help these kids develop life skills as they mature and develop into responsible adults.
Where’d the money go, coach? And why did McNeil think his situation was so desperate that he needed to hit a lick?
Was he hoping to steal enough cash to pay the rent that should have been paid with the cash-in-lieu stipend?