Tony Brooks received an “improper inducement” from Notre Dame representatives while the Irish were attempting to enroll the running back, former Oklahoma Coach Barry Switzer says.
In his newly released book, “Bootlegger’s Boy,” Switzer says the unidentified Notre Dame representatives gave Brooks a job paying $13.50 an hour immediately after he signed a letter of intent with the Irish in 1987.
Brooks and Notre Dame Coach Lou Holtz deny the allegations.
“It was obviously an inducement,” Switzer told the Chicago Tribune in today’s editions. “Schools can talk about summer jobs (after a player’s freshman year), but nobody at Oklahoma was making that kind of money. They violated NCAA legislation.”
Several scandals, including NCAA rules violations within his program, forced Switzer to resign before the 1989 season. Switzer contests most of the NCAA charges in his book.
Brooks, who was recruited by Oklahoma, said he chose Notre Dame for academic reasons. “Nobody connected with Notre Dame made any illegal offers to me,” he said. “It’s absurd.”
Switzer said he believes Holtz and his coaching staff knew nothing about the arrangement. Under NCAA rules, though, a school can be held responsible for the actions of alumni and boosters.
“If the allegations were true, it would come as a shock,” Holtz said. “Otherwise, I have nothing to say.”
Switzer says Brooks asked at the time whether Oklahoma could match the promises offered by Notre Dame.
“The kid had his hand out. He was asking for certain things,” Switzer said. “He said he needed to work right away.”