News: Jay-Z Under Fire Over Latest Roc Nation Sports Signing, Investigation On Deck
Sunday, May 26, 2013 8:10AM
Days after New York Jets quarterback Geno Smith officially joined forces with Jay-Z's Roc Nation Sports agency, the National Football League Players Association is reportedly set to investigate how Young Hov's team persuaded the rookie.
According to reports, there is an NFL rule which prohibits non-certified associates from being in attendance during the recruitment of a potential client.
The NFL Players Association plans to send a letter of inquiry to Roc Nation Sports agent Kim Miale to find out more information about Jay-Z's actual involvement in trying to get Smith on board. This week, the new Gang Green signal-caller announced that Roc Nation would be his new representative after he fired his agent Jeff Nalley following the NFL Draft. The newly instituted "runner rule" prohibits agents from having associates who aren't NFLPA certified agents in attendance for recruiting meets. Jay-Z is not currently certified and Smith's advisor John Thornton was quoted by CBS Sports this week saying, "I was in those meetings and Jay-Z connected with [Smith] on many levels." Thornton, a former NFL defensive tackle, later tweeted that he was misquoted. (NY Post)
To make matters worse, Smith even boasted about the possibility of signing to Roc Nation by publicly showing off a photo of himself alongside Jay.
Smith himself actually posted a photo of himself and Jay-Z on Instagram during his recruiting process. Miale is technically Smith's new agent. The NFLPA previously sent a letter of inquiry to CAA's Tom Condon after Condon signed Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz, who is using Roc Nation Sports as his marketing representative. Roc Nation and CAA are partners in other sports. In football, that kind of partnership is difficult because of the "runner rule." The union cleared Condon of any wrongdoing in that investigation. (NY Post)
Buzz behind Geno announcing his new relationship with Jay's agency bubbled online earlier in the week.
After weeks of speculation, rookie quarterback Geno Smith announced Wednesday that he has hired Jay-Z's Roc Nation Sports to represent him. Smith, who created national headlines when he fired his original agents after falling out of the first round in last month's draft, hinted that the marketing appeal of Roc Nation Sports was a factor in his decision. Four decades removed from Broadway Joe, the New York Jets have Madison Avenue Geno. "When you talk about being in New York from a standpoint of what they can do in the city, the connections that they have, I think it's a good move," said Smith, claiming Jay-Z's presence wasn't the overriding reason for his selection. (ESPN New York)
Jay, amongst other possible agencies, were attached to Geno signing rumors a few weeks ago.
Jets quarterback Geno Smith could end up having Jay-Z help navigate the concrete jungle where dreams are made of. Per a source with knowledge of the situation, Smith has wrapped up two days of meetings with potential successors to Select Sports Group, the agency Smith hired after completing his college career at West Virginia. Making presentations were Joel Segal, Rick Smith of Priority Sports, Eugene Parker, Fletcher Smith, and Jay-Z's Roc Nation agency. (NBC Sports)