Report: Former Terp Diamond Stone's name linked to FBI probe into improper payments from agent.
Former Maryland men’s basketball player Diamond Stone’s name appears on a document that alleges he received money from an agent while he was in college, according to a report by Yahoo Sports.
Stone, who played for the Terps during the 2015-16 season before turning pro, received $14,303, according to documents viewed and published Friday by Yahoo Sports. The money came from the agency owned by longtime NBA agent Andy Miller. The documents are part of an FBI investigation into illegal payments to numerous colleges and players.
In a statement released Friday afternoon, Maryland men’s basketball coach Mark Turgeon denied any knowledge of a payment to Stone, who remains the highest-rated recruit the Terps have signed since Turgeon took over the program in 2011 following the retirement of Hall of Fame coach Gary Williams.
"Late last night we were alerted of a report associating one of our former student-athletes with an agent. We are extremely disappointed, and we will fully cooperate with any investigation,” Turgeon said.
“I do not have a relationship with Andy Miller or anyone from his agency, and at no time have I ever had a conversation with Andy Miller or his agency regarding any Maryland basketball player. We remain steadfast in upholding a program of integrity that reflects the values of our University community."
Efforts to reach Stone and his family for comment were unsuccessful.
Considered one of the top 10 high school players in the country when he signed with Maryland, Stone’s stock dropped dramatically toward the end of his freshman year and then more after he went to the NBA’s combine in the spring of 2016.
Diamond Stone played one season, 2015-16, at Maryland before leaving for the NBA Draft. He had some highlights for the Terps, but wasn't the dominant center he was supposed to be as a Top 10 national recruit.
By The Baltimore Sun
Feb 23, 2018 | 11:50 AM
Stone was eventually selected 40th overall by the New Orleans Pelicans and was traded to the Los Angeles Clippers on the night of the draft. As happened with many players named in the report, Stone signed with a different agency, Tanner Sports in Northern Virginia.
According to Yahoo Sports, Miller and his agency paid many college and high school stars — including DeMatha star Markelle Fultz, who played a year at Washington and was the No. 1 pick of the Philadelphia 76ers last June.
Yahoo reported that former North Carolina State star Dennis Smith received $43,500 in payments and another $73,500 in loans that the agency could recoup if he didn't become an ASM client.
Other former and current stars mentioned in the Yahoo report include Michigan State sophomore Miles Bridges. There were 25 players at 20 schools whose names came up on the spreadsheets viewed by Yahoo Sports.
It’s unclear when or if the NCAA would penalize any college programs linked to the FBI investigation.
On Friday, NCAA President Mark Emmert said in a statement about the Yahoo report, “These allegations, if true, point to systematic failures that must be fixed and fixed now if we want college sports in America. Simply put, people who engage in this kind of behavior have no place in college sports. They are an affront to all those who play by the rules.”
Stone is now playing in the NBA’s G-League. He spent most of his rookie season in the NBA’s developmental league, appearing in just six games with the Clippers before being traded to the Atlanta Hawks last year.
After appearing with the Hawks’ summer league team, Stone was waived again and signed with the Windy City Bulls, who subsequently traded him to the Salt Lake City Stars for a later third-round G-League pick and the rights to Henry Sims (Mount Saint Joseph), who is playing in Europe.
According to a Maryland team spokesman, Turgeon would not have any further comment until after Saturday’s home game against No. 17 Michigan. Media availability scheduled for Friday afternoon in advance of the team’s senior day was canceled.