Naturally the question emerges from fans when they see stuff belonging to former U-M players up on eBay: How could (or how dare?) a Wolverine player do that? As I’ve stated on these pages again and again, we usually don’t know the circumstances of how or why something ends up for sale so I’d rather not speculate on the reason. And we know, of course, that property of former athletes has value and thus is sought after—sometimes by deviants.
Take the case of former footballer Jerry Mader. He earned 3 letters in football and played on Bump Elliott’s 1964 Big Ten & 1965 Rose Bowl championship squad. When his ‘64 Rose Bowl ring showed up on eBay recently he sent this note to his teammates explaining what happened..along with the rosy conclusion. Thanks to Mader for sharing a copy:
For those of you who are concerned about my Rose Bowl being put up for sale on EBay, please understand that I’m not destitute and in need of extra cash. Of course, a little extra cash will always help but I wouldn’t mortgage my past efforts and experience as a member of the 1965 Rose Bowl Team! I especially appreciate the close relationships I have with many of you.
As background, my ring was stolen from the Med- Sport locker room at Domino Farms in mid-December 2006 when I was rehabbing 2 knee surgeries and a wrist surgery. I notice that many of us are experiencing these physical breakdowns from those football days of long ago. I’m OK with that because I learned much and of course, I need the scholarship. At that time, I filed a police report with the U of M Campus Police and then the issue went dormant. Early July of this year I received an email from an unnamed person asking me if I would be interested in purchasing my ring from him since he bought it in an auction. We exchanged several email and of course I told him that the ring was stolen. I attempted to draw him into a conversation but the email ended abruptly when it appeared that I would send him $ 8,000 for my ring.
A couple of weeks ago he placed the Ring on EBay with my bio. He might of done this because I told him the Ring would be more valuable if my bio accompanied it. Well, when several of you informed me that my Ring was up for sale on EBay, I called the Sheriff’s Office and a very nice junior detective researched my case and forwarded my past police report and the EBay information to the Campus Police.
Yesterday, I received a phone call from Detective [name removed] of the Campus Police, informing that there division organized a sting operation and enticed the perpetrator to travel from Chicago to Ann Arbor to buy my Ring plus another ring (2003 Rose Bowl). The sting involved 9 officers and was very well thought out and creative.
The bottom line is my Ring has been recovered and the perpetrator is being held on 2 felonies, selling stolen goods and extortion! The Detective is a very good guy and he was pleased to point out that this creep in an MSU grad!
Thank you for your concern. I [was] lucky to have the opportunities back play football and go to Michigan and I continue to be blessed today by an awesome God.
Punish the Spartan deviant!
So here’s another case. Up on eBay right now, a pile memorabilia and awards that belonged former back Jon Vaughn. [HT: Brian at mgoblog and mgo-reader Joe]. The stuff ranges from his high school to his NFL days:
John, err, Jon Vaughn won this for leading the league in kickoff return yards as a member of the Patriots:
Vaughn is best known around these parts for his 1990 season, and in particular his ridiculous start to that year, with over 200 against Notre Dame and UCLA:
This isn’t the first time we’ve seen something of Vaughn’s up on eBay. Here’s a post from 2010 featuring his “Hustler” award from 1990 after the ND game.
Again, I don’t know the circumstances of why Vaughn’s stuff is on eBay and won’t speculate unless I have some better info.
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