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Jeweler suing Lance Thomas has no interest in talking to NCAA

Sep 15, 2012, 11:21 AM EDT

lance thomas AP

The jeweler suing former Duke forward Lance Thomas isn’t looking to be of any help to the NCAA, according to his lawyer, the Associated Press is reporting.

Thomas bought close to $100,000 worth of jewelry from the New York-based man during his time with Duke, allegedly still owing him close to $68,000. But, reportedly because of the pending litigation, the NCAA won’t be getting much from the jeweler.

“My client has no interest in going beyond the merchandise Mr. Thomas took and didn’t pay for,” his attorney, Mike Bowers, said this week.

Thomas reportedly put $30,000 down toward the purchase of the jewelry, then being extended $67,800 in credit. The purchase took place on Dec. 21, 2009, right in the middle of Duke’s 2009-10 championship season.

The Associated Press details the situation that concerns the NCAA:

NCAA rules prohibit athletes from receiving benefits that aren’t available to the student body as a whole. If a violation of that kind is found, a school could be forced to give up a championship in which the athlete competed.

Thomas averaged 4.8 points and 4.8 rebounds per game during that season, appearing in 40 games for the Blue Devils.

The difficulty for the NCAA, though, comes in trying to attain information because the NCAA has no binding power that compels non-school officials or personnel from cooperating with the investigation, thus the reason they could run into a dead end with Thomas’ jeweler.

The inquiry is ongoing.

Daniel Martin is a writer and editor at, covering St. John’s. You can find him on Twitter:@DanielJMartin_

  1. jthammerstix - Sep 15, 2012 at 12:47 PM

    Where are you at bigblue troll?

  2. mojo22046 - Sep 16, 2012 at 3:51 PM

    So the the NCCA won’t be getting much from the jeweler “reportedly because of the pending litigation.” That’s typical during litigation. But what happens after the litigation is over? Will the jeweler feel free to cooperate?

    We’ll see what Emmert is made of here. If the NCAA doesn’t keep pressing the jeweler to explain why it extended $67,800 in credit to an unemployed college kid, if it walks away from this case with little or no effort to find out where Thomas got $30,000 to make a downpayment, then Emmert’s a shameless hypocrite, considering the show he put on in the Penn State matter about values and being in control.

    Let’s see how this plays out.

  3. pike573 - Sep 16, 2012 at 5:42 PM

    Making a lot of assumptions here about the NCAA. This might be a case of this kid doing business with this jeweler as a private citizen and has nothing to do with the fact that he played ball at Duke. I know it’s doubtful but there is very little information to work with.

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