Originally posted on Larry Brown Sports  |  Last updated 3/23/13
Shabazz Muhammad was exposed Friday for having lied about his age to appear younger and thus more desirable as an NBA prospect. Muhammad was born on Nov. 13, 1992, but his birthday in UCLA’s media guide listed him as born in 1993. That makes him 20 and not 19 as has been stated. When Muhammad was introduced by TruTV Friday during UCLA’s NCAA Tournament game against Minnesota, a graphic listed his age as 20 and included an asterisk to note the controversy. The story of Muhammad’s true age was revealed in a Los Angeles Times column written by Ken Bensinger. In the column published Friday, Bensinger exposes Muhammad’s father, Ron Holmes, as a man intent on beating a system that is rigged against collegiate athletes. According to Bensinger, Holmes, when faced with the information, denied that his son was really 20 years old and born in Long Beach, Calif., and said Shabazz was 19 and born in Nevada. Holmes changed his story — presumably after being presented with evidence to the contrary — and then reportedly tried to buy out Bensinger by seemingly offering to give him exclusive scoops in exchange for keeping the truth about his son’s age private. Changing his son’s age served a two-fold purpose: It allowed Muhammad to compete against younger, less developed players, which made it easier for him to look more dominant and therefore become more desirable to colleges. Being young and dominant is also attractive to NBA scouts evaluating prospects. The revelation about Muhammad’s age changes the thinking; would he have been as dominant had he been playing against competition his age? Muhammad was initially suspended by the NCAA before the season began for allegedly receiving improper benefits in the form of recruiting trips being paid. He got off after a letter leaked that made it seem like the NCAA was unfairly targeting him, but there wasn’t much of a question about him taking the money. If you read the entire column, and combine it with what we know about Muhammad from before the season began, it’s hard to question how much his family took in improper benefits. Holmes says his son choosing to play at UCLA “was strictly a business decision.” If you read between the lines, it’s not difficult to understand what he means. As the Times column states, Adidas began sponsoring Muhammad’s AAU team around 2010. The apparel companies get involved with these players during high school (or earlier) and can begin funneling money to families/coaches/advisers through AAU teams. Naturally, where did Muhammad choose to go to school? UCLA, which is an Adidas school. And what apparel company sponsors Muhammad’s sister, Asia, who is a fledgling professional tennis player? Yup, you guessed it. When Holmes says choosing UCLA was a “business decision,” you know exactly what he means. Image via @cjzero Related posts: Shabazz Muhammad was investigated for potential violation because he has a Gucci backpack Ben Howland: Shabazz Muhammad is leaving UCLA for NBA UNLV Fan Offers to Name First-Born Child After Top Recruit Shabazz Muhammad

This article first appeared on Larry Brown Sports and was syndicated with permission.

GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Durant apologizes for response to fans complaining about blowouts

Sheldon Richardson: Locker room is better without Brandon Marshall

What's next for the Spurs?

Padres, MLB issue statements on drone crash at Petco Park

Pro Football Hall of Famer Cortez Kennedy dies at 48

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: NFL modifies injured reserve rule

Report: Cowboys DE facing four game-ban for supplement

Charlie Sheen working on ‘Major League 3’ with original cast

Report: Odell Beckham Jr. expected at OTAs Thursday after no-show

Kelvin Benjamin looks overweight and slow during drill

Report: Red Sox players feel John Farrell does not back them enough in media

The 'Walk on home, boy' quiz

Box Score 5/23: Preds, Warriors move on to respective Finals

NBA Weekend Awards: Who will take a bite of the Snow White Crystal Apple?

The 'How two award snubs might shake up the NBA' quiz

Preparing for the BIG3: Q&A with BIG3 co-founder Jeff Kwatinetz

Two months in and Nintendo's Switch dominates 2017 video game market

Getaway Day: League leaders falter allowing new teams to surge ahead

Why wait? Our too soon Cavaliers-Warriors NBA Finals preview

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Best of Yardbarker: Gregg Popovich doesn't mince words

The 'Happy birthday to two of the NBA's all-time antagonists' quiz

The shortstop evolution continues to raise the ceiling

College Basketball News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The 'Walk on home, boy' quiz

NBA Weekend Awards: Who will take a bite of the Snow White Crystal Apple?

The 'How two award snubs might shake up the NBA' quiz

Preparing for the BIG3: Q&A with BIG3 co-founder Jeff Kwatinetz

Two months in and Nintendo's Switch dominates 2017 video game market

Getaway Day: League leaders falter allowing new teams to surge ahead

Why wait? Our too soon Cavaliers-Warriors NBA Finals preview

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Best of Yardbarker: Gregg Popovich doesn't mince words

The 'Happy birthday to two of the NBA's all-time antagonists' quiz

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker