A shocking new report says that Miles Bridges’ mother received an illegal payment from an associate of an NBA agent in the same month that Miles declared his intention to play for Michigan State. The allegations first emerged in Yahoo News report that was published on February 23. It’s alleged that Cynthia Rushing-Bridges, Miles’ mother, had lunch with Christian Dawkins, who was an associate of super agent Andy Miller and ASM Sports, on May 3, 2016. That same day, Dawkins gave Cynthia $400 as an “advance,” according to the Yahoo report. Later that month, Miles signed a letter of intent to play ball at Michigan State. It is not clear if Miles knew about the meeting or the alleged payment.
The NCAA has strict rules prohibiting college athletes or their families to receive money from agents. In a statement, NCAA president Mark Emmert said, “These allegations, if true, point to systematic failures that must be fixed and fixed now if we want college sports in America.” Christian Dawkins was arrested in September 2017 and accused of bribery and fraud based on his alleged interactions with the families of various college basketball players.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Cynthia ‘Begged’ Her Son to Enter the NBA Draft in 2017 So That She Could Retire
A November 2017 feature in the Detroit Free Press detailed Cynthia’s role in her son’s development. The article refers to Miles as a “mamma’s boy” who, despite a burning desire to play in the NBA, decided to stay at Michigan State. That decision came despite the fact his mother “begged” him to enter the draft.
In his youth, Miles joined his mother and father, Raymond, on Sundays as they drove a bus around Flint, Michigan, to pick up children for church, according to the Free Press. Some time between his youth and his college career, his parents split up. Though, Cynthia told the Free Press that she still attends church three times a month. The same article says that Cynthia worked for 42 years as a hospital receptionist and wanted her son to be a “one and done” player so that she could retire.
2. Cynthia Says She Pushed Her Son Towards Basketball to Keep Him From Getting in With the Wrong Crowd
Cynthia told Michigan State’s official newspaper that her son suffers from Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. In order to get out excess energy, Cynthia says she would encourage Miles to play basketball. Cynthia goes on to say that as Miles got older, she became worried that he was falling in with the wrong crowd. She says, “He just got involved with the wrong kids, you know the kids that didn’t want to focus in on school, so we got him into basketball. That way in order to play basketball, he had to go to his classes, get good grades, so that kept him grounded… I didn’t want him to be a statistic in Flint.”
Cynthia mentions that her family wasn’t affected by the Flint water crisis but as a precaution she “buys bottled water to clean vegetables and to cook with.”
3. Miles’ Father Was ‘Out of His Life’ for ‘A Little While’
Miles told the Free Press that his third grade coach, Jeff Grayer, was like a “father figure” because Miles actual father “was out of my life for a little while, so Coach Grayer means everything to me. He taught me to become a man.”
A Michigan Live feature from February 2013 on Miles says that it was Raymond Bridges who introduced Miles to basketball. Miles was two years old. Raymond told the website, “He reminds me a little bit of myself but he likes to run and gun. Coming up, I played more down low and on the inside. I liked to get the ball in the paint and go to the hole.” While Miles says that he uses his father’s legacy as motivation. In the early ’70s, Raymond won two Class A state championships with Flint Northern in 1971 and 1972. In the latter season, the team went 25-0.
4. On his Official MSU Profile, Miles Says His Sister, Tara Rushing, Is ‘Like a Parent’
On his official Michigan State profile, Miles says that his sister, Tara, is “like a parent.” In the Free Press feature on her brother, Tara, spoke about not wanting her brother to go and play high school ball at Huntington Prep in West Virginia. Tara says, “We were like, Miles, you still do stupid stuff. You are too young. You don’t know what you are talking about. You don’t even want to do the dishes here, let alone go to a different state and stay with people… He was like, ‘I can’t get any recognition here, in Flint. ‘Let me go somewhere where there are actually people making it to the NBA.’ That’s what Miles chose.”
When Miles moved to West Virginia to attend Huntington, he lived with Susan Bouchillon and her family, though Cynthia kept in constant contact with her son. Susan told the Free Press, “There is probably not a woman alive, other than my own mother, who I respect as much as Miles’ mom. One of the biggest reasons I respected Miles the way I did, he respects his mom. He loves where he is from. He loves who he is.”
5. ASM Sports Represents Kristaps Porzingis, Serge Ibaka & Timofey Mozgov
The Yahoo Sports report is based heavily on an ASM Sports balance sheet.
Source: Heavy Sports