GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- The case played out like many other NCAA violations.
College sports' governing body found a prominent football player at a Southeastern Conference school had accepted impermissible benefits. He was suspended and forced to repay the money. What came next, though, was unprecedented and could be a loophole used in the future to provide benefits for elite athletes.
After his suspension, Florida defensive tackle Sharrif Floyd was adopted, at age 20, by the man who provided those benefits.
Floyd, a junior for the seventh-ranked Gators and a possible first-round pick in the NFL draft, now receives far more from his adoptive father, Kevin Lahn, than he was punished for taking last year. Under NCAA rules, there are virtually no limits to what a parent can provide to an athlete but a slew of restrictions on what a player can receive from anyone else.