CHICAGO — A federal judge today sentenced Norby Walters to five years in prison and Lloyd Bloom to three years for signing college athletes to representation contracts before their eligibility had expired.
U.S. District Judge George Marovich also sentenced the sports agents to five years probation.
They had faced up to 55 years in prison for racketeering, racketeering conspiracy, conspiracy to commit extortion and mail fraud.
"I'm really sorry for all the problems I have caused everyone," said Walters, 57, almost whispering and at times choking back tears. "I invested almost a million dollars in this sports business. I lost it all--I lost every penny," he said.
The prison terms were imposed for Walters' and Bloom's convictions on charges of racketeering and racketeering conspiracy.
Walters and Bloom were convicted April 13 of paying college athletes thousands of dollars to sign secret representation contracts before their college eligibility had expired, a violation of NCAA rules, and of threatening athletes with financial or physical harm in order to prevent them from breaking the agreements.