Former NFL Lineman and Syracuse Orangeman Tim Green Under Investigation

Mary Ann ReitanoContributor IIISeptember 2, 2011

Former Atlanta Falcon, Tim Green under investigation
Former Atlanta Falcon, Tim Green under investigationAllen Steele/Getty Images

The Post-Standard, the Syracuse-area metro newspaper, is reporting that former Syracuse University All-American offensive lineman and NFL defensive end Tim Green is at the center of an internal investigation taking place in his somewhat posh, upscale community of Skaneateles, New York.

There are allegations being made that Green, the high school football coach, has broken recruiting regulations over the summer as four new students athletes moved into the district to play football under Green. These include an incoming sophomore from Chicago and three seniors whose previous hometowns include Syracuse and Kent County, Virginia.  

After leaving the NFL in 1993, Green went on to become an attorney as well as an acclaimed author of crime thriller novels, several of which made the New York Times' best-seller list. He has also involved himself in TV, doing some NFL commentating and hosting a few short-lived reality shows with family themes—adoption in particular. 

Green has been somewhat of a moving target in Central New York, as his ego and insatiable need for attention has regularly surrounded him in controversy. In 2009, due to his own personal issues with head football coach John King in Skaneateles, Green moved his teenage son to another area school district some 25 miles away. He wanted his son to have the tutelage of a high school football coach who was more to Green's liking. Green then became the middle school wrestling coach in Skaneateles where he, his wife Illyssa and their five children have called home since 1993.

He then, some believe, used his influence to see to it that said coach King was removed from his position so that Green could step in as the new head coach of the Skaneateles Lakers. In January of 2010, Green was voted in as the new head coach by a vote of 4-3 by the Skaneateles school board. This resulted in him being able to coach his own son as well.  

In his first year as head coach, Green and the Lakers had a 3-5 record, while this year the team will drop down to Section III Class C.    

The Post-Standard stated, "Section III executive director John Rathbun and Section III football chairman Bob Campese said they’ve been swamped with complaints from coaches that Green is recruiting players for Skaneateles." Campese also went on to say that there was a "big buzz" around this situation and that he has been hearing from coaches throughout Central New York.

The rule book states that "the use of undue influence to secure a student for competitive purposes in a sport is prohibited.” 

Another interesting twist to this story is the fact that the three seniors that were added to the roster were all African American. The Post-Standard went on to say, "Skaneateles had only one African American student in the 2009-10 year, according to the state Department of Education. In 10 years before that, there were six years in which the school had no African American students."  

While race is not at issue in this investigation, the fact that these students came from far reaching areas, one as far away as Virginia, to this affluent sleepy little town to play high school football under Green should certainly be cause for concern. 

An internal investigation was initiated by the village of Skaneateles' law firm to look into the allegations. Apparently the student athletes in question have all met residency requirements and have been given the green light to play under Green. The story goes on to explain the somewhat interesting paths that led the three seniors to Skaneateles, adding to the multitude of questions that are going around the league.

If these accusations are confirmed, the consequences could result in forfeiting any victories involving the illegal players and up to and including the team forfeiting their entire season.

While locally opinions run the gambit, the one aspect of this story that cannot be ignored is that the coincidence factor is hard to ignore. Green is also known locally as being somewhat of an egomaniac. He is often quick tempered and ill mannered, and humility, some have said, is a trait that he would do well to learn.  

His personal successes are hard to ignore but at what point does success become an obsession?  Green is not only an attorney, novelist and football and wrestling coach; he also sits on the board of several area non-profits, was considering a political campaign in 2008 and is said to be a close friend to a controversial commercial real estate mogul.

In December of 2010, Green was names one of the six NCAA's Silver Anniversary winners, an award that "annually recognizes distinguished individuals on the 25th anniversary of the conclusion of their college athletics careers."