The involvement of Hall of Fame quarterback Brett Favre is a Mississippi welfare fund scandal that has become something more than a random oddity. The controversy received treatment as a full clip in the Wednesday edition of NBC Nightly News.
This is a reliable test of how much a sports story becomes a major topic. Now, the millions who don’t care much about football or at all know that Favre is mired in a scandal over money for the poorest people in one of the poorest states in the country.
The story from Ken Dylanian focused on new text messages that show Favre worked with former Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant to funnel $5 million in federal sponsorship money into a volleyball field at the University of Southern Mississippi.
This text message from Favre regarding the money he received appeared in the clip: “If you’re going to pay me, is there anyway the media can find out where it came from and how much?”
The report stated that there was no indication that Favre was under criminal scrutiny. However, he was reportedly given an interview by the FBI.
Brad Piggott, an attorney who claims he was fired by the state of Mississippi after subpoenas were issued aimed at finding out if $5 million in welfare money went to the USM Project, told Delanian: “Mr. Favre has angered Mississippi Governor for making this happen. The public aims to build a volleyball facility.”
Favre’s attorney repeated his favorite new buzzword in this particular case; He said Favre acted “with honor.” The attorney also said Favre “never knew” that the money came from federal welfare funds.
Apparently Favre knew something wasn’t right about the situation, or he supposedly didn’t ask if the media would know about the payments.
The media did. The only question left is whether Favre will face consequences beyond public embarrassment and scrutiny.
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