Among the players Luchs accused of receiving money in violation of NCAA rules was former Ohio State wide receiver Santonio Holmes. Luchs tried to recruit Holmes as a client, but claimed the player told him another agent was already paying him and his family. A witness corroborates Luchs’ assertion, but Holmes denied taking money from an agent, according to SI.

School compliance officials are looking into the allegation even though it’s unlikely there will be sanctions from the NCAA, which has a four-year statute of limitations on rules violations. Holmes played at Ohio State from 2002 to ’05.

The cover story in SI came after a summer in which multiple high-profile football programs — including Florida, North Carolina and South Carolina — were targeted by the NCAA regarding allegations of payouts from agents to college players.

During the weekly Big Ten coaches teleconference Tuesday, Ohio State coach Jim Tressel said officials from a host of parties — including the NCAA, NFL, NFL Players Association and American Football Coaches Association — have met in recent months to talk about how the problem can be addressed.

Tressel said there needs to be a mechanism to punish players who take illicit payouts before jumping to the NFL.

“There really isn’t a branch from the college level to the NFL where if you struggle in college to follow the rules, you’re going to lose some privileges in the NFL,” he said.

Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz said the agent culture has become more aggressive.

“Ultimately it just gets back to people have to say no,” Ferentz said. “All we can continue to do is try to educate our players as proactively as possible and just show them what the potential downside is.”

Ready to return

Michigan State coach Mark Dantonio was in the hospital, recovering from complications after a heart attack, when his team beat the University of Wisconsin. He subsequently coached from the press box during wins over Michigan and Illinois.

But if Dantonio gets consent from his doctors, he’ll return to the sideline Saturday at Northwestern even though it could tamper with his good karma.

“I’m not very superstitious in that way,” he said.

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