Phillip Buchanon

Phillip Buchanon coaches money skills via his hard lessons

Former first-round NFL draft pick Phillip Buchanon, who learned his financial lessons the hard way, is at the NFL Rookie Symposium this week in Aurora, Ohio, hoping to pass along his hard-won knowledge.

Buchanon, writing on his personal blog, says, "When I got to the NFL, I was all dollars and no sense. I am here at the NFL Rookie Symposium to make sure that these NFL rookies don’t make the same mistakes that I did. I wish I had better mentors and I wish I had the right people around me. That would have impacted my career early on, no doubt."

That career lasted from 2002, when the defensive back from Miami (Fla.) was the Raiders' No. 1 pick, through 2011, when he retired from the Redskins. According to one estimate, he had more than $20 million in earnings in his 10-season career. Yet he didn't maximize the potential of that huge sum.

"If I had the right team around me back when I started playing in the league, mentors who could have helped put me on the right path and pointed me in the right direction, I would have saved a lot more money," he writes. "And the reason why I focus on the financial piece is because I know that if I had that part better figured out, I would have played better on the field too. I had to deal with major family-related financial situations when I should have been focusing on football."

Buchanon also has written a book titled "New Money: Staying Rich" about his learning curve, which included his mom demanding $1 million as payback for raising him, he said. But it goes beyond that, he writes, into the decision-making process when dealing with newfound wealth.

"When I talk about this, people sometimes ask what kind of bad financial decisions I made. I’d say blowing $1.5 million in one business deal was pretty bad. I would say giving a lot of money away — $50,000 here, $20,000 there — was not a smart move. When you are a young player with new money, you feel obligated to just give your money away because of the pressure that you feel, especially from your own family."

By appearing at the Rookie Symposium, Buchanon hopes to share his story with young players who, in turn, will make better decisions from the start of their professional careers: "When they come into getting a lot of money, I want them to make sure it’s permanent money. I don’t want them to blow it all, and next thing you know, it’s gone."

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Phillip Buchanon's story about money and his mom is sad but important

There are plenty of stories of NFL players blowing their money, with the tales often involving family members having their hands out, but few are as stark, specific and revealing as the story Phillip Buchanon tells in his new book.

Fox Sports published an excerpt from Buchanon's book, "New Money: Staying Rich." In the excerpt, the former NFL cornerback talks about family members, particularly his mother, coming to him for money after he was drafted by the Oakland Raiders in 2002. Buchanon says his mother told him he owed her $1 million for raising him.

"Well, that was news to me," wrote Buchanon, who played 10 NFL seasons for five teams. "If my mother taught me anything, it's that this is the most desperate demand that a parent can make on a child. The covenant of having a child is simply that you give your child everything possible, and they owe you nothing beyond a normal amount of love and respect. There is no financial arrangement."

Buchanon wrote that he bought his mother a house instead, and told her to sell his childhood house. But he says she kept both houses, renting one to an aunt, and he ended up making the payments on both. He wrote that it was a mistake to buy such a big house for his mother, and proposed a solution.

"I offered to buy her a comfortable house in my name for her to live in. This way she wouldn't have to take out any loans or put my little sister and brothers in a situation where the roof over their heads could be taken away. She'd move out of the house that was too big for her and into this new one. Instead, she opted for $15,000 cash.

"I told her that if I gave her the $15,000, not to come calling when she got into trouble. Needless to say, she ended up calling. And, what's worse, she lost the house." 

Buchanon told Fox Sports that he wants future generations of athletes to avoid the mistakes he made. In his book description from his website, he warned that "'fun friends' and family will view you as an endless ATM." He also wrote about family members asking for money to get something fixed, but the things would never get fixed after Buchanon wrote them a check. When Buchanon later offered to pay for the repairs directly to the company doing the work, all of a sudden family members weren't so interested anymore.

The stories of athletes spending their money have been told before, and ESPN Films did a good job compiling many in the documentary "Broke." And, of course, not all NFL players spend all the money they made in football. But the ones who do, after being given millions of dollars at a very young age, have regrets. Buchanon hopes others avoid the mistakes he made, even if he had to share some uncomfortable stories about his family to get his point across.

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Phillip Buchanon's NFL ring lost

Former University of Miami football star Phillip Buchanon admits he was “young and stupid” during the early part of his 10-year career in the National Football League.

Part of that immaturity, he says, was giving away money and materialistic things to family and friends. That included a 2002 Oakland Raiders AFC Championship ring he gave to his agent, Boris Banks.

And now that ring may be gone for good.

Banks lost it March 19 when he left it in a small black bag on the top of his SUV at a Delray Beach gas station.

“I was in a hurry and I just forgot about it when I drove off,” said Banks, 52, who lives in West Palm Beach. “I drove back and couldn’t find it. I was like ‘Oh my God. I just lost the ring.’”

Banks, who said he was rushing to pick up and take a client — former USF player Chris Dunkley — to the airport, didn’t realize it until he stopped to pick up Dunkley.

The ring, along with other personal items, were lost in the area near Linton Boulevard and Congress Ave.

Delray Beach Police Detective Oscar Leon said he also searched but came up empty.

“I scoured the area pretty thoroughly on foot,” Leon said. “Somebody could have it. It could be on the side of the street somewhere or a street sweeper could have pushed it into the sewer for all we know.”

Buchanon, 34, said he wasn’t aware that Banks had lost the ring, but did remember giving it to him in 2003.

“Honestly, I had forgotten about it,” said Buchanon, who lives in Miami. “I knew he had it. I guess it will show up somewhere.”

Banks said he was planning to tell Buchanon he lost the ring.

“He was mad because he lost the Super Bowl that year,” Banks recalled. “He said if he wasn’t going to have the Super Bowl ring, he wasn’t going to wear anything else.”

The ring honored the Raiders’ 41-24 victory against the Tennessee Titans, which put them in the Super Bowl, where they lost to Tampa Bay.

Buchanon said when he came into the league, he was “throwing around a lot of money and things” and that by the time he was traded to the Houston Texans in 2005, his spending was out of control.

“I looked at my bank account and honestly, was shocked,” he said. “It kind of hit me then that I was spending too much. I look back now and wish I had better habits.”
The low point, he said, was in 2006, when he was robbed of $20,000 at gunpoint in Atlanta.

He said he stopped giving things away, especially money. After the NFL, while completing his degree at UM, his aunt and some professors urged him to write a book about fiscal responsibility for those who come into big money at a young age.

Buchanon was in Houston on Tuesday for the release of his book “New Money Staying Rich,” which he says “dispenses valuable advice, taken from first-hand experiences, to aspiring professional athletes, entrepreneurs, and anyone fortunate enough to be the beneficiary of rapid wealth.”

At UM, Buchanon, a cornerback, earned All-American honors as a returner during his junior year.

Buchanon was part of the 2001 University of Miami team that won the national championship in the Rose Bowl against Nebraska including seven starting defensive players who were NFL No. 1 draft picks: Buchanon, Mike Rumph, Edward Reed, Jonathan Vilma, D.J. Williams, William Joseph and Jerome McDougle.

Buchanon was drafted by the Raiders 17th overall that year. He spent three seasons with Oakland, recording 122 tackles and 11 interceptions, before later playing with Houston, Tampa Bay, Detroit and Washington. He retired in 2010.

“I never got around to finding out what happened to the ring,” Buchanon said. “Honestly, though, I’d like to get it back now.”

There is a $500 reward for the lost ring. Anyone with information on the ring or Banks’ bag of personal belongings is urged to contact Detective Oscar Leon at (561) 243-7868.

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proCane Draft Pick Profile: Phillip Dorsett

The Atlanta Falcons need to start looking into long-term solutions at slot receiver. Phillip Dorsett of Miami (Fla.) has an immense amount of talent for the position and should be a good fit in the Falcons offense with Julio Jones and Roddy White early in his career.

He could push Devin Hester and Harry Douglas for playing time on offense and would also be an ideal fit as someone to learn from Douglas for a year before the former Louisville receiver's contract expires. Atlanta's got the ability to take a receiver in 2015 to eventually replace Douglas, and Dorsett could be the guy.

Phillip Dorsett
Wide Receiver
University of Miami

Combine/Pro-Day Measurements
Height: 5'9.625" Weight: 183 lbs
Arm Length: 31" Hand Measurement: 9.125"

2014: 13 Games Played, 36 Catches, 871 Yards, 10 Touchdowns, 2 Carries, -6 Yards, 1 Punt Return, -6 Yards, Touchdowns, 8 Kick Returns, 116 Yards, 3 Tackles
2013: 8 Games Played, 13 Catches, 272 Yards, 2 Touchdowns, 9 Punt Returns, 57 Yards, 2 Kick Returns, 28 Yards
2012: 12 Games Played, 58 Catches, 842 Yards, 4 Touchdowns, 5 Carries, 8 Yards, 15 Punt Returns, 85 Yards, 11 Kick Returns, 251 Yards
2011: 12 Games Played, 14 Catches, 147 Yards, 1 Touchdown, 4 Kick Returns, 82 Yards, 2 Tackles

Scouting Report

Burner isn't a strong enough word to describe just how fast Dorsett is. He's one of those guys who can beat anyone deep and would provide matchup issues no matter where he lined up there. More than that, he has an uncanny ability to turn a short or intermediate crossing route into a ton of yardage.

He seems to be a willing blocker and also has shown some rushing ability off of end-arounds. The biggest thing he does well is use suddenness and raw straight-line speed to create separation. If he can figure out how to use this effectively on option routes in the pros, he could be a terror to opposing defenses.

Dorsett isn't a big guy by any means. His size compares most favorably to a DeSean Jackson or even a Steve Smith. So he's not going to be a guy who you want going over the middle and fighting traffic. He's not an overly physical player either.

He does have some issues with his hands and can drop some easy balls after he makes tough catches. There are also questions regarding his route running, but those seem fixable with the right combination of a mentor and a good receivers coach.

How Does He Fit the Comrade Filter?
Dorsett is a leader on and off the field. He's taken Central Arkansas receiver Dezmin Lewis under his wing at the Senior Bowl and been helping him get his splits and footwork right. The fact that he is selfless enough to help someone competing for the same potential roster spots says a lot about his character.

Someone who has leadership is never going to be turned away from the Falcons. Add in that he was never arrested or suspended, and that already puts him above and beyond the competition in this aspect. Dorsett doesn't just pass the Comrade Filter; the filter potentially bumps him a bit higher.

Dorsett is a true slot receiver who will be able to create big plays after the catch when lined up there. However, he does have the intelligence and suddenness to make big plays on the outside as well. As one of the fastest players on the field, he can beat anyone deep.

The question is how well he does the little things most wide receivers need to do on their routes to create separation in the NFL. Atlanta would be a good fit for him, as he could learn those little things from Julio Jones, Roddy White, Harry Douglas and Devin Hester.

How He Would Fit into the Falcons' Plans
With White, Douglas and Hester all over 30 years old entering the 2015 season, the Falcons need to bring in someone who could easily take over one of their spots in the long term. Since Douglas has just one year left on his contract, he should be the first to be replaced.

Dorsett would be an amazing fit as a slot receiver and wouldn't have to do much for the Falcons early in his career. He would ideally be a pick in the fourth or even fifth round but could go as high as the third round with an exceptional combine.

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Phillip Buchanon Talks His Book, “New Money: Staying Rich”, His Take On The NFL, & More

Former University of Miami Cane & NFL Player Phillip Buchanon sat down with us exclusively as he dishes on his new book New Money: Staying Rich, his take on the NFL today, what he has been up to, and more.

Check out the interview.

Congratulations on your book, New Money: Staying Rich. What was the inspiration behind the book?
Phillip Buchanon: The inspiration behind my book, New Money: Staying Rich was that I was going through a lot of things when I first got my money, I didn’t understand like how to really handle money like that….so it was something that was really taught and I was educated on the balance of money & knowing how to handle certain situations with family & friends, just dealing with people in general but with me like I was riding home one day from my hometown Fort Myers and one of my best friends told me that I should write a book about my experiences to kind of tell people & actually educate other players about stuff your going through since you get a lot of money and my aunt in Miami Mary Buchanon kept telling me that I should write a book. I went back to school and finished my degree when I was hurt and two of my professors told me they thought it will be a wonderful idea for me to write a novel saying about the trials & tribulations of what I went through when I first got my money so that was the inspiration behind it.

What can fans expect from this book?
P.B.: They could expect everything under the sun, I’m being very truthful about the situation with my family & a lot of stuff about my friends, these are stories that may brought up in the wrong way but I’m not here to embarrassed anybody I’m just telling my story from my perspective and this is just to really educate. I’m talking about dealing with financial advisors, I called them “financial molestors” and I talk about who could make you broker. I call the people who are in your life, I called them assaultors you know what you know the term “child abusers” but I have a different definition to explain some of the things & I also have some football stories too and most of those stories cater towards my career in the NFL, and some of those stories might not be setting the right light but I’m gearing my perspective of me and some of the things I went through could have been handled a lot better by certain teams that I played on. I talked about the importance of having a mentor and different stuff like that but pretty much everything in my book I’m speaking the truth and I’m not holding back so you definitely be entertained you know about the girls, everything and about having fun, and about me hanging out with Hollywood stars & Jay Z & stuff like that.

What is your take on the new NFL personal conduct policy?
P.B.: It’s a step in the right direction just because whenever you do anything there’s always room for improvement and right now the NFL trying to make improvements, they want fans to look at the NFL as being a first class organization, and some of the things that they went through it wasn’t the best situation but it was a step in the right direction.

Who is your favorite player that you look at during every game?
P.B.: I don’t really know right now. I have players who I talked to and kind of mentored not like Stephon Gilmore, I’m trying to think off top of my head right now. Honestly, I want to see everybody do good and shout out to my do or dies and pretty much the Florida guys because they’re from Miami & South Florida. Me honestly, I’ve been focused on doing my children’s books, all of my board games, working on apps, and comic books so honestly, I really haven’t been paying attention to it but when I get a chance to watch it I just watch it. I’m so glued to the tv because I don’t believe in fantasy football, I think fantasy football is cool but I don’t think it’s for me.

Would you ever consider maybe coaching a team one day?
P.B.: Yeah, I’m interested in coaching. I think coaching is part of my future whether it will be starting out in high school or starting out in college, I don’t know yet but we see how that play out…but I’m always evaluating certain situations and I just catch myself from certain situations  like the play of our calls when I watch the game, I’m always in tuned to it to see what could possibility happen. I could see myself coaching pretty soon at some point.

Who do you see going to The Super Bowl?
P.B.: The two teams that I will see playing in the Super Bowl right now for me watching it…it’s kind of hard Arizona Cardinals started out good but right now things are kind of rocky..but it’s kind of hard to take away from the defended champs in that area. Like I said I haven’t been paying attention and I just been focused on what I do best. When I get focused on something I get focused on it and pretty much that’s what I been doing. If I had to say it you can’t knock the New England Patriots right now because their doing good. I would say the New England Patriots and Seahawks.

How does it feel to see both the NBA & the NFL stand up for Mike Brown & Eric Garner?
P.B.: Awww man that feels good. I mean that shows that we stand for a lot as far as the NFL players, I take my hat off to them, LeBron James, Derrick Rose, and Kobe Bryant and pretty much anybody that wore a t-shirt and stood up for it. That showing the progress & hopefully we could make some progress, and go in the right direction. I’m happy to see it and whenever I seen it I retweeted it on Twitter and if I saw it on Facebook, I just repost it so those are some of the things I did. I love the movement and I love how the NFL & the NBA got behind it and I even saw a soccer player wearing a t-shirt, I forgot what team he played for but it was overseas. I was pleased to see that.

What will be your advice for fellow retired NFL players when it comes to money?
P.B.: Very interesting question (laughs). When it comes to money, I will say the top five people who you associated with on the daily basis have a direct effect on whether you’re being professional or not having the unsuccessful transition just because it’s more by the transition when you’re playing football a lot of guys don’t transition well because their friends don’t have the right friends or the right mentor. Having the right people in your life that will help you transition smoother than being able to have a better life because most guys get caught up in being in that same lifestyle & spending money, having fun that’s kind of what happens as far as guys going broke..but I’ll definitely say between if you got the right mentors, the right friends that don’t get money from you that’s very important. I’ll say the top five people that you associated with on the daily basis with family or friends, having the right mentor these people don’t need anything from you that will help a lot of these players transition well with life after football.

If you want to know more about Phillip Buchanon and his new business ventures, make sure that you follow him on social media at @PhillipBuchanon and get his children books & his latest book New Money: Staying Rich available now on Amazon.

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Comments EXCLUSIVE Preview of Article Running TOMORROW on the 2001 Hurricanes

A message from Aaron Torres of

“They’re the greatest team of all-time.”

It’s a statement we often hear about the 2001 Miami Hurricanes, both by fans, and the media members who cover college football as well.

But after hearing it earlier this year, a light-bulb went off in my head: Just about everyone seems to have an opinion the 2001 ‘Canes, except Miami’s former players and coaches themselves.

And from there, another thought immediately popped into my head: What if I tracked down as many Hurricanes players and coaches from that 2001 season as I could, interviewed them, and asked what they thought about their team, and where they rank in college football history.

How awesome would that be?

Well, six months later, the answer was “spectacular” and after collecting interviews with roughly 50 former players and coaches, an article, the definitive article on the greatest team in the history of college football will run on on Wednesday.

If you’re a ‘Canes fan (which I have to imagine you are if you’re reading this website), I can promise you that you can enjoy the article.

But here’s the thing: During the process of reporting the article, I learned that I wasn’t the only one who shared the same passion for the 2001 ‘Canes. As it turned out, one of the former players I interviewed, Najeh Davenport, also shared that passion, and like me wanted to tell the world his team’s story. Najeh recently released a documentary about the team, titled ‘The U: Reloaded’ which premiered last month. Through Najeh, I met his business partner Platon, who runs things here at

And it was through my friendship with Platon, that we’ve decided to give Miami fans a treat. Before the article runs in full on Wednesday, Platon was nice enough to offer up his space here on, to run an excerpt. It’s a treat for all you diehard ‘Canes fans, and proCanes is the only place that you can read this exclusive excerpt.

Of course the article will still run in its entirety Wednesday, and if you enjoy what you read here, be sure to check out the article on You can also follow on Twitter @Aaron_Torres, where I’ll post the link once it goes live.

In the meantime, enjoy this excerpt from the article….

In the excerpt, we pick things up shortly after Larry Coker was hired as head coach, as the team prepared for the 2001 season.

As you’ll learn however, it really didn’t matter who the Hurricanes had hired as head coach. The team was not going to be denied the title that had eluded them the year before.

Again, enjoy and be sure to look for the full article on Wednesday.

The final, and arguably most important piece to the 2001 team was set: Miami had its head coach.

Now it was time to get to work. A team that had been denied a shot at a National Championship the season before, was not going to allow that to happen again.

Joaquin Gonzalez (senior, offensive tackle): The one thing I remember going into 2001 was, Larry Coker and his staff, as well as the players decided that we weren’t going to leave the decision on who plays for the championship on anyone else’s plate but our own. 

Brett Romberg (junior, center): (Our mindset was) ‘This year it ain’t gonna be decided on a poll or whatever kind of computer analysis.’ We were worked up, ready to get back at it.

Maurice Sikes (sophomore, safety): If you’re going to say you’re a champion, earn it. Don’t leave it to a voter; don’t leave it to anything to chance.’

D.J. Williams (sophomore, linebacker): It was great to be there with Butch, but when he left our plan didn’t change.

Brett Romberg (junior, center): We were anxious to get back at it. We didn’t want downtime. Usually you’re excited to get back home, brag ‘We just won the Sugar Bowl’ but we didn’t want that. We were like, ‘Let’s get back in the weight room, and get after it.

Ed Reed (senior, safety): When we got back to Miami to start spring football … my God. That spring before that National Championship year, those off-season workouts, it was like no other in the world.

Andreu Swasey (strength and conditioning coach): That was our DNA (to work hard). That is part of our system. It wasn’t talent-driven, it was work-ethic driven.

Mike Rumph (senior, cornerback): I don’t feel like we get ever get credit for our work ethic. I played six years in the NFL and the hardest I ever worked was at Miami. Those summers were treacherous.

Frank Gore (freshman, running back): My first day I get there, we were doing agilities with the linebackers; I’m competing with Chris Campbell, God rest his soul, and I’m like ‘Man, I think I made the wrong decision.’ I’m the top (high school) running back, how is a linebacker beating me in agilities?

Clinton Portis (junior, running back): We competed in everything! We all wanted to be the fastest player, we all wanted to be the best basketball player, we all wanted to be the highest jumper, we all wanted to be the best at everything we did.

Antrel Rolle (freshman, cornerback): The way we practiced, it was insane. I’ll be honest with you, it was literally insane. You would think that we did not like each other, on the field, off the field.

Mike Rumph (senior, cornerback): It was just a machine. It was a machine but we were just so afraid to have failure.

Curtis Johnson (wide receivers coach): Andreu Swasey said this all the time: The players were always around. They were always around us, always around the office. It’d be Friday night, Saturday morning, they’d be around, they’d want to want watch more film, and we couldn’t get rid of these guys for nothing. Their whole lives revolved around this little football team.

Mark Stoops (defensive backs coach): Soon after I was hired by Larry (as defensive backs coach in 2001) I was in my office working on a Saturday and I saw one of my players come by, then I saw another one. Over the course of the morning several guys stopped up and were talking. And I thought it was odd. I asked one of them, ‘What are you doing here on a Saturday morning?’ And one of them just looked at me and tilted his head and was like ‘Coach, this is just what we do.’

Mike Rumph (senior, cornerback): People didn’t see the Saturdays where we met up as a team (in the off-season). Or the meetings we’d have 6 in the morning, where there were no coaches there.

Brett Romberg (junior, center): Saturday morning at 8:00 a.m., no matter how hung-over you were, you are in the field.

Mark Stoops (defensive backs coach): Over the course of the morning several guys stopped up and were talking. And I thought it was odd. I asked one of them, ‘What are you doing here on a Saturday morning?’ And one of them just looked at me and tilted his head and was like ‘Coach, this is just what we do.’

Brett Romberg (junior, center): Granted, you didn’t have to be there. At any other school a guy might show up at 8:05 with his shoes untied or something. Not at Miami. No, if you didn’t show up at 7:55 ready to go, you got shunned. Nobody wants to talk to you, because you think you’re so much bigger than the group. There were never any egos.

Mark Stoops (defensive backs coach): They did seven-on-seven with each other, the o-line and d-line worked basically the whole year round. That’s just what they did; it was part of their culture… I was blown away by the player’s self-motivation and how great the leaders were there.

Don Soldinger (running backs coach): One time, Frank Gore called me at 3:30 a.m. to ask me about pass protections.

Frank Gore (freshman, running back): He said ‘If you need help, don’t be afraid to call.’ So I was studying my plays and I called him and told him to quiz me.

Andreu Swasey (strength and conditioning coach): Who stood out as leaders and workers from that group? Can I say ‘The team?’ I had so many guys.

Curtis Johnson (wide receivers coach): It started during 2000, but the players, they really policed themselves. We had no altercations, we had no nothing.

Ed Reed (senior, safety): We told coach, ‘If anything happens with the players on the team coach, we got it. Don’t you worry about it.’

D.J. Williams (sophomore, linebacker): As far as punishment, that was all done within the locker room.

Andreu Swasey (strength and conditioning coach): If you didn’t make your times, it wasn’t pretty for you. And I didn’t have anything to do with it! I did everything to help you, I might try to save you, but the rest of the guys would be like ‘Coach, you might not want to see this.’

Phillip Buchanon (junior, cornerback): The coaches aren’t gonna handle this. This is our locker room. We’re going to handle this.

Andreu Swasey (strength and conditioning coach): They handled their own discipline. So I’d start talking and Ed Reed would cut me off, like ‘I don’t mean any disrespect…’ then he’d handle the lecture for me. And I’m like ‘Damn, ok.’

Curtis Johnson (wide receivers coach): I remember, Sean Taylor was a freshman and I was watching him right at the beginning of two-a-days and Sean, he just didn’t run (as) fast (as he could) or something. And the coach went to get on him, and before the coach could get there Ed Reed just jumped on him; Sean was almost crying. It was the worst thing you could ever see, but the coaches didn’t have to do any of that, the players did it all. When that happens, I knew we were well on our way.

Najeh Davenport (senior, fullback): This may seem bad to say, but my senior year, Coach Coker was the head coach, Coach Chud was the offensive coordinator, but once we learned the system, that’s all she wrote.

Maurice Sikes (sophomore, safety): (Coker) knew how great of a team he had. He had been there with us. We had great leadership on our team, we had great coaches, great assistants, great starters, great back-ups. We knew what we had, and knew we didn’t need much tinkering.

Brett Romberg (junior, center): Butch Davis had done a great job steering that ship and doing a great job in building it, and all we needed was somebody to maintain the animal. Coker was the perfect fit.

Maurice Sikes (sophomore, safety): He had a very good understanding of the fact that he had a masterpiece. All he had to do was take it to the damn museum.

Najeh Davenport (senior, fullback): We were teaching each other, coaching each other, watching film together. We were destined to win the National Championship. 

Randy Shannon (defensive coordinator): I felt like we had a bunch of guys who had a common goal. They wanted to win a championship.
Aaron is a contributor at You can follow him on Twitter @Aaron_Torres, and be sure to check for the full article on Wednesday.

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Phillip Buchanon Gives 12 Ways To Improve The Hurricanes

proCane Phillip Buchanon was an All-American cornerback and played 10 years in the NFL. By the looks of his Twitter feed, it also makes him uniquely qualified to coach football, or more specifically, to offer some unsolicited advice to Al Golden (whom he refers to as "Folden") in the wake of the Hurricanes' 31-13 loss at Louisville on Monday night.

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Phillip Buchanon moves from interceptions to comics

When a veteran comic book editor learned she would be working with a former NFL player, she looked forward to getting her first impression.

Phillip Buchanon, a 1999 Lehigh Senior High graduate who finished his 11-year NFL career in 2011, gave her a favorable one. He called Shawna Gore not long after he finished his final season on injured reserve with the Washington Redskins.

Buchanon, 33 and living in Miami, began to research the comic book industry in early 2012, hoping to get information and contacts he could use to start a second career. The Fort Myers native contacted Gore, who began connecting him with various comic book writers and artists. Some of them have worked for Marvel Comics, DC Comics and Dark Horse Comics, the three largest comic companies in the country.

Buchanon’s interest in producing comic books reached a peak last weekend when he and some of his collaborators convened for the 45th annual San Diego Comic-Con International, the best-known national convention of comic book aficionados.

There, Buchanon displayed and promoted his first three comics: The Supernals Experiment, The Aquatic Bourne and New Money. New Money will also be a novel to be self-published by Buchanon.

The three comics have rare, print editions. Otherwise, two of them, New Money and The Supernals Experiment, are now available for download for 99 cents each from The Aquatic Bourne will be available in September.

The Supernals Experiment is a five-part, monthly series that will run through the end of the year.

“I’m working on a lot of different things,” Buchanon said. . “Don’t be surprised if this is just the first of many different things I’ll be doing. It’s crazy how I got started.”

The genesis of the comic storylines began in Fort Myers.

“When I was young, I didn’t go to the Bell Tower,” Buchanon said. “I went to the dollar theater right next to the Edison Mall. I was really into the movies. As I got older, I started to realize how much I enjoyed going to the movies. Then I would start thinking, ‘What if they did this, or what if they did that?’ ”

Buchanon took his movie ideas and transformed them into comics.

The plotline for New Money revolves around a professional boxer, an NFL player, a soccer star and a singer who each sign lucrative contracts and come into money after growing up in low-income environments.

The NFL player in the comic, a cornerback named Broderick McFadden, is loosely based on Buchanon.

“When I first got into the NFL, I had a lot of dollars, but I didn’t have a lot of sense,” said Buchanon, who as the No. 17 overall pick in the 2002 NFL Draft received a five-year, $12 million contract from the Oakland Raiders, which later traded him to the Houston Texans. Buchanon also has played for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Detroit Lions and Redskins. He finished his career with 388 tackles and 20 interceptions, five of which he returned for touchdowns.
“I didn’t know how to manage the money,” Buchanon said of the earlier part of his career. “That’s where this book came from.”

N. Steve Harris, a former Marvel artist who co-created the DC comic character Aztek, drew the cover and artwork for New Money.

“It was interesting subject matter for a comic book,” said Harris, who lives in Brooklyn, N.Y., and met Buchanon for the first time in person at Comic-Con. “These kinds of comic books are expanding even outside of America. Now you have other comic people coming out with their own comics and their own vision. You see totally different ideas being expressed and put out there in the general market.”

Gore, who has collaborated with other celebrities such as rock stars Gene Simmons of Kiss and Rob Zombie, said she wasn’t sure what to expect when she learned she would be working with a former NFL player. Based in Portland, Ore., she is a freelance editor who used to work for Dark Horse Comics.

“I wasn’t sure if he would be a macho guy or if he would respect a woman’s view of telling him what to do,” Gore said. “He’s a really intellectually curious person. I really liked him right off the bat. He didn’t want to just tell me what to do. He wanted to learn what I had to tell him about making comics. He’s very creative. If his ideas are too wild, he’s really willing to listen to what makes sense story-wise. He’s really a stand-up guy. He has treated me well. I think he has learned a lot, too. His story ideas and development have really gotten better.”

Buchanon said he wanted teenaged football players in Southwest Florida to know that if they can’t make it to the NFL that there are plenty of other opportunities for them to be successful in other walks of life.

“Sometimes, when you have an idea, and you’re first trying to do things, you try to find yourself some people who have already had some success,” Buchanon said. “Luckily, I had the resources, having played in the NFL.

“Even if you don’t have the resources, you can still stick to your guns and make something happen.”

Buchanon’s comic books

Here’s a look at the plotlines for two of former NFL player Phillip Buchanon’s three new comic books, available for 99 cents each on Buchanon graduated from Lehigh Senior High School in 1999.

• The Supernals Experiment: For more than 20 years, a talented but renegade doctor has performed unprecedented medical experiments in an attempt to help the most vulnerable children imaginable. Now those children are growing up and discovering that Dr. Epstein did more than just heal their physical disabilities – he changed them, gave them powers, and made them targets for a ruthless organization bent on controlling their incredible abilities.

• New Money: When professional boxer Kameron Kash, NFL player Broderick McFadden, soccer star Mike Lion and singer/entertainer Marley White get signed to exclusive contracts...they start to make dollars, but not a whole lot of sense.

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Phillip Buchanon: NFL players learn a new skill: Avoid going broke

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Former NFL players are almost infamous for suffering from serious financial troubles after they retire. Now the league is trying to help fix the problem.

In Baltimore recently, two former NFL stars stood huddled next to each other, looking down at a colorful pair of dress socks—the latest from the Plaxico Burress Collection. Former All-Pro Giant linebacker Carl Banks nodded his approval to Burress and marveled at the quality of the socks, something Burress said he has finally perfected after months of testing out samples.

"It's time to expand now," Banks emphasized to Burress, who currently sells his collection in two New York City boutiques.

The two exchanged phone numbers and agreed to be in touch about getting Burress' product in stores catered toward the big and tall, where Banks has significant connections.

The scene? The 2014 NFL Consumer Products Boot Camp where more than 15 past and present players are learning skills they hope will last them long after their playing days.

Banks is a success story for the NFL. The former linebacker who won two Super Bowls with the Giants has transformed himself off the field into a successful businessman and president of GIII Sports By Carl Banks.

Banks is working with the NFL to help others find success off the field and help NFL players avoid going from millionaire to just another statistic.

In 2009, Sports Illustrated reported that 78 percent of NFL players face bankruptcy or serious financial stresses within two years of leaving the league. The NFL disputes this figure, saying that NFL retirees have higher income than men of similar ages in the general population.

"There's only so much room in the broadcasting booth," Banks emphasizes to the group during one of the many sessions, which teach everything from marketing to copyright patent law.

The NFL has long held boot camps (broadcasting always the most popular) but this is the first one focused on consumer products.

"This is one of a number of experiences we do to expose our players to life after playing football," said Kimberly Fields, vice president of player engagement for the NFL. "We want to arm players with the tools and resources to do wonderful things in the community."

The players attending the boot camp come from all backgrounds and levels of business experience.

"I happen to be a player that has no clue what I want to do once I'm done with football, so I thought this program would be beneficial to me," said Torrey Smith, wide receiver for the 2013 Super Bowl champion Baltimore Ravens.

For other players, the week is about learning the necessary skills to take their products to the next level.

"A few years ago we came up with an idea to come up with a potty training package," said Mike Leach, a 37-year-old long snapper for the Arizona Cardinals. "Now we're trying to get manufacturing and distribution."

Leach, a 14-year veteran, says he has become more serious about his life off the field as his window in the NFL has shortened. He's attending the boot camp with his wife and business partner Julie, who says it has been great networking and is helping to provide them with resources, ideas and knowledge to move forward with their product.

Ten-year NFL veteran Phillip Buchanon has other motivations for being at boot camp. Several years ago, a bad business deal and pressure from friends and family almost put him in financial ruin.

"I had one deal where I lost $1.6 million," he said.

Today, he's hoping to tell his cautionary tale in a book and board game aimed at players coming into wealth quickly.

"I felt like this was a way for me to give back after long nights of dealing with bad business deals," Buchanon said.

He said the boot camp has taught him about marketing and being able to take his products and brand to the next level.

"I think just being here is very encouraging and motivating for me," said Buchanon.

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Phillip Buchanon Developing A Board Game

Longtime NFL cornerback Phillip Buchanon is creating a board game to teach money management and other life skills to kids. Arizona Cardinals long snapper Mike Leach and his wife, Julie, are developing a product to help parents toilet train their toddlers. Pittsburgh Steelers receiver Plaxico Burress has introduced a line of colorful, luxury socks.

The budding entrepreneurs just need a little coaching — and not the sort involving the shriek of whistles — to assist them with such things as marketing, branding and contracts.

This Sunday, the group will join a dozen other current and former National Football League players — including Ravens' wide receiver Torrey Smith — at a four-day conference in Baltimore on getting started in consumer products sales. While the NFL has held "boot camps" on broadcasting and other topics, this is its first focusing on product pitches, and it's the first hosted by Baltimore.

The conference isn't designed only for players — such as Burress —who have already started businesses. The Burress collection includes fancy socks with names like "The Bold Stripe," "the Yacht Club" and the "the Paisley Park," each selling for $24 a pair.

"I'm hoping he brings socks for all of the (conference) participants," said former defensive back Troy Vincent, an executive with NFL Player Engagement, which provides off-the-field resources — such as the seminars — for current and former players.

For years, NFL players were often targeted for ill-advised investments. "It was good money going to bad because they were not informed," Vincent said "We lacked job readiness because we lacked the hands-on experience."

During the conference, the players will split into four teams and prepare and present a product pitch to judges, including Vincent and Henry C. Boyd III, associate chair of the marketing department at Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business.

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Phillip Buchanon Going Hollywood, Learning from ‘Dark Knight’ Producer

LANHAM, Md. (CBSDC) — A pair of former Washington Redskins are going Hollywood… or at least they’re taking some steps toward it by learning the business from some heavy hitters including the producer of The Dark Knight series.

Shaun Alexander and Phillip Buchanon, both of whom had brief stints in DC, are among 20 current and former players participating in the second annual “NFL Pro Hollywood Boot Camp.”

From March 11-15, the athletes will learn all facets of the industry, including screen writing, directing, producing, and film financing.

The players will be under the tutelage of actor/director Peter Berg (Friday Night Lights, Chicago Hope), producer Thomas Tull (The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises, Inception) and writer/actor/director Robert Townsend (The Five Heartbeats, Hollywood Shuffle). Tull is also a part-owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Among the group of players participating is former Oakland Raiders running back Justin Fargas whose father portrayed the iconic jive-talking pimp Huggy Bear on the cult television classic Starsky and Hutch. The character was later played by rapper Snoop Dogg in the 2004 film revival starring Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson.

Alexander, 35, had a cup of coffee with the Redskins in 2008, but has not played in the NFL since. In 2005, the first-round pick from Alabama was named NFL MVP after rushing for a staggering 1,880 yards and 27 touchdowns.

Buchanon, 32, also ended his 10-year NFL career in Washington where he played in 2010 and briefly in 2011.

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