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Ex-star QB Young files for bankruptcy

By Lance Davis ·
Friday, January 24, 2014
Posted: 5 pm ET

© Geoff Nelson Shutterstock.comDespite gargantuan contracts and endorsement deals, professional athletes often find themselves in financial straits.

Add Vince Young to that list. Young, the former University of Texas and NFL quarterback with seemingly limitless potential, is now bankrupt.

The 30-year-old recently filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, according to the Houston Chronicle. The petition estimates Young's assets to be between $500,001 and $1 million, with liabilities between $1,001,000 and $10 million.

Young made $34 million in six pro seasons and an additional $30 million in endorsement deals with Reebok, Madden NFL 08 video game and the National Dairy Council.

The Tennessee Titans picked Young third overall in the 2006 draft and signed the college star to a five-year contract with $25.7 million guaranteed and the potential to reach $58 million with options and bonuses.

Young is mired in two lawsuits stemming from a $1.8 million loan taken out in his name during the 2011 NFL lockout. Pro Player Funding, the New York company that made the loan, has been unable to collect the debt, which has grown to more than $2.5 million with interest.

Young’s former financial adviser said under oath that he arranged the loan for Young because the QB wanted to throw himself a $300,000 birthday party. Young claims he never saw the money and that his agent and financial adviser defrauded him out of the funds.

It can be difficult for some to sympathize with highly compensated individuals who find themselves in financial ruin, but being a pro athlete has its costs -- paying agents, jock taxes, expectations from family and friends for financial support, and the pressure to fit the pro lifestyle.

It's not uncommon for athletes to file for bankruptcy. Young joins a long list of former NFL players to file, including Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick, Hall of Famers Lawrence Taylor and Warren Sapp, and ex-quarterback Mark Brunell.

A report cited in Sports Illustrated in 2009 found that 78 percent of former NFL players have gone bankrupt or are under financial stress after two years of retirement.

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January 29, 2014 at 5:00 pm

There is no excuse for this! He should be disqualified from bankruptcy. There are people that will not make what he makes in a year in their lifetime! This is plain wrong!

January 24, 2014 at 9:42 pm

One of the best articles I have read in a while. Just goes to show that problems don't disappear with more money, they just get more expensive.

January 24, 2014 at 9:00 pm

Very interesting and well written article. Amazing how easily wealth can be lost! Like winning the lottery and not being able to manage the new found wealth.