Jeff Rubin says he wishes he never set foot in Alabama. That’s where a risky investment he made went bust, losing several NFL players a total of $43 million. The disgraced financial adviser gives his first interview to 60 Minutes about a debacle that became the largest financial loss ever for NFL players at the hands of one investment adviser. Armen Keteyian speaks to Rubin and some of the NFL players caught up in his bad deal on 60 Minutes, Sunday, Oct. 23 at 7:30 p.m. ET and 7 p.m. PT.
Rubin convinced his clients to invest in an entertainment and gambling development called Country Crossing that featured electronic bingo machines. Electronic bingo was later deemed illegal by Alabama Governor Bob Riley. Country Crossing was raided shortly after it opened. Given the NFL’s abhorrence of gambling, how could he get his players involved in the deal, asks Keteyian. “Armen, you’re completely correct...if I can go back in time, I wish I’d never set foot in Alabama.”
After he put his players in the Country Crossing deal, a document outlining the risks to investors included a line that specifically pointed out the electronic bingo machines could be deemed illegal in Alabama. Rubin says he doesn’t know if his players received this document. “Is that negligent?” asks Keteyian. “I don’t know...I’m not really sure...I don’t know the answer to that question...Looking at it now, it’s awful, okay? I put my trust in a lot of attorneys, just like the players put their trust in me.”
Rubin was registered by the NFL Players Association in its financial advisors program. Asked by Keteyian if anyone from the NFLPA had contacted him about the investment, he replies, “They did nothing. And not one time did we get a call, an email, a fax, a telegram, a helium balloon. We got nothing from the NFLPA in regards to this project.”
The NFLPA declined to offer anyone to speak about its financial advisors program.
Keteyian talks to former all-pro running back Fred Taylor and Washington Redskins tight end Vernon Davis, both of whom lost money in Country Crossing. What would Rubin say to these men now? “I’m sorry this happened. It’s been a disaster...that was my life.”