Alabama booster killed after bloody struggle at Memphis home

By WOODY BAIRD, Associated Press Writer

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) - An Alabama booster convicted of bribing a high school coach to get a top recruit for the Crimson Tide was killed in his home after a fierce, bloody struggle, police said Tuesday.

Police had not confirmed the body was that of Logan Young, 65, but his defense attorney said it was the Alabama booster.

Police were not sure how he was killed, but investigators found "a lot of blood," police Sgt. Vince Higgins said.

"The nature of the attack was brutal," Higgins said. "The entire house is a crime scene."

Higgins said there were signs of a fierce struggle in the house, a two-story stone Tudor home in one of Memphis' most exclusive country club neighborhoods.

Blood spatter experts from the medical examiner's office were at the house, and investigators will use DNA testing to determine if any blood drops belonged to someone other than the victim.

Investigators don't know a motive or if the attack was related to Young's federal conviction, Higgins said. Police haven't determined how his home was entered or how many attackers there might have been.

While police waited for fingerprints and dental records to identify the body, Nashville defense attorney Jim Neal confirmed the victim was Young.

"I've had two or three calls about it, all to the same end, found killed in his home. ... I heard that there was blood everywhere," Neal said.* Higgins said Young's housekeeper found the body after she arrived for work Tuesday morning, and the pool boy told police he saw Young as he was leaving the house late Monday.

"All we can tell is (the killing) happened sometime overnight - late night or early morning," Higgins said.

Memphis police said there had not been any recent police calls to Young's address before his body was found.

Young was free pending appeal of his 2005 conviction on money laundering and racketeering conspiracy charges in a federal case involving the recruiting of defensive lineman Albert Means.

Young was sentenced last June to six months in prison plus six months' home confinement then two years' supervised release.

His attorneys had argued against any jail time because Young needed a kidney transplant and could not get proper medical care in prison. Final briefs in his appeal were to be filed July 14, according to court records.

Former high school coach Lynn Lang, who avoided jail time after pleading guilty to taking part in a racketeering conspiracy, testified against Young, saying the booster paid $150,000 to get Means to sign with Alabama in 2000.

The NCAA has said it believed Means was unaware his football talents were being brokered. The player later transferred to Memphis, where he finished his college career.

Lang testified at Young's trial that other universities, including Georgia, Kentucky, Arkansas, Memphis, Mississippi, Michigan State and Tennessee, offered him money or jobs to get Means.

No charges were filed against anyone with those schools. Three former coaches, Rip Scherer of Memphis, Jim Donnan of Georgia and Alabama assistant Ivy Williams, testified Lang was lying.

Means' recruitment became part of an NCAA investigation that led to sanctions against Alabama in 2002, costing the Crimson Tide scholarships and bowl appearances.

Attorney Tommy Gallion, who represented Williams and former Alabama assistant Ronnie Cottrell in a defamation suit against the NCAA and others, called the news tragic.

Memphis attorney Phillip Shanks was assisting Gallion on the lawsuit in May 2004 when he was attacked in his office and left unconscious. Key case documents were stolen, he said. No one was ever charged in the case.

"I have no idea who could be behind this. I was shocked that Phillip Shanks was beaten, and this was more shocking," Gallion said in a statement read by his secretary.

Cottrell said he was horrified when he heard Young had been killed.

"I couldn't believe it. Logan was a friend, and he has been through so much already. Certainly for his life to end this way was a tragedy. My prayers are just with his family right now," Cottrell said.

"I just wish more people knew him. So many people have had an opinion that did not even know Logan Young. I just wish more people did know him."

Defense attorney Robert Hutton said he last talked with Young last week and called his death a total shock and a real loss.

"He was very generous man. He was generous with people around him. A pastor of a Catholic Church, he asked for money for some program, for the roof or something, and he gave him the money. Logan wasn't even Catholic," Hutton said.


AP Sports Writers Teresa M. Walker in Nashville and John Zenor in Montgomery, Ala., contributed to this story.

(Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)