Inside the Panthers

Panthers’ Greg Olsen: No regrets over failed Alabama casino project featured on ‘60 Minutes’

Carolina Panthers tight end Greg Olsen was among NFL players mentioned in a ‘60 Minutes’ report on a failed Alabama casino, but says he has no anger over the project.
Carolina Panthers tight end Greg Olsen was among NFL players mentioned in a ‘60 Minutes’ report on a failed Alabama casino, but says he has no anger over the project. jsiner@charlotteobserver.com

Carolina Panthers tight end Greg Olsen expressed no anger at the money he and dozens of other NFL players lost investing in an Alabama casino complex called Country Crossing.

Players lost a total of $43 million after the political climate in Alabama changed and Gov. Bob Riley ordered a raid of electronic bingo casinos in 2009.

Olsen’s name appeared on a document in a CBS “60 Minutes” report that aired Sunday on former NFL investment adviser Jeff Rubin, who steered players toward the Country Crossing venture.

But Olsen said he knew what he was getting into when he invested in the casino, and was able to recoup most of what he lost.

“It was a high-risk investment that a lot of us went in on. It was tangible. It existed. I stood in (the casino). I got dividends from it,” Olsen said. “And then the political culture got very heated in Alabama. The governor gave in and declared it illegal once it was up and operable. And then once it was declared illegal, it was kind of an uphill battle.”

Drew Rosenhaus, Olsen’s agent, has been linked to Rubin. But Olsen said Rosenhaus wasn’t the intermediary between him and Rubin’s failed casino investment.

Joseph Person: 704-358-5123, @josephperson

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