Some fans who bought college gear from pro player say they didn’t get it

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) —Sports enthusiasts say a professional football player for a Houston team is not holding up his side of the deal after they purchased some of his old gear online.

Before Mark Thompson played for the Houston Roughnecks in the UFL, he was a University of Florida Gator. He’s been selling some of his old Gator gear online.

“Selling Gator Football memorabilia if you see something you want let me know I’ll DM you and we can work out a price. Everything in this chest is extra, I’ve already framed and put what mattered the most to me in safe places,” Thompson wrote on Jan. 22 in a post on X, formerly known as Twitter.

That post also included a video of Thompson showcasing a box of cleats, socks, and jerseys that he is selling.

“Some of these cleats have never been worn,” he said in the video. “See, gloves like these is collectors’ items, like you can’t get these gloves anymore. I’m like almost positive.”

Now, some fans who have sent Thompson money for his old gear say he did not deliver what they paid for.

Eric Joyner, who lives in Plant City, Florida, jumped at the chance to buy some of Thompson’s old gear.

Direct messages Joyner shared with 13 Investigates showed he and Thompson reached a deal back in January for two pairs of receiver gloves, one for $200 and the other for $150.

On Jan. 23, Joyner asked Thompson if he could get shipping included in that price.

That same day, Thompson messaged back, saying, “Honestly if you’re in Florida or along the east coast of the US I could bring them to you.”

Joyner sent Thompson $350 through CashApp but says he never received the items.

Another Gator fan, Joshua Rittenour, contacted 13 Investigates from Pensacola.

Rittenour said he made two deals for gear with Thompson and paid him $570 via PayPal and $130 through CashApp.

“I’m the vintage Gator guy. I buy, sell, collect everything,” Rittenour said.

He said he never received the items.

Paul Lively from Tampa showed us direct messages where he agreed to pay Thompson $560 for two towels, two gloves, and one pair of cleats.

“It was a chance for me to help him and me get a piece of Gator history,” Lively said.

Lively said after he finished paying Thompson in February, he just received one Gator towel and a pair of black cleats he didn’t want.

“I was supposed to be getting actual blue and orange, like Gator cleats,” Lively said.

13 Investigates reached out to Thompson over social media, and he told us on April 8, “I’m handling it. Just slow to go.”

Thompson also said on April 12, “Let them have their 15 minutes of fame. That’s all they’re looking for at this point.”

In a message on May 3, Thompson said, “Paul Lively got what he paid for!”

But, all three Gator fans we spoke with said what they really want back is their money.

Joyner said after 13 Investigates contacted both Thompson and the Houston Roughnecks for this story, the $350 he paid for merchandise he never received was refunded.

“I accepted a return of the $350, you know, interest-free that he got from me,” Joyner said.

Rittenour said he was able to file a claim with PayPal, which reimbursed him $570. He still wants a refund for the $130 he sent through CashApp.

Lively says he has not been refunded yet but definitely wants his money back.

None of the individuals who reached out to us said they filed a police report.

After 13 Investigates reached out to the Roughnecks, they sent us a statement from the United Football League.

“The UFL is aware of certain informal complaints involving Mr. Thompson, and we have requested that he address these complaints immediately,” Jeff Altstadter, the VP Communications at the UFL, said in the statement.

For updates on this story, follow Kevin Ozebek on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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