Monday, December 01, 2008

More on WJHL Fiasco

I mentioned the embarrassment of the Wisconsin Junior Hockey League yesterday, and here's a little more on that.

According to the head coach of the Rhinelander team, the league has collapsed. The Rhinelander Daggers were trying to gain admission in the Minnesota Junior Hockey League, but so far, I haven't heard anything.

I questioned yesterday whether the league's failure was due to poor planning or straight up wrongdoing on the part of the people running the league. The latter looks to be in the lead right now, with most of the blame falling on WJHL franchise director Scott Schwendeman. Said Rhinelander head coach Igor Myaskovskiy, "The guy is almost like a criminal."

Calling him almost a criminal is in fact, too kind. If you search Wisconsin Court Records, you'll find a pretty impressive rap sheet for a 26-year-old, including a lot of small claims to recover lost money, writing bad checks, and a couple bail jumping accusations.

That link is also helpful for keeping track of all the lawsuits filed against him so far in relation to the WJHL debacle. He also received a speeding ticket on September 2nd, presumably while driving away with those people's money.

It's really a shame that something like this happened. I guess the lesson here for players and parents is to be very careful when dealing with unsanctioned leagues. The WJHL was never sanctioned by USA Hockey, and according to USA Hockey, they never even talked with USA Hockey. Perhaps USA Hockey's rules and regulations for junior leagues would have kept something like this from happening.

7 comments:

Hextall for Hobey said...

I think this pretty much sums it up from the USA Hockey article:

"You're talking about a lot of money and somebody must have some pretty deep pockets," Edwards said. "But you just don't want someone making all these promises and then running away with the money."

Kramer said...

the good news for all those poor families or teams that got fleeced is that this Schwendeman guy declared bankruptcy in October of 2005 (Wisconsin BK Case No 05-20704) so even if they cannot prove up fraud on this guy (which is permanently non-dischargeable), it will be a while before he can file Chapter 7 again.

Anonymous said...

What I really would like to know is what kind of idiot parent would really think that playing in the Wisconsin Junior Hockey League would lead to a college scholarship. Picking up the castoff Wisconsin High School players is really going to bring in the fans and the scouts! The whole thing is a joke from the concept to the crook who ran the league.

Anonymous said...

put some of the UW hockey sophs. names in and their arrest records are pretty long. Guess being involved in hockey and getting arrested goes hand in hand in Wisconsin.

Eau Claire Network said...

We read about his inability to pay rink fees, but had no idea the extent that he had gone to in taking money from hopeful youth and mismanaging their hockey futures.

We've put up a website to tell others about his mismanagement at http://www.scottschwendeman.com/. Hopefully he isn't able to do this again.

Anonymous said...

Why isn't anyone talking about Rex Holdren the WJHL Player Director whom was in control of money which was paid by the players and their parents?

I was a player who was screwed over by Rex Holdren. Please look into him.

Formerly from the Saints team.

RexH said...

for those of you who are interested. This is Rex Holdren the former player director and I never had access to the money. I am more than willing to answer any questions any of you might have and I am more than willing to testify in court. For those players that were willing to sacrifice and the parents that sacrificed I would like you all to know that I also sacrificed. In the process I had my house go into forclosure, was harassed by bill collectors and now have an apartment in Wisconsin that I have to pay for. All this because I was duped just like every one else. I moved to Wisconsin to follow a dream just like the players and coaches did and like them I was left without a paycheck and a considerable amount of debt. In addition I was separated from my family for 5 months as well. I gave a lot of my time and effort to the players and coaches and many would be willing to speak for me on my behalf. It's too bad that you were lied to and bought into the deception of Schwendeman. You should verify your facts before making comments.