Chris Webber -- Michigan AD Warde Manuel apologized for 2003 fallout

Chris Webber, after years of conflict with his former school said that the University of Michigan made a small gesture toward reconciliation: an apology.
Webber, the Fab Five basketball star, said that Warde Manuel, Michigan's athletic director, privately apologized for how the school handled the fallout of the investigation into claims that Webber had received money from ex-booster Ed Martin.

Manuel, who was appointed as the athletic director in 2016, played at Michigan football from 1986 to 1989. He also worked for the school during the early 1990s, when Webber was playing in Ann Arbor.

Webber stated that the University of Michigan athletic director told him that he was sorry during an extensive interview at his Atlanta home before his Hall of Fame induction. He wasn't there when I was playing. He said that he had done his research and needed to apologize. He said that he needed to apologize to Chris Webber (18 years old) because he wasn't protected.

Webber pleaded guilty in 2003 to a federal criminal contempt charge and admitted, after a prior denial to grand juries, that he had repaid Martin over $38,000 for a loan he took while playing football. Martin testified that he had given Webber, and three other Michigan athletes, more than $600,000.

Michigan was granted a plea bargain and disassociated itself from Webber for ten years. This period ended in 2013. It also removed Webber's records. Webber was unable to attend the matchup between Michigan and Louisville, which took place in 2013. The disassociation forced Webber to stay in a suite.

The tension between him, the university, has diminished in recent years. He was invited by Jim Harbaugh to be on the sidelines of a Michigan football match three years ago. Webber stated that he felt emotional watching the cheers from the crowd.

Webber stated that he will talk about his experiences at Michigan in his upcoming book "By God’s Grace," which he hopes will help everyone move forward. It will be released later this year.

Webber stated that he was the one who had the most influence on the school's investigation. Webber said, "I had the largest name. That was something I knew back then. So hopefully my book will tell the story and show how it happened. We'll be able to get back to the good stuff once we have addressed all of this.

Webber's relationship to Rose, a former teammate and ESPN personality, is still unclear. Rose suggested that Webber should "apologize for" everything that had happened at Michigan in 2014. Webber also did not participate the Rose-led 2011 Fab Five documentary.

Rose and Webber had a conversation over ESPN when Webber was elected for the Hall of Fame. Webber stated that they need to have a second conversation before they can move forward.

Webber stated that there was a rift between Jalen and Webber because Jalen decided to speak, and Webber suggested that we should deal with everything behind closed doors. It was just that it was an honor system. It's a code. He knows exactly what it is because that's the basis of the Fab Five, and he didn't adhere to it multiple times. It takes only a 30-second conversation.

Webber said he didn't like the eight-year wait to be inducted into the Hall of Fame, but that it validates his decorated career. He averaged 20.7 points per game and 9.8 rebounds per games over 15 NBA seasons. Webber also won the 1994 Rookie of Year award.

He stated that he would tell his children about "Daddy being a bad man."

Webber stated that he is proud of his resilience throughout his life. Webber admitted that he couldn't stand in the locker room after calling for a timeout, which Michigan didn’t have in the final seconds in 1993’s national title game loss. Webber said that the mistake gave him an opportunity for growth.

He said, "From speaking, all of the things that I've done. I can show you so many feedback that I have received from inspiring people during the timeout." "I want people know that I didn't lose my mind during the timeout."