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Former NFL cornerback says mom charged him $1 million after draft

Phillip Buchanon says his mom charged him for the cost of raising him.

David Maxwell/Getty Images

After finally becoming a professional, it's not uncommon for athletes to have family members and friends try to dip into the players' newly lucrative bank accounts. Many parents of athletes end up receiving new houses or expensive cars as gifts. However, it's less common for a parent of a professional athlete to show up with a bill for services rendered, but that's exactly what happened to former NFL cornerback Phillip Buchanon, according to CBS Sports' John Breech.

Buchanon was drafted 17th overall in the 2002 NFL Draft to the Oakland Raiders. He says his mother was one of the first people to contact him after being selected, though it wasn't to congratulate her son. Instead, Buchanon's mom demanded $1 million, her estimation of how much it cost her to raise him.

Buchanon wrote about the story in his new book, New Money: Staying Rich. Here's an excerpt:

Soon after the draft, she told me that I owed her a million dollars for raising me for the past 18 years. Well, that was news to me. If my mother taught me anything, it's that this is the most desperate demand that a parent can make on a child. The covenant of having a child is simply that you give your child everything possible, and they owe you nothing beyond a normal amount of love and respect. There is no financial arrangement. If you get old and infirm, and your kids are around to help you out at that point, then you're lucky. It's not written in the social contract. The mothers and fathers of the world have been rearing their kids for generations -- in every culture imaginable -- and it's a one-way street when it comes to money. If they pay you back someday, and you really are going through hard times, then that's just a bonus, a gratuity for being a great mother or father.

Buchanon goes on to explain that while he didn't pay the $1 million, he still bought his mother a house and agreed to cover maintenance costs. When that proved too burdensome, Buchanon offered to buy his mother a smaller house or give her $15,000 in cash.

The experience proved to be an important lesson for Buchanon. While professional sports offers near instant riches, the money can disappear just as quickly. Buchanon hopes to relay that knowledge to young athletes facing similar situations today.