Brett Favre Mississippi Welfare Scandal: New Texts Revealed in Court Filing

by Nick Geddes
(Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images for SiriusXM )

A new court filing revealed Saturday that NFL legend Brett Favre pushed for the misuse of Mississippi welfare funds after being told it could be illegal.

The 62-page filing contains text messages from then Gov. Phil Bryant to Favre. Bryant warned Favre that improper use could result in violation of federal law. Favre, however, continued to push for the funds to go towards paying for new sports facilities at the University of Southern Mississippi.

“Use of these funds [is] tightly controlled,” Bryant wrote, according to the filing obtained by ESPN. “Any improper use could result in violation of Federal Law. Auditors are currently reviewing the use of these funds.”

The FBI is questioning Brett Favre after Bryant allegedly paid him $1.1 million in 2017 and 2018 for motivational speeches. The money came out of federal welfare funds meant for needy families, according to NBC News. Per the Mississippi state auditor, Favre never gave those speeches. The auditor demanded the money back with interest.

Favre repaid the fees but has yet to fork over the $228,000 in interest. His lawyer, Bud Holmes, said his client never understood the money he was paid was intended to help poor children. Favre, nor Bryant, are currently not facing any criminal charges.

Brett Favre Pushes for New Sports Facilities at Southern Miss

Per the filing, Favre texted Bryant on Sept. 4, 2019, after a meeting between the two and requested an additional $1.8 to $2 million for programs at the new facility.

“We obviously need your help big time and time is working against us,” Favre wrote. “And we feel that your name is the perfect choice for this facility and we are not taking No for an answer! You are a Southern Miss Alumni, and folks need to know you are also a supporter of the University.”

Bryant responded: “We are going to get there. This was a great meeting. But we have to follow the law. I am to[o] old for Federal Prison.”

$5 million went towards building a new volleyball facility at Southern Miss, where Favre’s daughter played the sport at the time. Mississippi Today released a new report eleven days ago showing text messages between Favre and Bryant between 2017 and 2019. The messages were filed in the state of Mississippi’s civil lawsuit over misused welfare funds. The messages provide evidence that Favre, Bryant and others worked together to channel the $5 million for the volleyball facility.

Brett Favre Requests Additional Funding

In addition, Favre pushed for an indoor football facility at the university. In a text exchange on July 28, 2019, Favre asked for the new facility to be built to help lure Deion Sanders’ son, Shedeur, to Southern Miss.

“As I suspected Deion’s son asked where the indoor facility was and I said [we] don’t have one but [we] are hoping to break ground in less than 2 years,” Favre texted Bryant. “Now that will not happen without your help/commitment!!! I know we have the Vball to complete first and I’m asking a lot with that and I believe 100% that if you can get this done Nancy will reach and help many and in the recruiting war [a new indoor practice facility] will give USM[‘s football program] instant credibility and [USM football will] become relevant again.”