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If you look up memorable quotes by Rudy Ruettiger, they exact all the inspirational feelings you can muster about “acting on your dreams.”

One of my favorites does not have such a pretty answer, now:

–If you knew you couldn’t fail, what would your goals be?

Sadly, the answer might be:

–To attempt a “pump-and-dump scheme.

Unfortunately, failure in achieving the goal, although not confirmed or denied, followed former Notre Dame football player, Daniel “Rudy” Ruettiger – the subject of the 1993 underdog movie “Rudy,” who created a sports drink company as a shell for a “classic pump-and-dump scheme.” The Securities and Exchange Commission says that the scheme bilked investors out of more than $11 million.


1. What was the penalty imposed by the SEC settlement? Discuss whether you believe this was equitable.
2. How long did the scheme last? Look at the ACFE website ( How does this compare with the length of the average pump-and-dump scheme, according to the 2010 Report to the Nation?
3. What product did the company claim to be in direct competition with? According to the article, was this the only thing that lured investors into the scheme?


Divito, N. (2011). Feel-Bad Ending for Hero of “Rudy” Movie, Courthouse News Service, Dec. 19 (Retrievable online at

Treadway, D. (2011). Rudy Ruettiger Stock Scam: SEC Files Complaint Against Subject Of Famous Sports Movie, Huffington Post, Dec. 19 (Retrievable online at