Former Football Standout Indicted in Teacher Test Scandal

By Bill Dries

Former Melrose High School and University of Tennessee football standout Cedrick Wilson is the latest person charged in a teacher test cheating scandal.

Wilson was indicted Tuesday, Oct. 30, by a Memphis federal grand jury on four counts of conspiracy, wire fraud and social security fraud.

He is the 14th person charged in the federal investigation of a scheme in which other people were paid to take PRAXIS teacher exams in the names of others in order to get or keep certification as teachers in several school systems in the Memphis area including Memphis City Schools.

Clarence Mumford Sr., of Memphis, a former assistant principal at Humes Middle School, is the alleged ringleader.

Wilson, who played professional football for the Pittsburgh Steelers and San Francisco 49ers, allegedly paid Mumford to have someone take two PRAXIS exams for him in 2009 in Helena, Ark., so he could become certified as a physical education teacher in the Memphis City Schools system.

“While Mr. Wilson’s status as a former professional athlete afforded him a unique opportunity to be a mentor to students, his actions, as described in today’s indictment, should serve as a stark reminder that no one is above the law,” said U.S. Attorney Ed Stanton, in a written statement.

Prosecutors say the scheme spanned 15 years, starting in 1995, and involved more than 50 teachers.