His mother was also convicted and sentenced to three years of probation.
The sentencing was announced October 2.
"This was not a situation where Fryar and his mother simply made a few misrepresentations on a mortgage application; they participated in an elaborate and devious scheme to defraud seven banks of more than $1 million," Elie Honig, director of the Division of Criminal Justice, said in a statement. "This was a major theft case, and it rightfully has landed Fryar in state prison."
The $1 million scheme included applications for multiple mortgages while using the same property as collateral.
Speaking to a local news station in August, Fryar argued he and his mother, Allene McGhee, were “duped” into carrying out the fraud.
The 53-year-old former first overall pick, who retired in 2000, alleged his former fraternity brother William Barksdale, who pleaded guilty to a conspiracy charge last year, told them to commit the fraud.
“My mother thought she was applying for a loan to buy a house,” Fryar told a local Philadelphia NBC news station at the time. “So he took her to multiple banks to have her apply for a loan. Mr. Barksdale told my mother, ‘You got a loan, you got a mortgage for the house, it’s at Beneficial, pay this mortgage at Beneficial.’”
Fryar said his mother made payments to Beneficial for over two years, but that the mortgage was actually with another lender, Cornerstone, which eventually foreclosed on her house.
“My mother lost her house and she was paying the mortgage on one of his other houses,” he said.
The former All-American and his mother originally rejected plea deals that would have put Fryar behind bars for five years and his mother for three.
According to authorities, the mother and son provided false wage information on applications for loans that banks eventually wrote off as losses.
Fryar told NBC10 that he and his mother never benefited from the $1.2 million the government alleged the banks lost, and claims Barksdale pocketed all the money.
Barksdale is currently serving a 20 month sentence in jail.
Former football star Irving Fryar was sentenced to five years in a New Jersey Prison, following an August conviction.