Louisville BB Program, Level-1 Violation
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — The NCAA has accused the Louisville men’s basketball program of committing a Level I violation with an improper recruiting offer and extra benefits and several Level II violations, including an accusation that former Cardinals coach Rick Pitino failed to promote an atmosphere of compliance.
The notice released on Monday is the completion of a two-year NCAA investigation following a federal corruption probe into college basketball. Louisville acknowledged its involvement in the investigation related to the recruitment of former player Brian Bowen II, which led to the ousters of Pitino and athletic director Tom Jurich in October 2017.
The school noted those personnel moves and other corrective measures in a statement and subsequent teleconference in which it said it takes the allegations seriously. The school has 90 days to respond.
The NCAA’s notice says the improper offer and subsequent extra benefits were provided by people it identified and defined as “representatives of the university’s athletics interests.”
The most serious violation alleged in the redacted document accuses Adidas employees James Gatto and Merl Code of offering $125,000 combined to the family of a recruit from May to September 2017. Then-Louisville assistant Jordan Fair is alleged to have provided between $11,800 and $13,500 in benefits to coach/trainer Brad Augustine, who was associated with another prospective recruit, while former associate head coach Kenny Johnson is alleged to have provided an extra benefit of $1,300.
Pitino is alleged to have violated the head coach’s responsibility for ensuring compliance by failing to conduct additional inquiries into Gatto’s recruiting assistance of a prospect and not reporting activities to the athletic department’s compliance staff.
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