LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - UofL says that the NCAA is attempting to turn a federal fraud conviction “on it’s head.” The university’s response to the NCAA Notice Allegations claims that UofL officials did not know and were not party to the pay for play scheme that Adidas officials were responsible for.
UofL points out that athletic director Tom Jurich, head basketball coach Rick Pitino and assistant coaches Kenny Johnson and Jordan Fair are all no longer with the school.
Their response claims that Johnson’s contention that he never made any payment to the family of recruit Brian Bowen should be believed over Bowen’s fathers testimony that he received $1300 from Johnson. UofL says Johnson’s story has been consistent while Bowen’s has changed, and that Johnson’s bank records do not indicate a withdrawal at the time of the alleged payment.
Fair, while guilty of attending a meeting in which an AAU coach was offered money by Adidas, was not a participant, according to UofL, and was only guilty of not reporting the meeting to UofL officials. At most, according to UofL, a Level II violation.
Pitino, UofL claims, did monitor his program and promote an atmosphere of compliance.
UofL says the investigation and national attention has already resulted in a decline in ticket sales, sponsorships, donations and revenue.
The biggest factor working against UofL figures to be that the school was already on probation for the Andre McGee-Katina Powell case, which could magnify even minor violations.
“The next step, the NCAA’s reply to Louisville’s response is due in 60 days,” WAVE 3 News Cardinal Insider Jody Demling said. “That puts us at November 15. Following the NCAA’s reply, Louisville would then have 15 days to request that the case be heard by the NCAA’s committee on infractions or that it be submitted to the new Independent Accountability Resolution Process. When will all of that be finished? We’re still not sure. Coach Chris Mack said last week he doesn’t expect it to affect this coming season. I think it could still be a ways away, but right now we’re one step closer to the end.”
The end of what has been five years of NCAA scandal.
The big question, is another postseason ban in play?
UofL is not alone in this fight. Many other schools, including Kansas and NC State, are making similar arguments.