Emails show IU booster tried to involve Hoosier staff in book about UofL

UofL investigating book's sexual allegations involving basketball team
Updated: Mar. 19, 2016 at 1:59 AM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Within minutes of a news conference involving University of Louisville officials to address sexual allegations in an upcoming book, Indiana University released a string of emails showing that the owner of the book's publisher, a major donor to the Bloomington school, had asked athletic department staff for help verifying a photo for the book.

IU also denied any involvement in the book, the accusations, or the investigation.

An article posted Friday by the Indianapolis Business Journal detailed accusations contained in a book set to be published by IBJ Media, Inc. According to the article, the book "tells the story of Louisville stripper and escort Katina Powell." Powell claims a former UofL staffer hired her to provide strippers and prostitutes to UofL recruits. The article also noted that the publisher paid all costs to produce the book, including hiring a former reporter to write it, and promising Powell a cut of the sales in exchange for her story. The article specifies that Michael "Mickey" Maurer, an Indianapolis attorney, co-owns both the magazine and the publishing company.

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Maurer is also a major donor to Indiana University, where the law school is named for him. In an email thread released Friday night by IU, an athletic department official called Maurer "one of our all-time great IU benefactors." The thread begins with an email from Maurer to IU Deputy Director of Athletics Scott Dolson.

"Do you know your counterpart at UofL?" Maurer asked. "I have a photo and I need a player ID." Dolson forwarded the email to Kevin Miller, Executive Senior Associate Athletic Director at UofL. Miller responded to both Dolson and Maurer, adding UofL Sports Information Director Kenny Klein to the conversation.

"Guys, thanks for volunteering to help on this," Maurer replied to the entire group. "Turns out this is for a book that will not be favorable to the UofL image. I understand if you don't choose to assist but would be grateful if you do."

Dolson then sent emails to both Miller and Klein apologizing. "SORRY re the email below," the IU official wrote to Miller. "Not sure what this is, but it blindsided me."

At a news conference Friday afternoon, UofL Athletic Director Tom Jurich told reporters the email exchange was the first notice the university had about the book or the accusations.

IU sought to distance itself from the scandal shortly after it broke. The statement accompanying the release of the emails said IU officials only learned about the contents of the book once media reports surfaced Friday.

"At no time did Indiana University have contact with the NCAA on this issue, contact a member of the media or act in malice in any way towards Louisville," the statement reads. "And any suggestion contrary to these facts is false."

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