Louisville head coach RIck Pitino was officially fired Monday amid FBI corruption and fraud investigation

By Scooby Axson
October 16, 2017

The University of Louisville's Athletics Association officially voted on Monday to fire men's head basketball coach Rick Pitino "with just cause" amid a federal investigation that saw 10 people arrested, accused of corruption and taking bribes, according to Jeff Borzello of ESPN.

In light of this decision, Adidas, which sponsors Louisville, released a statement saying it terminated its personal services agreement with Pitino. It was recently reported that Pitino received 98 percent of the $39 million Adidas owed Louisville from their sponsorship deal.

Pitino, 65, was placed on unpaid administrative leave last month by interim university President Greg Postel after school officials admitted they were in involved in the investigation concerning recruit bribery in an attempt to steer players to certain schools and shoe apparel companies.

On Oct. 2, the ULAA authorized Postel to start the process of terminating Pitino for cause.

The next day, Pitino received a letter from Postel informing him that he violated his employment contract and that allegations in the federal government complaint "insinuate a scheme of fraud and malfeasance'" in recruiting, which gave the school a reason to put Pitino on unpaid leave.

College Basketball
Rick Pitino’s Contract Dispute and its Potential Impact on Larger NCAA Scandal

The Department of Justice charged 10 people, including four college basketball assistant coaches, in conjunction with a corruption and fraud scheme and implicated the Cardinals program in the illegal payment of a recruit.

Pitino was not named in the federal complaint and has said he was unaware of any payment to a recruit.

Authorities say that a Louisville assistant coach planned to send $100,000 to the father of a five–star recruit, believed to be freshman forward Brian Bowen.

Pitino was already suspended for the first five Atlantic Coast Conference games of this season after an investigation into the school's escort case.

With Pitino on leave, the school named assistant coach David Padgett head coach on an interim basis on Sept. 29. The ULAA also on Monday approved a one–year, $800,000 contract plus bonuses for Padgett. 

The Cardinals open the regular season Nov. 12 against George Mason.

You May Like