Louisville coach Rick Pitino released a statement denying any knowledge of wrongdoing after it became public that his program was under FBI investigation after a player allegedly accepted a $100,000 bribe to attend Louisville.
"These allegations come as a complete shock to me," Pitino said in the statement. "I agree with the U.S. Attorneys (sic) Office that these third-party schemes, initiated by a few bad actors, operated to commit a fraud on the impacted universities and their basketball programs, including the University of Louisville. Our fans and supporters deserve better and I am committed to taking whatever steps are needed to ensure those responsible are held accountable."
Officials are investigating a claim that a sporting goods brand official (Adidas) paid a top recruit to attend Louisville and represent his brand in the NBA.
The prospect supposedly committed to the University on or about June 3, "or almost immediately after the illicit bribe scheme." The only prospect who fits this description is Brian Bowen, who is a freshman at Louisville this season and was a five-star recruit.
Assistant coaches from four other schools have been charged for similar corruption. No one from Lousiville has been charged, but the investigation is ongoing.
Pitino is already suspended for Louisville's first five Atlantic Coast Conference games for his involvement in the program's escort service scandal. A woman alleged that a former Louisville staffer hired strippers for sex parties with players and recruits and subsequently charged the school with four Level 1 violations including one against Pitino. The program was also hit with scholarship reductions and four years of probation.
The university released a statement after the latest investigation went public.
“UofL is committed to ethical behavior and adherence to NCAA rules; any violations will not be tolerated,” Louisville interim president Gregory Postel said. “We will cooperate fully with any law enforcement or NCAA investigation into the matter.”