Will LSU Basketball Be Among Next Programs to Receive NOA from NCAA?
It's a glaring problem that has hovered over the LSU basketball program for well over a year and according to Sports Illustrated national writer Pat Forde, the chickens might be coming home to roost.
The NCAA issued a warning to all programs cautioning to avoid any semblance of recruiting during the "dead period" enacted by the NCAA as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak. In Forde's report, Vice President of Enforcement Jon Duncan revealed that there is strong evidence that recruiting has continued.
“We are mindful of the circumstances and challenges on campus,” Duncan said. “But at the same time, we’re obligated to keep the infractions process moving.”
Also in the report, Duncan revealed that investigations are still ongoing for a "small number" of men's basketball programs that are expected to be slapped with NOA's (Notice of Allegations). While those investigations could take weeks to be finalized, LSU is expected to be one of those remaining schools along with Arizona, Louisville and Alabama.
“We will keep the cases moving,” Duncan said, while remaining respectful of the pandemic-related hardships universities are facing."
The Tigers have been in the NCAA cross-hairs for over a year after numerous reports about wire tapped phone conversations between LSU coach Will Wade and middleman Christian Dawkins, eventually led to Wade's suspension at the end of the 2019 season.
Those tapes are reportedly going to be played in an upcoming HBO documentary titled "The Scheme," which Forde was able to get an advanced copy of.
"The audio—some of which was not entered into federal court and has never been heard before—will provide pertinent, first-hand information for NCAA investigators working to finalize cases involving LSU and Arizona," Forde wrote. "Much of that information comes from the mouths of the coaches themselves. That’s a significant development."
“Just the audacity, you’ve got to take your hat off to him, bro. … Will Wade is definitely a f------ gangster for what he did,” Dawkins reportedly says of Wade in the documentary.
And if you think Duncan and the NCAA won't be tuned on March 31 you'd be sorely mistaken.
"Duncan said his Enforcement representatives will be watching and taking notes from the HBO documentary," Forde reported.
How LSU plans to handle the aftermath of the documentary remains to be seen but it seems likely that infractions are imminent. The only question is will it leave the program in shambles when it's all said and done.