Both Louisville and the NCAA are investigating the Cardinals' men's basketball program after allegations surfaced that a staff member "paid escorts to dance for and have sex with players and recruits," according to a book obtained by Yahoo Sports on Friday.
The allegations are detailed in a soon-to-be-released book titled Breaking Cardinal Rules: Basketball and the Escort Queen, which is set to be published by IBJ Book Publishing LLC as soon as this weekend. SI.com reported that the NCAA is investigating the men's basketball team for recruiting violations.
The book is written by Katina Powell, who described herself as the madam who provided women to the team -- including her own daughters -- from 2010-14 at parties at the dorm where Louisville players live. The accusations center about the hiring of an escort service revolve around Andre McGee, a former Louisville point guard who went on to become a graduate assistant and director of basketball operations for Louisville. He is currently an assistant coach at Missouri-Kansas City but has reportedly been put on paid administrative leave. The book claims to have photo proof of players with escorts. McGee has denied the allegations through a lawyer.
Andre McGee's lawyer, Scott Cox: "Andre McGee has told us that he is not guilty of these allegations."— Jeff Greer (@jeffgreer_cj) October 2, 2015
ESPN reports that the NCAA has already talked to at least one former recruit who visited Louisville. Both Louisville head coach Rick Pitino and athletic director Tom Jurich answered questions from reporters at a press conference on Friday evening. Pitino and Jurich both expressed their shock over the matter and said that they will let the NCAA investigators, as well as a private investigative team led by Chuck Smrt of the Compliance Group, do their job.
"To say I'm disheartened, disappointed, would probably be the biggest understatement I've made since I've been a coach," Pitino said.
Pitino said that he was instructed not to conduct and investigation of his own, but he said he has spoken to about 15 current and former staff members, none of whom said they had any knowledge of such actions during recruiting visits. While Pitino said he was surprised, he did not offer a complete denial.
Reporter: "Rick, you said you don't believe the allegations…" Rick Pitino: "I didn't say that." Fairly telling.— Brian Hamilton (@BrianHamiltonSI) October 2, 2015
Jurich said that Louisville was originally informed of the allegations when an associate athletic director at Indiana contacted them because a top Indiana basketball booster wanted Louisville to identify some photos. When asked if Louisville was offered money before the book was written, Jurich refused to comment.
Tom Jurich asked why, if the allegations are "false," anyone would write a book on this. Jurich's response: "Follow the money."— Matt Norlander (@MattNorlander) October 2, 2015
Jurich said that Louisville's first response upon being informed of the allegations in August was to get in touch with the NCAA, and that the goal continues to be uncovering facts and getting to the bottom of the situation.
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