By Ken Cross
The annals of the FBI scandal which rocked the University of Louisville basketball program now house a new chapter that many suspected on Wednesday as former coach Rick Pitino stated in an interview with ESPN’s Jay Bilas that he took and passed a lie detector test which proved he had no knowledge of a pay for play scheme to lure a top recruit into his program. Pitino had been accused by the FBI of knowing of a $100,000 transaction that allegedly took place between an unnamed Louisville assistant coach and an Adidas representative to lure 5-star recruit Brian Bowen to the Cardinals.
Since this ordeal took place near the end of September, the Hall of Fame coach had suffered through the emotional distress of losing his job as the Cardinals coach after 16 years, a national championship, three Final Fours, and five Elite Eights as the Cardinals coach. Pitino noted that he “worshipped” the ground his players walked on and that separation had been a tough issue.
Rick Pitino: "I passed a lie detector test."
Watch more of his interview with Jay Bilas on SVP after the Wolves-Spurs game. pic.twitter.com/e67Lf6mE5f
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) October 19, 2017
Pitino, visably emotional in the interview, noted his newly filed law suit against Adidas as he sighted the sneaker giant for it’s role in his firing. Adidas looks now like a rogue sneaker company who acted on it’s own to steer the nation’s top basketball players toward high-profile schools sponsored by Adidas.
Pitino to Bilas in the interview and as quoted on ESPN.com: “I was asked two questions,” “And I said, ‘I want you to ask me if any other recruits in my tenure were ever given anything.’ And he said, ‘That’s not what we’re here for. We’re here for: Did you have any knowledge of the Bowen family getting any money? Did you have any knowledge of an Adidas transaction? I answered ‘absolutely not’ on both questions and passed the lie detector test. So I had no knowledge of any of this.”