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College Basketball: Louisville head coach Rick Pitino placed on administrative leave

NCAA Basketball Tournament - Second Round - Michigan v Louisville Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images

After yet another scandal, Louisville Cardinals men’s basketball head coach Rick Pitino has been placed on unpaid administrative leave, effectively immediately. Louisville Interim President Greg Postel announced the news at a press conference.

Postel also said that Pitino’s employment will be “reviewed at a later date.” The only likely reason that Pitino hasn’t been officially relieved of his duties yet is that there is a clause in his contract that states he must have 10 days notice prior to being fired, per ESPN.

Athletic director Tom Jurich was also placed on administrative leave, but he will reportedly continue to be paid.

This was expected, after news broke yesterday about a bribery and coruption investigation being conducted by the FBI, in which 10 men, including four NCAA basketball assistant coaches and an Adidas executive, were charged with using large sums of money to bribe and influence star recruits when choosing a school, shoe sponsor, etc.

So where does Louisville fall in all of this? There was a FanPost written on this topic yesterday, but basically the aforementioned Adidas executive — Jim Gatto — was accused of funneling about $100,000 to the family of an All-American high school basketball player.

From the above article, CBS Sports’ Gary Parrish had this to say on the subject:

“Jim Gatto, director of global sports marketing for Adidas Basketball, was also among those arrested. He's accused of helping funnel approximately $100,000 to the family of an ‘All-American high school basketball player’ to secure the prospect's commitment to a school Adidas sponsors. According to documents, the prospect committed in June. The only ‘All-American high school basketball player’ who committed to a school Adidas sponsors in June is Brian Bowen. He's now enrolled at Louisville.”

Bowen is a Saginaw, Michigan native and he was big target for Tom Izzo and the Michigan State basketball program throughout 2017.

Now, 247Sports is reporting that the five-star prospect has been removed from Louisville basketball team activities. ESPN reports that Bowen has been suspended indefinitely.

Pitino was a 2013 Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame inductee. He has won two national championships and been to seven Final Fours. But Pitino’s success on the court has often been overshadowed by numerous allegations, scandals and sanctions — most recently regarding violations involving players receiving sexual favors, which was set up by a former staff member.

Louisville will work as quickly as possible to find an interim solution at head coach and athletic director.