The following statement was authored by Steve Pence and distributed to media:
Coach Pitino was not aware of, and did not participate in, any payment to any recruits or their families. The recent indictment return in New York does not allege that Coach Pitino was aware of, nor that he participated in, any payment to any recruits or their families. Reports to the contrary are false, misleading & defamatory.
The only mention of Coach Pitino in the indictment is a single statement by defendant Dawkins, who boasted that he had communicated with Coach Pitino about the scheme concocted by him and his co-conspirators. Dawkins made a similar boast about communications with a coach at the University of Miami. But these statements by Dawkins are wholly uncorroborated, inconsistent with other proof and, more importantly, false.
Had Dawkins communicated with Coach Pitino, the FBI wiretap & phone records would have captured the conversation. They didn’t. All indications are that Dawkins’ practice was to drop the name of a well-known coach to enhance his stature with his co-conspirators, in order to convince them to give him more money. The compliant and indictment bear this out.
Coach Pitino has fully cooperated with the government’s investigation and will continue to do so. It is irresponsible for any entity to exaggerate or contort the facts to make it appear that Coach Pitino had any role in this conspiracy, when in fact he did not. There simply is no legitimate interest served by any entity (government or otherwise) publicly smearing an individual when that individual has not been provided a forum in which to vindicate his rights. This applies to all citizens, including Coach Pitino.
Coach Pitino stands by his previous statement: He has never allowed or known of any payments to any of his recruits or their families during his entire college coaching career at Boston University, Providence, the University of Kentucky, and the University of Louisville.
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