CRAWFORD | Source: Former Louisville player told investigator of strippers in dorm
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — A former University of Louisville basketball player has given investigators a version of events that indicates strippers were in the players’ dorm on at least one occasion, a source close to the investigation told WDRB News.
With the school continuing to investigate allegations made by former Louisville escort Katina Powell in her book, “Breaking Cardinal Rules,” released last Friday, the question may now be turning from whether any of it is true to how much of it is true?
While this is only one player talking about a single event in an investigation expected to delve into four years of allegations, it does demonstrate a player acknowledging some of the claims in Powell’s book while taking issue with others. His voice, presumably, would be just one of many in the final report.
This particular player told a university investigator that no sex took place (that he knew of), and that the only money he saw changing hands came in the form of dollar bills thrown at the women in the room, according to the source, who spoke on the condition that the identities of player and source be anonymous.
The source also said that the player, who is mentioned in the book, claimed that former U of L director of basketball operations Andre McGee, who Powell says arranged multiple meetings and paid her for the services of women who had sex with recruits and some players, was not present in the room on this occasion.
According to the source, the player told investigators that he never saw McGee hand money to anyone before or after. Powell's book, however, includes text messages -- that publishers say have been authenticated -- showing McGee making various meeting arrangements with Powell, and even discussing compensation.
Chuck Smrt, president of The Compliance Group, a company based in Kansas that U of L has retained to investigate the allegations, said in an e-mail response to a question from WDRB: "Unfortunately, I will not be able to help you with any questions, even if it only relates to process."
This comes on the same day of a CBS Sports report that JaQuan Lyle, a former U of L recruit, confirmed “the gist of” Powell’s accusations with an NCAA investigator who met with him on Wednesday at Ohio State University.
McGee’s attorney, Scott Cox, reacted angrily to the report.
"How can you comment on a leak from an anonymous source from what is supposed to be a confidential interview?" Cox said in a written statement. "Who is the source of this information? What doe[s] the 'gist' mean? This is going to be a long criminal and NCAA investigation. We're not going to comment on every rumor."
U of L president James Ramsey asked for patience as U of L and the NCAA continue to investigate the allegations. He would not speak or field questions on camera, but issued a written statement.
“For the past 18 years, Tom Jurich has served as Athletic Director of an exemplary program at U of L,” Ramsey said in the statement. “I fully support Tom as we work to identify the facts in this situation, and that is what we are doing. Tom and I are committed to the values that are fundamental to the success of Cardinal athletics. . . . The investigation of the allegations may take time and we must, as one university, continue doing the work we do to move our university and our community forward.”
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