BOZICH | Katina Powell's attorney waiting for apology -- but doesn't expect it
Larry Wilder, the attorney for Katina Powell, said that one apology was missing from the University of Louisville's press conference on Thursday.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — Apologies flowed during the University of Louisville’s press conference about the basketball program’s four Level One violations of NCAA rules Thursday.
An apology that rules were broken. An apology that strippers and prostitutes were determined to be in the basketball dorm. An apology to fans who had to endure a March without their favorite basketball program participating in the NCAA Tournament.
Was anybody overlooked?
Larry Wilder, the attorney for Katina Powell, believes so.
Katina Powell's book, “Breaking Cardinal Rules,” led to this mess surrounding the U of L program. The NCAA said the investigative report said that at least 17 then men’s basketball prospective and/or current student athletes, two non-scholastic coaches one friend were provided impermissible inducements and/or extra benefits in the form of adult entertainment, sex acts and/or cash at Billy Minardi Hall.
Which was the point of Powell’s book.
“What I missed was an apology from coach (Rick) Pitino for saying those horrible things about her for her veracity,” Wilder said. “If you’re going to ask for amends, and they’re asking for amends from this community, and they’re talking about truth-seeking, and they want the truth to now be a part of the program, Katina precipitated the truth …
“Coach Pitino said, ‘How can this woman who can barely put two sentences together have written a book? You can’t believe her.
“That’s hurtful. That’s mean-spirited — and it’s not true because she was telling the truth.”
Here is the actual Pitino quote from a story in January:
“When Kenny Klein and John Carns went up there (to Indianapolis) to this book company to find out what’s going on . . . The statement was made, ‘You mean to tell me this person kept a four-year log of everything that was going on? Wrote a journal about this?’ (Answer) No, no, we wrote it. She can’t complete two sentences the right way to write a book. That was said (by the publishers). Is that the way it was said? (Turning to Klein, who said, somewhat, yes. That’s about what was said.)
“So you mean to tell me a book was written, a four-year record was kept? There was no four-year record. You’ve got to be kidding me.”
Today, while Powell’s claims are not confirmed to the letter by the NCAA’s allegations, the bulk of them do appear now to be very much based in reality.
Does Wilder expect an apology?
“Absolutely not,” he said. “He’s not built that way. That’s OK.”
Wilder said that Powell watched the U of L press conference Thursday but the attorney declined to say if his client was in Louisville. He said that Powell has a job and would prefer to move forward with her life.
“She is making a living and paying taxes,” Wilder said. “The thing about Ms. Powell is this. She has moved on. She knew she was being honest about the things she was being honest about.
“You don’t have to embrace what she did (prostitution) and say it’s OK. She was honest about what occurred from the beginning.”
Wilder said that he was not surprised by the contents of the NCAA report. Wilder said that he hoped the athletic department would embrace a culture where somebody who said something critical of one of its programs would not be attacked.
“There’s a certain part of me, because I’m old and Tom Cruise is from Louisville, that makes me want to say they couldn’t handle the truth at the outset,” Wilder said.
“They chose to not handle the truth. The truth has been shoved down their throat.
“Only after it was shoved down their throat because they chose to ignore the facts that were clear, they now are going to embrace the truth and say it’s going to make it a better university.
“I hope that’s true because I’m a graduate of the University of Louisville Law School.”
Copyright 2016 WDRB Media. All Rights Reserved.