CRAWFORD | Calipari on Yahoo! report: 'I know nothing more than you guys'
Kentucky coach John Calipari met with reporters for the first time after Yahoo! Sports implicated one current and two former Kentucky players from discovery documents of the federal college basketball corruption investigation.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – University of Kentucky basketball coach John Calipari met the media on Friday afternoon, hoping to talk about a young basketball team that is beginning to find itself, is coming off one of its best all-around performances of the season and is looking to build more momentum against Missouri in Rupp Arena on Saturday night.
Instead, as it did at the very outset of the season on Kentucky’s media day, the story about a federal investigation into college basketball corruption reared its head.
A story by Yahoo! Sports claims that one notation of “BAM” denotes that former Wildcat Bam Adebayo’s name showed up on a spreadsheet in discovery documents from Andy Miller’s ASM sports agency as part of the federal investigation. Those documents say that Adebayo had been given a loan for $12,000 from the agency while still in high school, and another $36,500 after.
The documents also showed that current Wildcat Kevin Knox met with a representative of the agency – which is not an NCAA violation, unless the agency gave the player or his family some benefit. Knox’s father told WLEX-18 in Lexington, Ky., this morning that he doesn’t know anything about a meeting with Miller’s company.
Calipari, who issued a statement this morning before the news conference, reiterated to reporters that he doesn’t know Miller and that he has used no agents as part of his recruiting process at Kentucky. A UK spokesman, Dwayne Peevey, said before Calipari's news conference that Calipari would not address the Yahoo! story, but he did answer a few questions, briefly, in a bit of aggravated fashion.
"I know nothing more than you guys know, and that’s why there’s no reason for me to speak on it,” Calipari said when asked a question about the story.
When asked if he's disappointed, at least, to hear this kind of news, for the game in general, Calipari said, "Yeah, for all of basketball, this stuff. But again, the statement I made is from me, where we stand on this and how we feel about it."
Asked if Knox would play in Saturday's game against Missouri, Calipari said: "At this point, I believe so. Unless (there is) something i don't know." Calipari said he had not talked to Knox about the report.
In a statement released by the school Friday morning, Calipari said: "I have no relationship with Andy Miller or any of his associates. Neither my staff nor I utilized any agent, including Andy Miller or any of his associates, to provide any financial benefits to a current or former Kentucky student-athlete. We will cooperate fully with the appropriate authorities.”
Calipari experienced a similar situation when the NCAA investigated a former player of his, Marcus Camby at Massachusetts, determining that he had taken money from an agent during his final year at the school and ordering the school to vacate its records from a Final Four season. Calipari was not found to have had knowledge of the payments in that case, and was not sanctioned by the NCAA, other than having to give up the victories that the school gave up.
In recent years, Calipari has been a frequent critic of the current NCAA model, calling on the organization and its membership to modernize its rules to allow players and their families to make more informed decisions, and to receive reasonable benefits, given the revenue they generate for the NCAA and its member schools.
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