Pat Forde and Pete Thamel both have been hinting at a bombshell about to be dropped on college basketball and some of the game’s biggest programs, coaches, and players would be implicated.
The details have finally been released and while they’re not good, it’s not as bad as some had feared. Thamel and Forde were playing up a college basketball apocalyptic doomsday scenario and the truth is that this situation is far from that.
How is Kentucky affected by this?
A listing that refers to “BAM” for $12,000 is later identified in the documents as Edrice “Bam” Adebayo, who would go on to play at Kentucky in 2016-17. He did not sign with ASM. There’s a later reference to Adebayo that says he received $36,500. “Bad loan,” reads the document.
Among the players and/or families who are listed as meeting with or having meals with Dawkins:
Current Kentucky player Kevin Knox.
Clearly Andy Miller was less than happy that Bam ended up not signing with him once he declared for the NBA.
Nerlens Noel was listed as being granted a loan for a little over $4,000 but it was unclear when that occurred.
The good news: it appears as if that if money indeed did exchange hands, it was between players and the ASM agency run by Andy Miller. Neither Kentucky nor John Calipari are mentioned in the report.
The difference between this and the scandal going on with Adidas and the University of Louisville is that Rick Pitino and assistant coach Jordan Fair are specifically named in federal documents.
The bad news: Bam Adebayo’s eligibility could be affected by this. If the documents are true and Bam did receive that amount of money, then he could be ruled ineligible and that could jeopardize the 2016/2017 season.
Kexin Knox’s situation is less serious. There’s no indication that money was exchanged. It’s not illegal by NCAA standards for players to meet with agents. It’s unclear if the agency paid for Knox’s meal. If that did occur, then, depending on the cost of the lunch, Knox would have to pay the money back or donate it to charity.
I’m not concerned about Knox or Noel in the least. Bam’s situation is completely different and does warrant concern.
Other big time players implicated in the report are Josh Jackson, Miles Bridges, Wendell Carter, Markelle Fultz, and Diamond Stone. Programs vary as big as Duke and Kentucky to as small as Creighton and Wichita State.
The NCAA has a major problem on its hands and it will be interesting to see how exactly they wade through it. This issue is convoluted and complex without an easy solution in sight.
John Calipari will meet with the media today to talk about the Cats’ upcoming game against Missouri but something tells me that’s not where the questions will be directed.
Check A Sea of Blue for more updates and this unfolds. It’s far from over.