A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Sea of scandals finally engulfed Pitino, forced Louisville administration into action

By Mark Maynard Kentucky Today The ground has been sinking from Rick Pitino’s feet for some time. We all knew it. We saw it. We didn’t want to believe it. But now we do. It all caved in on him Wednesday, buried in a scandal this time of which it appears there’s no escape. Interim President Gregory Postel put him on unpaid administrative leave and that’s just a precursor to the university ending...

Louisville’s ‘dark day’ may not be limited to just the departures of Pitino, Jurich

By Russ Brown Kentucky Today While the fate of Louisville Athletic Director Tom Jurich and basketball coach Rick Pitino is widely known following Wednesday’s suspension announcement, there could be more to come for other as of yet unnamed parties from Tuesday’s federal investigation. Jurich and Pitino were placed on administrative leave on a “dark day” for Louisville, interim president Gregory...

Louisville places Pitino, Jurich on administrative leave in wake of federal bribery allegations

University of Louisville head men’s basketball coach Rick Pitino and long-time athletics director Tom Jurich have been placed on administrative leave following allegations of bribery resulting from an investigation by the U.S. Attorney’s Southern District office in New York and the FBI. The announcement was made Wednesday afternoon during a news conference conducted by Louisville interim...

Still reeling from sex scandal and NCAA probation, things get worse for Louisville basketball

By Russ Brown Kentucky Today Just when you thought it couldn’t get any worse for the beleaguered University of Louisville basketball program. . . U of L, still reeling from NCAA penalties because of sex parties and facing the prospect of having to vacate its 2013 national championship and 2012 Final Four, could now be dealing with a much more serious issue. Coaches for a school that appears to...

Could Rick Pitino’s roller-coaster tenure at Louisville soon be coming to a shameful end?

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Like many of you, I admired Rick Pitino and his ability to lead Kentucky from probation to jubilation during his tenure as coach of the Kentucky Wildcats. He was a rock star in the Bluegrass and he knew it. Charged to lead the Wildcats back to the promise land following NCAA violations during the end of the Eddie Sutton era, Pitino was a breath of fresh air and the right...

Louisville among college basketball programs accused of bribery in wake of FBI investigation

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today NEW YORK – The University of Louisville basketball program is apparently named in a federal criminal complaint, alleging a bribery scheme involving coaches, advisors and agents, along with a major sports apparel company. Four assistant college coaches are among 10 charged in the complaint, which was unveiled on Tuesday by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern...

Louisville finalizes game times, broadcast details for 2017-18 men’s basketball schedule

Additional game times and television designations have been added to complete the 2017-18 University of Louisville men’s basketball schedule. Since the initial schedule release on Sept. 7, seven game times have been added and television designations included. A pair of home games were selected to be televised by the ACC’s group of regional sports networks (RSN), including Nov. 12 vs....

ESPN documentary series SEC Storied shines spotlight on inspirational career of C.M. Newton

Featuring one of the towering figures in Southeastern Conference history, the latest chapter in ESPN Films’ SEC Storied series is “Courage Matters – The C. M. Newton Story.” Premiering Tuesday, Sept. 26 at 9 p.m. ET on SEC Network, the film explores the story of Newton’s influence on the basketball world, a career spanning seven decades as an innovator and an advocate for the advancement...

Cardinals’ men’s basketball schedule filled with teams from 2017 NCAA Tournament field

Appearances in three special early season events, at least 19 games on national television and 21 home games in the KFC Yum! Center highlight the demanding 2017-18 University of Louisville men’s basketball schedule during its fourth season in the Atlantic Coast Conference. A total of 21 of the Cardinals’ 31 games will be played against teams that participated in post-season competition...

Billy Reed: ‘Strippergate’ is repugnant but so are NCAA’s Draconian penalties against UofL basketball

The head of the NCAA Committee on Infractions described the “Strippergate” scandal at the University of Louisville as “repugnant,” and I don’t know of anybody who would disagree with that. Unfortunately, however, that same description may be applied to the Draconian penalties the NCAA has levied against Coach Rick Pitino’s basketball program. Simply put, the punishment exceeds the transgressions....

NCAA lowers the boom on UofL basketball program; vacating 2013 national championship a possibility

By Russ Brown KyForward correspondent LOUISVILLE — If University of Louisville fans want to get one last look at the Cardinals’ 2013 NCAA championship and the 2012 Final Four banners that are hanging in the KFC Yum! Center, maybe a tour of the facility this summer would be in order. Because the banners might not be there by the time the 2017-18 season gets underway. That is the worst-case...

Keith Taylor: College basketball one part of Kentucky’s rich and deep heritage

Happy birthday, Kentucky. Once considered a part of Virginia, the Bluegrass State celebrates its 225th birthday as a Commonwealth Thursday. This state has plenty to acknowledge since its existence began more than two centuries ago when it became the 15th settlement to join the union. John Calipari has returned Kentucky to the forefront in college basketball (Keith Taylor Photo) Known traditionally...

Cards’ 2018 prospects get a big boost from Adel’s decision to ditch NBA draft, Pitino says

By Russ Brown KyForward correspondent LOUISVILLE — What does the return of Deng Adel for his junior season mean for the University of Louisville basketball team? Plenty, especially with the loss of sophomore Donovan Mitchell, who decided to stay in the NBA draft and hired an agent. Adel now becomes the centerpiece of the Cardinals’ 2017-18 club, whose strong returning nucleus will undoubtedly...

Louisville junior forward Johnson giving up eligibility to enter upcoming NBA Draft

University of Louisville junior forward Jaylen Johnson will forego his final collegiate season, hire an agent and seek a career in professional basketball. “After a lengthy conversation with Coach P I have decided to hire an agent and forego my senior year,” said Johnson. “I will miss my teammates and coaches, but it is really important that I help out my mom and family. I’m...

Billy Reed: Heels deserved to win, but with NCAA inquiry still unresolved, should they be in Final Four?

LOUISVILLE – North Carolina deserved its victory over Kentucky yesterday in a riveting college basketball game that went right to the end before being decided. The Tar Heels of Coach Roy Williams now will move on to next week’s NCAA Final Four in Phoenix, where they’ll be favored to win its sixth national title since the NCAA began sponsoring the tournament in 1939. But I have a question: Should...

NCAA stands by allegations that Louisville’s Pitino should have known about improper activity

The NCAA is standing by its allegations against the Louisville men’s basketball program and Rick Pitino, saying the coach failed to notice “red flags” in activities by a former staffer who an escort says hired dancers for sex parties with recruits and players. “If Pitino saw no red flags in connection with (Andre) McGee’s interactions with then prospective and current...

Looking Ahead: Mitchell’s return could be a key for Cards as plenty of veterans, top recruits raise hopes

By Russ Brown KyForward correspondent LOUISVILLE — Donovan Mitchell sat in front of his locker in Bankers Life Fieldhouse in downtown Indianapolis Sunday afternoon patiently answering questions while trying to process the fact that Louisville’s college basketball season had ended three games short of its NCAA Final Four goal. “This hurts. This sucks,” Mitchell said. “We...

‘Career day’ by Michigan’s Wagner leaves Louisville on the outside looking in at NCAA Tournament

By Russ Brown KyForward correspondent INDIANAPOLIS — Here is Louisville forward Jaylen Johnson’s evaluation of Michigan center Moritz “Moe” Wagner: “He’s going to have a great career.” Uh, Jaylen, he already did. “Wagner had a career day,” said UofL’s Deng Adel. “He was a nightmare matchup for us.” And those nightmares are liable...

Cards will try to cool off hot-shooting Michigan with a trip to the Sweet Sixteen on the line

By Russ Brown KyForward correspondent The last time Louisville and Michigan met, it was for the national championship. This time the stakes aren’t quite as high, but they’re high enough, with each team needing a victory to keep this year’s title hopes alive. UofL (25-8), the No. 2 seed in the Midwest Regional, dispatched No. 15 Jacksonville State (20-15) 78-63 in Bankers Life Fieldhouse...

Billy Reed: Congrats to Norse for milestone, but do any of the regionals have a shot to make Final Four?

It’s a terrific achievement for Northern Kentucky University to make the NCAA Division-I Basketball Tournament the first year its team is eligible. But I also wonder what the commonwealth’s other regional universities are thinking right now about the future of their D-I basketball programs. Unlike Kentucky and Louisville, the regional universities do not have self-sustaining athletics programs...