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U of L Athletics Association votes unanimously to fire Pitino following closed-door meeting


By Russ Brown
Kentucky Today

The University of Louisville Athletics Association has voted unanimously to fire Hall of Fame basketball coach Rick Pitino just five days after he was officially notified that he was being put on unpaid administrative leave as a result of the FBI’s investigation into corruption in college basketball.

The Association’s action came during a closed meeting Monday afternoon after the university was served with a breach of contract notice by Pitino’s attorney, Steve Pence.

“There’s always vigorous conversations,” UofL interim President Greg Postel told reporters afterwards, referring to the discussions behind closed doors. “People want to understand the situation. They want to know all the information that is available at this point so they can make an informed decision.”

The Louisville Athletics Association has voted to Rick Pitino, according to U of L interim president Greg Postel. (Kentucky Today/Tammie Brown)

The breach of contract notice alleges that UofL failed to properly notify Pitino and to give him an opportunity to respond when it placed him on leave last week, with the letter of notification being dated last Wednesday.

For UofL to fire or place Pitino on leave, his contract says it must first give him at least 10 days’ written notice of its reasons and give him a chance to “present evidence.” According to the contract, only the Athletics Association can make the decision to fire Pitino.

Postel declined to say whether he believes Pitino is “Coach-2″, who the FBI alleges in the criminal complaint had knowledge of the misconduct.”

“I’m not prepared to comment yet,” Postel said.

Postel said he plans on meeting with other coaches at UofL Tuesday and expects that some will be upset with the decision.

“I certainly understand the loyalty of these coaches,” Postel said. “I don’t hold that against them. I mean, these people know each other, they work together. . .and so I completely understand that.”

UofL is also expected to announce an interim athletics director on Tuesday.


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