As you may or may not have heard me on the recent Helmets and Heels, I defended Louisville head coach Rick Pitino as he endures the evolving recruit “sex scandal” story. But the newest addition to the Fox Sports family in Jason Whitlock hit the nail on the head when he appeared on Colin Cowherd’s radio show this week.
As a bit of background on the story, the University of Louisville’s basketball program is currently under NCAA investigation for ex-coach Andre McGee who reportedly payed for strippers and escorts to entertain athletes and potential recruits. The rumored 22 parties over four years from 2010-2014 were detailed in a new book released by the woman who ran the escort service. While she hasn’t had any “business” from the school in nearly two years, she did employ her two daughters among other women to take part in these activities and now she’s sharing her experience publicly in her book, which resulted in the NCAA investigation.
I said Tuesday on-air and on Twitter, I’m not particularly mad about this situation and was relieved to hear Whitlock’s rational and realistic comments on the subject:
In today’s social media world, people are quick to jump to conclusions with pitchforks in hand. Especially when it comes to the portion of our society who continuously attempts to make sex a taboo topic. But I commend Whitlock for having a realistic understanding of an evolving story where some in the media are fake-caring about college kids enjoying adult entertainment.
Newsflash: college kids hit up strip clubs and have sex completely on their own. And college athletes don’t need help from a university’s recruitment program to do so.
Full disclosure, I am a Louisville fan but if this scandal happened at rival Kentucky, I wouldn’t call for John Calipari to be fired without hearing the results of a full investigation. Pitino did announce on Thursday he has no plans to resign amidst the controversy and he shouldn’t.
Who really believes a Hall of Fame coach knew about a situation of this magnitude and would endorse a program that could damage his reputation long term? Some apparently do and Pitino has become an easy target in the media.
Unless Louisville authorized payments for escort services to McGee, which I highly doubt they did, I’m not going to crucify consenting adults who exchange funds for services without any physical harm being done. And I won’t condemn a woman who profits by offering her body for monetary gain. But what I will crucify and condemn is profiting off of a book based on exaggerations and assumptions.
In the words of ex-NBA player Terrence Williams, it’s a privilege to play basketball at the University of Louisville and Rick Pitino doesn’t need to pay for p*ssy to get a recruit to commit. So let’s allow the investigation to pan out before we rush to fire one of the greatest basketball coaches of all time.