Former Louisville Cardinals basketball coach Rick Pitino released a statement late Friday, and it appears he is ready to face the music.
Pitino was removed earlier this week after allegations surfaced that a Louisville recruit had received $100,000 in return for a commitment.
The statement reads:
There’s been a lot of turmoil the last few days and I’ve intentionally avoided making any public statements – primarily because so few facts are known. But I wish to make a few now.
First, I want to thank all my players from Providence, UK and Louisville. Your support means more to me than I can possibly express.
Second, to the many friends and fans who reached out to me in the last few days: I owe a thousand thanks and an apology for the disappointment you must have.
Third, as I’ve previously stated, I had no knowledge of any payments to any recruit or their family. But I was the head coach and I will take ownership of my decisions. The University took the action they thought was necessary and I will do the same.
Finally, Tom Jurich is the best athletic director in the country, and thanks to him I coached Louisville basketball for over sixteen years where we witnessed many great things. From conference USA, AAC, Big East and now the ACC. I am proud of our many accomplishments and appreciate the continued support of the Louisville community. Again, a thousand thanks.
Statement from Rick Pitino pic.twitter.com/lNEi0hLvrR
— Eric Crawford (@ericcrawford) September 29, 2017
This statement is pretty much all the indication we’ll ever need that Pitino recognizes his days of coaching basketball are over. His legacy will always be of a genius coach on the court, and a man who just couldn’t shake the reputation of being a dirtbag in his private life.
We’ll probably never know the full truth about what Pitino did or didn’t know, but we can all safely assume he probably won’t ever coach a group of college kids ever again.