LSU basketball coach Will Wade won’t be fired after audio of him appearing to discuss payment for a recruit aired in the HBO documentary “The Scheme.”
Wade was put on leave a couple seasons ago with the Tigers as he was investigated for possible NCAA infractions amid the FBI college basketball corruption scandal. The young coaching star eventually returned, and he was never found guilty of breaking NCAA rules. (RELATED: David Hookstead Is The True King In The North When It Comes To College Football)
However, audio dropped in “The Scheme” of Wade talking about a “strong ass offer” for Javonte Smart, and it’s pretty damning.
The existence of the comments hasn’t ever been a secret, but hearing the conversation between Wade and Christian Dawkins is wild. You can listen to it below.
— NBA Syndicate (@NBAsyndicate) April 1, 2020
Despite the audio appearing to show Wade causing major problems, LSU released a statement Wednesday that “there is no change to Coach Will Wade’s employment status at LSU and we will continue to cooperate with all reviews into this matter.”
LSU athletic director Scott Woodward’s statement on “The Scheme:”
“We are aware of the documentary first aired on March 31, 2020, on HBO. There is no change to Coach Will Wade’s employment status at LSU and we will continue to cooperate with all reviews into this matter.”
— Amie Just (@Amie_Just) April 1, 2020
I’ve only watched a little bit of “The Scheme,” and I haven’t even gotten to the audio tape of Wade yet. What I will say is, I’m not sure how Wade would defend those comments.
It’s probably best if he just doesn’t acknowledge their existence because they’re pretty clear. Look, college programs cheat all the time.
Paying players has been around for years, and it probably won’t ever stop. However, getting caught on a wiretap is not a good look.
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The good news for Wade is that the Tigers seem committed to keeping him. He’s one of the best young coaches in all of college basketball, and you have to weigh allegations against winning.
Right now, the Tigers are riding with Wade, and I respect the move to just flip the middle finger to the whole world. They want to win and they’re open about it.