After weeks of warning that the college basketball corruption scandal would involve many of the nation’s best teams and players, Duke, North Carolina, Clemson, NC State and Virginia were among at least 20 teams linked to the FBI investigation on Friday.
Records obtained by Pat Forde and Pete Thamel of Yahoo! Sports indicate that at least 25 players received impermissible benefits or had impermissible contact with sports agency ASM. And now the integrity of the entire NCAA Tournament could be compromised by the long shadow the involvement of active players casts.
Duke freshman star Wendell Carter is alleged to have had an illegal meeting/meal with Christian Dawkins, the right-hand man of former NBA agent Andy Miller. Dawkins has been indicted on federal charges while it’s believed that Miller is currently cooperating with the FBI and surrendering documentation and information.
Former North Carolina player Tony Bradley is also alleged to have had an illegal meeting/meal with Dawkins, while former Clemson star Jaron Blossomgame is accused of accepting a $1,100 Venmo payment from ASM. Blossomgame would eventually go on to sign with Miller when he turned professional before recently leaving the agency.
North Carolina State was implicated in a big way with NBA Dunk Contest participant Dennis Smith alleged to have taken $43,500 in benefits and was also loaned another $73,500 by ASM. The company included notes on recouping their investment on the loan after Smith declined to sign with the agency. Smith would go on to be drafted No. 9 overall at the 2017 NBA Draft.
Rising college basketball power Virginia was also tied to the case with former Cavaliers star Malcom Brogdon accused of also taking an illegal meeting/meal with Dawkins. Former Notre Dame star Demetrious Jackson is alleged to have done the same.
This latest development casts the widest net yet after several programs were only tacitly linked several programs to the case. Louisville coach and Hall of Fame member Rick Pitino would eventually be fired for his role in allegedly directing money from Adidas to an incoming recruit.
So it’ll be interesting to see what/if any coaching involvement there was at each of these institutions. And even if there wasn’t it, there still might be extreme NCAA and legal consequences for everybody involved.
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