BATON ROUGE, La. — LSU basketball coach Will Wade responded to allegations of the NCAA investigating his “recruiting tactics” on Monday, saying he hasn’t heard from the NCAA in any way.
“Obviously I’m aware of the Yahoo Sports story last night but the facts are there’s been zero inquiries,” Wade said in the opening statement of his press conference Monday. “There’s been zero contact by the NCAA to me, my staff, our administration, our players or our school. There’s been zero contact. I’m not going to expand on that much further. I’ll just say I’m proud to represent LSU and we’re going to work very hard to bring a top-tier basketball program to our state and our school.”
Yahoo Sports published a report Sunday night that said the NCAA was looking into Wade’s recruiting tactics. Though the article also said the NCAA had no concrete evidence of any wrongdoing and the investigation had stalled, the report spawned speculation and national interest in LSU’s program.
Earlier Monday, the LSU athletic department released a statement affirming Wade’s words.
“LSU has confirmed with NCAA officials that there is no active investigation into the men’s basketball program,” the statement read. “LSU Athletics stands for full compliance and partnership with the NCAA and the SEC.”
Wade said fielding allegations such as these comes with the territory of being the coach of a major college basketball program. If he wasn’t able to take these allegations and ignore them, he wouldn’t be cut out for the job he has. That said, Wade isn’t just letting the allegations roll.
He deferred to LSU’s statement when asked if he’s certain there’s been no wrongdoing in his recruiting tactics. But he also understands how a report such as this surfaces.
“Obviously you’re disappointed,” Wade said. “But it’s the way of the world these days. You just move on. You’ve got to focus on your program and your players. We’ve got to focus on our team. The season doesn’t stop. The world doesn’t stop. I try to focus my attention on things that need it and things that I get a return on investment for it.”
As of now, that means Wade is focused on South Carolina. The Tigers travel to Columbia, S.C., to take on the Gamecocks on Wednesday night at 6:30 p.m. CT. The game will be broadcast on the SEC Network.
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