Louisville coach Rick Pitino won’t attend ACC media day Wednesday in Charlotte, North Carolina, on the advice of legal counsel, the school announced Friday.
A Louisville representative told ESPN that Pitino is “done talking” about the allegations raised by former escort Katina Powell that she was paid to provide prostitutes to strip and have sex with recruits, claims she made in her co-authored book “Breaking Cardinal Rules.”
Pitino has held multiple news conferences, did a conference call with ESPN and Yahoo! Sports after ESPN’s Outside the Lines interviewed Powell on camera and wrote about the scandal in a blog post Thursday, saying he wouldn’t resign.
“I do not want the allegations we are facing to negatively impact the other 14 institutions on what should be a great event to talk about the approaching basketball season,” Pitino said in a statement Friday. “I realize that while many would like to question me on the allegations, the NCAA does not permit me to speak on the subject.”
The Cardinals will be represented by fifth-year transfers Damion Lee and Trey Lewis. The school representative was aware that both players may be asked about the allegations but was hopeful they will be able to “talk basketball.”
Pitino has called on former assistant Andre McGee, who is at the center of the scandal as the person who set up and paid for the escorts, to tell the truth on the matter. Earlier Friday, McGee resigned from Missouri-Kansas City as an assistant coach.
An NCAA and criminal investigation are ongoing.