Waking up to the news that three Kentucky players were listed in documents obtained by the FBI was jarring to say the least, but after a deep breath and an hour to digest the story, I’m not nearly as panicked as I was when my phone went off this morning. Let’s break down the facts of what has been released and what to focus on going forward.
Nerlens Noel, Bam Adebayo, and Kevin Knox are all listed on financial documents from ASM Sports (Andy Miller’s agency).
- Nerlens, who briefly employed Miller as his agent, is listed as taking a $4,350 loan
- Bam is listed as taking a $12,500 loan, but did not sign with ASM. In a separate document, he is listed as being a “bad loan” with a $36,500 monetary amount.
- Kevin Knox is one of several players listed on an expense report as meeting or having a meal with former ASM associate Christian Dawkins.
The immediate concern is Knox
It’s important to point out that players are allowed to meet with agents; however, they are not allowed to accept money from them or have those agents pay for their meals. Yahoo did not post the actual expense report from Dawkins listing Knox, so it’s unclear who paid. If Knox did let Dawkins buy him a meal, it’s a violation and he could repay it and regain his eligibility; however, no one knows how the NCAA will handle any of this. Also, did UK already know about this, and if so, did they disclose it to the NCAA before the season began?
The big question now becomes…
Will Knox play tomorrow?
If he does, UK must be confident everything checks out. If not, there may be something there.
Bam’s involvement is by far the worst
According to these documents, Bam accepted either $12,500 or $36,500 from ASM, which was by their description a “bad loan” because he didn’t sign with the agency. Obviously, this is a way bigger deal than Knox having a meal with Christian Dawkins. The timeline becomes very important here. Bam’s $12,500 loan is listed on a balance sheet from December 31, 2015, so after he signed Kentucky (November 18, 2015). Did the payments come before or after that? If after, maybe it’s a good thing Luke Maye hit that shot.
Nerlens’ loan is the least of our worries
Nerlens was also listed on the December 31, 2015 balance sheet as taking a $4,350 loan from ASM, but Miller was his agent from June 2013 – December 2016. A professional player taking a loan from his agent is the least of Kentucky’ worries right now.
A rundown of players from other major programs
It’s definitely not just Kentucky:
- Dennis Smith, NC State – $43,500 loan, total of $73,500
- Markelle Fultz, Washington, $10,000 loan
- Miles Bridges – no specific amount, but per expense reports, “hundreds of dollars in advances”
- PJ Dozier, South Carolina – at least $6,115
- Josh Jackson, Kansas – $2,700
- Wendell Carter, Duke – Met or had meals with Dawkins
- Collin Sexton, Alabama – Met or had meals with Dawkins
- Tony Bradley, North Carolina – Met or had meals with Dawkins
No players from the 2011, 2012, 2014, or 2015 teams are listed
Which means for now, the banners are safe.
John Calipari is scheduled to talk to the media today
Calipari was scheduled to meet with reporters at 2:15 p.m. to preview tomorrow’s game vs. Missouri. That has yet to be confirmed this morning, but knowing Cal, I expect it will. Select players were scheduled to meet with the media at 1:45 p.m., but given this morning’s news, I doubt that happens.
UPDATE: John Calipari will address the media at 2:45 p.m. As expected, players will not be available for interviews.