Well, on a scale of 1-10 of worst case scenarios, I have this pegged at like a 7.5. Maybe an 8. The sky hasn’t fallen completely. We’re still playing basketball tomorrow, but college basketball is significantly less fun when your team has no chance of playing for a championship. The image of Damion Lee and Trey Lewis moved to tears in the locker room is some seriously gut wrenching stuff regardless of where your allegiances lie. Just a shitty situation all the way around. People will see this ban as a Louisville problem or a Rick Pitino problem, and it most certainly is, but on a much larger scale Louisville’s self imposed postseason ban highlights a fundamental problem within the NCAA’s handling of program violations. It’s a near certainty that the Cards opted for a one year, self imposed ban to lessen the blow of a potentially larger ban brought on by the ongoing Katina Powell investigation. The Cards are essentially taking a plea deal, which, in the long run is probably the smart decision, however a punishment this year (or at any time in the future for that matter) doesn’t punish those who were truly responsible for any wrongdoing in the first place. That is where the problem lies. Guys like Damion Lee and Trey Lewis, 5th year grad students who transferred in solely for the opportunity to compete in an NCAA Tournament won’t get to do so. Guys like Chinanu Onuaku and incoming freshman VJ King will likely depart for the NBA or reopen their commitment with an uncertain future ahead. And former players, guys like Andre McGee who orchestrated the whole shebang get to go on living their lives scot free. I realize the NCAA can’t go back in time and string these guys up by their nipples, but punishing current athletes for the transgressions of former personnel is flat out not fair.
Obviously the question now is what will become of Pitino and the rest of the Louisville program? Who stays and who goes? Rick has said from day one that he isn’t going anywhere, but keep in mind that we’re talking about a guy who fucks chicks on tables in Italian restaurants and claims that this team’s statistically second ranked defense doesn’t know how to defend, so you kind of have to take everything Rick says with a grain of salt. The UNLV rumors are there and with a distraught roster and growing frustration from fans everywhere you legitimately have to wonder if Rick is really gonna coach out the rest of his deal which runs through 2025-26 and north of $50 million.
Also what do you think Andre McGee does now? Disappears? Falls off the map and hides out in the Caribbean somewhere? I know people love to joke about Pitino and connections to the mob and what not, but if I were Andre McGee I’d be legitimately concerned for my safety right now.