Rick Pitino took, and passed, a polygraph test on Brian Bowen situation | Zagsblog
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Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
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Thursday / November 21.
  • Rick Pitino took, and passed, a polygraph test on Brian Bowen situation

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    Rick Pitino took, and passed, a polygraph test on the Brian Bowen situation.

    That’s according to documents released Monday by Pitino’s attorney, Steve Pence.

    During the Oct. 6 lie detector test, Pitino was asked A) if he participated in paying Bowen’s family; and B) if he knew Bowen’s family had been paid.

    Pitino answered no to both.

    Former FBI agent Carl Christiansen administered the polygraph.

    According to Pitino’s affidavit, he spoke with Bowen’s mother, Carrie Malecke, after the FBI complaint was released, and she said, “she knew nothing about any money paid to Bowen’s father.”

    Piton was “effectively fired” Sept. 27 in the wake of a pay-for-play scandal revealed by the U.S. Department of Justice that alleged Adidas arranged to pay Bowen’s family $100,000 in return for his commitment to Louisville and his plan to then sign with the company upon turning pro.

    Pitino received a text from Maleke two days after the complaint saying she was “totally blindsided” by the accusations and that none of it would change which school her son picked.

    The documentation further showed that interim head coach David Padgett said Pitino told his staff after the stripper/hooker scandal that he wanted to know “everything” that went on in the program.

    So either Pitino knew about the Bowen situation, or he didn’t know but should have. Neither is a good option.

    Pitino’s initial statement on Sept. 27 read, in part:

    “Third, as I’ve previously stated, I had no knowledge of any payments to any recruit or their family. But I was the head coach and I will take ownership of my decisions. The University took the action they thought was necessary and I will do the same.“

    For more on the Bowen situation, read our New York Times story here.

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    Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle. A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013. He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.