LSU to sit Javonte Smart in wake of alleged pay-for-play scandal | 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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Sunday / June 16.
  • LSU to sit Javonte Smart in wake of alleged pay-for-play scandal

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    By ADAM ZAGORIA

    After announcing Friday that head coach Will Wade had been suspended indefinitely, LSU will now sit guard Javonte Smart on Saturday against Vanderbilt.

    The 6-foot-4 Smart is averaging 11.5 points and 3.3 assists for No. 10 LSU (25-5).

    A Yahoo report on Thursday included excerpts of a phone call in which Wade spoke with Christian Dawkins, who is one of several people convicted in October of conspiracy to commit wire fraud for funneling illegal payments to families of recruits to Louisville, Kansas and North Carolina State. Dawkins also is a defendant in a federal bribery case scheduled for trial scheduled for April 22, and Wade is expected to be called as a witness in that case.

    In the report, Wade is described expressing his frustration with an unidentified third party handling the recruitment of player referred to only as “Smart.”

    Wade is quoted on a transcript of the call saying that he made a strong offer that was “tilted toward taking care of” the player and his mother, but that the third party who received the offer was unsatisfied with his “piece of the pie.”

    The report also states that it was not clear if the offer Wade discusses would violate NCAA rules, or if the player and his family knew of, or accepted, the offer, of which there were no specific details.

    (The AP contributed; Photo: Getty Images)

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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.