Sean Gardner/Getty Images(BATON ROUGE, La.) — LSU has suspended men's basketball coach Will Wade indefinitely after reports said he was heard on FBI wiretap's discussing an 'offer' for a recruit, the school announced Friday.
The calls were between Wade and aspiring businessman Christian Dawkins and were intercepted in October 2017 when the FBI was monitoring one of Dawkins cell phones as part of the FBI's secret investigation into college basketball corruption.
Dawkins was sentenced to six months in jail earlier this week after being found guilty of wire fraud and conspiracy to commit wire fraud in connection with the investigation.
According to people familiar with the calls, the recruit mentioned is current LSU guard Javonte Smart, who was a top-50 recruit from Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
LSU President and Chancellor F. King Alexander and Vice Chancellor and Director of Athletics Joe Alleva released a joint statement about Wade's suspension.
"Recent media reports regarding Coach Will Wade are without question concerning to us all. As such, we and university officials have taken deliberate and purposeful steps to fairly assess and adequately address the situation. As we have done since media reports first surfaced months ago, we are closely coordinating with the NCAA with every step. They have our full full cooperation and we will continue to report to them all facts and information on this matter. All of us at LSU share the obligation to protect the integrity of this institution, as such we have suspended Head Coach Will Wade indefinitely until such time as we can ensure full compliance with the NCAA, as well as institutional policies and standards. Assistant coach Tony Benford will assume the duties of interim coach."
LSU is ranked tenth in the nation with a 25-5 record and is tied for first in the SEC with a 15-2 record. The Tigers play Vanderbilt on Saturday in their final regular season game.
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