University of Louisville interim President Dr. Greg Postel, left, answers a question as interim Athletic Director Vince Tyra looks on during a press conference, in Louisville, Ky. Louisville must vacate its 2013 men’s basketball title following an NCAA appeals panel’s decision to uphold sanctions against the men’s program in the sex scandal case. The Cardinals will have to vacate 123 victories including the championship, and return some $600,000 in conference revenue from the 2012-15 NCAA Tournaments. (Photo by THE ASSOCIATED PRESS)

Louisville Cardinals must vacate basketball title, NCAA denies appeal

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Louisville must vacate its 2013 men’s basketball title following an NCAA appeals panel’s decision to uphold sanctions against the men’s program in the sex scandal case.

The Cardinals will have to vacate 123 victories including the championship, and return some $600,000 in conference revenue from the 2012-15 NCAA Tournaments.

The decision announced on Tuesday by the governing body’s Infraction Appeals Committee ruled that the NCAA has the authority to take away championships for what it considers major rule violations. It also refuted Louisville’s position that the NCAA exceeded its boundaries and didn’t follow its own precedent established in other cases and said in an eight-page decision that ended, “the penalties are upheld.”

“I cannot say this strongly enough: We believe the NCAA is simply wrong,” Louisville interim President Dr. Greg Postel said in a statement. “We disagree with the NCAA ruling for reasons we clearly stated in our appeal. And we made a strong case – based on NCAA precedent – that supported our argument.”

Louisville now must forfeit its third NCAA title, victories and income from 2012-15, part of the timeframe during which the violations occurred. The decision culminates the governing body’s investigation that followed allegations in a 2015 book by escort Katina Powell that former Cardinals basketball staffer Andre McGee hired her and other dancers to strip and have sex with recruits.

“From Day One, the university has admitted that the actions of the former operations director and any others involved under previous leadership were offensive and inexcusable,” Postel said in the statement. “That is why we apologized immediately, co-operated fully with the NCAA, self-imposed penalties that were appropriate to the offences and made significant changes to ensure incidents like this never happen again.

“Under the NCAA’s own rules, this co-operation should have been a factor in the severity of the punishment. Instead, it was ignored.”

The school’s own investigation into the allegation revealed that violations occurred and resulted in a self-imposed post-season ban nearly two years ago. Louisville later imposed scholarship and recruiting restrictions in an effort to mitigate further NCAA discipline.

While the NCAA accepted Louisville’s actions, it went further with harsher sanctions last June that included:

— A five-game suspension of former Cardinals coach Rick Pitino, who was fired in October following Louisville’s acknowledgement that it was being investigated in a federal bribery probe of college basketball. That measure included a show-cause penalty for Pitino, whom the NCAA criticized for failing to monitor McGee and ignoring multiple red flags;

— Four years’ probation, along with the vacation of those wins and appearances in the 2012 and 2013 Final Fours;

— Show-cause penalties for McGee, who is no longer coaching;

— Postel estimated the return of up to $600,000 in NCAA Tournament revenue.

“This dark cloud has hung over our heads for more than two years, and it has had a negative impact on our athletics program, our fans and the entire university family,” Postel said. “While we disagree with the NCAA’s decision, it is time for the university to close this chapter and move forward with a stronger commitment to excellence on and off the court.”

Postel, then-athletic director Tom Jurich and Pitino said last summer they planned to fight the sanctions. Pitino, who repeatedly denied knowing about the activities described in Powell’s book, was particularly frustrated with his penalties.

A lot changed at Louisville in the months following the NCAA penalties. Pitino was placed on unpaid administrative leave and Jurich on paid administrative leave on Sept. 27 following the school’s involvement in the FBI probe that initially involved the arrests of 10 people.

Just Posted

Heat warning in effect for Central Alberta

Environment Canada has issued a heat warning for Central Alberta. Residents in… Continue reading

Red Deer Royals place second at Calgary Stampede parade

Royals depicted life in forest and portrayed destruction by human beings

Westerner Days parade set for Wednesday in downtown Red Deer

Over 30,000 people are expected to line up the streets of downtown… Continue reading

Storm rips through Central Alberta

Hail pelts region causing damage to farmland, plus communities in Ponoka, Bashaw and Stettler

France wins 2nd World Cup title, beats Croatia 4-2

MOSCOW — France won its second World Cup title by beating Croatia… Continue reading

CFIA inspects after video shows pigs crammed into B.C. transport truck

The video shows pigs piled on top of one another in a transport truck on a “sweltering” hot day last week

Man killed by Chicago police ran away, reached for waist

CHICAGO — A man killed by Chicago police had a gun in… Continue reading

Chicago police: Man killed by police appeared to be armed

CHICAGO — Footage from body-worn cameras and surveillance cameras shows that a… Continue reading

New Mexico passenger bus crash kills 3, injures 24 others

BERNALILLO, N.M. — A crash involving a commercial passenger bus and three… Continue reading

Police officer, bystander die from gunshot wounds

BOSTON — A Massachusetts police officer and bystander died Sunday from wounds… Continue reading

Trump names EU a global foe, raps media before Putin summit

HELSINKI — President Donald Trump named the European Union as a top… Continue reading

Stolen firetruck stopped after wild chase in California

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Police chased a stolen firetruck across four Northern California… Continue reading

Storm rips through Central Alberta

Hail pelts region causing damage to farmland, plus communities in Ponoka, Bashaw and Stettler

Activists protest outside Kinder Morgan terminal in kayaks, canoes in B.C.

Tsleil-Waututh elder Ta’ah Amy George led the water ceremony from a traditional Coast Salish canoe

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month