Rick Pitino “effectively fired” as Louisville basketball coach, lawyer says

Last Updated Sep 27, 2017 1:35 PM EDT

Louisville placed basketball coach Rick Pitino on unpaid administrative leave Wednesday, the school announced amid a federal bribery investigation. Pitino’s attorney told the Courier-Journal the Hall of Fame coach was “effectively fired.”

Athletic Director Tom Jurich was placed on paid administrative leave, interim President Greg Postel told reporters at an afternoon press conference.

Pitino’s exit comes after the school acknowledged on Tuesday that the men’s program is part of a federal investigation into alleged bribery of recruits. A federal probe revealed hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes to influence star athletes’ choice of colleges, shoe sponsors and agents.

Federal prosecutors said at least three top high school recruits were promised payments of as much as $150,000, using money supplied by Adidas, to attend two universities sponsored by the athletic shoe company. Court papers didn’t name the schools but contained enough details to identify them as Louisville and Miami.

“We remain committed to cooperating fully with law enforcement and with the NCAA,” Postel said.

A top Adidas executive and four assistant coaches were among 10 men charged Tuesday.

Louisville is already under NCAA probation over a sex scandal after an investigation into a Cardinals staffer hiring escorts for sex parties and to strip for recruits and players. The NCAA said Louisville must vacate up to 123 victories earned with ineligible players and suspended Pitino five games for failing to monitor staffer Andre McGee.

Pitino also had to testify in 2010 in a federal extortion trial for the wife of the school’s equipment manager, when he acknowledged under oath to having an extramarital affair with her in a Louisville restaurant.

Head coach Rick Pitino of the Louisville Cardinals looks on in the first half against the Michigan Wolverines during the second round of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament at the Bankers Life Fieldhouse on March 19, 2017, in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Joe Robbins/Getty Images

Pitino was not named in the federal documents, though the school acknowledged it is under investigation by the FBI.

Pitino said he was shocked by the allegations hours before the school made its announcement.

“These allegations come as a complete shock to me. If true, I agree with the U.S….

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