NCAA Basketball Tournament - Texas v Cincinnati

NCAA investigating Texas point guard Myck Kabongo for possible impermissible benefits

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As reported by Yahoo! Sports, the NCAA is investigating Texas point guard Myck Kabongo for the possible receipt of impermissible benefits.

Kabongo, who hails from Toronto, has been interviewed multiple times by the NCAA in regards to his summer workouts in Akron, Ohio with former Texas teammate and close friend Tristan Thompson.

One of the questions for Kabongo, according to Adrian Wojnarowski and Pat Forde of Yahoo! Sports, is the relationship he has with sports agent Rich Paul.

Paul represents both Thompson and LeBron James, and according to Yahoo sources called NBA executives on behalf of Kabongo in the months leading up to the NBA Draft (this is legal).

“We’re aware of the situation,” Texas basketball media relations official Scott McConnell said according to both Yahoo! Sports and “But we have not heard any decisions from the NCAA.”

The NCAA would like to know how Kabongo paid for his expenses in Akron, hence the questions about his relationship with Paul.

Kabongo’s time in Akron according to the Yahoo report included a workout with professional trainer Jerry Powell.

Powell denied any wrongdoing on his part in interviews with both the NCAA and Yahoo.

“I told the NCAA my side of the story,” Powell told Yahoo! Sports. “I’m sure Myck told his side. I’m not trying to ruin nobody’s eligibility. It’s never been about anything but workouts with me. I’m a trainer. That’s all. I’m not aligned with anybody. I’m my own person. I don’t get caught up with any of that.”

An agent can have a relationship with a student-athlete and his family provided there’s no agreement on representation or promise of financial benefits, according to NCAA rules.

Finding that Paul or someone else handled Kabongo’s expenses would result in the sophomore having to be declared ineligible.

“At the end of the day, here’s the main thing, it’s no crime to have a relationship with the kid,” Paul told Yahoo! Sports. “Of course, I know Myck through Tristan and Cory. I haven’t been contacted by the NCAA and I wouldn’t put a kid in harm’s way. My time in Cleveland was getting Michael Kidd-Gilchrist prepared for the draft. I live in Cleveland.

“I would never disrespect anybody’s program. I love the game of basketball. I understand the business of basketball, but I’m about doing it the right way.”

So if this happens what would Rick Barnes do with the point guard position?

Even with Kabongo the Longhorns are young on the perimeter thanks to J’Covan Brown going pro and Sterling Gibbs’ decision to transfer to Seton Hall.

But if the preseason All-Big 12 selection has to sit Texas would be down to a pair of freshmen (Javan Felix and Demarcus Holland) and two sophomores (Julien Lewis and Sheldon McClellan) in their rotation.

Raphielle is also the assistant editor at and can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.

Louisville’s Rick Pitino on allegations: ‘We will get through this’

Rick Pitino
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) Louisville coach Rick Pitino remains defiant that his program will survive the allegations in a book by an escort alleging that former Cardinals staffer Andre McGee hired her and other dancers to strip and have sex with recruits and players.

Pitino said Tuesday that the Cardinals “will get through this the right way.”

The coach told a packed room at a tipoff luncheon that he understands the motivation behind Katina Powell’s book “Breaking Cardinal Rules: Basketball and the Escort Queen,” but questions the need for the alleged activities given the talent his program has produced.

Pitino added, “We will find out the truth, whatever it may be, and those responsible will pay the price.”

Georgia Tech lands Class of 2016 guard

Brian Gregory
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Georgia Tech picked up its third Class of 2016 commitment on Tuesday as the Yellow Jackets landed a pledged from three-star guard Josh Okogie.

The 6-foot-4 guard is considered the No. 143 overall prospect in the national Class of 2016 rankings and Okogie played with a very talented Team CP3 in the Nike EYBL. In 22 games this spring and summer, Okogie averaged 10.6 points, 4.5 rebounds, 1.8 assists and 1.6 steals per game while shooting 45 percent from the field.

Okogie joins three-star wing Christian Matthews and four-star big man Romello White in head coach Brian Gregory’s Class of 2016 at Georgia Tech. The group is definitely a solid influx of talent with some coming from successful grassroots programs.