Half of the assistant coaches charged as part of the federal investigation into college basketball have now entered into plea agreements.
Former Arizona assistant Book RIchardson has agreed to a deal with prosecutors to plead guilty to federal funds bribery, which contains a sentencing guideline of 18-to-24 months, according to reports.
“Book Richardson has positively affected the lives of young men and encouraged them to reach their potential for 25 years,” Craig Mordock, Richardson’s New Orleans-based attorney, said according to Yahoo Sports. “While he will be judged for his actions in this case, this is something he did. It is not who he is.”
Richardson joins ex-USC assistant Tony Bland, who agreed to a plea deal that is expected to result in probation.
Former Auburn assistant Chuck Person and former Oklahoma State assistant Lamont Evans have both been charged as part of the case, and are awaiting trial.
Federal prosecutors in New York secured guilty verdicts from two shoe company employees and a would-be agent as part of the case late last year.
The investigation is yet to result in NCAA action, but the governing body is allowed under its new rules to utilize evidence collected by authorities, making testimony and other information gained by the FBI and court action available in the course of their investigations, which would seem to make a number of high-profile programs vulnerable to sanctions.