Arizona coach Sean Miller linked to basketball corruption scandal

Add the name of Arizona head coach Sean Miller to the burgeoning corruption scandal in college basketball.

ESPN is reporting that Miller discussed with a representative for a professional player agent a plan to pay $100,000 to center Deandre Ayton.

Authored by Mark Schlabach, the story is linked here.

The corruption investigation by the FBI came to light last fall with indictments of officials in and around college basketball for bribery and fraud.

Among those indicted were assistant coaches at Arizona, Auburn, Oklahoma State and Southern Cal.

The story intensified earlier this week when the NCAA ordered Louisville to vacate victories over a four-year period that included the 2013 national title.

Louisville fired coach Rick Pitino last fall after Pitino was linked to a plan to pay a recruit.

Pitino has not been charged criminally.

Another chapter in the tale unfolded Friday when Yahoo Sports reported that players from more than 20 Division I teams had been identified as possibly breaking NCAA rules, according to information uncovered in the probe.

See the story, written by Pete Thamel and Pat Forde, here.

Some of the players identified are being held out of practices and games leading into the final few weeks of the regular season.

Texas, for instance, is holding out guard Eric Davis Jr.

But other schools, namely Duke, Alabama and Michigan State, are allowing players linked to the investigation to play.

Those players include forward Wendell Carter at Duke, guard Collin Sexton at Alabama and Miles Bridges at Michigan State.

With the reports swirling about Miller and Ayton, Arizona is set to play tonight at Oregon.

Miller was unavailable for comment to the media Friday night, per a story at See the story here.

Arizona (22-6, 12-3) and Southern Cal (20-9, 11-5) are 1-2 in the Pac-12 standings.

The 7-foot-1 Ayton, averaging 19.6 points and 10.9 rebounds, is considered a potential NBA lottery pick if he comes out for the draft this summer.

Louisville ordered to vacate 2013 national title

The University of Louisville no longer can claim in the official record that its men’s basketball program won the 2013 NCAA championship.

Louisville has been ordered to vacate records for four seasons of former coach Rick Pitino’s controversial tenure, including trips to the Final Four in both 2012 and 2013.

According to an NCAA release, Louisville is also required to return money received through conference revenue sharing for appearances in the national tournament from 2012-15.

Officials at a Louisville news conference pegged the fine at about $600,000.

The NCAA determined in its investigation that a former Louisville basketball staffer arranged parties in which strippers entertained players and recruits.

In the wake of the allegations, Louisville self-imposed a penalty by taking itself out of consideration for the 2016 NCAA tournament.

The newest penalties came down after the school’s appeal of the additional sanctions was denied.

Pitino was fired in October over a separate matter, when Louisville acknowledged that its program was being investigated as part of a federal corruption probe of college basketball.

The former coach was linked to a plan to funnel $100,000 to the family of a recruit.

Pitino was not charged criminally in the probe.

Louisville is viewed as an NCAA tournament-caliber team this season under interim coach David Padgett.

The Cardinals are 18-9 and 8-6 in the Atlantic Coast Conference leading into a Wednesday night game at No. 5 Duke.