In the wake of the FBI’s arrests last week of 10 individuals with ties to college basketball on corruption charges, Georgia Tech athletic director Todd Stansbury led an internal review to ensure that coach Josh Pastner and his staff have been working within the NCAA’s recruiting rules. Stansbury also reviewed the athletic department’s rules compliance processes.
Stansbury told the The Atlanta Journal-Constitution Monday that there has been no contact from the FBI or NCAA since the arrests last week.
“We’re feeling pretty comfortable about where we are there, but it’s going to be interesting to see how this thing kind of rolls out over time,” he said.
Part of the review, Stansbury said, was directly asking Pastner and his staff about any possible improprieties.
“That’s part of the review,” he said. “Is there anything else out there that could end up on our doorstep? So that conversation was definitely had, and Josh had similar conversations with his staff internally, so it was just to make sure that there’s nothing out there that may have happened prior to Georgia Tech.”
The review also sought to ensure that records and information is kept regarding recruits to ensure that there aren’t holes in the system, Stansbury said.
“We can control what we control,” he said. “Obviously, somebody that just wants to go out there and break the law, then I don’t know there’s a lot we can do about that.”
Part of functioning within the rules, he added, was “making sure that you’ve got the right people on your staff.” To that end, Pastner told the AJC last week that “I trust my assistant coaches 100 percent.”
Stansbury also affirmed Monday that the athletic department is proceeding forward with Adidas toward the scheduled July 2018 partnership.
Stansbury said that he has had conversations with the company after the FBI arrested Jim Gatto, the company’s global sports marketing director for basketball, for his alleged role in organizing payments of a combined $250,000 to the families of two basketball prospects to attend Adidas-sponsored schools, Louisville and Miami. Stansbury also said that Adidas has hired an external investigator to look into its processes.
“We’re kind of, in the meantime, moving forward with what we’re doing, since time is of the essence with regards to being ready for next year,” Stansbury said. “But they’ve been as open and transparent as they can be, given the circumstances, and have pledged that that’s the way they will be going forward.”
Should circumstances change, though, Tech apparently has an out. Stansbury said that the six-year agreement between Tech and Adidas has yet to be signed for a reason unrelated to the investigation.
“The long form is still being worked on,” Stansbury said.
Amid fanfare and excitement from Yellow Jackets fans, alumni and athletes, Tech announced in August that it had reached an agreement with Adidas to be its next apparel provider after its contract with Russell Athletic ends in June 2018.
Stansbury was angered by the FBI’s findings and called it embarrassing for college athletics.
“Because I think the majority of people in intercollegiate athletics want to do it the right way, are trying to do it the right way, and while there may have been innuendo and those types of things in the past (about shoe-company payments), to find out that’s actually going on is disappointing because it provides the cynics of intercollegiate athletics with great ammunition, knowing that that’s not the way a majority of us operate,” he said. “And so it’s disappointing.”
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