Calipari assistant allegedly broke recruiting rules

Kentucky Wildcats head coach John Calipari watches over his team during their practice for their upcoming NCAA Final Four college basketball game in Houston, Texas, April 1, 2011. REUTERS/Jeff Haynes (UNITED STATES – Tags: SPORT BASKETBALL)

The smoke is gathering around John Calipari.

Allegations have emerged as part of an ongoing investigation that one of Calipari’s former assistants broke NCAA recruiting violations.

But a nearly two-year investigation revealed that [Bilal] Batley also broke NCAA rules by making repeated impermissible telephone calls while at both Memphis and Kentucky to recruits, such as DeMarcus Cousins, and their parents.

When approached by a reporter after his news conference on Friday, Calipari refused to address any questions concerning whether he was aware of Batley’s calls and whether or not Kentucky self-reported the violations.

NCAA rules state that all telephone calls made to or received from a recruit, his parents, legal guardians or coaches must be made and received by a team’s head coach or three countable assistant coaches.

According to Memphis and Kentucky, Batley was not a countable coach at either school.

The report goes on to quote Cousins in saying that Batley played a “big role” in his decision to follow Calipari to Kentucky.

“We stayed in contact with him frequently,” DeMarcus Cousins told

High-schooler (and top 2012 point guard recruit) L.J. Rose admitted that he spoke to Batley frequently while he was at Kentucky.

Batley has something of a checkered past, including an accident in Texas in which he was driving a van full of players. Two players were killed and five others were injured. He was not indicted.

He also worked for Kelvin Sampson at Indiana during the time when Sampson and his staff were found to have broken recruiting violations. Batley joined Calipari in Memphis about a month after one of the players) he was recruiting at Indiana (Nolan Dennis committed to Memphis. Hmm.

At best, Calipari is guilty of bad judgment in hiring Batley. At worst, he knew about the illegal contact and turned a blind eye. Worse yet, he endorsed it.

Nothing has stuck to Calipari in his college coaching career, but both of his trips to the Final Four (at UMass and Memphis) have been vacated due to NCAA violations. Marcus Camby was found to have had illegal contact with an agent while Derrick Rose had someone else take his SAT.

Is this year’s Final Four appearance next on the list?

Read the entire piece here.

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