Will Wade meets with LSU, NCAA officials

Will Wade meets with LSU, NCAA officials
LSU head coach Will Wade (Source: Josh Auzenne)

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Suspended LSU basketball head coach Will Wade met with university and NCAA officials Friday.

“I can confirm there is a meeting scheduled tomorrow with Coach Wade, LSU officials and the NCAA within the parameters LSU first requested in early March," read the statement released Thursday by Robert Munson, the senior associate athletics director at LSU. "University officials have made clear their expectation for full cooperation and transparency in this first step in a process toward resolution.”

Many believe it will be several days before there is an announcement on the outcome of the meeting.

The meeting finally ended the standoff between the two sides that had gone on for more than a month. Wade was suspended indefinitely on March 8.

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Word of the meeting surfaced exactly a week after a Sports Illustrated report that Wade and the university were “working toward a meeting.” The report stated Wade had acquired a new attorney, Steven Thompson, who is based in Chicago and “known for his work with coaches in NCAA matters.”

The suspension happened the day after Yahoo Sports reported the FBI recorded a conversation between Wade and Christian Dawkins, a “recruiting middleman,” in which Wade was frustrated with Dawkins because a recruit had yet to accept an “offer.” Many believe the recruit was freshman guard Ja’Vonte Smart.

“I was thinking last night on this Smart thing,” Wade said. “I’ll be honest with you, I’m [expletive] tired of dealing with the thing. Like I’m just [expletive] sick of dealing with the [expletive]. Like, this should not be that [expletive] complicated.”

“Dude,” Wade continued to Dawkins, referring to the third party involved in the recruitment, “I went to him with a [expletive] strong-ass offer about a month ago. [Expletive] strong.

“The problem was, I know why he didn’t take it now, it was [expletive] tilted toward the family a little bit,” Wade continued. “It was tilted toward taking care of the mom, taking care of the kid. Like it was tilted towards that. Now I know for a fact he didn’t explain everything to the mom. I know now, he didn’t get enough of the piece of the pie in the deal.”

On March 28, Yahoo Sports identified Shannon Forman as the alleged middleman between Wade and Smart. Forman is a former basketball star himself and has a lot of connections in Baton Rouge sports. According to the report, multiple sources said Forman is mentioned in a taped conversation between Wade and another man at the middle of an FBI investigation.

Wade allegedly mentioned Forman as the person who delivered a “strong offer” to the player who was at Scotlandville High at the time. The report stated guard Smart called Forman a “mentor.”

According to Yahoo Sports, Wade mentioned “Shannon” as the intermediary for his “offer” for a recruit during a wiretapped phone call with Dawkins. Yahoo Sports added documents show a link between Forman and Dawkins.

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