Five former University of Louisville basketball recruits confirmed to ESPN’s “Outside the Lines” that they attended parties in a dorm where strippers and escorts were provided.
The revelation confirms the sex scandal firestorm that began following as details from the book, Breaking Cardinal Rules: Basketball and the Escort Queen, surfaced. In it, Katina Powell sex parties at a campus dorm from 2010-14, that included strippers allegedly paid for by former director of basketball operations Andre McGee.
One of the former players said he had sex with a dancer after McGee paid her. Each of the players and recruits attended different parties at Billy Minardi Hall, where dancers, many of whom stripped naked, were present. Three of the five players said they attended parties as recruits and also when they played for Louisville.
Said one of the recruits who ultimately signed to play elsewhere: “I knew they weren’t college girls. It was crazy. It was like I was in a strip club.”
In the book, 42-year-old Katina Powell details almost two dozen incidents of parties arranged by McGee where she was paid $10,000 for supplying dancers. Powell told Outside the Lines that McGee also gave cash for “side deals,” which included sex with some recruits, their guardians who accompanied them on visits, and other Cardinals basketball players.
The former player who had sex with a dancer said he was given him one-dollar bills to tip and paid one dancer to have sex with the player in a separate room. Another former players, said he attended the parties as a recruit and player. He claimed McGee
“would give us the money, just the recruits. A bunch of us were sitting there while they danced. Then the players left, and the recruits chose which one [of the dancers] they wanted.”
Two of the women Powell procured for the parties included her daughters.
Lindsay Powell, now 24, says she had sex with Russ Smith, guard on the 2013 National Championship team and currently in the NBA with the Memphis Grizzlies. Rod Ni Powell, 22, claims she was paid to have sex with Montrezl Harrell, who was a first round pick of the Houston Rockets this year. Earlier, Harrell told the Houston Chronicle: “It goes without saying, I don’t know anything about it. I didn’t too much stay at the dorm. I stayed off campus. I had a girlfriend off campus.”
Rick Pitino has denied any knowledge of the activities.