For years, University of Louisville basketball recruits attended parties at a campus residence hall that included nude dancers and paid sex, five former and prospective players told ESPN, lending credence to claims made by a former escort in a book published this month.
The former escort, Katina Powell, said she was paid by Andre McGee, the team's former graduate assistant coach, to provide recruits with strip shows and sex during campus visits. Powell said she was paid about $10,000 by McGee for supplying dancers -- including her own daughters -- during a four-year period. In one instance, McGee allegedly offered the escort a bottle of whiskey signed by the team's head coach, Rick Pitino, as payment.
Pitino denies knowing about the parties, and the university is investigating the allegations. McGee has been placed on administrative leave at the University of Missouri at Kansas City, where he is now an assistant coach. ESPN confirmed that text messages sent to Powell arranging the parties came from McGee's phone, and confirmed that a wire transfer of $200 was sent to the escort by the assistant coach.
"It was crazy," one recruit, who ultimately chose not to attend Louisville, told ESPN. "It was like I was in a strip club."
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