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Pitino’s New Memoir: Schnatter ‘Unhinged’

Posted at 2:25 PM, Sep 03, 2018
and last updated 2018-09-03 14:25:15-04
FILE – In this Feb. 21, 2018 file photo, former Louisville basketball coach Rick Pitino appears during a news conference in New York. Diversion Books announced Monday, July 30 that Pitino has a memoir coming in September 4. “Pitino: My Story,” co-written by Seth Kaufman, will cover everything from his time coaching the New York Knicks and Boston Celtics to his triumphant and troubled career in the NCAA. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) — Former University of Louisville coach Rick Pitino offers his side of recent controversial events in a new tell-all book set to be released Tuesday.

WAVE reports here that the memoir, “Pitino: My Story,” details the federal bribery investigation that toppled his program.

It also provides highlights Pitino’s and the university’s relationship with disgraced pizza mogul John Schnatter, who sat on the university’s Board of Trustees.

In an excerpt provided to the New York Post here, Pitino says Schnatter was “unhinged” at a meeting where the coach was present to provide the board with an action plan following a bevy of NCAA violations related to the Katina Powell sex scandal.

Pitino writes:

Schnatter joined the proceedings via video conference. He started ranting about how the NCAA had charged my program with seventeen Level 1 violations, which of course wasn’t even close to the truth. We were hit with three Level 1 violations and a Level 2 violation. Then he said: “I have a problem with coaches coming to trustees meetings. What’s next, the women’s volleyball coach coming in there?”

That was a pretty sexist remark. But his entire attitude was disrespectful and nasty.

He kept telling us, “I’m here with Peyton.” He mentioned it a number of times. At first, I couldn’t figure it out, because when I hear the name Peyton, I immediately think of my great Cardinal guard Peyton Siva, and I couldn’t imagine the two of them hanging out. Then Schnatter finally indicated the Peyton in question was Peyton Manning. His behavior was bizarre and Tom (Jurich) and I looked at each other, as Schnatter kept walking in and out of the video conference screen. He seemed unhinged. We later found out that appearing at a meeting via video conferencing was a violation of board regulations. But why should that matter to John Schnatter?

Pitino was fired in October of 2017 after a sweeping federal investigation uncovered a possible pay-for-play arrangement between the university, Adidas and recruits.