Federal wiretap audio, text messages, hidden camera video and fraudulent invoices obtained by Outside the Lines — evidence from the first criminal trial resulting from the two-year FBI investigation into college basketball corruption — reveal an intimate look into the sport’s unseemly underbelly.
In one wiretapped call, former Adidas consultant Merl Code and Adidas executive James Gatto discuss the University of Arizona’s alleged offer of $150,000 to sign then-rising senior Nassir Little and whether the shoe company would match the sum to send the five-star recruit to the University of Miami, which is sponsored by Adidas.
Multiple wiretapped calls with Brian Bowen Sr. cover the several-school recruitment of his son, Brian Bowen Jr., and detail the father’s efforts to get paid. Another call features Munish Sood and Christian Dawkins, a former runner for NBA agent Andy Miller, discussing whether they can trust two people who would later be identified as FBI agents.
Sood, a financial adviser from New Jersey, and former Adidas consultant T.J. Gassnola pleaded guilty to their roles in the pay-for-play scheme and cooperated with the government. They’ll be sentenced next year.
Gatto, Code and Dawkins were found guilty this week on felony charges of wire fraud and conspiracy to commit wire fraud after a three-week criminal trial in federal court in Manhattan. They were found guilty of paying money from Adidas to the families of recruits to ensure they signed with Adidas-sponsored schools, and then with the sneaker company and certain financial planners and agents once they turned pro. They will be sentenced on March 5. Two more federal criminal cases involving college basketball corruption are scheduled for trial at U.S. District Court in Manhattan next year.
Following are the audio files, with accompanying transcripts of the recordings, as obtained by Outside the Lines. Please note subjects’ use of expletives and racial slurs throughout the audio files and transcripts. Gaps in the audio files and blank transcript pages are due to government redactions in the evidentiary documents.
James Gatto and Christian Dawkins discuss the market for “bigs.” Listen | Read
Gatto and T.J. Gassnola hope they still get to do basketball. Listen | Read
Merl Code and Gatto on dealing with Louisville and Miami. Listen | Read
Code and Gatto on Nassir Little and countering Arizona’s offer. Listen | Read
Brad Augustine and Code on getting over road sickness. Listen | Read
Gatto and Code on Brian Bowen Jr. and heading to Louisville. Listen | Read
Code and Dawkins on “more bad news.” Listen | Read
Dawkins and Munish Sood on a “roadblock” with Bowen Jr. Listen | Read
Dawkins and Bowen Sr. on dealing with Adidas. Listen | Read
Bowen Sr. and Dawkins on “you about to get some money.” Listen | Read
Dawkins and Bowen Sr. on staying at the Howard Johnson. Listen | Read
Dawkins and Sood on dealing with the Bowen family. Listen | Read
Dawkins and Code on Bowen Jr. and getting paid. Listen | Read
Dawkins and T.J. Gassnola on Rick Pitino, Arizona and Adidas. Listen | Read
Dawkins and Jill Bailey on “Louisville needs to get five grand in an account.” Listen | Read
Bowen Sr. and Dawkins on the Bowen family problems. Listen | Read
Dawkins and Sood on paranoia over emails. Listen | Read
Dawkins and Bowen Sr. on an early Christmas for the Bowens. Listen | Read
Sood, Code and an undercover agent on getting a payment for Bowen Sr. Listen | Read
Gatto voicemail to Rick Pitino to discuss a player. Listen | Read
Gatto voicemail to Pitino after Bowen Jr. committed. Listen | Read
Sood and Dawkins on cash drop-offs. Listen | Read
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