LSU suspends basketball coach Will Wade after report on wiretap probe

LSU has suspended head basketball coach Will Wade in the wake of the federal wiretap report around the program.

Sources told Yahoo Sports’ Pat Forde, Pete Thamel and Dan Wetzel on Thursday that the FBI intercepted a 2017 call between Wade and basketball middleman Christian Dawkins highlighted by Wade speaking about a “strong-ass offer” for a prospect.

LSU announces suspension

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LSU Chancellor F. King Alexander and athletic director Joe Alleva released a joint statement on Friday announcing Wade’s indefinite suspension. Assistant coach Tony Benford will take over the team in the interim.

‘Strong-ass offer’

“Dude,” Wade said to Dawkins. “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. 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.

Dawkins responded by saying, “Hmmmm.”

“It was a [expletive] hell of a [expletive] offer,” Wade continued. “Hell of an offer.”

“OK,” Dawkins said.

“Especially for a kid who is going to be a two- or three-year kid,” Wade said.

LSU has suspended Will Wade indefinitely after a report that he discussed an "offer" for a recruit on a federal wiretap. (Getty)
LSU has suspended Will Wade indefinitely after a report that he discussed an "offer" for a recruit on a federal wiretap. (Getty)

Dawkins facing bribery charges

Dawkins is facing federal bribery charges alongside Adidas consultant Merl Code in a trial that will commence in April. The two are accused of bribing college basketball coaches to gain an edge in signing potential NBA talent.

Wade and Arizona head coach Sean Miller are expected to be subpoenaed to testify at that trial.

On the wiretap, Wade refers to “this Smart thing” in expressing frustration over dealing with a recruit.

“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.”

There is no further elaboration on what “this Smart thing” is on the tape.

Javonte Smart is a starting freshman guard for LSU who arrived as a four-star recruit in the 2018 class.

LSU is tied for first place in the SEC and is projected as a top-3 seed for the upcoming NCAA Tournament.

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