University of Louisville hopes to name interim athletic director within 48 hours

Jake Lourim
Courier Journal
UofL Athletic Director Tom Jurich leaves Grawemeyer Hall after having a meeting with interim president Greg Postel.  Jurich left the building less than 10 minutes later.
September 27, 2017

After the University of Louisville placed athletic director Tom Jurich on paid administrative leave Wednesday, the school hopes to name an interim athletic director within 48 hours, interim president Greg Postel said in a news conference.

Until Louisville names an interim replacement, university spokesman John Karman said that communication toward an athletic director would go through Postel.

Though Postel noted that administrative leave is the typical action toward employees in dealing with a criminal investigation, it does put the athletic director situation in flux. Jurich’s fate will not be decided until the next board of trustees meeting, which is scheduled for Oct. 19 unless one is called sooner.

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Asked if he had a timetable for naming a permanent athletic director, Postel said, “There’ll be an interim appointment.” Asked when he would know more, Postel answered, “until there’s resolution to the current situation, one way or the other,” presumably meaning Jurich’s fate.

The interim athletic director, then, could be an important decision, as Postel said that person will make decisions “regarding other coaches named as part of this investigation.”

That would include the two coaches referenced in the FBI’s investigation Tuesday, identified only as “Coach-1” and “Coach-2.” The FBI’s complaint alleges that Coach-1, a Louisville assistant, met with AAU coach Brad Augustine, sports agent Christian Dawkins, a witness and an undercover FBI agent in Las Vegas on July 27 to discuss payment to a high school basketball recruit in exchange for his attending Louisville. Meanwhile, someone using a phone number for Coach-2, another Louisville coach, spoke with Jim Gatto — whom the FBI also arrested — three times in the week before that recruit committed in June.

One possible candidate for the interim athletic director job is Junior Bridgeman, who played basketball at Louisville from 1972-1975 and served on the university’s board of trustees from June 2016 until February.

Reached for comment Wednesday morning, Bridgeman said, “I’ve got no comment on any of that.” He added, “We’ll see how it shakes out and go from there.” He did not return another phone call Wednesday afternoon but texted that he had nothing to add.

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