Oklahoma St subpoenaed for detailed comms with players
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Federal prosecutors seeking more information about the involvement of Oklahoma State basketball in a wider corruption scandal have asked the school to detail its communications with three key players in the investigation, as well as players and their parents.
A grand jury subpoena provided to the Associated Press on Thursday asks Oklahoma State to produce all communications between any member of the school’s coaching or athletic staff and former sports agent Christian Dawkins, financial adviser Martin Blazer and investment adviser Munish Sood.
Dawkins and Sood are accused of funneling money to coaches and parents to convince players to align with them if they turned pro. Blazer had participated in similar activities and began cooperating with authorities in 2014. He pleaded guilty last month to fraud and other crimes. According to the complaints, Blazer worked with federal officials to set up meetings with numerous coaches and others in basketball to get evidence of bribery.
The school provided the subpoena to The Associated Press after a public records request. The Oklahoman first reported the subpoena’s existence on Wednesday.
The subpoena, filed by federal prosecutors in New York, requests the personnel file of fired assistant coach Lamont Evans, plus NCAA certification forms for all players on the current team. It also asks for all documents regarding actual or potential NCAA rules violations and records of all communications between the athletic department and current players and parents of current players.
The prosecutors are seeking information from cellphones, tablets, laptops, desktop computers, phones, emails, social media accounts and other types of communication.
Evans is accused of accepting $2,000 a month in bribes to funnel athletes to certain agents, and that triggered fallout. Oklahoma State spokesman Gary Shutt said last week that the school had hired a compliance group to assist with an internal review, and that the school is cooperating with U.S. authorities.
Oklahoma State coach Mike Boynton said last week the situation surprised him.
“No, I never had any suspicions,” he said. “I was as shocked as anyone when this happened. I learned of it just like probably many of you did, by opening Twitter.”
When the initial allegations against Evans were announced, Oklahoma State athletic director Mike Holder said he expects better from people involved with the program.
“The allegations are serious and they violate everything we stand for as an athletic department and university,” Holder said. “We will cooperate with federal officials and coordinate with the NCAA as we move forward with looking into this matter to the fullest extent. Let me underscore, we expect every person affiliated with our athletic program to conduct themselves with integrity and to comply with the rules and the law.”
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