Transcript: Arizona assistant paid $40K to solve Alkins' eligibility issue
Former Arizona assistant coach Emanuel "Book" Richardson told undercover FBI agents in June 2017 that he paid $40,000 to a high school coach to make sure Rawle Alkins was academically eligible to play for the school.
Alkins was a highly coveted guard who played two seasons with the Wildcats from 2016-18. Richardson said Alkins didn't receive any of the money.
During a June 20, 2017, meeting that involved runner Christian Dawkins, financial planner Munish Sood and two undercover FBI agents, Richardson disclosed that Alkins needed one more class to be eligible under NCAA rules and that an unidentified coach wanted $40,000 to add the class to the official transcript.
It was unclear which school Richardson is referencing, as Alkins attended Christ the Kings Regional High in Queens, N.Y., for three years and Word of God Christian Academy in Raleigh, N.C., for one.
"I felt that the kid was being done an injustice and a disservice because what -- the high school coach again, it was ingenious, but when you bamboozle everyone and that kid didn't get any of the 40 (thousand), that's the problem I have," Richardson said during the meeting, according to transcripts.
Richardson said that the coach had the records sealed, meaning there would be no way the NCAA could investigate. Yahoo Sports reported that NCAA investigators are aware of the payment.
A spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York told ESPN that the transcript was part of the evidence in this past spring's criminal trial in which Dawkins and former Adidas consultant Merl Code were convicted for paying bribes to Richardson and other coaches.
Richardson pleaded guilty in January to accepting $20,000 in bribes to steer players to Dawkins' sports management companies and other financial planners.
Richardson accepted a plea agreement in which he was sentenced to three months in prison and two years probation. He is currently serving his sentence at Federal Correctional Institute in Otisville, N.Y.
Richardson served as an Arizona assistant from 2009-17 under Sean Miller. He was arrested in September of 2017 and formally fired in January of 2018.
Alkins went undrafted in the 2018 NBA Draft. He played in 10 games for the Chicago Bulls last season and averaged 3.7 points and 2.6 rebounds.
--Field Level Media
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