SEC Basketball: Years too late, LSU has parted ways with Will Wade


Will Wade will not coach LSU in the NCAA Basketball Tournament. Two responses are appropriate. LSU, what took you so long? And to Will, not good-bye, but good-riddance.

Wade has been stone-walling LSU for a long time. Caught on tape, talking about buying players years ago, Wade flaunted his unethical behavior, not just to LSU but to all of college basketball.

This week it was confirmed LSU received a notice of allegations about its men’s basketball and football programs. Pete Thamel reported,

"The notice comes from the Complex Case Unit, which is part of the Independent Accountability Resolution Process that’s handling this and other cases for the NCAA. The notice of allegations stem from multiple cases, including LSU’s ties to the federal basketball investigation that became public in 2017."

In documents reviewed by ESPN, the allegations include,

"that Wade either arranged or offered “impermissible payments” to at least 11 prospects."

According to Ross Dellenger of SI. com, Wade has been tied to at least “four Level 1, violations.”

The NCAA’s alternative enforcement arm, the Independent Accountability Resolution Process (IARP) does not allow for a penalized party to appeal. Will Wade had a clause in his LSU contract that allowed termination by the school if the coach was charged with a Level 1 or Lever 2 violation.

Though LSU had refused to acknowledge Wade was under such scrutiny, the school must now focus on cutting its losses. LSU had already self-penalized the football program with a bowl ban and scholarship restrictions. It is not known how much damage Will Wade’s blatant cheating will indirectly have on the Bengal Tigers’ football program.

The IARP was supposed to speed up NCAA investigations and enforcement. The process has failed to do so. The IARP was also expected to exercise its discretion to levy tougher than normal NCAA penalties. So far, that too has not been the case.

Will Wade will coach again

Wade will not skate, but LSU may come away with minimal restrictions. The NCAA recently punished the Auburn basketball program with a wrist-slap. After whatever show-cause Wade is given, he’ll have no problem finding a new team to coach.

With LSU heading into the NCAA Tournament, the Bengal Tigers will be led by interim, head coach, Kevin Nickelberry. Nickelberry began his head coaching career in 2007 at Hampton. After three seasons, he moved to Howard, where he coached through the 2019 season.

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LSU is expected to be a 6-seed in the NCAA Tournament. Will Wade leaves LSU with a 108-53 record over five seasons.