Kevin Stallings Explains Altercation with Louisville Fan After Blowout Loss

Alec Nathan@@AlecBNathanFeatured ColumnistJanuary 3, 2018

NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 08: Head coach Kevin Stallings of the Pittsburgh Panthers directs his team against the Virginia Cavaliers during the second round of the ACC Basketball Tournament at Barclays Center on March 8, 2017 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. (Photo by Lance King/Getty Images)
Lance King/Getty Images

Pittsburgh Panthers head basketball coach Kevin Stallings took aim at Louisville's recent scandal involving alleged improper payments to prized recruit Brian Bowen's father during a verbal altercation with a fan at the KFC Yum! Center on Tuesday night.

According to WHAS 11's Whitney Harding, Stallings shouted, "At least we don't play our players 100 thousand dollars," during his team's 77-51 road loss to the Cardinals.

Harding passed along video of the comments:

Stallings later explained why he was frustrated.

"Somebody said something bad about my players," he said, according to WDRB's Eric Crawford. "I'm just going to stick up for my players. Probably said the wrong thing, but I'm not going to let people talk crap about my players. We're down, the game's over with. You don't need to insult kids that are out there trying to fight hard and do their best. I probably should have chosen some different words, but I'm not going to let people take shots at our players."

In September, the FBI released the findings of a years-long investigation that showed Adidas executive James Gatto worked in concert with Louisville to funnel $100,000 to the family of an unnamed recruit who was later identified as 247Sports 5-star forward Brian Bowen.

Bowen has denied having any knowledge of the payments.

"I was shocked," he told ESPN's Outside The Lines in December. "I didn't believe it at all. ... They have to be lying. There's no way I'm involved in it.

"I don't know anything about it."

Louisville has since announced Bowen will not be allowed to suit up for the Cardinals. He has, however, been granted permission to seek a transfer to another program. 

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