Louisville head basketball coach Rick Pitino stated Thursday that he has no plans to resign despite lingering questions concerning how much he knew about the alleged sex parties involving players and potential Cardinals recruits.
Pitino posted a message on his official site about the upcoming season. He thanked the fans for their support and apologized for having to "endure the pain of these allegations." Moving forward he wants the focus to shift back toward basketball.
"I will not resign and let you down," he wrote. "Someday I will walk away in celebration of many memorable years but that time is not now. I do not fight these accusations by others but rather turn the other cheek. Couldn't do it at 33, but at 63 it's the wise thing to do. Let's let the investigators do their job and we will play basketball."
It's been nearly three weeks since the NCAA, along with Louisville officials, began investigating claims made in a book entitled Breaking Cardinal Rules: Basketball and the Escort Queen, as noted by Gary Parrish of CBS Sports.
The book alleges that the Cardinals' former director of basketball operations, Andre McGee—who's since left for the University of Missouri–Kansas City—paid escorts to have sex with players and recruits, according to the CBS Sports report.
John Barr and Jeff Goodman of ESPN later were told by five former players and recruits that they attended the alleged parties, which featured strippers, and one player claimed he had sex with one of the dancers after she was paid by McGee.
Pitino has denied any knowledge that such activities were taking place within the program, per Gary B. Graves of the Associated Press.
Louisville president James Ramsey confirmed Wednesday that he hasn't discussed the possibility of resigning with Pitino, noting the ongoing investigating into the matter. He said any calls for the longtime coach to step down haven't come from him, per Steve Jones of the Courier-Journal.
"I don't know who's made those calls," Ramsey said, "but if they want to call me, they can do that."
Pitino wrapped up his preseason outlook by quoting Pope Francis, who recently completed a trip to the United States. The Louisville coach felt a phrase the Pope used when asked about difficult topics is applicable to the current situation.
"He would often answer, 'We will let God judge,'" Pitino wrote.
So, barring new details coming to light in the near future, it appears the 63-year-old coach fully plans on being on the sidelines when Louisville opens the 2015-16 campaign next month.
The Cardinals are slated to open the regular season with a clash against Samford on Nov. 13.