Report: Shannon Forman Is Man Who Received LSU HC Will Wade's 'Strong-Ass Offer'

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistMarch 28, 2019

LSU head coach Will Wade instructs his players in the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Tuesday, Feb. 26, 2019, in Baton Rouge, La. LSU won 66-55. (AP Photo/Bill Feig)
BILL FEIG/Associated Press

Shannon Forman is reportedly the man suspended LSU head men's basketball coach Will Wade was referencing during a wiretapped 2017 phone call with Christian Dawkins. 

According to Pat Forde, Pete Thamel and Dan Wetzel of Yahoo Sports, Wade said he made a "strong-ass offer" to Forman for a recruit. Forman is a "fixture in Baton Rouge basketball circles" who LSU guard Javonte Smart reportedly referred to as his mentor.

Wade is suspended indefinitely by LSU amid an investigation into whether he used improper benefits in recruiting.

Dawkins is facing bribery charges for allegedly acting as a middleman in illegal negotiations between college basketball coaches and the families of recruits. He was already convicted of wire fraud and conspiracy to commit wire fraud in October.

Smart was not cleared to play in the final game of the regular season since his name came up in the wiretapped conversation, but he returned for the start of the SEC tournament. Smart has also played during LSU's run to the Sweet 16 in the NCAA tournament.

In the conversation between Wade and Dawkins that allegedly involved them talking about Forman, Wade said the following, per Yahoo Sports:

"The problem was, I know why he didn't take it now, it was [expletive] tilted toward the family a little bit. It was tilted toward taking care of the mom, taking care of the kid. Like it was tilted towards that. Now I know for a fact he didn't explain everything to the mom. I know now, he didn't get enough of the piece of the pie in the deal."

Dawkins reportedly sent an email to ASM Sports president Andy Miller and other ASM employees in August 2016 and wrote the following regarding Forman: "I met with ... Shannon Forman, who has Javonte smart (sic). [Forman] had two kids in the elite 24 game that have a shot down the line. And he also wants to give us Brandon Sampson."

When asked Thursday by Yahoo Sports to comment on the matter, Forman would only say, "Right now is not a good time."

Smart is averaging 11.4 points, 3.4 rebounds, 2.4 assists and 1.3 steals per game this season as a freshman. He scored nine points in each of LSU's first two NCAA tournament games as well.

With Tony Benford acting as LSU's interim head coach, the Tigers are in the Sweet 16 after beating both Yale and Maryland. On Friday, they will face second-seeded Michigan State for a spot in the Elite Eight.