Orlando Sentinel columnist Mike Bianchi interviewed ESPN’s Pat Forde on his radio show, Open Mike with Mike Bianchi and Brian Fritz on 740-AM (WYGM), Monday morning.
Here are some of the highlights from the interview:
On Ken Caldwell, the man accused of being an agent or working with agents and contacting UCF recruits:“He’s a con man. … I know for a fact, he is on the NCAA radar.”
“he has a deep involvement with a bunch of players and a deep involvement with at least one agent. and if you put those together, that’s bad news for your college program.”
“… There’s plenty of smoke there. There’s a chimney worth of smoke there. Where there is smoke, there is also fire.”
On the assertion by some UCF fans that this is being fueled by sour grapes over the Knights beating Louisville for all three recruits involved:“Often times that is when you start hearing about things, no doubt it. you know what, it only is sour grapes if there’s nothing else to it. if it’s just sour grapes, Central Florida will come out of it, slap it off and be fine and keep going forward.
“I think there’s some really troubling things here that need to be addressed.”
On UCF’s response to the allegations:“I tried all last week to get ahold of Keith Tribble, the alleged head of the athletic department. and not only could I not get him, I could not even get an explanation for why I couldn’t get him. I thought it was incredible lack of accountability from the guy in charge there to not want to pick up the phone and defend your athletic department if there are situations that could involve your football and men’s basketball programs. … so Keith Tribble come out of wherever you are and explain yourself.”
On whether he thinks all college coaches have to deal with shady figures to land big recruits:“yes, I do. Unfortunate fact of college basketball — especially if you’re in a UCF position where you’re trying to climb up the mountain. and Donnie Jones told me as much. he basically said they’re not agents, but sometimes you’ve got to deal with people like this because they’re connected to so many players. Is that a bad sign for the game? yes it is.”
On assertions by UCF fans Forde pursued the article because of his ties to Louisville:“all I knew was there was a good story going on in my backyard, and I was not going to let the New York Times do it by itself.”