Rick Pitino Press Conference Video and Full Text
Louisville basketball coach Rick Pitino held a press conference today to address the growing Rick Pitino sex scandal. Pitino took no questions from the media. Instead, he read a prepared statement giving his take on his relationship with Karen Sypher.
After admitting to an extramarital affair with Sypher, some are asking: is Pitino leaving Louisville. If today's press conference is any indication, then the answer is no. Pitino gave no indication that he plan on stepping down from the job.
Pitino used most of his time to apologize to his family, friends, and colleagues for his indiscretion that took place "six years ago." Pitino used the phrase "six years ago" several times, perhaps to emphasize the idea that this was a one-time indiscretion that occurred in the distant past.
Here is the full text from the Rick Pitino Press Conference:
"I just want to make a statement. I want to say that the past seven months have been very difficult on the people I love. I made a decision seven months ago because of something I've preached to my players for the thirty-some-odd years I've been coaching. They've heard it for thirty-some-odd years and it goes like this: When you have a problem, if you tell the truth, your problem becomes a part of your past. If you lie, it becomes a part of your future. I made a very difficult decision to tell the truth to the federal authorities, the local authorities, the university officials and most importantly, the people that love me the most: my family and friends."
"A grand jury indictment is a very serious thing and I have not commented on it for that reason. I have not said anything to any of you about any of it. But I am here today because I've personally apologized to my family every single day. For all of us, our families - our wife and our children - and mine in particular, make the sun rise for me every morning. They are highly principled people that are very strong morally and very strong fundamentally and I let them down with my indiscretion six years ago. I'm sorry for that and I've told them that every single day."
"But I want to tell more than just them that. I want to tell my extended family, which is all of my players, recruits who believe in me, families who have believed in me, that I'm sorry for that indiscretion six years ago. You as professionals who have covered me for 16 years, I want to apologize to you as professionals for that indiscretion six years ago."
"Besides my apology to the university -- and in particular to Tom Jurich and Dr. Ramsey, who have been very strong with me throughout this period -- I also apologize to my extended family, which is all of the fans. I came here at a very difficult time. When 9/11 hit, you needed a community to get you over it. In New York City, it was easy because everybody knew the devastation of that and they got each other over it. In Louisville, the impact wasn't felt like New York City, but I needed this community to help me get over it. The university officials and my friends and loved ones have helped me through this very difficult time."
"I will continue to cooperate with the authorities as I have from day one. I believe in the judicial system and I won't comment anymore on that. I hope that the trial comes quickly and we can do what all of you should be doing at this period in time: celebrating a BIG EAST Championship and a wonderful season where we once again finished in the Elite Eight with very dedicated players who paid the price to reach that pinnacle."
"The second thing I'm going to do, besides be quiet about the indictment, is that I plan on accomplishing one thing that is very, very important to me. I plan, regardless of how difficult a situation this is, to coach here at the University of Louisville for as long as I physically can maintain the passion I have for the game of basketball, which is still stronger than when I was a head coach at 24 years of age. I love the game. I love my players. I love this university as well as this community. I won't coach anywhere else. I don't believe in anything as much as I believe in this university and this state. So, as long as they'll have me, I'm going to coach here. I'm not a spring chicken, but I'm certainly not over the hill. I intend on recruiting the best athletes and the best people to this program and going a little farther than those Elite Eights in the many years to come. So I thank you as professionals. I know there are much more pleasant things we'd like to talk about, but I do want to apologize once again to my loving family, my wife and university officials, as well as the extended family with all of my players and the great fans we have here at the University of Louisville. So thank you all very much."
Here is the Rick Pitino Press Conference video.