Miller, Wade won't have to testify in hoops trial

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NEW YORK — A judge in a federal court ruled Friday that Arizona coach Sean Miller and LSU coach Will Wade will not have to testify in next week’s federal trial into college basketball corruption.

Miller and Wade were subpoenaed by Steven Haney, attorney for former agent-runner Christian Dawkins, but federal prosecutors filed a motion earlier this month to preclude the two coaches from testifying on the grounds that it was irrelevant.

U.S. District Court Judge Edgardo Ramos granted that motion Friday morning, saying that whether the defendants had relationships with coaches that they did not bribe was indeed irrelevant to the case.

Haney had argued that wiretap evidence of Dawkins speaking with Miller and Wade would show that he had conversations with high-level coaches and did not discuss bribing players on those phone calls. Those phone calls, Haney argued, would show Dawkins’ intent while also showing signs of “systematic cheating at the highest level.”

“The evidence establishes very clearly that Sean Miller is paying players at Arizona,” Haney said during Friday morning’s hearing.

When asked by reporters following the hearing about that statement, Haney said, “You’ll have to be here to hear the evidence.”

Andrew Mathias, attorney for defendant Merl Code, told reporters there were assistant coaches on his witness list, but did not specify any names. Mathias confirmed there were no head coaches on the witness list.

Dawkins and Code, a former Adidas consultant, were charged with bribing three assistant coaches to influence players to sign with Dawkins’ sports management company once they turned pro. Arizona’s Emanuel “Book” Richardson, Oklahoma State’s Lamont Evans and USC’s Tony Bland each pleaded guilty to one felony count of federal bribery charges.

The second trial for Dawkins and Code — who, along with former Adidas executive James Gatto, were found guilty in October of federal conspiracy and fraud charges — is scheduled to begin on Monday.

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