BATON ROUGE, La. — LSU Athletic Director Joe Alleva announced Sunday night the university is reinstating men’s basketball coach Will Wade.
Wade had been suspended since early March, after FBI wiretaps came to light, but more than that, because he then refused to deny any wrongdoing and refused to meet with LSU.
That changed on Friday, when Wade met with school officials to discuss his future with the program.
Wade released a statement Sunday night, and it says the things you’d except him to say. He apologized to fans and to the university, he said he understands why they suspended him, then this line:
"I intend to sit down with my student-athletes and co-workers to explain what has happened during the last 30 days and how I intend for us all to move forward."
Those are the kind of things you’d expect him to say. He sounded happy.
Alleva's statement, however, said a lot more even though it said less.
What Alleva didn’t say was, 'I welcome our coach back,' or 'we believe in our coach.' He stayed away from all those things. Instead, he said:
"...he answered all questions and denied any wrongdoing in connection with recently reported allegations of irregularities in college basketball recruiting."
“Coach Wade's explanations and clarifications offered during the meeting, absent actual evidence of misconduct, satisfy his contractual obligation to LSU."
You can hear it: A lot of official language, not, 'We're happy.'
There’s a big distance in the two statements and it'll be interesting to see how that plays out.
Clearly, LSU needs a relationship to come back together in a big way.
But for now, Will Wade is reinstated as LSU’s men’s basketball coach.