A federal judge in South Carolina on Wednesday dismissed former Louisville signatory Brian Bowen Jr.’s lawsuit against Adidas and others who he alleged derailed his NBA career by promising to award his father $ 100,000 Pay to make sure he signed with the Cardinals in 2017.
Bowen, a five-star recruit from Saginaw, Michigan, sued Adidas America, Adidas employees Chris Rivers and James Gatto, former Adidas consultants Merl Code and Thomas “T.J.” Gassnola, former NBA runner Christian Dawkins and finance manager Munish Sood in November 2018, alleged they had violated the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act by bribing and frauding at the expense of his NCAA eligibility and athletic development and money laundering.
“The court is aware of the public discourse on the exploitation of athletes, and here Brian Bowen II was a little speech in a much larger wheel of the wider recruitment scandals and challenges college basketball is currently facing,” said US District Judge Joseph F. Anderson wrote in his decision.
“First and foremost, the court does not doubt that Bowen Jr.’s life was disrupted by disclosure of payments to his father and the University of Louisville’s decision to withhold him from NCAA competition,” the verdict said. “The court is also not ignoring the prosecution of certain individuals involved in these payments to Bowen Jr.’s father. While the plaintiff dedicates most of his arguments to these undisputed facts, they do not support the Racketeer-influenced and corrupt organizations law relevant (“RICO”) statutory permanent requirements. “
Louisville officials ruled Bowen was ineligible in September 2017, and he moved to South Carolina for the 2018-19 season. But the NCAA ruled him again and he never played in a college game. He played in Australia for a year and signed a two-way deal with the Indiana Pacers in June 2019. Last season he averaged 2.5 minutes in six games with the Pacers.
“The court agrees that the plaintiff had no right or no guarantee for the drafting, only an expectation,” the verdict said. “Student-athletes have no ownership interest in their expected professional careers. In addition, because Bowen Jr. claims he lost future income due to personal injury – an allegedly impaired ability to play basketball for not playing in the NCAA – Those.” who claimed to have lost profits would still be undetectable under RICO. Bowen Jr. had only an expectation (and not an entitlement to) a lucrative career, and that expectation, whatever its likelihood, is not an identifiable business or property Interest under RICO. “