Report: Miles Bridges' mom named in college basketball investigation
Cynthia Bridges, current MSU men's basketball standout Miles Bridges' mother, is alleged to have received "hundreds" of dollars from Christian Dawkins, an associate of former NBA agent Andy Miller, according to documents and bank records obtained by Yahoo! Sports in the wake of a federal investigation into the underworld of college basketball.
While the report states players from Division I programs from across the nation received thousands of dollars, Cynthia Bridges received hundreds of dollars in advances, according to Dawkins' expense reports.
Specifically, the article states expense reports dated for May 3, 2016, from Dawkins allegedly took Bridges' parents to lunch at the Redwood Lodge in Flint for $70.05. That same day, Dawkins allegedly gave Cynthia Bridges an advance via "ATM withdrawal" in the amount of $400.
Yahoo reported it did not view all of the documents the federal government possesses. The document with ties to Miles Bridges was not included in the photos of spreadsheets shown in the report.
Miles Bridges, a 6-foot-7 native of Flint, announced last April he would return to MSU for his sophomore season, despite potential to be a lottery pick in the 2017 NBA Draft. It's unclear at this time if Miles Bridges knew of the alleged meetings or alleged cash payment.
Media outlets such as CBS, Sports Illustrated and others still project Miles Bridges as a lottery pick in this year's draft, if he doesn't come back for a junior season.
According to documents, Dawkins also had dinners listed with MSU head coach Tom Izzo, who has been under scrutiny after a string of ESPN reports released in recent weeks alleging a culture of sexual misconduct and violence against women.
The State News contacted MSU Athletic Communications for a statement from Izzo, but did not receive comment by the time this story was published.
The Spartans play Wisconsin at 1 p.m. on Sunday.
Cynthia Bridges was also unavailable for comment at the time this story was published.
Three current criminal cases are tied to the investigation. The documents reviewed by Yahoo showed the extent of potential NCAA ramifications from the case that could create NCAA rules issues. The report claims NCAA violations — both current and retroactive — for at least 20 Division I programs and more than 25 players.
Dawkins, a 24-year-old business associate of Miller — and his agency, ASM Sports — was arrested on Sept. 26, 2017, and faces felony charges of wire fraud and bribery in two of the three criminal cases tied to the investigation.
Thus far, four former college basketball coaches have been arrested: Southern California's Tony Bland, Auburn's Chuck Person, Arizona's Emanuel Richardson and Oklahoma State's Lamont Evans. Two basketball players at Auburn have been suspended amid the scandal. USC has also withheld a player.
Six other participants in this scandal have also been arrested: former sneaker executives James Gatto and Merl Code, financial adviser Munish Sood, former referee Rashan Michel and AAU coach Brad Augustine.
Charges against Augustine were later dismissed without explanation, according to the report.
The scandal also cost former Louisville coach Rick Pitino his job. The university parted ways with Pitino, a Hall of Fame coach, after the details of the program's involvement in a six-figure agreement to sign five-star recruit Brian Bowen was publicized. Former Louisville athletic director Tom Jurich was also dismissed.
NCAA President Mark Emmert released a statement Friday about the Yahoo report.
“These allegations, if true, point to systematic failures that must be fixed and fixed now if we want college sports in America,” Emmert wrote. “Simply put, people who engage in this kind of behavior have no place in college sports. They are an affront to all those who play by the rules. Following the Southern District of New York's indictments last year, the NCAA Board of Governors and I formed the independent Commission on College Basketball, chaired by Condoleezza Rice, to provide recommendations on how to clean up the sport.
"With these latest allegations, it's clear this work is more important now than ever. The Board and I are completely committed to making transformational changes to the game and ensuring all involved in college basketball do so with integrity. We also will continue to cooperate with the efforts of federal prosecutors to identify and punish the unscrupulous parties seeking to exploit the system through criminal acts.”