Georgia Tech president G.P. “Bud” Peterson offered his endorsement of coach Josh Pastner on Saturday in the wake of NCAA rules violations by two players and a report alleging that Pastner was aware of the violations but did not report them.
“The NCAA’s looking into it, and we’ll see what happens, but I’m proud to have him as our basketball coach,” Peterson said before the Yellow Jackets’ season opener against UCLA in Shanghai.
Peterson has been in China since Sunday on an academic and business mission and attended the game (Friday night in the U.S.) at Baoshan Arena. On Tuesday, a CBS Sports report identified the man who provided airfare, meals and apparel to Tech players Josh Okogie and Tadric Jackson, which the school deemed a preferential treatment violation. In the article, the person, Ron Bell, alleged that Pastner knew about the matter and tacitly encouraged him to provide the players with such benefits to keep them happy.
Peterson, who was limited in comments he could make because of his role as chair of the NCAA’s board of govnerors, evidently believes a different version of the account.
“I’ve got no problem with (Pastner),” Peterson said. “I’m glad to have Josh as our basketball coach.”
Tech withheld Jackson and Okogie from regular-season competition pending an NCAA resolution on the length of their suspension. Pastner has declined commenting on the matter until the NCAA announces its suspensions of the two players, but did release a statement earlier in the week.
"As I have throughout my career, I remain committed to following NCAA rules. Any allegations that NCAA rules weren't followed will be investigated thoroughly by our compliance department while I focus on coaching my team."