UTEP Assistant Hoops Coach Resigns in Wake of Scandal | Athletic Business

UTEP Assistant Hoops Coach Resigns in Wake of Scandal

Fallout continues from the massive college admissions scheme, and the latest shoe to drop comes at the University of Texas at El Paso, where assistant men’s basketball coach Lamont Smith has announced his resignation.

ESPN reports that the move comes as Smith was implicated in the admissions scheme during his tenure as the head coach at the University of San Diego.

Smith had been the coach at USD for parts of three seasons, beginning in 2015. After being arrested on domestic violence charges, which were later dropped, Smith resigned at USD in March 2018 before landing at UTEP.

In a statement, USD said that the Department of Justice had issued an order restricting their ability to disclose the identity of the coach, but that order was modified to allow them to disclose Smith’s identity. UTEP learned of Smith’s involvement, and hours later announced that it had accepted his resignation.

Though Smith was not among the 50 individuals indicted by the DOJ when the scheme was revealed last week, his involvement was outlined in a government document. A cooperating government witness was able to provide evidence that Smith was involved in getting a student accepted and enrolled on campus during his first season at USD. Smith allegedly received test scores and a high school transcript from an individual named as a defendant in the bribery case on behalf of Robert Flaxman, the student’s father.

Flaxman, a real estate developer, is alleged to have wired $250,000 to a phony charity operated by mastermind Rick Singer in order to help get his son admitted under the guise of being a basketball recruit.

The government complaint against Smith doesn’t reveal whether he was paid for his role in the scheme, but does indicate that he was informed that Flaxman’s son had been admitted.

Buyer's Guide
Information on more than 3,000 companies, sorted by category. Listings are updated daily.
Learn More
Buyer's Guide
AB Show 2023 in Baltimore
AB Show is a solution-focused event for athletics, fitness, recreation and military professionals.
Nov 1-4, 2023
Learn More
AB Show