College basketball is in the midst of an FBI investigation that is still unfolding. Brooklyn Nets guard Isaiah Whitehead is one of the players implicated.
The NCAA and FBI are looking into widespread corruption in college hoops and the list of players and coaches involved continues to grow. According to reports from Yahoo’s Pat Ford and Pete Thamel, Isaiah Whitehead of the Brooklyn Nets reportedly received anywhere between $26,136 and $37,657 while playing at Seton Hall.
The payments were distributed to players by ASM Sports. Whitehead was represented by ASM but has since joined Roc Nation Sports.
Whitehead probably won’t come under too much media scrutiny because he’s struggled to find time on the court this season. He’s only played in 16 games for Brooklyn this season and he’s bounced back and forth between Brooklyn and the organization’s G-League affiliate, the Long Island Nets. Although this may garner some attention, it shouldn’t become a huge issue for the Nets.
Whitehead is certainly not the most high-profile name involved in this story, but so far, he’s the only player on the Knicks or Nets to be implicated. It’s unclear how, or even if this investigation will affect players already in the NBA.
Dennis Smith Jr. and Markelle Fultz are two of the marquee names that federal investigators are looking into. According to documents obtained, both players received upwards of $10,000 during their freshmen years in college. The figure for Smith could possibly be as high as $73,500.
Where this story gets really interesting is in the current collegiate players implicated. Miles Bridges, Collin Sexton, Wendell Carter, and Kevin Knox are all possible lottery picks in the upcoming draft. Any suspensions could hurt the draft stock of these players. The Nets won’t be able to snag them in the lottery after their pick eventually made its way to Cleveland. They have the Toronto Raptors pick and even then, it looks like these four names will be gone by that point in the draft.
Bottomline for the Nets, this likely won’t have a huge impact on the team now or in the future. Although it’s possible that this initial reporting is only the tip of the iceberg.