Skip to content
Subscriber Only

How Adidas’s American Revival Turned Into Scandal

  • Sneaker company doubled-down on high school, college players
  • Execs allegedly hid player payments through phony accounting
Video player cover image

NCAA Bribery Scandal Raises Stakes for Adidas

It was in a Las Vegas hotel room where, prosecutors claim, the head of an elite youth basketball team from Florida and a coach from the University of Louisville planned their strategy to steer a young phenom to the Cardinals.

They agreed it would take cash for the teenager and his family, payments they’d have to hide from the National Collegiate Athletic Association, according to a criminal complaint unsealed Tuesday. The youth coach said Adidas would help out, that the company sponsored his team and was eager to cement its relationships with NBA prospects. “All my kids will be Adidas kids,” the coach said, according to the complaint.