The Harricks meet with NCAA

ATHENS - NCAA investigators met with former Georgia basketball coach Jim Harrick and assistant Jim Harrick Jr. for a second time last week and appear close to concluding their investigation into the program.

Jim Harrick confirmed the meeting Thursday but declined to give specifics. He said a second session was required because the first meeting lasted less than five hours, which wasn't enough time to cover all the details of the investigation.

"I never talked to them the first time," said Harrick Sr., who is now a scout and coaching consultant with the NBA's Denver Nuggets.

Harrick Jr. spoke with investigators during the first meeting and did so again last week, his father said.

"I think they asked him one more question," he said.

Harrick said he anticipates the most recent meeting will be his last involvement in the case.

"They never give you a definitive answer," he said.

If the NCAA feels it has enough information from the Harricks, that would clear the way for Georgia to receive its letter of inquiry from the organization. That letter was expected on campus as early as September, which would have allowed the school to appear before the infractions committee in October.

Now it's doubtful the school will make the February infractions committee meeting, meaning it will have to wait until April. Dennis Felton, who was hired to replace Harrick, said he understood when he was hired that the investigation would be complete by November.

Harrick resigned on March 27 after Georgia launched an investigation into former player Tony Cole's allegations that someone at the school paid for his hotel lodging in Athens and had junior college correspondence course work completed for him. Cole claimed specifically that Harrick Jr. gave him $300 to pay a phone bill and taught a class that basketball players were given an 'A' in without attending.

Georgia fired Harrick Jr. on March 5 after finding what it called "academic fraud." The school suspended Harrick Sr. five days later, and he quit 17 days after that.

Asked Thursday what questions he was asked by NCAA investigators, Harrick declined comment. He has signed a confidentiality agreement that forbids him from saying anything derogatory about the school.

"There's nothing to talk about," he said. "Let them do the talking."

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