A couple of days ago, Joseph Santoliquito at Philly Voice filed a lengthy report on the Catholic League’s Neumann-Goretti girls basketball team. The Neumann-Goretti team is currently the best in the country, led by senior forward Christina Aborowa, who had committed to the University of Texas next year on a basketball scholarship.
But after Aborowa faxed over her official national letter of intent, the AD and women’s coach at the University of Texas received a strange email. Santoliquito continues:
In the email were unsubstantiated allegations of the African girls on the Neumann-Goretti girls’ basketball team … questioning their NCAA eligibility, including Aborowa and her 6-foot-9 Nigerian teammate, junior Felicia “Fee” Aiyeotan, who could be one of the nation’s most recruited high school basketball players—boys or girls—next year.
The email, under the pseudonym “Kyle dUNN” with the email address “ktginpa@XXX,” was circulated to other “undisclosed” coaches that could be recruiting the Neumann-Goretti players.
It attempted to discredit the NG program, alleging that the African players on the Saints, here legally, are older than their actual age and are in the United States illegally. Contents of the email were posted on comment forums of media websites (since removed) alleging institutional misconduct, and stating that the “FBI” is looking into the matter.
But Philly Voice looked in to who could have sent that email. And, as it turns out, it wasn’t just some worried fan or super-patriot. It’s likely they were sent by Archbishop Wood girls basketball coach John Gallagher. The message was sent from an email address that is registered to Gallagher and his home address, and Gallagher “through an attorney neither confirms nor denies sending the email to Aston ‘and others.'”
Cool. We got to the bottom of this, and now we can fix it, right? Well, not really, because Archbishop Wood has reportedly known their coach was sending these rivalry (and/or xenophobia) driven emails since December. In a sentence we’ve heard in varying forms for years now, “the Archdiocese has known about the situation since Dec. 1, 2014, and declined to do anything about it.”
The story has now gone national on Deadspin, so maybe something will come of it. Probably not, though. “Forget it Jim,” I hear in my head. “It’s the Catholic League.” Santoliquito whole piece is a must-read on this nice weekend afternoon when nothing else is happening in this city’s sports-draught.
screengrab via 6ABC