Audit finds overspending on travel by Gophers' coach

Richard Pitino
Minnesota head coach Richard Pitino directs his team during the first half of a game against Illinois in Champaign, Ill., Feb. 28.
Rick Danzl | AP file

A University of Minnesota audit shows Gophers men's basketball coach Richard Pitino spent more than double his allowance for private jet travel since his hiring.

An audit to be considered by university system regents Thursday shows Pitino spent $325,000 on jet travel for recruiting and other university business in three years ending in February. His contract budgeted $150,000 for that period.

The report prepared by the university's Office of Internal Audit concludes that contract limits were not appropriately monitored. Senior associate athletic director Chris Werle says Pitino was given permission to overspend by athletic director Norwood Teague, who resigned last year following accusations of sexual harassment.

The audit of the men's and women's basketball programs showed both spent more than allowed on hotels, private cars, birthday or holiday parties, meals and valet parking.

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