Baylor Coach Taped - Again

Carlton Dotson, former roommate and teammate and alleged killer of Baylor University basketball team center Patrick Dennehy, 7-22-03 AP

The twin investigations stirred up by the disappearance and murder of Baylor University basketball player Patrick Dennehy continue to mushroom.

Carlton Dotson, who was dropped from the team and is charged with killing Dennehy, is due in court Tuesday in Maryland, the state in which he surrendered and was arrested last month.

Authorities are asking a judge to let them hold Dotson for another 60 days in Maryland while Texas prosecutors nail down the paperwork they need to successfully argue for Dotson's extradition.

The request for the delay is expected to be granted.

Meanwhile in Waco, Texas, investigators looking into allegations of NCAA violations at Baylor University have acquired another audiotape of former basketball coach Dave Bliss to inspect in the ever-widening scandal at the school.

Richard Guinn recorded a conversation Bliss had Saturday with his son, senior center R.T. Guinn, at their Waco home. Richard Guinn turned his tape over to investigators.

Richard Guinn wouldn't disclose the nature of the conversation, but said Bliss at one point apologized to R.T. Guinn, saying, "I'm sorry about the things that happened."

Kirk Watson, counsel for Baylor's in-house investigations committee, said he expected the committee to listen to the tape Monday. He said he did not expect to release its contents.

The investigative committee has already heard secretly recorded tapes in which Bliss apparently tried to persuade players and an assistant coach to portray slain player Patrick Dennehy as a drug dealer.

Those tapes - capturing conversations among Bliss, assistant Abar Rouse and players - indicate Bliss thought the drug story would steer investigators away from allegations the coach had improperly paid for Dennehy's tuition, an NCAA violation.

Baylor investigator David Guinn, no relation, said Sunday he had locked the latest tape away and had not listened to it.

Dennehy was found shot to death on July 25. An autopsy found no alcohol, opiates, amphetamines or barbiturates in his system, but his body was too decomposed to test for marijuana.

Richard Guinn said Bliss was composed during their meeting.

"He said he was scared of what was coming out on the tapes," Richard Guinn said. Bliss also brought a tape recorder to the meeting but didn't say why he wanted to record the conversation.

"I told Bliss we're not going to lie, we're not going to cover up, we're not going to hold back anything," Richard Guinn said.

Bliss resigned Aug. 8 when the school announced he had been involved in improper tuition payments to two players.

"What we've got to do here is create drugs," Bliss said on one of the first batch of tapes, which were recorded July 30 and 31 and Aug. 1.

Baylor investigators found no evidence Dennehy was involved in drug dealing. Baylor officials have said one unidentified player tried to use the drug story with investigators but he recanted once the tape surfaced.

Dennehy's body was found in an overgrown field in Waco on July 25th - four days after Dotson was charged with his murder.

Bliss admitted he paid players' tuition and acknowledged the attempted cover-up to both the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, which obtained the tapes, and to The Dallas Morning News.

Bliss told the Star-Telegram, "I feel so badly about this whole affair... The tapes, while they aren't the complete conversations, they are representative of an effort to try to share some of the stories that I had heard and I was completely wrong in what I did.

"But the bizarre circumstances painted me into a corner and I chose the wrong way to react. As of last Friday [Aug. 8], however, those days are over and I have cooperated completely and will continue to do so because I know I have disappointed a lot of people."

  • Jarrett Murphy

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