David Salinas, founder of a strong Houston AAU basketball program and an investment adviser whose clients included Gonzaga assistant coach Ray Giacoletti, committed suicide Sunday, according to Houston authorities.
Salinas, 60, was found dead Sunday, days after he was interviewed by federal officials probing a possible Ponzi scheme. He was reportedly under investigation by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for fraudulent practices that may have cost numerous high-profile coaches millions of dollars in investments.
Salinas founded Houston Select, which at one time included former Gonzaga point guard Demetri Goodson, 16 years ago. Goodson left Gonzaga after last season to pursue a football career at Baylor.
Giacoletti’s relationship with Salinas goes back 22 years, prior to Salinas’ formation of the AAU team.
“Obviously this is a tragic event,” Giacoletti said in a statement released by Gonzaga. “I’ve known David and his family and invested with him for the past 22 years. My heart goes out to his family and friends. It is my understanding the matter has been referred to the Securities and Exchange Commission for investigation.”
Giacoletti, a GU assistant for four years and a coach for 27 years, declined comment when contacted Monday night.
Some coaches might be concerned about their financial relationship to Salinas because it’s unknown how the NCAA would view college coaches investing money with the founder of a summer basketball program that sent numerous recruits on to college programs, CBSsports.com reported.
Ex-Arizona coach Lute Olson, Nebraska’s Doc Sadler, Baylor’s Scott Drew and Texas Tech’s Billy Gillispie are among the coaches who reportedly invested with Salinas.