By Michael O'Brien

Eric Gordon To Indiana

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Gordon officially changed his mind on Thursday night.

One of the most controversial recruitments in college basketball history appears to have reached a conclusion. Sources at Illinois confirmed Friday that Indianapolis North Central guard Eric Gordon, one of the top three recruits in the nation, has given an oral commitment to Indiana.

Gordon orginally committed to Illinois on Nov. 28. In late March, Indiana hired Kelvin Sampson and Gordon's recruitment seemed to re-open. While claiming nothing had changed, Gordon was repeatedly spotted on the Indiana campus. College coaches across the country have disagreed with Sampson's recruitment of a committed player.

Thursday night, Gordon delivered the news to Sampson and Ilinois coach Bruce Weber. Gordon can officially sign with Indiana on Nov. 8. He is expected to make the announcement official tonight at Indiana's Midnight Madness festivities in Bloomington.

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109 Comments

Kelvin Sampson is scum. Any kid who renegs is scum. They deserve each other.

Eric Gordon committed to Indiana what a shock. This proves that Coch Weber cannot recruit. He missed on Derrick Rose at Simeon, Sharron Collins went to Kansas as well as Julian Wright. Let not even talk about Jon Scheyer the kid who played for his brother and ended up at Duke although that may be alittle unfair since Duke was his dream school. But this trend does not look good for future Illini teams. Sure he has won a lot of games so far, but he has done it with Bill Self's players. I hope things get better.

the honeymoon is over for bruce webber, he has not recruited one solid player from the city suburbs whatever, he needs to go, this not SIU, illinois is big ten basketball and if the trend continues the illini will become bottom feeders, and kelvyn sampson is scum, his track record for underhanded recruiting is well documented

The question is...can Bruce Weber recruit? He had a great run with Bill Self's players but has yet to land a top recruit since he took over the program. It doesn't say much for Weber and how he is viewed by HS kids if he can't convince them to come to IL after all the success he's had over the last 2 years.

I'm sure this is controversial in basketball, but nothing illegal. Let's face it, Kelvin Sampson is doing what he should... looking out for his school and making it the best possible program he can.

Sour grapes to all Illini fans that disagree.

Bottomline Eric Gordon and his family screwed us... Had us tagging along for 2 years now we have no one else to recruit of his caliber.... Bruce needs to get tougher or hire a recruiting specialist cuz we are not getting the job done we need game changers like Gordon and Rose not players that take 2 to 3 years to develop... I'm very upset with the direction we going we should at least be able to get top instate players...

This isn't about legality, it's about ETHICS. Some folks obviously have no concept of that word or what it means.

I think everyone has to understand that the gordon's were the ones that contacted indiana and opened things back up once mike davis was fired. weber should have seen this coming and stayed on his recruit. All that happened here is Indiana took advantage of the chance Gordon gave them, and to be honest, I'd rather be in beautiful Bloomington, Indiana than dismal Champaign, Illinois. Illinois fans can cry about this all they want, but this happens all the time in football and has happened with top recruits in basketball numerous times as well. maybe coach weber should watch over his players and keep them from stealing from dorms and driving drunk...and you call that a classy program...where are your championship banners?

Weber has great recruits coming in and will remain a top contender in the B10. In 3 years time, he won't need to recruit; they'll be lining up to wear orange & blue. Frankly, I'm glad Gordon is staying in Indiana. Too much hype and expectations spell disaster for Sampson, just like his predecessor.

Whoever you are that is calling Sampson and Gordon scum better look in the mirror. Anybody who is calling a 17 year old kid scum because he wants to play at IU where he dreamed about playing his whole life, has issues. You sir, have issues....he's 17 and made a tough choice. If a 17 year old decision is all you have in your life...well, you are sad....

Chances are good that this young man will spend one yr at Indiana and then move to the NBA. Sampson could have used some ethical resolve and never confer with the Gordon family--and respected the commitment to Illinois.

I would disagree with calling the kid scum, but you dont verbal to a school if you are not 100% sure you are going there. If it had been his dream to play at IU then why would you verbal to another school before ruling out the chance that Davis would be fired. It is just not the right way to conduct yourself, i am not much older than Gordon, and you are only as good as your word, that is something a 17 year old kid should know. There was no need for him to string the Illini along if he wasnt committed to playing there. Hopefully Weber will be able to bounce back, but im not sure if he will be able to.

I would disagree with calling the kid scum, but you dont verbal to a school if you are not 100% sure you are going there. If it had been his dream to play at IU then why would you verbal to another school before ruling out the chance that Davis would be fired. It is just not the right way to conduct yourself, i am not much older than Gordon, and you are only as good as your word, that is something a 17 year old kid should know. There was no need for him to string the Illini along if he wasnt committed to playing there. Hopefully Weber will be able to bounce back, but im not sure if he will be able to.

Indiana fans seem drunk on the idea that Sampson is a great coach. Last year OU was suppsosed to be top 5 and wound up 52 in Sagarin. Nice job of coaching there. I guess when you are desperate any old trash can look pretty attractive.

Hey DIllini...I've been to Bloomington. It is a dump. Don't think Gordon went there because Bloomington is beautiful. It is still southern Indiana.

How is this different then the kids who play a year and then switch schools? At least Gordon isn't stealing a scholarship for a year before changing his mind. A mature choice for a 17 year old.

Well, he might be just a 17 year old kid, but I think he can plan on being played pretty physically for the 2 games he plays against the Illini before he jumps to the NBA. And we all know it is just a matter of time before Sampson gets IU put on probabtion. Unfortunately, his track record shows that this is pretty ethical for him.

First of all, those of you bashing Weber must be the same ones badmouthing Ron Zook. We don’t need fans like you, so you can take a hike. It’s no secret that our Championship team from two years ago (yes, I said Champion – NC had nothing on us that year but the refs) was mostly comprised of players that came in under Bill Self. But the fact is that it took Bruce Weber to get these guys to play as a team under an offense that was suited to their talents; something that Self could never do. Without Weber, the Illini would have exited the tournament after the first round, as all Self’s teams do.

Last I checked, Weber has plenty of talented players on the roster, proof that he can recruit. Sure, they aren’t going to go 32-1 this season, but how many teams in history have? I’ll bet they own Indiana for a long time to come.

While I won’t call Gordon scum, I certainly won’t wish him the best over there. Unfortunately he exemplifies the growing trend in this country in his lack of respect and the complete worthlessness of a person’s word. I’m not that old, so I don’t have any stories of what a person’s word meant during the Depression of WWII, but I certainly have enough respect for myself and those around me that once I make a commitment, I follow through. The UI and coach Weber have dedicated a lot of time and energy into him believing that he was a man of his word. I guess in the end he’s not a man at all and just a mere child. I certainly hope he learns the difference soon, or his “commitment��? to Indiana will be just a one-season stepping stone.

Finally, I won’t go into too much about Sampson other than the other blogger was right. He is scum. Who does this guy think he is coming into the Big Ten and pulling something like that? Regardless of whether he broke any rules, he violated every gentlemen’s agreement in the conference. It about being ethical and doing the right thing; being an honorable person. Well, I guess he through that out the window long ago, so why start now. I just hope that he isn’t planning on ever winning any Big Ten awards like Coach of the Year. He’s going to be awfully lonely sitting at a table for one at Big Ten luncheons.

This may be the only fun Samspon will have in the Big Ten. He will be the prime target now in Big Ten wars and he will not survive.

Remember these names:

E'Twaun Moore
Chris Wright
Corperryale Harris
Dorenzo Hudson
Jamelle McMillan
Evan Turner

These are guys that were interested in Illinois and they did not pursue because EJ was committed for a year!! Of course nobody really knows how Evan Turner's situation might have turned out if we would have offered him and McCamey months before OSU did!! Word was 2 or 3 months before he committed to OSU that Illinois was his top choice, they even had a headline on his Scout profile about this fact, but Illinois had not extended an offer yet and thus let OSU grab him. with Gordon out of the picture we might have offered both these guys and landed both at the same time, they were good friends and both wanted to come here badly! Too bad Bruce didnt know he would be stabbed in the back less then a month from signing day!!! With turner, McCamey and any one of those remaining 5 guys on that list Bruce would have had a very solid 07 class, now nobody is left!

Thank you Eric Gordon, you and your family are real class acts for stringing Bruce Weber along for a year, and destroying his 07 recruit class!!!

Look, everyone must understand that the recruting business is just that! It is for the kid to choose the best school for him, not all you fans that have no clue about what really goes on! I played college football at IU and its a great school. U of I is not the most attritive place in the Big 10, actually its one of the worst. The same goes for football, if you dont recruit your state you will not win. OSU football team is dominated by Ohio born players (Who happen to be ranked number 1). Gordon is from Indy so more power to Sampson and the IU basketball prgram!

Sampson tried to recruit Gordon to OU but he wanted to stay close to home. When Sampson got the IU job why wouldn't you contact him to check his level of interest. Question: if a kid vebally commits to a program as a junior then is unable to physically play does the school still honor the committment Answer: No Illini get over it!!

What a bunch of cry babies. Ethics this and ethics that. IU just stole one of the top players in the country from your program. You can say whatever you want but that is the hard truth. I love how everyone thinks Sampson is scum. For what, too many phone calls? Wow, he's awful. I'm sure if a top recruit contacted Weber and that recruit had verbally committed to another school, Weber would have said "I'm sorry but this is ethically wrong. I'm not interested." Give me a BREAK! Cry cry cry and then say bye bye bye to Gordon.

Illini fans should not lose any sleep over Gordon. Like another poster said, he's a one-year rental. He'll be off to the NBA after one year, the developmental league in two years, Europe in three and wondering what went wrong in four or five. And so what if Illinois doesn't get the top recruits from Chicago, Illinois or anywhere else. Other than Deron Williams, were any of the other members of Illinois' NCAA runner-up team considered "prime" recruits. It seems to me that Dee Williams was considered too short, Roger Powell was considered a player without a position because he was too small for power forward, Luther Head was an "athletic kid" who couldn't shoot, and James Augustine was, well, "tall." Seems to me you don't need the "cream of the crop" to be successful, just kids who buy into what you're doing, who are willing to work hard, who are good kids (and unless you have NEVER drank and drive, don't cast stones), and who check their egos at the door.

Calling a kid a scum is wrong, as others stated he is 17 and try to put yourself in his shoes. You grew up wanting to be play at indian and Mike Davis does not even give you the time of day. Then the situation changes at Indiana and you still have shot at playing at Indiana. Gordon came to Indiana, Sampson only started talking when the Gordon wanted him too. Come on people this is a young kid in difficult spot, give him a break. The Illini program will go on fine without him. Life is dynamic, get over it.

First, of all Kelvin Sampson is a big scum. Secondly, Bruce Weber has to turn his act around. He's gotta get more aggresive when it comes to recruiting. UI is doing nothing while the rest of the big ten is getting better

Oklahoma is a "dirty" school. Nothing but a bunch of scumbags. The fact that Indiana hired Sampson means they are now going to be a force in recruiting wars. They will, as evidenced by the Gordon affair, play dirty.

I think Coach Weber is very fundamentally sound but his small stature and squeeky voice doesn't impress the young jocks. They want bling and some *******. In defense of Weber, the loss of Gordon has more to do with Coach McClain (the ex-coach of the notorious Peoria Manual High School) then with Weber.

We Illini fans should be glad for the run we had. Major college programs (football and basketball) rely heavily upon good looking and slick talking Head Coaches (ever hear of Pete Carroll at USC?)and Bruce Weber, regretfully, is neither. If Illinois really wants to get down and dirty they should think about hiring Bob Huggins, the ex-Cincinnati head coach. Excellent recruiter, great coach and not afraid to offer a few "enticements" to get the great ones to come to Champaign. Forget the DUI crap, everybody has some "baggage" these days.

The sad fact remains, you are not going to win the national championship without a little "stink" on your fingers(unless you are DUKE)and Weber is too clean and afraid to bend the rules.

The Illinois job is way TOO big for Weber's personality...thats why they are missing out on kids, as well as the negative image he has in the Chicagoland Area amongst high school coaches!! Remember Lon Kruger......Weber makes things worst when he whines when kids dont come to Illinois and he accuses other schools of cheating and he bad mouths the players when they do not choose Illinois....WHAT A JOKE!!!!

Duke clean??? Duke is just as dirty as any other big-time program. We just don't hear about those underhanded dealings when it applies to Duke.

I love this.....Hoosier fans defending a chump like Sampson. He is a coach that with proven disdain for ethics. The Hoosiers or soo anxious to get back to the elite status they enjoyed under Coach Knight they are willing to approve any actions that will get them there, ethics be damned. The Hoosiers and Kelvin Pondscum, truely a perfect match of the ethically challenged. BTW...regarding Sampson as scum...I'm told when you live in the sewer you don't notice the smell. Go Illini!

This just goes to prove that verbal commitments aren't worth the paper they're written on. Let me say that again. VERBAL commitments aren't worth the paper they are WRITTEN on. Unless you have a SIGNED letter of intent, you have NOTHING.

I know it hurts, Illinois. There there. Let it out. It'll be okay. Here's an ice cream cone.

I'm glad the saga is finally over. Let that Hoosier be a Hoosier for one year. He'll be off to the NBA after his freshman year anyway. The NCAA needs to do something about the recruiting procedure and quit having kids verbally commit. Juniors and Sophomores have no idea about commitment anyway. Most change girl friends several times as well. I've basically given up on college basketball anyway. Too much hype and media. I'm cancelling ESPN FullCourt and March MegaMadness. Why pay DickH*)$# Vitale's salary? He's the biggest farce of it all.

I wish the Illini well but I'll be watching the NHL come winter. Go Sabres.

I think this guy knows alot more about college recruiting than all of us so take it for what you will.

"Would it be okay if Gordon said it was okay? Because that is what happened. No coach will waste his time recruting a kid that has said he is not interested. The coaches cannot talk about this, but Gordon and his people made it clear that they wanted to be "re-recruited" by Indiana. If Gordon's commitment wa so strong, why did he change fields? If Gordon had said to IU that he did not want to talk with them, I would agree with you. But that is not the way it happened. This kind of thing happens a lot in recruting." Jay Bilas - ESPN

Any Hoosier fan that blesses this recruitment process should ask themselves these questions:
1) If IL had recruited someone who "verbally committed" to IN, would you accept it without comment? I'll bet you would scream bloody murder and DEMAND a NCAA investigation.
2) Do you think Bobby Knight would have resorted to such recruiting tactics? I don't think so...
3) Do you think any other NCAA head coach would respect any future IN recruit's "verbal" commitment to IN? I think anyone who verbally commits to IN is fair game to other coaches until he actually signs a letter of intent.

Also IN fans, Bloomington isn't exactly "Nirvana" compared to Champaign. Get over yourselves.

Sampson did nothing wrong.

Sampson the scumbag and Adidas sneaker pimp Sonny Vaccaro found a way to get Gordon to IU, when they weren't even on his radar! Good luck kid, and I hope you enjoy your one year stay at IU, because you won't win any Big Ten titles or ever see the NCAA tournament, unless Vaccaro buys you a ticket.

As I posted before, Bilas said this sort of thing happens all of the time. I do not understand the hateful remarks towards these two people. Any coach would have done the same thing Sampson did if the number 2 recruit in the country wanted to open recruiting back up. Illinois is still going to be in the upper echelon of the Big Ten in hoops because Weber is a good coach, just maybe not a good recruiter. Scheyer is the kid who should be at IL. It really amazes me how people do not understand how this is a different situation than most.

Wow...such hostility! If I had to spend four years in Champaign, I'd be bitter too. Switching to Indiana was the right move for Gordon. You make it to 1 Final Four and suddenly you're a basketball powerhouse?!? Give me a break!
Anyone who calls Kelvin Sampson unethical, should take a long hard look in the mirror. Anybody remember Deon Thomas and the infamous Chevy Blazer? People in glass houses...

Maybe the NCAA should investigate & put Illinois on probation for 3 years, like they always do. How many NCAA championships did the Fab 5 win?
Go, Illini.

You know what... I'm OK with this. Weber should take the high road. He'll get his recruits... the Illini will win with what they have and will look just fine in the end.

Sampson already has a rep for having little integrity. This will catch up to him again eventually at Indiana and then he'd be lucky to be coaching Division 1 ever again.

If I had to choose between a coach that keeps his principles and wouldn't do something like this or one with no principles and would stop at nothing for a recruit, I'd take the former. Gordon or no Gordon... Weber's the man!

Jim....You state that coaches do this all the time. Check around at other opinions and you will find that they generally don't do this in college basketball. Gordon continually telling UI staff that he was coming cost them chances to get in on other recruits. That is why other (ethical) coaches don't do this to one another. You reap what you sow Hoosiers I can't wait until you get yours. Also, that rotten fetid smell in Bloomington is your once proud basketball tradition decaying. Go Illini

I am a student here at the U of I and I am definitley not shocked at us not being able to land Eric Gordon. Since Weber has been here he hasn't been able to land any recruits. Lets not forget that the team that made it to the National title game were all recruits of Bill Self. Weber just reaped the rewards of a team that was already in place ala Phil Jackson with the Bulls after the departure of Doug Collins. Lets just hope that with the next wave of athletes Weber will be able to snatch some up. That is if he hasn't lost his job by then due to numerous losing seasons.Tonight is midnight madness and class of 2010 number 1 recruit Jereme Richmond will be in the house lets just hope that things can start off on a positive note.

People, what it comes down to is this 17 year old kid changed his mind, plain and simple. If Weber and Illinois missed out on other recruits because of this saga, tough, they knew damn well this was going on and should have had a fall back plan. Champagne is a piece of poo.

Mike, justify it how you want, but among respected coaches this is not how they recruit. The Hoosiers have decided to throw their lot with an unethical coach and they will be forever marked. Also, good comeback on Champaign is poo. Now I wonder about the intelligence of Hoosier fans as well as their lack of integrity.

All this talk about bashing Weber and Sampson makes me fustrated. It doesn't matter if he gets the best recruits, he simply needs to assemble the best team with what he has. College basketball is not about putting 5 all-stars on the court... it's about putting the best team on the court. As an SIU grad, Weber did an awsome job with the players he had in C'dale (trip to Sweet 16 anyone???) I don't like the U of I one bit but I have the utmost respect for Weber and what he has accomplished as a coach. Get off your high horses and stop complaining about them. Both U of I and IU will still play well and compete every single year.

wait wait wait who am I?... "good comeback on Champaign is poo. Now I wonder about the intelligence of Hoosier fans as well as their lack of integrity". Silly child you make me laugh, the kid went with B instead of A, it doesnt matter what he told A, what matters is where he signs the dotted line. Sampson is under alot of pressure to turn this program around and what better way to do that than land the greatest in-state recruit since... well since never, this is the best recruit IU has ever had. Get over it.

Enjoy your recruit and your new coach Hoosier fans, because its just a matter of time before you're hit with NCAA sanctions like OU. Why else would he leave OU for your has been program?

Gordon leaving, big deal. Weber does need to get himself a strong recruiter though, as he obviously can't close the deal with the big time recruits.

If Indiana is so great, why did Adewale Ogunleye mention his high school on the Sunday night game against Seattle instead of his alma mater, IU??

I went to both UI and IU for undergrad and grad school. Descriptions of both schools on this board have been highly exagerrated. IU is nice but it feels SOOO small and is quite boring. Champaign is a little rough outside of campus but is much more vibrant overall. Secondly, this recruitment makes me sick. It's not just Illinois upset over this. Coaches AROUND the country disapprove of the mettling of Sampson because it's not an ethical, accepted practice. I am officially ending my membership in the IU alumni association.

I am an Indiana graduate and the fact is Gordon will only stay one year before turning pro, so who cares? Also, the kid was raised in Indiana so he and his family have an obligation to the state university..simple as that!

I am an Indiana graduate and the fact is Gordon will only stay one year before turning pro, so who cares? Also, the kid was raised in Indiana so he and his family have an obligation to the state university..simple as that!

another good article about how ridiculous the illini fans are acting...

http://cbs.sportsline.com/collegebasketball/story/9726347

First of all, Eric Gordon has just made the best decision of his life. By signing with the Hoosiers he has made himself an instant hero on a team that has been lacking in state talent. He will go down in history with the greats of IU basketball and will add another banner to the Assembly Hall rafters. Thats the Assembly Hall in Bloomington not that other one in that poo city of Champaign. Hats off to Kelvin Sampson for landing arguably the best recruit Indiana has ever signed.

Regarding the side comments comparing Champagne, IL, to Bloomington, IN, I can tell you that the I.U. campus has been rated among the most beautiful campuses in the nation several times. Lush and hilly with a nearby popular lake, the area is blessed with much natural beauty as evidenced by the thousands of acres of state park land. Not far is Nashville, IN, which attracts throngs of visitors and artists from other areas of the country.

Gordon will probably be a one & done player. I hear most college coaches are condemning Sampson. Obviously he purposely chose to ignore rules at OK. so why would anyone expect him to be ethical in this situation?

I agree with Redhat, he and his family have an obligation to the state university. I don't think anyone denies that fact. However, if this is the case Gordon should never of made that comittment to Illinois. Where was there obligation before Sampson arrived, I bet a few years from now we'll find out exactly how it was that he influenced Gordon to attend Indiana$$$$$$$$

I'm not really bothered by Gordon's awful decision. How many Nba players have played for Sampson? Also, Illinois still has a top 25 recruiting class and that hasn't happened for years. They will also have one of their largest most athletic teams in the year 2008.

It's all about Purdue for the next 4 years anyway. None of this even matters.

I want to echo the earlier mentioned comments of Webers ability as a COACH. Illini nation was drinking the coolaid during the Bill Self era. Those kids that he recruited that weber inherited were AVERAGE ballplayers at best and yet Weber was able to tap their full potential and get a bunch of "scrubs" in my opinion, to the championship. relax on indicting weber as a suspect coach because U of I doesnt exactly measure up in name to larger and more traditioned/storied programs in the country. Stop thinking u r in the same class as a DUKE or UNC or Kansas. And most importantly stop blaming the coach for what will always be a challenge- a school with an unimpressive body of work(athletically) for an entire century. U have never been a consistent powerhouse an to be honest, at best Illinois is and has been the equivalent to a mid-major of the likes of an SIU or Creighton. Lets be honest here people. Hensons run aside, Illini country has been disllusioned about their athletic program for damn near the 4 decades Ive been alive.

I continue to be very glad that Bruce Weber is our BB coach at Illinois, for his integrity and coaching excellence. Recruiting "skill" involves a substantial amount of underhandedness, and if Weber lacks that I won't lose a minute of sleep. While the Indiana fans want to defend their "ends justify the means" coach, with the arrogance of short-term "winners", they have lost all respect. Weber will continue to build a strong program Illinois can be proud of.

Hey indianaICE wake up. If Indiana was his dream school why did he ever talk to anybody else. Sampson left Oklahoma on probation. Indiana will be on probation over this. I'll guarantee there is something illegal going on. Sampson has proved to be a cheater.

I've lived in Big 12 (or Big 2 Little 10) country for 9 years. Sampson will get Indiana big recruits, big problems and 3rd or 4th place in the Big Ten at best. My prediction he won't last past 3 years. The Big Ten is a lot tougher than the Big 2 Little 10.

Weber will do just fine. I hope we can keep him at Illinois a long time. Just wait and see.

I've lived in Big 12 (or Big 2 Little 10) country for 9 years. Sampson will get Indiana big recruits, big problems and 3rd or 4th place in the Big Ten at best. My prediction he won't last past 3 years. The Big Ten is a lot tougher than the Big 2 Little 10.

Weber will do just fine. I hope we can keep him at Illinois a long time. Just wait and see.

The problem with this is that Gordon really lied for several months after he began talking to IU. He should have been honest about what he was doing. The lying made is so much worse for Weber and Illinois because he led them on and they wasted time and resources. Really, really unfair.

A kid can go to college where he wants, but just tell the truth to people whose jobs may depend on it.

Some of you need history lessons!

Jim, Deon Thomas never drove a Chevy Blazer and didn't receive $80,000 from UI either. An NCAA inquiry proved neither was true.

GC, just like the Collins-Jackson change with the Bulls, the Illini only reached a peak after the Self-Weber switch. Just as Frank Williams got worse in his 2nd year under Self, the current Illini in the League should pay Weber commission -- none of them would be making NBA checks if they'd finished their careers under Self.

Perhaps I'm dating myself, but anyone remember the "big recruit" that got away from Henson the year he signed Gill, Bardo, Anderson, etc...

Michael Christian the top PG in the country who ended up at Georgia Tech and did nothing.

What everybody forgets is that alot of black players would rather play for a black coach (i know alot of ya'll didn't know coach sampson was black, eh?) This is how Sampson has been able to attract talent to whatever programs he's leading - and believe me, it ain't easy convincing black folks to move to Norman, OK

ej and his family have ZERO INTEGRITY- nice job, Sr!! you raised a fine son.

i agree with the above posters who say they belong with a rule-breaking coach like kelvin.

If you believe it's just "a 17 year old kid changing his mind" you are hopelessly naive.

His mind WAS changed. But he wasn't the one who changed it.

Sonny Vaccaro, AAU coaches, parents and brothers and close family friends all with their hands out often change these kids' minds.

It's not just a young kid having a change of heart. It's the selling of a young man by others.

Sampson isn't black you moron. Are all Indiana people as stupid?

Sampson is Native American. And one of the biggest cheaters and slugs in college basketball today. If you Illinois folk don't think that there was some underhanded and illegal dealing going on here you have your head buried in the sands. And remember, one of the people that U of I president spent money supporting a few years ago, NCAA Prez Myles Brand has let it be known Indiana has a free pass when it comes to NCAA violations and any investigation into them.

Bet the Sun Times nor the Trib investigates what really happened too much or they won't get NCAA credentials come March.

Mike, listen son. It doesn't matter if Pondscum is under pressure...Weber is, I am...we all are...that is no excuse for recruiting after a verbal. It is no excuse for leading the UI staff along then switching at the last minute. Again one has to question the integrity and intelligence of Hoosiers, evidently all actions are excusable if you are just under pressure. Honesty and intgegrity be damned. Sucks to be Hoosier.

Weber CANNOT RECRUIT!!

He CAN coach and develop players but that'll only go so far in big time basketball and you need studs to have a chance at the Final Four. He seriously has to look at his staff and either make changes and/or hire a former Illini "name" player to put on staff to help in recruiting efforts.

I don't know what it is as to why he is losing recruits. It could be something as stupid as his "squeaky" voice, his un-cool looks or demeanor. First impressions count and he isn't making good ones.

BAM is a good person and it's sad this is happening to him but he has to produce. Memories of the Final Four run are short and he should look in the mirror and see Ron Turner. He too can "coach" but he couldn't get players. Well we know what happened to him. At least he has worked out for the Bears. Anyway if Illinois falls to mediocrity Guenther or hopefully a new AD won't be as patient to pull the plug on Weber as RG was with Ron Turner.

Bummer for Illinois. Bottomline, Sampson did nothing wrong or enethical. Unfortunately, Weber is a great game day coach, great coach and developer of talent and is probably even a decent human-being, but isn't a great recruiter. I'm sorry for Illini Nation and coach Weber, who seems like a decent guy. Bottomline, closers get coffee, not guys who finish second.

NUCat

This is nothing but gutterball tactics. If I were the IU administration I'd be very concerned over the ethical implications of what this guy just did. Talking about the coach not the kid. Kids are gullible but the coach like I said gutterball tactics. About Weber, Illini fans relax. We have an outstanding coach in Bruce Weber. The guy wins and knows how to win period. Sure this kid got suckered away from us. But I'am confident this is a only a temporary setback. We'll win with the right recruits. Can't wait to take on the Hoosiers this year. Gordon's gonna realize he was mistaken. Go Illini!!!!

Bad things happen to bad people. Have fun Hoosiers idiots you'll get yours for this Sampson clown. Watch him drag a once respected program into the ground. Probation awaits.

KS and IU did nothing wrong in this and IUs name isnt tarnished at all. Read Jay Bilas' take on all this, not ONE coach said they would do anything differently, not ONE.
As for the contention that BW didnt know this might happen is non-sense, he just had 2 in house visits with Dorenzo Hudson and Dar Tucker. He knew this might happen for a long time, so dont act like your in the know when your obviously not.

Plus, dont wish bad things on a 17 year old kid who had a tough decision to make. Whoever said Sonny Vaccaro had something to with this is just pathetic and IU was never on his radar. He grew up an IU fan, know the facts before you state them. He was recruited by KS at OU and actually thought about going there, it was just to far from home. KS was hired and things change when things change, sorry, so goes life.

Good luck to all this upcoming season........

Bleeding Hoosier Red in upstate ny

Gordon was 16 when he verbally committed....16!!!
If he didn't want to go to IU he wouldn't have spoken to IU, visited, or anything else. You people make me sick. Can you remember what decisions YOU made when you were 16? Yes it sucks for Bruce Weber and the Illini, but your talking about a kids life, and if he did not want to talk to IU, he wouldn't have. You people kill me with Sampson is scum crap. Bitter yes, informed....NO.

Keep it out, Illini.

It was a foolish move by Gordon. He now ends up with a coach who will not improve his game. Look at the Illini coached by Weber now in the NBA. Williams is becoming a star for Utah. Head has become a solid player for Houston. Brown, Augustine and Powell are now on rosters as solid rookies. What has Sampson done to prepare players for the NBA? Meanwhile the Illini don't need 1 and done players and develop team chemistry. Indiana loses in the long run as Gordon will leave and the Big Ten coaches now consider Indiana "verbals" as meaningless.

Due to NCAA rules, college coaches are severely limited in the amount of contact, particularly phone calls, that they can initiate with recruits prior to a recruit's senior year. Recruits can call coaches every day if they wish. Reading between the lines of this particular case, the Gordon family initiated contact with Indiana after verbally committing to Illinois. There are college coaches who would respect a verbal commitment and not talk with those athletes. There are other coaches who have questionable ethics who wouldn't hesitate to talk to a verbally committed athlete. I'll let all decide which type of coach is more ethically and morally challenged. Were any specific rules violated? No. But character is defined at the actions one takes when others aren't watching. In this case the entire Gordon family behaved unethically. If dad had any ethics, he'd have insisted that son honor his verbal commitment. He did not, and unfortunately, his 17-year old son is now rightfully perceived as scum. Coach Sampson's documented numerous NCAA violations already document his questionable ethics. Therefore he's also scum. I stand by my initial post.

I predict: 1) IU will not win a big ten title with Gordon; 2) IU will not win a national championship with Gordon; 3) Gordon will leave IU after his freshman year for the NBA; and 4) the NCAA will continue to investigate and punish Kelvin Sampson for Rules Violations.

While this situation absolutely sickens me, you cannot blame any of the interested parties. The truth of the matter is that the entire Gordon family had to be under a tremendous amount of pressure from those in their community to have Eric go to Indiana. There is a love of basketball in Indiana that ties closely to the Hoosiers. While this love has been lost over the years on some other highly touted Indiana recruits, the new hiring rekindled some of this love. On the other hand, Eric Gordon is a one year player, and I really don't think that Kelvin Samspon is that great of a coach (site his performance from last year), so if Indiana doesn't win next year, then Sampson may soon feel the same heat that Davis felt over his tenure...even if it does take a couple of years.
The unfortunate part is that Bruce Weber is recruiting in a state that does not have that same reverence for Illinois basketball. Weber is going to have to win with kids who play above their potential for the next few years in order for new recruits to want to come to the current program (unlike Indiana who is recruiting on historical significance)...if he can't, then we can welcome another long tenure of Lou Henson like years...but if he can, he has the chance to be a coaching legend.
The guy can coach, but until he lands a prized recruit, he will never be off the hot seat.

Dan Monson did this at Minnesota with Rick Rickert, a kid from Duluth who had orally commited to Arizona. Monson would call Rickert at 1 in the morning, saying he could not let him get out of state. And remember, Sampson couldn't call the kid -- it seems like it was Gordon's decision.

Its interesting to see how everyone is saying Gordon backed out of his word and blah blah blah. Well he's looking out for his own interest just like how all the fans are looking out for their own interest, which is their alma mater. I matter of fact is an Illini alumni and a big fan. I honestly dont think this kid will amount to anything. Remember when Bracey Wright was a big time recruit Indiana had. Well we had his teammate, Deron Williams, who wasnt even recruited by many teams. Deron Williams clearly had a better collegiate career than Bracey Wright.

I have no problem with Gordon going to his hoome state school. The problem I have is that when Indiana changed coaches, at that time Gordon must have know he might change his mind. At that point he should have told Weber that things have changed and he wanted to explore different options again. Weber wouldn't have liked it but would have respected the kid alot more than he does right now. Don't you wonder what kind of parent would tell their kid it's ok to not honor your promise. Not only did Indiana take a recruit from us, they also kept us from replacing him with a player of equal or close. to equal talent. Think people in Champaign will forget Sampson when he comes to Champaign this season or next year for Gordon. They will both be rode hard... possibly harder than any other oppossing player or coach ever has been.

Greetings from Bloomington, IN. i personally could care less about basketball or any other competitive sport(exc. Cubs) but this is absolutely hilarious reading all your comments.

You sound like jilted lovers, you were "strung along", "led on" and all the rest. You really must've been creaming for this guy, lol. You all sound like a bunch of amped up fools, maybe you should use all this excess energy to eradicate hunger and poverty, or stop the war or something.

One thing i must say in response to...
"Also IN fans, Bloomington isn't exactly "Nirvana" compared to Champaign. Get over yourselves."

... is that YES, Bloomington IS nirvana in comparison to Champaign. i was born and raised in that what they call illiana region. If i recall, Champaign is FLAT and surrounded by cornfields. You can hear the crickets from downtown. Bloomington, IN on the other hand has beautiful hills and forests surrounding it as well as quite a bit of urban open spaces. The IU campus is nicer and the community is a blast. Plus we don't have to worry about our houses getting drifted in under the snow during the winter. Even the weather is nicer here... Have a Nice Winter

i think anyone critisizing eric gordan should get a life. you peope are crazy. let a 18 year old live his life not one you want for him.

Do Illinois fans have a right to talk about ethics. Your fan base is calling a 17 year old and his family "scum". Grow up, and go back to school. Oh wait, I don't mean go back to Illinois!! Perhaps you can attend IPFW??

It is interesting how distaste for a competitive school can weigh in. Is Eric Gordon scum, no. He is a kid and that is all. Did he do something wrong, sure he did, he went back on his word and I hope that Sampson's influence doesn't promote future ethics issues with Eric. Sampson is a bad seed and the Sooner fans are left with his smoldering garbage. He cheated on recruiting, left a program on probabtion and then moved on, leaving the kids he recruited in a bad position. If I were IU, I wouldnt be hopping up and down yet. Remember Bracy Wright? A top player our of his class that turned out a dud and you cant blame Davis for that. And Sampson isnt scum, but he for sure is not what any young boy or a NCAA basketball association should look at as a role model or leader. He is a disrepectful person. I wish the best for Gordon and am anticipating opening the paper within 3 years to see the Hoosiers on probabtion. It will make the sun shine a little brighter in the sky.

Any Illini fans remember Bill Self? He could recruit but couldn't coach. Now we've got Weber, who can coach but can't recruit. I'm fine with the latter - Weber's system is based around fundamentals and a team first attitude. You simply cannot run that type of a program with one and done players. I hope he never recruits anyone in the top 25 (Shouldn't be hard evidently) because they will not stick around long enough to make an impact... it's just unfortunate that he lost the ability to recruit one of those top 50 scoring guards because he had a top 5 guy. Hopefully he learns from this. I think he can field a better team with 5 top 100 guys who play in the program for 3 or 4 years than a couple of top 25 star recruits - sharing the ball, playing defense, rebounding will always beat a flashy Dwayne Wade wannabes (Unless you have four of them... damn Tar Heels)

The least he could do however, is find some assistant coaches who can recruit - for all the Sampson bashing (He IS a scumbag for about a thousand reasons and not just this), it was his assistant coach who actually did the recruiting of Gordon because Sampson is on probation. So Weber got outrecruited by an assistant coach.

Last points:

1. Illinois can't compete with Kansas, Duke, UNC, Indiana and any other college basketball powerhouse until they win a national championship. It doesn't matter how good we are, until you win the big one, you're on the outside looking in.

2. It would have been ethical for Sampson to tell the kid no, that he had made his decision, and Sampson was going to respect it. It's one thing to steal guys from the Pac-10, another to do it within the conference. However, Sampson is not an ethical person. As far as I know he broke no rules, so he's not a cheater, just shady.

3. Anyone who thinks Bloomington is some sort of paradise compared to Champaign is obviously an inbred from central Indiana. Neither are glamorous, both smell like shit in the spring, and both are typical midwest schools in the middle of nowhere. Bloomington has more hills and it's harder to get into bars when you're underage, that's it.

4. 17 is old enough to start realizing the world does not revolve around you - unless you're a spoiled basketball phenom, in which case it does. If you give someone your word that you are going to do something, you follow through on that responsibility even if it ends up being to your detriment, it's called integrity. Eric Gordon has none. Sampson has none and did not want to teach Gordon about it. Gordon's family has evidently never heard of the concept. Some people place a high degree of value on integrity, others think it's a term from the 50's that means poor. Gordon might find Indiana better for a lot of reasons, and will probably eventually be an nba star - but he will never be a class act because he doesn't understand concepts like responsibility and integrity.

5. Sampson = Self, can recruit with the best of them, but can't get them to play together because he's a lousy coach.

As a huge Illini fan I must say you guys are making me sick. You are making us Illinois fans look like whiners instead of the classly fans we truely are.

I think Gordon is okay but we will get over it and move on. Instead of sounding like idiots lets forget about it.

Also what would we have done if the shoe were on the other foot and a top kid from Illinois showed interest in us and wanted to come here. We would be happy and the Indiana fans would be crying foul just like most of us are now.

Let's just forget about it and move on instead of looking rediculous to the rest of the world.

I also don't think IU did anything wrong if Gordon was the one who reciprocated the interest. Unfortunately for us IU picked one heck of a time to replace coaches.

Also Sampson may be a bit shady but in this case he did nothing wrong and was a proven winner at Oklahoma who just made to many phone calls.

We need to just get over it and move on with our lives instead of looking like crybabies to the rest of the nation.

Remember I am saying all of this as a huge Illinois Basketball fan who goes to every game every year.

BEARS!

its about time indiana got one of its own sons anyway! sean may to unc, oden to ohio state, and the possiblity of gordon going to the illini was too much. good for iu, good for gordon. besides...illini are douchebags anyway

sorry ui scumbags,you're squeaky voiced coach just can't recruit, and since we finally got rid of davis, the intelligent dope of coaching, most players will come to iu..recruit your own dirty state, and stay out of indiana

Since I graduated from NC back in the day, we have had three hungry players and they all won MR. BASKETBALL and they ALL played for a big time school. JASON GARDNER (ARIZONA) AJ Ratliff (INDIANA) and now ERIC GORDAN (INDIANA) MR BASKETBALL for ec is not the point here, the professionalism that EC carries is a NORTH CENTRAL attitude. Only the strong players survive in a world of critics and haters, so if anyone doesn't like the decision then that's your perception, but all I can say is, who will guard ec from ILLINI..I was there last year during sectionals against noblesville where he dropped 45 easy and he had a bad shooting night

IU basketball needs all the help they can get.

Sammyboy cheated while on an ethics committee and still IU hired him. This should give you insight into how desperate things have gotten at IU. Sammyboy was and will continue to do what he knows best: break rules.

Even with all this, it won't be enough. IU is probably no better than the 4th ranked program in Indiana right now.

Get used to it Hooies.

the reason gordon is going to IU is because he wants to shoot the ball as much as he wants. bruce weber is a team coach not a player coach. When they went to the final four they had a great team not one outstanding player. Gordon is all about the stats. Indiana should not be happy for getting him because as weber could of gotten him to become a team player kelvin sampson cannot.

Oh and purdue got 4 solid team players for 2007. Go boilers!

You know illinois is a runner up and thats all they will ever be. Sampson is a good coach....look at how the hoosiers are doing this year with what they have to work with. Get over in illinois....Gordan isn't a runner up and he doesn't want to play at your looser school.

I am a student at North Central, and have been in school with Eric since the 1st grade. Calling him scum is near insane. Let him do what he wants. He's 17, and he is trying to please everybody. If I was him, I wouldn't care what any of you people have to say, because he's gonna be making the money, not you.

I'm sure that Eric has been presured and has been trying to please everyone like the high school senior's post above explains.

Eric may be a really good kid. Unfortunately, others presuaded him to act in a manor that angered many people.

Eric should have been honest with Weber and stated that his committment was not firm that way Illinois could have offered the scholarship to whomever was willing to make a firm verbal committment.

Eric was pressured in so many ways. Higher ups at Gordon Sr's company were putting the strong arm on. A bunch of Gordon Sr's cronies were being hired by the University. The Indiana press and public were putting on all out blitz for Gordon. I'll admit unless the Gordons planned on moving to Illinois and Senior would be willing to work for another company, it was difficult for Eric to decide otherwise.

Also, Sampson was engaging in a text message blitz with Eric. My understanding was that Eric also had dinner at Sampson's home a few times.

OK, I'm starting to sound like the sour grapes Illini fan. I am sorry. The truth is Eric should have openly and honestly opened up his recruitment. That way Illinois could have pursued other options. Instead, Indyoldschool, AKA Papa Gordon, was screwing with Illini fans on Illiniboard.com and Papa was planning to string things out until the last moment to hurt Illinois. In fact, looking back you can now see the conspiracy playing out in Indyoldschool's posts on the Illiniboard.com.

Oh well, it will be fun watching games with all the fire back between the Illini and Hoosiera. Indiana will get to watch Eric's talent in full view for 1 year before he makes his millions.

wait a second, every single coach in college basketball knows or should know that a verbal commitment is not binding... the rules have not changed... this isnt the first time this has happened, nor is it the last... its part of recruiting... weber is just being a crybaby and so are all the other illini fans talking about "ethics"... this isn't an ethical issue, its a recruiting issue.. do you think if the tables were turned weber would have said uh, no.. you already committed to indiana, we can't take you here... fat chance

I truly enjoy reading how a 17 year old 'scumbag' has formed opinions on people hundreds of miles away over a game of basketball. Is he good? Yes. Is he great? Looks to be.

I feel the Illini fans are asking the wrong questions and barking up the wrong tree. The kid did no wrongs here, he made a decision and altered it. We see these types of things every day here in America, but we're only willing to bash someone on it when it affects our team. Business do this every day, restructuring, layoffs, changes every day, hell look at our politicians who voted for Iraq, now it doesn't seem like such a good idea.

Can you blame the kid for not wanting to play for Mike Davis? I don't think anyone can. But a coaching change happens and you people act like this 17 year old is the anti-christ causing Armageddon to reign supreme.........get a life folks!

that and, GO IU!

First of all Gordon is an IU fan at heart but who the hell in their right mind would play for an idiot like Davis? Sampson has not done that bad of a job and has a winning record. You all should be pretty damn happy with the way he has used the same kids and turned the program around. You must all come to the realization that Knight while he is GOD in Indiana he is gone and will never be back. So quit your whining and be happy that Davis is GONE. As far as Gordon wanting to play for IU he likes to shoot and IU's offense revolves around shooting gaurds bombing threes. He will stick out better at IU than he ever would at Illi so be happy hes coming!

haha we got him haha you don't

all illinois fans u can kiss the ring in 2 years

Indiana can gloat all they want, but Gordon will only be at Indiana for 1 year , which wont be enough time for the Hoosiers to win a National title, after that Gordon will leave to the NBA. Then Sampson will have sanctions at Indiana and cripple their program just like he did at Oklahoma. Sampson is a hack , and Gordon is a lier.

Just move on.


How can anybody look at Sampson and Weber and call Sampson the dirty one? What about Weber not shaking Sampson's hand, or the idiot Illini fans crying like the uneducated babies they are?
A verbal commitment is basically saying "yeah, I think that's the right college for me -- for now". Thousands of kids change their mind about which college to attend every year - Gordon is one of those kids.
Please, for the love of all that is holy, get over the UNC game. That team was loaded with NBA talent and a coach who is 10 times better than Bruce Whiner. The refs did not have anything to do with that game.

COACH SAMPSON DID NOTHING WRONG IN THE RECRUITMENT OF E.GORDON.AND HE WILL HAVE A GREAT CAREER AT I.U

What an exciting game that was last night. I would have been disappointed for Eric and the Hoosiers if they would have lost the game. Of course they should have lost the game anyway. But thanks to Pruitt for one, IU is VICTORIOUS! HA-HA-HA. Considering the bad attitudes of Illinois players and fans, they are very deserving of this lost and of course wallowing in self pity.

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This page contains a single entry by Michael O'Brien published on October 13, 2006 11:11 AM.

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