By Michael O'Brien

Is Simeon coach Robert Smith headed to Illinois?

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Simeon coach Robert Smith is ready to talk with Illinois coach Bruce Weber about the assistant coach opening in Champaign.

"If the opportunity arose I would definitely take it," Smith said. "I've always wanted to coach at Illinois."

Smith said he and Weber have discussed Smith's college coaching aspirations in the past, but never about any position at Illinois. Smith was listed as a candidate for the job in the Champaign newspaper today.

"I called coach Weber today but couldn't get a hold of him," Smith said.

Smith, who led the Wolverines to the last two Class AA state titles, has always been a vocal supporter of Illinois.

"As a high school coach I've tried not to be too biased," Smith said. "I want kids to go to Illinois, but you have to let them make their own decisions. I want Illinois to be one of the best teams in the country. I could help them do that as an assistant coach."

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Smith may be a good fit but Illinois NEEDS AAU ties...period.


10. Al Allen, Oak Park HS coach (trend down): his statement regarding Shumpert "there is no list" makes him a favorite of the "Coach Weber right or wrong" crowd, who took it as sign of Allen's loyalty to Illinois. Let the record show that Shumpert dropped Illinois from his list.

9. William "Wolf" Nelson, Farragut HS coach (trend sideways): his statement regarding Dunigan "I may not agree with his decision but I respect it" could be the mantra of the current staff.

8. Landon "Sonny" Cox, former King HS coach (trend well hidden): a proven recruiter, so much so that opposing high school coaches are still angry about it. May be just what Illinois needs.

7. Ron Zook, Illinois football coach (trend up): perceived as an excellent recruiter who brings in good players and leaves them how he found them. A win-win situation: Zook brings in the talent, Weber "coaches them up".

6. William Wesley aka Worldwide Wes, a very good person to know (trend not publicly available): former shoe salesman, current mortgage broker, widely believed to be one of only two people (see also #5) who understand from first hand experience how basketball works today. Allegedly involved in basketball at all levels (high school, college, pro) but this has never been proven. Will get the job done quietly, in the manner of a silent ninja.

5. Sonny Vaccaro, Nike representative (trendsetter): the architect of the club/summer ball system that has come to dominate American basketball over the last ~25 years, a period that Bruce Weber seems blissfully unaware of. Weber gets props for being an old school coach/teacher, let's see how he does as a new school student. Learn at the feet of the master, grasshopper.

4. Anthony Longstreet, Crane HS coach (trend unlikely): let the healing begin!!! Who doesn't want to see coaches Long and Weber in a long, warm embrace? Afterward, it will always be 82 degrees and sunny outside, cats and dogs will live in harmony and butterflies will be everywhere. Also, Isiah Thomas will give Will Bynum a long-term guaranteed contract.

3. Dave Weber, Glenbrook North HS coach (trend disappeared after March 2006): Bruce Weber's brother. He "coached up" Jon Scheyer, all the way to Duke. Let's double the Weber magic!!!

2. Jimmy Smith, local basketball PA announcer (trend uplifting): "It's showtime", all the time. Plus he arrives with his own boom box and CDs, ready to get the party started. A good time is always had and Illinois needs that right now. (Absolutely no disrespect intended.)

1. Dorothy Gaters, Marshall HS girls coach (trend up to the rafters, where the banners are): Illinois needs a proven winner and there is no denying what she has achieved. So step aside fellers, she's coming through...

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This page contains a single entry by Michael O'Brien published on September 6, 2007 8:09 PM.

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