By Michael O'Brien

It's official: Simpson to Illinois

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According to Simeon coach Robert Smith, Simpson gave an oral commitment to Illinois tonight.

"It's all due to his relationship with [Illinois coach Bruce Weber]," Smith said. "We talked about it a lot. You can't go somewhere because of an assistant. Stan liked Illinois because he got along so well with Weber."

Simpson, a 6-9 senior, transferred from Leo to Simeon over the summer. Smith said that Simpson's grades are not a problem, contrary to the rumors that started circulating this summer.

"That might have been from people upset that he left the other school," Smith said. "Stan's grades are fine. A school like Illinois wouldn't be interested in him if it was otherwise."

On Thursday, Illinois received oral commitments from juniors D.J. Richardson, Joseph Bertrand and Brandon Paul. Butler believes that Richardson being the first to commit played a large role in the surge of players headed to the Illini.

"D.J. is fun to play with," Butler said. "He gets guys to elevate their play. Just having him for a month and watching how much better he makes everyone, I was totally impressed. He's the best player in that class. He gets the ball to people in the right position and he's got a great attitude."

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This ought to silence the jackals ... for now.

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This page contains a single entry by Michael O'Brien published on October 15, 2007 7:39 PM.

Simeon center Stan Simpson expected to commit to Illinois was the previous entry in this blog.

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