By Michael O'Brien

A busy day in Champaign

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First came word that Robinson junior Meyers Leonard gave an oral commitment to the Illini. Leonard, a 6-10 center, built a decent national reputation this summer, but most Chicago area recruiting analysts haven't seen him play yet.

Add Leonard to an impressive haul of 2010 recruits for Illinois coach Bruce Weber, including Crane's Crandall Head and Waukegan's Jereme Richmond.

Then came the bad news.

An arrest warrant has been filed for troubled guard Jamar Smith, who is on probation after pleading guilty last year to felony driving under the influence causing great bodily harm. He drove a car into a tree in February 2007, injuring former teammate and Proviso East grad Brian Carlwell.

Weber hasn't commented on the situation yet, but I would guess it is unlikely Smith will ever play for Illinois again.

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9 Comments

Boy Bruce Weber looks bad on this one. He backed the wrong horse.

It's sad that he couldn't beat the alchohol addiction, he is soo young. My 18 yr old has the same drinky problem, and it is tough to beat

I wouldn't say Weber looks bad. He never said for sure Jamar was clear to join the team again. In fact, recently all he said was "He's doing better but still has alot of bridges to cross." If anything, Weber looks like a prophet. Have a nice life Jamar. You're out.

How does Weber look bad on this one? He stood by a member of the illini family and gave him support. I dont always think he is a great (or even good) coach, but he runs a good program. You cant always control what 19 and 20 year old kids will do but you need to try and mentor them and help them, not cut and run at the first sign of trouble.

Although I am in no way supporting Jamar Smith, a college student getting caught at a bar drinking hardly constitutes addiction.

He gone!!!

I agree with Dino above - Coach Weber did the decent and honorable thing in standing by his player during a rough time, imposing sanctions and discipline, and providing Smith (under stiff conditions) a second chance to succeed. Let's not rush to judgment based upon a news bulletin that a warrant has been issued.

JAMAR SMITH WILL HAVE A HEARING SEPTEMBER 27TH IN
CHAMPAIGN, THE HEARING WILL DISCUSS HIS PROBATION,
SHOULD IT BE REVOKED OR NOT, HE COULD SERVE 12 YEARS
IN PRISON AT THE VERY WORST!
TO ALL STUDENT-ATHLETES WHEN A JUDGE PUTS YOU ON
PROBATION, AND PART OF YOUR PROBATION, SAYS YOU CAN'T
DRINK ALCOHOL, DON'T GO TO A BAR OR ANY PLACE THAT
SERVES ALCOHOL, BECAUSE GUESS WHAT YOU MAY HAVE A DRINK
AND YOUR PROBATION CAN BE REVOKED!
TO EVERYONE THIS IS A VERY SERIOUS SITUATION, AND I
HOPE AND PRAY IT DOESN'T HAPPEN TO YOU, GOD KNOWS WE
HAVE ENOUGH YOUNG MEN IN PRISON!

IT'S OFFICIAL JAMAR SMITH DISMISSED FROM FIGHTING ILLINI BASKETBALL TEAM!

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This page contains a single entry by Michael O'Brien published on July 29, 2008 1:51 PM.

Montini's Michala Johnson injured was the previous entry in this blog.

Northwestern picks up a recruit is the next entry in this blog.

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