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IUALUM03

Hot Take by Lance Stemler on Kelvin Sampson

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Was scrolling through thee old facebook and saw this under the Hoosier Nation Fan Page group and thought this could stir some conversation...

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I do think that team had a shot at the final four had he not been fired. I also believe he would have hung a banner had he kept his nose clean. Off the court was one thing, but between the lines he could/can coach. 

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Watched one of their games the other night.  I believe Houston currently sits at 21-5.  I wish IU were sitting at 21-5.

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I found interesting his comments on the grades.  Most of the time, narrative that followed Crean was the 13 F's and so on, but what he said was pretty logical.  Despite Sampson's faults, I really believe that team did fall apart off the court due to a lot of the chaos around his departure and had less to do with Sampson.  Also, while it bit him in the ass on many occasions, I always felt Sampson targeted gets who might be a little more high risk for trouble, only because he felt he could pull them in and turn them towards a direction leading to a better life, which is why I always hated the term "thugs" that gets thrown around regarding his players or even other coaches like Bob Huggins. I am sure if you dig deeply, the players that took advantage of that opportunity far outweigh the Bassets, Mackeys, etc. 

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I have played ball many times with a guy from that team and he would echo very similar sentiments.  I don't personally disagree with the take either.  I have a huge separation in my mind the crimes of guys like Sampson, Tressel and Pearl compared to guys like Pitino, Izzo, Williams and many more.  

EDIT TO ADD:  The guy I know from that team would have a better understanding of Indiana basketball history and culture than the vast majority of people.  

Edited by KoB2011

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5 minutes ago, IUALUM03 said:

I found interesting his comments on the grades.  Most of the time, narrative that followed Crean was the 13 F's and so on, but what he said was pretty logical.  Despite Sampson's faults, I really believe that team did fall apart off the court due to a lot of the chaos around his departure and had less to do with Sampson.  Also, while it bit him in the ass on many occasions, I always felt Sampson targeted gets who might be a little more high risk for trouble, only because he felt he could pull them in and turn them towards a direction leading to a better life, which is why I always hated the term "thugs" that gets thrown around regarding his players or even other coaches like Bob Huggins. I am sure if you dig deeply, the players that took advantage of that opportunity far outweigh the Bassets, Mackeys, etc. 

Sampson was/is a very good coach.

Even going to agree with you that Sampson was the one to give questionable players and their behavior the benefit of the doubt.

However, Sampson was much too lenient, in that respect.  Let's recall the tournament in Chicago. Where Sampson allowed a group of his players to stay back, and join the team later.  Only problem was.... they did not come back when they were supposed to... and never got in touch with IU or Sampson as to their where a bouts. When they eventually returned to B-town.... Dakich asked Sampson what he intended to do about them.  And Sampson told Dakich :  "I'm just glad they came back."  Subsequent to their return, they were tested for drugs, which they all failed.  And so.... a series of suspensions happened as a result.  One after the other... not all at one time, which is what should have happened.

And lastly.  Not picking on you. As time tends to erode memories.  But... after Crean was hired. And when he went to an academic meeting.... he was informed that his team had gathered 19 F''s (not 13) for that semester..... and also that many of them never even attended class after coming back from Chicago. 

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2 hours ago, milehiiu said:

 

And lastly.  Not picking on you. As time tends to erode memories.  But... after Crean was hired. And when he went to an academic meeting.... he was informed that his team had gathered 19 F''s (not 13) for that semester..... and also that many of them never even attended class after coming back from Chicago. 

Not saying it’s the right thing to do, but when Sampson was let go, the kids saw the writing on the wall and gave up on school. When he was actively coaching, the team did fine with grades. 

I’m not gonna delve much deeper into this but Sampson would’ve hung a banner.

With that said - I’m very happy with our current coach 

Edited by Hoosier987
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October 12th, 2007. That morning my wife and I attended a Coaches vs Cancer breakfast at Assembly Hall with Coach Sampson,  staff,etc..sat with Rob Senderoff. Dakich was there,  the whole gang if you will....I remember leaving there thinking these guys are good coaches but something didn't feel right with them. It didn't feel like IU but I told myself I don't care about minor rules as long as we win.

Technically I sold myself out for the wins. Justified it all season long. Final 4 team no doubt. I never got over that Sampson made me change the way I view IU basketball because I was willing to justify a few rule violations. Never again. That whole era of IU still ticks me off. Still does.

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I really don't think it can be assumed Sampson would have hung a banner at IU.  Regular deep runs, probably, banner(s), no. While he was a stellar defensive coach, offensively his teams frequently struggled without great talent and even when he had great talent(Gordon) he didn't take full advantage of it.  

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21 minutes ago, hoosierBGH said:

I really don't think it can be assumed Sampson would have hung a banner at IU.  Regular deep runs, probably, banner(s), no. While he was a stellar defensive coach, offensively his teams frequently struggled without great talent and even when he had great talent(Gordon) he didn't take full advantage of it.  

IIRC we were ranked top 5 just throttled highly ranked Michigan St team at home before Mr. Cook (may he rest in peace) sent a check over to Assembly Hall for $750k to finish it off.

Not saying banner....but that was a Final 4 team.

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3 minutes ago, Seeking6 said:

IIRC we were ranked top 5 just throttled highly ranked Michigan St team at home before Mr. Cook (may he rest in peace) sent a check over to Assembly Hall for $750k to finish it off.

Not saying banner....but that was a Final 4 team.

Don't forget EJ was playing with an injured hand. The bottom fell out of that season only after the scandal broke.

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2 hours ago, Seeking6 said:

October 12th, 2007. That morning my wife and I attended a Coaches vs Cancer breakfast at Assembly Hall with Coach Sampson,  staff,etc..sat with Rob Senderoff. Dakich was there,  the whole gang if you will....I remember leaving there thinking these guys are good coaches but something didn't feel right with them. It didn't feel like IU but I told myself I don't care about minor rules as long as we win.

Technically I sold myself out for the wins. Justified it all season long. Final 4 team no doubt. I never got over that Sampson made me change the way I view IU basketball because I was willing to justify a few rule violations. Never again. That whole era of IU still ticks me off. Still does.

I felt the same way about him.

I'm thankful that IU never hired Pitino or Cal for the same reason. I remember hearing something about if things went a slightly different way we would have had Louisville's AD before them and possibly he would have hired Pitino and Petrino for us instead of them. I remember Cal being rumored at least once over the years.

What would you do if IU hired a coach like that? It would be awful because you either continue to support the team you love with the fear that the coach is cheating or you no longer support the team and lose something you love. Lose-Lose situation.

Edited by cybergates

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2 minutes ago, cybergates said:

I felt the same way about him.

I'm thankful that IU never hired Pitino or Cal for the same reason. I remember hearing something about if things went a slightly different way we would have had Louisville's AD before them and possibly he would have hired Pitino and Petrino for us instead of them. I remember Cal being rumored at least once over the years.

What would you do if IU hired a coach like that? It would be awful because you either continue to support the team you love with the fear that the coach is cheating or you no longer support the team and lose something you love. Lose-Lose situation.

There was a point and time where I said the heck with the rules and look the other way in the name of wins/titles. So wrong. Now I wish we would play the game a little more but not if it means in 5 years we'll be front and center on every site for months like Sparty is. I love IU so much....couldn't stand the thought of she being made fun of. 

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I think I'm on record somewhere (HSN 3.0, 2.0 or 1.0) praising Sampson as a 'on-court' basketball coach. When his teams were playing good they were as tough as nails. I loved the stories surrounding the bubble drills in practice and the guys just going at it.....brawling almost. 

I can't speak for the players' character or off court issues because I don't know the real story behind them....none of us do and Stemler is right in that aspect. BUT Sampson came into IU under the microscope for making too many phone calls at Oklahoma and he did the EXACT same thing at IU. Of all the infractions he needed to be careful of....don't make extra calls! He was either extremely careless (which is a bad thing for the man leading our program) or he thought he was above the rules (a worse thing for a man leading our program and in the shadow of Bobby Knight). 

Look, I understand that the whole phone call issue was a stupid rule and that it's no longer a rule. BUT it was a rule and when rules are broken there are consequences. Hey, I think marijuana laws are ridiculous, but I'm not going to go out and sell it and then be surprised at the consequences if I get caught. It's not an excuse. 

Edited by tdhoosier

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1 hour ago, Seeking6 said:

IIRC we were ranked top 5 just throttled highly ranked Michigan St team at home before Mr. Cook (may he rest in peace) sent a check over to Assembly Hall for $750k to finish it off.

Not saying banner....but that was a Final 4 team.

Yes.  The total buyout was $750k. Of which $250k came from IU.  All these years, all I knew was the rest ($500k) came from an unknown donor.  Till now, I was unaware that the unknown donor was Mr. Cook.  Thanks for that.  And it does not surprise me.

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I appreciate that Lance is entitled to an opinion as a former player.  However, he's brushing under the rug the fact that the team was a low character team.  It may hurt to realize that, but as a whole, that was not a group that IU would hold up with pride.  I don't mean everybody.  Obviously, Eric Gordon has been a quality guy and a few others are too.  But, as a whole, not IU material in terms of character.

As for Sampson, he knew the deal at IU and he went out of his way to make mistakes and bring down the program.  It's not like he did something inadvertent.   So what if he paid a price?  It's relatively small compared to the fact that IU basketball went into shambles.

I'd agree that Sampson as an on-the-floor coach may have done well, but that is moot and secondary.

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