Surprise, surprise: Sampson ducks questions about major violations

  • 02/13/2008 10:37 pm in

iamkelvin.jpgJust as he did four months ago when IU’s self-reported violations came to light, Kelvin Sampson dodged questions about his latest violations this evening in the post-game press conference. Doug Wilson of the Hoosier Scoop has the details:

Sampson has read a short statement saying he’s aware of the NCAA statement of allegations and will make no further comment after tonight about them until after the NCAA’s process is complete.

Sampson said he never intentionally misled the NCAA investigators and he looks forward to working through the NCAA process.

He then refused to answer several questions about the allegation, saying he’ll only answer questions about tonight’s game.

Here’s one related question he did answer. He was asked what he thought about the reaction of fans tonight and said he didn’t notice it.

First thing is first: I love — well actually, love isn’t the right word, more like “am mildly annoyed” — that Sampson NEVER NOTICES THE CROWD. He’s never noticed the crowd at Illinois. And apparently, he’s never noticed the crowd at home either. (Except for at Midnight Madness when they chant “Kel-vin Samp-son;” he notices the crowd then. I believe this is called selective hearing.)

Second thing is second: I recommend you read E’s post I linked up top from October because it lays out why Sampson is obligated to answer this questions far better than I can. A small sampling: “Sorry Kelvin, but your responsibility is to run a program whose fans, whether rightfully or wrongfully, have very high-minded moral standards for their competitive athletes, and your responsibility is to run a program that complies with standard and enforced NCAA sanctions. When you fail to do that, your new responsibilities include being open and candid with the public whose trust you essentially betrayed — you are publicly paid, after all — about your massive screw up.”

Third thing is third and a bit off-topic for this post: A lot of people called for Sampson to be fired ASAP today in Big A’s post. I am not one of these people. I do think he will get fired; I think he should be fired. But not until after the season. The NCAA has yet to rule on this, so I think it would be rather reactionary if we cut Sampson loose tomorrow. But waiting till June when the NCAA does rule is too long — it puts us a bit behind for next year and a coaching search. So, IU should drop him just after this season ends. I think if IU lets him go now, that punishes the players and they have nothing to do with this. (And, as a selfish fan, I want this team to ride out the season with the same coach — it gives us the best chance to succeed from here on out. Tonight’s loss was rough, but given the right circumstances, we have a chance to do well in the tournament.) And lastly, I want D. J. White to finish out his senior season they way it was supposed to be carried out. He deserves nothing less.

Filed to:

  • Buddy

    If you have the 5 million dollars it will cost to drop him prior to the June hearings, please contact Rick Greenspan ASAP. Otherwise, let them go through due process.

    Sampson is like a criminal defendant here. No criminal defense worth the polish that shines their wingtips ever lets a defendant talk to the media. You lose control of the message and increase the chances of completely screwing up. Sampson is fighting for his job and the best way to do that is to “no comment.”

  • Mike W.

    I think it's only fair to compare Sampson to a lame-duck President. Most likely this will be Sampson's final season based on public opinion. I think it's only natural to start thinking possible replacements. Jay Wright, Tom Crean, Anthony Grant, Bruce Pearl, Rick Barnes, Brad Stevens, John Calipari, Ray McCullum and NBA coaches Larry Brown, Mike Montgomery and Randy Wittman are probably on IU's short list.

  • Jake

    pure speculation??? Not sure but this blog is correct more often than not… http://thebiglead.com/?p=4613#more-4613

  • I understand why Sampson isn't talking. Controlling the message is part of PR 101. But that doesn't mean I agree with it.

    At some point, I just want Sampson to own up to his shortcomings.Or at least say something more than a statement. I hope that day comes sometime soon — perhaps after the NCAA rules.

  • ricky

    almost all of the coaches you have on that list you gave would likely want to come to iu. they either have great jobs or don't want to coach in college. why not sean miller from xavier? he has shown the ability to win at xavier, not exactly a top flight school but still one with tradition. it would obviously be a step up to coach at indiana. he is a good coach and a good recruiter and is definitely going to get a better job than the one he has now in the near future. jay wright, tom crean, bruce pearl, rick barnes and ESPECIALLY john calipari (are you insane???) all have great jobs that they won't leave anytime soon, not even for indiana.

    for now though, sampson does give this team its best chance to succeed, but they need to start winning now before we have to start worrying about even making the tournament. yea, it might come to that. usually a team whose best win is at ohio state doesn't make the tourny

  • Buddy

    Don't forget about Tony Bennett and Chris Lowery.

  • Buddy

    If IU wants to fire Sampson “for just cause” they have to wait until the NCAA rules.

  • Mike W.

    I respectfully disagree. I still believe that IU is one of the premiere jobs in the nation and most of these coaches know that. It may not be the sexiest job after the current scandals but IU remains a top school for college basketball.

  • Tom

    as much as i want to agree with you, i can't. the luster is gone. i realized that when we hired sampson. surely they approached other (better) coaches and were turned down. the iu prestige is not what it once was.

  • Sherron Wilkerson

    I think Buddy should take over writing duties on this site, it used to be a good site but it has begun to suck big time. All the negativity is not real fun to read.

  • Hoosier_Hound

    IU is definitely one of the premier jobs. Indiana develops more basketball talent per capita than any other state, plus you're right next to Chicago which is just loaded with talent. Then add in stuff like the fan support (read: financial support), the new Basketball Development Center, the fact the school is probably going to replace AH in around a decade, and media attention IU receives (although right now that's not a good thing). IU basketball is clearly a premier program, and a place almost any coach would want to be at.

  • steve

    You are nuts. Maybe twenty years ago but not anymore. We have not won anything in a long time or even been to the final four other then one year in the past 15.
    Please tell me what you know recker222000@yahoo.com

  • 2000: knight fired
    2001-02: miracle run to championship game
    2003-04: worst season ever
    2004-05: NIT
    early 2006: davis fired
    late 2006: eric gordon recruiting saga
    2007: new violations for sampson
    yesterday: NCAA responds
    april 2008: sampson fired

    this has been the most ridiculous decade in IU basketball history.

  • Sherron,

    It's not negativity. At this point, it's reality, my friend.

  • read sampson's contract.

    IU can fire KS if there is “a signifcant, intentional, repetitve violation of any NCAA law, rule or regulation.” That is in writing in the contract. They will not be on the hook for any of the $5 mil you talk about. In fact, if they do fire him, they'll only owe him his salary through the rest of that month.

    Sampson is like a criminal defendant who has already robbed a convience store and robbed another one. i think it's ridiculous for any of us to presume he's innocent and frankly, he hasn't earned the benefit of the doubt from IU fans.

  • Timmy

    This is complete bullshit. We are in the middle of the three biggest games of the year and you guys are focusing on this crap. Why can't you make this site an oasis to talk about the actual basketball instead of the fire sampson rhetoric? We get it, you want Sampson gone but how many different ways can you say the same thing without it becoming white noise?

  • JamesHardy

    Isn't it IRONIC that a guy who's charged with TALKING too much on cell phones and 3-way calls would clam up when asked to speak? What a punk b!tch!

    If the reports are true…i.e. Sampson will be fired on Friday…does that mean that all the other coaches who are named in the allegations will be replaced as well? As an educator that sees athletes get all the free passes in the world, I have to say that this is one time I would like to see an institution of higher learning put integrity, morality, and COMMON freakin SENSE above all other aspects. Yes, I'm a life-long Hoosier and I'm aware of the “basketball is life” mentality. My 5 year old son is already well on his way to getting a history lesson of IU athletics, Notre Dame athletics, Purdue athletics (mostly b/c a former Purdue alum is a big part of our church and school). But the last thing I want to explain to my 5 year old is that “winning at all costs” is the philosophy of my alma mater. I'm not sold on the fact that we need a “high profile” coach. Look at what happened when we went high profile this time. Let's hire a coach based on his morals and integrity as opposed to his win-loss record. The top 2 I can think of right off the top of my head are 1. Mark Few and 2. Scott Drew. I'm sick of watching talented teams in Bloomington go to waste because our coach (or should I say last two coaches) have a horrendous philosphy for college basketball. They both belong on NBA staffs based on their 1 on 1 philosophy.

  • JamesHardy

    good call…the problem is…I put that loss on KS last night. Every time we've lost this year its been a result of KS getting out coached. So we have a cheater who's not that good of a Xs and Os coach. It's a shame that DJ was forgotten about in the 2nd half last night…cuz the Badgers had NO answer for him defensively. I'm not going to blame the officials for 1 missed travel call…I honestly think that was the most consistently officiated games I've seen this year in the Big 10. On a positive note, it was nice to see EJ look good in the 2nd half last night. It's a shame his game isn't mroe balanced to where he could put up 10-12 points in each half instead of 3 in one half and 20 in the next or 1 and 17 like the Illinois game. By going DJ in the 1st and EJ in the 2nd, Kelvin is becoming predictable and it makes the job of the opposing coach that much easier to stop our offense.

  • “how many different ways can you say the same thing without it becoming white noise?”

    how many times sampson can lie and cheat without being fired?

  • Timmy

    Didn't you learn anything from O'Brien and Ohio State? Give Coach his day in court, he's returned IU basketball to relevence so I think he's earned the chance to defend himself with the NCAA.

  • Timmy

    I didn't see the game which is another reason it sucks that instead of the usual morning after post we get the crap about Coach. Was DJ forgotten about in the 2nd half or did UW do something to adjust which would make EJ take over?

  • he's returned us to relevance?

    more like he's made our program look like trash and disgraced the Indiana basketball tradition. sampson hasn't “earned” anything. he cheated at oklahoma and he cheated AND lied here. he should be fired immediately.

    pull your head out of your ass.

  • No! No, no, no, no Rick Barnes.

    That would be a huge step back. Maybe he runs a clean program, but he's a consistent underachiever. Do you really want IU bowing out in the first round of the NCAA tournament every year?

    What about Scott Drew? He cleaned up the Baylor mess very well, which was in a whole lot more dire situation than Indiana's current troubles.

  • td

    For the sake of changing the subject, I have to smile when the NCAA uses the term student/athlete as if they really cared. If they really cared about kids sucessfully going to college, they would revisit the freshman eligibility rule. I like the idea of making the kids go to school for a year before declaring for the NBA, however it would make it a lot more interesting if colleges couldn't play them during that one year period. The schools would then have to weigh recruiting kids who might never wear that school's uniform. And, colleges would not become simply a parking space for one year. It's something the NBA certainly doesn't want as getting the colleges to look after these kids at no cost to the NBA is a sweet deal. Anyone notice the NBA didn't argue very loud when they started making the kids go to school for a year. This would change the recruiting landscape and return college basketball to what it should be, a true student/athlete experience. Let the one and dones play in the development league at the NBA's expense or go to junior college if they wish to forgo the 4-yr. college experience. Shame on the colleges and the NCAA taking advantage of the one and dones and the dollars they help bring in to both during their one-year “LEASE.” Not all kids get an opportunity to experience the college life. It shouldn't be any different for basketball players, especially ones who have no interest in the student side of things. Recruiting would be a different kind of difficult, however the need to cheat in keeping fans and alumni happy would diminish.
    None of this will ever happen as long as dollars are more important than the “student/athlete” which is forever in the eyes of you know who.

  • Tom

    be easy on timmy, his diploma really took a hit this week.

  • HoosierSmitty

    I agree that it sucks we're talking about this, but blame the NCAA. They conveniently released this stuff to IU during our biggest stretch of the season. The NCAA should be held to a high standard and have a required time to respond when a university sends them information. Dropping a bomb like this on the Hoosiers at this time reeks of “agenda.”

    It doesn't change the fact that our coach should have quite frankly “known better.”

    About the game….DJ got that horrible third foul call and disappeared. He missed his next three shots and never found rhythm again, almost like he was afraid that they'd call a phantom charge on him for backing down his defender. We turned to EJ, who wasn't hitting from distance, but was penetrating, and making solid plays. That was what I noticed and I was in the stands.

  • Do you really expect us to pretend this isn't happening? We talk plenty about the actual games, but when the head coach continuously embarrasses the university, we're left with no choice but to call it like it is.

  • ALH_00

    why? he already admitted to the impremissilbe phone calls. That's failure to abide by NCAA rules. He can be fired immediately. Surely Sampson will fight to get his money, but what's one lawsuit compared to the integrity of the program…hasn't it been through enough? cut the cord.

  • Hoosiers07

    Normally the quality of conversation on here is pretty high, and I'd hate to bring it down by insulting you. Suffice it to say that you've got your head in the effing sand.

  • Hoosiers07

    Why blame it on the people covering what's happening? To ignore this story would be idiotic. Maybe they're focusing on this story because it's big news that'll affect the program that many of you clearly cheerlead for.

  • Buddy

    I did read the contract. And I know what it means.

    IU has to give him due process and the chance to defend himself before they can fire him for cause. His significant, intentional or repetitive violation has to be proven with Sampson given a full chance to respond in an appropriate venue (such as an NCAA hearing). That is why Jim O'Brien won his lawsuit against tOSU. They fired him for cause without giving him full due process and he ended up getting paid out as if they fired him without cause. Greenspan is handling this right if his intent is to fire Sampson for cause.

  • 2000: knight fired
    2001-02: miracle run to championship game
    2003-04: worst season ever
    2004-05: NIT
    early 2006: davis fired
    late 2006: eric gordon recruiting saga
    2007: new violations for sampson
    yesterday: NCAA responds
    april 2008: sampson fired

    this has been the most ridiculous decade in IU basketball history.

  • Sherron,

    It's not negativity. At this point, it's reality, my friend.

  • read sampson's contract.

    IU can fire KS if there is “a signifcant, intentional, repetitve violation of any NCAA law, rule or regulation.” That is in writing in the contract. They will not be on the hook for any of the $5 mil you talk about. In fact, if they do fire him, they'll only owe him his salary through the rest of that month.

    Sampson is like a criminal defendant who has already robbed a convience store and robbed another one. i think it's ridiculous for any of us to presume he's innocent and frankly, he hasn't earned the benefit of the doubt from IU fans.

  • Timmy

    This is complete bullshit. We are in the middle of the three biggest games of the year and you guys are focusing on this crap. Why can't you make this site an oasis to talk about the actual basketball instead of the fire sampson rhetoric? We get it, you want Sampson gone but how many different ways can you say the same thing without it becoming white noise?

  • JamesHardy

    Isn't it IRONIC that a guy who's charged with TALKING too much on cell phones and 3-way calls would clam up when asked to speak? What a punk b!tch!

    If the reports are true…i.e. Sampson will be fired on Friday…does that mean that all the other coaches who are named in the allegations will be replaced as well? As an educator that sees athletes get all the free passes in the world, I have to say that this is one time I would like to see an institution of higher learning put integrity, morality, and COMMON freakin SENSE above all other aspects. Yes, I'm a life-long Hoosier and I'm aware of the “basketball is life” mentality. My 5 year old son is already well on his way to getting a history lesson of IU athletics, Notre Dame athletics, Purdue athletics (mostly b/c a former Purdue alum is a big part of our church and school). But the last thing I want to explain to my 5 year old is that “winning at all costs” is the philosophy of my alma mater. I'm not sold on the fact that we need a “high profile” coach. Look at what happened when we went high profile this time. Let's hire a coach based on his morals and integrity as opposed to his win-loss record. The top 2 I can think of right off the top of my head are 1. Mark Few and 2. Scott Drew. I'm sick of watching talented teams in Bloomington go to waste because our coach (or should I say last two coaches) have a horrendous philosphy for college basketball. They both belong on NBA staffs based on their 1 on 1 philosophy.

  • JamesHardy

    good call…the problem is…I put that loss on KS last night. Every time we've lost this year its been a result of KS getting out coached. So we have a cheater who's not that good of a Xs and Os coach. It's a shame that DJ was forgotten about in the 2nd half last night…cuz the Badgers had NO answer for him defensively. I'm not going to blame the officials for 1 missed travel call…I honestly think that was the most consistently officiated games I've seen this year in the Big 10. On a positive note, it was nice to see EJ look good in the 2nd half last night. It's a shame his game isn't mroe balanced to where he could put up 10-12 points in each half instead of 3 in one half and 20 in the next or 1 and 17 like the Illinois game. By going DJ in the 1st and EJ in the 2nd, Kelvin is becoming predictable and it makes the job of the opposing coach that much easier to stop our offense.

  • “how many different ways can you say the same thing without it becoming white noise?”

    how many times sampson can lie and cheat without being fired?

  • Timmy

    Didn't you learn anything from O'Brien and Ohio State? Give Coach his day in court, he's returned IU basketball to relevence so I think he's earned the chance to defend himself with the NCAA.

  • Timmy

    I didn't see the game which is another reason it sucks that instead of the usual morning after post we get the crap about Coach. Was DJ forgotten about in the 2nd half or did UW do something to adjust which would make EJ take over?

  • he's returned us to relevance?

    more like he's made our program look like trash and disgraced the Indiana basketball tradition. sampson hasn't “earned” anything. he cheated at oklahoma and he cheated AND lied here. he should be fired immediately.

    pull your head out of your ass.

  • No! No, no, no, no Rick Barnes.

    That would be a huge step back. Maybe he runs a clean program, but he's a consistent underachiever. Do you really want IU bowing out in the first round of the NCAA tournament every year?

    What about Scott Drew? He cleaned up the Baylor mess very well, which was in a whole lot more dire situation than Indiana's current troubles.

  • td

    For the sake of changing the subject, I have to smile when the NCAA uses the term student/athlete as if they really cared. If they really cared about kids sucessfully going to college, they would revisit the freshman eligibility rule. I like the idea of making the kids go to school for a year before declaring for the NBA, however it would make it a lot more interesting if colleges couldn't play them during that one year period. The schools would then have to weigh recruiting kids who might never wear that school's uniform. And, colleges would not become simply a parking space for one year. It's something the NBA certainly doesn't want as getting the colleges to look after these kids at no cost to the NBA is a sweet deal. Anyone notice the NBA didn't argue very loud when they started making the kids go to school for a year. This would change the recruiting landscape and return college basketball to what it should be, a true student/athlete experience. Let the one and dones play in the development league at the NBA's expense or go to junior college if they wish to forgo the 4-yr. college experience. Shame on the colleges and the NCAA taking advantage of the one and dones and the dollars they help bring in to both during their one-year “LEASE.” Not all kids get an opportunity to experience the college life. It shouldn't be any different for basketball players, especially ones who have no interest in the student side of things. Recruiting would be a different kind of difficult, however the need to cheat in keeping fans and alumni happy would diminish.
    None of this will ever happen as long as dollars are more important than the “student/athlete” which is forever in the eyes of you know who.

  • Tom

    be easy on timmy, his diploma really took a hit this week.

  • HoosierSmitty

    I agree that it sucks we're talking about this, but blame the NCAA. They conveniently released this stuff to IU during our biggest stretch of the season. The NCAA should be held to a high standard and have a required time to respond when a university sends them information. Dropping a bomb like this on the Hoosiers at this time reeks of “agenda.”

    It doesn't change the fact that our coach should have quite frankly “known better.”

    About the game….DJ got that horrible third foul call and disappeared. He missed his next three shots and never found rhythm again, almost like he was afraid that they'd call a phantom charge on him for backing down his defender. We turned to EJ, who wasn't hitting from distance, but was penetrating, and making solid plays. That was what I noticed and I was in the stands.

  • Do you really expect us to pretend this isn't happening? We talk plenty about the actual games, but when the head coach continuously embarrasses the university, we're left with no choice but to call it like it is.

  • ALH_00

    why? he already admitted to the impremissilbe phone calls. That's failure to abide by NCAA rules. He can be fired immediately. Surely Sampson will fight to get his money, but what's one lawsuit compared to the integrity of the program…hasn't it been through enough? cut the cord.

  • Hoosiers07

    Normally the quality of conversation on here is pretty high, and I'd hate to bring it down by insulting you. Suffice it to say that you've got your head in the effing sand.

  • Hoosiers07

    Why blame it on the people covering what's happening? To ignore this story would be idiotic. Maybe they're focusing on this story because it's big news that'll affect the program that many of you clearly cheerlead for.

  • Buddy

    I did read the contract. And I know what it means.

    IU has to give him due process and the chance to defend himself before they can fire him for cause. His significant, intentional or repetitive violation has to be proven with Sampson given a full chance to respond in an appropriate venue (such as an NCAA hearing). That is why Jim O'Brien won his lawsuit against tOSU. They fired him for cause without giving him full due process and he ended up getting paid out as if they fired him without cause. Greenspan is handling this right if his intent is to fire Sampson for cause.