The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Indiana basketball coach levels another program

By John Garces/sports editor

The once-proud basketball program of the Indiana Hoosiers has been tarnished thanks to the actions of its now former head coach Kelvin Sampson.

Sampson, who was hired to restore the winning tradition of Hoosier basketball, was forced to resign Feb. 22 in the wake of several alleged NCAA sanctions.

The allegations stem from the improper use of a cell phone to call recruits.

Sampson is alleged to have gone well over the allotted number of calls that the NCAA allows coaches to make to recruits.

The most damaging allegation of all claims, Sampson lied to NCAA investigators when asked if he knowingly lied to NCAA investigators about his illegal conduct.

Sampson was hired despite a shady track record that saw him under internal investigation at Oklahoma for the same thing.

When he resigned abruptly to take the Indiana job, he left the Sooners behind to take the NCAA punishment for his crimes.

But Sampson’s numerous indiscretions appear to be just the tip of the iceberg as far as Indiana’s troubles go.

Despite widespread support for the decision by the fans and boosters of the school and college basketball fans nationwide, there were, and perhaps still are, some Indiana basketball players who see things differently.

Six IU players failed to show for practice under interim head coach Dan Dakich, presumably because they didn’t want to see Sampson fired, and Dakich wasn’t the player’s choice for the new coach.

It appeared that those players had come to their senses by Feb. 23 as all of them made the trip for the team’s first post-Sampson game. But several had Sampson’s initials written on their shoes as a tribute of sorts.

This situation is troublesome because the NCAA and all its member universities apparently have let their sports programs run amok to the point that “win at all cost” seems to have replaced the usual mantra of “fair play.”

Indiana is a good example.

Sampson was hired to replace Mike Davis, who, as the guy who replaced the legendary Bob Knight, was never liked at the school and was told he didn’t win enough despite leading the team to a Final Four appearance during his tenure.

Davis was a nice guy accused of not winning enough and was replaced by a guy with a better winning percentag, but a history of problems with the NCAA.

It’s time for the world of college athletics to take a look in the mirror; otherwise, guys like Sampson will continue taking jobs away from guys who deserve to have them.

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