While the Illini basketball coaching staff was busy visiting and hosting recruits last week and this weekend, Tennessee head coach Bruce Pearl was admitting that he recently lied to the NCAA during an investigation of his program’s recruiting efforts, news that hardly surprised Illinois fans.
Pearl may be a media darling nationally, but around Champaign-Urbana, he’s known as the former Iowa assistant who claimed recruiting shenanigans by the Illini in the late eighties and early nineties, resulting in a year-long probation for the basketball program despite his claims never being proven.
In a phone interview with USA Today, former Illini assistant Jimmy Collins certainly didn’t hold back his feelings about Pearl, as examined in more detail during this week’s Illinois basketball wrap.
CURRENT ILLINI PLAYER NEWS
#1 D.J. Richardson
Writing Illini just finished its summer basketball series on the sophomore Richardson, who registered at #14 on Draft Express’ recent feature on the top NBA prospects in the Big Ten.
#3 Brandon Paul
Illini assistant head coach Jerrance Howard is expecting big things from sophomore Brandon Paul, who will be the next Illinois player featured in the summer basketball school series.
#22 Jereme Richmond
When discussing his own freshman Cameron Clark, Oklahoma head coach Jeff Capel referenced Illini freshman Jereme Richmond, who played for Capel this summer as part of the FIBA Americas U18 team.
#32 Demetri McCamey
In the last three seasons, Illinois head coach Bruce Weber has rarely praised erratic point guard Demetri McCamey, whom Weber says could be one of the top 20 players in college basketball this season.
→ WEBER PLEASED WITH FIRST LOOK AT ILLINI (SUBSCRIPTION REQUIRED)
#54 Mike Tisdale
Relive senior center Mike Tisdale’s summer playing ball against Team USA.
→ MIKE TISDALE’S NEW YORK ADVENTURE (SUBSCRIPTION REQUIRED)
ILLINI BASKETBALL SCHEDULING NEWS
Tickets for December’s Illinois-Gonzaga game in Seattle went on sale yesterday.
ILLINI BASKETBALL COACHING/RECRUITING NEWS
I might as well combine these two categories this week, as Weber and his coaching staff have been working hard on the recruiting trail, with several prospects visiting campus throughout this weekend.
→ ROUNDUP OF BRUCE WEBER’S TRAVELS (MUST READ)
→ ZAK IRVIN HAS STRONG SUPPORT SYSTEM (SUBSCRIPTION REQUIRED)
When he wasn’t contacting recruits, Weber was helping the United Way.
COLLEGE BASKETBALL NEWS
Well, well, well. Bruce Pearl is a liar. Who would have guessed it?
→ BEFORE YOU RIP BRUCE PEARL (SOME PEOPLE CAN JUSTIFY ANYTHING)
Former Illini assistant coach and recently retired UIC head coach Jimmy Collins certainly doesn’t feel bad for Pearl, considering the history between the two men.
Of course, the cheats will keep cheating and get away with it, while a good man like Bruce Weber is easy fodder for a John Calpari-apologist like Gregg Doyel.
Here’s some more information on how the new 68-team NCAA Tournament will work out.
As the NFL kicks off and college football gets into full swing, is it too early for somebody in the media to talk about Duke and North Carolina basketball? Of course not.
Coming later this week, Writing Illini will begin to break down Brandon Paul’s game heading into the 2010-2011 season.
Topics: Bill Cole, Brandon Paul, Bruce Pearl, Bruce Weber, Chasson Randle, Crandall Head, D.J. Richardson, Demetri McCamey, Illini Basketball, Illinois Basketball, Jereme Richmond, Jerrance Howard, Jimmy Collins, Joseph Bertrand, Mike Davis, Mike Tisdale, Tyler Griffey, U-of-I Basketball, University Of Illinois