All of the Hoosiers back on board

52 comments by   |   Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 9:56 am EDT

Indiana players board their plane, bound for Evanston.

DeAndre Thomas says that IU is No. 1.

As Indiana’s team bus prepares to leave Assembly Hall on its way to the Bloomington airport at 10 a.m. Saturday, all of the Hoosier players are there to make the trip for tonight’s game at Northwestern.

So IU will have a full squad for Dan Dakich’s first game as head coach.

We’re driving to Evanston and will be leaving shortly. Please join us tonight for live analysis of the game and discussion of where this team is headed after the turmoil of losing coach Kelvin Sampson.

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52 comments:
#1
Jeff
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 10:05 AM EDT

Awesome. Now let’s go up there and give Danny his first win!

 
#2
Greg
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 10:05 AM EDT

You guys have been absolutely amazing through all of this. Kudos to the H-T sportswriters (and all the rest such as James Boyd). You all have stayed on track seeking the truth like true journalists — unlike the sensationalist, shameless national media (all except the Indiana AP writer in that implication). You all deserve a Pulitzer or at least some comp time off!

 
#3
Hoosiers 2008
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 10:09 AM EDT

Thank you Damon Bailey for convincing the players
to stay on board.

 
#4
Mark K
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 10:11 AM EDT

Greg, I agree that the HT- sportswriters have done a magnificent job with this terrible situation IU and fans have found themselves in.

That popular IU b-ball site which sahll remain nameless was full of ranting, raving fans and lots of worthless posts and was of little value as compared to coming here and getting the updates and accurate updates.

Again, awesome job guys and thanks for your great work and get to Evanston safe and sound to report back to us on our 1st victory under Coach Dakich!

Go IU!

 
#5
Mark K
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 10:15 AM EDT

Hoosiers2008, why did you get that info about Damon helping convince the players? I for one think it was Sampson that played the biggest part in stressing to players to continue playing and not do the selfish boycotting. While I admire their loyalty to Coach Sampson and understand them wanting to use some leverage on Greenspan, it would have been a terrible decision by those players that would have actually gone through with it.

Time to rally around the team and give our support to the team and IU!

 
#6
Hoosiers 2008
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 10:21 AM EDT

It was stated last night that Damon was asked to come to Assembly Hall and speak to the players at the request of Dakich. I am not saying that it was Damon that “saved the day”, but I do think it was a very nice gesture for him to take time to come to Assembly Hall and speak to the players. It shows that he cares and was willing to help with the “boycott” situation…………..

 
#7
Jackie T
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 10:21 AM EDT

Indiana, OUR Indiana, Indiana, we’re ALL for you. Love the team-you guys are awesome.

Thanks HT. You are the only way some of us could keep an eye on the sistuation.

 
#8
kt
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 10:24 AM EDT

Damon was a great player, but has had no ties to this team. Not sure if his “support,” would mean that much to the players. I bet it was Ray who got them back on board.

 
#9
Lakeland Jim
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 10:25 AM EDT

This is good news that emotions aren’t driving a regrettable decison on their part. These guys have worked very hared and deserve the opportunity to win a Big Ten title and more.

On another matter. I hope that the AD does the right thing and steps down and is not part of the next coaching decision. He said in the press conference last night that he is responsible for all athletic matters. The buck needs to stop squarely on his doorstep for the poor judgement of making the Sampson recommendation in the first place,.

 
#10
LafayetteHoosier
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 10:31 AM EDT

I can only imagine that McCallum stayed on out of loyalty to the players and quite possibility at the request of Sampson to keep the players from making a terrible mistake.

Although I was prepared to watch EJ drop 50+ on Northwestern while playing alongside Taber, M. White, Finklemeier, Ahlfeld, and Stemler.

 
#11
Jason
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 10:56 AM EDT

Does anyone else feel that the players that skipped Dan’s first practice should not be allowed to play tonight? I understand the players venting their frustrations with the situation, but I think Dan should show everyone that he’s in charge now. If anyone skipped one of Sampson’s practices, you know they wouldn’t play for at least one game, if not two.

Also, anyone think it was Benson that sent the anonymous $550,000 to help the university with their payment to Sampson?

 
#12
LafayetteHoosier
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 11:02 AM EDT

Jason,

I considered that too, but these are kids and they were just emotional. You can’t fault them for making a statement and standing by the man who brought them there. Had they not shown up for the bus, I would have booted them off the team immediately. But now that they’re on the way to Evanston, let’s support the team and move on.

 
#13
Richard Storm
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 11:15 AM EDT

I believe that the players wanted to make a statement that they did not approve of the way that Coach Sampson was being treated by the press, elements of the fan base and the significant rush to remove a coach that they highly valued.

In their mind this process could have been just as easily adjudicated in the April-May timeframe as the NCAA requested. But also in their mind uncontrolled forces (media frenzy {not Hearld-Times} contributing to mob mentality within elements of the fan base) caused the process to speed up and adversely impact their season.

They also were advised and knew that it was in their best long term interest not to quit or boycott the team. Especially since they have been frequently labeled as making emotionally immature responses to the Coach Sampson situation because they’re 18-22. They also probably remember how other IU players were adversely treated by the fan base when they left the basketball team.

Coach Sampson and Ray McCallum were probably their most significant advisors encouraging them to pursue excellence as a way of experiencing healing through this ordeal.

Because of the gracious way that Kelvin Sampson handled his departure from IU:
1. Continuing to successfully coach the team to victories through this emotional process and politely interacting with the press after games even though most wanted to grill him in the court of public opinion.
2. Accepting a lessor amount of resignation pay than many attorney’s in the dialogue thought that he would receive.
3. Agreeing not to sue IU regardless of the outcome of the NCAA investigation.
4. And encouraging the players to pursue excellence and to continue with the team. I believe that he will continue to be this voice of encouragement for them throughout the rest of the season.

Because of these factors I am again optimistic about this IU teams chance for success this season.

As the song goes “For the Glory of IU”. I am now less concerned about IU entering a period of “ICHABOD” brought on by this situation and our response to this situation.

 
#14 Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 11:17 AM EDT

Long live the Hoosier tradition. Best of luck to our boys left holding the bag. D.J. Eric Armon Lance and the rest of you deserve to win out. Go Big Red!

 
#15
dcdave
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 11:19 AM EDT

Jason,
The answer to your question is NO!!!!!!!!!

 
#16
IU fan
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 11:32 AM EDT

Jason,
I doubt that Benson has that kind of money to give away.
My guess? Mark Cuban.

 
#17
fan
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 11:32 AM EDT

Let’s look forward and stop looking backwards. Sampson is gone, Dakich is temporarily in charge and all the players are ready to make the final push towards both the big ten and big dance.

Thank goodness this all happened on a Friday…as I woke this morning, i took deep breath and just want to forget about yesterday.

Who cares who paid the $550,000 other than if they have that much money to waste, give it to the school for some academic scholarships…

 
#18
Optional practice
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 11:33 AM EDT

What if the players were told it was an optional practice? Also, wasn’t it reported that all the players were present for last night’s walk-through?

 
#19
fan
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 11:34 AM EDT

you are correct…the reports stated all were present and under the circumstances of what happened yesterday…let’s just leave the players out of this mess…they are ALL on the bus!

 
#20
Ryan K
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 11:40 AM EDT

Jason, I think the only person you have on your side is Digger Phelps. We all need to put things into perspective. Everyone, myself included, needs to get past thinking we know what is right for this team and that includes those that fault the players for making their voices heard. Not letting them play is ignorant! This is their team, not ours. I can almost assure you that they realized the risk of making such a powerful statement in support of Sampson. Those of us on the outside will never understand the pressures or emotions of these players over the past 10 days. I think it is time for everyone to move on and show support. Crying and moaning because you feel these players somehow slapped you in the face because you’ve been an IU fan for 40 years is plain stupid. These players are IU basketball 24/7. Sure, they play in part because of the financial support many of us provide. But its their hard work and devotion that make them what they are. I for one would not be disappointed in the least if we could all just let go of whatever self emotions we have built up.

 
#21
Dave
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 11:41 AM EDT

DOubt it was Cuban as he said that he would never donate a dollar to IU athletics as he doesn’t agree with the NCAA.

Here’s a shot in the dark: Maybe the donor was Bill Cook?

 
#22
Mark K
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 11:44 AM EDT

Jason,

I think all players should play tonight no matter what transpired or was said yesterday. Time to move forward towards a Big Ten Championship.

I think it was Bill Cook or Mark Cuban who donated the $550K.

 
#23
TrueIU
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 11:45 AM EDT

I’m glad to see the team pull together. Yesterday had to be difficukt on those young men. Lets rally behind these kids and Dan.

Final Four Bound Baby!!!!!!

 
#24
John
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 11:46 AM EDT

I think you have to give the players a pass on this one in regards to the one game suspection comment. Normally, I’d understand where you’re coming from but they’ve been put in a pretty stressful situation not by their doing and it’s been trumped up more by the media into the massive distraction it’s become. I don’t blame them for missing practice and decompressing especially since they only learned of the verdict a hour or two before. I think their character as players will be shown in how they handle this going forward. By all accounts, D.J. White is a pretty stand up guy, I expect him rally his team around his adversity.

 
#25
John
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 11:48 AM EDT

Few typos and run on sentences there after re-reading, hehe. His adversity = their adversity.

 
#26
Jason
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 11:50 AM EDT

Believe me, I think we need to move forward. It was just a thought I had. The fact they all showed up for last night’s walkthru is a good sign. I hadn’t heard about that practice yet, only the afternoon. I’m glad all the players are on the bus. Maybe it was just emotions and that’s why they didn’t show up. I’m thinking these kids are going to play with a chip on their shoulder the rest of year and with more emotion and heart than we’ve seen all year.

Now, let’s got get us a Big Ten Championship, a Final Four, and a National Championship!

IU!

 
#27
ann
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 12:11 PM EDT

JASON – NO to Benson, but how about MARK CUBAN
remember he offered to by out Mike Davis’s contract. Maybe we’ll see Kelvin on the Maverick sidelines……….LOL

 
#28
Valley Forge
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 12:27 PM EDT

Question: Have we put our IU pride ahead of a commitment to personal integrity by being so ungracious toward the young men who had the courage to stand up for what they believed in. It is rather disingenuous for radio talk show host and IU alumni to berate those young men by accusing them of being selfish because they chose to communicate their frustration through a peaceful boycott of the Northwestern game. Are our egos that enmeshed with the success and failure of the basketball program that we cannot step back for a second to see beyond the win lose column and empathize with these youngsters? What would truly be the harm of forfeiting a game to give the kids and alumni a chance to process this mess? Is a Big Ten title or a deep run into the NCAA tournament more important than applauding their commitment to stand by what they believe is right? If we are committed to excellence and integrity why are we not willing to pause and reassess the situation? Is our commitment to integrity just lip service? All we have succeeded at communicating to the NCAA is that when we have been caught (whether or not it was self reported or not, we were obligated to bring it to their attention, regardless) and they threaten to discipline us harshly for non-compliance, we will take action. Forcing coach Sampson to resign did no more to communicate to the NCAA that we were committed to integrity than our forced removal of Bob Knight did. It makes me sick to my stomach to see such a great tradition be dragged through a cesspool of political posturing. I don’t think playing the victim card is going to get IU (us) off the hook. However, what is done is done. As much as we would like to wipe the slate clean we can’t. Sometimes you have to go through Valley Forge to get to Yorktown. This is IU’s Valley Forge. May it be said of us that when all is said and done that integrity is what guided us and not pandering to fickle public opinion. Otherwise, coach Sampson’s removal only amounts to a cheap salve to soothe a blistered conscience.

 
#29
Dodger
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 1:15 PM EDT

Valley Forge…..this is only basketball!!!

 
#30
MD in GA
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 1:18 PM EDT

I couldn’t care less about the details that I will never know in the first place…who got them to stay…who donated, etc. I do, however, feel better about what is IU Basketball than I have since the early-mid 90′s. We are actually on a wave of momentum…winning seasons…competing for the B10…bringing in excellent recruits…getting national attention (though the media makes it out to be negative to the enth degree, IU is actually purging itself of all the krud that has been clogging up the program since RMK started to slide). I see all of this as a coop we can parley into getting back to being the most admired and envied program in the country. 2 NCAA championships in the next 10 years. Just sit back and enjoy! p.s. I’m not Dan Dakich, btw. Just a true believing fan!

 
#31
Doug
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 1:28 PM EDT

Posted it elsewhere, but this should be no surprise, given IU’s decision to hire damaged goods. I can assure you that NO ONE in Norman, OK is surprised at this turn of events. It’s a shame for IU that it had to come to this, but again, it should be a surprise to no one. Hope the team puts it out of their mind and moves forward.

BTW — the university handled this miserably. Read the Pat Forde ESPN piece about it. Quoting in part:

**************
Years from now, someone should do a training video on how NOT to handle a situation like this. Among the pointers:

• Don’t give yourself a public deadline you have to struggle hysterically to meet.

• Don’t let out word that you’ll have a news conference at 2 p.m., and then at 4, and then at 6, if you can’t get it done before 9 p.m.

• Don’t spend a day the entire state has been waiting for in total silence. There wasn’t a blip of official communication from IU until after 8 p.m., when it finally announced its news conference. Reporters were left to loiter around athletic administration offices, waiting for anyone to say anything, with nobody from IU taking control of the situation…………

• Don’t hire a coach with a track record as a cheater.

• Don’t bury a letter charging major NCAA violations in hopes that nobody will find out about it. ESPN.com found out and started asking questions shortly after the letter arrived. The school stonewalled. It only made the allegations public after receiving a Freedom of Information request from ESPN.com, and it did not announce its renewed investigation until a week after it received the letter.

 
#32
Jackie T
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 1:33 PM EDT

Next coach? What’s your guess? Hope that we don’t do the easy thing and pick anyone on the staff just because they were left behind. That didn’t work before. Go after a fresh, clean coach without baggage. ESPN has a list that looks pretty interesting. Go Hoosiers. Everyone is watching tonight. I hope they have a great game! And I will be there next week in the hall to cheer them on just as loudly as before-if not louder!

 
#33
MD in GA
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 1:36 PM EDT

Doug, those are all excellent points, and I couldn’t agree with them more. The one positive caveat to all of those points made is that they are all a direct reflection of the AD (and the f’d up media…no offense guys). I don’t want another firestorm to start as a campaign to get rid of RG, but I do believe he is responsible for the lion’s share of this whole debacle. He will be released (I believe and hope), McRobbie will make a significant hire in RG’s place, the new AD will make an excellent hire for bball coach, and IU will proceed with my prior post.

 
#34
Ryan K
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 1:37 PM EDT

Probably reaching on my part, but I’d LOVE to see Rick Pitino on the sidelines of Assembly Hall.

 
#35
ann
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 1:45 PM EDT

we would like to be watching tonight but oops the game is on the BTN……… the Rick Pitino
has to get divorced to come to Bton that is according to Mrs. P.

 
#36
all-wear
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 2:40 PM EDT

BRING BACK BOBBY T-shirts at

all-wear.com

 
#37
DCBig10
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 2:48 PM EDT

I have been an IU fan for over 60 years..My Dad was an IU fan. My son and grandson in Oklahoma are IU fans.
So you know where I’m coming from !!
I loved Sampson as a coach, but it’s time to move on, let’s all support our team and coach Dakich for the remainder of the season.
And oh yeah…It’s time for the AD to move on !!

 
#38
Mark K
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 3:27 PM EDT

Seems it’s time for Martha The Cleaning Lady to sweep up after Sampson’s mess?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rWXyn8SpS9A

“Indiana, Our Indiana”

Indiana, our Indiana
Indiana, we’re all for you!
We will fight for the cream and crimson
For the glory of old IU
Never daunted, we cannot falter
In the battle, we’re tried and true
Indiana, our Indiana,
Indiana we’re all for you! I-U!

 
#39
Jim McLay
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 4:01 PM EDT

That bus to Evanston looks like an airplane to me.

 
#40
Ryan K
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 4:15 PM EDT

BOB HASN’T BEEN RELEVANT IN A DECADE t-shirts available:

getoveritalready.com

 
#41
Bob
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 4:27 PM EDT

What type of plane does IU fly the team in?

 
#42 Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 4:27 PM EDT

I think Greenspan has to go. He knew it was a big risk to hire Sampson and with what has transpired, part of the solution is also his removal. I think the NCAA penalty is going to be a two year ban from playing in the big dance. You don’t commit “major” violations, while on probation no less and get off with a slap on the wrist. Unfortunately i think we are headed for some dark times.

I don’t know who we will get to replace either but i would love to see one of our own back at the helm.

Lets hope the powers that be at IU make some good decisions in the next few months. Go Hoosiers.

 
#43
Jim Mac
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 4:32 PM EDT

The IU plane in the photo is a Saab 340A

 
#44
Bill Gregory
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 5:15 PM EDT

I live in Florida and can not make the trip tonight, but wouldn’t it be great for the team for a group to meet them at the airport on their arrival after the game!

 
#45
ww
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 5:37 PM EDT

I paid the $550K guys and if each of you could pony up a $100 to help me out on that I could provide you with an address. Benson? giggle giggle. That was a good one!

Good luck Coach Dakich and Coach Ray. Maybe get Kal on the phone with the guys before the game. Seriously!

 
#46
ww
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 5:44 PM EDT

Sorry………that would be Kel, instead of Kal.

 
#47
Bradley
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 5:55 PM EDT

IU still has some work to do to rescue the basketball program. Greenspan has proven he cannot be trusted with the athletic program. First, he hired Sampson, who managed to deliver the first major NCAA recruiting violations since 1960. Then, he completely mishandled the investigation, determining that 100 recruting phonecalls were only a “minor” violation of the NCAA rules. I hope the IU administration will quietly settle his contract and let him move on.

 
#48
ww
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 5:56 PM EDT

and please…….no more posts of the fight song. If we are changing coaches, can we get the band and/or cheerleaders to change that 2nd half flag barrage and accompanying ballad. Some of those time out songs are older than me. Show some creativity. Much like the student swear section needs creative chants. I liked “just like football” at the Purdue game.

I apologize, I am bored, but pumped for this game tonight.

 
#49
IU Jimmy
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 6:39 PM EDT

Hey ww,

Why would you want to change the 2nd Half Timeout with the flags??? Whats wrong with William Tell and the fight song? It was named the best timeout in all of sports by SI a while back. Most of the students (including me) love it.

 
#50
Eric
Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 8:02 PM EDT

I’m with Jimmy – GOTTA love the William Tell at the approx 7:00 minute mark!

 
#51 Saturday, February 23, 2008 - 8:29 PM EDT

What a shame! The Big Ten network has taken this Hoosier fan out of the picture. Do away with the big ten network and stop gouging us for supporting our Hoosiers, especially now!

 
#52 Monday, February 25, 2008 - 12:26 PM EDT

Bradley – The phone calls are only considered a “minor” violation. The major violations came from lies he told the NCAA, not the calls themselves.

ww – Usually like your post, but leave the flags and the William Tell Overture time out alone. I have took friends from other states to see this, sent them youtube video links, and they all agree it will give you goose bumps to hear 18,000 people clapping in unison to that and singing the fight song.

Did anyone else notice that it appears the team is boarding the plane on a frozen lake? I know they are not, but come on, can’t IU afford to clear away the ice for the guys.

 


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