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Sampson Fired?????

Thumbnail image for kelvin-sampson.jpgFirst things first......this post is completely speculative. I'm not here to give Kirk Herbstreit type scoops that are completely inaccurate and say they are the word of God himself, only to play them off until I can not possibly defend myself any longer. However, if this is true.....it is very big news, Godzirra like news. If it is not true, our lives will continue on as normal.

I heard tonight from a supposedly reliable source that Kelvin Sampson is going to be fired as head coach of the Indiana University men's basketball team. We all already know the trouble that he has already been in with the phone call violations and what not. I have heard that other trouble has been brewing in Hoosier land that deals directly with the Jordan Crawford and Armon Bassett suspensions. Supposedly, these suspensions stem from the Chicago Invitational Challenge that IU took part in from 18-24 November. The reason for these suspensions has been a very vaguely portrayed as a "breaking of team rules". I believe and I think a lot of people have assumed that these suspensions stemmed from some type of drug use. These are college kids.....they were chill'n in Chi-town, with some hometown fools (Ellis and Thomas), this is a very possible reason for these suspensions. And it appears that it could a plausible reason for Sampson's dismissal.

The rumor mill says that Crawford and Bassett are not the only players involved in this supposed scandal, nearly the entire team took part in this illicit drug use and more suspensions will happen. It appears that Sampson may be spreading the suspensions out, you know, so he can actually put a team on the court. The only players that I heard were not involved included DJ White, Eric Gordon and Lance Stemler. We've got our phenom and some senior leadership listed there....so that's good, but I gotta say I think Stem inhaled.

If this is all true then it could be the last of Sampson's mounting troubles at IU, as he has already compiled a nice list of problems. We'll have to wait this news out as I heard it was going to break tonight, but nothing has come across the headlines yet. We'll keep you posted.....

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Kelper said

This type of speculation doesn't really do anyone any good. I think you get more readers than a lot of blogs, so putting up something like this is really irresponsible in my opinion, but obviously it is your prerogative. If even a little of this turns out to be true, it will take IU basketball years to recover...years.

Bruce Paine said

Irresponsible!? Irresponsible!? Who are you kidding?

1. This is our sports blog and we are responsible to no one but ourselves.

2. Who would we be responsible to?

3. It is a fact that there are student athletes at Indiana University that smoke weed.

4. It is a fact that student athletes at Indiana University have been punished for illicit drug use before.

5. It is a fact that Bruce Paine once stood next to IU's quarterback in a basement party on 12th street while he smoked a joint (yes, marijuana).

6. You, Kelper, were sitting on the couch of your own home when a very reliable source said that IU's athletic director's job was in jeopardy.

Now, it just so happens that the reliable source I just spoke of said that if anyone was going to get tossed in the IU athletic department that it would be Rick Greenspan, the AD. I, however, believe it entirely plausible that Sampson is on thin ice. Look at his track record. The internet is the bathroom wall. We can say whatever we wish however we wish to say it. If you don't think there is any merit or if you have information that refutes this, I am sure Buck would happily welcome it. As far as this type of speculation I concerned, it makes sense, just because you don't like it doesn't make it irresponsible.

Oh, and if Stemler inhaled it was just because of the peer pressure, he didn't really like it.

We broke the Hep news with good sources.......Buck knows how it goes, so I don't think he'd post this unless he felt confident in his source.

It is pretty interesting how the suspensions have kind of followed one another. I thought maybe Bassett and Crawford got into a fight in practice or something and that was the reason, but I wasn't sure.

Kelper said

I have been under the impression since the initial suspension of Crawford that it was related to missing classes or being late to/missing practice. Not once have I read any of the frequent message board posters that [also] have reliable sources mention anything about drugs. Like I said, if it is true so be it. I knew about the extent of Hep's condition well in advance of his passing too, but I didn't feel the need to publish it for anyone in the world to read. For IU's sake, I hope the rumor is untrue...but for Buck's end of it, I hope there is some credence to the content.

Also...Paine and I just worked out the math of the schedule over the phone and IU could suspend Bassett, Ellis and Thomas 3 games each and have them all back by the UConn game (Jan 26th), which is before they play any of the tougher Big 10 games (Wisc/OSU/MSU).

Jimmy said

LOL. Thats a heck of a conspiracy theory there Jack.

David said

It must be nice to be able to write something like that, and not have to be accoutable if you're wrong.

I read one of the comments on Inside the Hall where drugs were brought up. I just went back to look for it but they have like a hundred posts over there and I don't have the heart to find it.

I know about a lot of things that I don't feel the need to post about, we all do. It's great that you have such a better moral compass than we do on situations when it comes to IU. Buck runs with it, we are behind him.

Actually...found it: http://www.insidethehall.com/2007/12/09/the-morning-after-kentucky/

"in Armon Bassett’s case at least — again: this is a rumor — a quick puff of the wacky tobaccy."

Jack Cobra said

"LOL. Thats a heck of a conspiracy theory there Jack."

We were laughing about the math, too.

David said

So you found one post on a message board, and now you're justified in tarring the entire team as drug users? A reasonable person would have "such a better moral compass" than to post such unsubstantiated dreck. I hope no one in your family ever is in the public eye.

Kelper said

Like I said, I hadn't seen any of that talk prior to Buck's post, so I appreciate the additional information. I also appreciate the sarcasm, but that is something I have come to expect. Just realize that the passion I have for IU rivals that which you have for the Cubs and Bulls. I will want to defend them in many the same ways you do your teams, and will find somethings difficult to swallow. The rumor mill has been churning hardcore this week and this is the icing on the cake. I admittedly can't provide anything to contradict what is here, which is why I appreciate the additional info you linked from InsideTheHall.

Dave...1) we have a source, 2) I've not only lived in the 'public eye', but so has my family since we have been lucky enough to have a few professional athletes.

And...as Kelper said, I was only providing information that I had read elsewhere to show that others were indeed talking about it.

Dave said

Maybe so, but it's the same "source" everybody else has been hearing for two weeks without any verification. You speculate after a first paragraph that tries to clear you of any guilt, responsiblity or expectation of accuracy that you would actually expect out of a journalist. Is your "supposedly reliable source" speculating too, or someone actually with first-hand information?

Bruce Paine said

Dave. It feels fucking great. I love that "Congress shall make no law...abridging the freedom of speech. It is so awesome that I have a boner for it right now. What is better is knowing that we said something we have a source for and knowing that if we are wrong and anybody wants to get in there and show us how wrong we are how easy it will be for us to stand up and say, "we were wrong." And, while I am at it, I hope that the millions of dollars paid to Coach out of our tax money will help assuage the terrible harm we have done him.

Kelper. If sarcasm hurts your feelings so much you should get tougher skin, a better sense of humor, or other hobbies. (no, this isn't said with the same sarcasm as the above comment)

Oh, and Kelper, you are wrong about something yourself. We knew about Heps condition before he died, confirmed its gravity, and DID NOT POST ON IT. We were very careful not to post on it and discussed at length amongst the writers here and the sources that provided us the information that we would not write about it before it happened. This is a detailed assessment of how CobraBrigade collected information on Heps condition and disseminated it. It appeared in the June 20 post following Hep Passing away.

"I then told them that if their information was medically based I didn't want to know about it. The Cobra Brigade never had any intention of investigating that or breaking that sort of news. Regardless, five individuals responded to the query and all said that it was based on medical information. Two were very specific and after a few phone calls to a third party, were confirmed to our satisfaction to be truthful. Cobra wisely decided that reporting on Hoeppner's health, at that stage, was not our place. On June 15, when IU announced that Bill Lynch would take over as head coach, the Cobra Brigade took that as a sign that Hep's situation was deteriorating. We then received emails from some of the same individuals that had initially contacted us indicating that to be the case. Cobra again made the sage decision to post a support blog for Hoeppner and Lynch and leave it there."

So, I guess that is me telling you to stick it. When someone's health is on the line, and the situation is grave, CB is very willing to get out of the way. Clearly, though, we will write about people smoking weed and getting fired because of it.

Dave, I didn't write it, so my comments are just my personal opinion on the matter, or clarification on things I've said. I did call Buck to make sure he was happy with his source and he said he was. Other than that, I'm just reading the post, backing up a fellow Brigade member and forming my own opinion on the matter. We caught a lot of crap for our Coach Hep post(s) because we had 'sources' and no one liked what we said then either. So we are just following our standard operating procedure at this point.

Buck Rampage wrote the post and he is usually on here in the morning. You can also email him at buckrampage@gmail.com, if you want.

If it's inaccurate we'll go ahead and suspend Buck without pay, deal? I trust him, he doesn't just make stuff up.....that's why he's not very funny most times

Bruce Paine said

I don't think we are required to reveal our sources to anyone. We are hear for discussion and entertainment purposes. Yes we had a source. No, we are not responsible to you, Dave, to divulge it. If you have a blog, you should post about what the truth behind these suspensions and our rumors. I will gladly link to it. If anyone has a blog they would like to contradict our story on, do so, we don't mind. We like our story and are going with it for the time being. We aren't responsible to anyone for it. Buck went to the effort to write his post and used a process he found satisfactory, that is all he has to do. Clearly, some readers are troubled by it. The burden befalls them to put forth the effort to prove him wrong. Buck may be a drunk, but if someone can provide him with better information I guarantee he is willing to post it.

Bruce Paine said

The world of blogs must be a fearsome place for people who get their feelings hurt when someone says something derogatory about a team they enjoy. I better stay away from those New England blogs, a constitution as weak as my own may be reduced to tears. Is there an emoticon for tears?
Did we break any laws? Well crap, I guess we will find out soon enough. If the cops kick in Buck's door to drag his drunk ass to jail because he said something negative about Kelvin Sampson we will know. God forbid it be plausible the a coach sanctioned 3 times by the NCAA and who undercut another conference coach in recruiting and who has had trouble keeping his kids in the classroom might be in trouble for not keeping a tight enough leash on their extracurricular activities. God forbid.

Jimmy said

And God forbid people dare question you on what you write on your blog. Good grief, people obviously have an issue with the rumor you posted (which appears to be BS). Deal with it.

Jimmy said

Oh, and one more thing. "Undercut another conference coach in recruiting"....LMAO. Poor Bruce Weber. I guess we should not have let EJ actually go where he wanted to go to college, because God forbid Bruce Weber get his feelings hurt. God forbid.

Herschel Jenkins said

I love the weed

Bruce Paine said

I am dealing with it, I am jumping their shit cause they be doggin my boy. Plain and simple. I will continue to jump they shit till my body turns cold. And...

I love the weed, too. Best weed activity is to get high and watch the skiing and snowboarding videos Warren Miller made back in the 90s and order a Big Ten. (thin crust with pepperoni)

Damn, you were all up late arguing over this.

Like I said at the beginning of my post, this is a rumor that I heard from somebody "in the know". I'm not trying to put down the whole IU team, just writing about a possible explanation for these suspensions and the possibility of Coach Sampson being dismissed because of it. I hope it isn't true, but we'd all be stupid to think that it could not be true.

Just like Paine said, I've been at IU parties before with IU athletes taking part in drug use. I've been hanging out with girls at bars who have left to go "smoke" with certain basketball players. It happens, frequently.

If this does turn out to be true then it will be a big blow to IU, if it turns out to be false, go ahead and bitch at me, be happy and don't read my posts anymore.

Extra P. said

I could see how readers might be offended by this if it were written by, say, fans of UCLA. But it's Indiana fans. Why would they make up something like this about their own team?

bcurt10 said

So were the rumors you heard from the source about the suspensions, and you drew your own conclusions that KS might get fired, or were the rumors actually that he might get fired?

From what I heard, all but a few of the players could get in trouble for the alleged "partying" and as a result Sampson could face the consequences.

I would think that if this is true then Sampson would at least face some type of disciplinary action, moreso than what he received for the phone calls.

If no news does come out about this, one interesting thing to look at in the future would be if there are additional suspensions.

Extra P, you underestimate IU fans' ability to turn on their own in a heartbeat. It's been happening for years now.

Buck (and Cobra), I'll be curious to see how this plays out. If there's some veracity to this rumor, then we should know today --- the furor over the Mitchell Report release would provide a heck of a PR smokescreen for a day or two. Looks like I need to start placing some calls.

Cpt Morgan said

Extra P has an excellent point here...we are IU fans, we love IU basketball, and we love what Sampson is doing for the program...I have known Buck for a while now and he is a trustworthy guy, if he felt that his source was credible, then that source is very likely to be credible.

There are times that I like to post things that are simply done to piss people off, but I'm not a nice human being, and Buck certainly did not do this here...more-than-likely if I met anyone of you, I'd probably punch you in the stomach and spit on you.

I prefer to think that you'd step on their foot to break it so that you can provide medical assistance and charge them double on it.

Cpt Morgan said

Maybe...but punching them and spitting on them could be fun...?

Just saw this on the HT blog, from Sampson's presser today:

Sampson just said he does not anticipate anymore suspensions and that he is not staggering them, as some have suggested.

“If it had all happened at the same time, they would have happened at the same time,” he said.


it also says Bassett is out for Saturday....and he doesn't 'anticipate' any other suspensions which means there could be more but he's just not saying. It's not as if the guy has been that open about stuff during his tenure.

Oh, I'm aware of that. Believe me, I don't trust Sampson any farther than I could throw him. Just thought I'd throw the link your way.

Ah, thanks. Much appreciated!

Bo said

Wow. Talk about irresponsbile speculating. This takes the cake.

Wow. Talk about a short name. Bo takes the cake

Ryan said

The following blurb came off of Hoosier Nation. The article discussed Basset sitting against W Car... "The second-year IU coach also laughed off rumors more suspensions were on the horizon because he was staggering suspensions. Jordan Crawford served a three-game suspension before returning against Kentucky, the same game that Bassett started his suspension... 'I’m not staggering them,' Sampson said. 'I react to them as they come. If they all happened at the same time they would have all done it at the same time. But there’s absolutely no staggering"

Take it for what you will, but I think that should squash your 'comment' on illecit drug use at the Chi invite.. the most feebleminded rumor out there thus far

Go back to when Sampson was hired and how he talked about how clean the program would be with him as the coach.....he's not the most honest guy....Bassett is out this Saturday, too.

Hey.....I'll be more than happy to recant my post as long as the evidence points that direction. I don't want it to be true. However, as a couple of the comments above said, you can't really take Sampson at his word.

We'll just have to wait and see what happens.

Ryan said

Your line of thinking is faulty. Its not what evidence that we have to show that 'points that direction.' Rather the onus is on you since this is your 'reporting'. So in essence, what evidence do you have to suggest otherwise? Who is your contact? Give yourself some cred, give details on this person relationship to IU athletics. He said/ she said really doesn’t prove anything.

We don't give up contacts here, come on.....We've had a lot of help breaking IU Athletics stories and we aren't going to give up names just because you guys are struggling with this. Cobra Brigade, as a whole, has shown its credibility in the past with its due diligence on reporting issues within IU athletics....see Bruce Paine's comments about that or check out his posts on Hep. Thanks

Ryan said

I never said give a name. But if you are trying to convince people that this is whats going down, you better be able to back it up with more than 'a contact'. Or, as you implied above, we should just believe you because 'this one time' you broke some news. You guys are linked to an SI page because of this comment. The more you can provide, the more credible this becomes.

Ryan...either go to the Hep post or read Paine's comment below. We are very thorough in our distribution of things like this when dealing with the IU Athletic Dept. We appreciate the concern for our credibility/accuracy of the post.


This is a detailed assessment of how CobraBrigade collected information on Heps condition and disseminated it. It appeared in the June 20 post following Hep Passing away.

"I then told them that if their information was medically based I didn't want to know about it. The Cobra Brigade never had any intention of investigating that or breaking that sort of news. Regardless, five individuals responded to the query and all said that it was based on medical information. Two were very specific and after a few phone calls to a third party, were confirmed to our satisfaction to be truthful. Cobra wisely decided that reporting on Hoeppner's health, at that stage, was not our place. On June 15, when IU announced that Bill Lynch would take over as head coach, the Cobra Brigade took that as a sign that Hep's situation was deteriorating. We then received emails from some of the same individuals that had initially contacted us indicating that to be the case. Cobra again made the sage decision to post a support blog for Hoeppner and Lynch and leave it there."

And here:


We are following a similar method in this instance as we do with all rumors of this magnitude.

As for the SI thing, that's their choice not ours, but we do appreciate it. We didn't even know about it until about 30 mins ago

Big A said

Absolutely no truth to this whatsoever.

The GM said

It's funny that people won't believe that something like this could be true, but they will believe everything they see on Fox or CNN or even ESPN.

Get your heads out of your asses for a second and take a logical look at this. Could it be true? Yes it could. Could it be false? Yes it could. Is this their site to approach any subject they want? Yes it is. Are they exercising that right? Yes they are.

Just because you don't want to believe something like this could be true doesn't mean that it can't be true. The line between being a fan and a fanatic is quite small and some of you are on the side of fanatic...which isn't a compliment.

Jeff said

Coming from an Indiana University student I've heard stories similar to this. I've heard that
A. The Crawford and Basset suspensions are for drugs
B. Sampson's job is on thin ice, with a possible post season ban in the wings.

Pretty compelling argument there Big A, but I love your site....that is being serious, everyone should check it out. Especially loved the piece on transition D a couple of weeks ago

Which part is there no truth to? That Sampson is on the chopping block, that Bassett is suspended for drug use, etc., etc.

I just re-confirmed this info on my way home from work because you guys have me double checking everything, which is good for the site, bad for stress level....keep up the good work.

Jimmy said

Jeff, how in the world do you know a postseason ban is "waiting in the wings"? NO ONE knows what the NCAA will do, and they aren't going to decide for a while.

The GM said


Read the whole post...he said...HE HEARD...he did not say...I KNOW

Big A said

There's nothing to re-confirm because a Sampson firing is not imminent.

Here are the facts of what has taken place up to this point:

1. NCAA has interviewed those implicated in IU's report conducted by Ice Miller.

2. The next step is that the NCAA will either accept IU's self-imposed sanctions or if they don't, they will launch a more in-depth investigation.

If anything comes out now, it will probably be news that the NCAA has accepted IU's penalties. If there is going to be a difference in opinion, it will likely be months before anything comes out.

Terry Hutchens of the Indy Star also addressed these rumors today on his blog:


Big A....we aren't even talking about the NCAA and phone call issues, or at least I wasn't. I confirmed the suspensions/drugs deal. I should have made that more clear, I was in a hurry. I was running through phone calls/messages and typing at the same time.

Buck has the other stuff, I don't have that kind of pull or the motivation to worry about that. Cpt. Morgan and I have a NCAA compliance director friend who gives us the lowdown/abridged version of all that when necessary/needed. I don't worry until he calls me. I thought Buck just said that the phone calls + the suspensions have put Sampson back on the chopping block big time. That's how I read it and that's how I felt after talking to Buck about it today.

I read the Hutchens post....he wrote what Sampson answered to his questions. I read the Post Conference transcript, too. Same stuff....It would be nothing for Sampson to deny, deny, deny all the way and say that he didn't want to give the opponents the knowledge ahead of time or something like that. We know Bassett is out Saturday and possibly next Saturday, which would make 3 games. We are still rolling on that 'theory'.

We hear a lot, a lot of things and we make sure that we have at least a few sources before running with it. In the end though, sources can be misinformed or things can change. Right now, we are confident that this is how things are.

Greg said

He is going down tomorrow morning for sure. It is a done deal. Smoke meet fire....

knasmiley said

I guess your little network is pressing for notoriety, I guess when you have NO LIFE you run an internet ENQUIRER of sorts. This is the most pathetic thing if you want to call this journalism, it MIGHT be true or it MIGHT not, yeah Jesus is coming too, tomorrow maybe but maybe not........

Get a life you GOOFS.....

Greg...we've heard nothing about tomorrow...nothing. If you have something solid, feel free to share.

knasmiley....we'll stand behind our work. Two sites that I talked to picked up this story. All the other places you've seen it are from other people spreading it. We're not looking for notoriety, page hits, etc. We each have full time jobs that required more than a bachelor's degree and this is just fun to do.Thanks.

Bruce Paine said

We don't have to press for notoriety, we already have a loyal fan base and readership, we don't care what you think. We don't want to call this journalism, we aren't journalists. We are a a doctor, an engineer, a logistician and a stone mason. YOU, knasmiley, are a daft idiot. No, we have no lives, we are late 20s bachelors who drink too much and play sports and video games in our free time. Since we are fairly social fellows we hear a lot of things and we post them on a SPORTS BLOG! What do you want us to do, pretend we didn't hear it? Are you a senior citizen? I would like to know because I don't want to tell a senior citizen just how STUPID they are for coming onto a SPORTS BLOG and telling its writers to get lives. That is like telling a SLINKY to GET BENT.

The best pert is, for those of you who know us and are close to the writers here, at some point when this is all over we are going to be able to tell you who the source is that confirmed the suspension / drug issue and you are going to poop your pants.

BB said

This whole theory was on the scout board the other day, I am sure that was your source.

Also, isn't true that the only time these athletes are drug tested is by the big ten or the NCAA. I had friends that played soccer and that was the way it was for them. I doubt it would be different for basketball. Also, not every player would be submitting to a test.

Finally, why would he stagger the suspension into the big ten season? Sampson isn't stupid and knows he could win the next few games with Gordon, White and the three walk-ons.

Great theory and I bet you are glad you got your traffic today but I hope you are ashamed in a few days as IU fans. Amazingly nobody is going to read your "Sorry we were wrong" post because a blog like the big lead is linking to it. But hey keep spreading the UK/Illini BS rumors

Bruce Paine said

Oh yeah, the stone mason is me, and it didn't take a bachelors to get that job. Now, I do have a degree, a beautiful little thing covered in red leather. I gave it to my mother. She seemed pleased.

Bruce Paine said

He would stagger the suspensions because he loses all his guards if he doesn't. If he staggers them he can rotate individual players out and have them all back for the UCONN game.

Also, who said they were tested? We never specified how the coaches became aware of the instance.

And finally, we won't feel ashamed. We will, however, feel eternally delighted you visited us and rest easy knowing our source is a good one.

I can go ahead and confirm that the 'source' isn't the scout board because before today, I hadn't been over there since Hep passed away and....because I know the source. I re-confirmed with another source this afternoon. There isn't much else I can do. I'm done pushing that point.

You guys are saying traffic, traffic, traffic....we don't care. We aren't making money from this and we aren't pushing to. As Paine eluded to, we have a loyal following and we try to cater to them. We could care less about you guys who float through here. We like the one's who have valid, strong opinions...we laugh at the one's who seem a little weird. I do care when our credibility is questioned because we do follow some personal/blog guidelines that we've set up and followed.

I'm heading to bed. Good night to everyone. I think Paine is leaving out some milk and cookies.

The GM said

Actually, the NCAA doesn't test for weed...they test for the blockers and detox stuff...that came straight from the mouth of the person in charge of the NCAA drug testing...how's that for a source

Jrock said

So you're saying Tabor and Ahlfeld smoke pot? Everyone except Lance, DJ, and EJ right?

Something that one of my fellow bloggers said to me earlier tonight as we were discussing this --- would IU really risk blowing their first good season in a decade by firing Sampson now?

They could very well do it the day after the season ends, but it'd be pretty unprecedented to do it mid-season. I can't recall the last time a coach was fired mid-season...maybe Nolan Richardson's kid at ETSU was the last one?

It is quite interesting that the rumors of SOMETHING happening to Sampson mid-season haven't died in nearly 6 weeks...and, as you said, this is a brand new situation. And it's even more remarkable that the rumors are almost all coming from within the immediate IU family.

What does it matter whether the NCAA tests for weed or not? If true, this situation is being handled within the IU athletic department.

Dave said

Boy, it's nice to come back and see this still simmering.

From the Terry Hutchens blog at Indystar.com:

"There's a thought that you may be staggering these suspensions."

Sampson replied, "Who's thought is that?''

I said, "Maybe mine.''

Sampson then said, "Then that's a bad thought. I'm not staggering them. I react to them as they come. There's no staggering. If they had all happened at the same time, they would have all been at the same time. But there's absolutely no staggering.''

In one of my posts last night, I asked IF the original source was speculating or had first-hand information (not askig for an identity). I'm asking again. I too have heard from a trusted source, but about a firing/postseason ban that was described as speculative. The Herald-Times also has reported an NCAA decision is not near.

If a journalist would go to an editor and say, I heard it from a friend who heard has a source who says X, and it may be true but it may not be, that reporter would be laughed out of most respectable newsrooms. So again, I'll say it: this post impugns people's reputations. Quote the First Amendment, but it does not provide privilege under defamation claims if there's falsehood. It's not enough in my book -- or case law -- to say if you're wrong, "We're not journalists."

Cpt Morgan said

"Great theory and I bet you are glad you got your traffic today but I hope you are ashamed in a few days as IU fans. Amazingly nobody is going to read your "Sorry we were wrong" post because a blog like the big lead is linking to it. But hey keep spreading the UK/Illini BS rumors"

Are you kidding? Do you think we honestly care about "traffic?" As was stated numerous times, we do this for fun! We do not fabricate...but I will be the first to say, and I think that all of the other writers will agree that we are certainly open to speculation...just like I speculated that Barry Bonds was cycling during the season. A speculation at which I still stand by. If Buck Rampage, Bruce, myself or Jack choose to state something on this blog that he felt was credible and make an assumption, then a speculation off of that, then that is our right. If you don't like to read it, feel free to tell us about it. Tell us that we are full of shit, tell us that we don't know what we are talking about...you have that right, and we actually encourage it...but telling us that we are irresponsible, out for nototiety, or actually have the balls to say that we have no life is completely outrageous.

Buck's line of thinking is far from faulty. He was given some information that he felt was credible, put this information into print, and then formed an opinion about it and expressed it here...If you feel that this is journalism, then I'm sorry to dissapoint...at the best, this blog is an op ed, and that is the way we like it...

Bruce Paine said

Sue us. Do it nancy, sue us. We dig our sources. The only reputations we would be impugning would be those of the kids involved, and our source on that topic is good enough for us. I fail to see, and I am sure the courts would agree, how we have defamed Kelvin Sampson. Is it entirely unreasonable for anyone to think that a coach who has been sanctioned 3 times and is staring down the potential barrel of a fourth is on choppy water with his boss? NO! Is it entirely unreasonable to think that a school might drop a coach should loss of scholarships or post season appearances become and issue? No. Is it entirely unreasonable to think that the 7.62 mm ammunition used by Iraqis against US soldiers is being shipped to the region by the US government?

You're a towel!

The GM said

What does it matter...a failed drug test HAS to be reported to the NCAA...HAS TO...get that...HAS TO

Dave....go back to Hutchens 'live chat' or whatever he calls it and see what HIS stance is on the suspensions. Not what Sampson told him today. Brief question/answer thingy here:

59. Is there any truth or possiblity that Coach Sampson is smarter than we think regarding the Crawford and Bassett suspensions? In other words, could they have been planned? I only ask because the suspensions didn't overlap and they came in the first half of the season, after the team's first real gut-check in Xavier.

Answer: It's an interesting idea. The cynic in me wonders if there's another suspension coming after Bassett returns. Perhaps there were more than two players that required being suspended, and he's just spacing them out. Hard to say. If this is all a charade of sorts, it turned out to be one with a gamble once Gordon got hurt. I have a hard time believing it could be that way, but I guess you never know.

He also talks about how there are student privacy issues that prohibit the school from discussing the suspensions at length.

Now....seeing as I had another phone call a minute ago....

In one of my posts last night, I asked IF the original source was speculating or had first-hand information (not askig for an identity). I'm asking again.

I won't speak about the original sources but my two sources have first hand information about the suspensions and reasons for. When we started getting a ton of comments I went and checked my own sources for info and their answers I've discussed with you guys.

As for the NCAA and all that stuff, as I said before, I'm not going to get into it because I haven't been following it closely enough. It would be foolish of me to try to talk about it. I have a NCAA Compliance Director that fills me in on all of that info and I haven't been motivated to talk to him yet.

While reading Buck's post I came to the conclusion that his source knew that the NCAA issues PLUS the suspensions issues have once again put Sampson's head on the chopping block. I talked with Buck numerous times today and he's very content with his source(s) and their validity.

Now (this is you Dave)....

So again, I'll say it: this post impugns people's reputations. Quote the First Amendment, but it does not provide privilege under defamation claims if there's falsehood. It's not enough in my book -- or case law -- to say if you're wrong, "We're not journalists."

Dave...I'll stand by what my sources say even if the media says otherwise. When thermocaster said, "it's even more remarkable that the rumors are almost all coming from within the immediate IU family"...I can say that there aren't many people higher up on the chain of command than my source for when it comes to the substance abuse issues.

I keep falling into the trap of re-explaining myself to you guys.

I want to make one last point here....actually two. 1) We are IU fans first and foremost. We aren't fans from other teams flaming up these rumors for publicity. Check our posts labeled 'IU' and I hope you'll see that. 2) You guys have said, "on my blog..on my blog". Where is your blog? Other than thermocaster very few of you have put in your blog addresses. We love to read about IU in a non-message board settting (like Inside the Hall), so if you would pass along your blog addresses, we'd love to check them out. Thanks.

Cpt Morgan said

But does the NCAA have to report it to the public?

Fernando said

GM - Yeah, right. And the NCAA requires excessive phone calls to be reported by coaches, too. We're not dealing with a coach that has a long history of compliance with "HAS TO" types of rules, ya know?

Dave - Are you really using the words of Sampson, who was found to be a habitual liar by the NCAA, as some sort of premise for a defamation claim? Gimme a friggin' break.

The GM said

Not that I'm aware of Cpt...but I don't think they would allow the school to suspend the players whenever they wanted.

The GM said

Fernando -

Guess you don't need me to prove it to you that schools get put on probation. But I'm the moron I suppose!

Fernando said

GM, I never called you a moron, but if that's how you feel about yourself...

Now, think about this logically. IU is already in hot water with the NCAA over this second round of excessive phone calls by Sampson. Everything the program does is being watched from up close. Suddenly, at the start of the best regular season in 15 years, most of your team is (allegedly) found to have used illegal drugs.

How do you think the program responds in that case? You really think they're gonna go trotting up to the NCAA with a bunch of pee cups, saying "Hey, guess what we found!".

The GM said

And what do you suppose would happen if they didn't and then they get caught...that is called thinking logically?

Maybe you should read my post about telling the truth!


Anonymous said

isn't Cobra Brigade just a thinly veiled allusion to a homosexual gang bang? but really, your claims would make much more sense if they didn't stand in the face of all reasonable logic...sorry about your blog...but i bet you had fun looking for that cool graphic of the snake!

Gotta love anonymous. Always knows when to kick in with the humor. The answer is no and we didn't look for that graphic, someone else did.

Fernando said

GM - I want the three minutes of my life back that I wasted reading that link.

Of course they're in trouble if/when they get caught. But they're in trouble already...that's the point you seem to be missing. What difference does it make when they report it? They'd be on probation regardless.

Bruce Paine said

No, you're a towel.

Dave said

to Jack Cobra:
thanks for a lucid, and descriptive, response to my question about the sources. While I disagree with your some of your points (obviously), I think your explanation to me was the most lucid post I've read in this thread. I would have been a lot more careful on suggesting most of the team used illegal drugs, but hey, your blog at the end of the day.

Bruce Paine: I hope you're not an IU fan, because you're the biggest
blowhard, self-congratulating gasbag I've read on many a message board. And you're a "towel."

Try to have legitimate discussion with people instead of blasting them merely for questioning a pretty brash suggestion from a second hand source reported on a Web site.

Dave said

didn't even mention Sampson being defamed, please read it closer.

I'm talking about the team, even excluding Bassett and Crawford. Please give me any evidence that the other players committed a drug crime of possession or influence.

Fernando said

Dave- Nor did I claim you were mentioning Sampson being defamed. Please read it closer.

You're asking us to take the words of a habitual liar as proof of players' adherence to rules and law. Sorry, but you have far more faith in Sampson's word than I do.

Bruce Paine said

Dave: you have no idea. You have absolutely perfected the description of my personality. You nailed it. I am getting it on a shirt.

Bruce Paine
Self-Congratulating Gasbag...
And Right

Was that too self-congratulating? Is there such a thing? It was intended to be juvenile and flippant as well. I hope I nailed it.

Rob said

How'd that 10am presser go? Is Sampson still coach? When does the search committe begin. Maybe you can "break" that story too. LOL!! You guys have lost what small ounce of credibilty you had, if you had any at all. Hilarious to see you idiots eat crow!

knasmiley said

Ok, I am ready to poop my pants on who your source was, there is no source is my guess. I bet I check back in an hour or so and there wont be a source just a maybe next week type of thing or change of plans, its going to happen monday after the weekend game. As for your BA or above, letting rumors like this fly I would be surpised if you didnt get your education from cracker jack box.........

Hope to see the source....

Rob...we never said anything about a 10 am press conference. You guys need to understand something. The only thing that we've written is on this post.....on this website. I've looked at the message boards where people have put our link, because there are some odd one's, and they are the one's saying stuff about a Friday press conference. If you can find where we say that in this post, let me know.

Next about the source (again), you aren't going to see it. We've said that all along, too. As for my/our education....you are wrong on that one, too.

Matt Painter's Boyfriend said

Buck Rampage = Bruth Webber? Oh Bruthy you stop this nonsense. Remember that time you, matty boy, and me had a three way kiss... gosh that was orgasmic.

Jay said

Today is my first time visiting this site. To say the least it is interesting. I find it intersting that in your 20's one of you is doctor, must be close to a genius.
The logisitician must work at the local freight company, and the engineer is a domestic one, cleaning other people's toilets. The stone mason is my hero, at least he is working.
Your talk about sources is intersting. You seem to hold yourselves in much higher esteem than real journalists, you know people who are actually held accountable for what they write or say.
Your stated position about Coach Hep, was that for your egos?
You guys have your fun, which I am sure you are. Keep having fun, but why when it is possibly hurting others?
If you are in your 20's you'll hopefully mature, if not the rest of the world will not wonder anything, because you are "towels" which seems to be a favorite sarcastic remark, at least here.

Thanks for stopping by Jay. It's great when people come to read one post on a site filled by over 500 of them. The doctor, nearly 29, is actually pretty intelligent. You should check out his posts on injuries, located under "Sports Injuries". The engineer and logistician both work for government agencies and the stone mason is your hero so there isn't a need for any explanation to you. We are each 'working', some with our minds, some with our hands. Interesting swipe at us though.

The Coach Hep was to show that we won't just post whatever we hear. We sat on that story for months...months.

You speak of these 'real journalists' as people who are held accountable for what they write or say...this is totally off topic, but I'm going to have to disagree with you there. How many times have you watched ESPN or read an opinion article on a mainstream media site where it seems that what the writer says is totally wrong or misguided (check out Scoop Jackson)? It happens quite often. We hold each other accountable for what we write. That's good enough for us.

We aspire to never 'mature'. I'm not even sure what 'towels' means. That's Bruce's thing. Thanks again.

bb said

I will give you guys credit for responding to my post and everyone else's.

Do you really think having the players back for a UConn is more important then the 6 big ten games before them.

For instance at Iowa, terrible team but Carver is always a tough place to play. AT Minny, the way Tubby has them playing D and at the barn another tough place to play and then against the Illini? Every big ten game is far more important then an unranked UConn team.

Also, with the whole traffic thing, if you didn't care about traffic or making money why have advertisments on your site and you track everyone that comes to your site and where they come from?

Sorry but your theory just doesn't seem to have legs based on the fact that I think more would be suspended for these cupcakes coming up. Maybe not all of them at once but one guard and one forward possibly at a time or two guards at a time since we have enough of them.

I'll tell you a secret....I couldn't even tell you who one of our advertisers are. Someone else puts them there. I couldn't even tell you how or why....seriously. Personally, I track what posts people are reading so we know what our readers want. I've gone a little more in-depth the past day or so because I'm wondering where the heck everyone is coming from and why they are thinking things we didn't even write about.

This is purely a shot in the dark here but if you were a coach who is possibly on the 'chopping block' do you think it's good to have a bunch of suspended players all out at once? Especially since this is happening while people are talking so much about how Sampson's control over the program isn't that good. I would think he'd try to get them out one at a time, maybe make up an new excuse (players fought/bad grades/missed class/or just say someone was injured) each time it happens. With such a young, inexperienced team I would think Sampson would have to be very careful as to who he's sitting and when. We'll know more after Bassett's suspension is up.

I do have to say this about Minny...they are horrendous. I know they are putting up some decent defensive stats but they've played one good team (FSU) and were beaten handily. You are right though, strange things happen at the Barn. Thanks for dropping by.

bb, good thought on the UConn deal, but Jack has a good point also. To be honest the last thought in my mind in putting up the post was to get people riled up and have a lot of hits. I never sit around thinking what will get people to the site. I just write about what interests me. I heard the info for this post and thought it was very interesting and thought the people who normally read our site would think the same thing.

As Jack said, we did not send this post out to a lot of sites in an attempt to get linked to. We did not plan on the thing getting picked up on SI, that was their choice. Hell, I never get linked to by any site. Jack is usually the only person that gets linked to out of all of us.

Ya, the post includes some shocking info and thoughts, but you can go back and read our past posts and realize that we aren't people that write shit just to cause a riot and get noticed.

BB said

hey I know that you lease out ad space, but hey traffic is what gets people to click on those random things. Anyway, not my point in the least. You guys are growing on me and we will see, I just hate these rumors flying constantly about him.

Personally, I just don't think he is on that much of a hotseat. Ice Miller knows what they are doing and are notorious for advising a sacrifical lamb, RS. (Sidenote on him, I found it interesting he was watching Stephenson play. I have a feeling he already has a gig lined up for next year and is staying in contact with these top east coast guys or he is staying in contact with them to leverage a spot with the team next year.)

Sampson is going to get the most job security by winning and more importantly winning the big ten. With our past road struggles, especially in the barn at Minny, I know they aren't good but Tubby has them playing as a team. If IU isn't hitting outside shots we could be in for a fight up there.

I guess we will see

Kelper said

BB--his point was that on the BlogsByFans network, there is someone that runs all of the blogs. He is the one that maintains the ad space and not the guys that write for CobraBrigade.com.

knasmiley said

I guess backing off your first thought of giving your source up, he obviously isnt a good one. All this back-pedaling is comedic, I dont read the enquirer and I certainly will never visit this online version of it............

If you have a source in the NCAA compliance dept, I am the Pope, RMK and the little energizer bunny. Pathetic to call yourselves IU fans, give me a break and trying to use Heps condition as a SCOOP for your IN THE KNOW is a joke, everyone knew what was going to happen.

Enquirer you are, pathetic............

The GM said


For someone that doesn't care to read this "enquirer" you keep commenting and coming back to check for replies. Seems like you just need to fish for attention...talk about pathetic.

Cpt Morgan said

knasmiley- we don't care if you don't come back, but I will say that we do have firneds that work for universities that no much more about NCAA regulations than you or I...I know that it was mentioned back during this post that if there is a failed drug test, then the NCAA must find out about it, this is in false. The NCAA administers their own drug screening randomly throughout the year amongst universities athletic teams. The university has the right to test their athletes and many of them do...but I believe that this is not Buck stating that there was testing and they failed, I believe it was him going off something that was told to him about the athletes violating team policy, and from what was told to him, that violation was drugs...

There is no back pedaling, and there is certainly no reason for us to give up the source. We write what we feel is correct and for the most part interesting information...

I have had good friends say to me that this past blog was irresponsible, but I think what ultimately bothers most of you is that this information presented to you could possibly be true...

Bruce Paine said

Morgan is certainly right. What is most offensive to these disgruntled fans is that they hadn't heard anything about it themselves through a source they knew or trusted. If they had heard it through peegs or the ht then they would have been more satisfied. Hell, if they were trolling for townies at the Highland Lounge and heard it from a drunk drywall finisher they wouldn't have thought twice, ignored it, and said nothing. They have decided that since they can't conceive of its possibility and because they want to assert a loyalist belief then it must not be true. I also think that a lot of folks are coming back because they think that if they make enough gay jokes about us we will give in and reveal our source. We won't.

Oh, and it wasn't Buck that kissed Matt Painter, it was me, and he is a lovely man and is passionately concerned about the shrinking population of Alaska grizzlies. He wore a blue tie and had very nice teeth.

bkelt said

I hate in when ppl disagree with an opion and resort to calling names etc. it does nothing to help your argument. I disagree with much of what the story said also but come on how does acting like a kid help. Now on to my argument lol. You wonder how ppl get a 10am presser out of you article it goes like this, some ppl read your story and some comments then tell others and then tehy tell someone and stuff gets added to it for effect, rumors grow. Kinda like 1 player having a rumor of possibly smoking week and it grows into the whole team smoking weed. Especially when nothing is reveild from teh actual players and coaches. People automatically assume the worst when not givien any info. His job wouldnt be in anymore jepordy if he suspened most at once especially in recent weeks and upcoming weeks. If the student athletes were caught smoking weed especially a whole team and also have failed drug tests then the AD and others would know also because not just the coach gets the results. The action of them doing this would get him fired not how he suspends them. The NCAA rulings...well same thing all speculation because we dont even know when they will decide yet. i can talk to 4 different ppl who know somebody from teh NCAA and will get 3 different answers, depending on how talks went that day.

Hoosier Fan said

I'm sorry, but the best thing on here was Matt Painters Boyfriend. That was great. In the midst of all this crazy, he said, he didn't say, maybe tomorrow, for sure the next day. That was GREAT!! I needed a good laugh. I didn't poop my pants but I think I peed.

Rob said

If you weasels want to be taken seriously, don't post garbage. Seriously, you still have a little egg on your face, you missed a spot. You make Herbstriet look like Woodward or Bernstein.

ray said

this is the first and last time i will post on this site. by looking at the posts already provided i can tell how this will all work (i post my comments and opinions only to be told that i'm wrong...then, i'm given the same response they've been giving others throughout...that being, "my buddy knows because he used to smoke weed with an iu athlete" and "how could we be wrong when we made one other prediction"). that said, i did find it somewhat humorous that people are getting worked up over allegations made by a couple of foul-mouthed, weed-smoking, rumor-spreading folks who have a "contact". they're a bunch of buddies posting back and forth to boost one another's ego by giving one another props for telling the world that someone who is sick may die. wow guys, thanks for your medical wisdom and going out on a limb. it is true that athletes do wrongful things and they are apparently aware that it "happens all the time", so why are they making such a big deal out of this? the answer...they are caught up in the "if it bleeds, it leads" media frenzy desperately searching for a way to get everyone excited. well, sorry guys but i'm not. how are a couple of bloggers like you going to know about this when the true media (we all know how hungry they are for headlines) have nothing to tell? by the way...for those of you interested, bigA and the guys at "inside the hall" have a clean and legit blog site for iu fans that is worth reading.

The GM said

It is funny that people think a site that has tons of regular readers "needs" attention. Take a look at the other posts on the site. 99% have comments.

If a person doesn't like to be told their opinion is wrong, they should probably move to a country where you can only have one opinion. That way, your thin skinned feelings don't get hurt.

Have you ever had a party where you invited a few people and then all of a sudden tons of people show up...then those people start to get a bit unruly.....then when you try to talk to them they get worked up even more? Finally you just call the cops, to your own house, to get them to leave.....That's what is happening here.

We made a post based on source(s) that we have. We thought 'our readers' would enjoy it. How this post got on so many different message boards, I'll never know. As you can tell, when all of you showed up...those guys (besides The GM) left. Those are the readers we care about. That's why we keep on putting up new posts.

If you all left....and never came back....it would not bother me one bit. Please, please, please go to Inside the Hall (insidethehall.com), it is a great site and they have some excellent breakdowns about IU Basketball. I read it every time IU has a game. Go over there, but at least be nice. Please.

Even if everything worked out exactly how we explained it to you....we would catch grief from someone about something. I understand that it is your right to comment about whatever you want, but we can only explain it to you so many times. We aren't giving up our sources....I've told one other IU blogger where my source came from and they said "that's a heck of a source, and explains a lot about why this story slipped by all my normal sources."

That's all you guys get. There isn't any more to tell. Thanks for stopping by.

Hoosier Fan said

I agree with you cobra brigade guys to an extent about being able to speak your mind and YOUR opinions. I do think it is wrong when it causes other people pain. I am not mentioning the fact that it may be true, I am talking about the repercussions of you putting it out there for the world to see and talking to everyone about things that are truly NONE OF OUR BUSINESS! If we are not part of the problem OR part of the solution, this really does not concern ANY of us, except for those involved. So I guess my question is this. What did you hope to gain from this? Was it for people to come back and pat you on the back and say "Wow, nice job!" And please don't say there was not SOME sort of gratification you hope to gain from this or don't say,"But we are IU fans and we don't want this to be true." Someday, hopefully all of you will understand that what you are doing just isn't right. Enough said!

Tommy Wilson said

I have heard this rumor as well.

There seems to be all kinds of smoke in the sky. One of my friends at IU said the players are acting strange.

Kerry Underwood said

I can tell you for a fact that DJ White has puffed the cheeba before...

How do I know? My cousin smoked it with him at IU their freshman years.

Bruce Paine said

It is our business. We pay/have paid the salaries of the IU employees as students and as tax payers. We support the university as alumni. We watch their games. It is, in every way, our business. We wanted our regular readers to know what we were hearing. That is a pretty simple answer. There is nothing wrong with what we are doing. Who is getting hurt by us? Kids aren't getting suspended by us. People aren't being dismissed from their job or scholarship because of us. The only thing getting hurt is the feelings of people that don't want to believe that this sort of thing is happening at IU. For those folks, I can't help them in any walk of life except opening a door at the grocery store. If your feelings got hurt because of what you read on a blog you need tougher skin. I know what it is like to cause people real pain. I have hit people low when they are coming across the middle, I have stolen girlfriends. What pain are we causing? If someone implicated in the situation we have outlined feels like their life is being invaded upon they shouldn't have stepped into the light of a Big Ten basketball program. They shouldn't have taken OUR millions of dollars to be our coach and then squirreled around on our clock. They shouldn't have been smoking during the season. They should understand the standards they are being held to and respond accordingly. If anyone gets "hurt" by what four guys say on their blog then something bigger is wrong. The only people who are hurt by this post are people who have decided to build ill-conceived notions in their minds of what should and should not matter. They have made the integrity of IU basketball something ethereal and allowed it to guide their emotions. If those people are hurt by this post, it is very much their fault.

Pursuant to Jack Cobra's instructions I will no longer be posting on this thread. The mighty Bruce Paine has left the building (and is going to eat a sandwich).

Bob Knight said

What's wrong with weed? HUH?

Andy said

Nobody has paid any taxes that pay for the salaries of any athletic department employees. The athletic department is a separate entity and donors, ticket sales, etc foot the entire athletic department budget.

Nice article, thank you. Can you tell us about the second paragraph in more detail?

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