Kelvin Sampson on the Way Out at Indiana

daniel somervilleContributor IFebruary 13, 2008

The Kelvin Sampson firing watch has officially shifted into overdrive at Indiana, now that the NCAA has issued a report detailing five major violations—including knowingly lying to the Infractions Committee.
UPDATE: 2/15/2008 - IU's President McRobbie has launched a new investigation.  This looks like a classic "lawsuit avoidance" strategy, because nearly everyone associated with Indiana is now calling for Sampson's firing, but IU does not want to face a wrongful termination lawsuit.  Looks like the GiG really is up in a week, unless they choose to suspend him even sooner.  The NBA may be Samspon's only coaching refuge after this is all over. 
I don't know even one Hoosier fan who wants this guy around anymore, and most are actively calling for his immediate dismissal. 
My question is this: If you know they are going to be watching you closely following the crap you pulled at Oklahoma, why would you be so blatant about cheating at your new school too?

Here is the Kelvin Sampson sanctions timeline:
2000-2004: Oklahoma head basketball coach Kelvin Sampson and his staff make 577 impermissible phone calls.

2005: Oklahoma freezes contract renegotiations, salary increases, and postseason bonuses for Sampson for a two-year period.

2005: An internal investigation determined members of Oklahoma’s men’s basketball program made or attempted to make impermissible phone calls to 17 prospects between April 2000 and September 2004, made three impermissible in-person contacts with recruits, and improperly gave a T-shirt to one recruit and the parent of one recruit.
The NCAA also alleges Sampson failed to adequately monitor his staff’s telephone calls to recruits during that period and the university had inadequate monitoring procedures in place.
March 29, 2006: Indiana hires Sampson.

April 20, 2006: Sampson signed a contract whose terms say IU “may take further action, up to and including termination” if the NCAA imposes more significant penalties or sanctions than the University of Oklahoma’s self-imposed sanctions.
This provision was not included in the agreement Sampson signed when IU decided in March to hire him to succeed Mike Davis. The contract also gives Indiana the right to fire Sampson without obligation if his assistant coaches committed serious or repeated NCAA rules violations.

April 21, 2006: IU athletic director Rick Greenspan and Sampson attend an NCAA hearing along with Oklahoma officials in Park City, Utah. The hearing centers around the impermissible phone calls from 2000-2004.

May 25, 2006: The NCAA committee issues penalties on Sampson that prohibit him from making any recruiting phone calls or taking part in any off-campus recruiting for one year.

Aug. 16, 2006: The National Association of Basketball Coaches, through its ethics committee, sanctions Sampson for the same recruiting violations that the NCAA punished him for—including three years of probation.

May 25, 2007: The NCAA sanctions against Kelvin Sampson are lifted upon completion of the one-year penalty.

Oct. 14, 2007: The Indiana University Department of Athletics announces that a series of recruiting sanctions and corrective actions are being imposed on Sampson and his staff after finding further phone call violations.
Feb. 8, 2008: IU receives a Notice of Allegations from the NCAA saying Sampson knowingly violated recruiting restrictions imposed for violations at Oklahoma, failed to comport himself at IU in accordance with generally accepted standards of honesty, and failed to promote an atmosphere for rules compliance in IU’s basketball program. The notice refuted Sampson’s assertions that he didn’t know IU was violating the recruiting restrictions and it said he repeatedly provided IU and NCAA enforcement staff with false information.

Feb. 13, 2008: IU issued a press release in which Greenspan said he is extremely disappointed with the NCAA’s new allegations regarding Sampson. “To say the least, we view these allegations with grave concern and will cooperate fully with the NCAA as they adjudicate these charges,” Greenspan said.


NEWSFLASH - Wenesday, March 19, 2008: One day after IU loses its opening round NCAA tournament game to Mississippi State, IU's embattled coach is fired by the University for "conduct unbecoming of a coach or human being."
This last one is my own entry of course, but is probably close to the truth. Indiana will let him stay through the season with the hope that he can make a good run in the NCAA tourney. DJ White and Eric Gordon are gone after this season, and many of the recruits who are considering Indiana are sure to bail as well, given the uncertainty that is swirling about the program.
So many folks warned IU about this when they hired him, but AD Rick Greenspan chose to bring the liar to Bloomington anyway. Does this sound familiar Michigan (see Rich Rodriguez).
Greenspan is also going to get the axe, as well he should. As Indiana AD, Rick has overseen the absolute demolition of Indiana athletics, running a once proud basketball program into the ground. In addition, the Hoosier football attendance is BY FAR the lowest in the Big Ten at just over 25,000 per game—creating massive revenue issues that are only going to get worse as high-dollar donors leave the program like rats on a sinking ship.