Now, for your regularly scheduled programming:
As I said in this blog, whoever can conquer the recruiting mountain known as Chicago can and will take the mantra of best school in the state of Illinois.
By signing Ryan Hare, Southern Illinois is one step closer to that mantra.
Hare officially signed his letter of intent today and will join a stellar recruiting class which includes two of Missouri's top players, Anthony Booker and Torres Roundtree, and Illinois Mr. Basketball Kevin Dillard.
Hare fills one of two available scholarships after freshman Brandon Wood and sophomore Jordan Armstrong asked for, and were granted their release from their commitments.
In the linked release, Saluki coach Chris Lowery notes the importance of keeping tabs on in-state players.
"We want to make sure we protect and not let the best players get out of Illinois," Lowery said.
DING! DING! DING! Weeeeeeee have a winner!!!!!!
For a while there, I was scared, but it's evident that Coach Lowery gets it! If Lowery can succeed where every other coach in this state has failed in recent years, SIU will shed the label of "the next Gonzaga" and in fact be better than the Bulldogs!
Yeah, I said it, call me out on it. Want proof, here it is!
Illinois' Bruce Weber is a great coach, in fact, he might be the best X's and O's coach in all of college basketball. However, Weber is known for coaching up lesser talent and getting the best out of "average" players.
DePaul used to get the top Chicago kids, like when Bobby Simmons, Quentin Richardson and Lance Williams all came out at once. But those teams are long gone, and you can blame former coach Pat Kennedy for that.
See, Kennedy decided he would give a scholarship to King point guard Imari Sawyer -- who at the time was a badass PG, but was suspect off the court and in the classroom. Kennedy should have given the scholly to a kid from Richards named Dwyane Wade, who actually wanted to come to DePaul.
Sawyer dropped out early in his college career, and Wade is star in the NBA. Who would you rather have as a recruiting tool?
Northwestern, ha! I don't know if they'll ever field a decent basketball team as long as Bill Carmody is running the show for the Wildcats.
The rest of the in-state schools (Bradley, Illinois State, Northern, Western, etc.) get average-to-good players ... but no one as good as a guy like Dillard, or heck, even a guy like Justin Bocot who is waiting in the wings as long as he gets his grades in order.
However, I won't get too excited. I want to see if C-Lo can continue this positive start.
In other news...
- Maybe I should stop this blogging business right now, because down the line I don't want to get fired because of it.
- Tyreke Evans is bad news, I don't care how good of a basketball player he is. Guys like him shouldn't be given a full-ride to college. Hopefully the kid will turn his life around (I doubt it since he'll be under the scumbag known as John Calipari.)