Kelvin Sampson radio show updates

Sampson believes Illinois is good. Really, really good.

Of course, no coach in the country would say anything other than that about a team they have to face.

He’s never been in their building, but he expects it to be full and loud. 


Sampson wants a rule passed that prohibits cameras from being pointed at coaches during the game. He wants all the film to be of the players and fans, because he thinks they’re the most important.

Agreed. But the fans care about coaches. They’re the leaders of the program. 


Kelvin Sampson’s evolution, according to Kelvin Sampson:

“The biggest thing is I’ve recruited better. Don’t ever confuse success with coaching. I’ve learned a long time ago that coaches lose games, coaches win ’em. I’ve never seen a coach who didn’t recruit and coach good players.” 

But Sampson is also careful to point out that sometimes we confuse great athletes with great basketball players. There’s got to be a balance he says.

Sampson thinks he’s doing a better job of finding tough, smart kids who want to be coached.


More talk about the first year at Oklahoma, when Sampson took a team no one was too sure about and had a strong year.

Eventually, he got around to answering an age-old question: how can a school have success in both of the big sports, football and basketball?

He thinks it has to do with the administration, and how it treats the programs. They’ve got to be treated right: have top-rate facilities, bring in good people, etc. 


Kelvin is reminiscing about the day Billy Tubbs resigned from Oklahoma. When his wife heard the news, she said, “They’re going to call you, and that’s going to be the one.”

The Sooners did eventually call, and Sampson did eventually take the job. Up to that point he had wanted to stay at Washington State, where he had his entire team returning. 


Sampson looks at administrators in two ways: facilitators and inhibitors.

Some help the program get better and others try to skimp on the budget.

He credits the folks at Washington state for being facilitators during his years there, where he says he had the chance to learn on the job.


“Some of our kids aren’t naturally hard-nosed and tough. The kids who are have to carry us.”

That’s Sampson discussing how difficult this time of year can be, with so much travel and so many games on the road. 


Sampson believes other teams have figured out Lance Stemler. It took them a while, but now there’s a book on the JUCO transfer.

“He’s not the greatest athlete in the world,” Sampson said.

Stemler didn’t play much against Connecticut because he didn’t matchup well with the rock-solid UConn forward Jeff Adrien. 


Sampson is now talking about his approach to people. He doesn’t like to look at what a person doesn’t do. He wants to look at what they can do.

This is in relation to Rod Wilmont. Don Fischer wanted Sampson to reiterate what he talked about last Thursday. “Fish,” as Sampson calls him, said he didn’t think he’d seen it written about.

Both the Indy Star and The Herald-Times wrote stories on Wilmont the next day.


“Can you imagine getting beat on the boards like that and turning it over? That’s how you get beat by 30.” — Sampson on the Connecticut game


Sampson said his team needs to improve on rebounding coming off the Connecticut game.

He said the Hoosiers aren’t a great team, and that they’ll always have something to work on. Seems pretty reasonable.

He was happy that his team turned the ball over just four times in the second half on the road.


Indiana coach Kelvin Sampson is having a radio show tonight, though it won’t be held at Yogi’s and there won’t be any callers. It’s just him and the announcer because the team is already in Illinois preparing for the game Tuesday.


  1. I think we’re lucky to have an experienced coach who
    also understands kids, instead of dominating them.

    I sure hope security doesn’t let the game at Illinois get
    out of hand in the stands!

  2. I wish all the fans that think like this idiot above would find another sport. Some players who play basketball (outside the Midwest, in particular) don’t understand the work ethic and energy it takes to play basketball at a high level. Some of those players probably had feel-good-politically-correct yuppy parents like you. They come to Indiana with the basic skills but have no guts, no determination, no understanding that it takes hard work to be good, to be the best.

    Some of those players need to be broken down just like a raw military recruit so that they can be molded to perform as the coach wants them to perform, without whining, without questioning, just doing. Before you know it, that little 6’11” whimp stands tall to do battle and instead of being domintated by the coach, he dominates every opponent he faces. He learns how to follow and he learns how to lead.

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