Thoughts on Zeller?

Many of you are still probably pretty upset with the Tyler Zeller decision.

He’s an Indiana kid, you’ll say, and players from a state that appreciates basketball like Indiana does should pursue their college career within our borders.

You’ll say that the Mike Davis era is over, and with Eric Gordon’s commitment to IU and Purdue picking up the likes of E’twaun Moore, Robbie Hummell and JaJuan Johnson, the best homegrown players are staying home to play their college ball.

But Zeller’s decision throws everything off. The best player out of Indiana in the ’08 class, Zeller left three Indiana schools (IU, Purdue and Notre Dame) in a tie for second. But in reality, I think everyone knows it was a two-school race between UNC and Indiana, with Purdue making a late charge. Notre Dame, despite having Tyler’s brother Luke, never really had a shot.

But then Kelvin Sampson got in trouble with the NCAA again, and the entire situation changed. All of a sudden, a dark cloud hovered over the IU program and mainly, Sampson. Columnists took their fair share of shots at the Hoosier head coach, and the once-good name of the program took another major hit.

So, my question to all of you is: How much of a factor did Sampson’s recent transgressions play in Zeller’s decision? Tyler and his father said at the press conference Monday that it didn’t play a major role, because they wanted to look at the bigger picture.

I don’t buy that. I think everything that’s transpired in the last month played a big part in what the Zeller family talked about when they sat down with Tyler’s high school coach, Gene Miller, to discuss his decision. How could it not have? You don’t want to send your son to a school that’s possibly going to be hit hard by NCAA sanctions in the coming months. And you probably don’t want to send your son to play for a team that has a head coach that’s going to hear chants of “Cheater!” every road game.

I think it’s a toss-up between UNC and IU without the recent controversy. But that’s just my opinion. I’m anxious to hear all of your thoughts.


  1. I’m sure it all played a part, no doubt. But the kid is gone, and honestly I think everyone is over it. Let’s get Kevin Jones now!

  2. Tyler made the decision he thought was in his best interest. He always said that the players on the team were the most important to him and he said that he got along best with UNC players. enough said.

    We will have a stud class in ’09 – this mild storm will blow over.

  3. I have moved on with the Zeller decision – he would have been a great Hoosier, but I like the class we have coming in without him!

  4. I think that it was a huge part of it. What kid would want to come to a university that screw him out of a chance to reach a dream? So, he comes here next year and they run the table, but over the summer, IU is told no post season play…..well then he is screwed. Not to take anything away from UNC as they have a great program with as much history as IU, but there is no black cloud hovering over them.

  5. This is not a criticism of Zeller. It is a question that came to me this morning while reading the Chicago Trbune. Valparaiso has Bryan Bouchie, 6′ 10″ on it’s roster. He is listed as a freshman. So, curiosity got to me. Did Bouchie play with Zeller? I don’t know. I also checked last years state tournament. If I did the search correctly, then Washington did not make it out of the regionals. That’s a lot of height for southwestern Indiana, anywhere really. I am almost 60 years old. I have seen a lot of big guys come and go. It’s interesting. Did anyone see that team play?
    I wish Zeller all the best. But as an IU alum, it’s time to move on,

  6. Your question to us (How much of a factor were the transgressions) can only be answered by the Zeller family and they have done that. Why on earth would you solicit further speculation from the masses on something that they cannot possibly have any insight on?

  7. Anyone remember Luke Zeller?? Indiana Mr. Basketball. Legendary for hitting that crazy buzer beater to win the state championship his senior year. Now playing for the Fighting Irish and averaging about 3 ppg for his career so far… Maybe Tyler’s better than his brother, but i’d rather have a ridiculous athlete like Kevin Jones over a potential flop like Zeller any day. He’ll probably ride the bench for UNC. His body is not ready for the ACC.

  8. I agree that he would have gone to IU if not for the calls.

    But I’m a little disappointed to still be reading about this here when Demling has an interview with Kevin Jones saying IU is still on his list.

    I thought you guys were called the “Scoop”…………not “Let’s Whine About a Lost Recruit Two Days After the Fact.”

    He’s gone. We’ve lost great in-state recruits before. According to some, and this was way before the decision (so it isn’t sour grapes), he’s over-rated anyway.

    Give us an interview with Jones and move on.

    Or get us a Scoop on any JUCOs we might be looking at.

  9. I honestly don’t believe it played any part in his decision. Having seen both Luke and Tyler play in high school, Luke was the better player, in my eye’s. I said it back in September when Tyler was making his “official visit” to IU that he would go to UNC. The ACC has been a more consitent and better b-ball conference than the Big Ten, and I believe that had to weigh in that he would be playing better competition week in, week out. I still don’t think he is as good as people thinks he will be, and here he would have been pushed into playing in the post, a position I don’t feel he will be good at.

  10. Most everyone of the comments have the same message. As
    fans we want the media to move on and get over it. Start commenting about the great team we have now and quit
    being a cry baby!!

  11. Luke didn’t come because of Davis, Tyler didn’t come because of Sampson…give me a break, don’t even think about recruiting his little brother. I agree with everyone else, stop harping on this kid to stir the pot. Why is it I get more hoosier scoops reading a blog from some guy in new jersey?

  12. Who cares at this point? He chose a very good school, who w/o the talk of possible sanctions, is probably better suited to win a NC at this point anyways. Trying to blame Sampson for Zeller going someplace else does exactly ZERO good at this point. He’s one recruit. Not the end of the world. How about focusing on the team that is already here, ranked #9 in the country and just won their exhibition game by about 50. All you are doing is bringing the program down even more by dragging this crap on. It’s not like the team and Sampson aren’t being punished….let it go.

  13. Oh no! A seventeen year old basketball player didn’t pick our school! Commence sending hate mail, burning effigies, and issuing death threats immediately!

    Really way too much is made about recruiting, in the end kids just go where they want to, end of story. The only part of recruiting I find interesting is trying to determine how good kids that have already committed will be when they arrive. Before they commit, you’re just wasting your breath.

    Illinois sucks.

    So do Purdue and Kentucky.

  14. Any insight from anyone on the accusations that UNC may have violated recruiting rules? It’s been kept pretty quiet, but Bloomington’s own Sean May was involved- inappropriate contact with a potential recruit. I guess the whole thing is a real toss-up as to if it was in fact a violation, but I think it’s interesting, given the core question to this thread. (UNC says it wasn’t a violation because they “didn’t know” the rule. It’s BS, if you ask me, but given our current situation, we don’t really have a leg to stand on! More details can be found by googling UNC recruiting violation and at this link.

  15. Megan, IMHO there is no violation based on the report. The fact that they did not know about the rule is no defense, but because what was said was incidental UNC has nothing to fear from NCAA.

  16. slojoe – I agree the NCAA will probably not do anything in this situation, but read this.

    “Shumpert played pick-up basketball games with former Heels Sean May, Marvin Williams and Raymond Felton which might constitute the minor infraction. Shumpert also indicated to the paper that all three talked to him extensively about coming to UNC and how it had helped them with their NBA careers”

    The Charlotte Observer leaves out Raymond Felton’s name. Since he is a former player, and no longer enrolled at UNC, that is a direct violation of the rule. Since Sean May and Marvin Williams according to the recruit spoke “extensively about coming to UNC and how it helped them with their NBA careers” and they are no longer full time students, that is a direct violation of the rules. Rather they knew the rule or not. Ignorance is no excuse for the law.

  17. “Oh no! A seventeen year old basketball player didn’t pick our school! Commence sending hate mail, burning effigies, and issuing death threats immediately!”

    Seriously who cares anymore, he made the best choice in his eyes… and why has he gotten more coverage than any other Indiana Jr. All-Star at this point… Because he turned his recruiting adventure into a political stunt?

  18. Are you guys claiming some kind of victory here as a media source?

    It seems the negative, anti CKS media is very pleased with itself. And really offended that the Zellers gave them no credit.

    I for one think TZ chose UNC and would have anyway because of his style of play and relationship with RW. I don’t think they are lying. Maybe we should do an Ice report to see if they are?

    Let it go. Quit tryin to run CKS out of town, it failed this time around.

    IU has always IMO for some reason had trouble recruiting the big men. We have had a few, but many just don’t pick IU. Maybe this is still in the air for some reason. IU is not bigman U. We need to change that perception. DJ White this year with press and good play….and when he goes lotto will help that a whole lot.

  19. I’m not that down about the Zeller decision, mainly because he chose a great school like UNC over IU instead of a big in state rival like Purdue or ND. Also, I just don’t feel like he’s a program changing player. Ebanks will have a bigger impact here than Zeller will at UNC most likely. That said, he would have been a very nice 4 year player that will improve each year and be a factor down the line. Overall, I think IU will be fine.

  20. Also an add on since I don’t think I can edit.

    I only see 2 schools where CKS gets a rough time. Illannoy and Purdue. Not buyin that the hate for him is as bad elswhere as it is here in Indiana by some. Can’t get over RMK, MD, or not gettin the coach they wanted at IU…. be it Alford, any IU guy, or whoever.

  21. ..the kid has an ACC build..and will wish him well..we need bigten/11 builds in order to remain viable in our league..i do wonder how muchtalent this kid has..or is he a project..seems like his bro..lacks a skill this may not be a major loss..time will doubt..

  22. tyler only knows why he decided to go to UNC the speculation is bull++++++++and BY the way ..UNC was just investigated by the NCAA 3 weeks ago ..gimme a break

  23. terry i think the possibility that he gets few minutes at UNC is very possible and more than likely…Too bad ..i hope he gets play time but every year more 4’s and 5’s pick UNC
    and that frail body i see in the pix’s ..won’t stand a chance in the ACC

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