This week I've started a little haterade mini series, and it's been pretty well received. (Side note: thanks for the bump yesterday TMill.) I had a good friend suggest that I ease up on our Hoosier brethren, I've been pretty rough on them with all my hate. I thought about it, and decided that with football signing day upon us, they already have to watch their football program circle the drain, maybe I'll be nice. (Who am I kidding, you'd have to have a program to begin with to circle the drain. Theirs has been in the sewer for quite some time) So, I've decided to heap some love on the most beloved Indiana coach of all time. Of course I speak of none other than the living legend, Kelvin Sampson.
We here at Purdue love Mr. Sampson. He's a stand up guy, and did wonders for the IU basketball program. His contribution to our superiority in this heralded rivalry is unmatched. No coach for either school has ever done as much to help Purdue dominate IU as Mr. Sampson.
What's not to love about the man? He's all about winning! He's not going to let silly things like NCAA rules or rampant drug abuse by members of his team slow him down! What's important is getting the W. Don't take him for some cold, uncaring coach though. Heck, he made between 550 and 600 extra calls to recruits! That's a man who cares about the young players he wants to come play for him! I mean, it's not like he was trying to get in extra time to sell his school to these young men. That would be cheating, and a man of superior character like Mr. Sampson would never stoop so low. He was simply checking on their day to day lives, making sure they were keeping their grades up, and giving them attaboys for hard work. Definitely NOT offering free and unlimited access to illegal drugs, cash, and a plethora of young collegiate whores. Definitely not.
Going hand in hand with his sterling character is his commitment to see players happy. Just take Eric Gordon for example. He was just cruising along, already committed to Illinois, not realizing how terribly unhappy he would be there for his one collegiate year. Was Sampson going to just sit around and let Eric walk right into misery? Hell no! He got on the phone with a recruit that was already committed and convinced him to decommit, and then commit to Indiana. Now that's a coach who puts ethics first. He just couldn't stand to let Eric make such a terrible mistake! He didn't stop there though. After players got to IU, he made sure they stayed happy. See these team photos:
Look at the comradery on display here! Everyone is having a great time! The job of the student athlete is to win games and have a great time while doing it right? What did you say? Academics? That's a really big word, these guys have no idea what that means.
Critics try to say that Sampson is a cheater, a liar, and that he ran IU's program into the ground. These things are simply not true. He simply cared too much. And those players that left? I'm sure they were going to leave anyway, right? Yeah, probably. Well, maybe. I'll get back to you on that one.
It's not just Purdue fans that love him though, IU fans love him too. So many IU fans are excited about "The Movement", well there wouldn't be any need for "The Movement" without Mr. Sampson's leadership would there? So all those Sampson haters can stick that in your pipe and smoke it! Would beating #1 ranked Kentucky this year have been such a monumental accomplishment without the last 3 years? I think not, and you have Mr. Sampson to thank for that. I'm sure he sends a hearty "you're welcome".
Last but not least, we can't forget his contribution to the Big Ten as a whole. I mean, thanks directly to Mr. Sampson, other Big Ten teams earned 46 conference wins against IU that they might otherwise have had to work for, or maybe not even won at all. That's generosity on a grand scale folks. I'm sure I represent the voices of all Big Ten fans when I say thank you sincerely Mr. Sampson for our virtually uncontested wins against the team you
destroyed helped to build.
Sampson coached the right way. He came in, earned some quality wins, and taught young men valuable life lessons about substance abuse, sportsmanship, and integrity. He didn't hang around to accumulate that God-awful 371 loss total like that one terrible IU coach. He quit while he was ahead with a scant 271 losses, a full 100 less than "The General". Need more proof? In his tenure at IU, Sampson posted a 74.13 win percentage, to Mr. Knight's lowly 73.5%. I know charlespig will check my stats, trust me they're valid. All these things together make Kelvin Sampson, in my opinion, the greatest IU coach ever.
As always, now it's your turn, show some Boilermaker lovin' to Mr. Sampson.