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Did you know that during his scandalous tenure at the University of Oklahoma, Kelvin Sampson-- who just got canned as Indiana University's men's basketball coach for having a telephone addiction so bad he couldn't stop himself from making impermissable phone calls to recruits even though he'd already been busted for doing so-- instituted the Sooner Reading Program? Yeah, that's the one "where OU players and staff visited every elementary school in the Norman area to communicate the importance of reading." You can look it up right on his official website, where he brags about it.

I was so inspired when I saw this example of community service that I took it upon myself to hyperlink over to my copy of the NCAA's Guide for the College-Bound Student-Athlete to see if it contained anything written at the elementary school level. And lo and behold there it was, right in a nifty little table called Summary of Recruiting Rules for Each Sport! Yup, smack dab in the section labeled "telephone calls." Here's what it says, word for word:

  • "Sophomore year: College coach cannot call you."

  • Junior year: College coaches may call you once per month beginning June 15, before your junior year, through July 31 after your junior year."

  • "Senior year: College coaches may call you twice per week beginning August 1."

 

Any questions? Yeah, neither did my kid.

Maybe you think this rule is ridiculous, but isn't it even more ridiculous that Sampson would put his university and his program in jeopardy by violating it 577 times between 2000 and 2004? Does it not boggle your mind that he was actually the president of the National Association of Basketball Coaches during part of that period?

What was IU thinking when they hired a guy with this kind resumé? Okay, okay, we know what they were thinking. But let's be fair and give them props for learning, from their drawn out affair with Bob Knight, how to recognize an incorrigible sooner (no pun intended) rather than later.

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