Is Derrick Rose Reconsidering Illinois?
Posted by sportsmaven on March 24, 2007
With Tubby Smith leaving Kentucky to coach the Minnesota Gophers basketball team, there is speculation regarding the Kentucky coaching job. Latest rumors have it that John Calipari is a leading candidate for the job. If that’s the case, Derrick Rose may very well reconsider his committment to Memphis.
(Tribune photo by Nuccio DiNuzzo)
According to the Chicago Sun-Times, that certainly is a reality. Michael O’Brien wrote a very interesting post in yesterday’s High School Confidential blog in the Sun-Times. He states:
Tubby Smith’s resignation at Kentucky could have a significant effect on Rose’s future. Memphis coach John Calipari is considered one of the top candidates for the Kentucky job. Rose signed a National Letter of Intent with Memphis in November. He could ask to be released from his letter of intent if Calipari leaves, but those requests aren’t always granted.
It’s too early to speculate about which schools would be in the running for Rose if Calipari left Memphis, but Reggie Rose did let something slip. ‘
‘We may have to get back on the highway and head down to Champaign,’’ Rose said.
Now if this is truly the case, this would be a MAJOR coup for Bruce Weber and the Illini. Derrick Rose would make up for losing Eric Gordon. He would provide instant offense, suffocating defense, would be the one person on the Illini team that teams would fear. Opposing coaches would gameplan for Derrick Rose. With SG Quentin Watkins, PG Demetri McCamey from St. Joseph’s and PF Bill Cole from Peoria Richwoods, the Illini would have a very solid core entering next season. McCamey could compete for time at the point with Chester Frazier. A McCamey/Frazier/Rose backcourt would be very strong and would kick the Illini up a notch. If Greg Oden/Mike Conley leave Ohio St. after this season and Wisconsin taking a hit losing star players Alando Tucker and Kammron Taylor, the Big Ten would be wide open. Illinois could find itself competing for top conference honors once again.
It’s a nice thought, but many dominoes have to fall in place before Derrick Rose ends up in Champaign, but crazier things have happened….