Upcoming Games:
Tues, Feb. 19th
Purdue 68 Indiana 77
Northwestern 51 Iowa 53
Wed, Feb. 20th
Penn St 49 Michigan St 86
Wisconsin 71 Illinois 57
Thur, Feb. 21st
9:00-Michigan at Minnesota ESPN

Looking for the best website for Kentucky Derby betting? BroburySports.com has it all, featuring a complete horse racebook. Additionally, horse racing fans can come back to BroburySports.com for all their Preakness Stakes betting needs, including the latest Triple Crown odds and picks.

There's always something going on in the football betting world, so have a look at Bet-on-the-NFL.com to read the latest news and game results. Hardcore fans of pro football will love the great NFL betting articles and free odds offered at Sportsbetting3.com. If you're a fan of the ponies, you should also look at SB3's online horse betting page, with information and reviews of several top racebooks. Like to play roulette or craps? Visit JaxCasinos.com, the web's premier online casinos site, with over 24 different online gaming sites reviewed.

BroburySports.com is the web's leader in sports betting, offering straight bets, parlays, teasers, and more. Best of all, Brobury has great basketball betting alternatives, with very convenient deposit options.

Big 10 FB Bowl Results


Add to Technorati Favorites
Big Ten Conference news, results, opinions, commentary and more! Covers all Big Ten athletics with an emphasis on college football and college basketball.

Powered by Blogger
Sports Blogs - Blog Top Sites

Subscribe to
Posts [Atom]

Who links to my website?

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Where are they now? Deon Thomas

Deon Thomas played forward for the Illinois Fighting Illini from 1990 to 1994. Thomas finished his career as the all-time leading scorer in Illinois history with 2,129 career points, averaging 18.0 points per game. He is the only player in Illini history to score 2,000 career points.

Despite his illustrious career, Deon Thomas is probably still most remembered for the recruiting scandal that surrounded him prior to enrolling at Illinois. Thomas played high school basketball for Simeon High School in Chicago and was regarded as one of the top prospects in the nation. He was recruited by a number of teams including Illinois and Iowa. Bruce Pearl, then assistant coach at Iowa, recorded a telephone conversation between him and Thomas in which Deon allegedly admitted to have been offered a Chevy Blazer and cash from Illinois' assistant Jimmy Collins. Pearl turned the recording in to the NCAA along with a memo describing his recollection of the events.

Deon Thomas denied having received and/or being offered any such benefits from Illinois, and no proof of any improper offers were ever found. The NCAA never formally charged Thomas with any wrongdoing, but the resulting investigation did uncover other violations committed by Illinois. Ultimately the NCAA cited Illinois for lack of institutional control and implemented a one year postseason ban as well as several recruiting restrictions.

Still to this day Deon Thomas denies any wrongdoing, swears that he never received anything from Illinois and has yet to forgive Bruce Pearl, now head coach at Tennessee, for his involvement in the scandal. He still contends the decision to play for Illinois was made due to his relationship with his grandmother and her proximity to Champaign.

After his college career, Thomas was selected with the 28th pick in the 1994 NBA Draft by the Dallas Mavericks. He attended mini camp but never actually played in a regular season NBA game. He instead opted to play professional basketball in Europe. Thomas has had a very successful professional career playing for teams in Spain, Israel and Bulgaria.

Deon Thomas is currently playing in the Israel National League for Maccabi Haifa. Thomas has played in 14 games this season and is averaging 10.1 points and 6.2 rebounds per game. His team is 7-8 on the season and sitting in 7th place out of 14 teams in the league.

Comments on "Where are they now? Deon Thomas"


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (January 31, 2008 at 5:22 PM) : 

Yeah right, he didn't take a dime....He just made it up, when he said it in his own words on the taped coversation. He was looking for more money end of story....


Blogger Brad said ... (January 31, 2008 at 6:05 PM) : 

Hard to say. Obviously the tape says one thing, but on the other hand the NCAA (with that tape as evidence) still found nothing that was given to him. I don't think anyone but those involved will ever know.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (January 31, 2008 at 7:49 PM) : 

People that make anonymous posts like the original are cowards. If he took money, why wasn't he charged? Why was Bruce Pearl's name never mentioned in the NCAA's report? Why was there not a shred of evidence of such wrongdoing ever found?

Because Pearl is a lying scumbag cheat. Thomas' grandmother even admitted that Iowa was the team that offered money to her. Have you heard the tape? Then shut up.


Blogger thomasfam25 said ... (October 15, 2008 at 5:34 AM) : 

Anonymous u can kiss my u know what. Deon is my older brother and I can tell you it was Iowa who offered not Illinois. Bruce Pearl is a liar and he was angry because my brother went to Illinois not Iowa so he lied.. I was there when Pearl called I heard my brother responses. Bruce Pearl is a scumbag and so are you anonymous


Blogger Jay Alt said ... (November 23, 2008 at 2:47 PM) : 

Thomas was provided an attorney, who became frustrated when the NCAA refused to tell him what was on the tape. Meanwhile, Thomas was under enormous pressure to confess (& transfer to Iowa). Despite that, he remained adamant that nothing but a scholarship had been offered.

After about a year, the defense got to listen to the tape. When Thomas heard it, he told his lawyer part of the conversation was missing. The lawyer subpoened Pearl's phone records from Iowa (they paid long-distance bills from his office and a recruiting line at home). The attorney identified the call and compared the phone company records to the tape. The tape was X minutes long but strangely, the phone bill was for X + ~4 minutes. This was despite the fact the tape copy contained the phone ringing, Pearl saying hello, then goodbye and the hangup click. Pearl also told the NCAA the tape was the complete conversation made without any pauses or breaks in the recording.

The defense also noticed some odd clicks. They now suspected it had been edited. They knew Pearl hadn't given the NCAA the original tape, but a copy.

So Thomas' lawyers suggested NCAA investigators ask Pearl to provide the original tape, (w/o telling him it was IL that requested it). The original would then be send to an FBI-type lab for analysis. By this time, the case had boiled down to Pearl's word against Thomas. This way Pearl could strengthen his case and prove his honesty.

But rather than improve his credibility (it was in v. poor shape nationally by then), Pearl told them he wanted to keep the original for 'sentimental reasons.' NCAA investigators had the authority (and duty) to demand it as evidence. But they chose not to do that.

This is one example of how the NCAA investigation was stymied by investigator egos and maintaining their perfect conviction rate, rather than finding out who had told the truth.

Now, I've seen the transcript of the copy tape. It was part of the response to charges that Thomas filed with the NCAA. Pearl did almost all the talking, and Thomas's response was mostly 'uh-huh', or 'yeah.' The NCAA Committee that reviewed the evidence didn't find him guilty, so perhaps people should give Deon a break. And they only need to establish a 51% certainty, not the toughter standard of 'beyond reasonable doubt.'

The case revealed (to IL fans at least) that Bruce Pearl had a history of bending (if not breaking) recruiting rules. For example, Thomas was befriended by Simeon HS junior Alonzo Kyles his senior year. Kyles had just gotten a car, which he then used to drive Thomas back and forth to school and practice. It saved Thomas alot of time riding and transferring on several city buses.

Thomas decided to pass on his official visit to Iowa, so Bruce Pearl sent the Iowa private jet to Chicago and Kyles took the trip for him! Kyles met all the members of the team, went to parties with them and a football game. Then he was flown back to Chicago to tell Deon what a fabulous time it had all been. Pretty pathetic. Kyles also boasted to friends in Chicago that Pearl had offered him a scholarship (team manager) if Thomas picked Iowa. So IL fans suspected Kyles was paid for this recruiting, and probably for the car he acquired at the same time.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (March 18, 2009 at 11:29 PM) : 



Anonymous Dale said ... (June 26, 2009 at 10:06 AM) : 

Lewis and Clark Community College in Godfrey, Illinois has announced that Deon Thomas, will head the men's basketball team and assume the role of athletic director for the college.

Source: The Telegraph


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (September 14, 2010 at 7:24 PM) : 

destined for fame my ass, he couldnt even play a single game in the nba. He took the money to play on the shitty illini


post a comment