A vision for the department is a good thing. And MT's vision had an internal logic to it and is basically what a lot of different stakeholders have advocated for. And an AD should target coaches who they feel are a fit.Never heard this before...very interesting and maddening.
It seems really stupid to set these parameters for coaches and shows a complete lack of appreciation for the history of Illinois athletics. We have never dominated the state of Illinois recruiting and never will. It's been good enough in basketball to get some of the best players. Our best football teams have always had a fair amount of out of state talent and at times we've been competitive for good players in state (occasionally landing a great player like Martin O'Donnell, Rashard Mendenhall, Juice, Martez Wilson).
I never believed money was the problem with Thomas' coaching hires. It had to be more than that and you're confirming it. The very idea that Beckman had a remote chance of making Illinois the destination school for Illinois kids is a farce. I still believe Groce can land some of the best Illinois kids if he can improve the product on the court.
I just think it's an interesting thing to note in retrospect. I heard from someone who would know that Brad Stevens had some degree of interest in Illinois (the idea at the time was that he would never ever leave Butler - oops), but through his conversations with MT, he realized they didn't see eye-to-eye on the big picture vision for the program. Do I believe in my heart of hearts that a different AD would have landed Stevens? I kinda don't. But who knows.