Weber doesn't deny report of 1 AD meeting

April, 3, 2012
4/03/12
12:29
PM CT
Former Illinois coach Bruce Weber didn't deny a report that Illini athletic director Mike Thomas never met with Weber one-on-one until he fired him.

[+] EnlargeBruce Weber
Brian Spurlock/US PresswireBruce Weber didn't stay unemployed for long, taking over as Kansas State coach on Saturday.
Citing sources, Comcast SportsNet's David Kaplan tweeted last week that Thomas, who was hired in August, didn't meet individually with Weber until he told him he was being fired March 9 after nine seasons at Illinois.

Weber, who was hired Saturday as Kansas State's coach, said he has moved on when asked about the report.

"I don't think I need to get into that," Weber said Tuesday on "The Waddle & Silvy Show" on ESPN 1000. "Illinois has a new coach, and Mike Thomas is the athletic director. I'm at K-State with a purple tie on right now. There's no sense to go into that. Obviously it was a tough finish. I love my nine years at Illinois. I did a lot of things that no other coach has done there.

"I will always be proud of the 37 wins and national championship [game], the two outright Big Ten championships, the only two in 60 years. I think if you go back, it's probably the best nine-year run in the history of the school or at least close."

Asked whether people should read into his comments that the report is true, Weber said: "That's up to you. You've got to figure it out. I love my guys at Illinois, I hope they have great success, and we're just going to worry about K-State."

Thomas, who hired former Ohio University coach John Groce to succeed Weber on Thursday, denied the report.

"Oh boy. Once again, I don't know where that came from," Thomas said Thursday on "Carmen, Jurko & Harry" on ESPN 1000. "I've had several isolated discussions with Bruce. I can tell you we're both busy but probably most of those were initiated by me. To say that was the only time I met with Bruce is a surprise and absolutely not true. I pride myself on having great relationship with all my coaches, and it is important that you develop and grow those relationships over time."

Weber led the Illini to the 2005 NCAA title game, in which they lost to North Carolina. He finished 210-101 at Illinois, trailing only Lou Henson and Harry Combes in wins at the school.

But the Illini were just 55-66 in the Big Ten the past six seasons, including 6-12 this season and closing this season losing 12 of their final 14 games.


Former Illinois coach Bruce Weber joined "Waddle & Silvy" to discuss his exit from the school, Meyers Leonard opting for the NBA draft and more.

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