It seems like the Illini nation has been drooling over Simeon’s Jabari Parker since he learned how to walk. It’s too bad a recent tweet indicates we’re already out of the running. He said he would wait a while to make his final decision, but it’s clear from this tweet a couple of hours ago that he’s already cut a few schools from the list.
It’s not like I actually thought he would come to Illinois, because dreams don’t come true for Illini fans. However, I feel like it’s a little early to cut us out when you grew up in the heart of Illini country. Not to mention the fact that deleting Illinois and leaving DePaul on your list is just ridiculous. Just because the Big East is going to be a mess next year doesn’t mean the Blue Demons are going to actually win any games. I understand that Parker will only be at school for a year, but why go someplace where he will have zero exposure?
Of course Kentucky, Kansas, Duke, Georgetown and UNC make sense, because every basketball star has to list those under an unspoken law of the land. And as a devout Mormon I totally get BYU. But Florida? Huh? And considering another Big Ten school – like MSU – is just a direct stab in our orange and blue hearts.
The Chicago-native phenom was on the cover of Sports Illustrated earlier this year, and he’s only just heading into his junior year of high school. He’s been compared to his fellow alumnus Derrick Rose and some claim they haven’t seen a kid this great since a guy named Lebron. Let’s just say this kid is kind of a big deal, so it’s not a huge surprise to get the cold shoulder, just maybe not so early.
Perhaps it’s better to just get this heartbreak out of the way early so we can focus on diamonds in the rough. I can’t blame John Groce, because he’s only been on the job a few months. The other guys have been wining and dining Parker since he’s been in diapers. So if it’s not going to be Illinois, my choice would be for him to head to Georgetown or BYU. I would assume most Illini fans would be of a similar opinion.
Wherever Parker does land, I certainly wish him the best of luck for his one year of college, and then I look forward to seeing him in the NBA. I promise I won’t hold a grudge, I just need a few moments to grieve.