Welcome to the disaster area known as Oklahoma Sooner Basketball. We thought the season brought a bunch of turmoil and frustration but we had no idea what was in store for the off-season. Jeff Capel is out on the road recruiting this week and apparently they have open spots to fill on the roster.
Already out the door are Willie Warren and Tommy Mason-Griffin and speculation is that Tiny Gallon isn't too far behind. Gallon has lawyered up and isn't talking but the evidence, right now, points to him taking cash from financial advisor Jeffrey Hausinger (A name will appear again in this post). Now its guard Ray Willis who has announced that he's leaving the team. Willis made an announcement today on his FaceBook page that he's no longer a Sooner. If you're keeping track, that's three guards in about three days to leave the OU basketball program.
Of course none of this is particularly good for Oklahoma's graduation rate. In fact, it down right hurts! Assuming that the Big Three (Gallon, Mason-Griffin, Warren) all leave, that would make 9 out of the 19 players committed to OU since 2006 who have left without graduating. If you're working on the math here, that's about 47% of the players who've come to Oklahoma over the last four years haven't graduated. You'll be hard pressed to find anyone to tell you that's a good thing. More hurtful though is the thought of what guys like Keith Clark, Bobby Maze (`06), Tony Neysmith (`07) and Juan Patillo (`08) could have added to this year's team. They are all guys who transferred out for one reason or another.
Now it seems as if there was a connection between Willie Warren and Tiny Gallon's financial advisor, Jeffrey Hausinger (Told you his name would come back up). TMZ hasn't poped up with any documents showing Warren took money but it has been revealed that Hausinger reached out to Warren also. If Hausinger offered money to Tiny what's to keep us from thinking he didn't do the same with Willie? You know you were thinking it!
The question that everyone wants answered about this ordeal now is, what is the NCAA going to do about all this? Oklahoma is supposed to come off the sanctions that were imposed as a result of the Kelvin Sampson phone calls and, at this point, there's no reason to expect that to change.
The key factor in all of this is the exact role of Hausinger. If it were to turn out that he's an OU booster then the dynamic of this whole situation changes. Suddenly we'd be looking at another Big Red Sports and Imports type scandal and while the university may not have had any knowledge of what was going on they'd still be liable and suffer the consequences as a result of Hausinger's affiliation as a booster. However, it doesn't appear as if that's the case. Its looking more like he's either an agent has ties to one. What that means is that the penalty would be handed down to the players and not the university. The players involved would lose eligibility and at worst the university would have to forfeit the games in which Tiny and anyone else who took money played in. That would mean that a bad season would have gotten even worse. That's something that has already become a reality to OU fans and, as eager as we are to put this season behind us and forget about it, wouldn't really matter by the time the 2010 recruits graduate in four years.