"This is an extremely difficult decision, especially with the
success Bruce Weber had early in his career here at Illinois," said
Mike Thomas, director of athletics. "However, when making decisions
of this magnitude, there are many things that need to be considered,
including the direction of the program in terms of wins and losses,
competitiveness in the Big Ten, and fan support. Bruce has been an
outstanding ambassador for the University of Illinois and we wish
him nothing but the best as he moves on in his career.
Illini fans should expect our basketball team to be a factor in the
Big Ten race and in the national conscience each season. The
tradition is extremely rich here at Illinois. We will begin a
national search immediately to find the very best coach possible for
the University of Illinois."
Weber won outright Big Ten championships in each of his first two
seasons at Illinois and led the Fighting Illini to the national
championship game in 2005 with a 37-2 record in a season when
Illinois was ranked No. 1 in the nation for 18 weeks.
However, following the 2006 season, Illinois compiled a Big Ten
mark of just 50-56 over the last six seasons.
Weber finishes his career at Illinois with a 210-101 (.675)
record and an overall Big Ten record of 89-65 (.578). In addition to
the 2004 and 2005 outright Big Ten titles, Weber's Illini added a
Big Ten tournament championship in 2005. Illinois advanced to the
NCAA tournament six times and to the NIT in 2010 under Weber. The
Illini won at least 20 games in seven of Weber's nine seasons,
including the NCAA-record 37 victories in 2005. The Illini also set
a school record with 19 losses in 2008.
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Weber was named the National and Big Ten Coach of the Year in
2005, and he also earned the 2007 Coaches vs. Cancer Champion Award
for his involvement with that organization.
Weber has three years remaining on his current contract and will
be paid $1.3 million annually. The removal is effective immediately
and Weber will not coach any games that Illinois should play in the
(See Weber's career record at Illinois.)
[Text from file received from the
University of Illinois]