June 29, 2006
In-state recruiting igniting rivalries
The news that 6-foot-10 Indianapolis Franklin Central prospect JaJuan
Johnson had committed to Purdue sent the fan forums into some knock-down,
drag-em-out battles between Hoosier and Boiler fans. You always see a bit
of that but nothing like the last few days. Johnson is not a top 25 or
even top 50 player (he's No. 85), but the "flaming" posts were rampant.
The interesting thing was the reactions of some fans to all the fighting ---
they like it. To many Hoosier fans, the Purdue and other Big Ten rivalries
have not been what they used to be.
The Johnson verbal set off Indiana fans for a few reasons. First off he had been recently offered by Indiana. Second, Johnson hinted that there would be more Purdue commitments coming from some of those top 100 in-state prospects. Third, the Indiana fans are wounded. For the last three
years they have watched some incredible talent from this state say no to Indiana
University. Finally, there were many with hopes that a new staff could
immediately change that third fact.
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