CHAMPAIGN ILLINOIS — Less than a month ago, Bruce Weber sat down moments after a home loss and gave a brutally frank accounting of his team's shortcomings and his own.
Weber said he spent the last three years coaching to win immediately, rather than building a program. He failed to build what he called a culture of toughness. And his men's basketball teams lacked leadership.
And now the Illini are looking for a new leader altogether: After nine years of leading the Illini, Weber was fired Friday by first-year athletic director Mike Thomas, who may be able to use that checklist as he hunts for a successor.
Illinois finished the season 17-15 after a Big Ten tournament loss to Iowa on Thursday, a record that includes a 6-12 league record.