CARBONDALE, IL -
The rant heard round the world from Southern Illinois Basketball Coach Barry Hinson is now six months old, but he still gets asked about it frequently.
"Oh my gosh, wherever we go," admitted Coach Hinson. "And I go back, and I apologize for the one thing that I said about the certain individual, but I stick with my guns, I will not apologize about anything else."
In the immediate aftermath, people weren't sure if the rant would help the team or backfire. Now that the season is well over, there's a general consensus among fans and players.
"It seems like it worked," said Saluki Basketball fan Britt Pavelonis. "It lit a fire under them, so I think so."
"I know there was a vast improvement from where they were before that rant," said SIU alum Gabe Angelly. "It helped motivate, you can't ever say that one exact thing is what turned the season around, but I think that definitely helped."
"He gets onto us, and it makes us work harder for things," said Saluki guard Tyler Smithpeters. "I mean yeah, it helped."
And there are stats that back it up. Southern Illinois was 2-8 before the rant, and finished the season with a 12-11 record afterwards. And publicity from the rant has helped recruiting as well.
"I know for a fact that we signed three players because of it," Hinson said. "Because their mothers and fathers said we want our son to play for a guy like you."
Before the season, the Salukis were picked to finish eighth in the Missouri Valley, they ended up fourth, a year after they finished tenth in the Valley.
Follow WPSD Sports on Facebook by clicking here. Follow WPSD Sports on Twitter by clicking here.
100 Television Lane
Paducah, KY 42003