Gordon says drug use was problem at IU

Updated: December 18, 2008, 2:26 AM ET
Associated Press

INDIANAPOLIS -- Former Indiana standout Eric Gordon believes drug use caused a rift on last season's Hoosiers, according to a story posted on The Indianapolis Star's Web site Wednesday night.

Gordon declined to identify which players allegedly used drugs, but said D.J. White and two others still on the team were among those who did not.

"It was the guys that were doing drugs that were separate," Gordon told the newspaper.

Gordon, who left after his freshman season and now starts for the Los Angeles Clippers, said some players' drug use led to friction on the team. Gordon said he spent time with a family friend in Bloomington because of the atmosphere surrounding some players.

Then-coach Kelvin Sampson tried to stop the drug use, Gordon said, but Sampson "was just so focused on basketball and winning and everything."

"Sometimes it felt like it wasn't even a real basketball team because of all the turmoil that went on," Gordon said.

Former Indiana guard Adam Ahlfeld said players were aware of the drug problem.

"I wasn't really with those abusing drugs, so I can't say what was really going on," Ahlfeld told the newspaper. "I wasn't involved in any of those things."

Indiana athletic department spokesman J.D. Campbell declined to comment on the story Wednesday night.

"It would be inappropriate for us to have any comment on that," he said.

Current coach Tom Crean also declined to discuss the drug issue, citing privacy laws.

"We're doing our best to move ahead from a very difficult time for Indiana basketball and focus on doing that in the best light we can," Crean told The Indianapolis Star.

Indiana started 17-1 last season, but things began spiraling out of control as allegations surfaced about a recruiting scandal involving Sampson. The Hoosiers lost their first game of the Big Ten tournament and were eliminated in the first round of the NCAA tournament.

The school bought out Sampson's contract in February. Last month, the NCAA put Indiana on three years' probation for recruiting violations.


Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press