A current member of the Homewood-Flossmoor (Ill.) High girls' basketball team is suing the school, claiming her new coach recruited six players this past summer -- five of whom are now starting for the top-ranked Vikings, according to multiple reports out of Chicago.
After winning four state titles in 12 years at Bolingbrook (Ill.) High, Anthony Smith took over the Homewood-Flossmoor program this season. Midway through his first year at the helm of the Vikings, he's now the subject of a lawsuit claiming he violated Illinois High School Association rules, according to both the Chicago Sun-Times and Chicago Tribune.
The lawsuit, brought forward by the parent of an anonymous player on the roster, alleges Smith convinced four of his former Bolingbrook standouts and two more players -- from Plainfield (Ill.) East and Chicago (Ill.) Marist high schools -- to enroll at Homewood-Flossmoor, even allegedly holding practices with the six girls prior to their enrollment.
Five transfers are now starting for the Vikings (13-2), currently ranked No. 1 in the state by the Chicago Tribune. The suit contends Smith's actions "demoralized" existing players, their families and the entire community. Smith refuted the allegations, including his alleged promises of starting positions and potential college scholarships for the transfers.
“That is not true, that is definitely not true,” Smith told the Chicago Sun-Times. “That’s something that I’m not thinking about or not worrying about because that’s just not true.”
Homewood-Flossmoor Community High School District 233, named as the focus of the lawsuit, reportedly determined all six transfers lived within the school zone and ultimately ruled them eligible, and the IHSA did not launch an investigation as a result.