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Bruce Weber thanks Illinois fans in a full-page ad

Apr 8, 2012, 7:38 PM EDT

Bruce Weber AP

The end for Bruce Weber at Illinois wasn’t a pretty one as the Fighting Illini lost 12 of their final 14 games, ultimately resulting in his being let go by the school.

But that didn’t prevent the new Kansas State head coach from reaching out to thank Illinois fans.

Weber took out a full-page ad in Sunday’s Champaign News Gazette, thanking everyone in the Illini Nation for a “memorable nine years.”

Weber, who began his head coach career at Southern Illinois, went 210-101 during his time at Illinois, leading the Fighting Illini to the 2005 national title game.

But he won just two NCAA tournament games after that season and missed the Big Dance in three other seasons, leading to his dismissal and the hiring of John Groce.

Weber taking out the advertisement shows a level of class that many coaches would not display after being relieved of their duties.

Raphielle is also the assistant editor at CollegeHoops.net and can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.

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