Blog Entry

This is how it's forever going to be, UK fans

Posted on: December 18, 2009 6:22 am
Edited on: December 18, 2009 10:19 am

Bob Knight spoke at a fundraiser Thursday night.

Predictably, he managed to make national headlines.

"We've gotten into this situation where integrity is really lacking and that's why I'm glad I'm not coaching," Knight said. "You see we've got a coach at Kentucky who put two schools on probation and he's still coaching. I really don't understand that."

This is the place where Kentucky fans would like me to tell you that John Calipari has never been directly implicated in anything, and the place where fans of every other school, particularly Memphis fans, would like me to tell you that Knight speaks the truth, and God bless him. But I'm not interested in sparking that debate because the Calipari debate has been going on for months, if not years, and it never reaches a conclusion.

If he coaches your school, you love him.

If not, you think he's a lying cheater.

There's almost no in-between.

And this is how it's going to be forever, UK fans, and why it was clear -- even before Knight said what he said -- that any success Calipari has going forward will be tainted regardless of whether it's really tainted. Until the day he retires, the majority of observers will believe, fair or not, that every recruit Calipari gets is a product of his relationship with William Wesley even if Worldwide Wes has never met the recruit. All SATs will be assumed fake even if they're legit, all future pros will supposedly have agents even if they do not.

There's no sense in fighting that perception.

There's certainly no way of changing that perception.

On Thursday night, it was Bob Knight taking a shot at Calipari.

In March during the NCAA tournament, it'll be every columnist in America.

That's what the $30 million Kentucky spent on Calipari has brought the school -- a coach who will lure lots of great recruits, win countless big games, and hang banners while people ask whether Kentucky really expects those banners to remain after an inevitable NCAA investigation. Then Kentucky fans will yell about how Calipari wasn't tied to anything. Then everybody will roll their eyes and laugh. And around and around we go.
Category: NCAAB

Since: Nov 22, 2009
Posted on: December 18, 2009 11:54 am

This is how it's forever going to be, UK fans

While I am very nervous as a UK fan, and actually was against them hiring Calipari I now just hope that nothing comes up, and if it does oh well I'll enjoy being at the top for awhile.  And by the The Ville 3, honestly with the Mastercard joke?  I mean seriously when are these things going to stop...  It's time to find something new I think.

Since: Nov 19, 2007
Posted on: December 18, 2009 11:53 am

Come On With It

I can't speak for other UK fans, but I have no problem with any of this.  All of the name-calling at Cal, the whining about WWW, the one-and-dones at UK.  What, am I supposed to beg other people to please respect my coach and my team?  I couldn't care less what anyone else thinks about UK's program.  If it makes people feel good to trash UK, I say go ahead.  It doesn't bother me, and it makes them feel better, so I guess it's a win-win situation. 

All I'm concerned about is getting a win against Austin Peay this Saturday and moving to 11-0 and the #2 ranking in the country.  I'm assuming of course that UNC will beat Texas, which I think will happen.

Since: Nov 23, 2009
Posted on: December 18, 2009 11:51 am

This is how it's forever going to be, UK fans

I'll give UK credit, they keep up with inflation in their cheating ways.

The $100 handshake from the 1970s is now worth thousands.

Since: May 25, 2009
Posted on: December 18, 2009 11:31 am

This is how it's forever going to be, UK fans

Beating UNC, UConn, and Indiana, great programs but all of them are in down years, so not really priceless. UNC and UConn lost alot of scoring to the NBA, UK just beat names, but I feel what you are saying.

Since: Dec 2, 2009
Posted on: December 18, 2009 11:00 am

This is how it's forever going to be, UK fans

See thats where your wrong fylm, many people have no interest in Calipari being the head coach of their team, because you want to be able to feel good about what you accomplish and not have to take a shower defending the leader of your program.  You can have Calipari, he'll be successful, but there are several coaches that will be just as successful, and do it in a way that it actually remains in the record books. It's obvious none of this stuff bothers you as a fan, but you certainly do not speak for all college basketball fans, just the more soulless of our species.

Since: Dec 18, 2009
Posted on: December 18, 2009 10:56 am

This is how it's forever going to be, UK fans

Let me fix this for you and what was written by Memphis fans right before Cal left Memphis.

"it's relatively easy to win at Memphis with players of far superior ability than the other team, than it is to win in the SEC where there is much greater parity. Add in the fact he won't earn more at Kentucky, and he has every incentive to stay at Memphis, build a legacy and possibly a dynasty."

Don't forget Memphis had Wall, Cousins, Dodson, AND Xavier Henry coming in this year. Memphis came up with MORE money than Kentucky for Cal. While the SEC may be superior to CUSA, it still isn't the Big East or the ACC. Cal jumped ship because of the allegations coming. Don't get me wrong, Kentucky has TONS more basketball tradition, championships, etc than Memphis.  However, most of today's recruits don't remember Kentucky's glory.  Whatever Wes tells John to do, John will do. John knows if he crosses Wes, the players won't be as easy to get.  So if Wes says "go to New York and coach Lebron" don't think for a minute that John won't jump.  Rupp may be sacred ground in college basketball but Madison Square Garden is the MECCA of all basketball.  I can hear Cal's speech right now.  A legacy is going to be much harder to build at Kentucky and he will never get out of Rupp's shadow.  Who could get out of that shadow?

Yes, I am a Memphis fan. I was in the same shoes defending Cal the last 10 years (he wasn't implicated, he didn't know, blah, blah, blah)

Since: Oct 2, 2009
Posted on: December 18, 2009 10:45 am

This is how it's forever going to be, UK fans

If Bob Knight coached most of his career under the 24-7 media and fan scrutiny that 24hr sports networks and the internet brings, he would've been tossed out long ago with the Mangino's of the world as an abusive coach who physically and mentally manhandled his players.  He wouldn't have even come close to being able to become the winning coach he did.  He might have done it with integrity, but no one would care what he said because he'd be have assault charges against him.

Perception of coaches and players is primarily based around how media members feel about them and choose to portray them.  Calipari had two Final Four appearances vacated because of things out of his control and is villainized for it.  Coach K still has a championship banner hanging from a season in which a star player has admitted to having been paid by an agent (the reason the UMass Final Four was vacated for Calipari), yet that wasn't vacated by the NCAA because they're still investigating...right.  Media doesn't mention that because they love Coach K -- hence, he's not perceived as being in the same group as Cal by fans, which he should be based on past circumstances.

Since: Mar 6, 2008
Posted on: December 18, 2009 10:38 am

This is how it's forever going to be, UK fans

Gee...I guess jokingly whipping one of your black players; choking assistants and players; and throwing potted plants at secretaries are pillars of integrity.

Parrish is right, you can think the coach of my team is dirty.  However, in an honest moment right after our basketball team has disloged their feet from your teams' very uncomfortable place.  Deep down inside you know you want him as your coach.  A guy that gets every facet of the modern college basketball player and knows how to build an environment that's attractive to him.  How can you lose when the best of the best are falling over each other for an offer?

Go ahead and hate, but we know what it's all about.  You know your best hope from this point forward is second place and it's killing you.  

Since: Mar 18, 2009
Posted on: December 18, 2009 10:37 am

This is how it's forever going to be, UK fans

Remember - not being "implicated" and being "innocent" are two very different things. Cal was "not implicated", in both cases.

Since: Jan 11, 2007
Posted on: December 18, 2009 10:29 am

This is how it's forever going to be, UK fans

 I loved Tubby, clean program, teams play good defense, unfortunately he had a bad couple of recruiting years, but he did get Patterson.Tubby Smith did not recuit Patterson, Billy Gillispie did.

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