Blog Entry

Sometimes the world spins w/o a push from 'Wes'

Posted on: April 19, 2010 10:01 am

I might've set a record for emails about William Wesley over the past week.

If I got one I got 100 -- one for each thing good ol' Worldwide Wes supposedly orchestrated on behalf of Kentucky in the past seven days. According to readers, he delivered recruits and met with others, and I'm half-surprised nobody's mentioned the role he almost certainly played in Sunday's 6-5 baseball win over Florida.

Wesley must've at least called pitches, right?

Honestly, it's become comical.

And just so we're clear, understand that I'm not here to tell you Wesley doesn't have influence on lots of things because, well, he does. You don't gain the reputation of being one of the most powerful men at all levels of basketball without being powerful. He's everything you think and more. But his celebrity has reached a point over the past few years where he's either blamed or credited for everything that happens, and that's just silly.

Let's take Brandon Knight, for instance.

Knight is the top point guard in the Class of 2010.

He committed to Kentucky last week.

Best I can tell from talking to people on both sides of Knight's recruitment, Wesley was uninvolved. He's never met Knight's parents and never attended one of Knight's games at Pine Crest High in Florida even though he had every reason in the world to be there considering Billy Thompson Jr was among Knight's teammates. Thompson Jr, case you didn't know, is the son of former Louisville star Billy Thompson, a Camden, N.J. native just like Wesley. They've known each other forever to the point where they're considered "family."

But Wesley never went to watch Knight and Thompson play.


Because it would've been on Twitter in a matter of minutes, and there was no sense in turning the recruitment into a spectacle because Knight was going to Kentucky no matter what. And yet you know who got credit for Knight's commitment to Kentucky, don't you? Yep, Worldwide Wes, the boogie man of basketball whose reputation has reached legendary status. Again, I'm not trying to tell you his presence hasn't aided in recruiting. All I'm trying to tell you is that he's much bigger than most realize, and he's not just out there hustling players for Calipari. For every time you've seen Wesley at a UK game, there's another time where he had dinner with Ben Howland, spent an afternoon with Mike Krzyzewski, sat with Bill Self's wife at a KU game.

Remember, he's Worldwide Wes.

Not Commonwealth of Kentucky Wes.

Anyway, I guess my message is this: Chill.

Each thing that happens at Kentucky or with Calipari is not the result of Wesley. Trying to credit or blame him for every UK player is like trying to credit or blame Osama Bin Laden for every terrorist attack. Things are more complex than that. So my advice is to chill and take a step back because though Wesley is more than most understand he's not exactly what most seem to think. I mean, if Calipari somehow ends up coaching LeBron James next season, absolutely, credit or blame Worldwide Wes. I know I will. But those who are now tying to credit or blame him for every little thing are going overboard because sometimes, if you can believe this, he's just not all that involved.

Since: Aug 26, 2006
Posted on: April 22, 2010 6:36 pm

Sometimes the world spins w/o a push from 'Wes'

@ bmiddy232 - So, let me get this straight.  You're an expert on the college recruiting landscape because you were: a) friends with ONE future NBA player, and b) you work as an intern for one of the 10 million rivals' affiliate sites on the Internet?  The only thing you seem to be an expert in as far as I can tell is douchebaggery...   &

Since: Apr 21, 2010
Posted on: April 21, 2010 10:43 am

Sometimes the world spins w/o a push from 'Wes'

All I can say is Wes is doing a hell of a job for us at Kentucky. 

Since: Mar 27, 2009
Posted on: April 20, 2010 7:31 pm

Sometimes the world spins w/o a push from 'Wes'

He does not appear to be related but I cannot help but think that Gary is the offspring of "Bagdad Bob"

Since: Mar 7, 2010
Posted on: April 20, 2010 5:05 pm

Sometimes the world spins w/o a push from 'Wes'

It's a little amazing to me a UT fan would even want to get this type conversation started. I guess there's no one who does any power brokering for UT or even Bruce Pearl?

WWW really does a lot of good for some of these kids. Stuff like helping them change their image so they're more attractive to NBA GM's, directing them to programs where they may have a better chance at getting drafted, keeping them away from some sleazebag agent who might do them harm or even cause them to be ineligible for the NCAA. Direct them away from a Coach who doesn't develope kids into better NBA prospects or one who is only concerned with what they bring to his program, not helping them realize their dreams ASAP.

Sure recruiting is a dirty business, but is it any worse than the NCAA and their double standard of using kids to make billions, letting Coaches run in the  direction that suits them, yet the kid is stuck because he committed to the school not the coach. And what amazes me is Wes doesn't have his hand stuck out wanting money. He makes plenty of that from other legitimate sources. We need more WWW's who take kids & their families best interest to heart because with all the sleazebags in the business, navigating through it all can be confusing at best.

Lastly I wonder why a UT Fan is so mad at Wes, is it because Selby went to Kansas? Hey maybe Kansas will be the best place for him, especially if he wants to be a one and done cause I doubt seriously that would have happened at UT. Ask Scotty Hopson? He'll be what a Jr this year and will end up playing four years before he's done.

Since: Jan 29, 2009
Posted on: April 20, 2010 4:00 pm

Sometimes the world spins w/o a push from 'Wes'

Well like I said you've got it all figured out!

Since: Aug 6, 2009
Posted on: April 20, 2010 3:34 pm

Sometimes the world spins w/o a push from 'Wes'

I know you said "like".  But in no way did you ever substantiate that comment.  Which prep player did WWW convince to go pro to Europe?
Try this one on for size.  I won't name any names, but I happen to be the president of an affiliate of colleges and universities that compete in athletics.  It is a billion dollar industry but I don't want to give my name out.  Also I have been bestowed with omniscient power to know everything everywhere that goes on, particularly in recruiting.  It is a nice power to have you should look into it.  Well with this power I know more than you so pfffffffffffffft!  Also I watched a movie once where it showed how clean recruiting was.  So there!
I'm sorry I just can't keep that up.  I love how we can both pretend to know things that we don't.  Even better is how you use a sensationalized hollywood movie to support your claim.  Let me guess, you use Glory Road to show how racist UK, Rupp, and UK fans are.

I'm not sure if your brain is actually pea-sized, or if you just like to act like it is. 

Since: Jan 29, 2009
Posted on: April 20, 2010 3:20 pm

Sometimes the world spins w/o a push from 'Wes'

This will be my last comment on this particular subject, because I do not have enough time or patience to undress every statement you just made! Anyways, I know it was Sonny Vaccaro who initiated the Tyler to Europe deal because I covered it, I said guys LIKE "WWW!" Vaccaro being LIKE "WWW!" You can try to rationalize it all you want, but you've done nothing to prove error in my statement of college basketball recruiting being a dirty business! Sure there's nothing wrong with simply networking, but if you seriously believe that these players are only networking for the future, you are seriously very naive. You have nothing to say to change what I know about cb recruiting because I've seen with my own eyes all that goes on with these high school players through the eyes of a friend (who will remain nameless), who I went to school with and just happened to be a McDonald's All-American and is now one of the best PG's in the NBA! I also cover recruiting as an intern for a rivals affiliate, so I feel I have a pretty informed take on the process, even though you don't have to cover it, or know someone who went through it to get the gist. Just use your imagination, if that doesn't work watch "He Got Game" and that should at least give you some basic understanding! Of course in your case, you've got it all figured out brotha!

Since: Aug 6, 2009
Posted on: April 20, 2010 1:46 pm

Sometimes the world spins w/o a push from 'Wes'

So Bmdiddy, you are into proving points? How about this one. You are so convinced that WWW is a bad guy that you can't even get your facts strait. The only two high profile recruits to play professionally instead of college are Brandon Jennings and Jeremy Tyler (maybe there are others, but those are the only two I can think of). Do you have any idea who convinced them playing overseas was a good idea? Hint: it wasn't WWW. It was Sonny Vaccaro. If you want to find a villain in all of this, look at Vaccaro. Somehow I'm guessing that doesn't fit your agenda since he doesn't have a relationship with UK/Calipari. So whether you were unaware and just make wild accusations, or you knew this all along and chose to blur the line... this goes to prove exactly Mr. Parrish's point. Opposing fans want to pin everything bad that happens on WWW. When in FACT (look up the meaning of that word) he doesn't have nearly the breadth of influence his detractors claim. As for basketball recruiting being dirty.... sure I guess. It wouldn't surprise me. I guess it's really a value judgment. I see college football recruiting as being dirty. The Memphis Women's Golf Coach was handing out cash money and checks, so maybe women's golf is dirty too. Personally I think the prohibition on these kids being professionals is arbitrary and despicable. The NCAA makes billions off these kids, there is nothing illegal about making money, trying to set up shoe contracts, or making contacts with people who can help you professionally after college. There is absolutely nothing wrong with associating with WWW, Sonny Vaccaro, or any of the other number of runners/agents. You can set yourself up for later professional relationships (this happens with virtually every other person in college... it's called networking). It's only a problem (in the arbitrary eyes of the NCAA) if you take money or sign a contract (except pro baseball for some reason) while still competing in the NCAA.

Since: Jan 29, 2009
Posted on: April 20, 2010 1:19 pm

Sometimes the world spins w/o a push from 'Wes'

"More like money hungry parents that can't wait for 2 or 3 years before their kid starts taking care of them."

While that may sound legit for those simple minded individuals who try to use that excuse to rationalize their "money hungry" ways, but to the rest of us with common sense it's only a poor excuse. Yeah because after surviving the 16/17 years it took for their kid to develop into a highly rated prospect, waiting another 2-3 years to give him the best chance to succeed long term instead of just taking the easy way out is just out of the question, right? Again, that goes back to my point about these bball recruits and all the people that surround them more interested in making their own "come up," sometimes its their parents which is sad but true! I think that also says a lot more about them as parents than it does about "WWW!"

But still you have yet to answer my question which is, if it was your kid and some agent came and tried to convince him to do the same as Jeremy Tyler, what would you do? Take the whole UL/UK rivalry passion out of the equation, what would be your reaction as a parent?

Since: Jan 20, 2009
Posted on: April 20, 2010 11:30 am

Sometimes the world spins w/o a push from 'Wes'

It appears that only one person took your original post to heart and commented on it.  He/she is in fact a BYU fan based on their avatar.  The only thing they said about yours is that they love it when someone says something is a fact when in reality it's an opinion.  Read the article and realize this, UK fans already knew waht Gary was saying and have laughed off the World Wide Wes stuff for the last 8 months. 

It's guys like "WWW" that convince vulnerable kids and their parents that its a smart move to skip your senior year of high school and play pro ball overseas! Tell me if you had a son, who happened to be a major prospect as a junior in high school, and some agent came and tried to convince him to do the same as Jeremy Tyler?
More like money hungry parents that can't wait for 2 or 3 years before their kid starts taking care of them.  All they need to see is one of the 100 NBA draft sites out there that project a kid in the 2013 draft and they think they are set.  WWW doesn't have to convince them of anything...they go looking for him and other agents.

Perfect example, Daniel Orton.  His father is convinced that his son is better than Cousins and won't hear anything to the contrary....That comes from those family "friends" and interent sites....just ask Randolph Morris about those sites and such...did the same thing and as a result screwed himself out of a draft.

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