When you're a Division I head coach, most of the time you won't hear any groaning about your team blowing out an opponent. Then again, John Calipari isn't your ordinary college hoops coach.
His No. 1-ranked Kentucky team has checked all the boxes early this season, achieving a perfect record through six games -- and doing so on cruise control. The Wildcats' average margin of victory in those six games: 28 points. That scoring margin ranks sixth nationally.
And Calipari isn't enjoying it.
"I told the fans we need to be in a close game," Calipari said Sunday afternoon -- referring to the fans who came to watch their practice.
"We need close games to see -- alright, who and how do we finish a game?" Calipari said. "Who do we finish with and how do we finish? Who can make the play? Who cannot -- absolutely not -- be in the game? But, until you're in a close game you don't know. Believe me, I don't want these kind of scores. At times, I'd like us to shoot 32 percent and win. Like, just god awful, can't make a shot and still win the game."
He may seem crazy. But as the coach of the top-ranked team, he wants his team to be prepared for any situation. So far, it has been easy treading for the Cats, who now have six straight wins of 21 points or more.
So far this season, there has been just one player who has averaged lower than 32 percent shooting through six games. But Calipari knows there will be games when the shots won't fall -- and he wisely wants to make sure his team is prepared to learn how to scrap in a dog fight.