Obvious opinions of Pat Forde aside. It's a pretty great article on Calipari and his deficiencies as a basketball coach. While I read it, I can't help but think of the man we have running our program. We may not always compete for National Championships but we will always have a coach and a team we can be proud to root for. Kentucky wishes they could say the same.
OT: Pat Forde Article on Calipari
Holy Shit Forde....damn that was rough...especially this part:
Q: Did you know that the two Kentucky teams relying solely on your recruits as the major contributors are last year and this year? And that their record is 42-20, 23-11 in the SEC, with an NIT berth and four losses to teams ranked outside the Ken Pomeroy top 100?
Q: Did you know that your first three teams at Kentucky all had veteran players recruited by previous coaches in key roles? Those teams went a combined 102-14, 40-18 in the Southeastern Conference, with two SEC titles, two SEC tournament titles, two Final Four appearances and a national title.
Those last two are rhetorical questions, by the way. No need to answer.
If you wrote like this more often, I wouldn't think you were a hack most of the time
Q: If February you proclaimed this to be the most overanalyzed team in the history of sports. Are five losses in a weak SEC a clever ploy to slow down the rampant analysis of the Wildcats?
I had always thought that the implication, when Calipari said this, was that if people would simply stop caring about Kentucky basketball and, to some extent, SEC basketball in general, the Wildcats would be the better for it. I think that those of us with a larger interest in the Big Ten will not have too much trouble with this. Surely that can only help him out, right?
Calipari deserves all shit that comes to him. Why any player would want to play for him, no matter how talented. Go with a coach that can actually make you a better ball player. That would be pretty much any other coach.
But especially Belein.
I understood why Camby wanted to play for him. I understood why D. Rose wanted to play for him.
There'll be others.
Calipari goes after one and dones. If you are a one and done would you go for a system coach like beilein or a freelance guy like calipari...plus cash. Easy choice.
Yeah, but there are other coaches you could play for (for one year) and then bolt to the NBA. Syracuse, Duke OSU, UF, UCLA, UCONN, Arizona and Kansas have all had 1 & done players and all have better coaches who are (as far as I can tell) better people than Calipari.
If I were that kid and Calipari left me (a true freshman) at a press conference to answer questions by myself, I'd be pissed off. That's not exactly what I call a coach having his player's back.
Calipari is a POS.
Given the last two years, I think recruits will start to question signing up to play for Cal. The teams have underperformed and I don't know if any of the players have gotten much better. Out of 2013's supposed "best recruiting class ever" only three of the five are projected first rounders, and only one is lottery bound. If you're a one and done player, that's not exactly the results you're looking for.
But my favorite bit wasn't even intended to be funny:
When it comes to playing time, there is little disincentive for poor performance. The stars get the minutes, even if they aren't getting the job done.
That's Calipari's strength as a coach, right? (It sure as hell isn't knowledge of X's and O's). He gets great recruits because he won't, he can't, seriously discipline them. A slap on the wrist if somebody gets way out of line, OK, that'll be understood. But he can't start taking playing time away from his stars. His job is to showcase them for the NBA and deliver them on time as first round picks. If he stops doing that, he'll lose his worldwide recruiting appeal, if you know what I mean.
It's not a bad thing. A lot of these guys are NBA ready, what's the point of the show? Who benefits from making them stay eligible for a semester and a half?
The NBA needs to cut the stupid rule or have other developmental options. A lot of these kids have no interest in being in a clasroom and that's not necessairly a bad thing. They've spent a lot of time refining their skills in a craft they hope to professionally practice. There's no logical reason why the 1 year removed rule exists or why there isn't a better developmental league (other than money but hey the WNBA and most ADs across the country are in the red so that doesn't stop anyone).
I agree there's no point in Calipari trying to put on a show by trying to discipline his players.
I don't agree that "the NBA needs to cut the stupid rule or have other developmental options".
First of all, why do they need to cut that rule? It's their league, they can institute rules that they want and that the Players' Assoc. agrees with. Second of all, there are existing options in place for high school players to choose. Go to Europe. It's been done before. College ball is just easier for them.
If I were an owner in the NBA, I'd prefer the 1 year removed rule stayed in place, or was increased to 2 years removed. If they're good enough after 1 year, they'll be good enough after 2 years. If they happen to learn a little more responsibility or gain a little more maturity along the way, even better. If they'd rather not go to class for 2 years, go to Europe. I'm willing to bet they'd gain some responsibility and maturity in 2 years in Europe as well.
I disagree with the NBA and NFL using colleges as de facto farm systems.
Mark Cuban has proposed an interesting solution. Using the NBA-D League as a farm system, while providing the players with an education in finance and money management.
Here is basically the article from ESPN:
-- Mark Cuban
They're "NBA ready" in the sense that they'd probably get drafted based of their potential; however, most of them, as we've seen this season and last, aren't "NBA ready" in the sense that they could earn meaningful minutes in an NBA rotation based on their current skill-sets.
I distincly recall Forde praising Calipari after Kentucky won the title and questioning why recruits would/ should go anywhere else for NBA development, winning titles and learning team play
I don't like Cal, so I loved that. I hope Billy D and the Gators beat them by 40 in the SEC tourney.
Ehh, Calipari's methods at UK have gotten him two Final Fours and a national championship. It's more or less worked for him.
That being said, I'd much rather have a coach like Beilein who is a proven talent developer. I'd also hate to have the constant turnover with my team year after year. Its nice seeing some familiar faces on the court each year.
Certainly a biting article. All his critcisms about his coaching style may be valid but to me the thing that stands out is Calipari's lack of accountability. He wants to distance himself from the losing and can almost pull the trick off because the players being blamed are Freshman who will be gone in a year. How can a 18/19 year old expect to be held accountable if their coach is not?
If there's one coach that can't get away with throwing his players under the bus, it's Calipari. The whole spiel is based on his ability to advance the careers of his one-and-dones. If he starts negatively impacting their reputations, they'll stop being sent his way. And he doesn't have anything else, if that network ever fails him.
I can't remember him ever doing this at all before last year. I watched their game yesterday with my father (old former coach) and he said "that guy's really a hothead." Which I thought was wrong, that's never really been my impression of him at all through the years and I kind of wondered if my dad, whose memory isn't so good any more, might have confused him with someone else...but sure enough, a few minutes later he was losing his shit and getting tossed.
I think the wheels are coming off.
Calipari and Saban can do whatever they want to players and still get the top guys. it's been proven. Saban cuts guys regularly yet coaches and parents still send their kids to him. Calipari has resided over two programs who have been hit hard by NCAA and he has never taken responsibility for his role, always putting it on the players.
His style isn't working. Once he lost the veterans and was left with entirely freshmen and sophomores his teams have started a downward slide. We saw this when Mike martin, Van Bergen and company left. The solution is to take a few under the radar Spike Albrecht types who'll be around a lot longer along with his 5 stars.
See, I agreed with much of the article, except for the last "question." His national title team was almost entirely freshman and sophomores with one upperclassmen that he didn't recruit (Darius Miller). The final four team the year before had a bit more experience, but not a lot more. He showed he can win with bringing in a new bumper class of freshmen every year. It just hasn't worked the last two years.
or even not making the final four before this goes from a strategy that works to that one year of success being a fluke?
Forde is a BIG time Louisville and Pitino guy...
...this means nothing. This is like a Jason Whitlock article on Rich Rodriguez or a Drew Sharp article on anything related to Michigan.
But he is packing facts...regardless of point of view, the data says Calipari has sucked the last two seasons
They lost in the first round of the NIT last year and they look horrible this season.
I don't need a Drew Sharp type reporter with a bone to pick telling me the obvious.
That said, they were pretty damn good the 3 seasons prior.
I dunno, this is just like Sharp writing an article on Michigan Football in my eyes. Michigan has "sucked" the past 2 years. We all know this. MSU has owned us the past 5 years or whatever, we all know this. OSU has owned us since Tressel, we all know this. Drew Sharp telling us doesn't change anything. The facts are right there for anyone who wants to write an article. It's not reporting.
It took Forde awhile to adjust to not being at ESPN, where the E is the most important letter, but he has become a much better writer/journalist at Yahoo. He'll never be mistaken for Bruce Feldman, but a least he is readable now. Ironically, he is more entertaining, too.
This piece does raise one question, though: could anyone here imagine ESPN allowing any writer to be this tough on Calipari?
nope because Dick Vitale would not allow it lol
Kentucky will probably be really good next year because outside of Randle, they won't be losing anyone and are bringing in a great class again.
They'll have at least 3 or 4 entries besides Randle. The Harrison twins, James Young and Cauley-Stein (and/or Dakari Johnson) are gone.
I don't think Cal has had fewer than 3 early entries in a year since he's been at UK.
First of all, I haven't seen the Harrison twins on any draft boards, and they shouldn't be. And I know James Young and Cauley-Stein have been projected as first rounders for a while, I just don't see it. What has Cauley-Stein done other than be tall? He averages 7 points and 6 rebounds a game, and shoots less than 50% from the line. And I don't get all the hype on James Young either. He's a good but not great SG. Not an elite shooter, not much of a passer at all, can rebound pretty well, but a lot of that has to do with his bulk, which won't be an advantage in the NBA. IMO, Randle is the only sure-fire first rounder of that bunch.
They were both top 15 to start the season. They've dropped, but they came in with the idea of getting out in a year. It would be surprising if they actually stayed, wisdom of that aside.
Young and WCS are still projected solidly in the first round. Regardless of how you personally project their success, that's the reality. Calipari players projected as mid first round picks don't stick around, ever. Ever.
Yes. I also wonder how much effort is involved with keeping guys who don't want to play school eligible for one year. Kentucky could be taking a one and done approach to players, as well.
And deservedly so. He's the best defensive center in the draft -- is one of the leading shotblockers in the country, and gets a respectable amount of steals. Despite being so active defensively, he blocks more shots than he commits fouls.
He doesn't score much, it's true, but considering he shoots 60%, it's difficult to discern if that's due to ability or the lack of his teammates getting him the ball. If I were a coach, and I had a 7-footer shooting 60% from around the hoop, I'd try to get him more than 5 shots a game. His free throw shooting has also improved from 36% last year to 49% this year. When you think about young 7-footers, he's much better at free throws than Andre Drummond, who shot a ridiculously bad 29.5% as a freshman at Utah, had no trouble getting drafted, is only up to 40% in his second season in the pros, and is considered one of the best young centers in the game. (His rebounding stats compare similarly to Drummond also). I hate Kentucky, but that team has multiple first-rounders on it -- possibly two in the top 10, which just goes to show how bad of a coaching job Cal has done.
Went to uconn
The poster was saying WCS doesn't score or rebound much, and isn't a great free throw shooter. My point is Drummond didn't do that in college either, still can't shoot free throws, and a) had no problem getting drafted in the first round, and b) is a valuable NBA player. The college game is different than the NBA, especially for centers.
Edit: I see now that autocorrect changed UConn to Utah, hence your correction.
I'm not saying WCS won't or can't be a good pro someday, but pointing to his deficiencies and saying "this kinda good center also sucked at that stuff" isn't an argument for why he should be a first rounder. I know he's a seven footer and the NBA loves that, but he hasn't shown to me that he's a sure-fire NBA player, which you should be to get drafted in the first round.
I agree with you that the important part isn't "will he go in the first round?" but "will he leave whether or not he's a first round talent?" It's very likely more UK guys answer yes to the second than to the first.
I'm not sure "sure-fire NBA player" is really a fair description of the level of talent at the tail end of the first round. Here's the last player taken in the first round in the last ten drafts, the number of NBA games played and started, and minutes per game in their NBA career:
- David Harrison (189/33/14.2)
- David Lee (577/419/32.4)
- Joel Freeland (51/1/9.4)
- Petteri Koponen (DNP-Coach's Decision)
- J.R. Giddens (38/1/6.5)
- Christian Eyenge (51/18/20.6)
- Lazar Heyward (72/0/8.2)
- Jimmy Butler (138/34/21.1)
- Festus Ezeli (78/41/14.4)
- Nemanja Nedovic (21/0/6.4)
The jury's still out on the later guys, obviously, but so far only three of the ten have even put in a season's worth of games in the NBA. About half the time they never make an NBA rotation.
You might get a David Lee or a Josh Howard or a Jimmy Butler. You're about as likely to get Petteri Koponen or J.R. Giddens.
6 players will not be leaving Kentucky for the draft.
Calipari basically takes half of an NBA team and then proceeds to not win a championship every year. I don't think any coach in college basketball does so little with such talented players. If he was getting #20 recruiting classes every year, he would be coaching at some middle of the pack Mountain West team.
in favor of the D-League. I agree with him... while I think it's unfortunate to the point of being tragic that many HS kids have no interest whatsoever in obtaining a university-level education, it's stupid to force them into the charade of being students for one season simply to play in the NBA. Doing so also makes a mockery of the NCAA's "student-athlete" image, and it inevitably puts colleges in the position of recruiting kids with no interest in academics and then having to bend their own rules and standards to keep these kids "eligible."
Mark Cuban is being a self-righteous douche here....He is bitching about the NCAA rule, I mean the NBA rule, allowing athletes to be one and done. The incentive to go to the D-league is simply not there financially. If you aren't going the NCAA route, there is no reason to not earn real money overseas
Cuban wants the D league to run like pro club teams in Europe. The best players over there don't go to college they stay in the system until they reach the nba or the top pro leagues in their countries.
Do you agree that the top players maximize their financial prospects by playing college ball?
Actually they may, because college offers a lot of visibility. A guy who makes a name for himself in college can be a lot more marketable as a pro than a no-college player, who will still be largely unknown when he starts his career.
will be the first. Go the NCAA route and you can choose among coaches with track records of putting players in the NBA, style of play, training facilities, location, teammates, etc. What happens if you go to the D-League? You get drafted to play somewhere, maybe Bakersfield. Are their coaches any good? How about their S&C program?
Sure, the things you bring up probably aren't as good (though aren't terribly different). How about "you get paid" or "you have a shot at playing in the NBA this year"? Those things might outweigh a slightly worse coach or strength program. And if top players started going to the D-league, it would get more attention which would allow them to hire better coaches or improve strength programs.
but he can also be a real blowhard. Let him put together a serious proposal than can be critiqued. I'd bet a lot that he never does. For now he's just spouting nonsense like "There's no reason for the NCAA to exist, none!" and that a life skills class and tutors are novel ideas that will prepare these players better than college. Did he really blame the NCAA for having one and done players? I'd like to hear his ideas on how the NCAA could stop that.
my cousin played women's basketball there. The women's team had dinner with him and his family. She's was not impressed. He spent the entire meal yelling at his kids.
All this is not sitting well with the faithful in KY.
Add in some Jimmy Johnson and Jerry Tarkanian and we'll have a Mr. Rushmore of college sleaze.
Tark was the coach at UNLV. Sleaziness is expected in Vegas.
I anxiously await the day when we find out that half of the players Cal has recruited to UK didn't even go to class or take exams in their one year there. I would put the odds at 1:1 that Kentucky gets sanctioned because of something Calipari did. He did it at UMass and then at Memphis, there's absolutely no reason to believe it won't happen again at Kentucky
and I can't wait for the news to break. I'll start the posbang thread
Calipari is the greatest coach Vacated ever had.
On your first point, I suspect our first clear clue will be the players that don't project to be drafted after their first year. Do they come out anyway, go play in Europe or the D-league instead of sticking around for another year? That might be a clue that they hadn't done what was necessary to stay eligible.
I love this article so much. Cal knew he was playing a dangerous game at UK and people are willing to forgive a lot when you're winning...and not so much when you're a constant embarrassment. Take note Luke Kennard and um, enjoy Devin Booker
I like to remind the UK super fan I went to college with, who is such an insufferable a-hole, to enjoy these wins now because they'll all be vacated soon