The Big Blue Daily Mail -- Blue2K and Bob Knight Edition

Tonight is Blue2K, Drexel Dragons edition.  Hopefully, it will be a one-off, single issue version.

There are a couple of great posts today about the road to 2000 victories:

Moving on to the Bob Knight kerfuffle, which has not yet died down, I think a few more comments are in order.  First off, I want to recognize Larry Vaught for his continuing efforts to expose the irrational behavior of some sports journalists in endorsing Knight's position.  No matter what you think of Knight, the media groupthink on this is both troubling and unsurprising.

Before we get to the news, I want to add a couple of thoughts about the argument that Calipari should be held liable for the the vacated Final Fours at UMass and Memphis under the rubric that "It happened on his watch."

I find it interesting that so many are willing to hold coaches responsible for acts committed in secret by their players when it comes to NCAA violations, but when it comes to lawbreaking, they get a pass.  When was the last time you heard a serious call for a coach to be banned from coaching because one or two of his players wound up in legal trouble?  Let me help you with that -- never.

Follow me to the rest after the jump.

So let's get this straight -- it isn't the coaches fault when players hold up convenience stores with Uzis, hold up their own fans with pellet guns or have a  mind-boggling collective rap sheet.  But if they accept money from an agent or are accused of playing fast and loose with an entrance exam, two areas just as far removed from the coach's actual influence as aforementioned armed robbery, violence or mayhem, coaches are somehow held to be fully responsible.

I think this shows the depth of reasoning in this particular charge, which can only be described in terms of a parking lot puddle.  Sportswriters willing to effect the "death penalty" on a coach who has never been accused by the NCAA of anything, but are unwilling to apply the same standard to acts of lawlessness by thier charges are rejecting logic in favor of pure personal bias. 

There is no justifiable way you can hold Calipari responsible for the acts of his charges and not do the same for Urban Meyer (see link above), or even Tubby Smith.  For that matter, Calipari's charges have run afoul of the law as well, so if you are going to hold him accountable, that seems like a good place to start.  Of course, you would also then have to include a bunch of other coaches that you might not want to, so for many, that's out.

If we are going to hold coaches accountable for what happens on their watch, doesn't it make more sense to hold them accountable for the truly bad stuff instead of just rules violations?  Call me crazy, but if we are going to apply the ridiculous standard of guilt by proximity to college coaches, it looks like to me the proper place to start is with violent crime, or just general lawlessness.

You want to include NCAA trouble as well, you say?  Fine, that's absolutely defensible, but you don't see that argument anywhere -- too many great coach's ox would be gored by it.  So we get selective so we can assail the ones we don't like, all the while abandoning our pretense at ethnic fairnes by referring to Coach Cal as "oily" or "greasy" as though those terms don't recall Italian-American slurs of the past.

I suggest we stop this double standard of trying to blame a coach for the minor transgression by a player and ignoring that same relationship when the player decides to be a scofflaw rather than just a rule-breaker.  There really aught not to be an argument about which is worse, so why are we only applying the standard selectively?

Of course, we all know the answer to that one.

 

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