When I got up this morning, I read Alex's article below on the news that Stacey Poole's father, Stacey Sr., will be flying up to Kentucky to talk to his son about a possible transfer, only one thing stood out to me from the article:
At the end of the day, I’m going to make the call. He’s 20, but he’s still a kid. Four years from now, he can blame his father if it doesn’t work out.
Does anything about this quote stand out to you? Poole is a 20-year old young man. He isn't a "kid," legally or otherwise. He can vote, he can fight for the country and die, he can do everything but legally consume alcohol. So I was shocked when I read that his father really wasn't concerned about what his son thinks. This, to me, reads only one way: "I'm coming to get my son, I'm moving him from this school. and neither he nor anyone else has a say."
After I saw this, I flipped over to Kentucky Sports Radio to see if Matt Jones might have opined on the issue, as he's been on this story all night. Lo and behold, he has:
Some pretty astounding words there from Poole’s father if you think about it. For Poole’s dad to suggest that "at the end of the day, I’m going to make the call" about his 20 year old son is bizarre. Being a controlling parent is one thing, but to literally admit in a newspaper that you are going to plan the direction of your adult child’s life is without question, strange.
I have one thing to say about this -- ditto.
Seriously, what the heck can Poole Sr. be thinking? No, scratch that -- he clearly isn't thinking. If maturity is what you want for your son, turning him back into a little boy by way of a newspaper article in front of his friends and virtually every other college basketball player in America is absolutely wrong, and utterly shameful. This goes beyond "controlling," this is patently thoughtless and downright harmful, both to his current and future prospects.
Part of the culture of today's players is "being a man," even when we can all sympathize with Poole Sr.'s position that his son is still a "kid" -- fathers love their sons, and surely Poole Sr. loves his. But no player want's to be seen as a mama's boy, or a daddy's boy, in front of their peers. It minimizes him and gives others a psychological edge. To publicly state, unambiguously, that your adult male child has no say in his future is a virtual emasculation of the young man, in public for all to see.
I'm sure Mr. Poole has nothing but the best interests of his son in mind, but even if he is bound and determined to be the controlling parent despite the legal majority of his son, he should have kept that "in house" between him and his family. To go public with it like this is downright horrifying to me, and must be mortifying to Poole Jr.
Which brings to mind the possibility that Poole Sr. has decided that only by inflicting public embarrassment on his son could he place him into a situation where a transfer is necessary, and as sad as that may sound, that's what this looks like. Poole Sr. states in the article that he has been in Poole Jr.'s ear a long time about this, and what that says to me is that he has been trying to get him to transfer, but Poole Jr. is unwilling.
So to make sure he gets his way, Poole Sr. has decided to make his son's continued stay at Kentucky untenable by embarrassing him in public, through a newspaper, in front of his teammates, coaches, friends and classmates. I hope that isn't what happened, but unfortunately, it makes too much sense not to consider a possibility. We Kentucky fans have seen all manner of strange behavior by parents, and this would by no means be the strangest.
With that said, and no matter why, it is destructive, unfortunate, and stupefying. Maybe this all ends well. Let's hope so.