Well, as reported yesterday by Keith, Willie Cauley-Stein is headed back to Kentucky for his junior year. Let's see who else wants to come back and make this next season even more remarkable than this one.
Tweet of the Morning
Today is NCAA's early entry deadline day for underclassmen to decide to stay in NBA Draft. Coaches who pushed for this should be ashamed.— Fran Fraschilla (@franfraschilla) April 15, 2014
Absolutely right. I'm looking at you, Ol' Roy and Coach K.
Defensive line guru tells Mark Stoops this team is "much different... a better looking team." That's really encouraging, the defensive line took some major hits from graduation.
Kentucky loses a recruit to Alabama from the class of 2015. Well, it was bound to happen sooner or later.
CoachCal.com talks about Willie Cauley-Stein returning to Kentucky for his junior season.
"I want to come back and have a chance to win a national championship while also getting closer to earning my degree," Cauley-Stein said in a release. "Being at the Final Four this year was special, but not being able to help my teammates on the floor was tough. I look forward to helping us get back there next year while playing in front of the best fans in the nation."
We're looking forward to playing in a NCAA Tournament championship game without our Willie out.
Calipari doing lots and lots of book promos this week. If he thought that hip hurt during the tournament ...
I agree with Mark Story — let's cut Rex Chapman some slack here:
- Time to forgive. Those fire breathers on Twitter who are trying to "excommunicate" Chapman from Kentucky Wildcats basketball need to give it up. Chapman has two years of sweat equity in the UK men's hoops program. He is one of the more accomplished basketball players ever produced in our state. You don't eradicate that legacy with one carelessly-timed tweet.
Amen. Rex Chapman is a bona fide Kentucky hero. I saw him play. He's certainly not the first person to try to break news and stumble. Time to forgive, forget, and move on. As an aside, there is nothing I detest more than a Twitter tough-guy.
Calipari has no idea how many players will go to the NBA. He also says, as if it needed repeating, that the rumors about him coaching the Los Angeles Lakers are unfounded. Also, the tweak is revealed, pretty much what I said it was. The reason it was focused on Harrison is because he was the primary offensive initiator.
According to Rob Dauster, "The Tweak" was nothing more than a "brilliant marketing ploy." I swear, this is exactly what Calipari does to people — he makes them dumb. Dauster is not "dumb" in a strict sense, but some of what Calipari does just looks like marketing.
Contra Dauster's impression, this was not just some psychological marketing ploy. The Dribble Drive Motion is a "shoot first" offense. Your first option off penetration is to shoot. Calipari changed that by having not just Harrison, but the whole team think about shooting second, because penetration almost always yields open jump shots. So he asked Andrew, who was especially fond of shooting first as well as the primary offensive initiator to pass as his first option. That immediately produced results by getting rid of the Dribble Drive, Fling and Hope and replacing it with a genuine offensive strategy.
This was not marketing, and although it had a psychological effect, that wasn't the primary intent. Don't listen to that nonsense, because it is part and parcel of the "Calipari isn't a great coach" meme, whether intentional or not. Dauster et. al. want you to believe that Calipari's a genius manipulator but suffers from a lack of genuine basketball acumen. Don't buy that pap, it's a bill of goods.
Gary Parrish takes exactly the same position on "The Tweak" as Rob Dauster does and inoculates his opinion by taking the position that Calipari has pulled the wool over the eyes of the oh-so-dumb Big Blue Nation, and Memphis fans as well, and points to himself as the guy who knows that everything out of Calipari's mouth is BS.
This stuff is so darn weak. Look, Calipari undoubtedly changes the subject for his own benefit. That's true. And he uses misdirection a lot with both the media and the fans. The thing is, you have to be able to tell when he's doing that, and when he's not. Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.
Whether or not Parrish, or Dauster, understand college basketball well enough is a serious question to me. From the 50,000 foot view, I'm sure they get it, but when it comes to how you actually play the game, it's pretty clear they don't think Calipari knows beans about that, which is why we continue to get the meme, "Calipari is a great recruiter, not a great coach." This is exactly where it comes from, the media parsing him and trying to make him look oily and slick.
Calipari claims he doesn't read this stuff. I hope that's right. It's just wrong for somebody to be constantly pilloried with analysis designed to leave the impression that Calipari is little more than a snake-oil salesman. I suppose three Final Fours in four years just happens to anybody who can come up with a good sleight-of-hand. "Tweak?" Oh, shiny ...
John Calipari talks to Dan Patrick. Watch it here if you havent:
If you're still worried about him leaving for the Lakers, this should help.
Calipari's interview on The O'Reilly Factor was really awkward, according to Troy Machir at Sports Illustrated.
Other Kentucky sports
- DeNesha Stallworth has been selected in the third round of the WNBA draft by the Connecticut Sun. She was the 25th overall selection.
NFL exec calls Jadeveon Clowney "spoiled" and "lazy." Steve Spurrier, your office on line 1.
Clemson reportedly dismisses Jim Kelly's nephew from the team:
[Clemson Coach Dabo] Swinney said that the redshirt sophomore quarterback "has had a pattern of behavior that is not consistent with the values of our program."
Just when you thought the Miami scandal was over, Maria Perez, the attorney who fed the NCAA information at Nevin Shapiro's direction has been named in a complaint before the Florida bar. In related news, the NCAA has named Jon Duncan as the permanent NCAA enforcement director. He was named interim director after Julie Roe Lach was fired in connection with the Miami investigation.
There is no doubt that the existing NCAA rules on feeding athletes are incredibly dumb. This is what happens when you allow bureaucracies to make food choices for people. When somebody turns 18, if they are not old enough to decide what they put in their bodies, when will they be?
"No one’s going to get a recruiting advantage over an egg-white omelet," he said.
Montrezl Harrell will return to Louisville. Good for him. I think that's a very good call, and I'm sure the Cardinals are real happy to have him back.
Glenn Robinson III leaving Michigan for the NBA.
Michigan State's Gary Harris to enter the NBA draft.