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Taylor's Take on the Recent Criticism of Matthew Mitchell

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Constant transparency is a privilege, not a right.

Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

What we are owed and what we actually receive walks a fine line between expectation and reality. Modern American society demands transparency in a way not seen since the days of the Watergate Scandal. This desire is good but, like all things, a hint of restraint is needed, especially regarding sports.

The recent departures from the University of Kentucky Women's Basketball Team serve as an excellent reminder of that what often goes on behind closed doors between employer and employee is none of the public's business.

Here are the established facts: since last autumn, four players requested and were granted a release from their scholarships, the last one being freshmen forward Batouly Camara. Assistant coaches Tamika Williams-Jeter, Camryn Whitaker and Adeniyi Amadou, left the coaching staff.

While defections such as these on a mass scale are unusual, it seems that each was handled internally with not one of the involved parties airing their grievances in a public forum. There is not a shred of evidence suggesting any wrongdoing by the basketball players, the assistant coaches or Matthew Mitchell.

During the Wednesday press conference, Matthew Mitchell provided an acceptable explanation, again without a hint of resentment towards the outgoing parties, and took all blame for the situation.

One would think that such professionalism would be applauded by the public, especially given the laughable ongoing public feud between the Commonwealth's sitting and former governor. Instead, the popular coach and the athletic department have been accused of "ducking" questions

The best example is Coach Mitchell's frigid exchange with Matt Jones on the popular Kentucky Sports Radio program. Jones and his listeners on social media didn't seem taken with Mitchell's lack of candid answers.

Why, though? What entitles them to know every detail of the situation? Simple curiosity?

That's not good enough.

Raking someone over the coals for essentially telling the public and select members of the media that any extra juicy tidbits are none of their business is dead wrong. In fact, it is downright childish and dangerous.

Heeding the call for gossip in the name of the pursuit of truth when the actual goal is an exclusive that will yield clicks or ratings severs the trust between journalist and source. It encourages actions in the dark like those that killed the men's basketball program in the late 1980's. After all, no one wants to be honest to a pack of hungry hounds after they constantly nip at one's heel.

At the end of the day, the lesson in all of this is that sometimes fans and sports personalities need to remember that constant transparency is a privilege, not a right.