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Is this the beginning of an Era of Good Feelings in the Kentucky vs Louisville Rivalry?

With Mack in and Pitino out, are we going to be on friendly terms with our most bitter rivals?

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NCAA Basketball: Kentucky at Louisville Jamie Rhodes-USA TODAY Sports

Rick Pitino was one of the easiest figures to hate in all of college basketball, nay, in all of sports. He’s a liar, he’s pretentious, he’s smug, he’s an adulterer, he’s a turncoat, he’s irascible- and I could continue with the negative adjectives to describe such a loathe figure.

John Calipari and Pitino don’t like each other. Don’t let that podcast fool you. And Kentucky fans loved to hate Rick Pitino. He was the perfect villain. That’s why Calipari’s continued beatings of Pitino on the court were so satisfying. Everyone knew how much it bothered Rick and we loved every second of it.

But Rick’s gone because, at the very least, he couldn’t control his assistant coaches or, at the very most, he oversaw and conducted one of the most depraved basketball programs in the NCAA. After Pitino was fired a little juice in the rivalry was lost.

I admit I didn’t know a lot about Chris Mack. But the more I find out the more I-gulp- like about him. He is married to a Holy Cross (Lou.) graduate and I am also a graduate of that small coed Catholic School. So immediately I have a positive connection.

In his opening press conference, Mack did his best to downplay the rivalry. Of course he wants to win, but he didn’t take any shots at Cal or Kentucky and showed the utmost respect for the Kentucky coach.

And then there are his tweets.

I mean, he’s a goofball dad like me. Can you imagine Rick Pitino tweeting about eating at Roosters? Not in a million years.

Calipari’s relationship with his family and his goofy dad tweets are on par with Mack’s:

And then there’s the news that Mack is close to closing the deal with former Wake Forrest coach and current ESPN draft expert Dino Gaudio. Cal and Gaudio are close friends. I can’t imagine things getting too contentious between the programs.

What about Mack’s program philosophy? Afterall, Rick Pitino was all #L1C4. Program over everything. Individual player be damned.

I don’t know what’s real anymore.

Also Luke Murray will remain an assistant of Mack’s. You know, Luke Murray. Son of comedy legend Bill Murray. Murray the elder would show up to Xavier games wearing Xavier gear and kiss babies in the stands. I don’t know how I will feel seeing Peter Venkman in one of those godawful hats with the Old English L on it.


I’m sure in time Chris Mack will do something to piss off all of BBN. But for now, it seems like some of the old vitriol has gone away with that awful Crypt Keeper of a former Louisville coach.

We’ll always have this: