The Hypocrisy of Pat Forde

forde-lol.png.pagespeed.ce.8FckQal1a3As occurred when John Calipari finished his first season with Kentucky, Draft Night was a huge success for Kentucky Basketball Athletes. Along with that occurred what was become an annual affair. Pat Forde railed against Kentucky Coach John Calipari’s insistence that College Basketball be not only centered on a successful National Championship run but a successful night at the NBA Draft. Calipari wants the players he recruits to have success in moving on to a successful career in the NBA. Pat Forde thinks this is a bad idea. Pat Forde thinks that this is bad for College Basketball.

Pat Forde seems to think that College Basketball should not be about the players themselves but about everything else. Pat Forde seems to begrudge the Athletes any success or monetary gain themselves. All the while, Pat Forde’s whole financial existence is predicated upon College Basketball athletes.

College Sports Columnists can make money off of College Basketball. The Coaches whom Pat Forde admires such as Rick Pitino and Bobby Petrino can rake in millions off of College Basketball. Mark Emert and the NCAA can make Billions off of College Basketball. Pat Forde, himself, makes hundreds of thousands of dollars each year off of College Basketball.

However, College Athletes are supposed to subsume their own financial well being for the greater good bottom line of the NCAA, College Basketball and College Sports Columnists.

Pat Forde loves nothing more than to crank yank John Calipari for not winning Championships with “the most talented roster” in College Basketball. Talent doesn’t always work out to the best team on any given night. Potential sometimes takes time. Some talent, such as Anthony Davis & Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, can make the leap from High School to College and reach the highest potential. Others take more time. One cannot tell this to Pat Forde. If Calipari has the most talent, he should have the best team. He should win the NCAA Tournament. We shouldn’t even play the games. We should just crown that team whom Pat Forde has deemed the most talented. Certainly…

Pat Forde rips on Calipari each year after Draft Night. Of course, he let that animosity slide to the background in 2012 when Kentucky won the National Title. One has to wonder how Pat Forde held in all of that hatred. It must have killed him. I suppose he consoled himself by ghost writing a hagiography about the Philandering Pitino and Petrino Brothers.

ReboundRules_hc_cCalipari says that Draft Night is important to Kentucky. Kentucky is a Player’s First Program. To Pat Forde that is anathema to College Basketball. Talented men (and one assumes women) should put the NCAA first. They should be students first. They should be everything first except human beings who wish to put their talents to use at the highest level of their chosen profession. God forbid that these human beings wish to profit themselves from their talents. These particular children of God should stay in the NCAA for four years and allow the NCAA to profit immensely while they themselves “earn” a degree that is mostly worthless and as they themselves take all of the risk upon themselves.

For it is a given that if a talented athlete suffers a “career” ending injury, the NCAA will throw them under the bus.

The morality of it all! Calamity of Calamities!

A Black Teenager or early Twenty Something using his talents to enrich himself. We can’t have that. That’s bad for the NCAA. Because it is bad for this to happen:

John Calipari accomplishes his prized goal: watching Kentucky players get drafted

That is the Column Title to the latest Pat Forde hit piece aimed at John Calipari.

Below are to more gems from the keyboard of the most hateful human in College Sports:

Fortunately he has educated the Kentucky fans on the miniscule nature of the national title mission. They now see the bigger mission: helping guys like Karl-Anthony Towns get drafted No. 1, because he surely wouldn’t have had a chance at being the No. 1 pick if he’d been coached for six months by a lesser man and smaller stone than Calipari. Imagine if Towns had made the monumental mistake of playing for Mike Krzyzewski, Bill Self or Roy Williams – he’d probably be an undrafted free agent.

And another:

Who said winning and getting your players drafted are mutually exclusive? Duke won it all and had three first-round picks Thursday night. Wisconsin played in the title game and had two in the top 20. Yet neither Krzyzewski nor Bo Ryan feel compelled to sell their fan base on the dubious premise that the draft is a higher goal than a national championship.

Apparently, winning is everything to Pat Forde. It is a zero sum game. Either Calipari wins the National Championship each year or he is a failure. Thus sayeth Pat Forde.

The irony! Oh, the irony!

This is the same attitude which Pat Forde uses as a weapon against the University of Kentucky Basketball Fan Base. When Kentucky fans were upset that Tubby Smith wasn’t getting to the Final Four much less the National Title game, columnists such as Pat Forde ripped into them. Kentucky fans were unrealistic. “No Coach can get to the Final Four or win a Title as much as Kentucky fans desire.” Kentucky fans were crazy. Kentucky fans were/are racist. Kentucky fans were bad people. Kentucky fans chased off a good Black Man because he was Black. These were all characterization made by Pat Forde and the National Sports Media. Yet, this is the exact same expectations that Pat Forde seems to have for John Calipari. Now, who is being unreasonable.

John Calipari has had an amazing run of success in the NCAA at Kentucky. He has 4 Final Fours, one Championship and a string of successful players transition to the NBA. His players have remained academically eligible. His players have been active in the community. There have been very few off the court issues. His four year players have graduated. And, yes, he has had Three (3) Number One NBA Draft Selections since 2010.

Of course, all has not been perfect. Aaron Harrison was not drafted. Daniel Orton was Daniel Orton. A couple of guys have transferred out for playing time or because they did not fit in well at the program.

Overall, Kentucky Basketball under John Calipari has been a smashing success and many attached to the program have gone on to success in the NBA and elsewhere.

I’m not certain why Pat Forde has such a problem with this…unless he just hates John Calipari.

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Kentucky’s Road to the NCAA Championship in 2012

3 of the Top 10 and 4 out of the Top 13 Teams in the Poll lost their last games to Kentucky. How often does that happen.

Kentucky d

efeated 8 of the Top 25 Teams in this Final Poll in 2012. One of the teams (Florida), Kentucky defeated 3 times. One other team (Vandy), Kentucky defeated twice.

This was not a cakewalk season. Kentucky played a hell of a schedule on it’s road to the NCAA Championship.

Coach Cal, Anthony Davis, MKG and the rest of the team accomplished all of this with an almost Zen Buddhist like approach to the game wherein winning was not the focus, but, striving to be the best individuals and team they could possibly be was the focus.  By doing so, they reached the ultimate prize in College Basketball.  Coach Cal molded a mass of talented individuals into a team wherein these talented athletes became one with the Basketball Universe.  By subsuming egos and desires and surrendering individual glory for team excellence, Anthony Davis, MKG, TJ, Darius, Teague, Wiltjer, Lamb and the rest of the team became one of the Greatest Teams in College Basketball history.

Kentucky strived not to defeat the opponent, but, to reach their greatest potential as a team.  THAT! is Greatness!

The Basketball Gods are in awe and well they should be.

GO BIG BLUE!!!

***Too bad Stacey Poole and his father failed to failed to grasp the concept.***

Kentucky Wildcat 2012 NCAA Champions

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Kentucky brought home #8 in 2012.  It’s been a 14 year wait.

The fans slogged through a decade of TLT excuses, debacles and “almost” after “almost.”  2 more years of the hard drinking, tyrannical imbecility that was BCG.  Finally Coach Cal built a team that could bring it home.

Two Final Fours in two years and a National Championship.

Anthony Davis was named Final Four MOP.  He also swept the National Player of the Year Awards.  That was a first for a Kentucky Player.

Still, the haters are out there in droves.  Waiting in the wings for their chance to bring Kentucky down.  It’s not gonna happen, though.

GO BIG BLUE!!!

Kentucky Wins the 2012 National Championship!

They said it couldn’t be done.  No team starting all underclassmen and dominated by Frosh Stars could win a National Title.  Carmelo Anthony was a fluke.  He had Senior Leadership.

Others said that if Kentucky won with this “Pro” laden team that it would be a Collegiate apocalypse.

Funny, no one thinks it’s the end of the world when (predominantly) white guys leave College early for careers at Google, Microsoft or Apple.

Does Mark Emmert think of Bill Gates and Steve Jobs as One and Doners?

I don’t understand all of the lamentations and gnashing of teeth by the die hard traditionalists.  Students attend University to prepare them for a career.  The NBA is a career for these guys.  If a computer geek or a mathematician is recruited out of school for his talents, no one complains.  I guess that’s a more valid career path than the NBA or NFL.  I don’t see it that way.  Apparently, others do.

John Calipari takes talented athletes and prepares them for the professional world.  His kids go on to earn accolades and awards at the next level.  Is that not what a good college professor is supposed to do for his students?  Calipari develops their talents into marketable skills.  Skills that enable them to enter the marketplace of their profession with an advantage over students who learn the game from other coaches.

Because Cal does this and does so unapologetically, he’s a smarmy, greasy salesman.  I think it makes him an honest broker of future marketability for kids whose talent lies in the sport of basketball.  He’s honest.  He says come play with me and I’ll teach you how to excel at the college level and prepare you for the Professional level.  What is wrong with that?  Should he be like Coach K and demand that kids delay their professional debut even though they are ready to enter their chosen field of endeavor.  That would be the definition of smarmy and greasy to me.  Coach K is righteously indignant when a kid goes Pro before he gives his permission.  Coach Cal informs his men of their options and advises them based on the best information available at the time.

The NCAA makes millions off of these kids.  It is a matter of course that the NCAA wants to maximize the potential pay off on the marketability of the “student-athlete.”  The NCAA is not interested in what’s right for the Athlete.  The NCAA is interested in making more money by marketing big time Collegiate Star Athletes.  That’s the real concern behind the laments and the teeth gnashing.

If an Athlete is ready to go Pro, there should be no more reason to hold him back than there was reason to hold back Bill Gates or Steve Jobs.  The NCAA and their silly NBA Draft deadlines are full of stale, last century thought processes.  These people and their media instigators need to join the present.

Anthony Davis is ready to go Pro.  If he stays at UK for one more year, it’s a decision that the NCAA should respect.  If Anthony Davis decides to enter the NBA Draft after one year, the NCAA should give it no more thought than if a Bill Gates, Steve Jobs or a Mark Zuckerburg leaves school to start a business.  It’s the same thing.

Risk/Reward.  There is too much risk in staying in College for an Athlete like Anthony Davis.  He’s ready.  The NBA thinks he’s ready.  The NBA is his prospective employer.  They know whether or not they wish to hire an Athlete or not.  It’s a decision between the employer and the potential employee.  The NCAA should back out of it.

In my opinion, a player should be able to enter the draft, attend the draft camps at NBA expense and, if that player is not drafted, he should be able to re-enter college as a Student Athlete.  That is exactly what these guys are.  They are student ATHLETEs.  They are studying under a Coach who is teaching/coaching them on the principles and skills of entering into a Professional Career as an ATHLETE in the NFL, NBA, MLB, MLS or any of a multitude of other sports.  The NBA Draft should be treated as an internship.  Nothing more and nothing less.

A law student interns.  A medical student interns.  Business Management Majors intern.  Some of these students have paid internships.  Some of the brighter and more talented students enter into internships that have perks.  Many of these students who take these internships are on scholarships.  If a law student takes an internship with a prestigious Law Firm, they aren’t ripped off of scholarship status.  That internship is seen as a positive.  Conversely, if a Student on an Athletic Scholarship enters the NBA Draft and attends Draft Camps or Skill Camps, they’re punished for doing so.

National Collegiate Athletic Association.  They are supposed to be helping these kids enter into their chosen Profession in the most advantageous position possible.  That’s not what they do, though.  The NCAA does everything in it’s power to keep it’s Students AWAY from their Profession of choice.  They do their best to make a student ATHLETE enter into his/her chosen Profession as blind as possible.  The NCAA attempts to bully student ATHLETEs into staying in school so that the NCAA can profit from their presence and skill sets.  Instead of joining these kids in their sojourn from student to Professional, the NCAA sets out to do it’s best to keep them blind and distanced from their chosen profession.

The NCAA should encourage kids to enter into agreements with Agents so that their student ATHLETES can benefit from persons who know the business.  Instead, the NCAA drives agents underground and keeps it’s student ATHLETES from learning the details of the business until moments before they enter into their chosen careers.  This is a ridiculous standard.  A ridiculous procedure.  The NCAA is part of the problem in setting these kids up for failure when they finally enter the Professional World of Athletics.

Kentucky just made the witch hunt a little harder, though.  Calipari embraces the system.  Instead of tying blinders around his kids eyes, he tries to enlighten them as to the practices and standards of the Profession to which they aspire.  For this, he is vilified.  He’s hated.  He’s hunted.

It’s a ridiculous circus is the NCAA.  A grand joke.  All for the love of profit.  And they call Calipari dirty.  Get real.  The NCAA is the problem.

Kentucky Wins! (and almost gets a Triple Double Double)

MKG 19pts and 9rbds

AD 12pts and 14rbds

TJ 15pts and 11rbds

GO CATS!!!

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*** Syracuse goes down to Cincy.  KU gets hit by the Bears.

Kentucky Wildcats Kentucky

Name FG 3Pt FT Off Reb Ast PF Pts
Anthony Davis 4-8 0-1 4-5 1 14 0 2 12
Terrence Jones 5-12 0-2 5-8 3 11 0 2 15
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist 5-9 0-1 9-13 5 10 1 3 19
Doron Lamb 4-7 1-3 3-4 0 2 0 3 12
Darius Miller 0-2 0-1 0-0 1 1 3 3 0
Marquis Teague 0-6 0-0 2-4 0 0 6 0 2
Kyle Wiltjer 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 1 0
Totals 18-44 1-8 23-34 10 38 10 14 60

Kentucky, Davis and New Orleans

 

 

Anthony Davis Billboard at the Super Dome in New Orleans

Anthony Davis Billboard at the Super Dome in New Orleans

 

Kentucky is making an all out push this year on behalf of Anthony Davis and the NPOTY Campaign.  As well they should.  The guy is deserving of the award.  He’s the best player on the best team in the Nation.

It should not be counted against him that he is surrounded by talent.  If he was not, he would be more dominant in my opinion.  I think the talent that surrounds him stops him from showing the depth of his talent and ability.  If he had to be the center of the offense, the kid would be putting up huge numbers.  As it is, he merely has to play his part and he does this well.  A lesser person would demand the ball more.  A lesser talent would demand the ball.  AD doesn’t do this.  He plays to his strengths and has improved all throughout the year.  He is integral to the game plan at UK.  He is often the center of focus for the attack of other teams.  They’ve attempted to bully him, beat him and hurt him.  He has come back each time admirably.  Each new tactic to take him out of the game has resulted in AD adapting and overcoming.  The kid is legit.

 

If AD is not player of the year then a player of the year does not exist in College Basketball.

GO BIG BLUE!!!

 

ONE AND DONE, Kentucky Basketball and John Calipari

2011-2012 Kentucky Frosh and Sophmores

Understand, we don’t recruit a young player saying that there is no question he’s a one-and-one player. We don’t know! Are you telling me that we knew Eric Bledsoe had a chance out of high school to go in the first round after one year? If they tell you that, they’re lying. Those same people also said our three freshman starters from last season would leave after one year. Two came back because they wanted to win a national championship and the other one that left had a 4.0 grade-point average and 60 credit hours.

I tell every player that we recruit that I don’t have a magic wand. At the end of the year, we’ll see where everything is, we’ll give you the information, and you and your family make a choice to stay or come back. I would love to coach all of these guys for four years and have them earn a college degree in four years, but if they have an opportunity to reach their dreams, I will not be the person to hold them back, nor will I let anybody at this university or in my program do it.

~ John Calipari

I don’t see Cal pushing players out the door.  I see him evaluating their development and their potential earnings and advising them according to the possibilities inherent therein.

Would Knight have gone higher in the draft after one year.  Would Cuz have gone higher with one more year.  Doubtful.

Knight maintained a high GPA throughout High School.  If memory serves, his mother was a teacher.  I doubt he’d have gotten away with slouching off on his studies with such being the case.

The One and Done System is self perpetuating.  In order to get the most talent players, Cal or any coach must exhibit the ability to get these kids to the next level in the most expeditious manner.  Holding them back or being unable to develop their games would be disadvantageous to  Kentucky and Calipari.

Cal misspoke only slightly when he made the statement that the Wall/Cuz/Bledsoe/Orton/PPat Draft Night was the greatest night in Kentucky History.  That night will and has lead to an ongoing influx of talent to Kentucky Basketball that should result in a National Title.  At least one National Title.

Cal does not have to pay players to come to UK.  The most talented, the more diligent and the more intelligent players will come to UK because they know that it is *THE* path to the next level and that hard work will pay off with a greater pay day than any booster could possibly offer them for a one or two year stay at some other school.

With that in mind, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Muhammad and Noel here next year.

The kids that want to play with the best and win are the kids that are going to come to Kentucky.  We’ve seen that in this last class.  These kids came together because they want to win.

Some of these kids will actually stay so as to increase their long term potential.  That is what the intelligent kids will take into consideration.  The selfish, impatient kids should go elsewhere and probably will be encouraged to do so.  Such has been the pattern that I’ve noticed since Calipari has joined the Kentucky family.

Calipari wants to win.  As Wooden and other Coaching Greats have made quite plain in book after book, talent wins.  Well prepared talent wins more.  Experience is good if a coach can get it, but, talent bests experience.  This team is proving that right now.

Cal’s challenge is to ensure that these kids are prepared for the games and prepared for their futures.  If he does that, UK will win and the kids will win which will bring in more and more talent which will bring more and more wins.

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GO BIG BLUE!!!

Anthony Davis

Anthony Davis ~ The Prodigee

The kid is being compared to Kevin Garnett.  Some say that he might be a better prospect.   He has all of the swagger but none of the arrogance of KG.  The Dude is all business.  This time next year, he’ll be a Millionaire.

When he’s on the court, his presence must be respected.  His 13 points a game are nothing compared to his denial of offense to the opponent.  How many shots are altered?  How many opponents intimidated by his presence?  They tried to go around him, go over him, go through him.  None of it works.  The kid improvises.  The kid adapts.  The kid overcomes.  Gunny Highway would be proud.  There is no one else like him in College Ball.  I don’t think there is anyone since the early days of Shaq that has had the presence that Davis has on the court.  Hell, the kid can even play a little point from time to time and has been green lighted to shoot the Trey.   Unbelievable!

There really is nothing else that can be said about him.  He’s lifted Kentucky Basketball to the pinnacle during this season.  Kentucky fans (myself included) are hoping that he’ll get the trifecta ~ Player of the Year, Freshman of the Year and Defensive Player of the Year.  Three or four days after that, we’re hoping that he gets MOP of the Final Four and hoists that Championship Trophy.

Davis goes down into history as one of the most talented and accomplished players in Kentucky Basketball.  All of that is possible after one year!  ONE FREAKIN’ YEAR!

If he decides that he loves it and comes back for one more, they’ll name a city after him.  I’m sure that there are babies being born all over the State of Kentucky right now being name Anthony.  Kentucky fans are just that crazy.

I’ve got friends in Thailand, Afghanistan, Scotland and Romania who are now following Davis and Kentucky Basketball.   Much of that because of the excitement surrounding the Sultan of Swat wearing blue and a BIG UNIBROW down in Lexington.

Nerlens Noel is probably giving Kentucky and Calipari more consideration because of Davis.  I’d love to see the kid come back and play beside Noel.  Then see them go one, two in the NBA Draft that year.  One can dream.

Thing is, all of this is nothing compared to the scouts evaluation of him. In a loaded class with Harrison Barnes, all eleven hundred of the Kentucky kids, Jared Sullinger, Perry Jones, and Thomas Robinson, Davis is still miles ahead of the rest in terms of ability and projected ceiling. It’s not just the production, that stuff can come from physical dominance at the college level. But it’s that his defensive instincts and determination are so high. He’s a smart, coachable player that doesn’t block just the first shot. He blocks the second shot. He blocks the third shot. To say he may be the best defensive prospect since Kevin Garnett is not an exaggeration.

THE BLOCK!

The Block heard round the world!

Anthony Davis comes through big for Marquis Teague and the Kentucky Wildcats.  With Kentucky up one point, Teague missed the front end of a one and one giving Carolina the ball with twenty seconds on the clock.

Carolina moves the ball down court.  Tyler Zeller misses the shot and pushes the rebound out to Henson.  Henson goes up for a twelve footer for the win.  Davis comes out of nowhere, blocks Hensons shot, jumps up a second time and grabs the ball out of the air.

UNC goes into shock.  They had 5 seconds left on the clock.  Plenty of time to foul.  Ice the shooter and attempt to win the game off of the next possession.  But they didn’t react.  They froze for a precious 2 seconds.

Davis passed it off to Teague who runs the ball to half court as time runs off the clock.

Game over.  Win to Kentucky!

UK 73 ~ UNC 72

GO BIG BLUE!!!

Michael O’Brien and Yellow Journalism

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Does it matter if the allegation is grounded?  Does it matter if the “rumor” destroys a young mans and his family’s reputation?

Not to the Chicago Sun Times and Michael O’Brien.

What matters is hits on the Blog or News Site.

O’Brien has destroyed Anthony Davis’ reputation.  He’s destroyed the reputation of his father.

Now.  It may come to pass that the allegations are grounded.  We’ll probably never know.

What we do know is that O’Brien printed rumors.  Supposedly he has three sources who claim that Mr. Davis demanded $200,000 in exchange for the services of his son. Well, it was $200,000 in the first iteration.  The first claim.  Now, it’s between 125,000 and 150,000 US Dollars in the new allegations by O’Brien and the Chicago Sun Times.

What is certain now is that it’s time.  Time for the UKAA to take a stand.  It’s time for accountability.

If Pat Forde is behind all of the late shenanigans as Marc Maggard claims, it’s time for Forde to be brought to heel.  Time for him to be put in his place.

Calipari bends the rules.  Thus far he’s not been proen to have broken a rule.  No major violation has been pinned to his collar.  That doesn’t stop the media from attempting to hold him accountable for everything from his players Grade School transcripts to their birth certificates.

The NCAA needs to clean up their act as well.  Streamline that megalith of a rule book and put out a guideline that makes sense.  One that actually protects the prospective Student Athlete rather than one simply designed to maintain that tax status.

After all, this system is supposed to be FOR the Student Athlete.  It’s not supposed to be simply and singularly about making the NCAA money and keeping the Executive Administrators and Coaches wealthy.

O’Brien and Forde and all of these other journalists claim that College Sports has lost it’s purity.  They blame that loss on everything under the sun.  Everything except for the primary cause is labelled a plague on College Sports.

The NCAA is the problem and the Sports Media is the enabler for this all powerful conglomeration.  The shadowy nexus of big money and byzantine rules designed to maximize profits and keep kids from breaking into that gargantuan piggy bank of multi-million dollar TV contracts and Sports Apparel Marketing.

Until the NCAA faces itself in the mirror, all of these problems are simply going to stack up like so many 15 second skeletons in Rick Pitino’s love closet.

I’m tired of it.

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I don’t know why UKAA has let it go on this long.  It’s time for real accountability.  I’m not talking

about 16 and 17 year old kids being held accountable.  It’s time to hold the adults in the big house responsible.

O’Brien, name your sources.  Anthony Davis and his father are entitled to face their accusers.  This is

America after all.  Where one is supposed to be innocent until proven guilty.  That’s simply not the case with the media.  With the commisars of the media, one is guilty until proven

innocent.  This case highlights that sad fact of life in American popular culture.

These sources are just as liable for their deceit.  Have they self reported to the NCAA or did they simply keep the ammunition for a rainy day when they could smear the recruit and the school to which he commits.  If they did not report, they are just as guilty as the school who allegedly paid the Davis family.

I’m sick and tired of these hypocrits.  It’s time to make people accountable for their words.

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