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 Basketball and Racism

Tubby Smith is not doing so well at Minnesota.  Soon, he’ll be on the hot seat.  When that happens, the media and others will start talking about his time at Kentucky again.  Inevitably, they’ll drag Kentucky over the coals again.  Kentucky fans will be called racists again.

They’ll ignore the fact that we actually did want Billy Gillispie fired after a mere two seasons.  Gillispie is white.  So, that doesn’t fit the stereotype.  If Kentucky fans wanted Billy G gone after two years and gave Tubby nearly a decade to get it together, well, that doesn’t fit the agenda.  That makes it seem that Kentucky fans are simply crazy in a basketball sports fan manner.  It kills the idea that Kentucky fans hated Tubby Smith simply because he was Black.  That won’t do.  The hurts the media agenda to paint Kentucky and it’s fans as backward, unrepentant racist who wish for nothing more than a return to Jim Crow.

We can’t have that.  What would Michael Wilbon whine about?  How will he justify his rants against Kentucky fans?  Dick Vitale would have to admit that Tubby Smith actually failed at UK and his over emotional, lunatic rants and pleas were over the top and unwarranted.

We can’t have that.  That would require an admission of error.  Heaven forbid!

The racist thing is overplayed in America today.

For instance, the starting 5 at UK are African American. The Starting 5 at UK has been African American for the most part for over 20 years. Kentuckians get behind these kids wholeheartedly.

Somehow, these same fans who love Black kids who actually play the game hate a Black Coach simply because he’s BLACK.

HUH!?!

How is that possible?

Tubby didn’t measure up. It had absolutely nothing to do with his skin color.

Those same “racist” fans turned on Billy Gillispie faster than they turned on Tubby Smith. Billy G is a white guy. So, do Kentuckians hate white people as well or do they dislike losing ten games a year and consistent team turmoil.

Could it be that what they wanted was a winning coach who understood the passion that they have for Kentucky Basketball. Kentucky Basketball is supposed to run the fast break in a way that makes Kentucky Derby thoroughbreds look like snails in hibernation.

That wasn’t Tubby ball. Ball Line D was and is boring. Especially when Tubby is recruiting scrubs out of Canada and Fordham to run it. THAT was the rub. 99% of Kentucky fans couldn’t have cared less about the skin color of Tubby. If the guy would have come in and rolled like Pitino or Calipari, they’d be naming their kids Tubby and Orlando. These same Cat fans bitched and moaned about Joe B. Hall for the whole damn time that he was there. Joe B, Hall made 3 Final Fours and won a Championship with his own team.

That is not to say that Kentucky doesn’t have its share of racists. Then again….so does Minnesota and every other state in America.

I don’t know how anyone can say with a straight face that the people who love John Wall, Anthony Davis, MKG, Jamaal Mashburn, Derek Anderson, Jamaal Magloire Demarcus Cousins and Jack Goose Givens, Chuck Hayes, Patrick Patterson and the football talent that is Randall Cobb hates Tubby Smith due solely to his skin color.

That won’t stop the media from standing by their lies and erroneous assertions.

Minnesota will eventually fire Tubby Smith unless he decides to retire after this year.  When that happens, the reason will have nothing to do with Smiths race.  It will be his record and his inability to take the Gophers to the next level.  When you pay a Coach a Top 20 Salary, you expect Top 20 results.  That’s the bottom line.

Minnesota is not getting Top 20 results from Tubby Smith.  Smith, thought, seems to believe that this money is his due based on past results.  He won a Championship in 1998.  Because of that, Tubby seems to believe that Minnesota should give him a BIG PAYCHECK regardless of results AT MINNESOTA.

Smith is no longer capable of Top 20 results.  He hasn’t been for some time.  Minnesota is slowly coming to this realization.  Too late, though.  They’ve wasted 4 years and nearly 8 Million dollars learning what Kentucky learned in Tubbys last 2 or 3 years.

Minnesota deserves this, though.  They arrogantly assumed that they were getting the Tubby of the 1990s.  Fasinatingly similar to Louisville and their hiring of Pitino.  UL thought that they were getting the Pitino of the 90s.  They didn’t.  He’s not.  Neither of them are.

There’s a lesson there.

CATS ADVANCE! Slick Rick and the Tards Sent Home Early.

I don’t care who you are.  That’s funny.

Does Ricky P still love his team?  HAHAHAHA

Kentucky Advances…BARELY!

Knights Only Basket Saves the Day!

Kentucky escapes with a 59-57 victory over the Tigers of Princeton.  I’m watching the score on the internet during the game.  I’m in Hanoi.  Can’t see the game.  Can’t get it on the internet.  All I can get is Yahoo Sports Game In Progress.  I was going insane.

Had to leave for the Airport with Ten Minutes to go.  Had no idea if they won until I got to the Business Class Lounge and hooked up to the Net.  Elated.  Freakin’ elated that they won.  Almost happy I didn’t get to watch this one.  lol  It would have been a a ball buster to have to sit through this one.  I might have destroyed my TV.

GO CATS!  Survive and Advance.  Two points up is better than 2 points down.

GO BIG BLUE!!!

I still can’t believe that the Tards lost to Morehead.  I’m still laughing my ass off.

Coach Calipari, the Ex-UK Coach Media Circus and NCAA inanity.

Mike DeCourcy on the troubles of Billy Gillispie, Rick Pitino and John Calipari:

2. So the Bluegrass State has the Pitino deal, the cloud hanging over UK coach John Calipari stemming from alleged violations at Memphis, and former Wildcats coach Billy Gillispie gets a DUI charge.

Can you rank them in order of who created the biggest PR nightmare for himself? Quote: DeCourcy:

No. 1 is obviously Gillispie. He already had two DUIs in his past from several years ago, plus the difficult tenure while he coached UK. In order to get back into college coaching, he needed to keep his record clean and allow athletic administrators to remember he once had terrific success at Texas A&M and UTEP, two difficult jobs. It is not going to be easy for him to become a college head coach again.

No. 2 is Pitino. The circumstances that led to him facing an alleged extortion attempt were outside the boundaries of good behavior and good taste — and then he exacerbated the problem by blaming the media for how much trouble they were causing his family. Well, that fooled no one. Radio talk shows in the state buzzed Wednesday night with callers pointing out it was Pitino who, with his admitted infidelity, caused whatever problems exist under his roof.

Calipari? He recruited Derrick Rose, whom any coach in America would have loved to sign, and played him after the NCAA approved his eligibility. What exactly was it he did wrong?

DeCourcy is dead on.

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Rick Pitino created this whole problem.  Rick brought the roof in over his own head.  He had extra-marital sex.  He covered it up.  This is a scandal of his own creation.  His own poor decision making cycle come full circle to bite him  in his ass.

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Billy Gillispie.  The only guy who pisses me off more than Tubby Smith and his merry band of worshipers.  After 9 or 10 years of Tubby, I knew that there was absolutely no hope of UK ever reaching the Final Four.  Gillispie came in with fire and I really thought he was going to make things happen.  Then he goes off the deep end.  Forcing players to sit in toilet stalls and walk home alone from games and berating players so much so that they lose confidence.  The only man who would tell Jodie Meeks to not shoot.  What an idiot.

Now this idiot.  In the middle of negotiations, that heretofore, he was winning.  He grabs himself a DUI.  Consider the lawsuit all but over.  Gillispie will be lucky to walk away with 500 Grand and that is just so he’ll go away.  UKAA should put a clause in that states that Gillispie can never utter, write or even think the words/thoughts “UK”, Kentucky, University of Kentucky, Kentucky Basketball or mention his tenure at the University.  He must omit the years 2007-2008 and 2008-2009 from his resume and is not permitted to explain the omission to future prospective employers.   Lastly, he should never again be able to enter the Commonwealth of Kentucky or play against any SEC school at the Division 1 Level.

They should burn this guy.  And then burn him in effigy.  August 27th should become a Statewide day of celebration during which Billy Gillispie paper mache’ dolls are burned in effigy each year across the commonwealth.

What an idiot!

https://i1.wp.com/johnclay.bloginky.com/files/2009/05/calipari8.jpgThen we have John Calipari.  Recruited Derick Rose.  Check.  The NCAA granted him eligibility.  Check.  Then Calipari played Rose on a team that broke records and made it to the Championship game.

THEN…the NCAA–the National Collection of Asinine Assholes–comes back a year later and states that “OOPs!  We made a mistake!  But, it’s not our mistake.  It’s the fault of Memphis!”  And they want to enforce strict accountability on Memphis.  But not on Duke.  Not on the sacred cow named Coach K.  And definitely not on the Holy One on High.  The Holy of Holies.  Coach John Wooden.  Not on Pete Carrol.  Only on the little guys at the little schools or the schools with Administrations that don’t fight back.

The NCAA is full of cowards.  Memphis needs to fight.  They need to file a lawsuit.

And the rest of the member schools need to join that fight.  Especially the small schools.  Duke boosters can provide housing and jobs for Duke Athletes.  UCLA can have open and rampant cheating.  USC can have guys being paid hundreds of thousands of dollars.  Duke can have championship runs with Corey Maggette who admitted to taking money from his AAU coach while an “amateur.”  But that’s not Coach K’s fault.  He had no way of knowing.  Duke had no way of knowing.

But somehow, Memphis was supposed to know that Rose had a guy take a test for him in Detroit, MI.

I guess Memphis should have escorted Rose to his test.  But then that would have violated contact rules.

Damned if you do and damned if you don’t.

The NCAA is full of shit and so are half of the reporters out there who are calling for Calipari to be “punished” by the NCAA.

Billy Gillispie is out. IT IS OFFICIAL.

“RESPECT ME!  I’m on the phone.”

What the hell was that?

By Jerry Tipton and Ryan Alessi / jtipton@herald-leader.com

On his first full day in Lexington, Billy Gillispie stood grinning in front of thousands of adoring University of Kentucky fans who came to an impromptu pep rally in Memorial Coliseum. He bathed in Big Blue love before going to a news conference introducing him as UK basketball coach.

Despite that outpouring of affection, Gillispie found himself fired two years later because his UK bosses did not believe he understood the nature of his job and its connection with fans.

” … Dedicated and passionate fans deserve a coach that understands that this is not just another coaching job,” Athletics Director Mitch Barnhart said in reading a statement at another news conference on Friday.

Winning and losing didn’t end Gillispie’s time as coach after two seasons, although his .597 winning percentage was the the worst for a UK coach since Basil Hayden’s one-season 3-13 record in 1926-27.

Ironically, failing to connect with those around him cost Gillispie his job. Ironic because in his time here, Gillispie repeatedly emphasized the importance of building relationships.

“We obviously did not achieve the results we all desired on the floor this season,” Barnhart said of UK’s 22-14 record. “Those results can occur when you are trying to grow a program. We clearly understand that.

“However, it is as important to represent the Kentucky program and the basketball program, more specifically, in a manner which best utilizes our incredible tradition, assets and platform. …

“It is my evaluation that we have not done all we can to manage the entire scope of the program and all that we expect.”

UK President Lee T. Todd echoed that reasoning. He said he spoke to Gillispie during protracted — and ultimately futile — contract negotiations about the public nature of the job.

“It’s kind of like the president’s job,” Todd said. “Nobody really writes out exactly what you have to do. Philosophically, we wanted someone that represented the entire Big Blue Nation. … This is a unique opportunity, a very unique job.”

Gillispie did not answer reporters’ questions. Holding a cell phone to his ear, he walked through raindrops in and out of Wildcat Lodge to tell the players the news and then the Craft Center to clean out his office.

Gillispie and his assistant coaches had reason to be busy. In what suggested a good-riddance sentiment, UK asked them to pack up their belongings and leave their offices by 5 p.m. (about three hours after Gillispie learned his fate in a meeting at Todd’s official residence).

The Southeastern Conference Tournament served as a stage to expose how differently Gillispie and his bosses viewed the UK job.

Gillispie, who saw celebrity as a hindrance, said the UK coach must recruit great players and coach them. Period. He did not embrace the suggestion of also being an ambassador, which showed itself in his first pre-season when he did not speak to the Lexington Rotary Club, something his predecessors did annually dating back to at least the 1950s.

Barnhart, who called fan interest in UK basketball a “cradle-to-grave love,” noted how fans drove to Omaha, Neb., earlier this week to watch the Cats play Creighton in the National Invitation Tournament.

“There is a clear difference in how the rules and responsibilities overseeing the program are viewed,” Barnhart said. “It is a gap that I do not believe can be solved by just winning games. It is a philosophical disparity that I do not believe can be repaired.”

Todd and Barnhart also spoke of their desire for coaches to provide a rewarding experience for the athletes.

The father of leading scorer Jodie Meeks suggested that Gillispie’s demanding style was distracting, if not a hindrance.

“You don’t want to throw gasoline on the flames, but, clearly, a lot of things happened behind the scenes that made it difficult for the kids to play basketball and focus on winning,” Orestes Meeks said.

Of his relationship with Gillispie, the elder Meeks cited his son’s UK record 54-point performance at Tennessee on Jan. 13.

“I got calls from every coach he ever had: baseball, basketball, all of them,” Meeks’ father said. “Except his current coach. His current coach never called. That said a lot to me. … ”

“When you start placing blame, tell them when the ship misses the harbor, do they blame the harbor?” Orestes Meeks. “I don’t think it’s anybody’s fault but his own.”

Originally, Gillispie and UK had a whirlwind romance consummated with a hiring in the first 24 hours. Without mentioning those details, Barnhart acknowledged his surprise at the unhappy ending.

“This is not a place I thought we would be at this point, or one that I would want to be,” the UK athletics director said. “However, after long and deliberate discussions, President Todd and I have decided we must charter a new direction for the University of Kentucky men’s basketball program. Unfortunately there are times when a situation and the people involved do not create the right chemistry or right fit. It is our belief that is where we are and where we find ourselves with Kentucky basketball today.”

Barnhart said he and Todd have talked for a month about “dramatic differences” in how the administrators and the coach view the job of coach. Gillispie’s comments at the SEC Tournament about the job’s public component not being in the “job description” seemingly sealed his fate.

After denying any regrets in the hire, Barnhart said, “He’s a good basketball coach. Sometimes it’s not the right fit.”

I Blame it all on Tubby!  Especially this…

INDIANAPOLIS — Ah, now I know why Kentucky fired Billy Gillispie.

Turns out, he wasn’t Rick Pitino.

Say what you want about the rabid nature of the Wildcats’ basketball fans, but after all these years, that’s really all they want. And is it so much to ask?

They want a slick, sharp coach on the bench. They want him to unleash a team such as the Cardinals upon the rest of college basketball like Huns attacking the Great Wall. They want to break the scoreboard, demoralize the opposition and serve notice upon the field.

Most of all, they want possibilities.

Frankly, they want to be Louisville.

And if you know a Kentucky basketball fan, you know how painful that must be to admit.

Tell me. Short of a scandal or three, has there ever been a worse day to be a Kentucky fan? First of all, Gillispie was fired in disgrace, which either came much too early (the prevailing national opinion) or much too late (the overwhelming viewpoint of the Wildcat faithful). Then, before you can dribble a ball the length of a court, their designated next-guy, Billy Donovan, flatly turned them down … again. Evidently, having two years to reconsider didn’t change a thing for Donovan.

Then, after all that, they had to withstand this:

Louisville, the new team of Kentucky’s old coach, looks a lot like a champion-in-waiting.

The Cardinals were darned near perfect against Arizona on Friday. They ran, they shot, they passed, they defended, they rebounded. They drubbed Arizona 103-64, the most points Louisville has scored in an NCAA Tournament game. If it hadn’t been for a late burst of mercy, the 39-point margin might have been 60.

For one night, at least, the Cardinals had the look of greatness. They are so deep, so skilled. The players come at an opponent all at once, and all can dribble, and all can shoot. They dunk, and it is like hearing an airplane break the sound barrier. It is difficult to tell guards from forwards or subs from starters. Stopping them is like trying to hold back a flood with a sponge.

Want to know how wonderful the Cardinals were? Just ask Pitino, who sounded like Roger Ebert at a foreign film festival.

“Fabulous,” Pitino said.

“Brilliant,” he said.

“Dominating,” he added.

So it went. Pitino, 56, also said “tremendous” and “great” and “terrific” and “beautiful” and “unselfish.” You kept waiting for him to give his team an enthusiastic thumbs-up. For the record, Pitino also suggested that humility was very, very important.

The thing is, who is going to disagree? The Cardinals shot 57 percent from the floor, and 93 percent from the free-throw line, and they outrebounded Arizona, and they had 29 assists to only nine turnovers. It looked as if everyone else was playing one game of basketball, and the Cardinals were playing something better, something more pure.

Did anyone see a flaw? Oh, Pitino apologized for the final dunks of the game, but they were just exclamation points on a paragraph. The message already had been sent.

Who is going to stop Louisville if the Cards play this close to capacity? Pitt? North Carolina? Connecticut?

Anyone?

“It’s going to be hard to beat them if they play like that,” Arizona coach Russ Pennell said. “I think it has to be someone who has the quickness to really put pressure against their fullcourt press. Yet Louisville kind of preys upon people who do that.”

For the opponent, that’s the conundrum. For the Cardinals, it is matching their own excellence.

“We know we’re not going to play like this again,” Pitino said, “because of the types of defenses we’re going to run into now. It’s going to be a totally different type of game. We did a great job getting second shots tonight. Michigan State and Kansas don’t give you those.

“Guys, we all know we’re one game from the Final Four. We’re three games from the national championship. I think this team has stayed grounded. Their egos are in check. I’ll find something to be upset about. We’re not going to fall in love with ourselves because we had a good game. We understand what we’re up against.”

In the old days, back before the Wildcats were in a snit — you spell it with an “N” and an “I” and a “T” — coaches at Kentucky used to talk like that. They, too, played like a regal team about to storm the castle. They, too, looked like the team to beat.

As for that brunet in the fifth row cheering on the Cardinals?

No, that wasn’t Ashley Judd.

Was it?

If Tubby had left to the Hawks, UK could have hired Pitino and all would have been right in the Big Blue Nation.  Instead, Tubby waits until he’s decimated the team to leave.  Mitch screws up and makes a bad hire and Lee Todd steps in and fires him.

One could blame CM Newton for making the wrong hire.  He hired the wrong assistant.  Instead of hiring Billy D back in 97, he hired the guy who would be the cause of the storm now crashing through the Big Blue Nation.

Oh, and by the way, UL is on the way to the Final Four and probably a Championship.  lol

It could be worse.  The moon could crash into the sun tonight.  haha

This all sounds like a really bad Univision Soap Opera from Mexico.

This one is for you Billy G:

Billy Gillispie has been fired! Huh?

That’s the word I’m hearing from some pretty solid sources.

Actually, I was hearing that Gillispie will not be fired.  If G leaves, it’s going to be more of a split due to irreconcilable differences.  A mutual decision to part ways.  I’m sure there will be a buy out involved.

UK is jumping into the abyss.

I’ve also been told the following:

The player mutiny is nonsense rumor mill tripe.  Certainly, there are a couple of players who dislike Gillispie.  Meeks and Patterson are NOT those couple of players.  Meeks and Patterson are not considering the jump to the League because of Coach G.  They support G and are declaring or not declaring based upon their draft status.  They will decide based upon real world criteria and not the fantasies of internet rumor mongers and the media.  The players who won’t be coming back are guys who shouldn’t be coming back.  The Carruth wannabees.  Think AJ and Deandre.  Team Cancers.  From what I’ve been told AJ doesn’t see the purpose or value of an education.  He hasn’t lived in his dorm for most of the season.  Krebs has been all by his lonesome.  Liggins is another problem child.  Think that Vegas trip was his only refusal to go in a game.  Think again.  He’s supposedly done it throughout SEC play as well.  Deandre is playing the game right now.  The only way that he’ll be back is if he continues his change of attitude.  If he doesn’t convince G [or the next coach], he’ll not be returning.  Supposedly, he’s been a real challenge this season and I have a hard time understanding why G has put up with it.  Don’t be surprised if both AJ and Deandre are sitting on some other bench next year.

Folks who are concerned about the contract and why BCG hasn’t signed it.  Some think it’s the clause that sets down the criteria for BCG to be fired.  Some think it has to do with charitable contributions and foundations that is the sticking point.  Others are saying that it has to do with a “personal life” clause.  I’m hearing that such is not the case.  Word on the wind is that it’s the same clause that kept Billy D away.  Apparently, Mitch wants final say on recruiting offers.  He wants final word or veto power concerning recruits.  BCG [and most other Coaches who are worth a damn] will not agree to this.  Coaches should have final say in recruiting.  As long as the guy meets NCAA guidelines, BCG and almost any other coach should have the final say in recruiting.  Not the AD.  This isn’t the NBA and the AD is not the General Manager.  Apparently, Mitch thinks that everyone is as inept a recruiter as TLT.  There seems to be more than this but that’s all I got.

Last thing, the media is brewing this storm because of their personal distaste for BCG.  My opinion on that is screw the media.  Not everyone needs to be at their beck and call and on bended knee.  The media does ask stupid questions that are a waste of time.  And the media picks it’s heros and it’s villains based upon who kisses up to them.  Sycophants like Coach K get all the good press.  Any coach who doesn’t kiss their collective asses gets bad press.  Wooden was a God.  Despite his teams being bought and paid for by a booster.  USC gets a free pass in Football.  UNLV and UK get burned because Rupp and the towel biter didn’t play their game.  Apparently, Matt Jones has a hard on for BCG because Matty was not treated with kid gloves by BCG at an early press conference.  If so, Matt has a pretty large ego.  He’s a freakin’ blogger.  He’s not a real media figure.  He’s lucky he gets a media pass.  That’s funny, though.  Matt Jones was the biggest Tubby Homer on the planet.  Almost as big a homer as the guy who runs A Sea of Blue.

On the recruiting front.  If BCG is fired, UK better hit a GRAND SLAM on the coaching hire or Daniel Orton is gone.  Larry Orton was being polite when he stated that Daniel Orton would reconsider his options if BCG was fired.  I’m told that there is no chance that Daniel comes to UK if BCG is not the coach.  “Zero. Actually, less than zero.”  Is what I’m told.

There is also the tale being told that the UKAA canvassed the players.  Asking if they’d return if BCG was fired.  I guess they are weighing their options.  Fire Billy and these guys leave/stay.  Don’t fire Billy and these guys leave/stay.  Jockeying for leverage in contract negotiations?  Trying to gauge how hard the program will be hit with a BCG firing.  UKAA has to know that they will hurt the program by firing BCG this year.  Allowing the pressure to build, though, allows them to have maximum leverage in contract negotiations.  Playing hardball, I reckon.   Mitch not making a statement of support allows the pressure to build.  He apparently thinks this will aid him in the negotiations after the season and will allow them to get the concessions they desire.  Will Gillispie give that much control over recruiting to the AD.  I don’t think any coach would do that.  I think Billy G will allow some contract concessions such as making the hand shake circuit and being nicer to the media.  But ceding recruiting decisions to the AD, I don’t think it will happen.  BCG and any coach that UK will want will walk away from that deal.

The last thing that I’ve heard is that it’s all over.  The “that’s not in my job description” statement was the straw that broke Billy’s back.  Billy has supposedly been told that he will not be returning next season.  The players are said to know as well.  But they supposedly “demanded” that he be allowed to coach them through the NIT.  The word is that there is an anointed individual in the wings and he’s still in the Tournament now.  Calipari?  Pitino?  Wright?  Dixon?  I don’t know.

So that’s the latest that I’ve heard.  Could all of that be true?  If it is, this program is a mess.  Perhaps, it’s time to part ways with Mitch unless he has some magic up his sleeve that puts UK in the Final Four in 2010 or 2011.  This whole mess is inexcusable.  From the TLT departure catching him off guard to the Billy D fiasco to this mess with Billy G.  Does Barnhart have a clue?  I’m beginning to think that he does not.

Just things I’ve heard around the water cooler.  I’m no one to whom anyone should pay any heed.  After Kentucky plays the last game of the season, somethings going to happen.  I don’t even think G and Mitch knows for certain what that might be.  No one else knows for sure either.  That’s simply my opinion.