NCAA Championship 2012: Will Kentucky's John Calipari Get to Keep the Crown?

Eric EdwardsContributor IIIApril 3, 2012

Kentucky celebrates after defeating Kansas for the 2011-12 NCAA championship.
Kentucky celebrates after defeating Kansas for the 2011-12 NCAA championship.Jeff Gross/Getty Images

It was bound to happen I suppose, but I surely wasn’t looking forward to it. With Kentucky's 67-59 win over Kansas, John Calipari has won a national championship, so now the Coach Cal jock-sniffers will surely have his Hall of Fame ticket stamped.

But when it comes to John Calipari, you won’t find me among the jock-sniffers. Oh no! When it comes to the head Wildcat, I take my stand with Bobby Knight.

As much as this seems like I’m taking a whiz on the Wildcats' championship cornflakes, everyone should know that I don’t have any particular axe to grind against UK…except their choice of coach.

I know that the Calipari apologists always run the excuse that in all of the NCAA violations found in Cal’s programs in the past, he was never personally named in any of them. That’s fine if you want to stick to that weak argument, but it is about as weak as water.

I mean, that’s like saying that because no one ever saw Al Capone making hootch that he wasn’t a bootlegger!

After every successful stop on the Calipari thrill ride, the NCAA has come calling soon after—and his by-then former programs get dinged by the “watchdogs” from Indianapolis.

How can anyone say with a straight face that a coach who has had two Final Four appearances vacated at two different universities is Mr. Clean, just because he wasn’t personally named in the violations?!?

I’m not one of those guys that thinks Calipari shouldn’t get all the one-and-done players he gets, because he’s just trying to get the best talent available. That’s the way the system is set up right now, so he’s not breaking any rules in his recruiting style.

My problem is that I stand convinced that John Calipari isn’t just a rule-breaker, but a cheater. You can’t really hide behind the cloak of not being personally named when the one link between the vacation of Final Four trips at UMass and Memphis is John Calipari.

So UK fans, enjoy your title. Because if Coach Cal’s history holds you may just be giving it back!