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Kentucky Sells Its Soul to Return to College Basketball Prominence

KANSAS CITY, MO - MARCH 21:  Head Coach John Calipari of the Memphis Tigers yells and points a finger from the sideline during their second round game against the Maryland Terrapins in the NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Tournament at the Sprint Center on March 21, 2009 in Kansas City, Missouri. The Tigers defeated the Terrapins 89-70.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
Stacey MicklesCorrespondent IIMay 28, 2009

When the University of Kentucky hired John Calipari as their new men’s basketball coach, you knew it was going to be the either biggest hire in their history or one of the biggest mistakes.

 

Calipari's former school, the University of Memphis, is now being investigated for rules violations by the NCAA. To say many people were surprised would be the shocker. Most knew that hiring Calipari was taking a chance.

 

Hell, Kentucky didn’t hire him when they had the chance a few years ago, instead taking Billy Gillispie because they thought Calipari sleazy. But after Gillispie’s failure, Kentucky knew they had to make a huge hire that would please their fans base and put them back on the map

 

What better way to announce their return to the college basketball scene then by hiring Calipari?

 

You can’t convince me that Kentucky didn’t have a clue that this guy might have been involved in some shady business in Memphis. That’s probably one reason why they hired him—Calipari knows ways to get around the NCAA.

 

While at UMass, the Minutemen got in trouble because of an incident involving star player Marcus Camby and an agent. Though Calipari claims he knew nothing about the illegal doings, UMass got slapped with probation by the NCAA and had to remove their Final Four banner as well.

 

The NCAA let Calipari skate and he in turn left UMass for the NBA. But now that these allegations are coming up at Memphis, Calipari is being looked at again. Though he hasn’t been charged yet, the NCAA wants to talk to him.

 

If I’m Kentucky I’d be a little worried. Though their program has nothing to do with this, Calipari is your head coach and they are investigating Memphis. Is Kentucky that far behind?  

 

I know the Wildcats want to win, especially now that Louisville is starting to become the bigger program in that state, but Calipari seems to bring trouble wherever he goes. There have been rumblings for years that Calipari wasn’t running a clean program down in Memphis, and now the NCAA apparently has proof of that.

 

What do you do if you are Kentucky and it comes to pass that your current head coach might be involved in getting another program on probation? Do you fire him? Because the longer this goes on, more then likely the NCAA is slowly going to turn their attention to the Wildcats and question how Calipari managed to get that number one recruiting class in the country.

 

I’m not saying Kentucky deserves this because they don’t. Like any other great program out there, they just wanted to return their program to excellence. Problem is, they may have sold their souls in order for that to happen.

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