Up until recently, I’ve always liked Rick Pitino. Growing up in New York, I couldn’t help but root for him as an obscure assistant under Hubie Brown with the struggling New York Knicks.
He was animated, even back then as a Hubie protégé.
When he flourished as a head coach, he carried a swagger that seemed earned. It was part Italian swagger, part basketball whiz kid.
Rick also has been a generous guy with a huge heart. He has always been involved with charities with genuine motivation.
He and his wife have endured all sorts of tragedies and health issues. To me, Rick always seemed like a stand-up guy. I respected him for his personality as much as his accomplishments.
This background is what makes the extortion case involving Rick, his long time friend and equipment manager Tim Sypher, and his wife Karen Sypher all the more puzzling and disturbing.
We won’t re-hash all the details but to put this in perspective, Rick had been banging Karen presumably for years but she married Tim (presumably Tim did not mind sharing with his boss).
This is where the tale gets cloudy, At some point either Karen or Tim or both he and his wife hatched a plot to extort Rick of millions, hanging his dirty laundry over his head as incentive.
Regardless of what the actual facts are, we can say for sure that this tangled web of sex, lies, and basketball has some basis in reality. You can’t make stuff like this up. At the least, Rick has been exposed as a horndog.
If we take this at face value, it is not that big a deal. Bill Belichick is well known for his horndog activities, yet he is not seen as a discredit to his profession.
No reason to believe Rick’s newfound horndog label will drag down his career. It shouldn’t, but who knows how the finicky powers that be will react to this episode.
Being human, Rick is not the first coach or sports personality to take advantage of his money and power to reel in a piece of meat for his selfish pleasures. We can’t fault him for having those urges, but what we can fault him for is his tactics.
Really, Rick, is this woman the best you can do? Who is the woman at issue? She is a floozy Tim Sypher presumably met in a fast food parking lot.
My first reaction to that is “what are you doing eating fast food to begin with, you desperate bowling ball belly slob”
She must have seemed like one heck of a woman to bring into their tight knit basketball family. Of course, that notion is out the window now. We can presume she was only after money after all.
On the surface we can blame Tim and Rick for being shameful and stupid with their actions, whatever they might be and only they really know. The rest of us get the gist. That’s enough to make us all sick to our stomach.
I really don’t care that basketball coaches are on the road so much with recruiting and games and whatever else that they indulge in fast food. Maybe they all want the Rick Majerus look. I’m sure their paunches make them proud.
Let’s just trace the flow of events in a casual sense.
Tim picks up a floozy in a parking lot, brings her to his boss who bangs her in a restaurant (how Rick managed to do that is a mystery). Then Rick hands her back to his friend Tim who makes her his wife.
Then they all end up in court because none of them can handle the web of lies and deceit nor the backstage lifestyle they developed for themselves.
Now all of this dirty laundry is public domain. Nice going, guys.