Absolutely brutal news coming out today with the reported passing of John Chaney. We use the term legend quite loosely and quite often. That's not the case here. John Chaney is a legend, not just in college basketball, not just in Philly, but in all of basketball. The man dominated high school basketball in Pennsylvania, went 232-56 at Division II Cheyney State and then had a Hall of Fame career at Temple. The man has a career 741-312 record. Absurd numbers all around. He became just the 19th coach to coach 1,000 games in 2004. He was Temple basketball, even with all the talent he had there.
I grew up just an hour and a half from Philly and even with that distance, Chaney's status was felt. Coaches across the area wanted to adapt his style. Obviously Temple recruited all within the state so you'd hear rumblings of him talking to kids and how he'd turn them into men and good basketball players. That's who Chaney was and pretty much remembered as throughout the state, especially in Philly. Basketball and Philly is a unique thing too. It's a basketball crazy town from the youth level to the Big 5 to the Sixers. Tons of talent come from there and Chaney was always a guy who Philly people rallied around.
Then there's the clip. You know which one I'm talking about:
A coach walking in to another coach’s press conference and threatening his literal life is so goddamn funny. To then slowly lessen the threats to “I’m gonna kick your ass” to finally “One of my players is going to punch your players in the fucking mouth” is even funnier. Especially since, everyone in that room believed every word that Chaney was saying. Again, this was Chaney. You could make him laugh in a second and you could send him into a fit of rage in a second. Chaney and Calipari actually became great friends years after this.
RIP to a legend.