(Around the 38 minute mark, transcript below)
KSR – Earlier today, Gary Parrish told an amazing story about John Calipari on his radio show on 92.9 FM in Memphis. Parrish told a story about how Cal stole a recruit from another coach and when the coach started spreading rumors about him, Cal confronted him about it, telling him that because he’s Cal and it’s Kentucky, it’s going to happen, so deal with it.
Here’s the prologue in short: Parrish says there was a prominent coach within the last three years that had been recruiting a kid hard, attended over thirty of his games over two years, etc. Calipari came in after seeing the kid once the previous summer and watched him play one game. The recruit then committed to Kentucky.
That’s not the craziest part. According to Parrish, the coach started spreading rumors about how Cal must have cheated to get the recruit, that he barely knew his name, etc. So, Cal confronted the coach in Vegas.
Parrish recounts the story, which he says he heard from five different sources:
“100% true, John confronts this guy in Vegas, because he heard the guy was yapping. He confronts him. Cal approaches the coach and says something like ‘Listen, I know what you’ve been saying’
‘No, I haven’t been saying–‘
‘I know you did, I know you said what you said. I’ve heard it from enough people, but I want you to understand one thing. Yes I am the type of guy who can come in at the last minute and take any player I want from you. You can spend your whole life recruiting a kid and at the end of the day, if I want him, I’ll get him. If we want him, we’ll get him. Don’t ever get that confused. Be appreciative every time I don’t come in and get your guy. Don’t accuse me of cheating when I do.
‘I didn’t say–‘
‘Yes you did say that. And it’s fine, but just understand, nothing stupid went on. It’s just that I’m me, and we’re Kentucky and we can come in and get that kid whenever we want.”
Such an awesome Calipari story. Who knows how true these anecdotes that pop up are, but if I’m just going with my gut here, shooting straight from the hip, I’d put my confidence in the accuracy of this story around 99.999-100%. Just seems like something Cal would do. And who could blame him? Guy has college basketball by the balls. The best recruiting, the best teams, year after year after year. Sure it would have been nice for him to actually seal the deal and bring home a ‘ship with an undefeated team, but whatever, he’s getting paid, he’s getting all his kids drafted as lottery picks. Bottom line is all you little peon coaches who want recruits of your own…best run it by Cal first. He’s Kentucky and he can come in and get that kid whenever the fuck he wants.