John Calipari Is A Cheat. Who Knew?

5/28/2009 7:58:22 AM From the NO SHIT Department comes a story on ESPN about alleged recruiting violations at the University of Memphis. Anyone who follows college basketball should be nodding their head knowingly at this news.  Calipari's stellar recruiting record is well known.  What's also well known is the wreckage he leaves behind after he departs from a school.

Let's go back to the 90's.  UMass hadn't been relevant since the early 1970's when Julius Erving starred for the Minutemen.  In comes the "savior" John Calipari with recurits like Marcus Camby and Donta Bright (from Baltimore no less).  UMass gets to the Final Four in 1995.  Calipari soon leaves for the NBA and UMass gets put on probation soon after.

Well now history is repeating itself.  Memphis, their alumni, and fans will now have to deal with the mountain of violations that Calipari has left in his wake.  The allegations include a player who cheated on his SAT (Derrick Rose) and thousands of dollars in paid travel expenses.  I'll bet those two charges are just the tip of the iceberg.

If guilty, the NCAA needs to the right thing.  Memphis should and will be punished; but what will happen to Calipari?  He's now in his new safe haven in Lexington, KY.  In the spirit of Bill Maher, I will submit to you my New Rule for the NCAA:  When a coach has destroyed the reputation of two universities and has routinely cheated and skirted the rules whenever possible; he needs to banned from the coaching profession for LIFE.  I'm calling it "The Fool Me Once, Shame On Me; Fool Me Twice, Shame On You" Corollary.

Who's with me?

The report goes on to say that there are no allegations against Mr. Calipari.  Of course.  It's just a coincidence that wherever Calipari seems to coach, these things happen.  He also coincidentally skips town just before the allegations hit.  Amazing.

In my humble opinion, this is the NCAAs "steroid" moment.  In the late 90's and early 00's; Baseball knew that steroids were becoming  a huge problem and they chose to do nothing.  Recruiting violations are so rampant in college basketball yet the coaches continue to get away with it.  The NCAA needs to do the right thing and throw Calipari out of the profession.  Let him be an assistant on the Clippers or something.

If the NCAA thinks that this is just an unfortunate incident, they are in for a rude awakening.  Have they looked at their product lately?  College Basketball is now dominated by coaches who are great recruiters, not great game strategists.  The result has been a poorer product on the floor.

This year's Tournament was the worst on record in my opinion.  So many ugly games and poorly coached teams.

Terp fans can criticze Gary Williams all they want, but he has not come close to committing a violation in his 20 years in College Park.  His inability to recruit has a much to do with who he competes against (Calipari, et.al) as it does with his personal aversion to it.
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