A cool memory came across my Facebook feed today; on this day in 2010, John Wall’s Sports Illustrated cover came out. The feature, written by Grant Wahl, came out days after Wall’s big game vs. Louisville and describes the phenom’s rise to meteoric rise to stardom as Calipari’s first megastar in Lexington.
Calipari knew he had the nation’s top recruit, but there were some things about Wall that he couldn’t learn until the season started. “I did not know his will to win was this strong. I had no idea,” says Calipari. “I did not know his work ethic. And I’ve been surprised.”
The anniversary of his SI cover seems especially fitting given Wall’s recent run. Wall was just named the NBA Eastern Conference Player of the Month and is averaging a double-double, with 23.5 points and 10 assists per game; that’s up almost four points from last season.
I couldn’t go down this rabbit hole without looking at all of Kentucky’s SI covers since this one. Enjoy the gallery below:
Yup, that last one still hurts a bit.