Ricky Jones, a regular Hey Kentucky! personality and a friend of the KSR program, stood up for Rick Pitino and Tom Jurich in a column in the Courier-Journal today. Jones believes Pitino and Jurich were treated unfairly in the aftermath of the FBI’s college basketball investigation, calling it, “total BS,” in hindsight.
Here, have an excerpt:
Can we be real for a moment? Pitino and Jurich weren’t dismissed because they were shiftless ne’er-do-wells. They were professionally assassinated largely because of the ego trips of a small number of members of an illegally appointed university board of trustees shoved down the school’s throat by Kentucky Gov. Matthew Bevin, who then used an underperforming, mendacious interim president as their shill.
One of the ringleaders of this crew, bubbling over with integrity and having the “best interests” of the University of Louisville at heart, was Papa John Schnatter. Yes, one of the country’s best athletic directors who had, arguably, done more to move the school forward than any single individual in the last 20 years and a legendary basketball coach who had been a great teacher, mentor and lifelong advocate for his players were ousted because of the great decision making and insight of … PAPA JOHN! Let that one sink in for a minute. [Courier-Journal]
You will never catch me defending Pitino or Jurich, but I do agree with another one of Jones’ points: the NCAA painted Louisville as the slimiest and dirtiest of all athletic programs, but has ignored the wrongdoings at North Carolina, Arizona, LSU and others. On that note, even I can side with Louisville.
Read all of Jones’ strong thoughts on the matter here.