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A “not real coachable” moment

Cal’s comments on Saturday after the game about some of his players being “not real coachable” haven’t quite faded away, despite his best efforts. If you watched the game, it’s hard not to know to whom Cal was referring, especially when you watched the body language from the players. There was one moment that stuck out more than the rest to me: an interaction between Calipari and Alex Poythress after Poythress fouled Jarnell Stokes and Willie Cauley-Stein received a technical foul for shoving Trae Golden. Watch the video below, especially at the 1:01:20 mark:

Three things interest me:

1) This interaction happened after Cal addressed the team in a huddle, which means either Cal had more to say to Poythress or Poythress said something Cal didn’t like as he walked away.

2) Ryan Harrow attempts to hold Cal back, and afterwards, comforts Poythress

3) Alex looks disgusted and defeated.

You can hear Ian Eagle say that Poythress fouling Stokes and Willie’s technical might have been a good thing because he would see “a little bit of fire, a little bit of unity and togetherness” from his players, but the interaction between Cal and Alex suggests anything but that.

This morning on the SEC Coaches’ Teleconference, Cal further explained his postgame comments, drawing a distinction between what he may tell a player during a game and how that differs from what he may say after the heat of the battle:

“First of all, let’s go to the context. During a game, on the bench, there are a lot of things I say that, if a guy is not listening, is not playing rough enough, isn’t coming up with 50-50 balls, there’s a lot of things I say. But this team is a team of a bunch of good guys. They want to do well. Some of this is overwhelming. We just lost our best player. And why a guy wouldn’t listen or why he is going out and not doing what we ask him to do, we’re just trying to say, ‘Hey man, listen to what we’re saying. You can’t play the way you’re playing.’ But like I said, I’ve got a group of good kids. We are very young. We are treading new water. It wasn’t like a postgame tirade. That’s not what this was. This was during the game that we’re talking about. Guys got to listen better.”

Was the interaction between Poythress and Cal just frustrations boiling over?

Article written by Mrs. Tyler Thompson

No, I will not make you a sandwich, but you can follow me on Twitter @MrsTylerKSR or email me.

56 Comments for A “not real coachable” moment

  1. DoubleZeroMostel
    5:46 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    The thought of Ryan Harrow holding someone back makes me smile. Ryan couldn’t hold back a fart in church.

  2. mocha
    5:47 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    this is interesting, didn’t notice during the actual game.

  3. hersheyisabear
    5:48 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    He meant what he said. Just trying to come back on his word to settle the mood down. Coach is not wrong at all with his statement.

  4. uk blue
    5:48 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    Really? cal you need to bech his butt and tell him thats where he will be rest season and take his aZZZZZZZ back home hes never gonna make nothing in nba he dont want to listen. close this chapter of kentucky basket ball play the reserves just saying

  5. jim jim
    5:48 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    this team sucks !

  6. Big Blue 66
    5:49 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    these young guys dont understand alot of things about life, but they better understand that if Cal tells agents and scounts that these guys are probs and dont listen, they will drop even in a weak draft. Cal saying these guys are uncoachable will drop them more than their play will.

  7. Italian UK Fan
    5:53 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    LaFamilia. Dad showing frustration with kids!

  8. MANIA
    5:57 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    I thought Cal asked Ryan to leave the team until he learned to stop hugging the other players?

  9. classof68
    5:59 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    It just looks like Poythress thinks he’s too cool to get his hands dirty. You can see it in his body language, attitude, and the way he plays. I really hope some NBA team drafts him (and Goodwin). If you could buy them for what they’re worth and sell them for what they think they’re worth – you could make a lot of money.

  10. JD
    6:01 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    It’s one thing to be upset about playing poorly, but don’t come on here and start bashing these KIDS. That is what they are, kids learning how to play college basketball. It’s just a game, but there is no reason to come on here and bash them. This is coming from one of the most die hard fans you will find.

  11. The Entire State
    6:07 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink


    Please smack Poythress in the face on behalf of the entire state. And then send him directly to Rio Grande Valley to begin wasting away where your most recent overrated malcontent (Terrence Jones) is also wasting away.

    The Bluegrass State

  12. Branjovi
    6:12 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    Why did AP go flying in the air and land on his side? I am still trying to figure that out.

  13. SeaCat
    6:15 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    10) lol, and I need something to
    laugh about with this season

  14. Branjovi
    6:16 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    13. don’t compare AP to Jones just yet. TJ was way more productive player even as a freshman and we own a big part of our precious #8 to him. but for some, like you, you can only focus on the bad month he had last year. AP is not on Jones’ level yet. Jones has way better ball skills and seems to not mind getting his hands dirty. TJ got a bad wrap because he was a showboat but he is a very skilled player. Most rooks spend time in the D league, btw. He is already called back up.

  15. SeaCat
    6:19 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    MANIA at 8) lol

  16. Bradley
    6:25 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    Cut Harrow and Poythress a break. They say when women are around each a lot they get on the same cycle. I beat they didn’t start because they were dealing with menstrual cramps.

  17. Briar Gates
    6:28 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    I think JD may be on their cycle too.

  18. sunnycat
    6:30 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    If AP or AG get drafted in the first round which is where they are still projected I think it sets the example of going to college be knuckle head and you can still get drafted. Then again the NBA isnt known for sound financial decisions. At this point I have as much potential as AP or AG.

  19. The Entire State
    6:31 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    I hope this incident doesn’t hurt Poythress stock for the WNBA Draft. Upside…..The Minnesota Lynx are going to be very impressed with Harrow’s leadership skills.

  20. Jdn1016
    6:34 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    I am not trying to be hateful but Alex really isn’t a good fit for this program. Also, comparing AP to TJ is completely off base. Jones had a handful of games in 2 years where he played far below his skill level due to a lack of effort. Poythress has NEVER shown any sign of a competitive will the entire season. For his sake and Kentuckys he needs to move on after the season ends.

  21. Wrong again
    6:34 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink


    18 is old enough to die for your country, these aren’t kids they’re men and if they are old enough to go to war then they are old enough to accept some criticism

  22. Kaaaat
    6:34 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    Everyone should stop dissing AG and AP because it will hurt tem in the draft and we definitely want them to getbdrafted, best thing formthem and UK, win win situation.

  23. CliffFrankLou
    6:36 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    #11, you mean Terrence Jones, who helped us win the national championship last April? Right…yeah….Speak only for yourself, sparkplug.

  24. IUsucksBIGTIME
    6:43 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    #10, I understand not wanting to bash these “kids.” What I cannot tolerate is these “kids” being given a chance of a lifetime by a coach that has proven himself over and over at getting them to the next level and them being so disrespectful that they will not listen to him or the other coaches with what they need to do. THEY are NOT bigger than this program and if they do not want to do what is asked of them, then let them go.

  25. whodat
    6:47 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    @21 tell it like it is! I am sick of hearing people pull the “kid card”…. if you play any sport at a top D1 program you are going to be in the limelight. Just watch the body language in that video… they just quit plain and simple AND we dont do that in the UK basketball program! EVER!

  26. Jdn1016
    6:48 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    When does Poythress not look “disgusted and defeated”???

  27. reffing
    6:58 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    The technical call on Willie was horseshit.

  28. Laker Cat 18
    6:59 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    Grow a pair and play ball Poythress.

  29. blitzedanddazed
    7:07 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    I have never seen a UK team get slapped around in an SEC game like they did this past Saturday. WCS is not the answer in the middle. Harrow is done. Poythress does not have the drive to be great. Wiltjer is a role player at the best. Polson should not even play meaningful minutes. Goodwin is Goodwin.
    Shabazz might have made a more insightful decision than we give him credit for.

  30. BravoBigBlue
    7:12 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    This is for Coach Cal. The BBN does not want a repeat of this season. Ever. My advice is to alter to your recruiting strategy to include 4-year players along with the 4- and 5-stars. We would not have won #8 last season without Darius Miller. I truly believe that. And Jones and Lamb, who were both very good returning players, were vital to the team’s success. You have to have some quality experience to mesh with all the new players. No more like this year. Ever. It’s been a bust.

  31. doronslamb
    7:16 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    Come on guys, give these kids a break…we are all so spoiled with Cal’s teams the last three years, these are kids trying to develop into men and play in the pressure packed state of bbn…the season is not even over and we are writing them off…i see them winning three in a row and upsetting florida and proving all the naysayers wrong…hang in there ap and ag…real fans are still behind you

  32. confused
    7:19 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    i’m totally confident that Cal has told these players before they come here that he will push them as far as he can … and that it won’t be a cakewalk … why they don’t believe him i don’t know

  33. blitzedanddazed
    7:25 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    Poythres, Goodwin and WCS better make sure their passports are in order. They are going to need them.

  34. Bottom Line
    7:27 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    Cal is a horrible coach without ready made, NBA stars.

  35. mudcreekmark
    7:36 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    Name Minutes Points Rebounds Assists Rivals ranking
    Shabazz Muhammad 30 18 5 1 1
    Kyle Anderson 29 10 9 4 3
    Tony Parker 7 2 1 0 27
    Kaleb Tarczewski 21 6 5 0 9
    Brandon Ashley 21 8 6 1 23
    Those are some numbers of a few or the players we were going after.

  36. fatlidineastky
    7:40 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    Watching UK Hoops women….they play hard….ALL THE TIME….maybe a few of our boys should watch them

  37. Bradley
    7:43 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    30. Speak for yourself, not BBN. Elite 8, Final 4, National Title. The philosophy isn’t the problem. One down year of high schoolers is. Besides, he’s not only recruiting one and dones. Wake up. Reality is looking for you.

  38. blitzedanddazed
    7:43 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    I don’t even feel good about Poythres, Goodwin and WCS coming off the bench last year.

  39. wassup
    7:46 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    I don’t get the talk about recruiting ‘4-year players.’ If the top-10 talent is wanting to come to your school, you’ve got to take them (assuming they’re good kids, etc.). ‘4-year player’ implies a low-ranked prospect. OK, fine, but if/when Cal recruits guys like that, BBN will tear him a new one for recruiting duds. I just don’t get how you recruit 4-year players, unless you want a bunch of guys like Hood and Polson. They’re fine, but we’re not winning any titles with a team of them.

  40. Jimi
    7:51 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    Watching the Women play & they play with waaaay more heart than the Men’s team.

  41. brain
    7:52 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    So this is where the dumbass know nothings hang out.

  42. Here we go now
    7:55 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    IRONY at its finest, Many of the same fans who screamed and berated Jones and Miller the loudest when they we underclassmen, suddenly give them credit for the National Championship. You cant have it both ways. 3 and 4 yr players are that because it takes many players time for their games to develop and reach their potential. Not once did I hear AP say a word about being a one and done. The kid took a pretty good fall & bounced his face and head off the court on that play too. How did Kenny Walker look as a freshmen? The Gator MAN in the middle Patrick Young averaged 3 pts and 3 rebs as a Fr. The player credited with saving our program after Sutton, J Mashburn had almost identical stats to AP his Fr year. AP went for 20 pts and 8 rebs vs Duke, the best team we have played. FWIW, the actual not coachable statement during the game didnt happen on this play was NOT directed at AP

  43. Bob Day
    7:56 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    Can someone explain to me why someone with KSR can’t change the background color of blockquotes in the site’s stylesheet from #AAAAAA to something at least somewhat more readable like #CCCCCC, #DDDDDD or EEEEEE??

  44. BeauKnows
    8:01 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    I think everyone is reading too much into this. There was a lot of whistle blowing that didn’t seem to go in our favor. WCS was bending over to help up Poythress when Golden busted through. I’d have shoved him too. Young kids get frustrated. It may take them until next year to be able to handle a hostile environment, hostile refs (think Doug Shows) and an excitable coach. We will prevail !!
    GO CATS!!

  45. Boring
    8:25 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    It’s really simple. Cals system goes like this.
    Come play, you play well, you go pro in a year. If you don’t, yeah we have a bad year, and you’re miserable. Next year, you’ll have kids a year under you competing for your minutes and trying to work hard and go pro.
    What this means for UK is that sometimes we have down years. But we have a lot of turnover. This means that every year is to be drastically different than the previous. We’ll have up and down years just like any other team. But since our turnover is drastic, our highs and lows are on a season to season basis. Lets just hope this year is a low and the team bonds a ton over the summer and gets ready to play.
    I can understand being upset because we pour our lives and money into tickets, t-shirts, memorabilia, sports packages, and travel expenses just watch this team play. And to see them not even care or try against that puke-orange clad team made my blood boil. But next year we’ll be back and reloaded just like every other year with Cal.

  46. maddogmitchell55
    8:42 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    Tennesse players were slapping the ball out of Kentucky players’ hands, shoulder bumping, hand checking and jersey tugging allllll game long. They tried to intimidate UK’s young players and, evidently, did a good job of it. UK fans can expect more of this stuff from the other teams UK plays the rest of the year. Hopefully, UK’s players respond better.

  47. dude
    9:59 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    Go to youtube and pull up any interview from AP since he’s been at UK..dude seems depressed as hell and just not happy to be there at all.

  48. mudcreekmark
    10:36 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    What is really hurting us this year, besides having little coming back from last year, is we just don’t have enough players. Harrow, Polson, Wiltjer,Mays,Goodwin,Poythress,Noel,WCS,Mays,Hood, and Beckham? are the only scholarship players on the roster. Beckham and Polson are only on scholy because we weren’t full.I’m sure Cal didn’t fill the rest of the scholarships for a reason. 2012’s class was really weak and he knew 2013 was loaded.

  49. theSkinny81
    11:09 pm February 18, 2013 Permalink

    39 – yup. It’s probably those same fans I’ve seen who ripped Cal for “wasting” a scholarship on Derek Willis.

    Some of our “fans”…. Smh. I’m frustrated with this team, but relax people. It’s a down year. Happens all the time to teams. Coach K has had them, Roy Williams has DEFINITELY had em, Bill Self…..

    Just chill, people, and quit bashing these kids. I’m also willing to bet these guys who bash on these kids would want heads to roll if it was their own sons being bashed.

  50. Badams
    12:18 am February 19, 2013 Permalink

    There isn’t an excuse anymore and they whole they are kids excuse is bullshit. Every freshmen under cal at uk has gotten it by this time of the season. Alex doesn’t care, Archie does what he wants, and who the hell knows what happened to Ryan cuz he was playin really well in dec and jan. Bench Archie Ryan and Alex and play hood and the walk ons. At least those guys will play their hearts out and act like they give a damn. If this keeps up the rest of the season, I will look forward to the departure of those 3. And that’s sad cuz they are all very likeable. But this is Cals team, we are Kentucky, not the individuals who do what they want and dont listen to the coach. Get it together or kick rocks!

  51. Badams
    12:20 am February 19, 2013 Permalink

    49, no one is bashin them for not developing or playin up to expectations, it’s the fact they don’t listen, don’t care, dont hustle, and don’t try. As for Willis, Cal wanted him for a reason. I just hope Cal is smart enough to redshirt him next year bc it will be a wasted year for him.

  52. turkey hunter
    8:28 am February 19, 2013 Permalink

    Only good thing to come out of that play is the refs forgot to give Stokes his AND 1.

  53. Jughead
    9:04 am February 19, 2013 Permalink

    I hope this team does well on NBA draft day. That is the only way it will win games next season.

  54. Feelyourpain
    10:38 am February 19, 2013 Permalink

    As a Tennessee fan, I can tell you guys that Alex Poythress is just like Scotty Hopson from a couple of years ago. Tons of talent, but mentally needs a lot of work.

  55. Black Francis
    2:54 pm February 19, 2013 Permalink

    I just don’t see how Poythress is back at UK next year. If he doesn’t go pro, I would think he transfers. I just don’t think he wants another year of Cal on his butt.

  56. kingrex
    12:57 am February 20, 2013 Permalink

    We have no proof Poythress is really THAT talented. I was at the Duke game and that was impressive, but to be honest all of us have had that one game in our lives where we looked at felt special. Then we learned he could not dribble, did not like contact or going full speed. Basically just a normal freshman.