Last night John Calipari tweeted out this picture of him and Mark Stoops hanging out on a Saturday night at their friends’ Joey and Jennifer Palumbo’s house. As you can see, both men are just hanging as good friend would do, wearing denim and enjoying a Saturday night BBQ. But the picture is also representative of the two men’s growing relationship with each other as both have become close in the last few months. Mark Stoops has utilized John Calipari as a recruiting weapon, taking most of his top recruits to meet the coach when they are in town for visits and Calipari has been very generous with his time on those recruiting trips. But the two men have also become friends, socializing together and working on projects to help the overall UK Athletics community. As Mark Stoops recently said to me on radio, “we have one of the best to coach any sport on our campus. I would be silly not to try and work as closely as possible with him.”
In five years, if Mark Stoops does what we want him to do here and John Calipari has added a couple more banners to the walls, this picture will be one to remember.