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Coach Cal’s Mailbag: “Buying in”

John Calipari and his mail bag made a return this week. Calipari took a moment to share his thoughts on a variety of topics ranging from not allowing Archie Goodwin to shoot lay-ups in practice, to his team “buying in” to each other rather than any particular “system.”

We learned a little over a week ago that Calipari and his staff are no longer allowing Goodwin to shoot lay-ups in practice. The goal has been to force Goodwin to develop a jumper/floater in the lane, instead of always driving for lay-ups when teams collapse.

“Archie…his mind set, when things get hairy–is to put his head down and try to shoot a lay-up. The problem is, everyone is playing him to shoot lay-ups. So when his head goes down, their whole team, including 2 officials, get beneath the basket…So he ends up turning it over.”

Calipari and his staff have been encouraging Goodwin to rely more upon jump shots instead. As Calipari put it, a missed jumper is an opportunity for a teammate to get an offensive rebound to keep the possession alive. In his words, “misses become passes. Just get it off the backboard.” The alternative is Archie driving into 5 players and, “maybe you throw in 1 of 7.”

Calipari then briefly addressed a question regarding the health of Twany Beckham. According to Calipari, Beckham has been back in the gym and says he is fine, but still appears to look a little tender. “His plan is, by the time we get into the NCAA tournament, he’ll be back with this team.” Calipari then referred to Beckham as his good luck charm, seeing as the team won the national championship with him on it last year.

And last but not least, as always– Calipari got a little philosophical on us. Calipari talked in some detail about his team needing to “buy in.”

“It’s not buying into my system, it’s buying into each other. You have to surrender to each other. First try to establish yourself. It’s hard to do that (buy into each other) when you haven’t established yourself.”

Calipari even drew a comparison to Michael Jordan. He discussed how it took Jordan at least 3 years to establish himself before he could shift his mindset to winning championships. Calipari said that unlike some of his previous teams at Kentucky, this team is having trouble and has fallen behind when it comes to surrendering to one another. Although it’s frustrating Cal and at times “driving him crazy,” he knows that this team has a slightly different make up. “We are used to having veterans and young players who are a little more established as players.”

Even with the frustration and growing pains this team has caused Cal at times, he went back to his favorite line: “I still like my team.” And in perhaps the most positive comment in the entire mail bag, Calipari said that he still has a vision that this team will have unbelievable joy when they figure out that they must surrender to their team.

Article written by Ally Tucker

I once successfully requested "The Wobble" to be played 6 times at one wedding.

16 Comments for Coach Cal’s Mailbag: “Buying in”



  1. Church Hmynal
    6:18 pm February 8, 2013 Permalink

    Have the team listen to I Surrender All.



  2. tdogg40330
    6:18 pm February 8, 2013 Permalink

    Cal said earlier in the year “there aint a team out there that scares me”. He knows
    this team is talented enough to make a run in March …. lets see how it unfolds.
    I think they gonna surprise people.



  3. Ridge Runner
    6:23 pm February 8, 2013 Permalink

    tdogg, we seemed to have missed each other in regards to posts recently. Hope you and your family are doing well, bud.

    The one thing that has surprised me (some) is that we are this far into the season and Cal still working his hind-end off with the buy in phase. But yes, this team has that ability to blast off at any time and I thank Cal and the staff for the time they have given.

    Go Blue!



  4. Sean Woods
    6:24 pm February 8, 2013 Permalink

    I was right.



  5. Money Bags
    6:26 pm February 8, 2013 Permalink

    #3: For $5.2 million, I could give some time too. (That doesn’t include the staff salary).



  6. tdogg40330
    6:29 pm February 8, 2013 Permalink

    3) doin good man, thanks …. how bout your way??

    I’ve had someone stealing my user name lately, if you see a negative
    post from this name …. it aint me …lol



  7. Ridge Runner
    6:31 pm February 8, 2013 Permalink

    5, I hear what you are saying. Gotcha bud.

    But in a day and time where it seems not to actually “see” coaches doing much or as much, this year for sure I think we can agree…Cal has worked hard. granted you never know what another person gos through unless you are in the shoes they wear but still…many coaches in all sports make some big bucks and as a fan, you wonder where they earning it at? Just a thought.



  8. Drone Wars
    6:36 pm February 8, 2013 Permalink

    I hope we can make Coach Cal the A.D. or something like that when he doesn’t want to coach anymore. He a good coach and a good person. He deserves every dime he makes.



  9. Ridge Runner
    6:36 pm February 8, 2013 Permalink

    6- same with me and I think all of us who post on a regular basis get the identity theft thing. That is aggravating I hear ya.

    Down here in Georgia, we usually have a mild winter as opposed to Ky and it’s running the norm. My son (age 15) scored 16pts in a rec league game the other night and it was his highest ever. So naturally we all were excited about that. especially since he just took 10 shots and made 7 of them and 2 from the line. Sorry, but I’m father-crowing…ha!



  10. Breaking News from Rivals
    6:57 pm February 8, 2013 Permalink

    Tevin Lawson has changed his mind and his flight is about to land in Lexington. #STOOPS



  11. LOLWUT?
    7:01 pm February 8, 2013 Permalink

    Do we pay Cal to teach this kids about life?!?!?!?! Hahaha always a good sign when it’s almost March and the coach isn’t even coaching the team.



  12. Dano
    7:51 pm February 8, 2013 Permalink

    Check out the Public Library CCTV feed. Seems like every time there are trolls on here, the parking lot has shopping carts parked outside. Most of them have a ripped Crown Royal bag hanging from the front and a set of Papa Johns hub caps.



  13. WkyBlue
    2:17 am February 9, 2013 Permalink

    Buying In. I hear and read comments about all of us wanting Wiggins,Randle and Gordon. The Harrison twins and James Young said from day 1 they wanted to play at UK. Derrick Willis commited long before them. Marcus Lee jumped on board after Willis,Harrison’s n Lee. Then Dakari Johnson commits. We even get Karl Towns to commit for 2014. These kids knew where they wanted to play. I would like to have Wiggins or Randle n don’t know much about Gordon but if they wanna play the Shabazz game I don’t wont em. If they are what they say why wait to see who leaves or stays. Sounds like an attention problem to me. Wanna bunch of it.



  14. WkyBlue
    2:26 am February 9, 2013 Permalink

    That may be why we’re hearing about the 3 star MiKyle McIntosh. If he wants to come aboard bring him on and don’t kiss anymore 5 star ass. Commit or play your 1 year with a loser.



  15. Rixter
    7:49 am February 9, 2013 Permalink

    OK, so defenses are looking for Archie to drive the basket and pack it in accordingly….. how about Archie puts his head down, drives the basket….. and PASSES to 1 of 4 open teammates?



  16. Rixter
    7:50 am February 9, 2013 Permalink

    BTW, Lunardi has the Cats as a 9 seed, with IU awaiting in the second round. I’d LOVE that