The 2012-13 season is mercifully over, and despite having the #1 ranked recruiting class in the country, Kentucky failed to make the NCAA Tournament, and were unceremoniously dispatched in the First Round of the NIT by Robert Morris. Hard to see things being any different in 2013-14. To stay apprised and educated, follow me on Twitter @NotJerryTipton. Here’s the weekly notebook:
*Everything Counts: The ever-objective Rick Bozich caused waves with Kentucky fans earlier this week when he says he was told that NBA scouts were “turned off” by the body language exhibited by Kentucky’s Wonder Twins, Aaron and Andrew Harrison. At first blush, this seemed like sour grapes from the long-suffering Indiana alum and Louisville apologist, yet upon further review, Bozich is totally on to something. In reviewing tapes of the various all-star games in which the Harrisons played, they can be seen talking to refs, pleading with teammates to try hard, exhibiting emotion and showing an overall desire to beat their opponents. This year’s Kentucky team had its share of issues, but it definitely wasn’t plagued with this problem. NBA scouts were right to take notice of such behavior. These were just exhibition games, and if the twins are that hell-bent on winning those, who knows what kind of stunts they’ll pull when the bright lights are shining on them next season. And not to compare the programs, but I did notice that there were no Louisville recruits who embarrassed themselves in the Nike Hoop Summit. Or the Jordan Brand Classic. Or the McDonald’s All-American game. Louisville 1st, Class 4ever.
*People Are People: One underreported story line from last weekend’s Nike Hoop Summit involved the only UK commit to have played in the game who is an underclassman: Karl Towns hates America. Though he lives and plays in New Jersey, he opted to play for the World team, which, as it turns out, was formed with one goal in mind: Beat the Americans. His lineage isn’t exactly clear, but I do know that he speaks with no trace of a foreign accent, which makes one wonder why he would choose to play against the Americans, rather than with the Americans. And this is the continuation of a disturbing trend under John Caliapri: First, Kyle Wiltjer played against America. Then, Towns played against America. And to top it all off, Kentucky is actively recruiting another non-American, Andrew Wiggins. This can hardly be seen as a surprise, however, given that John Calipari chose to coach the Dominican Republic national team, rather than the U.S. national team. Guess Coach Cal thinks these colors DO run.
*Blasphemous Rumours: On Monday, it was announced that Andrew Wiggins was canceling in-home visits with North Carolina, Kansas and Florida State. This does not bode well for Kentucky. Reading the tea leaves, it is clear that of the four schools he was considering, Wiggins has only eliminated one: The University of Kentucky. Obviously, if he were ready to eliminate the other 3 schools, he would have proceeded with the visits so that he could have told the coaches “thanks, but no thanks.” Of course, Wiggins did visit with Coach Cal a few weeks ago, when he presumably expressed that exact sentiment to Calipari. This is probably why Cal continues to recruit other players, because he knows Andrew Wiggins is taking his talents elsewhere.
* On this date: On this date in 3918, Louisville fans will still be saying “Robert Morris.”