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Calipari not allowed to discuss ejection

Screen Shot 2016-02-13 at 11.17.01 AM

After John Calipari got thrown out of Saturday’s game at South Carolina less than two and a half minutes in, everyone wanted to know why. Initially, Calipari seemed upset with Doug Sirmons for not calling a foul on Michael Carrera for dragging Jamal Murray to the ground, which earned Cal the first technical, but it was the second technical that everyone’s talking about. Calipari was furious with Sirmons and had to be restrained by his players and escorted off the court.

What in the world caused Calipari to fly off the handle like that? Cal was asked about the ejection on today’s SEC Coaches Teleconference, but said he wasn’t allowed to talk about it.

“I can’t talk about it,” Cal said, after which the moderator on the call reminded reporters that coaches can’t comment on officiating.

That’s a stupid rule. I don’t know about you guys, but I’d love to hear what Calipari has to say about this:


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.

52 Comments for Calipari not allowed to discuss ejection

  1. BigBlueSkyDog
    12:04 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    I just hope that Mitch sent a formal complaint to the SEC office and request that Sirmons no longer do UK games for the rest of the year.

    • ukjaybrat
      12:51 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      Just the year?

  2. yarg
    12:05 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    I don’t really have a problem with coaches flying off the handle like this occasionally for the most part, but I do think it’s weird that it happens. Just that you have grown men/women in their 40s, 50s, etc. absolutely losing it in front of a big crowd plus a television audience. Especially when you’ve got 18/19 year olds holding you back–I get that it’s used for motivation sometimes, but still bizarre to witness.

    • bluesyCat
      12:38 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      I agree. Throw in the fact that these 40-70 year old men are all getting paid at a minimum hundreds-of-thousands if not millions of dollars to coach these games. I think Cal was actually upset about something though because it doesn’t make a lot of sense to fly off like that for motivation only 2+ minutes into the game. Maybe he promised Ulis he would do this so Tyler could show the country that he runs the team in-game. One thing is for sure, refs are in too much control these days and without any recourse as it seems.

    • leon singleton
      12:41 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      Sirmons is who you be ashamed of.

    • Booby Petrino
      12:51 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      I think he did it on purpose bc we have a history of letting teams run over us. SC has a reputation for playing physical. I think Cal was showing his team that they needed to play with attitude or they will get ran over again. He brought the attitude and it carried over into our play. Brilliant, Coach!

  3. RealCatsFan
    12:05 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    Must be an SEC rule, because if not, it never stopped Coach Buy-A-Vowel from whining about the “amazing” ref’s.

  4. papasnapper
    12:22 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    That’s why some of them are so arrogant: No accountability. Don’t like the way the game was called, tough. Just shut up and take it because the refs are guarded from ridicule. Crap rule.

    • papasnapper
      12:26 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      Heck, I am pretty sure that Cal has plenty of discretionary money in his personal budget. I’d like to see him open up and just take the fine for commenting about the refs

  5. Megan
    12:23 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    Murray was there. He knows what was said, at least after the first technical. Is there a rule prohibiting players from commenting? And what about everyone at the scorer’s table? They heard the whole thing. Why is no one asking them?

  6. Mathlete
    12:27 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    There should be a weekly call involving the head of officiating for each P5 conference where they explain the controversial calls from the week as a Q&A with the press. That would clean up a ton of the bad calls and no calls just by holding their bosses accountable.

    If my boss were getting grilled every week for every mistake I made, I would definitely hear about it and have to fix it.

    • bluesyCat
      12:42 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      Im not sure if this exists or not but there should be a point system where you are docked for every botched call in a game, maybe by some non ref advisory board, and at the end of the season if you have so many points taken away you are ineligible to work post season tournaments and for the next season you are relegated down a league. This would make refs think a bit more before anticipating calls or using bias. Unfortunately it also might not leave enough refs to run the NCAA tourney because from what I’ve seen they are all awful!

    • Catsby80
      12:56 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      I don’t necessarily think that “controversial” calls should be explained, as these are very subjective in nature. However, I do think that all technical fouls should have to be explained to the press.

    • Kernel Sanders
      1:35 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      I know a long time college bball ref. He has officiated in all the power conferences including the SEC. He says that after games, the referees have a conference call where pretty much every call they make during the game is dissected and they have to justify their calls. He says it gets pretty intense and they are graded on their performance which affects their eligibility to referee games deep in both conference tourneys and the NCAA tourney. As far as a ref having to justify calling technicals and/or tossing coaches….not sure how that is addressed. He has some great stories of interactions with Bobby Knight (says every ref dreaded calling an IU game), Pitino, Dale Brown and others.

      Point is, they are held accountable to a large degree by having to answer to the conference’s head of officiating after every game.

  7. BTownUKFan
    12:32 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    Hopefully Cal will write another book after he retires and there will be a chapter or ten on officials. I tweeted the SEC commissioner on Saturday, SEC officiating is an embarrassment and as long as the general public sees no accountability for poor job performance no one is going to believe changes are occurring.

  8. bbn4LIFE
    12:32 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    Everything cal does is planned and coordinated. He is a master tactician. He should be commander in chief.

  9. Markus
    12:41 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    Looks to me like he was screaming, “Why did you ask? Why did you ask?” Anybody else see that?

    • Yoder
      1:36 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      I’ve gotten fairly good at reading lips over the years. To me it looked like, “Why did you do it?” or “Why DIDN’T you do it?” Watch it again; sure reads like that’s what he’s saying.

    • somerset bill
      1:57 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      i got that too, yoder, except i though it was “why did you do that?” at another point i was pretty sure it was “unbelievable”. this was all after the ejection, so i thought the ‘why did you do that’ was all about calling the second one knowing he was throwing him out of the game.

  10. 2thepoint
    12:43 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    Doug sirmons should not be a ref, period! He has an agenda every game. A comment was made Saturday how he chats with one team showing all smiles while he hammers the other team. Time after time carrera was hitting and pushing UK players after plays, charging into them. He was whistled one time for a charge and that was it. All 3 refs should be banned for allowing it to keep happening. sirmons kept making horrible calls or non-calls all game long. He just needs to go.

    Another poster mentioned Valentine. Maybe he got banned from calling UK games, because I don’t remember him calling any of our games this year.

  11. jahanc2uky
    12:45 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    Based on Murray’s reaction…. I think we can all assume what was said. Murray was like did he just say that to the ref. Haha, priceless. I think Calipari was in line. As a coach you are paid to win! If you think a couple of calls could be the difference between winning and losing, you will try anything with the refs to get those couple of calls to go your way. ANYTHING. Every great coach knows this and does this to win games.

    12:51 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    That was a very gratifying beat-down on Sat! I mean those SC players are dirty and deserved that showtime style, droppin dimes, DUNKING ON YOUR HEAD! OFF THE BACKBOARD!! style a** whoopin. I mean all they did was push! That Mexican kid with the jerry curl almost hurt Jamal Murray on that play. He was basically playing football out there, there was nothing basketball about it. Not mad at Cal one bit for getting thrown out, those refs were gonna kids hurt had he not!! Once he was gone the refs started calling it fairly. It was like they checked twitter at halftime and saw how they WERE GETTING KILLED!

    • Kernel Sanders
      1:26 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      Yes, the refs sucked. Carrera is Venezuelan, btw, but I’m sure your reply is going to be “they all look alike”.

    • Long Dong Silver
      1:59 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      Just as we all look alike. Right Katina?

  13. RealCatsFan
    1:30 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    I think Cal was simply tired of seeing his team getting jobbed by the refs while on the road. The two previous road games had multiple UK players in foul trouble or fouling out early in the game. Cal has always been very good about not complaining about the refs – he simply says that’s the way it is, and his guys have to man up and be physical. I think at this point he finally became fed up. He reached a breaking point when Carrera bowled over a couple of UK players, and wanted to prove a point that he wouldn’t stand for it any more. I think he kind of expected the first technical, but when Sirmons had the audacity to toss him with little provocation, Cal lost it.

    Anyone else notice the swing that Carrera took at Lee after the off-the-backboard assist and dunk? That should have been a flagrant foul at the very least.

    • Booby Petrino
      1:53 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      I saw a push but no swing. Marcus clapped after it happened and then the refs took some time before the game started back up, so I assumed they looked at it and didn’t deem it worthy of a technical. Just my thoughts, I could be wrong.

    • CATandMONKEY
      1:55 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      Yes. When TV replayed it multiple times. Cannot believe that the announcers missed it. I replayed it several times on DVR. It was flagrant. Push and an elbow towards the head. Classy.

    • CATandMONKEY
      2:05 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      Definite elbow…did not connect. On the broadcast replay. Flagrant.

    • Long Dong Silver
      2:10 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      He should have been tossed. Clearly a swing.

  14. GroundControlToNumber9
    1:31 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    Ha! “Can’t talk about it.”

    You also can’t step outside of the coaching box, get technical fouls. You also can’t get tossed out of games.

    Calipari is hiding behind an imaginary wall here (you know… the one he usually doesn’t see but for some reason this time he’s pointing it out to us… even though we see through it).

    It’s certainly within the realm of generally acceptable civil disobedience that Cal can talk about an official making a critical ejection in the opening minutes of an important road game. Cal can also afford to talk about it.

    What are they going to do…
    1. Make Cal miss another game? Oh no… maybe Skal will get to play through a mistake for once. That would be devastating for us to win another road game by 30.
    2. Make Cal pay a fine? Double oh no… it would be ashamed for Cal to talk about WHAT THE FANS PAY HIS SALARY TO TALK ABOUT.

    John Calipari can talk about it. And the moderator of the call can take his, “yea, what he said” and take a back seat because we all know better.

    • RealCatsFan
      1:37 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      Hmmm, someone miss Tubby? Or maybe BCG? 🙂

      I don’t agree with everything that Cal does. I don’t like his stubborn general refusal to play a zone. I didn’t like the way he never seemed willing to give Willis his due and let him play more. I still get aggravated that he doesn’t get the scrubs in there by the 4 minute mark at least when we are up by 25+, ESPECIALLY AT HOME. Some of the things he says publicly makes you think that he is full of BS. But at the end of it all, there is absolutely NO ONE coaching college BB today who is more perfectly suited to the challenge of coaching UK Basketball – NO ONE. When he does leave or retire, those are going to be some gigantic shoes to fill. I feel sorry for the next coach, because he will be facing some unreal expectations.

    • GroundControlToNumber9
      1:52 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      1. Tubby and BCG were Georgia level Division 1 coaches.
      2. Willis ‘never’ deserved any time before he finally got it. The kid finally learned to play D and rebound to stay on the court. Due to our ‘clubhouse’ of talent we could afford to leave a kid who isn’t there on the bench. What I’m saying… It never cost us any loses.
      3. A zone or even Bill Self’s ESPN labeled ‘gimmicky’ triangle and 2 (used by Rick Majerus long before Self) used to beat us at Kansas this season is not a bad idea… and I think it has cost us some loses. But it’s not a deal breaker. 17-22 year old Division 1 players have trouble with multiple sets. Teams that are successful deploying them have more upperclassmen that we do. So I give Cal a pass on this one since he’s using the most effective strategy with the youngest roster in Dvision1 each year (KISS method).
      4. No one coaching today could fill his shoes at UK. Even Coach K, Bill Self, or Tom Izzo. None of them do all that Cal does… 1. Recruiting + 2. Personality + 3. A List Relationships.
      5. Love Cal… doesn’t mean he doesn’t deserve to be called out for some things.
      A. Leave Skal in the game past 1 or 2 mistakes. Let him get a rhythm to carry over from game to game. This won’t cost us a game (unless the timing is bad) and could cost us a game in March if Skal isn’t ready then. It’s not up to Skal to be ready by March… it’s up to Cal to have him there by then.

    • CATandMONKEY
      2:00 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      Ground, I was ready to criticize your first comment then read it in context of your second. I mostly now agree. My only other thought regarding Cal not talking about it is that Cal may have been told by Mitch to not talk about it…don’t bring any more possible negative attention to UK. Maybe? I don’t know.

    • GroundControlToNumber9
      2:08 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      CATandMONKEY – Mitch might have asked Cal not to talk about it.

      Doubt that would keep Cal from talking about it “if he wanted to talk about it.”

      Cal runs the BBall program (as he should). Mitch knows it and knows to defer… or else Mitch will get kicked back south across the state line to Tennessee.

      Cal has never done or shown any action or behavior that would warrant ANY recommendation or action from Mitch. Cal needs no supervision. He knows the boundaries and how to float them.

  15. Al B. Frank
    1:34 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    I, like many other posters here, just keep wondering when will the NCAA decide to hold these arrogant referees accountable? In my opinion, as officials their priority should be to defuse situations, not escalate them. More and more, the officials in recent years are playing to the home crowd, becoming increasingly more animated when making calls that favor the home team, and basically daring certain players to respond and/or react. The bottom line is that they know that players and coaches are forbidden to complain about their antics so they are basically untouchable, and it is getting completely out of hand.

  16. GroundControlToNumber9
    1:34 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    Tell the truth Cal and quit hiding behind a rule that doesn’t have any affect on your decision.

    You don’t want to talk about it. That’s why you aren’t talking about it.

    Want to know why he doesn’t want to talk about it? Because it was staged. Light the fire on a team that can’t win road games. A yearly prep tool for March Madness.

    The master at work.

    • Booby Petrino
      2:04 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      so he doesn’t want to talk about it. Move on. It’s actually really not our business. We don’t pay his salary, the school does.

    • GroundControlToNumber9
      2:10 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      Hey Booby Petrino – you could have not typed and no one would have noticed (seriously… you added zero and actually included false information).

    • Booby Petrino
      3:18 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      Hey Ground. I’m free to type whatever I want, just as you are free to keep crying even though you should move on. You basically typed the same crap you were spewing above over again. I would like to know what false information I provided here. Do you really think you pay his salary?

    • GroundControlToNumber9
      3:39 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      Booby Petrino – So now you defend your turd? Like a lost dog.

      Your free to defend the hole in your head. But if you act like a traffic cop (and aren’t one) then be prepared to get called out.

    • Dusten
      5:01 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      Dude (Ground), shut up… Somebody disagreed with your rambling, wahhhhh…

  17. RexRox
    1:51 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    Absolutely amazing that Carrera plays 29 minutes and only has 2 PF’s called on him. I actually like him as a passionate player but only two PF’s in this game? Ridiculous.

    The SEC has the highest home court winning percentage out of the top eight conferences. 72.6%. I think this is a direct reflection of the officiating in the league. Everyone should read the chapter on home court advantage in the book, “Scorecasting”. Their findings were a real eye-opener for me.

  18. CATandMONKEY
    2:02 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    Carrera should have fouled out by halftime.

    • ClutchCargo
      2:32 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      He could just have easily been ejected for multiple flagrant fouls that were never called. He was shoving or taking a swing at someone nearly every time down the court, it seemed.

  19. somerset bill
    2:31 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    we won this one so hopefully it can’t be called sour grapes to say that this was a terribly called game. possibly the worst i have seen this year. there was one instance where, essentially, the exact same play (grabbing the ball that was in the other guy’s hands, and pulling it away from them over their head), first by us and then by them resulted in a foul on us.

    i bet the penalty for cal discussing the ejection is just a fine. i would think it would be relatively inconsequential to him, given his salary. but then again cal was supposedly using 12-letter words, and i might not want to discuss it either if it cost me $10K and i was using 12-letter words.

    • GroundControlToNumber9
      3:43 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      Somerset Bill – Finally a guy with some reason. You’re on it.

      Yet I’d still like to see Jerry Tipton press Cal to talk about it for a couple more days (and then watch Cal take Jerry on a long walk down a short pier).

      Cal can handle his own. So much so it’s fun to watch.

  20. ceeph
    3:21 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    You ever wonder if Cal doesn’t contribute to the amount of fouls that gets called on UK? Does it help or hurt when he is over on the sideline screaming at our guys on defense things like “don’t foul, Watch your hands, etc…” Which I have heard him do using players names while they are trying to guard someone. Does this make the ref look closer? Well if the coach thinks he is fouling then maybe I should call something here? I don’t think it helps us out with officiating when he does that. Just my opinion.

  21. kybigblue
    3:30 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    I don’t think the ejection was planned. UK was in the lead and the game had just started when Cal was ejected. If I remember correctly the referee closest to Cal when this started was Tony Greene but it was Simmons that sprinted across the floor to call the technical and then the one that resulted in the ejection.

    Too often, especially with a large crowd, the home team gets calls or non-calls at home which they wouldn’t even get on a neutral court. It appeared that Cal didn’t like the way the officiating was going and after the first technical foul he just lost it. Did he deserve the first technical, obviously he didn’t think so.

  22. Wildcat Sheli
    3:59 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    If I was the coach of a team who got horrible calls that prevented the perfect season and then lost a very close game that shouldn’t have gone to OT at Allen Fieldhouse, and a certain ref of ill repute worked both games, it would aggravate me to no end. I can only imagine what the whole story is….Here’s hoping Sirmons won’t be seeing us again anytime soon, especially in March!

  23. snl1960
    4:05 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    I VOTE PLANNED.think about it , cal previously said he wasn’t going to get bullied at South Carolina . Gets a game plan together, works it in with Simmons ego and gets ejected. Only 2 times he’s been ejected was at s Carolina . Taking the crowd out of the game because now ,no way the cats win. When the deer in headlights feeling goes away they are down by 30. Cal leaves the floor only to see the best point guard dissect the gamecocks. Now headlines say he can’t talk about it because of reprocussion from sec. That way he doesn’t have to lie to the media about it. ALLS GREAT IN LEXINGTON……

  24. snl1960
    4:21 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    Sorry I guess I’m a conspiracy theorists.

  25. Kat in GA
    6:25 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    Sirmons did the Kansas game earlier this year…….wonder if Cal’s actions and Sirmons’ quick trigger weren’t a lingering thing from that game where every touch (on UK anyway) was called, and Murray gets his clock cleaned and no call was made. Sirmons had to have said something to Cal to make him explode……….or Cal and UK graded him very poorly from the Kansas game. I would be surprised if he did another UK game in a while. The guy has final fours in his resume, so this belongs in the Doug Shows category………