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John Calipari gets defensive about the platoon system on The Dan Patrick Show

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John Calipari must be bored because he decided to go on a little media tour today. Cal will speak to the local media at 11 a.m., but first, he hopped on “The Dan Patrick Show” to shoot the breeze. Well, he and DP shot the breeze for a bit, then things got awkward fast.

Calipari brought up the platoon system about halfway through the interview, and said that although it worked for the players in that seven of them will go pro this summer, it hurt the team.

“I’ll tell you what they killed us with this year: platooning,” Calipari said, presumably of other schools negative recruiting against Kentucky. “It didn’t hurt a player. Obviously it hurt us, we did not win the national title. But it didn’t hurt anything doing it. I’m never going to do that again. When am I going to have ten guys of that level?”

Patrick asked Calipari if he thought Kentucky would have won the title had they used a 7-man rotation instead of platooning, which launched Calipari into a lengthy defense of the platoon system. Oh boy.

“I don’t know. We didn’t go seven deep. We went ten deep and then we went nine deep,” Cal said. “We almost won 40 games. And we were given a tough path in the NCAAs. Playing Notre Dame and Wisconsin, come on. Think about our path there.”

From there, Calipari went on the defensive, telling Patrick that if you’re worried about results, look at his players who are in the pros right now. As for his results at Kentucky…

“If anybody wants to question me, like results, like ‘I don’t care about results’? The last six years have been a pretty good run. Now, maybe you think I should have won five national titles and been the next John Wooden. I don’t know. But I do know we were right there trying to win them every year. Didn’t do it. It’s hard to do.”

Patrick asked again about the platoon system, which led to another round of reasoning from Cal.

“All ten of them will eventually be in the NBA. Why would I be the one choosing who not to play? Why don’t I give them all a chance to play? We won 38 straight games, how much did it hurt our team? No one’s ever done what we did.”

Patrick tried to wrap things up, but Calipari wouldn’t let him off the hook. “I’ve got other legends, I’ve got guys who won national championships,” Patrick said.

“I don’t know very many people who could stand you, that if you called, they’d come on,” Cal quipped.

Check out the clip below for the ensuing awkwardness. I almost crawled under the table like Ryan Lemond:

We’ll have the full interview up as soon as it’s available.

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.

17 Comments for John Calipari gets defensive about the platoon system on The Dan Patrick Show



  1. crazies
    10:47 am June 4, 2015 Permalink

    Duke had the actual #1 overall seed bracket. We had it only in name.



  2. I'm Just Sayin
    10:57 am June 4, 2015 Permalink

    Cal is defensive on this because while it was good for the kids the platoon system was a mistake for the program. Recruiting is showing that. And while the Harrison’s have taken heat for those last five minutes against Wisconsin in reality Cal should have been calling timeouts and setting up plays to get it to Towns and we win the game. I am sure he has spent a lot of metal time kicking himself about the end of last season and the defensiveness is a symptom of that.



    • I'm a Dumb Retard, Too
      11:42 am June 4, 2015 Permalink

      I agree with wut ya’ll just said too. Far Cal! Just sayin…. duuurp.



    • Andrew
      4:21 pm June 4, 2015 Permalink

      I guess getting to the final four and having a top 3 recruiting class was a big mistake for the program… You can’t win the championship every year… We may have gotten that far without platooning, but we wouldn’t have been as good of a team. This class in recruiting is weird, we’ve all learned that by now. While platooning may not have helped in recruiting, I don’t think it hurt recruiting as much as a lot of people do…



  3. it wasn't the platoon
    11:06 am June 4, 2015 Permalink

    If anyone recalls, Cal left the starters in the last 10 mins of the game. His not platooning killed them, imo, cause those guys weren’t used to playing 10 mins straight vs a team like Wisconsin.
    Not to mention, the officiating sucked & Cal got outcoached in that last 10 mins!!



  4. MARGARET FENWICK
    11:22 am June 4, 2015 Permalink

    he has one a national championship jerk!!!



    • David Elliott
      11:25 am June 4, 2015 Permalink

      lolz @ ur grammar



  5. Terrell
    11:26 am June 4, 2015 Permalink

    I don’t agree that the platoon killed this years recruiting.

    1. If the kids were all choosing between UK and Duke or Kansas or similar, then maybe it had something to do with it. But that isn’t what happened. Malik went to the school his dad went to, a couple of them go to LSU, to Cal, to UNLV, etc. So while the platoon may have given other coaches something to talk about against UK, these kids have to be mature enough to look at the results for the player and the team. And sorry, but none of those teams are going to challenge for the NCAA next year and they will not be packaged to NBA teams like they would be at UK.

    2. You simply aren’t going to get every top player every year. This year we have two of the top 10-12 and another couple of very good players. Most years in our history, this would be considered a fantastic class, but because of the incredible level of recruiting that Cal has done in his tenure, it is seen as below par.

    3. The truth of the matter is that Cal substituted much more in the traditional sense in the last part of the season, and the platoon was obviously the right thing to do most of the season for the kids. The draft will be further evidence of that.



  6. Voice of reason
    12:48 pm June 4, 2015 Permalink

    Cal made a fool of himself, take your blue shades off and look at this objectively.



    • Voice of reason
      1:07 pm June 4, 2015 Permalink

      That being said, I’d trade our coach Pitino for him any day. That’s why I’m here.



    • UKfaninLou
      2:22 pm June 4, 2015 Permalink

      Made a fool of himself going to the Final Four 4 years in the last 5?!? Alrighty then. The past season was a blast! The NCAA Tourney is so random the best team rarely wins. I have no doubt there would have been a different result with a best of 7 or even best of three. Can’t help wondering what color shades YOU might be wearing…



  7. Badger
    2:09 pm June 4, 2015 Permalink

    As a long time Wisconsin resident, I have to say that Coach Cal is a phenomenal coach and has brought new excitement to the game of college basketball. Can we just leave him alone and let him do what he does best, that being recruiting and coaching. The jealous tactics of those attacking him are so transparent. Any coach that would put winning above the interest of his or her players is not suited for the game. No program can succeed in the long run without putting your players first, as Cal does. The most successful teams, including Duke, North Carolina, Louisville, and Kansas, all put their players first.



  8. Tin Foil Hat
    3:04 pm June 4, 2015 Permalink

    What an idiot. This is the same guy who thought the Nets were bugging his phone.



    • Tin Foil Hat
      3:41 pm June 4, 2015 Permalink

      I’ve been coming here for years, checking every day in the comments section, hoping to drop this nugget on here. I have no life. #L1C4fuksSakeIwishWeCouldBeatYou



  9. catdaddyd
    5:54 pm June 4, 2015 Permalink

    I don’t think Cal came across very well in this interview at all. Dan was asking some basic questions, and Cal gave long winded answers and kinda bullied Dan.



  10. Badger
    6:14 pm June 4, 2015 Permalink

    Dan is an excellent journalist and showman. It appeared to me that he simply baited Cal, who is not a journalist, thank goodness. Dan’s interests seems not those of the players, but of his ratings, which is likely why he is still on the air. Has Dan ever coached anybody? If I were a player, I don’t think I would listen too closely.



  11. Wildcat Sheli
    7:34 pm June 4, 2015 Permalink

    Obviously Dan Patrick did not watch most of our games! Had he, he would have realized that WHEN we (truly) platooned, we were packing teams away at historical proportions! Platooning gave us the greatest season imaginable. Obviously, Cal had an idea of who would be going pro and it was those players plus Tyler who got the most playing time at the end in the tournament. If DP would look at the stats, he would see that although 9 played in the final game, Dakari only played 8 minutes and Marcus 5. I know I’m in the minority, but I feel had we kept (truly) platooning, we would have won against Wisconsin (Dominique & Marcus were valuable defensive players in the 2014 match up). But that was Cal’s call. His philosophy had carried him that far. Do people forget we were only down 2 with 12.2 seconds left? (Ahem, what would the score have been without points off the shot clock violation? Tied! With 12.2 seconds left. Not to mention the other terrible calls…don’t get me started on the officiating in the tournament…So many ‘whys’…. and no answers). Not. Over. It. I support Coach Cal!