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John Calipari shoulders blame for Kentucky’s woes thus far

This Kentucky team clearly doesn’t have an identity yet. After a few days of reflection following back-to-back losses in Las Vegas, John Calipari shouldered some of the blame this afternoon.

As I look on where we are, not real happy with me,” Cal said in his remarks before tomorrow’s game vs. Louisville. “Like, I haven’t figured this out. So if I’m a little bit still, like, ‘Okay, which way is this?’ they’re going to be that way too. But the thing I’ve said from day one, if we don’t fight, if we don’t compete, if we don’t battle, hard to win.”

Cal said he was pleased with his team’s play vs. Ohio State until they stopped passing and started playing hero ball with about five minutes left. That cannot happen vs. Louisville tomorrow.

“I liked that we played for probably 30, 35 minutes, 32 minutes against Ohio State. That ain’t gonna be enough in this game. [Louisville] is a veteran team and they play.”

Calipari said he’s still a firm believer in this team’s potential, especially because only one player believes they’re playing well right now. (He didn’t specify who, but I’d guess Ashton Hagans.)

“I had them raise their hand. I said, ‘How many of you think you’re playing good?’ I didn’t say great, just good. One guy raised his hand. I said, ‘How many of you are playing bad?’ So I said, ‘Think about it. If we can get guys to start playing better, what we’ll be.’ That’s what I keep saying, the upside of this team is tremendous but they’re not there which means I must be doing a crap job not getting them to play better. We’re trying to work some of it through practice, but I’ll be honest, demonstrated performance is the only way to do that. It’s the only way. They’ve got to get on the court and do it.”

If anything, this team’s struggles have made Calipari even more determined to help them succeed.

“I walked out and stopped practice and — why do I love this so much? Because people start doubting your team and doubting individual players and my job is to build them up and get them going and put them in spots where they can have success. Haven’t done that yet. That’s on me. But I cannot battle for them. I can try but if I get too far out on the court, they’ll call a technical on me.”

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.

8 Comments for John Calipari shoulders blame for Kentucky’s woes thus far



  1. Bud
    2:53 pm December 27, 2019 Permalink

    This team just needs what every Cal-coached team needs: an Anthony Davis, Derrick Rose, or Marcus Camby.



  2. DirtyDave
    2:55 pm December 27, 2019 Permalink

    Shooting mechanics!!!! Don’t like the one foot being so far forward in both Tyrese and Emanuels shot! The best shooters are almost always squared up feet and shoulders. For Johnny… the lights just too bright so far, and hasn’t developed a rhythm



    • chris gettelfinger is not walking through that door
      4:23 pm December 27, 2019 Permalink

      You know, I’ve noticed that about Maxey too! I haven’t noticed it with IQ though. The funny thing is that after the Mich. St. game I posted (on the Show Thread) that “Boy, Maxey’s shot doesn’t look smooth but it goes in!” It looks like my initial instincts were correct, but hopefully Cal gets this ship on course.



    • CrystalBall
      4:52 pm December 27, 2019 Permalink

      JJ Reddick had a similar shooting motion. Left foot was in front of right. Not always, but most of the time.



  3. Righteous1
    3:09 pm December 27, 2019 Permalink

    So the Sporting News Coach of the Decade that is being paid 10 million plus incentives per year is having a problem with: coaching? I would have never thought that this was possible!



  4. zoupman
    3:23 pm December 27, 2019 Permalink

    Coach Cal is an incredible coach. He will get them going.



  5. kbo24
    7:39 pm December 27, 2019 Permalink

    He should be shouldering the blame, but this response isn’t much better than the ‘I don’t have the answers’, response he gave a couple weeks ago.

    C’mon man…you’re better than this. Maybe someone should remind you of that…



  6. kjd
    7:42 am December 28, 2019 Permalink

    Fans are growing weary of blah, blah blah.