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Memphis President Pulls the Plug on Honoring Cal

Well, this is awkward.

Yesterday Memphis President Dr. David Rudd announced that it would honor Hallof Fame Coach John Calipari in December.  Memphis fans said mean and nasty things on social media and to the President.  Feeling the heat, the President got out of the kitchen by apologizing to his fans on the eve of Cal’s enshrinement.

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I don’t care how nice the press release seems, it takes a coward to pull the plug not 24 hours after the announcement.

Article written by Nick Roush

"Look upon the doughnut, and not upon the hole." @RoushKSR

51 Comments for Memphis President Pulls the Plug on Honoring Cal



  1. Sammydog
    7:26 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

    Wait til the haters see this.



  2. Marc Cohn
    7:28 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

    Bad idea from the get-go. If Cal left for Duke, Duke was #1, next coach had UK in the NIT, 2012 banner came down, and Blue Devil starting center www from Lex…we would hate him. To make it more legit, say Cal went to the Cavs for 3 years, and then Duke. Granted, Memphis to UK is a legit jump, but the rest is galling when you go from yearly Elite 8 to *. Though Memphis has * by decade



    • ukjaybrat
      7:39 am September 11, 2015 Permalink

      Your analogy isn’t correct though. UK to Duke is a parallel move. Memphis to UK is a HUGE promotion as far as head bb coach is concerned. How can you blame someone for taking a promotion from a CUSA school to one of if not the best basketball programs of ALL TIME? their fans are being ignorant and it’s showing. Fact is, we wouldn’t hate Pitino if he decided to take any other coaching job in the country. So the people using that analogy are being ignorant too.



  3. Mark. Question, Mark.
    7:35 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

    “level of upset?” well said, prez. well said.



  4. bbn4LIFE
    7:37 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

    Hate us cause they ain’t us. Cal flops his proverbial weiner in the mouths of any nay sayers. All that matters is that the UNIVERSITY OF KENTUCKY will honor this man as the greatest to ever do it. Cal for president 2016



  5. Sammydog
    7:41 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

    Why not honor him with a Greatest Cheater award? The NCAA already has given him that honor. Why not Memphis?



    • L1C7
      8:47 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

      Actually the ncaa has repeatedly said Cal has not done anything wrong. Butthurt much?



    • CATandMONKEY
      5:52 am September 11, 2015 Permalink

      Unparalleled ignorance on display for the entire planet. Thanks.



    • Beavis
      6:27 am September 11, 2015 Permalink

      Wrong there Sammy, the greatest cheater award goes to the football and basketball coaches at U of L. However, if you have proof that Cal is a cheater, post it here. No ? Didn’t think you had any proof. Is it warm under that rock ?



  6. Dave
    7:45 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

    I can understand why Memphis fans are mad because they are no longer relevant. But Cal has given millions to their community for very worthwhile causes. The Memphis president has chosen to take the low road… Completely classless.



  7. Kyblue34
    7:46 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

    Just when you thought Memphis couldn’t get any more pathetic…. They are the embarrassment of college athletics!



    • Memphis Whiners
      7:52 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

      Says a lot about their fan base. And it ain’t good.



    • Leuther
      11:39 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

      Says a lot about their President too. What was he thinking??



  8. GroundControlToNumber9
    7:48 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

    This isn’t about you Memphis…



    • bigcatstanding
      3:15 am September 11, 2015 Permalink

      exactly the only time it was about Memphis is when Calipari was coaching there. I mean get real no matter what sport you look at John Calipari was the best coach that entire stinking establishment has ever had.

      I mean get real a kid might have cheated While in high school / emphasis on might. That’s right to this day has yet to be proven he did cheat.
      so Memphis fans = (all “five” of you ) up yours!!



  9. Duke
    7:49 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

    Cal is a buffoon of a coach when he doesn’t have 7 or 8 pros on his team. Check out all his NITs when he was in a garbage league as proof. William Wesley saved his [email protected] and you goobers know it.



    • lonnieb
      8:15 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

      Funny from 9 all American duke talking about only winning with good players.

      He only had FIVE 5 star players EVER prior to uk and put 2 shit programs in the map.

      He is the best in the country at adapting to his current teams and making them play great unselfish ball. It’s a hell of a lot harder to take a bunch of 18 year Olds and get them to play the right way then to be good every once in a while when your Team falls together perfect like a louisvlle team



    • Duke
      9:23 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

      Very true. But K has won multiple titles with far less talent than Cal requires to win big. K won a couple of titles with players Cal would have been lucky to win 20 games with. Cal can’t win a title with just a couple of pros. I has proven in the past that he can.



    • UKfaninLou
      9:36 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

      Maybe, Duke, but you know as soon as well as we do,that your precious Coach K is now copying Coach Cal’s “one and done” ways. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery and all that. Smart guy, Coach K.



    • lonnieb
      10:02 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

      You are insane if you don’t think cal would win 5 titles if he stayed at uk 36 years.

      Cal actually did a lot more at Memphis and UMass with less overall talent than coach k ever has

      Why are you on a uk sports blog in sept….that’s the bigger question



    • bigcatstanding
      3:23 am September 11, 2015 Permalink

      Good god dude are you stoned or truly that stupid.
      I mean get real “clown” Coach K and his endless supply of all Americans aka just north of “50” that is= clown.

      Get real Coach K has never won or done anything great without a great team with veterans surrounding him. Point being 2 of his titles came by way of the exact same team, aka veteran leadership and a star-studded cast times 2 !!
      GO CAT’S



  10. Sir Brandon
    7:53 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

    “Protect the integrity” Methinks he knoweth not what the word meaneth.

    Oh and “we will not be recognizing Coach Calipari at the University of Memphis..” Funny, many recognizeth not the Memphis bball program without Cal.



    • mapcatfan
      8:50 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

      Lol, well done.



  11. tedington
    8:02 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

    Just like the rest of the basketball universe….I could not care less about what they do at Memphis State.



  12. AustraliaCatFan
    8:02 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

    Memphis has every right. If Cal left for another school and left UK in the lurch then we would not honor him. I am happy the prez is listening to fans for a change.



    • bigcatstanding
      3:53 am September 11, 2015 Permalink

      Dumb dumb de dumb. I mean get real bozo / if someone offers you twice as much money tomorrow to switch jobs= you couldn’t possibly switch fast enough. That’s right John Calipari did nothing no one else wouldn’t have.
      and the kid that might have cheated while in high school, Has still yet 2 this day be proven a cheater??
      good day Chump / happy hating



  13. Larry Magruder
    8:11 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

    Yesterday’s actions by the President rose above the level of athletics. He was gracious in acknowledging the continued accomplishments of a man who served the University of Memphis well during his time there. Today’s actions clearly show a man who turned his back on an opportunity to teach everyone what true leadership and respect for another’s accomplishments are all about.



  14. Plano Wildcat
    8:39 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

    Just wow.



  15. Plano Wildcat
    8:40 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

    Left me speechless…



  16. Hugh Paughcresy
    8:44 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

    Matt Jones is the last guy on earth who should wade into a Cal/Memphis spat



    • L1C7
      8:50 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

      Tard fans need not get into this either. #L1C7



    • ukjaybrat
      7:45 am September 11, 2015 Permalink

      Good thing this article was written by Nick Roush and not Matt Jones… moron



  17. Slimer
    8:47 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

    Maybe Rudd can get Keith Lee to speak at his Dec28th banquet. That should generate about 10 or 20 bucks for the University. Does the phrase “sore loser” come to mind when reading about this?



  18. Catlogic15
    8:47 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

    Thank you Memphis for showing us you are…..well…….Memphis.



  19. postfeeder
    9:03 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

    This would be the prefect time for Cal and Barnhart to announce that UK will be honoring Rick Pitino for his HOF induction and contribution to the university of Kentucky.



    • dubowski
      9:12 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

      I see nothing wrong with this. It was a mistake on his part. Doesnt matter if the fans are right or not. Its just not worth it for him. He probably didnt realize the backlash was going to be this bad. He’s probably still good friends with Cal. But everyone’s gotta pay the mortgage. Probably not good for a president to have the majority of the fanbase hating him.



    • dubowski
      9:13 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

      yup that wasnt supposed to be a reply to postfeeder. that looks way out of context now hah



    • ukjaybrat
      7:47 am September 11, 2015 Permalink

      coach leaving for a better job != coach leaving for a rival. UK has not officially “dissed” Pitino, but they won’t honor him either. Not unless they are honoring a team he coached. Even then, I wouldn’t be surprised if he wasn’t invited (unless he’s LONG since been retired).



  20. Sarah White
    9:14 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

    What a classless move, Mr. President. I live in Tennessee and I have many friends in Memphis – quite a few who detest Coach Cal. However, I always have two things to say to my friends. First, you are mad because he left Memphis. Because prior to Cal coaching in Memphis no one in the state of Tennessee or outside the state even knew Memphis played basketball. He almost doubled his salary when he went to UK; everyone who has ever had a good job would take almost double pay. And, secondly, Memphis has to have the dumbest attorneys in the nation, or they wanted Cal to fail. If not, and Memphis was so sure the scores at the test site for Derrick Rose were invalid because of lack of control at that site, then why didn’t they invalidate every single test score that was taken at this facility on this same day. I’m sure more than one person took the test.

    Shame on you Mr. UM President. You did something good; but, then you chickened out because of pressure. I bet half of the naysayers were not nor ever had been students at the University of Memphis. And, secondly, Memphis, I’m glad Coach Cal and his wife are still classy enough to continue to invest money in your city and your students. I know I certainly wouldn’t after being treated this way. If he didn’t know before what a good move he made when coming to Kentucky, then he certainly does now.

    Thank you, Coach Cal.



    • bigcatstanding
      3:27 am September 11, 2015 Permalink

      “Amen” don’t have nothing to add couldn’t say it better myself



  21. Jonsmack
    9:21 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

    Memphis basketball is like the Dutch navy; interesting to talk about but ultimately of no consequence. We’re going to honor the crap out of OUR hall of fame coach right here in the big blue nation.



  22. keithKatfan
    9:43 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

    I live in Memphis area and it is ridiculous the bitterness and hate toward Cal. In the news story about the intentions to honor cal the newscasters off camera were booing. memphis is no longer relevant. I guarantee 90% of the fan base has left a job for a better one. What hypocrites. They better not ever root for the titans since they left memphis(oilers) for Nashville



  23. Bluecat11
    9:57 pm September 10, 2015 Permalink

    I wish we would schedule Memphis and beat the tar out of them



  24. Indiana Integrity
    12:18 am September 11, 2015 Permalink

    At least we Hoosiers never have to worry about a slime bucket, greasy haired, Italian guido, used car salesman as our coach.



    • bigcatstanding
      3:42 am September 11, 2015 Permalink

      No Indiana fans just need to worry about landing any type aka Coach. preferably one that could cause a sports writer to say basketball and Indiana in the same breath lol.

      I mean get real what’s it been like 40 years since you guys were relevant?



  25. Tony
    12:42 am September 11, 2015 Permalink

    Why would UK fanbase care about Memphis fans hate for Cal? I haven’t read one tweet or response from Memphis to UK. You haven’t acknowledge Pitino’s HOF entry or his contributions to UK and understandably so. You all definitely wouldn’t think about it if he was currently on top of the basketball world elsewhere. It’s ok to want to defend your coach but this situation doesn’t appear to have anything to do with UK.



    • ukjaybrat
      7:54 am September 11, 2015 Permalink

      UK fans care because this story is about our coach and the ongoing irrational hate towards him that is completely undeserved. And once again, the analogy of honoring Pitino is completely irrelevant because he went to our rival. UK is not Memphis’s rival. Pitino would still be lived if he went ANYWHERE else. but please continue to ignore the facts. most of the other trolls tend to do the same.



  26. TigerFanInLex
    1:08 am September 11, 2015 Permalink

    As a Memphis Tiger fan living in Lexington (I come in peace), I felt compelled to at least try to defend our fans in some small way. Most Memphis fans do not begrudge John leaving Memphis for UK. I know I do not. Cal did a lot of good things for our program. UK is, at worst, one of the top 2 or 3 jobs in the country for college basketball, and is arguably the best job. Memphis, despite how much our fans love the program and how important the Tigers are to the city, is simply not at that level. Maybe one day we will find our Rupp and get closer to the rarified levels of success that UK and other schools of your ilk have. The issue most Memphis fans have with John leaving is the circumstances surrounding his exit. The program went from being up 9 points in a national championship game with 2 minutes left (worst sports disaster of my life) to a program that can no longer even make the NIT. To get that close to the top of the mountain, only to see it slip way and fall completely to pieces, that has been really hard for our fan base to take. On top of our descent into being irrelevant, when Cal left, our team was put on probation. I know John wasn’t sanctioned in that, and for the record, I do not think he had a hand in Derrick Rose’s ACT/SAT issues. I don’t think John is a saint, but he is no dirtier than K, or Self, or Izzo, or any other big name college basketball coach. But to watch the coach that we believed was finally going to bring us a national championship leave and build an absolute juggernaut at his next stop, has left a lot of raw feelings. If it was a completely rational world, we would have no problem honoring Cal at Memphis. However, we wouldn’t be fan(atic)s if we were rational.



    • ukjaybrat
      7:58 am September 11, 2015 Permalink

      Well put. but being mad at someone for taking a huge promotion is just silly. Western Kentucky fans have had a lot of football success in the last decade. they keep losing coach after coach to better programs. But they aren’t pissed at they’re former coaches. instead they were happy to have been there. it’s better to be a stepping stone than a gravestone. Being this irrationally angry at a coach who chose to leave is essentially saying “If you are going to come here just to leave, don’t even come” … well that’s not going to attract very many coaches who are going to bring memphis back to national relevance.
      good day



  27. TigerFanInLex
    1:12 am September 11, 2015 Permalink

    BTW – keep up the great work on the website, Matt and Company you guys do such a great job. I always find KSR well worth reading, even if I am not exactly a UK fan.



  28. BCO
    7:52 am September 11, 2015 Permalink