Seth Davis of Sports Illustrated recently chatted with Rick Pitino to discuss Louisville’s self-imposed ban and his opinion of the decision to do it.
Pitino told Davis he played no role in imposing the ban and he was left in the dark until Tom Jurich notified him of it on Thursday, the day before the press conference. He was not given any details because he hasn’t been interviewed, so he says, and he asked Jurich to take some time to think it over before going public.
Pitino also said he hasn’t read the book — yeah, okay — but, “I know that Eric Crawford found out a lot of inaccuracies.” You will never convince me Pitino didn’t read the book that cost him the NCAA tournament and will likely end his time at Louisville. He read the book.
Then, maybe the most telling part of the interview, Davis asked Pitino if he will be the coach of the Cardinals next season.
Pitino did not say he will be back:
You know, I do the same thing every year. I take some time and ask, Did you have fun? Is it something you want to continue doing? And every year for 15 years, I’ve said I want to come back. Now these circumstances are different than most, but I’m more passionate today than I’ve ever been. I think I enjoy teaching as much as I’ve ever enjoyed it. If there was a time where if I believe in my heart that Louisville is better off without me, I would leave yesterday.
Some other great Pitino quotes from the interview:
— “The mistake they made was they didn’t have (Tom Jurich) on the committee.”
— “â€‹The second thing is, this took place in a dormitory that I built in my brother-in-law’s name in honor of his legacy after 9/11. I wouldn’t let anybody break a chair in that place without coming down hard on them.”
— “She’s saying this happened maybe 20 times over four years, so that’s four or five times a year behind closed doors. How the hell are we gonna know about that?”
— “Andre McGee was one of the cheapest individuals around. If it was his turn to buy a round in a tavern, he would go to the restroom.”
— (On skipping Kentucky press conference) “It’s an environment that’s very emotional for me and I didn’t want to deal with it. Normally, I like going to press conferences. I like dealing with the media.”
— “People at Louisville know that I am telling the truth.”
Read the whole thing here.
— Drew Franklin (@DrewFranklinKSR) February 5, 2016