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WATCH: Adolph Rupp Reveals the Secret to his Success

University Press of Kentucky

University Press of Kentucky

Have you ever wanted to know how Adolph Rupp became a legendary basketball coach? You can hear the secret to his success from the Baron of the Bluegrass himself.

“We have no magic formula, but we do have some sound fundamental drills and some very excellent plays.”

Those words come from an instructional video Rupp created around 1952. The old footage was recently uncovered by the producer of Oscar Combs’ podcast, Beau Robinson. The two-minute excerpt reveals some of Rupp’s most basic teachings at the University of Kentucky. A couple of players go through a passing drill before “Play No. 6A” — a simple three-man weave — is detailed.

The instructional video is absolutely incredible on multiple levels.

Obviously, Rupp brought a little more depth to the game than what is shown, however, it’s hilarious to hear him try to convince the audience, “We believe in this brief showing of basketball situations that it will enable to you solve almost all problems that you will face during your season of play.” On a much simpler level, it’s odd to see and hear Rupp speak, especially at such a young age. He also never struck me as the smiling type, which made his grin at the end of each shot amusing.

Joe B. Hall has tried to convince John Calipari to run the 1-3-1 zone for years. The least Calipari can do is install Rupp’s Play No. 6A into the offense this fall.

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Article written by Nick Roush

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

18 Comments for WATCH: Adolph Rupp Reveals the Secret to his Success



  1. Skooms
    6:34 pm July 27, 2019 Permalink

    Somewhere in this great state, Mashburnfan just creamed himself!



  2. Ridge Runner
    6:44 pm July 27, 2019 Permalink

    Big Dan looks like he just did something mischievous.

    Yeah, nice clip. I would like to hear Coach instruct on the fast break as he really was groundbreaking there.



  3. Duuuuuude
    7:04 pm July 27, 2019 Permalink

    I like the cat logo at the end.



    • Ridge Runner
      7:50 pm July 27, 2019 Permalink

      lol.. yeah, I smiled at that when it came up. Cool.



  4. The Big Lebowski
    7:06 pm July 27, 2019 Permalink

    HAHAHA

    That’s my video. I put it up on my blog years ago.

    I got the original reel to reel tape off of ebay years ago and converted it to video.

    Happy to see it still making the rounds after a decade.



  5. The Big Lebowski
    7:08 pm July 27, 2019 Permalink

    Oh…the funniest thing about the video is that it’s sponsored by Coca Cola. Midway through the video, they do a little Coke commercial and pimp out Coke. I cut that out of the vids that I put on my blog and placed it in a separate video.



  6. Tom Bombadil
    9:16 pm July 27, 2019 Permalink

    That was cool! #BBN GO CATS!



  7. Wildcat homer
    9:18 pm July 27, 2019 Permalink

    Very cool!



  8. CrystalBall
    10:51 pm July 27, 2019 Permalink

    6A was a pregame warm up drill. Nothing you could use in a game against competition.



    • rockatao
      8:08 am July 28, 2019 Permalink

      Sorry, Crystal. I agree it wouldn’t work well these days. but in the days of Rupp’s Runts, that was the basic play. Against man-to-man defense, they ran it nearly every time down the court. The big difference back then was that there was little switching or hedging by the defense. Unfortunately, Texas Western hedged hard against that play and took UK totally out of its offense.



    • Ridge Runner
      11:33 am July 28, 2019 Permalink

      Yes rockatao, perfect explanation!



  9. UKFanSC
    10:20 am July 28, 2019 Permalink

    Most of our younger fans don’t realize how good Mike Pratt was back in the day. He was Robin to Issel’s Batman.



  10. CatBlue in LR
    2:43 pm July 28, 2019 Permalink

    The old Guard-Around. It made this program what it is. All the way through the Joe B. days (through ’85) you knew you were watching Kentucky when you saw that offense. I kinda miss it.



  11. KYCat4EVER
    8:49 pm July 28, 2019 Permalink

    Adolph Rupp: the coach who built Kentucky Basketball…

    Eddie Sutton: the coach that nearly killed Kentucky Basketball…

    Rick Pitino: the coach who saved Kentucky Basketball…

    And Coach Process; the coach who prostitutes Kentucky Basketball to the NBA…

    GO BIG BLUE!



  12. KYCat4EVER
    8:55 pm July 28, 2019 Permalink

    fans have no clue about the history of the program they claim they know, criticize the opinions of ex-players of the program when they don’t align with their own misgivings, and are easily led over the Calipari Cliff like lemmings…. God Bless all of them!

    GO BIG BLUE