Last weeks rumor of a potential package deal of John Calipari and LeBron James would make sense on the surface, as their go between is World Wide Wes, who now is becoming an agent for NBA coaches and has led to a friendship between LeBron and Coach Cal. With openings in Chicago and New Jersey it seems like a potential chance Cal bolts back to the NBA after one season, but I’m not buying it..
– I actually believe this is Cal’s last stop. Kentucky he has said over and over again is it for him, and why shouldn’t it be? He failed in the NBA and Kentucky can be argued as the premier job in college basketball.
– Talent at Kentucky. He has the best or at worst, second best class in the country on board this season and already the top two players in the 2011 class on board. Why leave that behind?
– It can’t be money, he’ll always be paid well and given job security at Kentucky as long as he wins.
– Does LeBron actually want John Calipari as his coach? I’m doubtful of this. He at this stage of his career wants to win and can’t afford to have a friend coaching him, he needs someone to push him.
So why the rumors? Why not?
It’s a subject nobody wants to speak on, mostly because nobody knows exactly what World Wide Wes does or how Cal gets his players. Do I think Cal has played dirty before? Yeah and there is enough supporting evidence out there to show it, even if he hasn’t taken the fall.
But now? No, I don’t buy it and fans of other programs just like to throw it out there that he’s cheating and always will be. Would he really be that bold knowing the NCAA is breathing down his neck in the spot he is in now? Tough to say, but he has also branched out and recruited kids that if ended up at any school but with a head coach of John Calipari, nobody would think twice about it. Knight and Jones are solid kids who value education. Why was there a lull in Kentucky’s recruiting earlier this year? Who knows, perhaps it’s because he has to play by the rules now. No gray areas, no shady dealings, no WWW. Is the Enes Kanter situation somewhat shady? Perhaps, but was it when he was committed to UW? I didn’t hear that.
So back to the topic at hand, if the best player in the world is perceived to have interest in being coached by John Calipari, why shouldn’t an 18 year old trying to get to the NBA? Think that’s not a nice recruiting pitch for Cal to use now? What about LeBron showing up at UK games? Drake traveling the country with the team? Think that resonates with high school kids a little bit? How are these appearances orchestrated? I have no idea, but they’ll work and I’m sure they’ve already worked to Kentucky’s benefit to an extent.
What does LeBron get out of this favor? His marketing firm is in the business of attracting young clientele, the best of the best in college basketball. Who is going to be possessing this talent? Calipari and Kentucky. More press, more notoriety, more players. While John Wall may have gone opposite and signed with Dan Fegan, but down the road with this friendship, we’ll see it come to fruition.