Calipari, Coach K, Boeheim Embroiled in Flap

Three of college basketball's most recognizeable figures have found themselves embroiled in a mini-controversy this week.

A Yahoo Sports column written by Adrian Wojnarowski took Duke's Mike Krzyzewski to task for using the position of USA Basketball head coach as an unfair recruiting advantage due to the contact and exposure to young prospects it affords him during the process.

Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim, who served as an assistant for Krzyzewski on the national team, took issue with the article and suggested in another story that Kentucky's John Calipari had voiced concerns about the advantage to USA Basketball. That prompted the UK boss to respond Thursday afternoon via Twitter.

"Jim’s comments were brought to my attention & I called him," Calipari wrote. "We are friends. I have unbelievable respect for him & how he runs his program. Any concerns that college coaches have had in the past have always been addressed by USA basketball.

"The job that Coach K and Coach Boeheim have done to turn around USA Basketball, to make it what it is today is truly amazing. If – and I emphasize if – they gained any advantage, because of that work, I don’t begrudge them in the least.

"My time with the DR (Dominican Republic) team showed me how hard & how much time it takes away from your own team & your recruiting to do those things right. There’s not a college coach in the country that would say no to Jerry Colangelo if he asked them to coach the national team. My hope is they would handle it the same way it’s being handled now."

Many will be quick to point out that, while Krzyzewski has exprerienced an uptick in recruiting while leading USA Basketball, Calipari has also been a beneficiary due to his time spent with the DRNT. That stint may have helped the Cats sign one of the nation's top big man prospects in the Class of 2014, 7-footer Karl Towns Jr., who was able to spend significant time on the UK campus working out with Calipari and the DRNT.


AllWildcats Top Stories