Kentucky, a work in progress

Former Kentucky Wildcat, and All American, Kenny "Sky" Walker discusses his thoughts on what he has seen from Kentucky's new basketball coach, Billy Gillispie. Walker said, "It is Billy Gillispie's way or the highway. I think that is the way it is going to be."

Coach Billy Gillispie is really trying to get this team's attention and show them that the guys who play hard in practice are the ones who are going to get the playing time. I think that is a tough thing for all of us fans to try and understand because we already have in our minds the guys who can play and the guys who can't play.

I think coach Gillispie is sending a message from day one that if you don't get it done in practice, you are not going to start or play much in a game.

I think the toughest thing about Billy Gillispie so far is just trying to figure out his combinations, his starting lineups, which is going to be on the floor. I think that is just going to be a work in progress for the whole year. I don't think anybody knows from game to game what is going to happen with this guy. Until he is around here a little bit longer, I don't know if we will be able to figure that out. Again, that's why the toughest thing for me right now has been trying to figure out his combinations and why he is playing certain players and why certain guys are starting.

He is going on what he sees in practice and he is letting it be known that if you don't do what he wants you to do, you don't play. It makes no difference what the fans or media say, you have to do what the coach says. I think he is still in the process of trying to figure all that out.

He pushes his team hard and maybe some of the things fans are hearing right now with these tough game-day practices has them wondering what is going on. I think he is trying to get them in shape really fast. The season started early. He didn't get a chance to practice these guys like he wanted.

I think if he is guilty of anything, I think it would be that he wants it to happen with this team right now. With any coach, we all know there is a transition period. Gillispie is not going to settle for that transition period to happen down the road, he is pushing for that to happen now.

The transition is hard on Gillispie. It is obviously hard on the players, but you have to give him credit. He has not changed since he has been here. It is Billy Gillispie's way or the highway. I think that is the way it is going to be.

We will have to see how all the hard work pays off. You can't criticize it yet because we haven't seen it enough to see if it will work or not.

If he wins, it is a good thing. If he doesn't win and they don't play well, it could potentially be a problem. That's just the way it is with Kentucky basketball.


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