What they are saying around the country

Believe it or not, one or two people across the country took notice of the fact that the Wildcats are announcing the hiring of a new head coach, John Calipari. Here is some of the buzz from around the country:

Believe it or not, one or two people across the country took notice of the fact that the Wildcats are announcing the hiring of a new head coach, John Calipari. Here is some of the buzz from around the country:

Calipari had expressed significant interest in the Kentucky job over the last few years, sources told FOXSports.com, and was disappointed that he wasn't contacted two years ago prior to the hiring of Gillispie. Another motivating factor behind the decision, according to a source, was being down the road from Louisville coach Rick Pitino. The two have not gotten along in recent years and Calipari would likely relish the opportunity to go head-to-head against Pitino both on the court and in recruiting. – Jeff Goodman, Fox Sports

Seriously, see if this isn't short-sheet-the-bed hilarious: In two years, Kentucky has gone from paying national championship-winning coach Tubby Smith $2.1 million a year to reportedly forking over $31.65 million plus incentives over eight years for a coach with less bling on his finger and more bones in his closet. –Pat Forde, ESPN

Coach Cal can get players. He got Derrick Rose and Tyreke Evans to Memphis. He has commitments from top 10 players DeMarcus Cousins and Xavier Henry and John Wall, considered by some recruiting analysts as the nation's top prospect, was reportedly leaning toward Memphis. Expect all of them to follow Cal to the Blue Grass State. If you want to dream a little, Kentucky fan, how about stars Jodie Meeks and Patrick Patterson passing up the NBA Draft and returning for 2009-10? Suddenly, the Wildcats go from an NIT team to a Final Four contender. -BLAIR KERKHOFF, Kansas City Star

For Calipari, 50, Kentucky could be the last stop in an illustrious career that includes two Final Fours. His only forgettable stint was a job with the NBA's New Jersey Nets. In an interview last month, the coach said he will likely retire by the time he's 60. He is considered one of the game's top recruiters despite the disparity in the name brand between Memphis and tradition-rich schools such as Kansas, North Carolina and Duke. – Marlen Garcia, USA Today

It's the marriage of one of the most powerful programs in basketball history with a head coach who is on top of his game as a recruiter right now. For Kentucky, it's the perfect storm. He's going to be a load for the rest of the guys to deal with. - Dave Telep, national recruiting director for Scout.com.


AllWildcats Top Stories