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Jay Bilas Joins the Calipari Defender Camp


See a lot of times you folks defame the Duke Law graduates of the world and blame me for people like Wojo and Laettner that make our collective skin crawl. But sometimes we have good insight and utilize our abilities for the good. Take this great (Insider) article from ESPN by a fellow alum and friend of KSR, Jay Bilas. He takes many of Calipari’s critics to task, including implicitly his fellow Bristolite Pat Forde. I cant reprint it all (although I wish I could), but here are a few highlights:

So far, the biggest target in this saga has been Calipari. Because we have this ridiculous notion that the head coach is responsible for everything that goes on in his program, Calipari is taking the blame even though his name is not even mentioned in the Notice of Allegations. Remember, the Notice mentioned the name of a representative of Memphis’ athletic interests over a single phone call. If the NCAA had anything on Calipari, it would have unloaded it in the Notice. It does not.

And later…

Call me old-fashioned, but I require established facts and evidence before I call someone a cheater. I am not naive about the way things work in basketball, because I see it every day. But there is a difference between the problems with the culture in the game and making specific allegations of academic fraud against an individual. We all share the blame collectively for what is going on in the game, but we should require more evidence and hard facts before we indict any individual.

So far, the only “evidence” against Calipari is that he was the head coach, and the head coach is responsible for everything that happens on his watch, that he was the head coach at UMass when Marcus Camby accepted money from an agent and the head coach is responsible for everything that happens on his watch, and he’s at Memphis and he lets Worldwide Wes and the FedEx CEO hang around his program.

And later…

And to continue to discredit Calipari with references to wrongdoing he played no part in is simply wrong. If there is evidence that Calipari knew about or participated in the alleged academic fraud, then bring it forward. Just mentioning Camby and a vacated Final Four appearance does not tell us anything about the current situation.

Maybe Calipari and Memphis had a part in this alleged wrongdoing. But maybe, just maybe, they did not. As reasonable people, we should establish the facts first. Just because the NCAA alleges something doesn’t make it true.

Until then, a deep breath and some perspective wouldn’t hurt.

Get em Jay! You are exactly right and once again show why you are the best in the business….

Article written by Matt Jones

34 responses to “Jay Bilas Joins the Calipari Defender Camp”

  1. Kennybuckets

    FINALLY some support….not to mention reason!

  2. StuckAtWork

    Well that was refreshing. Much better than Ford’s vomit, much better. I guess that’s the difference in talent and stupidity.

  3. MGH

    Jay! Jay! Jay! Jay!

  4. BuckeyeBigBlueFan


  5. BuckeyeBigBlueFan

    Even for a Dookie, Jay is usually pretty reasonable about stuff in college basketball. I think if more of the pundits took a look at the facts rather than trying to find a slant on a story that really doesn’t exist, then this story would be less of a deal than it’s been made out to be.

  6. yen

    holy $#!+ Karen Sypher spills the details on her affair/impregnation by Rick Pitino, disturbing stuff:

  7. natureboy

    I’ve always admired Bilas as an analyst. He is unbiased and doesn’t let anything (or anyone) sway his opinion. A lot of UK fans were angry when he was claiming that UK should not have been in the NCAA tourney a couple of years ago. He was just reporting with the same logic that he is now. He has even admitted to being a big UK fan. I forgive him for being a Duke grad.

  8. slappy

    Pat Forde, that one’s for you.

  9. Band Of BlueCats

    One thing about Bilas is he is always reasonable.

  10. UKtrueblue

    Forde can eat a dick!

  11. roedingb1

    Thank god someone analyst at espn has some sense. Why is all the attention on calipari anyway? There is a federal investigation going on an hour down the road and all they can talk about is. calipari. If forde didn’t have his nose so far up pitinos a$$ espn would be covering the real story going on with one of the college basketball coaches in the great state!

  12. Mr. Wrestling II

    #7: Fail.

  13. nosleeptil8

    I’ve long thought Mr. Bilas was the smartest and most unbiased analyst on espn, this proves it!!!

  14. WildcatRX7

    Why is the only unbiased article on ESPN an Insider only story!!!

  15. StitchJonesSays

    Charlie Murphy on the left!

  16. ChicagoWildcat

    15 – Because this is what ESPN has become when the dog days of summer start to roll around. They will continue to talk about Cal and UK on Sportscenter and leave the reasoning to insider, because that is what pulls in the ratings. It’s the same thing with Brett Farve. ESPN tried their hardest to make it a story this offseason before it was a story, and assuming Farve actually now is a story (I remain skeptical).

    That being said Bilas is far and away ESPN’s best CBB analyst for both on the court ball and off the court news. Anyone else remember two years ago when ESPN was in full-on-fellatio mode over Billy Donovan returning to Florida and “turning down the big money in Orlando”? I remember a Jay Bilas that was the only one on ESPN with enough salt to call Donovan out for his BS, going back on his word, first saying he wasn’t leaving UF, then leaving for the Magic, then two days later reneging on a signed contract with Orlando.

    I love Jay Bilas. Yes, he’s also duke boy, but i’m not ashamed. He’s pretty much the only Dukie that I can say that about.

  17. yen

    the Leroy Smith sketches have Dave Chappelle’s fingerprints all over them, but I can’t find confirmation.

  18. kevinktaylor

    15 – seconded…thirded…forthed…fifthed…OK that’s enough.

  19. HeGetsIt

    What is chapping my ass is how news outlets (I’m looking at you ESPN) are now reporting the story of Dozier’s SAT score as if it is a pattern of behavior and some unintelligent people won’t see the facts, just tie it to a pattern involving Coach Calipari. However there is no reason to release this story as he was going to Georgia and they had a problem with his SAT score….tired of all these agendas

  20. nosleeptil8

    ESPN The Worldwide leader in unsubstantiated reporting and overwhelmingly biased opinions.

    I hear thats the new slogan.

  21. Megan Calipari Is Fine!

    jimmy dykes? anybody? hes the biggest UK fan espn has

  22. IkeDaddyUK

    22-I once heard he got to sleep on Adoph Rupp’s old couch by making a VIOLENT CUT!

  23. ukhooligan

    i’ve been a HUGE fan of bilas in the last few years. hes the ONLY analyst that is genuinely unbiased that i can think of. well, maybe there’s a few but he’s solid.

  24. cobrecat

    The odds are most any dookie can be right at least once.

  25. jreeves5319

    Jay Bilas is a stand up guy…

    As a Dukie he could just jump on the Forde bandwagon and rip on Calipari but he decided to take the high road.

    I sent him an email this season asking about Gillispie and what he thought should happen.

    He replied after only a day or two and said that he thought Gillispie’s days were numbered due to his “extracurricular activities” — that’s how he put it.

    Pretty much on point and very funny!

    Good to see someone on the ESPN team has their head on straight.

  26. Jack Bauer

    Jay Bilas is hands down the best in the business.

  27. Duke_Fan_Comes_In_Peace

    I love Jay B, but he’s dead wrong here.

  28. secretagent0014

    28. You can leave in peace too

  29. billmill87

    I love UK fans. I am one of them included in this. Two years ago we were calling for Bilas’s head because he didnt think 12-4 in SEC UK should have been in the NCAA tourney. We bad mouthed him so bad. But when he writes something good about them he redeems himself. lol. I can’t give a Dukie much credit, but even my wife, a UL fan, said this article makes a lot of sense.

  30. WildcatDJ

    Jay Bilas gives one of the most objective views on every situation he responds to, unlike that turd Forde.

  31. Big Blue Cali-Zone

    I have always hated Bilas, him being a preppy Duke boy, who has murmerd out ACC Hometown spew for most of his career. So what the tell do I do now? I can’t hate him anymore, he’s in our corner for once in his life. What I would Love, is a face to face encounter on ESPN between Bilas and Pat I’d suck 14 for a dozen and swear I was still hungry Forde on this topic. Forde is a punk,he looks like one and acts like one. I’d love to Hillbilly smack the dogshit out of him.

  32. The Big Blue Daily Mail — News for Kentucky Wildcat Fans, June 4th, 2009 |

    […] Jay Bilas Joins the Calipari Defender Camp.Someone linked the ESPN Insider teaser yesterday. Here is some commentary from Kentucky Sports Radio. If Jay’s argument sounds familiar, it is because it is the one I have been making for days on end. […]

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  34. Jay Bilas defends Calipari |

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