clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Agreeing With John Calipari Isn't Always Easy

We don't agree with John Calipari a lot, but we do in this case, with one minor objection.

It is completely ridiculous and contrary to every involved parties interest to limit food for athletes. Surely reasonable people can find a decent solution for this. Not only are college athletes between the ages of 18-22, they are typically larger and burn more calories. It's just stupid.

Now the minor objection.

Calipari says this: “We go so hard and train so much that these kids exert and spend a lot of energy. Are we not going to let them refuel? If they want to grab some a snack at their dorm because they’re starving after a practice, we aren’t going to let them because there aren’t snacks at the other dorms?”

Do we remember incorrectly or, as part of an earlier reform, weren't basketball players integrated into other dorms - or was it that normal students were allowed to live in Wildcat Lodge?

So in one breath, Calipari is urging more fair treatment for his players, but in the next, he's reminding us that at UK, players are treated like kings.

Calipari wants, quite literally, to have his cake and eat it too.

Perhaps the answer is this: find some donors to provide snacks to all the dorms. Then the NCAA can't argue that his players are getting special treatment. Or at least not when it comes to food.

But check out this video with Calipari showing off the new Wildcat Coal Lodge (which replaced the older Wildcat Lodge), where he explains that they can get drinks, nuts or bagels 24/7. We didn't see where they store the bagels or nuts, but the refrigerator is open. It's not like they're pumping quarters in.

Go to the 4:30 mark where the coach goes to the kitchen and talks to the chef, explaining that he takes care of the guys and that if you ask for a grilled cheese, a hamburger, cheese steak or wings for dinner, head chef Chris Cain can accommodate you.

This was after he explained that the very fine security system the building has makes sure that no one who isn't supposed to be in gets in.

So we're supposed to believe that in a tightly secured building with a private chef, no one takes food to their room or has a key to the kitchen?

Look, we agree with him on the basic point here, but arguing that his players are suffering requires you to overlook the entire history of Kentucky basketball. You can apply many terms to Kentucky basketball, but we can't think of many people who would suggest underprivileged is one.

When he continues on to Kyle Wiltjer's room, which is very well appointed, one of the first things we noticed was the styrofoam box in a refrigerator with a clear door.

Obviously it's possible that Wiltjer paid for it, but it's more likely, one would think, that he just brought food back for a snack.

Which he should be able to do, and which, perhaps, he and his teammates already do.

We agree with the man, but it's kind of ridiculous for Calipari to make this argument when his players have a private chef and palatial accommodations, not to mention circumstantial evidence that the rule is being ignored anyway.