Yesterday Wildcat fans were buzzing with excitement about the improved play of Skal Labissiere and the Cats tournament chances. Then some news broke that was so much bigger than anything that happened on the basketball court this weekend. It all came from one short and simple tweet
Blessed to be able to say I’ll be apart of the #BBN next year!!??
— Brad Calipari (@bradcalipari) March 6, 2016
It has long been rumored that there was a chance that Brad Calipari would want to play for his dad at Kentucky. For the last few years I have stated on multiple occasions that the most important recruit for Big Blue Nation to keep an eye on was Brad. He is a 6’0 shooting guard that has received some interest from lower division one schools because of his outside shooting. So why the fuss over a guy that is not a blue chip recruit? It is because it is an emphatic answer to the never ending question off if John Calipari will head to the NBA anytime in the near future. Every coaching job that opens up seems to always drag Cal into the discussion and fans have to sweat it out till Cal shoots the rumor down over and over. Last July in an interview with ESPN Cal was asked about what it would mean if Brad came to UK and here is what he said.
First of all, my wife has already told me if he decides to come, ‘You’re not leaving,’ so that would mean I’m here five more years, If I’m here five more years, why not stay ’til 70, why not sign a new contract and I’ll be 70 when I leave. Seems like everyone coaches until 70, I was thinking 60, but maybe I’ll coach until 72, maybe 73. If he comes and he wants to walk on, to be able to spend four years with my son and the ups and downs of this? The only thing is he likes to talk back. You can’t do that when you’re playing for me.
Sounds like a pretty clear answer as to why Brad Calipari is so important. Not only is it huge in terms of keeping Cal as a coach but it will also be a great help in the recruiting game. Rival coaches do not have much to use negatively against Cal and UK but one thing was the constant NBA rumor mill. Opposing coaches tell recruits that Cal will jump for the NBA and that it is just a matter of time. Now recruits can know with certainty that Cal will be at Kentucky for at least four more years. Then what if Brad wants to get into coaching as a graduate assistant at UK? The implications of yesterdays announcement can not be over stated. The longer John Calipari coaches at Kentucky the more likely he retires at UK.
With the SEC tournament around the corner it is time for BBN to head to Nashville and see what this team can become in March. Now they can do it knowing that John Calipari will be roaming the sidelines for several more years. This is an epic era for Kentucky Basketball that will be long remembered. Enjoy every minute of it Big Blue Nation!