Is The NCAA Unfairly Targeting Cal and UK?

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In his first year at Kentucky, John Calipari recruited the top class in the country. A trend that has continued in the 2010 and it appears even the 2011 recruiting class as he once again pulled in talent with the likes of Knight, Kanter, Jones and Lamb and early 2011 commits from Gilchrist and Teague.

Calipari’s ability to get top notch Players is by design. He has proven that players like Wall and Bledsoe can play together  without diminishing each others value at the next level. He’s also proven that he’s a master at preparing talent for the next level with the likes of Rose, Wall, Cousins and Patterson. Now, at Kentucky, not only can he point to his ability to prepare players for the next level, but he has the power of the most elite College Basketball program in the Nation. A name, that when mentioned, automatically makes just about anyone think of basketball. Even individuals who don’t follow college sports typically will tell you that Kentucky is a basketball school.

So what’s the point here? This has been stated a googleplex of times by every media in the country. Here’s a scenario of what might happen. Calipari goes into a home and signs a recruit, Teague or Jones as an example. The coach who had previously received a commitment isn’t going to be happy, Pitino or Romar in this case. Calipari grabs three or four recruits and head coach’s begin raising eyebrows, eyebrows that can include the NCAA.

So the question, is the NCAA unfairly targeting Calipari and UK? Probably not.. Does it look that way? Absolutely… Articles have stated that the NCAA tends to target high powered recruits like a John Wall, Brandon Knight, Enes Kanter, DeMarcus Cousins, Eric Bledsoe, Marquis Teague. Any of those sound familiar?

Does this mean other Coach’s and University’s aren’t trying to get the NCAA to raise their eyebrows a little more then normal? Sure it does. Does it mean that the NCAA is trying to find something on Calipari? My thoughts only, sure it does. I truly believe the powers to be are intent on finding wrong-doings with Coach Cal.

Coaching Kentucky just heightens the awareness. Now they can legitimately look into four or five top notch recruits a year and not deviate from their what appears to be a normal policy of targeting the recruitment of top prospects. It’s not always the NCAA that is looking either. Media can play a big part in the investigation role. Take the NY Times story on Bledsoe. If they didn’t do the research and write the story, odds are nothing would have ever surfaced about the possible issues, the state of Alabama wouldn’t be doing an investigation and the NCAA might not have ever been mentioned.

Should the University step up their internal and external investigations of possible recruits, especially high profile players? Yes they should. It is Coach Calipari and the University’s responsibility to ensure these athletes are clean and that they stay that way during their time at Kentucky. A job that is easier said then done, but one that can be accomplished if placed as the priority.

As a UK fan we just have to deal with what comes with recruiting elite players – and that’s added scrutiny. All of UK’s recruits now will be circled by sleezy agents, and all the players will have the opportunity to develop unhealthy relationships with them. It’s the state of the game. Do I want Cal to stop recruiting elite players? Heck no.

So, my advice for UK fans: don’t worry until there’s a reason to. It’s just the way we’re going to have to be.

Go Big Blue!!!

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  1. […] Is the NCAA unfairly targeting John Calipari? asks Chip Miller of Big Blue Nation. […]



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  • Chip Miller can be contacted via e-mail at ukbigbluenation@live.com.
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