A terrific headline and a hilarious premise from Rick Bozich of the Courier-Journal to get the college hoops season started:
There’s nothing Cal enjoys more than trying to treat Pitino and U of L like a piñata … Actually, what makes this unique is if Calipari devoted as much time to solving a 1-3-1 zone as he does to taking shots at Pitino and U of L, he’d be able to discuss something that registers beyond the whole state, like a national championship. Pitino has one, as well as five appearances in the Final Four — none of which has been scrubbed from the NCAA record book.
Multiple shots fired!
[Interruption: Get out your calendar and circle this date - Louisville at Kentucky, Dec. 31, in Rupp Arena. The way this rivalry is headed, it'll be mandatory viewing over whatever Bowl game is on TV.]
What triggered the column were these comments by Calipari earlier this week [my bold for emphasis]:
“It’s a unique thing,” Calipari said. “There’s no other state, none, that’s as connected to their basketball program as this one. Because those other states have other programs. Michigan has Michigan State, California has UCLA, North Carolina has Duke. It’s Kentucky throughout this whole state, and that’s what makes us unique.”
Pitino, obviously seething, lobbed this back at the Kentucky coach:
“Four things I’ve learned in my 59 years about people,” Pitino told CBSSports.com on Wednesday. “I ignore the jealous, I ignore the malicious, I ignore the ignorant and I ignore the paranoid.”
Well, college basketball has arrived. Two days after the NBA basically announces the season is FUBAR, Bozich drops a haymaker of a column on Calipari and Kentucky. Calipari takes a subtle shot at Pitino and Rick goes HAM in response. Love it. A few people have said the NHL could be the big winner if the NBA is locked out for 2-3 months, but I think it really opens the door for college basketball. With traditional powers like Kentucky, UNC and Ohio State stacked, and Louisville, Syracuse, Connecticut and Duke not far behind them, this is shaping up as a spectacular season.
Previously: College Basketball Preseason Top 25
Previously: Rick Pitino Told Police He Had Sex with Karen Sypher and Gave Her $3,000 to Have an Abortion
Previously: I’ve Got Some Issues With the List of the Top 100 Players in College Basketball