Unpopular Opinion: Kentucky won’t win another championship under Coach Cal

Kelsey Mattingly

Warning: This is not an attempt to rattle any BBN cages, but an attempt to be completely honest. Kentucky men’s basketball will not win another national title under Coach John Calipari, and here is why…

Coach John Calipari’s only NCAA title came in 2012 versus Kansas in his third season at Kentucky. On the 2011-2012 roster was a unique combination of rookie and veteran players that were precisely the recipe Calipari needed to win it all. Since then, there hasn’t been another team like it.

No matter how much it hurts to admit, the one-and-done system is not getting things “done” in the way fans want. Is this to say Kentucky should nix Coach Cal altogether? Of course not; that would be foolish. However, under this current system, things will not change and a new national title banner will not hang in Rupp Arena.

Now in his ninth season as head coach for UK, Calipari has continued to perpetuate the notion that preparing players for the NBA is his top priority. There is nothing wrong with this and proves he is doing what he thinks is best for his players, but there is a little Catch 22 as well: it doesn’t win championships.

The constant talent churn will never produce results that Kentucky fans are waiting for. Just look at previous title winners. The teams that put up banners are teams with at least a couple of veterans to provide the leadership a team needs. Playing only to up your NBA stock is not going to get the job done.

Have previous Kentucky teams in the Calipari era had this opportunity? Of course they have, but how many have achieved it? This argument could be made for any team competing for the NCAA championship; however, Kentucky is not just any team.

With a clean recruiting slate and the top talent in the nation, it seems as though the Wildcats are constantly set up for victory. What fans aren’t getting out of it, though, is banner number nine.

Though it is at least 100 steps up from Gillespie’s (trial and) era, the golden years of Calipari putting stars in your eyes for a championship are long past. Maybe I sound like a 60-year-old man off his rocker, or maybe, just maybe, I’m right.

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