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UK’s Calipari-To-The-Knicks? Yeah, Yeah. But What’s This About His Propaganda Push?

John Calipari says he wants to coach an undefeated team.  That’d be a lot easier done in the college ranks (about 40 games) than in the pros (82 games plus umpteen rounds of playoffs).  But that’s not stopping yet another Cal-to-the-Knicks story from making the rounds.  Only this one has a funny sidenote included.

Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports writes today that Calipari now has a collegiate title and the New York Knicks have “a vacancy, a big stage and a blank check.” 

“Money matters to Calipari — matters a lot — and rest assured that Calipari will get Kentucky to push past his $5 million a season salary.  How far does UK go, though?  Six million?  Seven?  Kentucky doesn’t lose bidding wars, but it would lose this one.”

Then comes the obligatory mention of uber-agent William “Worldwide Wes” Wesley, his connections to Calipari and several NBA stars, etc, etc.  We’ve all been down this road before.

But what’s really interesting is found right at the top of Wojnarowski’s story.  According to the writer, Calipari grew so tired/worried about the daily talkshow ripping he took on New York radio as coach of the New Jersey Nets back in the ’90s that he had an intern start calling in for propaganda purposes.

“Anthony from Hoboken” would call into WFAN-AM — as ordered by Calipari — to defend Calipari from the criticism he took from other callers.

Do we at doubt that story?  No.  Friends of coaches have long had their own agendas when it comes to talk radio.  So it isn’t that far-fetched to think that an ego-driven coach — and most of them are very ego-driven — would put someone up to calling in on his behalf.

Vanderbilt’s James Franklin has gained a reputation for calling into Nashville’s WGFX-FM himself when he hears rival Tennessee getting too much positive publicity.

So we’ll bite on the “Anthony from Hoboken” story. 

But not on the Calipari-to-the-Knicks bit.



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