After knocking off College of Charleston 69-62 Tuesday night at the KFC Yum! Center, UofL head coach Rick Pitino has decided to add another game before Friday’s scheduled meeting with Western Kentucky.
The opposing team will be comprised of Lebron James and the ghost of Wilt Chamberlain. Also, Artis Gilmore has perfected time travel technology and will send his 1974 self to 2011 to take part along with the three members of the Fab Five you can actually remember.
OK, not really, but this would be the only team that would live up to the hyperbole Pitino bestows on nearly everything and everyone. Each year, he's coaching the "toughest schedule" he has ever had. I guess he’s throwing out those years with the Knicks and the Celtics. Pitino has even gone so far as to call one of his past UofL teams "the toughest" he's coached. He’s obviously throwing out the years with the Knicks and the Celtics there, too.
Pitino called CofC “as good as anybody that will come to (to the Yum! Center) this year.” Even he had to acknowledge that the media thought he was giving them the “Lou Holtz” treatment (In his coaching career, Holtz famously called every upcoming opponent one of the best in the country at something). Maybe that says more about the home schedule than it does about College of Charleston.
Pitino said Antwaine Wiggins of CofC was similar to Dallas Mavericks forward Lamar Odom. Wiggins kind of lived up to that hype with a 23 point and seven rebound performance against the Cardinals. Pitino compared the Cougars Trent Wiedeman to former Notre Dame big man Luke Harangody. Wiedeman had four points and six rebounds. Pitino was 1-for-2 on comparisons.
The truth is: the Louisville Cardinals are good. They’re top five in the nation for a reason. If they can stay healthy, this is not a team that will lose to a mid-major in the first round of the NCAA tournament.
Tuesday night also saw another school you’ve never heard of leave this state with a huge loss. The Samford School of Textile and Auto Repair (or something) came on out and took their whoopin’ by the Kentucky Wildcats 82-50 at Rupp Arena.
Leading up to the Samford game, Calipari spent most of the time talking about his own team rather than trying to pump up the Fighting Balloon Knots (or whatever they were). Granted, CofC was a much better, talented team than Samford’s but really…
Calipari regaled the media prior to the Samford game with a wonderful story about about how some of the players had started a “Breakfast Club,” a group that would get together early in the morning and work out on their own. Nice team sentiment but the truth surfaced later that freshman Michael Kidd-Gilchrist was the early riser, Calipari found out and suggested he invite some of the other guys to join him. The story is being sent back for a re-write.
Not long now until both Calipari and Pitino MUST actually talk about the other’s teams. I have a feeling the media won’t let Pitino off with an off-handed “they’re super” remark or let Calipari avoid talking about the Cardinals and all about his own team.
Just once, I’d love to hear Pitino and Calipari speak truthfully about their upcoming opponent. Since I’m asking, why not have that happen…oh, I don’t know…maybe sometime after December 28th?
Photo illustration by John Lewis and MS Paint