SEC radio host Paul Finebaum made his thoughts known when it comes to Kentucky basketball coach John Calipari and the Wildcats lack of success this season.
Kentucky basketball coach John Calipari will be the first one to tell you that playing at UK is not for everyone. Paul Finebaum seems to believe that Cal should be taking some of his own advice.
While speaking on McElroy and Cubelic in the Morning, Finebaum called it “a critical couple of weeks for him (Calipari) to state the very obvious.”
Paul Finebaum calls Kentucky basketball coach John Calipari’s job into question
It’s fair to be critical of John Calipari and how the Kentucky Wildcats have performed, not just this season, but the last three years. Cal’s group was ranked 4th in the nation in the preseason AP Top 25, and with reigning Player of the Year Oscar Tshiebwe returning, UK was expected to one of the best teams in college basketball this season.
Things didn’t go as planned and Kentucky enters March Madness as a No. 6 seed. This, after a first-round exit courtesy of Saint Peter’s last year, a 9-17 showing in 2020-21, and the cancellation of the 2020 postseason due to the coronavirus. Cal’s Cats haven’t advanced in the NCAA Tournament since making it to the Elite Eight in 2019.
Now, it’s important to remember that Calipari had one of the best teams in the country during the 2019-20 season with a record of 25-6. The Wildcats were No. 1 in the SEC and boasted a backcourt of Tyrese Maxey and Immanuel Quickley. Kentucky basketball finished that season ranked No. 8 in the country after the SEC and NCAA Tournaments were cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Finebaum said there’s no specific “end date” in the tournament for the Wildcats, suggesting that this season isn’t National Title or bust (though there are members of Big Blue Nation that would disagree with that statement).
But Finebaum believes it’s a virtual must for Kentucky basketball to advance to the Sweet Sixteen or John Calipari’s seat could become quite warm heading into next season despite his lifetime contract.
Most outlets rate Calipari’s incoming freshmen class as the best in the country, and the list of potential replacements for the Hall of Fame coach is not very long. But Cal needs his troops to have a good showing in the NCAA Tournament. The Wildcats begin tournament play on Friday night in Greensboro against the Providence Friars.