The Hall of Fame coach and college basketball analyst for ESPN blasted Calipari’s habit of recruiting players who spend just a year on campus before bolting for the NBA during a speaking engagement in Indiana last weekend.
Knight said in a brief statement released by ESPN on Tuesday: “My overall point is that ‘one-and-dones’ are not healthy for college basketball. I should not have made it personal to Kentucky and its players and I apologize.”
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The Hall of Fame coach blasted Calipari’s habit of recruiting players who spend just a year on campus before bolting for the NBA during a speaking engagement in Indiana over the weekend.
During his remarks Knight claimed several players on Kentucky’s 2009-10 roster did not attend class during the spring semester.
“Kentucky the year before last started five players in the NCAA tournament games that had not been to class that semester,” Knight said. “That’s that one-and-done philosophy.”
The Wildcats went 35-3 that season, falling to West Virginia in the NCAA’s East Regional final. Kentucky started three freshmen _ John Wall, DeMarcus Cousins and Eric Bledsoe _ in the game as well as sophomore forward Darius Miller and junior forward Patrick Patterson.
Kentucky athletic director Mitch Barnhart responded on Monday evening, saying the school took “great offense” to Knight’s “blatantly erroneous” accusations.
“Academic performance has always been a priority at UK,” Barnhart said in a statement. “It’s unfortunate that, although every starter from the 2010 season finished the spring semester in good academic standing, these myths exist.”
Patterson graduated last May while Miller returned for his junior season and was eligible to play all year.
Calipari had no comment, though several players defended themselves.