Welcome to SEC Country’s weekly Kentucky Wildcats basketball podcast, “Everybody’s Superpod,” with Kyle Tucker. Today, we’re joined by Gary Parrish of CBS Sports, who covered John Calipari at Memphis and still lives in that city. There was a lot to talk about as Calipari’s current Kentucky team prepares for an NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 game in his old town.
MEMPHIS, Tenn. — John Calipari is Kevin Durant. Not all Memphis fans hate him. At least one Tigers loyalist would trade a Final Four for his own team in exchange for Calipari being fired by Kentucky. Whew, there’s a lot here.
The Wildcats’ coach is back in Memphis this week for a Sweet 16 against UCLA and possibly an Elite Eight showdown with North Carolina (or Butler) — all at the FedEx Forum, where he used to coach the Memphis Tigers. CBS Sports college basketball analyst Gary Parrish covered Calipari for the local newspaper back then and still lives in the area, so he was an obvious choice to be our guest on Everybody’s Superpod this week.
“This has always been my point of view, and it’s never been popular in Memphis: John Calipari really didn’t do anything other than what most of us do in our career,” Parrish said. “He worked the Memphis job for nine years as hard as he could work it, and then when he was presented with an opportunity that was too good to pass up, he accepted.”
But not everybody in Memphis feels that way. We discuss the haters and the old friends Calipari still has here and has spent some time with in the days leading up to this important game for Kentucky. Speaking of, other topics covered on the podcast:
- Should LaVar Ball, father of UCLA star Lonzo Ball, zip his big mouth? Parrish feels about like the rest of us.
- Thoughts on the De’Aaron Fox vs. Lonzo Ball individual matchup and how Parrish sees the UK-UCLA rematch shaking out. Are the Wildcats legit national title contenders?
- So how about SEC basketball now? With five NCAA Tournament teams, four who reached the second round and three in the Sweet 16 (after South Carolina stunned Duke), has the league finally turned a corner? Parrish’s answer might surprise you.
Miss any of the previous seven episodes of “Everybody’s Superpod,” where Jay Bilas talks aliens, Evan Daniels talks recruiting, Gary Parrish talks naked John Calipari, Tony Delk crushes on Malik Monk, Nolan Richardson relives the SEC’s glory days, Chad Ford breaks down UK’s NBA prospects and the director of Calipari’s upcoming 30 for 30 gives us a sneak preview? Find every edition of SEC Country’s weekly Kentucky Wildcats basketball podcast right here.