I’m shocked, I tell you, shocked to know that UK would actually try to influence the decision of Daniel Orton, a prime recruit, by hiring his father and brother — legally, it is said — to make speeches at summer hoops camps. Never say it.
Truth is I’m not here to bust Big Blue balls over this obviously feisty if ethically shaky move. UK is not the first school to do this, nor, no matter what rules the NCAA may change or impose, the last. The Danny Manning Syndrome is alive and well. (FYI — Kansas and coach Larry Brown hired Manning’s dad, Ed, as an assistant. Son matriculated in Lawrence. Result: National title in upset over Oklahoma.)
And before the red & black suck ups who fill the message boards with their blind faith start in on the Cats listen up. U of L is not with clean hands here. Though I am sure that recent successes on the court and Rick Pitino’s reputation and recruiting saavy make it a different, cleaner situation these days.
A fellow named Darryl Sharp was hired to be an assistant in the basketball department a decade or so ago. By all accounts, he is/was a bright engaging fellow with more than a little hoops knowledge. Yet his primary asset happened to be that he had major connections with Reece Gaines. And, I’m told, was part of the deal to seal the recruitment of that Wisconsin hot shot.
It happens. It’s a loathsome practice in the increasingly high stakes world of college hoops. Those of us who love the sport more than any other must turn the other cheek, hold our noses and forge ahead with our love of the game.
It stinks. But it’s reality. Move on.
– Seedy K