John Calipari teaches his players that charity begins with heart and humility, not merely writing a check

We all now that Kentucky is taking an exhibition trip to Canada for a three game series this week.  That will be covered by the national media and highlights will be shown on Sportscenter, etc, and every other outlet.  But how many of those outlets will cover yesterday’s side trip to Detroit, where Coach Cal and his team went the servant route and washed the feet of strangers in conjunction with a program called “Samaritans Feet”?  In case you were unaware, Samaritans Feet is an organization dedicated to giving shoes to the people without shoes and part of the process of presenting the shoes incorporates the biblical act of washing the feet of the less fortunate. 

Every writer or pundit that has written an article blasting Kentucky coach John Calipari or accusing him of shady practices should be required to write a 500 story blurb on the picture above.  Because as much as writers like to harp on what they perceive (I say perceive) because there is no actual proof) to be the bad about John Calipari, they must also focus on the good about John Calipari.  And it has become so evident to me in his 15 months in Lexington, no coach in college basketball does as much good for others as John Calipari.

I can see you rolling your eyes.  I know Billy Donovan, Roy Williams, Coach K, and about every other coach have their own charitable organization that bears their name and they host a few benefits for it each year.  Every coach does that.  And it raises a lot of money for good causes.  But do they actually put their money where their mouth is? 

Have either of them disrupted a perfect season to hold an impromptu telethon for people affected by an earthquake thousands of miles away?  Or have they taken their team on a simple act of washing feet.  I live in Florida and know that Donovan works with some charities and hosts some benefits.  And he and Calipari are active in the Dickie V foundation.  Yet I have not heard of Donovan, Coach K, or Roy taking this lesson of servitude and humility to their team first hand and practicing what they preach. 

Aside from a handful of coaches, you hear very little of the coaches and teams getting “down and dirty” and actually putting the time and effort into teaching their players about humility.  And if the other coaches are doing it to the extent of Calipari and we are not hearing about it, it’s a shame too.

College sports is about more than “x’s and o’s” and wins and losses.  And the few coaches that see that and make a conscious effort to help those around them should be singled out as well. 

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Tags: John Calipari John Calipari Charity

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