Calipari is quick to point out that there is a model for his new program and, while Kentucky fans might not like it, it’s Duke. The Blue Devils played one prime time away game against the Ohio State Buckeyes, but all of the rest of their big non-conference games were on neutral floors. That’s pretty much what Coach K does every season and nobody makes a peep.
Here are Duke’s big non-con games from 2011-2012:
Michigan State- Neutral (Madison Square Garden)
Tennessee- Neutral (Maui Invitational)
Michigan- Neutral (Maui Invitational)
Kansas- Neutral (Maui Invitational)
Ohio State- Away (Columbus, OH)
Washington- Neutral (Madison Square Garden)
Temple- Neutral (Wells Fargo Center)
And there you have it. Duke played some pretty stiff competition, but only one of the games was a true road game. This is what Calipari wants.
No one seems to be mad about the way Duke does it. We’ve got a number of things going on, and we’ll get it done.
The fact that Duke gets away with it is because, well because it’s Duke. Calipari wants the same leeway afforded to his team that everybody allows Duke. Let us play big time programs under our own terms.
Imagine the possibilities of playing Texas, Michigan State, Duke, Syracuse, Ohio State and a host of others on a rotating basis in football stadiums, invitationals and legendary basketball NBA arenas. This is the type of exposure and excitement that UK fans live and breathe for.
No other college basketball team is expected to play in as many big time home-home series as Kentucky. The Wildcats have defeated 26 top 25 teams since Cal has taken over duties as the head coach.
“Non-Traditional Program” is the new Kentucky battle cry, replacing “The Kentucky Effect.” There is no need to argue with the man’s results. Get on board or get out of the way.