Clint Hurtt, John Calipari, and the Hypocrisy of it All

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Feb 20, 2013; Lexington, KY, USA; Kentucky Wildcats head coach John Calipari gives instructions to his team in the second half of the game against the Vanderbilt Commodores at Rupp Arena. Kentucky defeated Vanderbilt 74-70. Mandatory Credit: Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

Many Kentucky fans are revelling in the woes of the U of L football program and the black eye that Hurtt will ultimately give them. The barbs are flying and the jabs are coming fast and furious.

Louisville fans have a ready-made defense for the critics: Whatever illegal actions Hurtt may have participated in happened at the University of Miami and have nothing to do with the University of Louisville.

Louisville fans are correct in their defense. As of now, the NCAA is not investigating Clint’s Hurtt time at Louisville, and whatever penalties they decide to lay down on the coach will have no ill effects on Strong’s program unless it is decided to challenge the show cause penalty. It is extremely doubtful that Louisville will retain Hurtt if show cause is handed down.

But Louisville fans should be able to take whatever criticism or jokes are thrown their way as they have been doing the same thing to Kentucky fans ever since John Calipari was named the head coach of the University of Kentucky basketball program.

Nicknames such as “Pay Pal Cal” and “Cheatapari” are common place for Cardinal fans that want to accuse the Kentucky coach and program of being dirty. But here is where the hypocrisy is blindingly obvious: Cal’s alleged transgressions, which he has never been blamed for I might add, all occurred somewhere other than the University of Kentucky. But this did not stop Louisville fans from using the accusation for their benefit.

So what’s the difference between Hurtt’s alleged wrong doings at Miami and Cal’s alleged wrong doings at Memphis and UMass? Why are Louisville fans comfortable in calling one a cheater while they say “Let’s hold judgement” on the other? This is hypocrisy at it’s finest.

The difference between Cal and Hurtt is simple: John Calipari has never been personally found guilty by the NCAA for violations and was called an “innocent victim” in the Marcus Camby casewhereas Hurtt is directly implicated in wrong-doing.

If Hurtt is found guilty of the charges and fired from Louisville, then Louisville fans need to take a step back from the Calipari name calling.

The facts remain that Hurtt and Cal have blemishes on their respective records from when they worked for other universities.

This is all part of a never-ending pissing contest between Kentucky and Louisville fans. Both sides of the aisle wear red or blue blinders that direct attention to the faults of the rival program while deflecting the blemishes of their own.

While I hope for a truce and an understanding between the two fan bases, I know that is never going to happen. I know that certain Louisville fans will mock this article and will continue to point out vacated Final Fours despite the facts that they were vacated due to Marcus Camby’s personal actions and due to Derrick Rose allegedly doing something before he even commited to Cal’s Memphis program. But it’s all well and good in the minds of Cardinal fans to continue to beat this dead horse while bristling when one of their own’s checkered past is questioned and brought to light.

One thing that both sides of the aisle can agree on is that the NCAA is a corrupt organization that arbitrarily hands out penalties to those they deem guilty while letting some programs get away with much more serious offenses. There needs to be an overhall in the NCAA as they have admittedly botched the Miami situation.

Whatever the fate of Clint Hurtt, be rest assured that this will not be the end of the bickering. Kentucky fans will continue to argue for the NCAA to continue to dig into the Louisville program and Teddy Bridgewater; while Louisville fans will continue to plead their case that John Calipari is indeed paying players large sums of cash and that World Wide Wes was indeed on the grassy knoll.

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