“This Program Needs To Hear Another Voice” – John Calipari Officially Announces That He’s Stepping Down At Kentucky Amid Arkansas Rumors

John Calipari
John Calipari

A goodbye to Big Blue Nation.

John Calipari’s departure from the University of Kentucky was somewhat strange. After a first round exit in the NCAA tournament, some fans were calling for the Wildcats to part ways with their coach… but the school (and most of BBN) decided they wanted to continue the Calipari experience.

So fans quickly turned from wanting him fired to accepting his return, talking themselves into another go around with Coach Cal. And then a couple of weeks after, in the dead of the night, rumors started flying that Calipari was taking a deal to become the next head coach at the University of Arkansas.

To recap, Cal almost got fired, he kept his job, and then he left on his own. The classic “I’m going to break up with you before you break up with me” scenario. Are we all caught up? Great, let’s move right along.

The only time we’ve really seen or heard from Coach Cal after everything unraveled was a weird video that someone took while he was trying to walk his dogs around Lexington, Kentucky. It was honestly hilarious:

Walking your dog around in a stroller is a tough look, isn’t it? Especially during a time of turnover like this one.

But earlier today, John Calipari finally broke his silence and broke through the rumors with a filmed message that confirmed that his time at the University of Kentucky had come to an end. He first started out his emotional video with this:

“Since our season ended, Ellen and I have spent a lot of time thinking about our time here at Kentucky. What it means to us, the friends we’ve made… on that court, regional championships, conference championships, final fours, the national title in 2012.

It’s been a beautiful time for us. This is a dream job. It was my dream job. Anybody in our profession looks at the University of Kentucky and basketball and says, ‘That is the bluest of blue.'”

“The bluest of the blue” meaning Kentucky being a blue blood program, not just the fact that UK’s color scheme includes a whole lot of blue.

Calipari went on to say that he and his wife Ellen had only come to this conclusion in the past couple of weeks, and once they did, they felt as though now was the right time to close the book on their time at Kentucky:

“The last few weeks, we’ve come to realize that this program probably needs to hear another voice. That the university as a whole has to have another voice giving guidance about this program. And the fans need to hear another voice. We’ve loved it here, but we think it’s time for us to step away.”

And while no official announcement has been made on the expected move to Arkansas, Calipari gets more into his decision and his potential future moves in the rest of the message, which you can view below:

Oh, and the cherry on top? That was actually Coach Cal’s second try at posting the video, after the first one was deleted because it was blurry and, as the comments point out, looked like it was recorded on his flip phone.

What a bizarre ending for the coach of one of the most storied programs in college basketball.

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock