Report: John Calipari had ‘deep talks’ with Cleveland about coaching position


Before accepting a massive, seven-year contract extension with Kentucky last week worth $52 million, head coach John Calipari had extended talks with the Cleveland Cavaliers about taking over as president and head coach of the organization.

The news was first reported by Adrian Wojnarowski and Brett Dawson of Yahoo Sports on Monday morning.

It’s not all that surprising that Cal would consider a move to Cleveland. Let’s start with the basics: the Cavs have one of the most talented players in the NBA in Kyrie Irving and also just so happen to hold the rights to the No. 1 pick in the 2014 NBA Draft. Irving and one of Andrew Wiggins, Joel Embiid or Jabari Parker would be enough to entice just about any coach to consider a move, and that’s before you consider that a return to the NBA is something that Cal has always seemed to be pining for.

And remember last month, when that random interview with a Cleveland newspaper resulted in headlines across the internet about how much Cal would like to coach LeBron James? You don’t think visions of coaching the best player on the planet in his return to his hometown danced through Cal’s head?

At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter.

Cal signed a seven-year deal with the Wildcats, and, at the very least, used the interest he was getting from Cleveland as leverage to become the second-highest paid coach in the collegiate ranks. And if he’s not leaving for a job that gives him young and talented platers, full control and a massive salary, what job would he realistically leave for at the next level?

Kentucky will enter next season as the No. 1 team in the country, as they only lost Julius Randle and James Young from a team that made the national title game.

VIDEOS: Rhode Island, Maryland exchange heated words in Cancun

Dan Hurley
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No. 2 Maryland finally found their rhythm on Wednesday night, blowing out a good Rhode Island team, 86-63, in the finals of the Cancun Challenge.

Melo Trimble and Rasheed Sulaimon combined for 34 points and eight assists on 13-for-14 shooting and Robert Carter added 15 points, nine boards, three assists and three blocks. Peak Maryland, which is what we saw tonight, is really dangerous.

But Peak Maryland wasn’t the story after the game, as tempers flared in the waning minutes.

It started when Maryland coach Mark Turgeon called a timeout with less than two minutes remaining. Jake Layman had just hit a three to put Maryland up by 24 points and Turgeon wanted to get his walk-ons in the game. Hurley said to the Maryland bench, “We’ll see you again, boy,” according to Inside Maryland Sports, which prompted this reaction from Turgeon:

After the game, the two teams had to be separated in layup lines. According to reports from IMS and from the Baltimore Sun, Hurley was cursing at Maryland players as he was shaking their hands after the game. According Doug Gottlieb, who called the game for CBS Sports Network, Trimble said that the Rhode Island team wanted to “fight us”:

Wayne Selden stars as Kansas wins the title in Maui

Wayne Selden Jr., Jeff Roberson
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The last time we wrote about Wayne Selden in this space, it was my colleague Scott Phillips who questioned, after a poor performance in the Champions Classic, whether or not Selden is capable of bring a primary scorer for a team with NCAA title aspirations.

At the time, it wasn’t an unfair question to ask.

Selden is a former top 15 recruit. He is a guy who was expected to go one-and-done that played poorly in the first big game of his third year on campus. But after three days it Maui, it appears that the old Wayne Selden is gone.

[MORE: Kansas got Cheick Diallo news today]

He capped an MVP performance in the Maui Invitational with 25 points and seven boards on 8-for-11 shooting as the No. 5 Kansas Jayhawks knocked off No. 19 Vanderbilt, 70-63, in the title game. Selden was terrific for the entire weekend, averaging 21.5 points in the two games against Division I competition and shooting 12-for-17 from beyond the arc in the three game tournament.

It was the best that we’ve seen Selden play during his Jayhawk career, and it came in a game the Jayhawks desperately needed it. Vanderbilt is a damn good team. They’re ranked 19th, which may actually be too low, and they seem to clearly be the biggest challenger to Kentucky in the SEC. They jumped out to a double-digit lead on Kansas in the first half as the Jayhawks seemed to be sleep-walking early in the game.

Enter Selden. He drilled three threes in the first half and scored 13 of the 26 Jayhawk points to keep them close. In other words, he played like a star on a night Kansas desperately needed someone to step up and play like a star. Remember: this is a dude that had enough talent and potential in high school to be considered a McDonald’s All-American and a potential lottery pick. The ability is there:

(That move is filthy.)

The question has always been whether or not he is capable of putting it all together, of being the guy that can be relied upon to make the big play in the big moment, to carry a team with title aspirations.

And to be fair, the jury is still out in that regard. Are we just going to ignore those four free throws he clanged down the stretch?

But seeing Selden have this kind of performance in a game like this against a team that is this good is unquestionably a positive for Kansas moving forward.