Well, that's it. Enough is enough. Billy Gillispie needs to go!
Even though I thought it was a mistake by Kentucky to hire Gillespie to replace the under-appreciated Tubby Smith, I gave the man the benefit of the doubt. Not because I personally saw potential in his abilities, but because Texas coach Rick Barnes and Oklahoma coach Jeff Capel both assured me that Gillispie was capable of being the coach UK needed.
Maybe they were trying to hype up the Big 12 or maybe they simply didn't want to bad mouth Gillispie, but either way, they were wrong. Gillispie is about as far away from being the coach UK needs as Chris Brown is from being Time's Man of the Year.
Not only is the team under performing--NBA execs tell me both Jodie Meeks and Patrick Patterson have a future in the pros--but the program has no sense of direction. Can you tell me what style of play the Cats are supposed to be playing? And if you do know, can you please tell the players, because they obviously have no clue either.
And if that alone wasn't bad enough, Billy Gillispie treats people--including diehard UK fans--as if they don't matter.
Dana O'Neill wrote recently on espn.com that "(Gillispie) is perceived as prickly, aloof and guarded, a lunch pail of bad personality traits in the fishbowl that is Kentucky basketball... He has been brusque with the media, both local and national, and his rude dismissals of ESPN sideline reporter Jeannine Edwards have been a hot topic in Kentucky. He is not one to engage in small talk with anyone, brushing into and out of meeting rooms, locker rooms and breakfast rooms with a purposeful stride."
Tubby Smith was never like that, and although Rick Pitino was a bit leery of UK fans in the beginning, at least he was winning!
Gillispie acts like a jerk--oftentimes for no apparent reason--but can't beat Georgia at home. Nobody likes an asshole, especially one headed to the NIT!
I agree with Kenny Walker and others back in the Bluegrass, who are calling for Kentucky AD Mitch Barnhart to do something drastic: recognize that he made a mistake and fire Billy Gillispie after just two seasons on the job.
Fan morale could be at an all-time low, and player morale seems to be even lower. Both deserve better.
The job at Kentucky is certainly not made for everyone, and it's readily apparent to me that it certainly wasn't made for Billy Gillispie.