John Calipari hasn’t held an official position in the NBA since the turn of the century, but his fingerprints are all over the league as we know it. Coach Cal has only one NCAA title to his name, but in just nine seasons in Lexington, he’s turned the University of Kentucky into an assembly line for professional players—both in the NBA and in leagues across the globe. This week, we’re exploring Kentucky’s and Calipari’s impact on the basketball world, and whether or not his one-and-done blueprint has staying power at both the college and pro levels. Welcome to the Kentucky Basketball Association.
That was easier than we thought.
Anthony Davis is the champion of the Big Bracket Nation, and thus the best basketball player ever produced by John Calipari, and, frankly, it wasn’t all that close. Davis, the top seed in the field, won his first- and second-round matchups with 99 percent of the vote in each. He bested Marcus Camby and John Wall in rounds 3 and 4 with more than 90 percent of the vote in each, and then dispatched DeMarcus Cousins, his Pelicans teammate, in Friday’s final with 89 percent of the vote.
Davis had probably one of the greatest single-season runs in college basketball history, he will likely win at least one NBA Most Valuable Player award in his career, and now he can claim this prestigious theoretical title.
This is truly his one shining moment, but we’ll leave this here for good measure: