University of Kentucky president Lee Todd declined to comment on the impending penalties the NCAA will impose on the University of Memphis basketball program.
“The president is not going to talk about the Memphis case,” UK spokesman Tom Harris said on Thursday morning. “He thinks it’s not a University of Kentucky issue.”
That’s true in the strictest sense. However, UK hired the coach Memphis had at the time of the major infractions, John Calipari. And Todd has made strong statements of his desire for UK to follow the rules.
When the allegations of rule violations first became public, UK distanced itself from the case by saying it was a matter for Memphis. UK officials, including Todd, said that Calipari had told them of the allegations during the interview process.
UK officials also noted that the NCAA did not name Calipari in its allegations.
It’s widely reported that the NCAA will vacate Memphis’ appearance in the 2008 Final Four and strip the program of its record 38 victories in the 2007-08 season.
If true, Calipari will have directed two teams to the Final Four and had both appearances vacated because of rules violations. His 1995-96 Massachusetts team had to vacate an appearance to the 1996 Final Four when star big man Marcus Camby acknowledged receiving money from an agent.