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Calipari wants players to “express” themselves in right way for them and the team


Sophomore Willie Cauley-Stein and freshman Marcus Lee have bonded because they readily admit they each have unique personalities.

Kentucky coach John Calipari says he has “seen or heard or coached just about any of that” during his coaching career.

“What you have is these kids all need us in different ways.  They’re not cookie cutters.  Everyone’s different.  I want every kid to express himself as long as it’s not hurting his teammates or hurting himself or his family.  My job is to help protect them not only against others outside but also themselves,” Calipari said. “But we’re not against Facebook, Twitter, all that stuff because, I hate to tell you, all you old people in here, my son is not watching TV when he gets home.  What’s he looking at?  The computer.  I know, if you’re my age, 46 or 47 … you don’t want to hear that, but that’s the fact.

“So to get these guys to understand that you can use this stuff, if you do it in a positive way and that you’re — everything you put out there is out there for the rest of your life.  And if I guy doesn’t do it, we’ll counsel him and talk to him.  We’ve got a great group of people here that watch everything they send out.  There’s nothing they put out that’s not seen.

“And we train them, just so you understand.  They get training in social media.  We bring people in to train them.  They show them some of the stuff they put in, and the whole team cracks up.  I can’t — why would you —and we talk to them about it.  I think, again, if it you’re trying to prepare these young people for the rest of their lives, that’s all part of it.”

But are the two players that unique?

“Willie is different than Marcus Lee, who’s different than Derek Willis.  I’m trying to get those guys to speak a little bit, to talk, come out.  Your personality’s in there, come on, throw it, let us see it,” Calipari said. “The thing that we’re working on right now is failing fast.  Fail fast.  In other words, try things, go, attack, so I can correct and you can figure out what’s not going to work and work.  We don’t have seven months.  We’ve got a brand new team.  Fail fast so we can work and move on, and they’ve been doing a pretty good job of that.”

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