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Sean Woods did not like vibe he got from UK players at recent benefit telethon


Sean Woods was one of The Unforgettables at Kentucky and had 21 points — and many thought the game-winning goal — in that infamous 1992 NCAA Tournament loss to Duke when Christian Laettner hit a last-second goal to beat UK.

But during a teleconference Monday leading into Morehead’s game at Kentucky Wednesday night, the first-year Morehead made some comments that he might wish were a bit more forgettable. He was asked about UK freshman Willie Cauley-Stein of Kansas saying before the UK-Duke game that he did not know Laettner.

“You know what, that doesn’t surprise me because kids nowadays are different. When I was growing up I never once saw Wilt Chamberlin play, but I could tell you everything about him. Earl Monroe was way before my time, but I could tell you a lot about him,” said Woods, an Indiana native. “Kids nowadays play too many video games. I’m just being honest with you. They don’t get it. They play basketball, but they don’t know what basketball is.

“They are very fortunate. We live in a microwave society now, and it’s a shame that kids don’t know the history. I walked into a deal the other day, with that telethon at WKYT (to raise money for Hurricane Sandy victims)  — I didn’t like the vibe. I’m just going to be honest with you. With those guys — it’s just totally different now. And it’s not anyone’s fault, it just the way society is now.

“I bet you any type of money, beside the kids that are from the Kentucky that are on UK’s team, couldn’t tell you anything about one player in the history of Kentucky basketball. When I walked through that door, I knew about every player, almost everything history-wise about Kentucky basketball, but these kids don’t. It’s a shame, but that’s just how society is.”

Bad vibe from the UK players helping answer telephones to take calls to donate to charity from an event that ended up raising about $1 million? What did he not like to get such a bad vibe?

“They didn’t seem like Kentucky basketball players to me … and I’ll leave it at that,” Woods said.

Then he didn’t leave it at that.

“I’m a Kentucky basketball player through and through, and there is just a certain aura about you. Like I told you before, these kids these days are just so different. When I was coming up, we were humble. I think because of the success Cal has created, which is not a bad thing — it is a great thing. It just let’s you know where Kentucky basketball is right now,” Woods, who led Mississippi Valley State to last year’s NCAA Tournament, said.

“I am just one of those kids that is a blue-blooded Kentucky guy at heart. There’s just a certain way and a certain look that Kentucky basketball players have, and not have such a sense of entitlement. I think today it is still an honor to wear that uniform. Even though they are coming in one-and-done, what Cal’s created — it’s the only university that it’s happened on a consistent basis. North Carolina’s not doing that all the time, Kansas isn’t doing that all the time and Kentucky is. That’s what sets Kentucky apart from everyone else in the United States.

“I think these kids should be more appreciative coming through here wearing that uniform, knowing that six months that you are going to be an instant millionaire. But still, you went through there and it helped you become who you are during those six, seven or eight months.”

About two hours after the teleconference, Woods posted several messages on Twitter about his comments saying he did not mean to “offend or insult” players or coach John Calipari.

“Simply an observation of today’s youth everywhere. I greatly admire Coach Cal and what he has done for the University of Kentucky and college basketball,” Woods said in his tweets. “I will always be proud to have worn a Kentucky Wildcat uniform and to be the head coach at Morehead State University.”

Permanent link to this article: http://vaughtsviews.com/sean-woods-did-not-like-vibe-he-got-from-uk-players-at-recent-benefit-telethon/


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  1. bryan mc

    Wow!!! Never that come out of Woods mouth. but he’s telling the truth!!!!! GO CATS!!!!

    1. Larry T. Clemons

      BULL Bryan ! How do you compare Laettner or his NBA history, to Wilt Chamberlin or earl Monroe, give me a break…And, Wood’s state’s, ” they don’t seem like Ky Players to me “, HELLO, ” Mc Fly “, they are 18 year olds, who just arrived to Campus…I remember, my 1 st semester, I didn’t feel like a College Student at Kentucky and I’m from Kentucky… Way to self righteous for me. But, I still love ya, Sean.

      1. Larry T. Clemons

        And where was Morehead’s Team of UPPERCLASSMEN raising money for Charities….

      2. bryan mc

        At least there’s a few that agrees with me Larry t. Clemons. There’s always going to be two sides of it!!!!

        1. Larry T Clemons

          So, Bryan, My points are valid, you did not rebut them…all you did was confirm that Others are wrong also…sorry my first comment was so aggressive, I am just upset, that Sean isn’t aware of the fact that these are good young men, who were there to help, not to be hurt or discredited…

  2. Juan4UK


  3. bryan mc

    Opps,meant never thought that would come out of woods mouth.

  4. Juan4UK

    Speechless. I understand the gist of what I’d like to think he meant. But no way did that sound good. I will say that ive not seen anything negative from these teams. Cal has put together. All of em have made me proud. And he is right, there is a diff w kids today and, 20 & 40 yrs ago. Unfair to have strict application of viewpoints and sense of history if a kid isn’t from the UK, IU, or UL upbringing.

    1. Larry T. Clemons

      Right on, Juan…

  5. Juan4UK

    But as they age, they will understand & appreciate What it means . Same with most other things. Its different in Ky and In when it comes to bball.

  6. Kokamo Joe

    The kind of recruit that Calipari brings to Kentucky has been groomed and stroked since elementary school. Few, if any will go to the typical public high school. Most will be enrolled in basketball factories which play other basketball factories coast to coast.
    Calipari’s kids are recruited early by the best college teams in the country. Many have “handlers” who help guide them through their final decision to choose Calipari. These players know that they will be in college for a short period of time and that millions wait them in the NBA. They come from all over the U.S. and many will come from foreign countries. How could they know or understand the UK history? IMO the main thing is to enjoy the rock star love of the fans, come together as a team, demonstrate their skills and watch out behind them because the next bunch is fast approaching. Woods is right. Times are changing and Calipari is riding the crest of that change. Gone are the days when the local Kentucky boy can go to UK, play four years, and contribute. Those kids did know UK history and they had dreamed of wearing the blue and white. But remember…change or no change, UK is still on top.

  7. UK 24 7

    Sean is old school and is just stating how he feels. If more people did just that instead of sticking their head in the sand, the world would be a better place. I think he is dead on on this subject. Thanks Sean. GO CATS!!!

  8. Jim

    Mr Woods should shut his trap and take the appearance money.

    1. UKFAN197TONE

      Nonsense. He didn’t say anything that a million other people don’t already know.

  9. bryan mc

    I really don”t think he meant to be harsh toward coach Cal and the players. He was telling from his heart how he feels the way kids society is now and days.

    1. larryvaught

      Hated I was one that asked him to explain the bad vibe feeling. Never dreamed he would be quite as blunt as he was. And I don’t think he meant it to sound as bad as it came out

      1. Larry T. Clemons

        I think your right, but the comparisons were just plain wrong…Laettner and Wilt, are you kidding me ! Maybe he should have kept his conversations to Polson…

  10. grant

    well he is just saying whats on his heart and mind. i respect sean for not being afraid to say what he believes. ok , now its over , so what. its a different day and age . cal is using the rules that are set in place by adults.

    1. Jim

      I don’t respect him one bit. He is not some washed up player, he coaches a team that will be coming into Rupp. He should be smart enough to choose his words wisely.

  11. Karen Sprinkle

    When I saw the headline, I thought perhaps Sean was talking about the players making faces and such behind Cal. While I appreciate that they are young, I was a bit surprised that some of the coaches didn’t tell them to knock it off and be a bit more serious. I’m not saying that they shouldn’t have had fun while also helping others, but they seemed a bit more childish about it than I expected (and it was actually two of the “older” players that I noticed exhibiting “foolishness” as my grandmother would say than the others.) In no way am I criticizing the players for their generosity in answering the phones, I am just saying I was a bit surprised with the behavior of some of them.

    As for Sean’s explanation, he is certainly entitled to his opinion. I’m not sure he’s knocking any of our guys for their attitudes as much as talking about today’s society. As Cal has said multiple times, recruits nowadays only seem to remember about 3 years, not things that happened when they were young or before they were born. As pointed out above, kids are coming to UK from all over the country, and few, if any, were fans of the program for years upon years. However, the guys in the program seem to grow to appreciate the history of the program and the “crazy” fans, and seem to appreciate it even more after they’ve gone on to less blue pastures (no matter how long they’re here).

    1. Larry T. Clemons

      ” Grow to Appreciate “, ” Learn To Love “,your right Karen. People should give these young men a break…they have been in Boot Camp….Coach told them to Have fun with this. ” laugh, joke with the Fans and get money for this Great Cause “…

  12. King Ghidora

    I hate to tell you Sean but players have gone into UK not knowing the history of the school since I first started watching the Cats and that has been a long while. Let’s talk about Tom Payne. Heck let’s talk about Pat Riley who came to UK from Schenectady, NY. I would guess that Pat didn’t show up knowing everything about UK history and there was a lot less of it back then. Sure he probably knew the players on the championship teams but did he know the guys from the days before the NCAA tourney? Anyone think he knew who the guys were that won the Helm’s trophy in 1933? That was the national championship back then. That was just about 30 years before Riley. That’s not much farther back than WCS would have to go to know about Laettner.

    I think Woods is just ticked that the players didn’t know about the shot he made before Laettner made his shot. If they don’t know one of those players they probably don’t know the other. Maybe Woods did know the UK history when he came to town but lots of his fellow players sure didn’t. I just don’t think LeRon Ellis and Chris Mills knew the history of UK that well when they came to town. They were both California guys. Why would they know about Beard and Ramsey etc.? Yes there was a bunch of Ky kids on the roster when Sean came to Lexington. I’m sure Feldhaus knew something of the history since his dad played there. Pelphrey was a dyed in the wool UK fan. Mike Scott certainly knew something of UK. And Farmer undoubtedly knew a lot about the BBN. But Johnathan Davis, Eric Manuel, and Derrick Miller were questionable about their UK knowledge IMO. They didn’t grow up in the region so why would they know these things? How could they know them in fact? It’s not like they could look it up on the net.

  13. Larry T. Clemons

    Agian, King’s Knowledge and Insight, bring’s the reality to Sean Wood’s statements…those statements were just plain wrong…And King G., How did you like his comparison of Laettner to Wilt Chamberlin…and/or Earl Monroe. I still don’t remember Laettners contributions to the NBA GAME….

    1. Kokamo Joe

      Wood’s statements wrong? I don’t think so. So what if he is right? How could these players comming from their backgrounds be any thing but a bit self centered and concerned on basketball after UK? Can a rich kid who was born with a silver spoon in his mouth understand what makes the average kid tick? These players may not be born rich, but they are rich in another way….talent….experience….fame….. Before they committed to UK they were chased by coaches like a bunch of hound dogs fighting over a piece of meat. Yes, Woods was right. But again…so what? Times are different. Our kids did not grow up shooting baskets in the back yard and dreaming about playing for UK. It is Calipari now. Calipari getting them to the next level. Who could blame them? And UK wins. Smile, accept the truth and be glad that we have the man.

    2. UKFAN197TONE

      He wasn’t comparing their STATS or NBA careers. You totally missed his point. Sean was talking about era’s of basketball. He knew of the older guys and he figured that WCS would know of CL and “the shot”. It’s not like it’s not talked about every year during the NCAA Tournament at nausea. He wasn’t saying that CL was better than Wilt or Earl.

      1. Larry T Clemons

        You seem to miss the point, actually….Sean said, ” When I was growing up I never met Wilt Chamberlin, but I knew about him “…implying that they should know about Laettner…read the whole story, Woods said it, not me…I would also question, how much knowledge of Wilt’s College days, Woods knew, when Woods was 18….

  14. JackG

    Just as I applauded Coach Cal for speaking his mind to Andy Katz about the Duke Blue Floppers, I also applaude Coach Woods for his candor in speaking his mind. I am 55 year follower of UK in both basketball and football. I have heard and seen a lot. I am glad we have gotten to a point when we can say what we think and not hide how we feel. We are in a different era. I grew up in the 50’s and 60’s and had very good family values and morals. With that said, I am glad we have moved on and can say what we feel, as long as we do not hurt people. I think Coach Woods was just stating how things used to be compared to today. I must admit there are times when I wish things were like they used to be. WeAreUK!!!!!

  15. TheProfessor

    There is a big part of me that believes it is the responsibility of the coach and the basketball support staff to teach all UK players entering the program about the UK basketball traditions and history. If they do not know all of the details when they arrive, I believe they ought to know most of the details before they leave, and be taught that they have an enduring responsibility to the program to treasure its history, be a part of its history, and help promote it to subsequent generations of UK players.

    1. Kokmo Joe

      But the history of UK basketball does not matter. Why should these kids know about Forest Sale, Ralph Beard, Melvin Turpin, Leroy Byrd, or Anthony Epps? Big Blue history is for the fans. Today’s players are here for one thing. Calipari gets them to the NBA early. Read their quotes. Some of us are deluded into thinking that it is UK that is bringing them to Lexington. They did not come before Calipari. These kids are here to win, get the attention of the scouts and move on. It is time for us to recognize the truth and look with pride at what Calipari is doing. He is putting UK on the map. He is making history, history that we can be proud of, but aside for the obvious pull of tomorrow’s super stars, a history that is designed for the fan base to be proud of. Tomorrow’s recruits will be looking forward to their future, not to UK’s past.

    2. King Ghidora

      I think you’re right here Prof.. The thing is I think Cal has done a better job of teaching his recruits about the BBN traditions and history than any coach the team has had in quite a while. Certain coaches tended to think UK history started with them IMO (ahem Pitino, Smith).

      It’s not so much that I think Sean is wrong about the current players being so involved in cyber games instead of learning of the great traditions of UK. I just think there’s always been a good bit of the thinking that history started just in my life. Half the whole baby boom generation seems to think there was no history before JFK and the Beatles and the counter culture. I really think Sean doesn’t want people to forget what he did in that Duke game. And like Clemons said, it isn’t like Laettner was on par with the true greats of the game despite what certain tv announcers would have us think. Monroe and Chamberlain were fantastic players compared to Christian. I’d guess that more of today’s young players know who those guys are than Laettner. If not they certainly should. I see ignorant Duke fans claiming that he was among the very best that ever played the game and it’s all I can do to keep from busting a gut laughing. The thing is that ESPN and CBS have tried to make it seem like he was a true great and that I don’t find funny at all. They just like the idea of cashing in the east coast market in an area under served by the NBA. Charlotte has never caught on to cash in on a rich basketball market and the networks keep hoping they can sell the idea that Tobacco Road is the center of the college basketball world. It just looks to me like the I-65 and I-64 area is the true capital of that realm. I guess it irks me more to see ignorant fans make those wild claims than it does to see players who are uninformed about the past of their program. I don’t like the sheer propaganda effort of those networks to push those east coast teams to the top of college basketball. That just stinks. Every time I hear an announcer go on about Duke when they’re calling a game that involves the SEC I just want to throttle the little twit that’s doing it. Heck even K doesn’t like that. He knows the truth that the propaganda just makes some people really dislike his team.

  16. Ira

    here is one…I could care less. At least it wasn’t PC.

    1. Jim

      That is the simple point that any Woods apologist fails to comprehend. That should have been a private matter between him and Calipari. The reason he dropped it on the media was to give himself some press. You can look at it from any angle you want, but plain and simple, it was to put Mr. Woods name out there. He succeeded. Now, they should take that stupid banner down of those guys who didn’t win a championship and don’ have any “real” stats to back up being put in the rafters. That was another bone head decision from CM Newton.

      1. larryvaught

        Sean was just answering questions in the blunt, direct manner that he always does

        1. Jim

          The fan base should not give him a pass. He should know how magnified his comments would be in the press, being a former player and bringing in a team to play in Rupp. I, personally, think he should have known better. There is nothing wrong with having an opinion. But, there is always the proper time and place for everything.
          His public comments about the current players puts him in a negative light, not the players, UK, or the fans.

        2. Larry T Clemons

          Larry, I think he said it to try and get these young men rattled, for the Game…then, Wood’s states he’s going to get aggressive with Kentucky…I think he’s in for a big wake up call. Actions will speak louder than, his words.

  17. bugcat

    lost all respect for Woods after that. he must be a jerk. much like his former coach.

    1. Kokmo Joe

      So you are ready to trash a former four year player at UK who is part of this history that we all love so much. Woods simply said what he believed to be the truth. That makes him a jerk? You go on to call a former coach who commanded one of the most storied chapter in UK history a jerk? Talk about loyalty!

    2. Kokamo Joe

      Both Woods and his former coach are jerks? Woods a four year player and a hall of famer? Pitino who won a national championship and played in three final fours? People talk about the current crop of UK players needing to know UK history. And here you are trashing it. Let’s look at what Woods said: (1) Today’s UK players have a sense of entitlement. How could they not feel that way? They are very good. They have been recruited by many and chose the best route to millions of dollars. They are treated like rock stars even before they step on the court. Want an example? Looks at the recent Wiggins experience. UK fans dressed in blue flooded his high school game shouting “Go Big Blue” over and over again. When Wiggins enrolls next year explain how he could not have a sense of entitlement. The kid and our present players are human. (2) Today’s UK players don’t understand what it means to be a UK player. Of course they don’t. How could they? It is about the kids is it not? UK’s teams in the past have always had kids from small towns who dreamed of being a Cat and actually were a major part of the team…players like Anthony Epps, Dwane Casey, Jim Lemaster to name a few. They grew up knowing UK basketball and THEIR ULTIMATE GOAL WAS TO BE A CAT AND NOT TO STAY A FEW MONTHS AND THEN GO ON TO MAKE MILLIONS AS A PRO. Woods was right on both issues BUT times change. Those days are gone. It is time to embrace the future and realize that Calipari is on the cusp and that he is riding it to greatness. Go Cats!

  18. LindaS

    I think Larry V last year said I would be a good candidate to teach our young men about the history and tradition of Kentucky. They would know who Bob Burrows was even though I never saw him play. They would know what it was like to stand in line in front of Memorial and wait for tickets for the student section in the freezing rain and why we waited. They would know what it was like to see Big Dan go against Pistol Pete. They would know how it felt when we lost the 1966 championship. They would know the man in the brown suit. They would understand how fortunate they are to be playing Varsity and not starting out playing JV. Kyle, Pratt, Casey, Riley, Dampier, Connelly, Mash and the rest would not be just names and pictures and in some cases, old men with grey hair and a little around the middle. They would know how special a player Louie Dampier was and what it meant for him and Kyle to come to Kentucky. They WOULD KNOW ABOUT THE SHOT! They would understand the passion of playing against that ‘other’ school and why we feel that passion. They would understand why we can’t stand puke or NC. I would tell them about the pretenders and wannabe’s. They would know our ups and downs, our tears and cheers. 2000+ wins would be indelibly etched into their brains. They would understand the Miracle in Louisiana. I would tell them why they should feel very lucky to wear the blue and white and how, no matter how many years they run up and down Rupp Arena they will be loved and honored their whole lives in the Commonwealth of Kentucky. They will know why everyone was upset that Joe B was not in the Hall of Fame sooner. They will know about the young men who came to campus after serving our country during WWII and winning championships and Olympic Gold Medals. What I don’t know, I will learn, I will pick brains and those young men will know why, when and how and they will forever love the program and UNDERSTAND. They would truly realize how much all this means to the Tradition and History of the greatest basketball program in the Nation. The one that other schools strive to be and beat. They will understand even better the fans of the BBN. They will know why I say Livin’ Blue & Lovin’ It! Sean had a right to say what he did, everyone is entitled to their opinion and in some things he said were true. However, he should not have said them before his team meets UK on the floor of Rupp Arena. GO CATS!

  19. LindaS

    Previous post was not written by evil twin sister, but by Me, Linda Sinclair! I just got a dog. I am going to either name her Callie after coach or Ali after my hero. Which one should it be?

  20. Larry T Clemons

    ” Cali “…

    1. LindaS

      Gonna be Cali, when I called to check on her I asked has Cali was doing!

      1. Larry T Clemons

        Linda, I’m a huge Cassius Clay/Ali Fan….That man molded my life, growing up in Louisvlle, I’ve been blessed to Love Ali…I have a huge Ali Collection, Autographs, fight Posters, Glove, Photos, etc… CALi & cALI…will bring you years of Joy.

        1. LindaS

          Larry T Clemons, he is my hero. I have a letter from him that was written to me. He stood up for what he believe in, he was 4 months shy of being to old to be drafted, he was the only man in the draft from Louisville that day, he was a Muslim many years before they tried to draft him. He lived by his words and he still does. My dad was a veteran of WWII. He delivered milk to Ali and his family before he changed his name. My dad never said one bad word about him for refusing to go to war. I think Ali is one of the reasons I treat people the way I do. He has been an example to me for most of my life. Yep, the Calipair and Ali combined like you suggested! My dad was a veteran of WWII. He delivered milk to Ali and his family before he changed his name. My dad never said one bad word about him for refusing to go to war. I’m from Lexington West also. Born and bred here. (AKA louavull!)

  21. BigCat

    I played with Sean Woods a few times in pickup games 1994-95, and let me tell you that his attitude was horrible. He has nothing to talk about with these kids, as he was 4-5 years older than they are, and he was very immature.

    1. BigCat

      Woods’ shoving of his point guard reiterates my point on his personal lack of maturity/self control. I hope the AD finds this as unacceptable, and brings disciplinary action.

      1. Karen Sprinkle

        BigCat, WKYT is reporting that Morehead State is investigating not only his actions at yesterday’s game, but also during a loss to Maryland. MSU will hold a press conference Friday.

        1. Larry T Clemons

          It was not just the pushing that concerned me, it was his hate and humiliation that he exhibited on his Player and the Stalking after, Coach Woods made his point clear.

  22. lunchbox

    i agree with sean,but i admit that the championship kinda blocked those feelins out…im not one of the ppl that drinks the blue aid an cant see strait.theres been sum things cals said an done that rubbed me the wrong way but over all i think hes done a good job an hes good 4 uk. like 2 see our boys get a lil playin time

  23. lunchbox

    i no ppl get mad but if ur dream is to play ball ud think u would hav heared of the greates college game in history..plus ur at that school…if u ever watch a final 4 they run it over an over

    1. Larry T Clemons

      He commented on and called out, ” WCS “, who was an All-State Football Guy…please, people encompass your own knowledge, to make accurate, valid remarks…Don’t do what Sean Woods did, ” speak without thinking “…Every individual is different, I’d give Willie a pass ,on that bit of College Basketball knowledge. But, Sean, I believe if they would have ask him who Wilt Chamberlin was, WCS would have known, sorry he didn’t know You or Laettner.

  24. bryan mc

    I”M afraid Sean woods will pay dearly for the remarks tomorrow nite!!!! GO CATS!!!

  25. LindaS

    I give Ky at least a 50+ pt win over them.

  26. Jonathan Pierce

    This guy is spot on; Morehead and wherever else he goes will be successful if he gets the necessary support from weak administrations…its just too bad that a guy comes out and calls it like he sees it, and people still defend spoiled kids, many of which have no appreciation for the opportunity they have; discipline is weak these days, appreciation for history is weak, compassion is weak, basic third grade consideration for your fellow man is weak..there’s no sense of values, morals, religion..its all dying in the name of being ‘correct in the views of society'; people wonder why the country is going to hell, and this is why…there are no dads, only coaches, teachers, etc..then you take they power to discipline out of their hands…and what do you get? food stamps and welfare…that is what that kid woods yelled at is up against…accept discipline and value the direction, or be angry and go your own way..i guarantee him going his own way will end soon…

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