Terrence Jones Signs Financial Aid Agreement with Kentucky in 11th Hour Fashion
And so the story of Terrence Jones finally resolves itself. I have received a number of accounts from different parties that attempt to explain what happened. Why did Jones, his mom and another friend from Portland OR visit UW last Tuesday, if he wasn’t going to sign with Washington? Did they travel up I-5 just to tell Lorenzo Romar that he was going to sign with John Calipari? What about Terrence’s dad Kevin Jones or “KJ” as Jones referred to him at his now infamous announcement ceremony at Jefferson High School on April 30th?
We are going to be discussing all of these issues on Husky Digest in greater detail, but I will go over a number of things here.
Here is what is out there on this story. Jones signed a financial aid agreement with Kentucky and said that he was 95% certain, according to the Oregonian that he would play for Calipari. The only reason that he would not according to the piece by Nick Daschel would be if “Coach Cal” left Kentucky.
“Jones indicated that he is ’95 percent certain’ he’ll stick with the Wildcats, saying Coach John Calipari leaving the school is the only reason he would back out.”
Unlike a national letter of intent the agreement obligates Jones to nothing, but obligates Kentucky to provide everything that a basketball scholarship would to someone who did sign an LOI. Like Brandon Knight, who signed the same agreement, Jones is likely in my opinion wanting to allow an out if something happens that they doesn’t like or if some opportunity comes up that appeals to them more.
Kentucky star player John Wall told the AP that he believes that Calipari will stay, contrary to numerous reports that point out that he has been testing the waters in the NBA job market, including one direct eye witness report by a regular source of ours.
Maybe Calipari will stay in Lexington when all is said and done, but in my opinion the possibility of scandal, much like what happened at UMass and Memphis could also lead “Coach Cal” to seek the golden parachute of the NBA and his cadre of accomplices William “Worldwide Wes” and Wesley’s close associate and supporter of Calipari’s regime at Kentucky, Lebron James.
It may be that the flirtation with the NBA and the hard to turn down package deal of Lebron in tow is more of a back-up plan for possible problems in keeping the “Coach Cal” show going in Kentucky or plan A with Lexington to fall back on, but either way it makes sense for Jones and Knight to proceed with caution. Why would they want to walk into this fire pit in the 1st place? I’ll be happy to discuss my feelings on that and share more accounts of those close to the situation at Husky Digest.
Romar reacted to the news gracefully, as one would expect that he would. He stated clearly that he was done with the class of 2010 for now when he spoke to Percy Allen of the Seattle Times on Friday.
“We’re done. You never know three weeks from now someone says hey I’m interested in coming out of nowhere. That’s something that you didn’t expect. There’s no one that we see right now that would allow us to continue.”
Romar also told Allen that he had no ill will towards John Calipari. That is an amazing statement to me.
Romar did tell Softy at KJR-AM that when asked about if he would reconsider Jones, should things not work out he stated that they are moving on.
Garry Parrish of CBS Sportsline was critical of Jones, who he felt has brought this situation upon himself by manipulating the media and social networking sites.
Steve Kelley of the Seattle Times pointed out the dishonesty of the April 30th announcement presser and placed the blame squarely on Jones himself.
“Yo, Terrence! If you make a statement at a news conference, you’re supposed to honor it. There’s a responsibility that come with calling a news conference. It isn’t some whimsical event. It’s serious business.”
The Oregonian focused the blame more at the feet of Calipari and his “Cadre”.
“Take a stroll around Calipari’s programs and you’ll find a pack of men with unknown motives hanging around. Agents, hangers-on, sycophants, and of course, the infamous and powerful talent broker — William “Worldwide Wes” Wesley — who steers players into Calipari’s arms. Look at Calipari’s coaching resume and you find academic fraud, including NCAA sanctions over a cooked-up entrance examination. Calipari had to throw out his NCAA Final Four appearance at the University of Massachusetts when it was learned that one of his players (Marcus Camby) took money from an agent. The same thing happened at Memphis after the NCAA investigated Rose’s recruitment and his SAT test.”
Andy Katz of ESPN applauded Calipari stating essentially that it is all “Coach Cal’s” abilities and wonderful contacts.
“He has had the Midas touch in recruiting since he arrived in Lexington 13 months ago, putting together what will likely be the No. 1 class in the country for the second consecutive spring. His connections haven’t failed him, nor has his ability to convince high-level players that playing at Kentucky is the right choice.”
This is Pollyanna speaking in my opinion. Calipari, “Wes” and the rest of their henchmen are not to be lauded and admired. They, along with others, have dragged college basketball down while its popularity and box office receipts have moved up steadily. Conventional reasoning is that the two are related. If you want the answer to the mystery, follow the money. I question this as being good; in fact I believe that this is very bad. The game gets more corrupt as the money gets bigger.
The game’s integrity will suffer. All you need to do is look at boxing or the steroid scandal in baseball to see the result of corrupt forces gaining more and more power and those whose jobs it is to uphold rules and order becoming a kangaroo court. The game and its laurels like the Final Four, conference championships, the NCAA Tournament and the great legacy of those that built the sport will be held in less and less an inspiring light as the corrupt become bolder and those that oppose them less able..
Who is this “Worldwide Wes” and what did he do in regards to Calipari’s effort to land Jones?
Ted Williams Head, examines Wesley’s role in the Lebron James story and talked about what his role is in the game.
I believe that Wesley and others are experts in corruption that pray upon the game of basketball more than they advance it. Their tools are of the cloak and dagger variety and their motives are wealth and power. What happens to them and their accomplices, Calipari and other coaches who deal in their domain, clearly defines the future of the game in my opinion. I believe that if these forces are not turned back and order and rules are not restored, the game may be in great jeopardy.
Isaiah Thomas threw down the gauntlet between Washington and Kentucky it appeared when he spoke on his twitter page.
“I hope we play KENTUCKY nxt yr n the Maui classic. All I gotta say is ITS BOUT TO GO DOWN. A BARK over a meow ne day.”
Meanwhile a player that originally signed with Washington the year that Jon Brockman did, Roburt Sallie, has decided to leave Memphis going into his senior year. What is ironic about this is that Sallie came to Memphis under Calipari.
Roburt really wanted to play for Washington, but he had too many academic hurdles at the time. He went to prep school for what would have been his freshman year at Washington. After that he tried to get into Washington and was unsuccessful in what would have been the same class as Spencer Hawes, Pondexter, etc. After committing to Nebraska and being unable to get in, he ended up at San Francisco CC, the alma mater of O.J. Simpson in the mid-sixties.
After getting his grades in order that year, Sallie was heavily recruited for the class that would have been Venoy Overton’s freshman year. After signing with none other than “Coach Cal” at Memphis, he played for what were his sophomore and junior seasons at Memphis, one with Calipari and one with Josh Pastner, the former Calipari assistant that has also had great success on the recruiting trail. At 25 years old Roburt has received his degree from Memphis and wishes, much like Joe Wolfinger at Washington last year to finish his career off elsewhere.
If a player has already graduated they are able to transfer for their senior year without having to sit out a year. Roburt is a capable shooter, one may even say outstanding. His career 3-point percentage at Memphis is 44% on 272 attempts. Sallie is a veteran player that seems destined for a pro career, likely overseas or in the NBDL would he attempt it this year. If he played another year of ball at Washington, he could play his way into a better pro career. I like Roburt and have talked to him on a number of occasions.
I feel that he would not hurt Washington if he were to take the spot that is currently open, in fact having a player with that ability and experience would only enhance the Dawgs chances in the Pac-10 and beyond. It would also be a dream comes true for a kid that in 2005 was dying to be a Dawg.