The Future of John Calipari with the Kentucky Wildcats

The Kentucky Wildcats have had two first round exits in the past three seasons. That does not bode well for a coach that is on a lifetime contract at one of the blue bloods of college basketball. In this article, we explore what John Calipari's future could be in Lexington.
Oakland v Kentucky
Oakland v Kentucky / Joe Sargent/GettyImages

10 three-pointers and a former division two player in Jack Gohlke did the 3-seed Kentucky Wildcats in last night in their matchup against the 14-seed Oakland Golden Grizzlies.

The Wildcats have been coached by John Calipari since the 2009-2010 season and appeared in the final four three times between 2010 and 2015 and won the 2012 national championship.

In the past four years however, Calipari has had massive struggles that do not meet the expectations of Wildcat fans. And they have a right to be disappointed.

After failing to make the tournament in 2021, the Wildcats were a first round exit in 2022 to the St. Peter’s Peacocks and in the second round in 2022 to the Kansas State Wildcats.

The Wildcats gave Calipari a lifetime contract in 2019 valued at $86 million. Those types of losses do not make that contract seem worth it in any sort. Therefore, many are calling for Calipari to be fired.

If the Wildcats were to fire Calipari before the 2024-2025 season, they would owe him $33 million or $27 million if they waited another year.

While the Wildcats are poised to bring in another prime recruiting class with five stars, early March Madness exits override any level of recruitment excitement, and they should.

Time will tell as the loss is very fresh, but with the Wildcats being a college basketball blue blood, one would think they would have a number of coaches chomping at the bit to take the job in replacement of Calipari.

Names like former LSU Tigers and current McNeese State coach Will Wade, Samford coach Bucky McMillan and Baylor coach Bryce Drew are amongst names that could emerge early to replace Calipari if he is ousted.

It is crazy to think that 10 years ago the SEC was Kentucky and everyone else. Now, the narrative has changed.