College Basketball

Samford’s coach on this year’s Kentucky team: “Worst UK team ever”

Kentucky basketball has had its success under John Calipari, reaching the Elite 8, Final Four and winning a National Championship in his three seasons as head coach. The 2012-’13 Kentucky team, however, is not playing up to the level of Calipari’s previous Kentucky teams.

The Wildcats are currently unranked after losing three games (Duke, Notre Dame and Baylor). A consensus top 5 preseason team, Kentucky was clearly over-hyped from the get-go, having not had a single returning starter from last season’s National Championship team.

Tuesday night’s match-up with Samford was not supposed to be a tough contest, which is wasn’t, with Kentucky winning by 32 points. It was what Bennie Seltzer, Samford’s first year head coach said during the first half about Kentucky, that will provide the talking points from the game.

Even though Seltzer was using this for motivational reasons, saying this year’s team is the worst in Kentucky history is an overstatement. Yes, they’re not playing like a cohesive group of five-star recruits yet, but Kentucky basketball under previous coach Billy Gillispie wasn’t anything to write home about.  Was Seltzer referring to the three previous Calipari led teams? If so, then he has a case.

After the game, Seltzer tried to clarify what he meant by telling reporters“I said they’re not that good. I can’t remember what else I said. It was all motivating. Letting these guys know, ‘Yeah, they’re human’ and there’s no need to go out there and be afraid.”

Seltzer also added that he needed to be careful about what he said with all the ears around him, especially playing at Kentucky.

Kentucky forward Willie Cauley-Stein, who finished the game with a double-double, responded to the comments saying, “It’s like a slap in the face, because we’re putting in the work.” Calipari laughed at Seltzer’s comments following the game as seen below.

Previously: Morehead State coach tears into one of his player in Rupp Arena

Photo: Andy Lyons/Getty Images

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View Comments (12)


  1. Dave / NM

    December 5, 2012 at

    They’re not That bad, but they’re not that good either

  2. Ray

    December 5, 2012 at

    Coach Selzter was only motivating his players as any coach would do in sight of the reputation and past history of Kentucy b/b teams carries. I give him credit for not being “afraid” to use hat terminology as a vehicle to motivate his players.

  3. michael

    December 5, 2012 at

    well,lets all admit,there not all together yet,but wait till tournament time……the buds will blossom,,the true blue will come out…and their jersey names will mean something special to all of them…..the reason they are there……tradition!

  4. Sean Fitzgerald

    December 5, 2012 at

    Coach Selzter has a right to say whatever he wants. This isn’t North Korea. Leave it alone and stop deconstructing every bit of life’s minutiae.

  5. william mccord

    December 5, 2012 at


  6. Nel

    December 5, 2012 at

    As a UK fan I would have to agree with him and don’t see anything wrong with what he said–I doubt he meant any harm. The players will get better–we’re not worried, because we are still enjoying the revelry of being NCAA champions.

  7. Dale Sine

    December 5, 2012 at

    I am a 40 year UK fan. I have no problem with what Coach Seltzer said to his team at half time. First of all, coaches say many things to their players at half time to encourage them to play better. Those half time talks should not be made public. Secondly, this years Cats are not that great, right now. Coach Cal will get them to where they need to be by the time the SEC season starts. And, UK beat Coach Seltzers team by 32 points, so I guess it is good this is the worst UK team ever, otherwise Samford would have lost by 100 points!

  8. Kevin Alsup

    December 5, 2012 at

    He was the assistant coach at IU last year. What kind if comments would you expect from him.

    • Mark Humphreys

      December 6, 2012 at

      Sometimes the truth hurts !!!

  9. Cookie

    December 6, 2012 at

    I’m a huge UK fan and the Samford coach wasn’t that far off! We are bad right now, but we won’t stay that way! Also, what coach would tell his team, “This is UK and they will be the best team you face all year, so be scared and play timid and don’t worry about competing because it won’t matter. They will kill us. Just take your lumps and we’ll collect our paycheck and get outta here!” The Samford coach was trying to put his team at ease and encourage them to give it their best shot, and they did just that.

  10. mfields

    December 6, 2012 at

    no matter what i think coach cal is the best and we will see come march

  11. TEXIZZ

    December 6, 2012 at

    Mr. Seltzer has just set the tone for his style of coaching. His two seconds of fame are up before they even start. Coaches like him lead their teams into slaughter houses just for the money the school gets. He and his team just got embarrassed by the worst Kentucky team in history! He is not a very bright man. Maybe that is why he is at a no name school.

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