NY Times article on Dwane Casey Jack mentioned
In 1988, Casey’s promising college coaching career was derailed when he was implicated in a recruiting scandal. The N.C.A.A. said that Casey had sent a recruit $1,000 in an express-mail envelope that mysteriously opened.
Sutton resigned. Then Casey resigned, too, and the N.C.A.A. issued an order effectively barring him from college coaching for five years. Casey has always maintained his innocence and filed a $7 million lawsuit against the express-mail company and its employees. Casey settled the lawsuit, and the N.C.A.A. rescinded the show-cause order that kept him from coaching, but he has never come close to returning to the college ranks.
Sutton bounced back quickly. After sitting out a season, he was hired at Oklahoma State, where he coached more than 500 games with great success.
Casey’s experience mirrors that of numerous assistants at other programs that got in trouble. When Louisville was placed on probation in the 1990s, Coach Denny Crum was unscathed, but two assistants resigned. Last year at Connecticut, two members of the staff were fired for their roles in a recruiting scandal; Coach Jim Calhoun received a three-game suspension.
“The N.B.A. is a business. It’s about winning games and coaching and teaching basketball.”
It’s his business, too, with a college job being unlikely even though he is not formally barred. Yet Casey has consistently taken the high road when discussing his career, especially what happened at Kentucky two decades ago.
“When I look back on the situation at Kentucky, it is in the rearview mirror; life goes on,” he said. “Let bygones be bygones. I don’t live my life every day hoping and wishing and thinking about what would have, could have or should have happened back in Kentucky.”
He added: “I’m perfectly happy in the N.B.A. and I’m happy in Toronto. I love the organization.”
Nevertheless, Casey should have the option to return to college. At age 54, he would have an abundance of life lessons to teach.
“America’s the land that loves opportunities for redemption,” Mark Emmert, the N.C.A.A. president said, during a phone interview. “When someone has been involved in an infraction and served out their show-cause period of time, if a university is interested in them, I think they ought to have every opportunity.”
Casey acknowledged that he would like to have the option of coaching in college, but added: “I don’t sit around and think about it. First of all, I don’t have time to. Trying to win games in the N.B.A. is time-consuming.”
The high road has taken Casey to a rich N.B.A. coaching career: a championship ring and now a job handling the reins for a tough young team.
Still, he remains loyal to his old team. He cheers for the Kentucky tradition. And he remembers what Hall used to tell the players. It’s a sentiment that applies equally to assistants who come and go.
“He said that the program would always continue, no matter who’s coaching and who’s playing,” Casey said. “He used to say, ‘I’m just the keeper of the program and you guys are just here, going through it right now, but the program is bigger than all of us.’ ”
||03-26-2012 09:51 PM
tough young team ... when was the last time these words applied to a raptors team ...
3 months ago that would have been something of a cruel joke :)
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