What in the world is John Calipari tweeting about?

Ok, being off last week, I admit I haven’t been paying the closest attention. But can anyone explain what exactly John Calipari means by these “Radio Silence” tweets? First thought the Kentucky basketball coach was lashing back at his critics, or at least three of his critics — thus the “triumvirate” comment — over something. But now Cal has tweeted that he’s talking about twitter. And what does this have to do with “radio” silence? Color me confused.

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  1. Chuck S says:

    Just a guess, but I think it’s about whenever something “bad” is published about Kentucky there are a TON of “SEE…SEE…WE TOLD YOU THEY WERE BAD/NASTY/CHEATERS/whatever”, but when something GOOD comes out (like last weeks news about the grade numbers where we tied with Vandy), you hear nothing but crickets chirping (aka Radio Silence for those who don’t camp outside much). If that’s what he meant, he’s pretty much on the mark. Last week had some really good news items about KY, good grades, great Softball, but most of it was ignored by all the nay-sayers.

  2. John Clay says:

    Chuck S., ok, that makes some sense to me. But then why the “triumvirate” use?

  3. cconhhi says:

    Forde, Thamel and Tipton? ;-)

  4. Ryan says:

    “Radio silence is the sound you hear ON TWITTER …”

    “[R]adio silence has nothing to do with media … solely about … TWITTERSPHERE.”

    Media coverage and tweets are separate and this is abundantly clear to me.

  5. John Clay says:

    So I’m to take it that he is upset that Brett McMurphy’s story on Calipari’s charity work wasn’t re-tweeted enough?

  6. John Clay says:

    Or the basketball team’s GPA?

  7. Jordan says:

    The “great triumvirate” is a term Cal has used to refer to the three-headed monster that is Pat Forde, Dana O’Neil, and Pete Thamel – all of whom have gone to great lengths to go after Cal. The usual pattern of events is that one of them writes a ridiculously bias and negative article about Cal and, within minutes, the others will tweet out links to the article, praising it repeatedly. Then, within a matter of days, the others will have written similar articles in response to the first article that offers no new information but keeps the topic in the public eye. Then, of course, the tweeting and linking cycles again.

    Mysteriously, when good – or even neutral articles are written, there is “radio silence.”

  8. Tim says:

    Jordan explained it perfectly.

  9. Jordan says:


    In my opinion, its more than positive UK news “not being retweeted enough” – Its the laughable disparity between the child-like exuberance with which negative stories are propagated and the blatant disregard of any good news or positives that come out of the UK camp. This explains away the concept that negative news at UK is big news because its UK basketball and all news surrounding it is big. Only the negative news appears to be (as far as some are concerned at least).

  10. John Clay says:

    Jordan, my only disagreement with that is that if you asked coaches and fans at other schools they would say the same thing about their situations.

  11. Big Blue Barry says:


    I think Jordan’s first description is dead on. And this isn’t about media coverage in general. It’s specifically about the lack of tweets, re-tweets, and ‘pat on the back’ tweets from Forde, O’Neill and Thamel about any article that paints UK in a positive light, and in this specific case, probably the charity article from CBSSports.com, and possibly the APR numbers.

    To get an idea of what “radio silence” is not, go back and look at the twitter feeds of those 3 individuals on the days/weeks that the Bledsoe transcript story and the Kanter/Turkish GM interview articles that Thamel wrote.

  12. Jordan says:

    I agree that this is often a convenient assumption made by bias fans (a group that I, no doubt, am a member of). However, the acknowledgement of this common concept does preclude the possibility of it actually being true in some instances, especially when it is being assigned to a specific group of writers (like Cal has done in this case). I don’t think Cal (again my opinion) was trying to make a blanket statement about UK’s media coverage. I think he was calling out a specific group of writers whose objectivity would be pretty difficult to defend.

  13. Slade says:

    John, the triumvirate are Pat Forde, Pete Thamel, and Dana O’neil. Everytime one of them publishes a story that involves something negative about Calipari, they are retweeting each other and patting each other on the back. Whenever a story comes out that is positive for calipari, they are silent.
    I agree that most coaches would say the same thing but i also believe there is a grain of truth in what he is saying. Forde especially seems to hold some sort of grudge against Cal and living in Louisville, it’s not hard to imagine why. According to Matt Jones he is no longer allowed to directly cover Cal stories by ESPN for some reason.
    That is why he makes a distinction from just “Media Coverage” and the twitter activity of these three. Everyone would say that negative stories get more attention, but these three actively seek out negative stories about him, in his opinion.

  14. Chris says:

    I think he’s just having fun like he like to rib others, and since any news is good news, tweeting about a silence, has us TALKING ABOUT IT.

  15. Mark Liptak says:

    Jordan has explained the situation accurately and perfectly.

    For example last week after the APR story came out I personally sent an e-mail to Thamel, ESPN (for Forde and O’Neill) and CBS Sportsline (Len Elmore) with a link to the Herald-Leader’s story on it.

    Has ANYBODY heard a peep, ANYTHING from those organizations on this? Didn’t think so.

    Those groups still have yet to publish anything on what Thamel’s reaction was and how he acted at the Derby party when Cousins came up to him.

    I understand Calipari’s frustration.

    If UK does something wrong they are fair game for the media, no complaints about that… but how about at least the semblence of “fairness” in coverage. That’s what it’s supposed to be about in the media right?

    And just FYI, I’ve been in the sports media myself for over 30 years.

    Mark Liptak

  16. Tim says:

    Bias is a noun. Biased is an adjective

  17. Alex says:

    My guess is it was a clumsy effort to backtrack.

  18. Rick says:

    John Clay
    Sure, they would think that! But, who do you think is right, Cal or “coaches and fans at other schools?” It’s almost human nature to think that, but is Cal right, or is Cal wrong? I know what I think. He hit the nail on the head.
    He may not be the only one, but I bet he receives as much scrutiny as any.