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THE OLD MASTER OUTFOXED THEM
Jeremiah Tax
March 31, 1958
Even as he brilliantly captured the national basketball title, Coach Rupp spurned a popularity which should be his
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March 31, 1958

The Old Master Outfoxed Them

Even as he brilliantly captured the national basketball title, Coach Rupp spurned a popularity which should be his

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In the second half, Castellani tried to fend off the inevitable by putting his team in a zone defense. He had four men out front, running furiously to cover five Kentuckians and kept Baylor under the basket where, at least, he was of value in rebounding. But there always had to be a free Kentucky player outside and, whether it was the sharpshooting Johnny Cox in a corner or the excellent jump-shooting Vernon Hatton near the top of the key, he scored.

It must be said for Baylor that, handicapped as he was by fouls and by a painful rib injury, he still scored 25 points in streaks of brilliant offensive play, and passed off daringly and well to his teammates. But Kentucky won 84-72.

Adolph Rupp had his fourth NCAA title. The man dedicated to winning as the only reason for playing or coaching had his victory. Rupp deserved this as no other coach ever deserved a victory.

But it must be reported, unhappily, that among many of his peers, this was not a popular victory (SI, Dec. 16). Adolph Rupp has made it clear often enough: "I am not engaged in a popularity contest. I want to win basketball games." He has followed this principle with public displays of tactlessness toward fellow coaches, thoughtless immodesty and the poor losing spirit that must seek an excuse for defeat. His attitude has antagonized many another coach, many a player, many a mere spectator over the years. It is to be hoped that after this particular victory—after honors to sate any man—Adolph Rupp will at last strive for that real esteem, as a man and leader of young men, for which he has hungered all along without daring to admit it to himself.

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