Coach John Calipari tries to start every morning in church. That's right the game's biggest name in coaching who just won a national championship has a prayer list. I asked him why going to church is so important to him. His answer was simple. "I am a sinner, and sinners need forgiveness."
He laughed, but he was serious. This grandson of immigrants who worked in the coal mines feels blessed to be in the position he's in, and praying for others is one way he gives back. During our exclusive, hour long interview, Coach Calipari talked about the fish bowl he lives in, and how he finds time time for his teenage son Brad. I noted that Brad was with the team during the public shoot around in New Orleans, and later at the White House after they won the national championship. Coach says he finds any opportunity he can to include his son because his job has stolen so much time away from family. He also laughed about Brad being the only one allowed to bounce a basketball during a practice while his dad is talking.
"No one else is allowed to do that." Coach Cal says Brad is working hard to be a good player, and Cal says the game teaches his son commitment.
Coach Cal also finds time to explore business and charitable ideas. Many people know he's invested in the popular Orange Leaf Yogurt shops. He has a college background in business and marketing, and says he enjoys coming up with ideas that he and his wife Ellen can leverage to benefit their foundation. The older he gets, Coach Cal says he realizes it's not about money or him. It's about helping people close to him succeed like his young players.
For more with the coach, watch our hour long special, "A Conversation with Coach Cal," Thursday, 8pm, on WKYT.