“E-Rupption in Wildcat Country,” by Curry Kirkpatrick (from Sports Illustrated, 1969)
Adolph Rupp, some say, is deathly ill with diabetes and only hanging on so that Gabriel will call him from the bench rather than the bed; Rupp is not much sick at all, say others, but is cunningly gathering his rosebuds and some sentiment, too, that will allow him to continue coaching forever. Mike Casey, Kentucky’s broken-legged shooting star, will miraculously return to the starting lineup any day now; Casey will not play this or any other year in Lexington but will sign a large contract with the Kentucky Colonels of the ABA. Harry Lancaster, Rupp’s longtime assistant, is going around with knives for assorted backs now that he is athletic director and boss and can lord it all over his onetime mentor. Finally, the new coach, if there ever is one, will be Frank Ramsey or Cliff Hagan or Colonel Sanders or Daniel Boone or anyone else except the best and only man for the job, Rupp’s bright and articulate assistant, Joe Hall, who has been promised the position.