Fool me once…

As a brief follow up to yesterday’s post, it turns out that last Thursday wasn’t the first time Coach K lectured an opposing player and then denied doing so.

In 2007, after Virginia Tech upset the then-fifth-ranked Duke Blue Devils in Cameron, Tech star Zabian Dowdell celebrated a bit too exuberantly for K’s tastes.

Via R.L. Bynum, recalling an article in the Baltimore Sun:

“He just told me I’m too classy of a guy to be carrying on like that,” said Dowdell.

On Monday’s ACC teleconference, Roanoke Times reporter Mark Berman attempted to bring it up, but was interrupted by Krzyzewski – repeatedly.

“I understand you did speak to Zabian Dowdell about how he was celebrating,” Berman started.

“No, no, I just congratulated him,” Krzyzewski said. “I respect the heck out of him. He’s a great kid and that’s enough said. He was fabulous. That’s the main message that was made.”

“He said …”

“That’s all I’m going to say about it because I admire the kid and I admire the program and it was a [great] win for them and I’ll say that forever.”

“You …”

“That’s all I’m going to say about it,” Krzyzewski said.

In that case, no audio subsequently surfaced to disprove Coach K’s denial. But it’s hard to believe that Dowdell would have made something like this up – there’s just no reason for the player to do so.

Does two such instances constitute a pattern?

By the way, Francesa did spend a few minutes yesterday discussing Coach K’s lie last week, and Francesa was quite upset about it, though much more subdued than when he was railing against the caller who brought to his attention the lip-reading story.

For his part, as many of have suggested, it seems unlikely that K would approve of other coaches lecturing his players, though there are certainly grounds for doing so when it comes, for example, to a certain Ted Cruz lookalike.

So, maybe he should try to retire that particular habit.



  1. This annoyed me as a Duke fan because a) Coach K is 100% wrong and b) this and Grayson Allen tripping people just feeds into some of the overblown stuff with Duke. Hasn’t Coach K been around long enough and won enough that he doesn’t get offended by a team celebrating beating his team? I don’t know whether it’s his own ego or some bullshit about the “integrity of the game”. But this shouldn’t even register on his radar. He should have been thinking about how to recruit more than 6 guys that can play in case your PF gets hurt and you need someone to fill in instead of only literally warm the bench.

    1. The good news for Duke fans is that Coach K has become such a recruiting juggernaut that I don’t think it will hurt him in any larger sense. It’s just a weird, self-inflicted wound.

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