There will never be another John Chaney. There can’t be another John Chaney, because a coach who speaks his mind in such brazen and devil may care ways would be IMMEDIATELY cancelled in this day and age. He wouldn’t have lasted two seasons if he had coached in this century.
Would anyone survive goon gate? Could any coach barge into an opposing coach’s press conference and threaten to kill him? Oh my goodness no. But John Chaney could, because John Chaney was a legend and could do whatever the fuck he wanted.
Even today, 26 years later, I still randomly say “I’ll kill you! I’ll kill you Calipari!” to myself and have a good chuckle. There was nobody better.
I rarely write for this website anymore, but the death of a many who I adored from afar brought me out of hibernation. He was a legend, and if he had paid more attention to recruiting five-start talent, not insisted on 5 a.m. practices, an undying love of the 2-3 zone, and running some of the most common offensive sets I’ve ever seen as a basketball fan he probably would have won a championship.
But then he wouldn’t have been John Chaney, the coach who was obsessed with winning (and lord knows he did a lot of it) but who was more obsessed with molding young athletes into men they could be proud of. He style wasn’t for everyone, and it certainly detracted more of the sublime athletes from the Temple program, but ask anyone who has played for Coach Chaney and they’ll tell you of the indelible mark he’s made on their lives.
John was the best, even for a casual Temple Owls fan like me, and I was drawn to him immediately. He made you want to smash cinder blocks over your head and ferociously box out a 6’11 power forward for an offensive rebound. He made you want to keep your hands up on defense to get an ever important deflection. He made you want to kill John Calipari. He was a legend.
Rest in peace, John. I’ll run a few wind sprints in your honor tomorrow at 5 a.m.
I mean, I won’t do that, but I’ll definitely drink a few beers tonight and watch you yell at Coach Calipari on a loop.