By LARRY VAUGHT
Surely former Louisville coach Rick Pitino had to know that Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin wouldn’t stay silent about Pitino’s claim in his new book — “Pitino” My Story” — that Bevin played a role in his firing at Louisville.
Bevin fired back this morning during an appearance on the Leland Conway Show and held nothing back.
“It’s pretty sad. It really is,” Bevin said. “He was a great coach, and his life is devolving into this.”
Book excerpts have Pitino calling the governor a “religious zealot with a puritanical streak” who also didn’t get along with former Louisville athletics director Tom Jurich, who also was fired.
Conway had an audio clip from a recent interview Pitino did promoting his book — why in the world Pitino wanted to write a book and keep this controversy brewing is something I’ll never understand — where he said he knew people who would testify Bevin wanted Jurich out. I’m just not quite sure what difference that makes even if Bevin did want Jurich out.
“Here’s a guy who also excelled at many levels, both at UK and at U of L — not so much, a little bit of a sad chapter there with the Celtics — but in general a guy who has been up and down and mostly up,” Bevin told Conway.
“And now, he just sounds like a desperate, angry, bitter person, who wants to lay blame everywhere but at his own feet, which is where, frankly, so much of it belongs.”
But my guess is if you read Pitino’s book, blame will be placed just about everywhere except at Pitino’s own feet.