Rick Pitino’s tears, Tyra’s lack of experience, America’s delusions…

Where to begin, eh?

Well, you know me: a traditionalist to the core. So let me start this week’s chin-wag by preemptively calling you a feeble-minded, toffee-nosed toss-pot.

Charming. However, one thing I do appreciate about our friendship is that, unlike the president and his secretary of state, at least we insult one another to our faces. But moving on, you must be filled with joy over Pitino’s downfall, yes?

For a while I wasn’t sure if I could cope with it… like it was so sweet I thought I might get diabetes. But what makes it even better is the fact that this gimcrack gangster, who’s ripped this city and state off for years, is now crying like a child. If you’re going to be a gangster, be a fucking gangster. Capone and Dillinger didn’t cry when they got caught.

Well, in fairness Dillinger didn’t have much chance to cry when he got caught, seeing as he was riddled with bullets. But I take your point. The FBI doesn’t indict without good evidence, and with reasonable fortune, it’ll amount to enough for the uni to fire Pitino without forking over another farthing. The programme is rotten root to branch: A clean start will be a good thing for the city. What do you make of this new AD?

In the circumstances, someone who runs a Connecticut-based, private equity firm is a slightly odd choice. A barbarian at the gate who has, as far as I know, never worked in an academic environment in his life. Not that that’s a prerequisite, I suppose. Since we’re talking about UofL Athletics, this has nothing to do with education or our city’s values — it’s a tax-funded pseudo-business-first entertainment company.

At least someone will now tackle the big question: how to extract value from UofL’s under-leveraged balance sheet? And I see he’s on the UofL Foundation Board. So despite our shared love for the Beautiful Game, it’s jobs for the boys, basically. No change whatsoever: at one level an odd choice, at another a totally logical progression.

Yeah, the swamp is deep. And as long as fans keep conflating the perceived wellbeing of the players with the need for a basketball programme at a college, we’re stuck with a second-rate sport being supported by a third-rate university.

So it would appear. Not to say this Vince Tyra bloke couldn’t do a good job, but with zero experience it’s a long shot. Look at Trump’s cabinet: zero experience of anything but fleecing mugs, and look, it turns out that’s all they’re capable of.

What I will say is that Jurich’s vaguely decent reputation is undeserved, unless the purpose of a university athletics department is to make a handful of bent anoraks filthy rich and to protect them no matter what scumbaggery they get up to. Which it probably is.

Which it definitely is. So long as they retain enough chutzpah to lecture poor kids on character and values while getting stinking rich off their backs, that’s all that counts. And Petrino has a multimillion-dollar deal that relies on Jurich keeping his job! A den of villains.

Another nogoodnik with a dodgy history. Speaking of jobs for the boys, I see Padgett is also going straight for the nepotistic buck by giving his old man a gig.

Meh, not so fussed about that. If I landed a sinecure thrashing the servants, I’d call on my old man’s experience too.

Much as I like your old man, and using you as a prima facie example of failed parenting, he did such a rotten job I wouldn’t be surprised if there was an arsenal of semi-automatic weapons stashed in your basement.

Christ, what a mess that is. This country is like an addict who refuses to admit he has a problem — or at least the tyrannical minority that runs the place is. I don’t know why people waste their breath talking gun control. Never going to happen over here: This place is like a socially unaware version of Beirut.

In my arguably humble opinion, the most fundamental problem this country has — and that will one day be its undoing — is its delusional belief in American Exceptionalism. So many people still buy into the idea that his place is somehow special. Imperialism, as we Brits learnt over the course of the last century-or-so, is a nonsense you embrace at your own peril, especially today when globalism has minimised so many questionably acquired advantages

Totally agreed. Great place, lots of amazing things and achievements, but the same could be said for every successful — and currently nonexistent —– empire the world has ever seen. They all thought they were the dog’s bollocks. We don’t need gun control, and we don’t need universal healthcare because we are the exception.

Fostering the ritual immolation of your own people does make a country exceptional, though — exceptionally slow to learn.

Full circle back to the basketball team. Well played, my lad. Well played.