Digging into the Calhoun/Calipari rivalry

Connecticut Huskies head coach Jim Calhoun gestures as his team plays the San Diego Aztecs during their NCAA West Regional college basketball game in Anaheim, California March 24, 2011. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson (UNITED STATES – Tags: SPORT BASKETBALL)

ESPN’s Andy Katz outlines what has been something of a heated rivalry between Jim Calhoun and John Calipari.

The perceived breaking point between the two schools — and coaches — occurred during the recruitment of Hartford-area center Marcus Camby in 1993.

“I was responsible for recruiting Marcus and I did everything I possibly could,” Dickenman said. “I tried and I tried, and the bottom line is I was talking to a wall. We weren’t going to get him. We did have him on a visit with Kirk King and Ray Allen. We had this feeling that we weren’t in it and we never really were.”

“At the time John was an up-and-comer, a hot-shot name, and Jim doesn’t like to lose to anyone,” Dickenman said. “John has tremendous charisma and he’s a little brash. Jim had taken some things personal, but I don’t think they were necessarily directed at Jim.

Calhoun doesn’t like to lose at all, but he really doesn’t like to lose to hot-shot coaches like Calipari, so there will be a little extra juice to the UConn/Kentucky tilt on Saturday night.

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