JamesOn Curry played his last game for Oklahoma State in 2007.
But it seems he still has a strong opinion on the direction of his former program and, more particularly, the man now leading that program.
It started from an innocent Twitter question thrown Curry’s way on Monday afternoon, basically asking him if he still followed OSU hoops and what he thought about the job Travis Ford was doing:
Although unlikely, at first glance, it’s conceivable that Curry hadn’t heard of Ford. Maybe he follows the team on a fringe basis, checking results but not delving into the specifics.
That certainly wasn’t the case, as Curry would spell out in a long string of tweets that will make up the rest of this post.
Even if Curry stopped right there, that’s a mildly interesting revelation. He never played for Ford, leaving OSU a season before the now five-year Cowboy coach arrived in Stillwater. But he seemed to insinuate a dislike from personal interactions.
Fortunately for those interested, Curry continued to delve into more details, including an incident at a camp a few years back that seems to have birthed this disdain.
(Quick confession: If I was in ‘The Sixth Man’, I’d probably tell everybody, too. I used to love that movie.)
I’ve dealt with Travis Ford on numerous occasions over the past couple seasons, covering the team as a student journalist and eventually with The Oklahoman.
Each time, he’s been genuinely friendly and accommodating to myself and others, even when it wasn’t necessary. One of my favorite coaches to deal with. And he’s never came off as the self-centered type.
But I’m aware you can’t judge a person solely off the second-hand account of someone else — mine, Curry’s or anyone else’s.
Anyway, the former OSU guard wasn’t done ranting, identifying a problem that some other Cowboy die hards have with Ford — that he’s not a Cowboy alum.
I understand the sentiment. Truly, I do. If someone has stronger ties to a school, conceivably, he’s more likely to stick around and stay invested in building it up.
But that’s certainly not a guarantee. Mike Gundy has made that painfully obvious in recent offseasons, flirting with almost every appealing job offer imaginable despite being a former OSU quarterback and Stillwater legend.
And to a couple of the other points:
-Yes, Travis Ford’s likely dream job would be Kentucky. He played and graduated from there. But Ford can separate pipedream from reality. John Calipari (not a UK grad, by the way) has that one locked up pretty securely.
-While you may not like the recent results and, like Curry, may not believe Ford embraces the tradition enough, there’s no denying that he has worked his tail off for the program. Question his coaching ability, don’t question his work ethic or tenaciousness on the recruiting trail.
-The whole ‘Marcus Smart will save his job’ statement is going to become a tired argument during the next year. Smart didn’t just fall into Travis Ford’s lap. He recruited him, he signed him and he created a comfortable enough team environment that Smart felt secure risking millions to come back and play for him. There’s something to be said for that.
Anyway, here’s a number of other Ford-related tweets that Curry threw out there on Monday:
Maybe Self can bring along Coach K and Tom Izzo as his assistants. That’s just about as likely as him leaving Kansas.