Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski took exception to critical comments that ESPN analyst Jalen Rose made about the school, saying they were “very insulting to everyone here at Duke.”
Rose, as part of an ESPN Films documentary “The Fab Five” that aired March 13 (Rose was an executive producer), said black Blue Devils basketball players recruited in the early 1990s were “Uncle Toms.”
“I hated Duke and I hated everything Duke stood for. Schools like Duke didn’t recruit players like me. I felt like they only recruited black players that were Uncle Toms,” Rose said in the documentary.
Former Duke and NBA star Grant Hill already called the comments “sad and somewhat pathetic.”
“Obviously, that was a poor choice of words and very insulting to everyone here at Duke but especially, not just our African-American players, but any African-American students,” Krzyzewski said on “The Waddle & Silvy Show” on ESPN 1000 in Chicago Tuesday. “When you judge within a race, you start judging, like you put categories as to who you are. I think that’s just the wrong thing to do.”
Krzyzewski said one of the Fab Five could have ended up at Duke.
“We were very successful against them and, to be quite frank with you, we recruited Chris Webber,” he said. “I didn’t recruit Jalen Rose because we had Grant Hill and I’m happy with that. We didn’t look at the other, Juwan Howard [because] we knew he wasn’t going to come to Duke. The other two kids we didn’t think were the caliber that could play as well as Thomas Hill and Brian Davis and Billy McCaffery. They’re good kids. They were good kids.”
Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski called “The Waddle Silvy Show” while Jay Williams was co-hosting and discussed the Fab Five documentary as well as the Bulls and Derrick Rose.
“They had a heck of a run but, they didn’t leave anything, they didn’t establish anything there,” Krzyzewski said. “The guys that I had established something that Jay Williams continued to do 10 years later — the standards of what it meant to be a Duke basketball player.”
Williams, a college basketball analyst for ESPN, spoke about the topic on ESPN 1000 as well Tuesday. He said that Rose texted him and Hill on the eve of the show and said that his quotes did not pertain to them. When Williams saw the show, he was still unhappy.