Thirty-one-year old Kim English has been an assistant coach in college basketball for nearly four years.
Despite his relative lack of experience, the Tennessee Volunteers assistant apparently had no problem criticizing 55-year old Eric Musselman, who has been a head coach for decades at the highest levels of the game, including the NBA and now Arkansas.
A few months ago, English made a veiled criticism of Musselman for showing uninhibited love and enthusiasm for the game in the form of a hilarious mock solo practice and press conference.
In response, English Tweeted this message: “Young Basketball Coaches: Don’t fall prey to the gross social media self promotion and gimmicks that you see from a select few of today’s Head Coaches,” English wrote on Twitter, one can assume while taking a swig of prune juice and jostling his dentures. “Take the old school approach and just w[o]rk your butt off. Perfect your craft, study the game and grind. This foolery will pass.”
Well, it looks like the knickers that English got into such a wad have thoroughly disentangled.
Apparently bored with re-reading his yellowed, dog-eared copy of the 1973 “Farmer’s Almanac,” English hopped on the social media channel Tik Tok with his wife, and did everything he had railed against in the spring.
The result is this lip syncing of Andrew Gold’s “Thank you for being my friend”:
Thank you for being my friend – remix pic.twitter.com/2Qjew3Zitw— Kim English (@Englishscope24) June 27, 2020
You may remember this tune as the theme song of “The Golden Girls”:
That’s the Golden Girls, folks.
There are no more than 10 things on earth that could be further removed from the game of basketball that show. At least Musselman was Tweeting out entertaining “foolery” that actually involved basketball.
Yes it’s good to know that English walks the walk when it comes to his own warning: “Don’t fall prey to the gross social media self promotion and gimmicks.”
As a reminder, more than 20 Hog fans tweeted him back his own warning:
Young Basketball Coaches: Don’t fall prey to the gross social media self promotion and gimmicks that you see from a select few of today’s Head Coaches. Take the old school approach and just wrk your butt off. Perfect your craft, study the game and grind. This foolery will pass https://t.co/tP6c1ncqWF— John Daly Jr Fan JJ (@JacobJohnson5) June 28, 2020
English claims he won’t do anything like this again, but who is this hypocrite kidding? The cat’s already out of the bag. He’s realized how fun social media can be when you’re not being a sanctimonious prig, and he’s almost certainly going to go down this path again.
Perhaps he can pen and then sing his own tribute to Eric Musselman: “Thank You For Showing Me the Way.”
For the latest of Hogs basketball, go here:
Backstory to Musselman-English “beef“
In early April, before his Tik Tok conversion, English was likely blowing a gasket for what Musselman’s release in the most entertaining video series produced by a college or pro coach in the pandemic offseason.
This time around, it was footage of Musselman acting like an unhinged Arkansas fan.
As he settled into his near-courtside seat in an otherwise deserted Bud Walton Arena, you can see in his eyes as he marvels out how well the nonexistent Razorbacks are stretching that the fan-o-meter inside of him is turned all the way to “Crazy.”
“Alright, let’s win this jump,” he says to his imaginary neighbor. “I’m telling you, every time we win the jump, we win the game. The jump ball’s so important — it’s the most important play of the game.”
“Yeah, we won the jump!!!”
Dear Basketball,— Michael Musselman (@michaelmuss_13) April 9, 2020
Please come back. We need you… BAD
(Previously recorded) pic.twitter.com/sWrVPekNsx
As the “game” rolls on, Musselman the fan becomes progressively agitated with Musselman the coach.
“That’s a foul! Would you please sub somebody?”
“Put a sub in! We need some depth!”
“I can’t take this anymore! Call a timeout! They’re on a 2-0 run. Call a TO,” Musselman yells, his voice nearly cracking.
“Oh my goodness, are we ever gonna call a play! Quit playing ‘space and place.’ Call a play! Execute!”
“No stall ball please!”
This, joyfully, isn’t going to be the last of the “Musselman Alone” series. He said on an Instagram Q&A with fans earlier this week that there will be a fourth installment and “we don’t want to upset any of the other SEC assistant coaches or anything.”
Meanwhile, somewhere in Knoxville, Tenn., Kim English was clutching his pearls and gripping his suspenders.
After Musselman’s video was released, English retweeted this message, according to HawgBeat’s Andrew Hutchinson. (That retweet has apparently since been deleted.)
Eric Musselman counts among his peers and mentors Doc Rivers, who has won an NBA title, and the late Chuck Daly, who coached the original Dream Team.
This wide gap in experience doesn’t appear to matter much to Kim English, however.
Musselman, it seems, was having way too much fun for English’s liking. He seemed to actually enjoy making the two videos filmed at the now-deserted premises at the University of Arkansas.
“Young Basketball Coaches: Don’t fall prey to the gross social media self promotion and gimmicks that you see from a select few of today’s Head Coaches,” English wrote on Twitter, one can assume while taking a swig of prune juice and jostling his dentures. “Take the old school approach and just w[o]rk your butt off. Perfect your craft, study the game and grind. This foolery will pass.”
Fancy that Kim would say this.
Granted, nobody would ever confuse English’s coaching mentors to be “fun” guys. English played for Missouri in 2008-2012, which meant his coaches were Mike Anderson (who left Columbia to become the Hogs head coach) and Frank Haith. Currently, he works for Volunteers head coach Rick Barnes.
Anderson, Haith and Barnes all know better than to fire shots at coaches on opposing teams, especially those leading intra-conference rivals. After the avalanche of responses from Razorback fans, let’s hope English has learned this lesson now as well.
Here are some of the best ones:
Calling out a head coach who has a top 5 recruiting class coming in???— Marty Smith (@MartySmithobc22) March 19, 2020
Geeez bro, you always gonna be an Asst Coach!! ?? pic.twitter.com/g9VIIelGsA
Young coaches, make sure you have a 20 win season and you’re an actual head coach before calling out coaches that actually have and are.— kneejerkfan (@englishaccent78) March 19, 2020
“Eric is one of the best in our sport… He has an uncanny feel for the game, and ability to read where the game is at. More importantly, is his ability to motivate and teach his players what it takes to improve and win. He is as good as it gets.” – Coach John Calipari— Louisville Select FP (@lvilleselectFP) March 19, 2020
Van Gundy “He’s as competitive of a guy as I’ve ever coached against. He’s a brilliant offensive mind and he’s going to be a terrific recruiter because of his competitive nature and what he has to sell. This is a guy who can tell kids exactly what it takes to play in the NBA.”— Louisville Select FP (@lvilleselectFP) March 19, 2020
This is hilarious… and yet here you are on social media… old school would of picked up the phone and called…?♀️— H?️wgGirl? (@SunnyI86) March 19, 2020
More about the shenanigans that really stuck in English’s craw here: