Miners celebrate success with John Calipari

May, 2, 2011
5/02/11
3:18
PM ET
Kentucky coach John Calipari spent his Friday visiting with miners in the Eastern part of the state and tweeted, "It means so much to me & my family that I'm able to share time w/all these hard-working folks."

Calipari's appearance in fact was meant as a reward for the miners who had completed 400 days without a significant workplace injury, Alliance Coal CEO Joe Craft told WKYT-TV.
"Three hundred sixty-five days without a lost-time accident is very significant in our business. And we were there talking about their success and celebrating and having a good time. Everyone said, 'Well, what are you going to do at 400? You think you can get Cal to come up here?'"

So Calipari, whose grandfather was a miner, took the time to speak to the miners, sign autographs and bring good cheer. He posed for pictures in front of a banner reading, "Coal. Cats. Cal."

Calipari was able to bring his celebrity power to a segment of the fan base that is so important to the state's industry and also apparently works efficiently as a team.

"I get a feel for what my relatives did during their time in the mines," Calipari tweeted. "You want to talk about salt-of-the-earth folks? These are them."

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