Julius Randle: “What Does Attainment Mean?”

julius randle final four

Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

After the Kentucky Wildcats knocked off Wisconsin in the Final Four Saturday night to advance to the National Championship game against the Connecticut Huskies, all the talk was about Aaron Harrison hitting yet another contested game-winner from beyond the arc. However, the spotlight slowly shifted when, during the postgame press conference, Kentucky’s Julius Randle was asked if he felt any sense of attainment.

Randle gives a split-second, blank stare before turning to his right and asking, “What does attainment mean?”

I’m not one to sit and judge others for their lack of vocabulary skills. After all, I didn’t just score 16 points in a Final Four game. But there’s something that will very obviously be taken away from Randle’s rather embarrassing moment — the continually diminishing perception of the one-and-done college basketball players (especially at larger programs like Kentucky) will take another clean punch to the face.

Quite honestly, I laughed when I first saw the video. I think many college freshmen would have given a ridiculously broad answer in the hopes of somewhat answering the question at hand. Not Randle, though. He leans right on over and has a question of his own.

In a sense then, I guess it would be okay to even have a bit of admiration for the young kid. You can make a pretty safe bet against that, though. Virtually everyone outside the Kentucky basketball fanbase will claim to despise the Wildcats, mostly because of the one-and-done path of what seems like every player who comes through the program.

At the very least, we have another segment of this crazy tournament to force a second look, or listen. I appreciate it.

Tyler Fenwick is a Big 10 writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @Ty_Fenwick, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.

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  • yorgo

    This is the sad commentary with regards the overpriced and underperforming status of the higher educational system today and its total dilution of quality; but spin it the way you will.

    • armchairdan

      If you want to critique someone’s education, you might want to consider using correct grammar. In English, we use a comma before coordinating conjunctions–not a semi-colon. You could replace that “but” with an adverbial conjunction (“nonetheless”) and keep the semi-colon, but you would then need a comma after the conjunctive. More appropriately, you could have just left out the “but” and used the semi-colon to join the two independent clauses. The “but” would have been assumed given the context. On top of that, “sense of attainment” is a relatively oblique usage of the word (appearing 125,000 times in the last ten or so years of searchable text compared to the 27,000,000 times “sense of accomplishment” has been used. In the bright lights of a on-camera interview, not knowing the meaning of any relatively uncommon word isn’t that odd.

  • Jbro

    What the hell is a sense of attainment? Sense of accomplishment? That was one of the most poorly worded questions I have ever heard in my life, and I think it is perfectly acceptable to not understand the meaning of attainment in that context. Randle shouldn’t be embarrassed; the reporter should.

    • Cody G

      Coming off the heels of a win over Wisconsin in the Final Four as a freshman, I’d say that word was perfectly acceptable. Also, the root word “attain” is pretty common. Add -ment to that end of the word and you’d expect any student that has been enrolled at a four-year flagship university to have a good idea of the meaning of the word.