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John Calipari surprises a small-town McDonald’s with the NCAA championship trophy

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John Calipari at the McDonald's in Martin, Ky. (Photo via Matt Jones, Kentucky Sports Radio)

Any customers in line Thursday afternoon at the drive-thru window at the McDonald's in Martin, Ky., probably had a longer wait than they originally anticipated.

The entire staff took a 10-minute break from dishing out Big Macs, fries and Happy Meals to meet the special guest who unexpectedly burst through the door and stepped up to the cash register.

In the midst of a two-day statewide bus tour with his staff and the national championship trophy, Kentucky coach John Calipari instructed the driver to stop at the nearest McDonald's because his wife was famished. When the bus driver pulled into the McDonald's in Martin, Calipari thought it would be fun to surprise everyone inside by taking the championship trophy in with him.

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"I turned my head and he and his wife came in with the trophy and a bunch of other people," said 17-year-old employee Corey Terry, who was manning the drive-thru window at the time. "Everything stopped while he was here. He told us to get together with the trophy and we all took a picture with it."

Calipari was only inside the McDonald's long enough for his wife to order chicken strips, but those few minutes made a lasting impression on the staff. They shook his hand, touched the championship trophy and snapped at least a dozen pictures.

Terry said that was the first time anyone famous had stopped by the McDonald's since he began working there. Martin is a rural town of 633 people located roughly 125 miles east of Lexington.

"This was a once-in-a-lifetime experience for us," Terry said. "I've never seen anything like this happen. It was pretty cool. We haven't stopped talking about it ever since."

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