I just figured that Buddy didn't want to be the sole focus of the team. He didn't want the his teammates to be upset with him if a coach rode him all year to be "the guy". After watching the coach he realized that the coach was more about the team than the individual and that the coach didn't care what anyone else thought. Buddy saw how the town was against the coach for no real reason and he decided he wanted to play for him (plus the town was saying Buddy would play if the coach went and Buddy knew that wasn't the case)
That was the reason I came up with anyway.
You're talking about the legendary Jimmy Chitwood. I get that this is a mistake, but it is a pretty big one. Come on, man.
Was it "Buddy" who made every shot on that dirt court with Coach talking to him until he said he didn't care if he played for him or not and then "Buddy" missed the next shot? And, then made the next one, showing that he was rattled for just a moment?
Was it Buddy who said, "I can make it" and then drained the game winning shot against South Bend?
I just can't see a "Buddy" being that clutch.