Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Q&A with Morehead State's Sean Woods at OVC Media Day

Here is a Q&A with Morehead State head coach Sean Woods at OVC Media Day:

Q: What are your thoughts on this event?

A: Media Day is always an enjoyable event. It tells me basketball season is here. I like seeing everyone in a more relaxed atmosphere. The OVC has 24 head basketball coaches, and, at this point, everyone is thinking about what they can do to make their teams successful in 2014-15.

Q: Angelo Warner was announced today as a Preseason All-OVC selection. Tell us about your expectations for him this season.

A: We call Angelo "Mr. Consistency." He's our bulldog. Night in and night out, you know what you're going to get out of Angelo. He's consistent on both ends of the floor, which makes him so valuable. We have several quality guards and some talented big men this year, so Angelo has help.

Q: Over the past two years, you've talked about recruiting players who fit your style. How close are you to totally achieving that?

A: I like the direction we're heading. Off the court, we are targeting young men who are serious about getting a college education. On the court, we like to play fast. We are trying to fill the program with athletic kids who love to play basketball. We want gym rats who are working hard to maximize their potential.

Q: It seems like you've been pleased with the marketing and publicity efforts in recent weeks. How important is that visibility for your program?

A: I thought our athletic department did a great job with putting together Light Up the Lot. We had several hundred fans attend that event, including lots of Morehead State students. We hope those individuals will support us throughout the season. I've always said it's about selling the sizzle. That buzz is important for recruiting and our efforts in continuing to build the fan base.

Q: Can you speak to your program's depth this season?

A: I'm hoping everyone will add something to the soup this year to make it tastier.

Photo: MSU Athletics

Coaches from Elon to See Tanner Johnson, Jacob Conway

Coaches from Elon will be in Kentucky this week to see several recruits.

According to Hoop Dreams AAU coach Steve Quattrocchi, Elon will stop by to see Lexington Catholic's Tanner Johnson and Lincoln County's Jacob Conway.

SEC Network to Televise UK's Blue/White Scrimmage and Exhibition Games

The SEC Network will televise Kentucky's upcoming Blue/White scrimmage and both exhibition games.

According to Jerry Tipton of the Herald-Leader:

Coaches Pick Murray State to Win OVC in 2014-15

The Ohio Valley Conference men's basketball coaches have picked Murray State to win the league in the 2014-15.

The Racers are picked to win the West Division with 22 first-place votes and 132 total points. Southeast Missouri is picked second with 2 first-place votes and 109 points. SIUE, Austin Peay, Eastern Illinois and UT Martin (in that order) round out the West Division.

Belmont is the preseason pick in the East Division with 16 first-place votes and 125 total points. Morehead State is second with 4 first-place votes and 103 points. Eastern Kentucky is just behind with 4 first-place votes and 102 points. Tennessee Tech, Jacksonville State and Tennessee State are the bottom three teams in the East Division.

Murray State had 15 first-place votes for overall OVC champion. Belmont earned 7 votes. Eastern Kentucky and Morehead State each earned a single vote.

Murray State's Cameron Payne is Preseason OVC Player of the Year.

Release from the OVC

2014-15 Preseason OVC Men’s Basketball Predicted Order of Finish
Overall OVC Champion: Murray State (15 first-place vote)
Other Teams Receiving Overall First-Place Votes: Belmont (7), Eastern Kentucky (1), Morehead State (1)

East Division
1. Belmont (16 first-place votes) – 125 points
2. Morehead State (4) – 103
3. Eastern Kentucky (4) – 102
4. Tennessee Tech – 71
5. Jacksonville State – 52
6. Tennessee State - 40

West Division
1. Murray State (22 first-place vote) – 132 points
2. Southeast Missouri (2) – 109
3. SIUE – 77
4. Austin Peay – 70
5. Eastern Illinois – 64
6. UT Martin 40
2014-15 Preseason All-OVC Men’s Basketball Team
Preseason OVC Player of the Year: Cameron Payne, Murray State

Jarekious Bradley, Southeast Missouri
Craig Bradshaw, Belmont
Reece Chamberlain, Belmont
Chris Horton, Austin Peay
Cameron Payne, Murray State
T.J. Sapp, Murray State
Myles Taylor, UT Martin
Corey Walden, Eastern Kentucky
Angelo Warner, Morehead State
Jarvis Williams, Murray State

Drop Everything You're Doing and Watch the Story of Lauren Hill Right Now

Drop everything you are doing and go watch this video right now. This is a story that needs to be told and this young lady deserves a few minutes of our time.

I encourage you to watch the video and listen to the story of Lauren Hill.

Grab some tissues and hit the play button:

Lauren, my thoughts and prayers are with you. I plan to be at your game. God bless.

Ramel Bradley Earns Opportunity with VEF Riga in Latvia

Former Kentucky point guard Ramel Bradley has earned a tryout with VEF Riga in Latvia's top-level LBL league.

Bradley's' tryout period will reportedly last no longer than three weeks.

Last season, Bradley spent time with Turk Telecom in Turkey. He has previously played Israel, France and Croatia.


Monday, October 20, 2014

Drake Introduced John Calipari and More at Kentucky's Big Blue Madness

The rapper Drake had a big role in Kentucky's Big Blue Madness event Friday night.

Drake addressed the crowd, introduced John Calipari and even went through the layup line with the Wildcats.

He didn't have as much luck on the basketball court:

Dominique Hagans Ends Up at Talladege College

Former Georgetown College guard Dominique Hagans has ended up transferring to Talladega College, an NAIA program in Talladega, Alabama.

Hagans, who played high school basketball at Lafayette High School, originally planned to transfer to Union College before landing at Talladega.

Talladega is a high-level NAIA program that is picked to win the Gulf Coast Conference this season.

GCAC 2014-15 Preseason Poll (First-place votes in parenthesis)

Team Points
1. Talladega (4)* 58
2. Xavier (3) 57
3. Philander Smith (2) 52
4. Edward Waters 38
5. SUNO 35
6. Tougaloo 20
7. Dillard 15
8. Voorhees 14

*First place vote was split between Talladega and Xavier on one ballot, resulting in nine first place votes.

The tornadoes are led by former Western Kentucky commit Brandon "Snap" Peters. Peters was ruled ineligible to play at Western and ended up leaving the program.

Video: UK Recruit Thon Maker Was a Beast at John Lucas Midwest Camp

Check out these new highlights of 2016 Kentucky recruit Thon Maker at John Lucas Midwest Camp:

Saturday, October 18, 2014

2015 PG Malik Maitland Has Committed to Morehead State University

Malik Maitland, a talented point guard in the class of 2015, has committed to Morehead State University:

Maitland is a 5-foot-11 point guard at Father Lopez (FL) High School.

Video: Highlights of Big Blue Madness 2014

Check out these highlights from Kentucky 2014 Big Blue Madness event:

Tubby Smith Crashes Motorcycle During Texas Tech Madness Event

Former Kentucky head coach Tubby Smith is now the coach at Texas Tech University.

Last night, during Tech's madness event, Smith came out dressed as Shaft on a motorcycle.

Things went downhill quickly when Smith crashed the motorcycle in the middle of Tech's court:

Friday, October 17, 2014

Video: Last Minute of Kentucky's Big Blue Madness Scrimmage

Full highlights coming later...for now, check out the final minute of Kentucky's Big Blue Madness scrimmage (plus comments from John Calipari):

Matthew Mitchell Sings at Kentucky's Big Blue Madness

UK hoops coach Matthew Mitchell sings at Kentucky's Big Blue Madness:

Drake is in the Building at Big Blue Madness

Drake has arrived at Kentucky's Big Blue Madness. There is a rumor circulating that he might perform in some manner.

Stay tuned...

Early Look at Kentucky's Big Blue Madness Setup

Here's an early look at the setup for Kentucky's Big Blue Madness event, which tips off at 7:00 p.m. ET:

National Writer Thinks Kentucky Can Actually Go 40-0 in 2014-15

Finishing a season 40-0 is impossible in modern day college basketball. Right?

Not according to Reid Forgrave of FoxSports.com. Forgrave thinks the Kentucky Wildcats actually have a legitimate shot at the historic mark in 2014-15.

Here is an excerpt of Forgrave's article:

A college basketball team has never won all 40 games, which is what it would take for John Calipari’s Kentucky Wildcats to go from Nov. 14 -- when they play the Grand Canyon Antelopes in Lexington -- all the way to April 6, when a new national champion will be crowned at the Final Four in Indianapolis.

The 1975-76 Indiana Hoosiers were the last undefeated team in Division I hoops, going 32-0. UNLV didn’t lose until the Final Four in 1990-91. The 2003-04 St. Joseph’s squad made it all the way to the Atlantic-10 tournament before losing a game, to Xavier. And last year’s Wichita State team headed into the NCAA tournament undefeated and (I thought) had a real shot of going 40-0 and winning it all – until the top-seeded Shockers were upended by, wouldn’t you know it, the Kentucky Wildcats in what was one of the tournament’s most exciting games.

So what’s the chance at perfection? Um, not great. Maybe 3 percent? Maybe a little bit more? If you’re betting one team against the field, and that’s what you’re doing when you say Kentucky could win every game, you always take the field, of course. Especially when the rare teams that have given perfection a run in the past few decades have tended to come from conferences where powder-puff schedules make these things more possible.

Complete Article

My Thoughts: Personally, I think 40-0 is an impossible feat in today's college basketball. That being said, it is difficult for me to point at any one game on the schedule and say, "I think UK loses this game."

Mark it down, however, the Wildcats will drop a game early in the season, or a in a tough road environment, or in the SEC portion of the schedule...or...you get the point. I'll go with 38-2.

Murray State Freshman JayQuan McCloud is Leaving Racer Basketball Program

Murray State head coach Steve Prohm has confirmed that freshman guard JayQuan McCloud is leaving the Racer basketball program.

According to Prohm, McCloud is homesick and wants to move closer to home.

Here is more from WPSDLocal6.com:

Murray State basketball coach Steve Prohm says freshman guard JayQuan McCloud has decided to leave the Racer program. Prohm said McCloud is homesick and wants to move closer to home.

McCloud averaged 17.4 points per game as a senior at North Chicago Community High School in Illinois. Prohm said this situation has been going on for a few weeks. Prohm recently met with McCloud and his family as they tried to figure out a way for the freshman to stay with the Racers, but that did not happen.

Complete Article

Anthony Davis is No. 4 on #SLAMTop50

Former Kentucky star Anthony Davis is No. 4 on the #SLAMTop50 list of the top NBA players for the 2014-15 season.

Here is an excerpt about Davis:

As for Anthony Davis the basketball player, well, he’s pretty good, perhaps even the greatest 21-year-old ever? Sure, you can probably go through the annals of the NBA and find some guys who were better, but just know this: The 26.5 PER that Davis posted as a 20-year-old last season, it’s the highest number from any 20-year-old in the history of the statistic. It was also fourth in the League last year, not too far behind Kevin Durant’s NBA-leading 29.8 number.

This isn’t to say that PER means everything, or that you should blindly swallow whatever results the data feed you. The point is just to add some context, to use a nice round number to help explain why having a third-year player with no playoff experience and who barely cracked 20 points a game last season at No. 4 on this list isn’t crazy, but, rather, a conservative projection. If you want, the case could be made that Davis deserves to be one spot higher.

Complete Article

Others on the #SLAMTop50 List:

47 Eric Bledsoe Suns PG 14
44 Kenneth Faried Nuggets PF 11
26 Rajon Rondo Celtics PG 9
20 DeMarcus Cousins Kings C 3
18 John Wall Wizards PG 8
10 Kevin Love Cavs PF 3
9 James Harden Rockets SG 1
8 Blake Griffin Clippers PF 2
7 Carmelo Anthony Knicks SF 3
6 Russell Westbrook Thunder PG 3
5 Stephen Curry Warriors PG 2

Centre College Ranked No. 22 in Division III News Preseason Poll

Centre College is ranked No. 22 in the nation in Division III News' preseason top 25 poll.

The Colonels finished 2013-14 with a 24-5 overall record. They were 13-1 in conference play and earned their seventh NCAA Tournament big in the last eight years.


2.Illinois Wesleyan
6.Washington (Mo.)
9.St. Thomas
11.Albertus Magnus
16.Wisconsin-Stevens Point
17.Virginia Wesleyan
19.Rhode Island College
20.Richard Stockton
21.Wheaton (Ill.)
25.Eastern Connecticut

2014-15 Centre College Roster

No. Name Pos. Cl. Ht. Wt. Hometown/High School
3 Sam Gruber G So. 5-11 160 LaGrange, Ky. / Oldham County
4 Michael Arnett F Jr. 6-4 190 Danville, Ky. / Boyle County
14 Gunnar Miller G So. 5-10 160 Franklin, Tenn. / Davidson Academy
21 Andrew Steggeman G So. 6-0 180 New Albany, Ind. / Collegiate
22 Blake Scinta F Jr. 6-8 205 Louisville, Ky. / Kentucky Country Day
23 Mike Geegan G Sr. 6-1 175 Bowling Green, Ky. / Bowling Green
33 Josh Karsner F Sr. 6-4 205 Frankfort, Ky. / Bluegrass United
34 Matt Gump G So. 6-4 190 Bellefontaine, Ohio / Bellefontaine
40 Bryan Repishti G Jr. 6-0 170 Louisville, Ky. / DuPont Manual
42 Tyler Wesley F Jr. 6-6 210 Crestwood, Ky. / Oldham County
45 Mark Sandoval F Jr. 6-4 185 Lebanon, Tenn. / Friendship Christian Academy
55 Brett Jones G So. 5-9 160 Danville, Ky. / Boyle County
Drew Burns F Fr. 6-6 210 Alexandria, Ky. / Bishop Brossart
Will Maguire G Fr. 6-2 180 Atlanta, Ga. / St. Pius X
Kyle Mann G Fr. 5-10 180 Southside, Ala. / Southside
Zach Schmucker F Fr. 6-5 220 Cincinnati, Ohio / St. Xavier
Zach Tarter F Fr. 6-5 190 Danville, Ky. / Danville Christian Academy

Head coach: Greg Mason
Assistant coach: Ryan Wiersma
Assistant coach: Ronnie Bottoms

Fox Sports Live Goes One-On-One with John Calipari

John Calipari sits down for a one-on-one interview with Reid Forgrave of Fox Sports Live.

This is an outstanding interview:

Media Picks Murray State to Win OVC Championship in 2014-15

The media has picked Murray State to win the Ohio Valley Conference in 2014-15.

The Racers earned 16 first-place votes as the pick for overall champion. They had 22 first-place votes and 132 points in the West Division poll.

Southeast Missouri is picked to finish second in the West Division with 109 points. Eastern Illinois is third, followed by Austin Peay, SIUE and UT Martin.

Belmont is the choice to win the East Division with 19 first-place votes and 127 points.

Eastern Kentucky, last season's tournament champions, is picked to finish second with 104 points and a single first-place vote.

Morehead State, which obtained 2 first-place votes and 97 points, sits in third.

The bottom three in the East Division are Tennessee Tech, Jacksonville State and Tennessee State.

Murray State's Cameron Payne is the Preseason Player of the Year.

2014-15 Media OVC Preseason Men's Predicted Order of FinishOverall Champion: Murray State (16 first-place votes)

East Division 1. Belmont (19 first-place votes) - 127 points
2. Eastern Kentucky (1) - 104
3. Morehead State (2) - 97
4. Tennessee Tech - 62
5. Jacksonville State - 41
6. Tennessee State - 31

West Division 1. Murray State (22 first-place votes) - 132 points
2. Southeast Missouri - 109
3. Eastern Illinois - 68
4. Austin Peay - 60
5. SIUE - 57
6. UT Martin - 36

Preseason Player of the Year: Cameron Payne, Murray State

Daniel Orton is Headed to China for 2014-15

Former University of Kentucky center Daniel Orton is headed to China for the 2014-15 season.

Orton, who was recently waived by the Washington Wizards, has signed with Shanxi Zhongyu in China's top-level CBA league.

Here are details from Asiabasket.com:

Shanxi Zhongyu (CBA) agreed terms with 24-year old American forward Daniel Orton (208-116kg-90, college: Kentucky). He was about to sign at Washington Wizards in the NBA. The last season Orton played at Maine Red Claws in D-League. In 24 games he had 11.3ppg, 7.2rpg, 1.8apg and 2.1bpg. He also played at 76ers in NBA that season. In 21 games he recorded 3.1ppg and 2.9rpg.

Read More

Orton never appeared in a preseason game for the Wizards. He missed several games with a calf injury.

If Orton does end up back in the NBA, he'll be suspended for one regular season game for leaving the bench during a dust up between the Wizards and Bulls.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Morehead State Getting Ready for Tonight's Light Up the Lot Event

Morehead State is getting ready for tonight's Light Up the Lot madness event.

The event tips off at 6:00 p.m. ET and figures to be a unique outdoor experience for fans.

Check it out:

Kentucky is No. 1 in the First USA Today Coaches Poll for 2014-15, Louisville is No. 9

The Kentucky Wildcats are No. 1 in the first USA Today Coaches Poll of 2014-15. UK obtained 24 first-place votes and 785 points overall.

Arizona is second with 746 points and 3 first-place votes followed by Duke with 715 points and 2 first-place votes.

Wisconsin and Kansas round out the top 5.

Here’s a look at the top 10:

1. Kentucky (24) 785 points
2. Arizona (3) 746
3. Duke (2) 715
4. Wisconsin (3) 706
5. Kansas 654
6. North Carolina 598
7. Florida 568
8. Virginia 519
9. Louisville 507
10. Texas 479

Complete Top 25

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Antonio Blakeney Won't Be Visiting Kentucky For Madness

According to Evan Daniels, 2015 star Antonio Blakeney will no longer be visiting Kentucky for Big Blue Madness.

Blakeney will be working to schedule another Kentucky visit.

Union College Picked to Repeat as AAC Champions in 2014-15

Union College has been picked by the league's coaches to repeat as champions of the Appalachian Athletic Conference in 2014-15.

The Bulldogs received 99 total points and 9-of-10 first-place votes in the league's coaches poll that was released today.

Here is a release from the ACC:

ASHEVILLE, N.C. - Coming off the best season in program history, Union is projected to repeat as the Appalachian Athletic Conference men's basektball champion, according to the 2014-15 AAC Coaches' Poll released on Wednesday.

Union won both the AAC regular-season and tournament championships, going 16-2 in conference play and finishing with a 28-5 overall record. Union advanced to the NAIA National Championship Tournament and lost 75-72 on a last-second shot to Saint Thomas (Fla.) in the first round. The 28 wins are the most in program history.

Receiving nine of the possible 10 first-place votes, Union collected 99 total voting points. Tennessee Wesleyan received the remaining first-place vote and is second in the poll with 75 points.

Rounding out the top five are Bluefield (72 points), Reinhardt (69 points) and Bryan (65 points). Milligan (63 points) begins the second five with Montreat (33 points), St. Andrews (28 points), Point (26 points), and Truett-McConnell (20 points) making up the rest of the field.

As the regular-season runner-up, Reinhardt also advanced to the NAIA National Champion Tournament last season, finishing 18-14 overall and 13-5 in conference action. Reinhardt lost 87-72 to Indiana Wesleyan in the opening round.

The AAC Tournament is set for February 24-28, 2015, at the MeadowView Marriott Conference Resort & Convention Center in Kingsport, Tenn. This marks the third year in a row the tournament will be held at this venue.

2014-15 AAC Men's Basketball Coaches' Poll

Place Team (First-Place Votes) Total Points*
1 Union (9) 99
2 Tennessee Wesleyan (1) 75
3 Bluefield 72
4 Reinhardt 69
5 Bryan 65
6 Milligan 63
7 Montreat 33
8 St. Andrews 28
9 Point 26
10 Truett-McConnell 20

*-Coaches ranked the teams in predicted order of finish from first to 10th. Each team received 10 points for a first-place votes, nine points for second, etc.

Perry Central's Braxton Beverly to Visit WKU This Weekend

Perry Central point guard Braxton Beverly, one of the top player's in Kentucky's Class of 2016, will visit Western Kentucky University this weekend for their Hilltopper Hysteria event.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Source: KHSAA Denies Malik Dow's Appeal at Mercer County

I am told by a good source that the KHSAA has denied Malik Dow's appeal to play high school basketball at Mercer County High School.

Dow, an athletic forward, transferred to Mercer County from Ballard High School.

The KHSAA originally denied his eligibility several weeks ago and an appeal was filed.

UK to be Featured Three Times on CBS Sports Network in 2014-15

The Kentucky Wildcats will be featured in three games on the CBS Sports Network this season.

CBS Sports released their full schedule of college basketball games this morning.

Here's a look at the schedule:

Key non-conference games on CBS:

• North Carolina at Kentucky – Saturday, Dec. 13
• North Carolina vs. Ohio State – Saturday, Dec. 20 (CBS Sports Classic)
• UCLA vs. Kentucky – Saturday, Dec. 20 (CBS Sports Classic)
• Connecticut at Florida – Saturday, Jan. 3
• UNLV at Kansas – Sunday, Jan. 4

Key non-conference games on CBS Sports Network:

• Tennessee vs. VCU – Friday, Nov. 14 (Veterans Classic)
• Michigan State vs. Navy – Friday, Nov. 14 (Veterans Classic)
• Bucknell at Villanova – Thursday, Nov. 20
• USC at New Mexico – Sunday, Nov. 30
• Temple at St. Joseph's – Wednesday, Dec. 3
• Villanova at LaSalle – Wednesday, Dec. 3
• Penn State at Marshall – Saturday, Dec. 6
• Alabama at Xavier – Saturday, Dec. 6
• Oklahoma at Tulsa – Saturday, Dec. 13
• Arizona at UNLV – Tuesday, Dec. 23
• Ole Miss at Dayton – Tuesday, Dec. 30

Key intra-conference games on CBS:

• Duke at North Carolina State – Sunday, Jan. 11
• Kansas at Texas – Saturday, Jan. 24
• Indiana at Ohio State – Sunday, Jan. 25
• Michigan at Michigan State – Sunday, Feb. 1
• Notre Dame at Duke – Saturday, Feb. 7
• Georgetown at St. John's – Saturday, Feb. 28
• SMU at Connecticut – Sunday, March 1
• Florida at Kentucky – Saturday, March 7
• Stanford at Arizona – Saturday, March 7

Complete Schedule

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