Thursday, August 21, 2014

John Calipari Calls Out Mike Francesa Following Critical Comments

Kentucky head coach John Calipari appeared on Mike Francesa's show yesterday.

After his appearance, Calipari left and was apparently listening to the show on the radio. Francesa criticized Calipari, calling him a great recruiter and motivator but a not so great X's and O's coach.

Calipari then called into the show as "John in Kentucky" to give his thoughts on Francesa's comments.

This is hilarious:

Christen Cunningham Nails Clutch Free Throws to Save Samford in the Bahamas

Former Cordia and Henry Clay point guard Christen Cunningham played three outstanding games for the Samford Bulldogs in the Bahamas.

Cunningham scored 12 points in Samford's 95-62 win over the Real Deal Shockers on Sunday.

Monday, he followed that up with 19 points, 4 rebounds and 4 assists in a 108-71 victory over the Atlantis All-Stars.

His biggest contribution of the trip might have came yesterday, however, as Cunningham stepped to the free throw near the end of regulation with Samford trailing by two points. The freshman calmly sank both free throws to tie the game and send it to overtime.

Samford pulled away in overtime for an 88-81 victory over the South Side Bulls. Cunningham finished with 12 points.

In 3 games in the Bahamas, Cunningham averaged 14.3 points.

Former Memphis Center Dominic Woodson Enrolls at Tennessee

Tennessee has apparently landed former Memphis center Dominic Woodson. According to reports, Woodson has enrolled at Tennessee.

Here is more from NBCSports.com:

Murmurs of Woodson joining Donnie Tyndall’s program began Wednesday afternoon, with a picture of a Dominic Woodson in the school database for the upcoming semester being sent out on Twitter. However with there being no photo, there was no guarantee that this was indeed the same person who played at Memphis last year.

Ultimately Woodson’s enrollment was confirmed, with Woodson expected to be in classes when they begin on Thursday.

Read More

Woodson, a 6-foot-10 center, would give the Volunteers a much-needed post presence. He averaged 2.5 points and 1.9 rebounds per game for the Tigers.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Keith Bogans to be Inducted Into UK Athletics Hall of Fame

Former University of Kentucky star Keith Bogans will be one of six former Wildcats to be inducted into the UK Athletics Hall of Fame in September.

Here is a portion of a release from UK:

LEXINGTON, Ky. -- Six University of Kentucky greats will be inducted into the UK Athletics Hall of Fame in late September. The 2014 class includes former UK student-athletes Keith Bogans (men’s basketball), Pat Etcheberry (track and field athlete/coach, also strength and conditioning coach), Marty Moore (football), Passion Richardson (track and field athlete/coach), Terry Shumpert (baseball) and Sarah Witten (women’s tennis). The class will be formally inducted during Hall of Fame Weekend, Sept. 26-27, in conjunction with the football game against Vanderbilt.

Keith Bogans, Men’s Basketball, 2000-03

Associated Press third-team All-America in 2003 in addition to National Association of Basketball Coaches second-team All-America honors … First-team All-SEC member (AP and Coaches) in 2003 and second-team All-SEC (AP and Coaches) in 2001 … Named 2003 SEC Tournament MVP and earned All-SEC Tournament team honors in 2001 … Made 2000 All-SEC Freshman Team … Ranks fourth on UK’s all-time scoring list with 1,923 points … Ranks second in UK history in three-point field goals made (254) and started the second-most games in UK history with 122 … Led UK to two Elite Eight finishes in the 2000 and 2003 NCAA Tournaments … 11 seasons in the NBA.

2014 John Calipari Coaches' Clinic Set for October 25

The 2014 John Calipari Coaches' Clinic is scheduled for October 25 the Joe Craft Center.

Here are details from UK:

LEXINGTON, Ky. – The 2014 John Calipari Coaches’ Clinic has been set for Oct. 25 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Joe Craft Center. Last year’s clinic was sold out, so early registration is encouraged to reserve a spot.

The day-long event, intended for male and female coaches, gives a unique look into the coaching philosophies and strategies that Coach Cal uses in guiding the eight-time national championship basketball program at Kentucky. Included in this year’s clinic will be a chance to tour the Joe Craft Center and the training facilities used by the Wildcats, with staff members available to answer questions.

Attendees will be given exclusive access to watch Calipari and his staff conduct two practice sessions with the 2014-15 Wildcats. There will be opportunities to ask questions of Coach Cal and his staff after the practices.

The cost of the clinic is $100. Registration will close on Oct. 22, so please secure your spot for this year’s clinic early.

Check-in for the 2014 Coaches’ Clinic will be from 7:30 to 9 a.m. in the lobby of the Joe Craft Center.

Parking will be available only in the E lot located on the north side of the Joe Craft Center. Attendees must park in a legal parking spot in the E lots only (parking in R lots is not permitted).

Please note that participants of recruiting age (males or females currently in the 7th-12th grade, junior college or prep school) are not permitted to register for or attend the clinic.

Registration is available online and any clinic related questions can be called into the men’s basketball camp line at 859-257-9457 or 859-257-1916.

SCHEDULE (SUBJECT TO CHANGE)

Time - Activity
7:30 – 9 a.m. Check-in/registration
9 – 9:15 a.m. Welcome/Coach Cal introduction
9:15 – 9:30 a.m. Pre-practice warm-up/stretch
9:30 – 11:30 a.m. Practice
11:30 a.m. – noon Q&A with Coach Calipari and staff
Noon – 1:30 p.m. Lunch (on your own)/facilities will be open for tour
1:30 – 3 p.m. UK assistant coaches speaking presentations
3 – 5 p.m. Practice
5 p.m. Q&A with Coach Calipari and staff/closing remarks

*camp schedule subject to change

John Calipari Coaches’ Clinic

Date: Oct. 25, 2014
Time: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. (lunch on your own)
Check-in: 7:30 a.m. – 9 a.m.
Location: Joe Craft Center (338 Lexington Ave.)
Cost: $100 (registration will close on Oct. 22)

Karl Towns on Missing Basketball World Cup: I'm a student-athlete first

Kentucky freshman Karl Towns posted a brief statement on Twitter moments ago about having to miss the FIBA Basketball World Cup:


Murray State Racers Do the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

The Murray State Racers and head coach Steve Prohm have completed the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.



From MSU:

Murray State head men's basketball coach Steve Prohm, along with his team and Murray-Calloway County Parks Director Tab Brockman, took the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. A hot and steamy afternoon at Roy Stewart Stadium greeted the participants in Murray, Ky. Prohm, who was challenged by Murray State football coach Chris Hatcher, answered the challenge and issued some of his own.

Prohm challenged all of the Ohio Valley Conference head men's basketball coaches including: Rick Byrd of Belmont, Jeff Neubauer of Eastern Kentucky, Sean Woods of Morehead State, Steve Payne of Tennessee Tech, Dana Ford of Tennessee State, James Green of Jacksonville State, Dickey Nutt of Southeast Missouri, Lennox Forrester of SIUE, Jay Spoonhour of Eastern Illinois, Dave Loos of Austin Peay and UT Martin's Heath Schroyer.

Prohm also challenged Murray State's new president Dr. Bob Davies. "I want to encourage all of western Kentucky and this part of the state to get behind the fight against ALS. Make sure to support the ALS Walk at the CFSB Center on Sep. 20."

Complete Release

UK Prevents Karl Towns from Playing for Dominican Republic in World Cup

According to the Dominican Republic national team's official Twitter account, the University of Kentucky has decided that Karl Towns can not play for the Dominican Republic in the upcoming basketball World Cup.



That translates into: "Karl Towns shall not accompany the team to Spain. He spoke with @UKAthletics and can not make the trip. More details in a few moments."

Towns will still be playing for the Dominicans tonight against Team USA in New York City.


Which translates to: "Despite this Towns see action tonight against the United States in a contest scheduled for 7:00 at Madison Square Garden."

2016 UK Recruit Eron Gordon Appeals Ineligibility Ruling in Indiana

Eron Gordon, one of the top players in the Class of 2016, has appealed the Indiana High School Athletic Association's ruling that made him ineligible to play this season.

Gordon, a 6-foot-2 shooting guard, transferred from North Central High School to Cathedral High School. His family contends that the transfer was due to academics but the IHSAA feels it was for athletic reasons.

Here is more from TheIndyChannel.com:

In June 2014, Eron Gordon transferred from North Central High School to Cathedral High School, a decision that prompted the Indiana High School Athletic Association to rule him ineligible to play during the 2014-2015 season.

Gordon, a Junior, appealed the IHSAA's decision Tuesday, but did not testify at the hearing. Instead, his parents spoke on his behalf, attorney Richard Cook said.

"(His parents) put their son's academics first. They saw he was having difficulty. As a result of that, they made the difficult decision to remove him from North Central after his father graduated from there and his brothers have graduated from there," Cook said.

Complete Article

Gordon is already being pursued by such basketball programs as Kentucky, Duke and Kansas.

Juan Palacios is Headed to Turkey for 2014-15

Former Louisville big man Juan Palacios has signed with Pinar Karsiyaka SK Izmir in Turkey's top-level TBL league.

Last season, Palacios played for Lietuvos Rytas in Lithuania. In 26 games, he averaged 14.4 points, 6.7 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 1.5 steals per game.

Here is more from Eurobasket.com:

Pinar Karsiyaka SK Izmir (TBL) agreed terms with 29-year old Colombian power forward Juan Palacios (203-111kg-85). He played previous season at Lietuvos rytas in Lithuanian LKL league. In 26 games he had 14.4ppg, 6.7rpg, 2.1apg and 1.5spg. He helped them to win the regular season and make it to the semifinals. Quite impressive season as he was voted Eurobasket.com All-Lithuanian LKL Import Player of the Year, Center of the Year and named to 1st Team. Palacios also played 8 games in Eurocup where he recorded 14.4ppg, 6.1rpg and 2.9apg.

The previous (12-13) season he played at JSF Nanterre (ProA) in French league. In 22 games he recorded 7.4ppg, 4.6rpg and 1.0apg that season. He contributed to his team winning the league title and they also made it to the cup final.

Read More

Video: Former Morehead State Center Jason Holmes in the Australian Football League

Check out this short film on former Morehead State big man Jason Holmes, who is now a star in the Australian Football League:


Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Terrence Jones Helps Family of Murder Victim

Former Kentucky star Terrence Jones is coming to the aide of the family of a fallen friend.

Ervaeua Herring, a 21-year-old mother of one, was found dead Sunday in Portland. According to reports, Herring was gunned down when multiple suspects fired gun shots into her apartment.

Jones and Herring grew up together.

Here is more from KPTV.com:

Portland native and Houston Rockets forward Terrence Jones grew up with Herring.

On Monday, he brought her family gifts and supplies.

Jones and Herring's family want people to come forward with tips about Herring's killer, but her mother isn't hopeful.

"How would they feel if it was one of their kids? They would want someone to come out and say something. But we all know nobody's going to say anything. They're cowards," she said.

Complete Article

Robert Amis Hired as Assistant Coach at Navarro College

Former Perry County Central player Robert Amis has been hired as an assistant coach at Navarro College in Corsicana, Texas.

Amis, who has built a reputation as a great recruiter, worked last season as an assistant coach at Chipola College. Before that, he served as a graduate assistant at Marshall University and an assistant coach at Trinity Valley Community College.

In high school, Amis was a four-year letterman at Perry Central and was an all-state selection his senior year. Perry Central won three 54th district championships and two 14th region championships with Amis in uniform.

After high school, he played two seasons at UVa.-Wise.

Photo: Marshall University Athletics

Calipari: I wouldn't have left Kentucky for Cleveland even with Lebron James

Kentucky head coach John Calipari says he wouldn't have left UK for Cleveland even with LeBron James.

Here are some recent comments from Calipari when asked about how close he came to leaving:

Calipari said that not even knowing that he'd have arguably the Eastern Conference's most formidable team after James' return to the Cavs in free agency this summer would have changed his mind.

"No. No. I don't think so. Because he and I have a great relationship, but it's not based on me coaching him," Calipari said of James. "We've got a relationship. I've known him for years and years. We've always been friends. But it was never based on that. I've said that. I've had a chance to coach Derrick Rose, John Wall and DeMarcus [Cousins], Anthony Davis and Michael [Kidd-Gilchrist]. And I'm leaving names off, but I've coached some of the best players in basketball, and it is a thrill. There's nothing better than that. Especially when those guys are all good guys.

"Well, LeBron is also that kind of player and that kind of person. But again, leaving guys who made decisions based on what's right for their career was something I couldn't have gotten by anyway."

Read More

Cleveland reportedly offered Calipari almost $80 million over 10 years to coach the Cavaliers.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Nerlens Noel is Ready To Go, Says Rajon Rondo Was the Biggest Helper During His Recovery

Former Kentucky star Nerlens Noel is fully recovered and ready to make an impact for the Philadelphia 76ers.

In a recent interview, Noel credited another former star for playing a huge role in his recovery.

Check out his comments about Rajon Rondo:

When you're working your way back and you have little milestones, like the first time you dunk or the first time you can play with contact, how much do those little moments mean?

Oh, man. Oh my God, those moments are special. At one point, not being able to walk, and then you get to the point where you're able to walk, you're able to jog, then you're running and jumping. I remember the first time I dunked off my left foot, that was the most joy I had since before I got hurt. That's when I knew I really was making a lot of progress. The first few months of my rehab, I was scared to even lightly jump off my left leg. After five months, I started lightly dunking off of it. Those are the things that keep your spirit up and keep your work ethic going, keep you motivated, seeing improvement week after week.

Is it important to you now that you've been through it to talk to other guys if they go down with that same injury?

Oh yeah, yeah. Definitely, definitely. With all the support and love, certain guys, especially Rajon Rondo -- he was definitely the biggest helper through this whole process, he actually gave me his phone number and told me I could hit him up whenever about it. Being from Boston, watching him growing up, and he went through it and he came back as strong as possible, actually before me, so it gave me a lot of confidence, having his good faith.

Is that kind of crazy, being a Celtics fan growing up, to get to know him on a personal level?

Yeah, definitely. That's definitely what made it even more of a thrill. Being able to interact with Rondo and get good advice from him, 'cause he's more of a veteran point guard now in this league, gone through so much with the Big 3, he's a world champion, he's a player who's very mature in this league now. So definitely, it was crazy. I took a lot from him.

Read Complete Interview

Bowling Green Bandits to Hold Tryouts in September

The Bowling Green Bandits, a new ABA team in Kentucky, will be holding tryouts at E.A. Diddle Arena in September.

Here are details:

Ray Kasongo Fails to Qualify for Admission to Indiana

Former East Ridge and Pikeville big man Ray Kasongo is still looking for a college destination after failing to gain admission into Indiana University.



Kasongo originally committed to Oregon but was denied admission into the school.

Video: The Kentucky Wildcats Took a Boating Trip in the Bahamas

The Kentucky Wildcats took a boating trip during their stay in the Bahamas.

Check out this footage from Kentucky Wildcats TV:


Anthony Davis Dazzles for Team USA in Win Over Brazil

Former University of Kentucky star Anthony Davis is quickly becoming Team USA's "go to" guy.

In Saturday's 95-78 win over Brazil, Davis led the way with 20 points, 8 rebounds and 5 blocked shots. His night included several dazzling dunks and one breathtaking moment where he literally jumped into the stands for a loose ball.

Chris Sheridan writes on SheridanHoops.com that Davis is the new Team USA alpha dog.

Here is an excerpt:

Usually, there are very few “Wow” moments in exhibitions, be they NBA games or FIBA games. This one bucked that trend.

Anthony Davis diving into the stands, knocking over two of the hottest female fans in the building? Yeah, that was a “Wow” moment. Davis finishing a couple of fast breaks with rim-rattling slams while running at full speed? Yeah, that too brought out the ‘W’ word.

There were enough “Wow” moments from that young man to leave you saying “Damn” about this version of Team USA, which came out looking awesome and finished looking even more awesome in a 95-78 victory Saturday night against Brazil in which the Americans very much looked like the favorite to win the World Cup, which they are.

Going into this game, you didn’t quite know what you were going to get, especially after the losses of Kevin Durant and Paul George. Coming out of it, we now know what we are going to get: A whole lot of Anthony Davis, whose youthful athleticism was infectious to the entire American team in their first game of the 2014 summer.

Complete Article






Christen Cunningham Scores 12 in Exhibition Debut with Samford

Former Henry Clay and Cordia star Christen Cunningham scored 12 points on Sunday in his freshman debut with Samford University.

Sophomore Nnamdi Enechionyia (say that three times really fast) scored 14 points to lead Samford to a 95-62 exhibition win over the Real Deal Shockers.

Samford, which is coached by former University of Kentucky star Scott Padgett, will have two more games in the Bahamas.

Here's their remaining schedule:

Aug. 18 vs. Atlantis All‐Stars 7 p.m.
Aug. 19 vs. Commonwealth Giants 9 p.m.

‐ All games can we watched Live via the following Web address: btcsot.sportingpulse.net.

John Calipari Discusses Loss to the Dominican Republic

Kentucky head coach John Calipari discusses Sunday's loss to the Dominican Republic in the Bahamas:


Sluggish Kentucky Drops Final Game in the Bahamas

Dominican Republic 63
Kentucky 62

Exhibition Final from the Bahamas




Veteran big man Jack Michael Martinez nailed a crafty fade away jumper with just over two seconds remaining to give the Dominican Republic national team a 63-62 victory over Kentucky in the Bahamas on Sunday.

For Kentucky, the real story was six games in eight days. The Wildcats appeared a step slow throughout the game and the Dominicans took advantage late in the second half.

Victor Liz led the Dominican Republic with 15 points. Martinez added 10 points, 6 rebounds and 3 assists. Former Kentucky big man Eloy Vargas chipped in 4 points, 6 rebounds and 3 assists.

Tyler Ulis finished with 12 points and a game-high 5 assists for Kentucky. Derek Willis and Karl Towns each added 10 points. Dakari Johnson contributed 5 points and 9 rebounds.

Kentucky finished their exhibition week in the Dominican Republic with an impressive 5-1 record.

Box Score (click to enlarge):

Friday, August 15, 2014

Eloy Vargas Talks About Playing Against Kentucky in the Bahamas

Former Kentucky big man Eloy Vargas, who plays for the Dominican Republic, talks about the opportunity to play his former team today in the Bahamas:



* Video by Kentucky.com on YouTube

Former Murray State Center Tony Easley is Headed to Israel

Former Murray State big man Tony Easley has agreed to terms with Ironi New-Ziona in Israel's top-level Winner League.

Easley will be teaming up with former Louisville guard Preston Knowles.

Last season, Easley played for JuveCaserta  and Umana Venezia in Italy's SerieA league. In 15 games with JuveCaserta, he averaged 7.2 points and 5.6 rebounds per game. In 15 games with Umana Venezia, he put in 7.8 points and 4.1 boards.

Here is more from Eurobasket.com:

Ironi Nes-Ziona (Winner League) agreed terms with 27-year old American power forward Tony Easley (206-90kg-87, college: Murray State). He played previous season at JuveCaserta in Italian Serie A. In 15 games he had 7.2ppg and 5.6rpg. Easley also played at Umana Venezia (Serie A) in Italy that season. In 15 games he recorded 7.8ppg and 4.1rpg previous season.

The previous (12-13) season he played at Banco di Srd (Serie A) in Italian league. In 34 games he recorded 11.4ppg and 5.6rpg. He helped them to end the regular season as a second best team in the league. Easley also played 6 games in Eurocup where he recorded 10.7ppg and 6.5rpg.

Read More

James Young Wants to Dunk on LeBron James

NBA rookies were recently asked who they most want to dunk on in the league.

Former Kentucky player Julius Randle said "Kobe," which can't really happen outside of practice.

Randle's former UK teammate, James Young, went another direction and said he wants to throw down on LeBron James:


Orlando Antigua Previews Kentucky vs. Dominican Republic

Dominican Republic head coach Orlando Antigua talks about today's game against the Kentucky Wildcats:



* Video by Kentucky.com on YouTube

Thursday, August 14, 2014

UK Basketball Gives Back to Kids in the Bahamas

The Kentucky Wildcats didn't have a game in the Bahamas yesterday but they used a portion of their day off to give back to children.

Watch as the team and coaches wash feet and provide footwear to needy kids through Samaritan's Feet:


Hum Diddy Diddy: John Calipari Has a Big Idea

Kentucky head coach John Calipari says he has one of his best ideas yet. When one considers all that Calipari has done during his tenure at Kentucky, this idea must be something good.

Here is a post from Calipari on Facebook earlier today:

John Calipari

When I get time to myself, you know I can’t help but think. Well, I’ve come up with one of my best ideas yet. It's crazy, ridiculous. Hum diddy diddy. BUT, I'm not going to tell you until it's ready to be executed. When I put it together, you’ll say, “That was the idea he was talking about.”

Mark Emmert and the NCAA just moved to DEFCON 2.

Statewide Poll Shows Rick Pitino Has Higher Approval Rating Than John Calipari

A statewide poll conducted by Public Policy Polling indicates that Louisville head coach Rick Pitino has a slightly higher approval rating than Kentucky head man John Calipari.

According to the poll of 991 Kentucky voters, Pitino's approval rating is 89% while Calipari's is 86%. Only 3% disapprove of what Calipari has done at Kentucky while 5% disapprove of Pitino. Additionlly, 11% are not sure about Calipari while 6% are not sure about Pitino.

Of those surveyed, 64% consider themselves to be Kentucky fans while 20% identified themselves as Louisville fans. Amazingly, 16% are not sure who they support.

Complete Poll

Augusta's Brent Bach Officially Signs with Bellarmine University

Augusta High School star Brent Bach has signed with Bellarmine University for 2014-15.

Bach is Augusta's all-time leading scorer with 2,615 career points.

Here is a release from BU:

LOUISVILLE, Ky.—Bellarmine University's men's basketball team signed a key member of its 2014 recruiting class today, when Coach Scott Davenport announced that Augusta (Ky.) High School star Brent Bach will join the Knights this season.

Bach, a sharpshooting 6-1 guard, was one of the top scorers in the state this past season, averaging 31.2 points per game for the Panthers while finishing his career as Augusta's all-time leading scorer with 2,615 points. He was named the 10th Region Player of the Year, picked up 2nd Team All-State honors, and was a McDonald's All-American candidate among a slew of other accolades.

"We are extremely excited to have a tremendous winner like Brent in our program," said Davenport. "He took Augusta High School to championship level basketball against great competition. When you study Brent as a player, he is all about team and team performance. He elevated the play of his teammates to a very high level.

"Brent has a great love for the game, a skill that all great players possess. He is a great get for our program!" Davenport added.

Bach, who had interest from at least 10 different Division I schools, said he thought Bellarmine was a great fit. "Coach Davenport is a great coach and his assistant coaches showed a lot of interest and are really good at what they do. I feel that the way they play is the way I play. I'm just thankful for the opportunity to come be a part of the team and try to bring home another national championship."

"Coming from a small school, having the opportunity to play for a championship is something I'm really excited about," he said. "I want to improve my game, but I know I have a long way to go. I have to get bigger and work on my passing. I know there are several really good big guys on the team, and I want to be able work with them and make them happy, too."

Complete Release

Photo: Bellarmine athletics

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