Saturday, November 21, 2009

Morehead State vs. UL-Monroe - Live Coverage reported live from this game

Morehead State Starting Lineups:

G Terrance Hill 6-1 So.
G Brandon Shingles 6-3 Sr.
G Sam Goodman 6-2 Jr.
F Steve Peterson 6-5 So.
F Kenneth Faried 6-8 Jr.

First Half Notes:

UL-Monroe is a very long and athletic mid-major squad. That type of team has been very difficult for OVC teams in the recent past, but Morehead State now has the athletes to matchup with that kind of team.

Morehead State opened the game with a quick 9-2 run. The Eagles opened with a very aggressive full-court pressure defense that seemed to surprise the Warhawks out of the gate. The downside was that Demonte Harper and Brandon Shingles each picked up two fouls before the first media timeout.

Morehead State picked up 7 fouls in the first 5:13 of game time. Morehead State head coach Donnie Tyndall made the decision to bring Harper and Shingles back in the game with two fouls each at the 12:50 mark of the first half.

UL-Monroe switched to a three-quarter court zone press after the first media timeout, which has caused the Eagles to pick up a couple of turnovers. The press helped the Warhawks cut the lead to 15-12 at the second media timeout.

The Warhawks cut the Eagle lead to 22-20 at the under 8:00 media timeout, but the Eagles extended it back out to four after a Faried offensive rebound and put back. UL-Monroe quickly answered with a 3-pointer to cut the lead to one.

Ty Proffitt and Maze Stallworth drained consecutive 3-pointers to give the Eagles a 32-24 lead, forcing the Warhawks to call a timeout a the 3:48 mark of the first half. UL-Monroe answered with a long range bomb of their own to cut the lead to 32-27 at the final media timeout of the first half.

Harper and Shingles both picked up their third foul in the first half, which limited Morehead's ball-handling ability and defensive pressure. UL-Monroe was able to take a 36-35 lead late in the first half on a three-point play. Morehead State could not score on the last possession of the first half. Halftime Score: UL-Monroe 36 Morehead State 35

Second Half Notes:

Kenneth Faried opened the second half up with a driving layup to put the Eagles back up by a point. After trading baskets several times early, Faried and Turner had a brief altercation under the basket that seemed to raise the level of intensity for both teams. The Warhawks extended out to a 46-41 lead at the first media timeout.

Back-to-back dunks by Faried tied the game at 49-49 with a little over 14:00 remaining. UL-Monroe quickly regained a one-point advantage with a free throw.

The Warhawks managed to extend out to a 7-point lead at 59-52, but Morehead would not allow them to get away. A 3-pointer by Les Simmons triggered a quick 5-0 run for the Eagles to cut the lead to two at the second media timeout. With 10:30 showing on the clock, UL-Monroe led 59-57.

At the 9:13 mark, Brandon Shingles went to the line for an opportunity to tie the game, but he only made one of two. He atoned for the missed free throw with a layup to give the Eagles a 62-61 lead with 8:44 remaining.

The game was again tied at the under 8:00 timeout. With 7:55 on the clock, the score stood at 63-63.

An explosive rebound dunk by Faried gave the Eagles a 67-65 lead with just over 6:00 remaining, but the Warhawks answered with a long range jumper on the other end. After an Eagle miss, UL-Monroe hit a free throw and a layup to retake the lead at 70-67. That was the score at the final media timeout.

Kenneth Faried hit two free throws after the break to make it a one-point Morehead State deficit. A Demonte Harper jumper at 1:55 gave Morehead State a 73-72 lead. The Eagles called a timeout with possession at the 1:18 mark.

After the timeout, Morehead drained the shot clock, missed and then grabbed an offensive rebound. The Eagles called a timeout with 33.8 remaining and 20 seconds on the shot clock.

After the timeout, Faried was called for a travelling violation. UL-Monroe called timeout with 16.8 on the clock and possession, trailing the Eagles 73-72.

Tony Cooper nailed an off-balance jumper with 0.7 on the clock to give UL-Monroe a 74-73 victory. Final Score: UL-Monroe 74 Morehead State 73

Game Notes:

- This was the best basketball game I've watched in person in a long while; the intensity and execution were both there; the only thing lacking was the officiating crew
- The attendance at Morehead State is up this season following last season's run to the NCAA Tournament. The majority of the lower level is filled with MSU fans, which is a big step up from the days of 200-250 fans
- I knew this already, but it's worth repeating - Johnson Arena is a first class facility
- The transition that the MSU program has underwent is phenomenal; the program is now ran like an NCAA Division I program; AD Brian Hutchinson and head coach Donnie Tyndall get an A+ from me
- It is always a pleasure to watch Kenneth Faried compete for the Eagles; he gives 110% every game (and every practice from what I'm told)

Campbellsville Drops Second Ranked Team in 4 Days

Campbellsville 90
Freed-Hardeman 80

Final from Campbellsville, Kentucky

Game Recap from Campbellsville:

Campbellsville University led practically the entire game against No. 18 Freed-Hardeman University, but had to work an extra five minutes to gain a 90-80 overtime victory Saturday in the Powell Athletic Center.

After a Jesse Moulton three tied the score at the in regulation, the Tigers went on an 18-8 run to close out the game. The run was punctuated by 11-13 free throw shooting (eight by Jermaine Carter) that sealed the win.

"This was a good win for us," said a relieved head coach Keith Adkins. "You've got to look at ranked teams as opportunities."

Freed-Hardeman was the second straight Trans-South Conference opponent to go down to the Tigers. They defeated Union University on Tuesday in Jackson, Tenn.

"This was a good team we beat. They were 5-0 and had beaten Lindsey Wilson, a team from our conference" said Adkins.

Campbellsville led by as many as 16 points on three occasions in the first half but relinquished that and led only 41-35 at the break.

"Sometimes I think we take things for granted," said Adkins. "They got in foul trouble and started subbing and I think we let up a little."

Freed took a 44-43 lead four minutes into the second half, but that is the last time Campbellsville trailed.

The Tigers were led by Nestor Colmenares' 25 points and 14 rebounds. He was joined in double figures by Jermaine Carter, T.J. Bishop and Jordan Benock with 14, 13 and 11 points, respectively. All of Bishop's points came in the second half.

"T.J. came up big for us at Union and Jermaine did tonight," Adkins said. "Your upper classmen are expected to step up like that."

Freed-Hardeman was led by Kyle Teichman's 25 points. Ken Bingham had 17 and Kirtiss Brown 10.
Campbellsville goes on the road for a Tuesday match-up in Portsmouth, Ohio against future Mid-South opponent Shawnee State.

Louisville Holds On to Defeat East Tennessee State

Louisville 69
East Tennessee State 56

Final from Louisville, Kentucky

Game Recap from the Associated Press:

Rick Pitino and the Louisville Cardinals have a lot to work on.

Edgar Sosa scored 13 of his 16 points in the first half and Louisville (No. 22 ESPN/USA Today, No. 20 AP) beat East Tennessee State 69-56 on Saturday.

The Cardinals won despite shooting just 36.4 percent, including just 6 of 30 from beyond the 3-point line. Louisville used an 18-0 run in the first half to turn a three-point deficit into a 25-10 lead.

"We took a lot of challenged shots," Pitino said.

Sosa was one of the few Louisville players to shoot well in the first half. He only missed one of his five shots, including hitting four 3-pointers. The rest of the Cardinals were just 8-for-26 before the break.

Louisville (2-0) also played most of the first half without Samardo Samuels, who committed two fouls in the first seven minutes. While he finished with 14 points and 11 rebounds, Pitino thought the sophomore center and his teammates could have performed better on the boards. Both teams grabbed 44 rebounds, but the Buccaneers had a 30-19 edge in the second half.

"I'm not pleased with anybody rebounding the baskeball," Pitino said.

Justin Tubbs led the Buccaneers (1-3) with 18 points and Micah Williams added 12. ETSU was without senior Mike Smith, who averaged 15.3 points and 7.7 rebounds last season for the Atlantic Sun conference tournament champions.

"I'm not pleased losing, but obviously for our team it was a step up," ETSU coach Murry Bartows said.

The game served as the home opener for Louisville and the final one at Freedom Hall, Louisville's home court since 1956. Louisville, which was the last ranked team to start the season, started a stretch of three home games in as many days, as part of the Hall of Fame Showcase.

Freedom Halls lack of availability, especially early in the season, is one of the reasons why Louisville will open next season in a new arena, currently under construction in the citys downtown

Bellarmine Loses Tough Game to Wayne State

Wayne State 84
Bellarmine 74

Final from Detroit, Michigan

Game Recap from Bellarmine:

The Bellarmine University men's basketball team suffered the season's first loss today, falling 84-74 in double overtime to Wayne State University.

"It was a tough loss, because of our poor execution," said Bellarmine Head Coach Scott Davenport. "(Wayne State) is a good team and a tough road opponent. The stat of the game is that they shot 58 percent in the second half and two overtimes."

The Warriors (1-1) were a two-headed monster today as Bryan Wright and Bryan Smothers combined for 55 of Wayne State's 84 points. Wright made 11 of 21 field goals attempts including 4 of 8 from beyond the arc on his way to a 29 point performance. Smothers, meanwhile, hit seven of 12 shots and was 10 of 12 from the line for his 26 points.

Bellarmine (2-1) placed four players in double figures led by Justin Benedetti with 18 while Nick Holmes added 17 and Braydon Hobbs contributed 13.

Complete Game Recap

Asbury Defeats Temple Baptist Bible College

Asbury College 90
Temple Baptist Bible 79

Final from Wilmore, Kentucky

Game Recap from Asbury:

Asbury jumped out to a commanding 50-34 lead at halftime and cruised to a 90-79 victory over Temple Baptist Bible College. The Eagles shot 47% from the floor and caused the Rams to turn the ball over 22 times.

Phillip Morrison (Louisville, Ky.) continued his hot start to the season with 34 points, his second game with more than 30 points and sixth of more than 20. Morrison hit 14-of-23 shots including two-of-six from three, he was a perfect four-of-four from the line. He also had a team high four steals.

Three other Eagles were in double figures as Brian Johnson (Wilmore, Ky.) scored 15, Justin Jones (Hazard, Ky.) had 11, and Brock Hurtle (North Vernon, Ind.) came off the bench to score 11. Johnson had a game high 12 rebounds and six assists. Hurtle hit his first three three’s of the game. Jones added eight rebounds and one block.

The Eagles will return to action on Monday November 23rd to host The Crown College at 6:00 pm before taking off for Thanksgiving. The women will follow the men on Monday at 8:00 pm.
Released 11/21/2009

Kentucky vs. Rider - Game Pictures

Ramon Harris in pre-game

DeAndre Liggins and Darnell Dodson enjoying the game from the bench

Cousins explains his side of the story; Calipari says "no thanks"

Coach Calipari was in a little better mood after today's game

Rider head coach Tommy Dempsey

All Access: Almost Gametime at Cameron Indoor Stadium is going to give you an All-Access pass into the locker room of a good mid-major team as it prepares for a game at Cameron Indoor Stadium against the powerful Duke Blue Devils. I will be talking to Radford University freshman guard Evan Faulkner, a Kentucky kid that played high school basketball for the Elliott County Lions. Radford will battle Duke today at 3:00 p.m.

- Evan Faulkner has started the first two games for the Highlanders (2-0). He is averaging 32.5 minutes per game and is tied for the team lead with 7 assists. He is averaging 4.0 points per game.

- The Radford Highlanders are an NCAA Division I basketball program that competes in the Big South Conference (Kentucky fans may recall that Gardner-Webb competes in the Big South Conference). The Highlanders are coming off a winning season and are expected to compete for the Big South championship in 2009-10. The university sits just off of I-81 in southwestern Virginia (near Blacksburg).

Almost Gametime:

The Highlanders had a shootaround at Cameron Indoor Arena from 9:30-10:30 this morning. I talked to Evan afterwards and asked him his initial thoughts on the legendary facility:

"Honestly, it's quite a bit bigger than I expected. It was just obvious as soon I walked onto the court that it is a lot better than I thought. The bottom level is right on the floor. You can't tell from watching on television how close it actually is. We know they're going to be right in our face the full forty minutes."

I asked him how he shot in practice this morning:

"I was a little surprised how loose the rims are. They give up a lot of rolls. If you can get it up on the rim, it has a good chance of going in."

Any last second-preparations this morning?

"We basically got our shots up and just went over some of their stuff."

Any thoughts on Duke?

"As a team, we know they're ultra aggressive defensively. We going to try to stick to our gameplan and if we do, we feel that we have a chance to compete. We're a great team."

I asked Evan if they had any interaction with the Duke players or coaches this morning:

"We did not have any interaction. We showed up at the arena already dressed and ready to go and we went straight to the floor for the shootaround."

What's the schedule before the game?

"We're back at the motel right now. We will get taped and leave for the game at around 1:15."

I'll be talking to Evan after the game to get an inside look at the experience of playing the Duke Blue Devils in Durham.

Kentucky vs. Rider - Live Basketball Coverage

* is reporting live from Rupp Arena...

- Game is about 2 minutes away
- Game set to begin; Cats will go with Cousins, Patterson, Wall, Miller, Bledsoe
- Wall opens with a missed 3-pointer; Rider scores on the other end; 2-0 Rider
- Kentucky gets a shotclock violation on their second possession
- Rider calls an early 30-second timeout to make an adjustment
- Cousins opens the scoring for the Cats; 4-2 Rider
- Patterson with a putback ties the game at 4-4
- Kentucky still giving up open looks from long range; luckily Rider is 0-3
- Terrible call gives Cousins his 2nd foul at the 17:10 mark; he heads to the bench
- Officials are way off base early; a 2nd consecutive absolutely ridiculous call
- John Wall just pulled out an amazing move on the break; Rupp Arena is rocking
- 15:07 first half; timeout on the floor; UK 10 Rider 6
- Patterson scores and gets fouled in the paint; free throw is good; UK 13 Rider 8
- This is the best John Wall has looked this season; he is killing the Broncs on the break
- Wall with the 3-point play to put UK up 16-8
- Kentucky defense has now tightened up; Rider can't get a shot off at the moment
- Daniel Orton lays it in down low and draws the foul; FT is no good; UK leads 18-10
- Rider found a way to stop Wall on the break - they just tackled him
- 11:45 first half; timeout on the floor; UK 18 Rider 10
- Just a thought: the Cancun Challenge logo is terrible; how about an upgrade?
- The officials with a 3rd blown call against Kentucky in the first 9 minutes; crowd is upset
- Eric Bledsoe drains a good-looking 3-pointer to make it 22-12 UK
- Kentucky is now in a full-court man-to-man press
- Orton nails a nice free throw line jumper UK up 24-14
- Wall just had his second SportsCenter Top 10 play in the first half; ouch
- Wall now with 10 points; he gets a breather as Hood enters the game
- Timeout Rider; Kentucky is up to a 29-14 lead at the 7:52 point
- 7:42 first half; timeout on the floor; UK 29 Rider 14
- Kentucky has now played 10 players in the first half
- In 12 minutes, John Wall has 10 points and 5 assists
- Orton is playing well today; he already has 10 points and looks solid on the post
- Kentucky leads 33-18; Wall back in the game
- Wall makes an impact immediately as he speeds coast-to-coast for an easy layup
- Patterson with the dunk off an Orton feed; Cats looking really good on offense
- Patterson has a double-double already with 10 and 10
- 3:52 first half; timeout on the floor; UK 39 Rider 22
- Harrellson gets in and hits a nice turn-around jumper in the lane; 41-24 Kentucky
- Harrellson follows it up with a blocked shot and then goes the length to get fouled; hits both
- Bledsoe nails an open 3-pointer; Cats pulling away a bit; now 43-24
- Loud chants of "Harrellson, Harrellson..." as he leaves the game
- Bledsoe drains an NBA 3-pointer to put UK up 49-24
- Rupp Arena is erupting as Patterson gets a dunk to put UK up 51-26
- Kentucky calls a timeout with 24.2 remaining in the half to setup a play
- Believe it or not: Rider is 0-9 from long range in this game for a big 0%
- Halftime: Kentucky 51 Rider 26
- Miller opens the 2nd half with a 3-pointer but Rider answers on the other end
- Rider hits another 3-pointer; Calipari immediately calls a timeout to resend the message
- 17:49; UK calls timeout; UK 56 Rider 34
- Cousins back in the game for the first time since he picked up his 2nd foul
- Wall with another blazing drive to hit the bucket and draw the foul; he now has 15 points
- 15:49 second half; timeout on the floor; UK 61 Rider 37
- Some great dancing on the "boogie cam" during the timeout
- Wall is a human highlight film today
- Nice spin move for Cousins on the post; 4 in a row for DeMarcus
- Cats are really taking it to Rider at the moment
- Timeout Rider: UK 69 Rider 42 with 13:51 remaining
- Wall joins Patterson with a double-double; he has 17 points and 10 assists
- Cousins gets into an altercation going after a loose ball; he is replaced by Orton
- Wall has incredible court vision
- Just another terrible call against Kentucky; Rupp is booing loudly
- 11:59 second half; timeout on the floor; UK 69 Rider 44
- Wall with another unbelievable bucket; he's fouled; 74-46 UK
- Just a note: still no Dodson...still no Liggins
- Oh yeah, I heard a Rupp Arena employee at the half state, "John Wall doesn't seem as fast as everyone said he was..." Really?
- Cousins reaches double digits with his 10th point...
- 7:53 second half; timeout on the floor; UK 80 Rider 50
- Patterson looks like an All-American today; 19 points and 18 rebounds; UK leads 81-52
- Nice dunk by Rider to make it 82-55
- Wall now has 21 points, 10 assists and 6 rebounds
- Cousins with a putback to make it 86-55
- 3:43 first half; timeout on the floor; UK 86 Rider 55
- Cousins with the big block; sends it to the first row; UK 88 Rider 55
- Cousins goes to the line for 2 shots; makes one
- Mark Krebs checks in for Eric Bledsoe
- Orton fouled on a dunk attempt; he goes to the line for 2 FT's; makes both; UK 91 Rider 57
- Cousins smiling after he almost shoots an airball from the line
- Crowd is really wanting to see Krebs score
- Final: Kentucky 92 Rider 63

Kentucky Hopes to Tighten Defense Against Rider

Rider (2-1) vs. Kentucky (3-0)

2009 Cancun Challenge at Lexington Kentucky

NOTE: will be covering this event live from Rupp Arena

Game Notes: UK Notes Rider Notes
Date & Time: Today, 1:00 p.m
Location: Rupp Arena, Lexington

TV: Live on FS South; delayed BBSN (coverage details)
Radio: BBSNGameTracker Online Audio Online Video via ESPN360 Live Blog

Game Preview from

Kentucky hosts Rider in the final round of the campus-portion of the Cancun Challenge. The Wildcats enter the game on a three-game winning streak, including an exciting 102-92 win over Sam Houston State on Thursday.

For the third straight game, UK was led in scoring by a freshman, this time DeMarcus Cousins did the honors with a team-high 27 points to go along with a game-high 18 rebounds. It was Cousins second straight double-double. Freshman John Wall and junior Patrick Patterson joined Cousins win the 20-point club while Eric Bledsoe and Darius Miller also scored in double-digits.

The Wildcats also hit a season-best 11 three-pointers.

Asbury College Holds Off Southern Virginia

Asbury College 87
Southern Virginia 84

Final from Wilmore, Kentucky

Game recap from Asbury:

Asbury held off Southern Virginia 87-84 in a fast paced, back and forth game in the second game of the Christian College Classic on Friday night in the Luce Center. There were nine ties and 18 lead changes in game, with the final one coming as Adam Delph (Louisville, Ky.) hit a free throw with 3:53 remaining.

Phillip Morrison (Louisville, Ky.) led the Eagles for the sixth time in seven games with 27 points. This is the fifth time Morrison has scored more than 20 points. He was nine-of-14 from the floor and eight-of- nine from the free throw line including a perfect four-of-four down the stretch to preserve the win. Cory Britt (Cynthiana, Ky.) scored 17 and Delph added 16.

Asbury (5-2) came into the game only shooting only 60% from the free throw line but hit on 19-of-26 (73%) on Friday night. The Eagles shot 51% from the floor and 35% (8-23) from three. Southern Virginia went to the line 22 times and hit on 15. They shot 46% from the floor and connected on seven-of-23 from beyond
the three point line.

Justin Jones (Hazard, Ky.) had two big dunks in the opening minutes and then several big blocks later in the first half. The freshman forward finished the game with six points, a team high seven rebounds, five blocks, and four steals.

Cory Evans led Southern Virginia (3-2) with 27 points and a team high eight rebounds, and Ade Swann had 13 points and 10 assists.

Cincinnati Christian beat Temple Baptist in the first game of the Christian College Classic 110-80. CCU will play Southern Virginia at 2:00 pm on Saturday and Asbury will take on the Rams from Temple Baptist.

Friday, November 20, 2009

All Access: Behind the Scenes at Cameron Indoor Stadium is going to give you an All-Access pass into the locker room of a good mid-major team as it prepares for a game at Cameron Indoor Stadium against the powerful Duke Blue Devils. I will be talking to Radford University freshman guard Evan Faulkner, a Kentucky kid that played high school basketball for the Elliott County Lions. Radford will battle Duke tomorrow at 3:00 p.m.

- Evan Faulkner has started the first two games for the Highlanders (2-0). He is averaging 32.5 minutes per game and is tied for the team lead with 7 assists. He is averaging 4.0 points per game.

- The Radford Highlanders are an NCAA Division I basketball program that competes in the Big South Conference (Kentucky fans may recall that Gardner-Webb competes in the Big South Conference). The Highlanders are coming off a winning season and are expected to compete for the Big South championship in 2009-10. The university sits just off of I-81 in southwestern Virginia (near Blacksburg).

Friday: Preparation and the journey to Durham

I asked Evan to take me through the day today and the team's preparation for their trip to Duke.

"We started at about 2:30 today with practice. It was a pretty normal practice, although it was shortened a bit. We had the normal level of intensity and everyone was focused and practiced hard."

On preparing for Duke:

"We've watched film on Duke the last two days. We want to limit the shots of Scheyer and Singler. We'll play a whole lot of zone defense and try to limit them. We will try to make someone else step up and beat us and if that happens, we'll live with it."

After practice:

"After practice, we had a team meal and then we left for Durham at around 5:30. I think it's probably a 3-4 hour bus ride for us."

I asked Evan how the team feels in general as they prepare to play at Cameron Indoor Stadium:

"You know, we have a lot of experienced guys. We're going into Cameron and everyone knows about it. We know what we're getting into and our guys have experience. They played against North Carolina last season so they know about this level of play."

"We feel like we're a good basketball team. We're confident."

The Highlanders are dealing with a bit of adversity:

"We are missing one of our top players which is Lazar Trifunovic, but don't ask me how to spell that." (I looked it up on ESPN)

How does Evan expect things to go:

"I really feel that if we handle the things that we can control, we'll be competitive. Things like hustle, execution and effort. We're not going in there to take a 30-40 point butt-kicking. We feel like we're going to try to win."

Plans upon arrival:

"We'll get checked into our motel tonight and relax a little. There will be a shoot around tomorrow morning, but they haven't told us the time, yet."

Radford (2-0) @ Duke (3-0)

When: Tomorrow; 3:00 p.m.
Where: Cameron Indoor Stadium, Durham, North Carolina

Next Update: Tomorrow before the game

Murray State Basketball Wins Tournament Game

Murray State 71
James Madison 43

Final from Coaches vs. Cancer Classic in Miami

Game Recap from Murray State:

The Murray State Racers posted a win Friday in the Coaches vs Cancer Classic over James Madison by a 71-43 score at US Century Bank Arena in Miami, Fla.

The Racers produced a great start to the game when they bolted to a 19-8 advantage at the 12:51 mark when Tony Easley finished a fast break with a ringing slam dunk.

After the initial burst, the Racers had another good burst at the end of the half when Easley scored inside before Danero Thomas hit a jumper at the buzzer of the half for a 36-17 MSU lead.

Easley led the MSU attack with a big day of 15 points and six rebounds in the first half alone.

After JMU cut the MSU lead to 47-32 with 12:06 left in the game, the Racers had a 9-0 run to push ahead by 24 points with at 8:15.

The Racers cruised the rest of the way in improving their mark to 2-1 this season, while JMU fell to 0-2.

Easley tallied his sixth career double-double with 18 points and 10 rebounds as he also had five blocked shots.

Danero Thomas and Isaiah Canaan each added 12 to the Racers offensive attack.

MSU held the Dukes to 28 percent shooting in the game and made up for their 38 percent clip by hitting 22-of-33 from the free throw line for 70 percent.

The Racers also led the rebounding stat with a 53-32 advantage.

After an off day here in Miami, Fla., on Saturday, the Racers return to the court at FIU Sunday against North Carolina Central at 7 p.m. central time after FIU takes on JMU in the first game at 5 p.m.

MSU finishes the Coaches vs Cancer Classic with a Monday 6 p.m. tip against the host Panthers.

Morehead State Adds Talented JUCO Forward

"Romaric Lasme is a skilled, long and athletic post player that could start from day one."

- Donnie Tyndall, Morehead State Head Coach

Announcement from

Morehead State men’s basketball coach Donnie Tyndall has announced that Romaric Lasme has signed a National Letter of Intent with Eagle men’s basketball.

Lasme is a 6-7, 220-pound forward transfer from Laramie County Community College in Cheyenne, Wy. A native of Port-Gentil, Gabon, Lasme is averaging 18.5 points and eight rebounds for the Golden Eagles this season.

“Romeric is a very good athlete and a skilled post player,” Tyndall said. “We weren’t sure whether or not he would sign early, but we are extremely glad to have him in our family,”

Lasme joins five other early Eagle signees. P.J. Meyers (5-7, 165 lbs., G, Augusta, Ga. – Chattanooga State Community College); Shannon Williams (6-8, 225 lbs., F, Detroit, MI – Cass Tech High School); Arthur McMillan (6-5, 220 lbs., F, Nashville, TN – Hillsboro High School); Robert Wade (6-7, 210 lbs., F, Nashville, TN – Maplewood High School); Kevin Gray (6-1, 180 lbs., G, Reynoldsburg, OH – Reynoldsburg High School) have also signed with Morehead State.

MSU is 1-1 so far this season and will host Louisiana Monroe Saturday at 7:30 pm at Johnson Arena.

Thomas More Basketball Defeats Otterbein College

Thomas More 84
Otterbein 70

Final from Case Western Reserve University Tip-Off Tournament

The Thomas More Saints (2-0) pulled away in the second half to earn the 84-70 victory over Otterbein College. The game was part of the Case Western Reserve University Tip-Off Tournament.

Brian Muse led the Saints with 20 points on 9-12 shooting. Daniel McKeehan added a double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds. Daniel Whelan and Kurt Bovard contributed 12 and 11, respectively.

Cory Ratai led Otterbein with 19 points on 7-7 shooting.

Thomas More will return to action tomorrow night at 7:00 p.m. against the winner of Case Western Reserve and Washington & Lee University.

Box Score

Quotes from Kentucky Head Coach John Calipari

Comments by Kentucky head coach John Calipari at today's practice

On the game against Sam Houston State:

“We had no sense of urgency defensively. There was absolutely no communication on the court, which makes it hard. We stopped playing as much as any team I’ve ever coached. We just stopped. But, I’ve never coached a team where we play five freshmen, two sophomores and a junior. I’ve never coached a team this young. Our offense didn’t take any bad shots. John Wall missed some layups, but they were good shots. I took a look at (on film) John and Eric (Bledsoe) and we looked at 12 turnovers. We saw there was no need for nine of them because they tried to make a hard play, instead of an easy play. Offensively, we’re getting better.”

On the transition defense:

“Do you know where transition defense starts? When you take a bad shot and turn it over. Then you have trouble. We took good shots, but we had 23 turnovers, so it all starts right there. It’s hard to get back when you’re giving them balls for no reason.”

On guarding the 3-point shot:

“When you live and die with the three, mostly you die. You mostly die. When (an opposing) team takes the majority of their shots as threes, normally, you can win that game. Unless, they are making ridiculous shots, which sometimes they do. Rider could come out and shoot 20 threes, because they could shoot enough to get 20 makes in. They are going to shoot it. If they do make 20, we just lost the game. That is how it is. What we are trying to do is guard and make those shots as tough as we can. The other part of it is rebounding.”

On testing his young players:

“If you understand what I’ve done with the early scheduling, I put veteran backcourts against our backcourt. I put veteran point guards against our point guards, because, I really wanted to see these guys and what I needed to work with them on. Now they understand that everyone wants to make their name at John’s (Wall) and Eric’s (Bledsoe) expense. Now, we go against another veteran team.”

On Rider:

“I just got done watching their game against Virginia. On offense, Virginia was grinding it out and made them (Rider) play defense. (Rider) didn’t get those breakout threes, or open ones that get you going. We are giving those up right now. This team has got to come together and say, ‘We are going to be a great defensive team. We are going to listen, work on the defensive end, start talking, rebound, get tougher and go after 50-50 balls.’”

On Ramon Harris:

“The guy who has done the best job right now is Ramon (Harris). Ramon talked and rebounded. In his time, he had five rebounds. He got what we needed. I’ll be honest, if he made a shot or two, he’d be playing 20 minutes a game.”

On making improvements:

“I’m concerned about us getting better. It’s not just winning. We’re trying to win games, obviously. But, it’s more than winning. Offensively, we got better. The only thing we don’t get is how to play with three or four minutes to go. They are playing how they played AAU ball six months ago. It doesn’t matter what the score is, they get numbers in the last three minutes. They say, ‘I’m getting mine, this game is over. I’m getting a few more baskets.’ You can’t do that now. You have to work clock and play to win. I just saw the Virginia game and that is all they did. With 10 minutes to go they got up 22 and they were working the clock. They said, ‘We are going to be disciplined here, work our offense and pass it.’ Obviously, we don’t play like Virginia and I may get that at the four, five or six minute mark against a really good team. But, we need time to work on that.”


Rick Pitino Simplifies Things in November

Excerpt of article from

So instead of inundating the Cardinals with detailed plays from the day practice started, he asked them to push the ball instead. Rather than put together a dozen offensive sets he expected to be executed flawlessly from the get-go, he has kept the playbook basic.

"I just tried to evaluate why we're not good early on, and I think I put too much in,'' he said.

Keeping it simple paid off in a remarkably easy 30-point win over short-handed Arkansas on Tuesday.

The Cardinals knocked down 15 3-pointers, took only a handful of challenged shots - one of Pitino's biggest sticking points - and responded immediately when Arkansas closed within two points early in the second half.

"It's the best we've looked in an opening game since I've been here,'' he said.

By limiting the playbook to five basic sets, he's been able to spend more time in practice going through the options of each play instead of hustling from one scheme to the next.

"I think it's just the result of us putting very few things in and getting better at what we put in earlier in the year,'' Pitino said.

Complete Article

Ex-Cats: They Are Who We Thought They Were

Derrick Jasper, UNLV - 2 Games (2-0)

19.0 MIN 7.0 PTS 3.0 REB 2.0 AST 0.5 TO 0.5 STL 0.0 BLK 45.5% FG 50.0% 3PT 60.0% FT

Morakinyo Williams, Duquesne - 2 Games (2-0)

2.5 MIN 0.0 PTS 0.0 REB 0.0 AST 0.5 TO 0.00 STL 0.0 BLK 00.0% FG 00.0% FT 00.0% 3PT

Alex Legion, Illinois - 2 Games (2-0)

15.5 MIN 4.0 PTS 1.0 REB 0.5 AST 0.5 TO 0.0 STL 0.0 BLK 30.0% FG 50.0% FT 00.0% 3PT

Matt Pilgrim, Oklahoma State - 2 Games (2-0)

14.5 MIN 6.5 PTS 5.0 REB 1.0 AST 1.5 TO 0.5 STL 0.0 BLK 55.6% FG 75.0% FT 00.0% 3PT

Mark Coury, Cornell - 2 Games (2-0)

12.0 MIN 4.0 PTS 3.5 REB 0.0 AST 0.0 TO 0.5 STL 0.0 BLK 75.0% FG 66.7% FT 00.0% 3PT

Adam Delph, Asbury College (NAIA) - 6 Games (4-2)

26.5 MIN 10.6 PTS 2.4 REB 2.0 AST 0.7 TO 2.0 STL 0.4 BLK 37.3% FG 76.9% FT 26.3% 3PT

Donald Williams, Antelope Valley College (JUCO) - 4 Games (3-1)

No official stats available at this time, but he is the team's lead scorer at around 18 PPG

Mark Halsell, Park University (NAIA) - 7 Games (3-4)

On the official roster, but has not played

Kevin Galloway, Texas Southern - Sitting out under NCAA transfer rules
A.J. Stewart, Texas State - Sitting out under NCAA transfer rules
Dusty Mills, Ball State - Has made the team as a walk-on, but sitting out under transfer rules
Jared Carter, NBDL Tryout - Has been waived by the Fort Wayne Mad Ants
Landon Slone, Kentucky (Student) - Has given up college basketball
Michael Porter, Moved to California with family - Has given up college basketball
Dwight Perry, Moved to California - Has given up college basketball

Sam Houston State Gives John Calipari a Headache

Did a team named the Bearkats really cause Kentucky head coach John Calipari to bang his head on the postgame microphone? I guess 18-38 shooting from long range will do that to an opposing head coach.

Transylvania Defeats Berea in Intrastate Battle

Transylvania 77
Berea 66

Final from Berea, Kentucky

Box Score

Game Recap from Transylvania:

Transylvania got a combined 34 points from senior guards Tim Tierney and Matthew Parton Tuesday and the Pioneers handed Berea a 77-66 home court loss in an intrastate men's college basketball game.

2009-10 Schedule/Results
HCAC Men's Basketball Page

Transy is 1-1 on the season while the Mountaineers are 3-2. With the win, Transy avenged an 85-80 overtime loss on its home court to Berea last year.

With Parton pitching in nine points, Transy led by three, 37-34, at halftime. Parton would finish the gme with 16 points, two less than Tierney.

Freshman Brandon Rash nearly had his first career double double for the Pioneers, scoring 10 points and grabbing nine rebounds. Another freshman, Barrett Meyer, was in double figures for the second straight game, finishing the contest with 13 points.

Senior Blake McCowan contributed seven points, four rebounds, and a team-best six assists for Transy, which shot 45 percent from the field on 25-of-56, including six of 20 from long range. Berea out-rebounded the Pioneers, 43-38, but shot just 33 percent (21-of-64) from the field.

The Pioneers are back in action Saturday when they face Centre in their home-opener at 7:30 p.m. It will also be Alumni Day as former Pioneers meet in an exhibition game and are honored at halftime of the varsity contest.

Tobias Harris Journal: Tobias Speaks About Decision

Tobias Harris, the #5 recruit on the Rivals150 List for 2010, has signed with Tennessee. This is the Tobias Harris Journal, an all access feature from that intends to illustrate the high-major recruiting process through the eyes of the recruit.

I talked to Tobias this morning about his decision to sign with Tennessee Volunteers. I asked him several questions and allowed him to answer. Here is a bried Q&A with the newest Tennessee Volunteer, Tobias Harris:

Why did you ultimately choose Tennessee?

"I chose them because I had a great relationship with Coach (Bruce) Pearl and the players. I loved the school's atmosphere. I feel it's the place for me because I am going to be pushed every day to get better. It's a chance to be on a great team and win a national championship."

How are you feeling now that the recruiting process has ended and you have signed on with a college team?

"It feels so great to get this over because now I can focus on winning a state championship."

Now that it's all over, can you share the details of when you actually chose Tennessee and committed?

"It happened the night before I showed it on television. I also committed that night."

Where were your favorites parts of the recruiting process?

"Definitely going on all the visits and meeting so many great people."

How did Bruce Pearl react when you committed?

"Pearl was very happy. He was just ecstatic."

Tobias had to run to school so we ended there.

There were many outlets reporting that Tobias committed while he was in Knoxville several days ago, but that is not the case. Other reports stated that he had made his decision weeks ago and was just using the recruiting process to take the rest of his visits. That is also a false rumor. He was undecided right down to the wire and in the end, he went with the school that felt the best to him.

I will offer narrative soon to give my thoughts on Tobias and the last two weeks of covering his recruitment. We also have a couple of other surprises planned soon.

Kentucky vs. Sam Houston State - Basketball Analysis

Kentucky 102
Sam Houston State 92

Final from Rupp Arena in Lexington, Kentucky

I represented at Rupp Arena last night and offered live coverage from the game. Here are a few notes I made and some quotes that were made during the post-game coverage:

Basketball Analysis:


- Let's call a spade a spade to start with: Kentucky has a long ways to go in understanding defense at this level; young team and that is to be expected, but they have a long ways to go; it will likely cost us a win or two early in the season if something doesn't change immediately
- Down low, the interior defense is great - Cousins, Patterson and Stevenson control the paint; the problem lies with transition defense and perimeter defense; the young Cats struggle with court communication, getting back on the break and determining what to do on screens
- The offense looked much better last night; UK came out and started the game by going to the post or attempting to go the post in their first 5-10 possessions that weren't breaks; they established Cousins and Patterson early and they combined for 47 points and 27 rebounds
- Did not play: Liggins and Dodson
- Back-to-back games that the all-time Rupp Arena individual 3-pointers made record has been broken; not good
- Last two games against Kentucky: 33-64 3PT Shooting for 51.6% - ouch

Key Individual Stats:

Cousins: 10-15 FG 7-13 FT 27 PTS 18 REB 2 BLK 2 STL
Patterson: 8-9 FG 1-2 3PT 3-4 FT 20 PTS 9 REB
Bledsoe: 6-10 FG 5-7 3PT 2-2 FT 19 PTS 6 AST 6 TO 2 BLK 2 STL
Wall: 7-13 FG 2-4 3PT 5-8 FT 21 PTS 6 AST 6 TO 4 REB 2 STL
Miller: 5-10 FG 3-6 3PT 2-2 FT 15 PTS 3 AST
UK Bench: 35 MIN 0-3 FG 0-3 3PT 0 PTS 9 REB 4 AST 1 STL 5 BLK (4 by Orton)

Team: 11-22 3PT (50.0%); 36-60 FG (60.0%); 21 AST 23 TO

Sam Houston State

- I have to give the Bearkats credit; they knew UK's weaknesses and they attacked
- They realized quickly that Kentucky was not adjusting to screens on the perimeter and they started setting them in abundance; they leaked a shooter out almost every time that Kentucky shot the ball and that shooter often found himself wide open on the other end because Kentucky was unable to rotate a defensive man back to find him
- What can I say about Allmond? He is a great shooter and he was in the zone; UK did nothing to get him out of the zone, but all the credit goes to Allmond - just an outstanding individual performance
- The BearKats? Really?

Key Individual Stats:

Allmond: 13-22 FG 11-16 3PT 37 PTS (All time UK and Rupp Arena records for 3-pointers)
Clavell: 3-12 FG 8-8 FT 14 PTS 4 REB
Brown: 4-7 FG 3-5 3PT 11 PTS
Mitchell: 3-13 FG 1-7 3PT 9 PTS 8 AST
Pevehouse: 1-6 FG 1-5 3PT 6-7 FT 9 PTS 4 REB 5 AST

Team: 18-38 3PT (47.4%) 29-77 FG (37.7%) (Rupp Arena record for most 3-pointers made)

Head-to-Head Key Stats:

Game Rebounds: UK 48 SHSU 33
Game Turnovers: UK 23 SHSU 12
Game FG %: UK 60.0% SHSU 37.7%
Game 3PT Shooting: UK 11-22 (50.0%) SHSU 18-38 (47.4%) Combined 29-60 (48.3%)
Game Steals: UK 7 SHSU 14
Points in Paint: UK 48 SHSU 18
Bench Scoring: UK 0 SHSU 24

Post-Game Press Conference Quotes:

John Calipari, Kentucky Head Coach

On SHSU's 3-point shooting:

"I've just called the rules committee to see if they'd move the line back."

"This may be, at this point, the worst defensive team that I've had since 1988."

One thing he would fix before Saturday if he could:

"Guarding the three-point shot."

On the guards:

"This may be the worst rebounding guard group that I've ever had, too."

"We had 12 turnovers between our two point guards."

"We're up 17 and we decide to throw an underhand lob pass off the shot clock."

On the Kentucky team:

"It's who we are right now."

"I love my team, and we have a chance of being good. But we also have a chance of being bad if we don't start changing some things.”

“I was so mad a couple of times my head almost popped off.

On Rider:

"They got beat by Virginia and they didn't shoot the ball. You think they're gonna shoot the ball when they come in here on Saturday?"

"They're a better three-point shooting team than this team we played here tonight."

Bob Marlin, Sam Houston State Head Coach

On DeMarcus Cousins:

"Cousins was a monster inside."

"Cousins played super."

On Kentucky:

"Kentucky's got a nice team."

"If we played them again tomorrow, we'd use the same gameplan."

On giving up so many points:

"We haven't given up a hundred points in a long time."

"We followed the defensive gameplan the way we wanted."

On Kentucky's big men inside:

"They had twelve blocks and we had one."

One little slip:

"Obviously Memphis, uh, excuse me, Kentucky..."

Listen to Calipari's Entire Postgame Press Conference (via John Clay)

A Couple of Things that I Consider "Cool":

- I happened to walk out of Rupp Arena at the same time as Buster Patterson (Patrick's dad). He is extremely nice and I imagine it would be something else to sit through a game with him. We started up a conversation about the game and it was interesting to hear his points on things:

I asked him his thoughts on Allmond basically going off in the game:

"It seems like everybody goes off against us when they come here. (he laughs) You know, I'm old school...when a player gets going like that, you have to put a lick on him...knock him out of his rhythm. Nothing dirty or anything, but you can't let a player get going like that."

His thoughts on Patrick's new role in Calipari's offense:

"You know, he isn't all the way there yet, but he's improving each game. I keep telling him he needs to be like his old man and not be afraid to shoot. Heck, I shoot it every time I get it."

- Dicky Lyons Jr. (UK football) was the customary "Y" in the Kentucky cheer last night; he received a very warm welcome from the Big Blue Nation

- I don't think "Mony Mony" was played during a timeout last night; I guess they figured there is not point if Dancin' Darren Moscoe isn't there

- Things you didn't see on television: John Wall spilled over the media table behind the basketball after running out-of-bounds on a fastbreak play; A large pipe in the media room started leaking just before the post-game press conference - Larry Vaught concluded that since it wasn't raining outside, that the water was likely the kind that was just flushed - he said, "The fans are clearing out so there shouldn't be to many more flushes tonight. We should be safe."

- Alan Cutler was sporting some impressive-looking cowboy boots last night; I couldn't help but wonder what a Billy Gillispie chase would look like in boots

- I talked to Patrick Patterson after the game last night and told him that I would be bringing a little girl with cancer to a game soon. He said he would be more-than-happy to meet her and take some pictures with her. Patrick Patterson is the man.

NKU Basketball to Host John L. Griffin/Lions Club Classic

Press Release from NKU:

The Northern Kentucky University men’s basketball team plays host to the 28th annual John L. Griffin/Lions Club Classic this weekend in The Bank of Kentucky Center.

Christian Brothers (1-0) takes on 14th-ranked Tusculum (1-0) in Friday’s opener at 5:30 p.m. In the nightcap, NKU meets Lake Erie (1-1) at 7:45 p.m. On Saturday, the consolation game is at 5:30 p.m., followed by the championship at 7:45 p.m.

NKU is 0-1 after dropping a 57-54 decision to Grand Valley State last Sunday in Allendale, Mich. The loss snapped a streak of 27 consecutive season-opening victories by the Norse.

Justin Ringler scored six points in the final minute of the game to lead Grand Valley State. Ringler, who finished with 24 points, gave Grand Valley State a 51-49 lead with 59 seconds remaining by converting a driving layup. He later added four free throws in the final 12 seconds to seal the win for the Lakers, who are ranked 13th nationally in the NCAA Division II poll.

Chris Knight scored 15 points to lead NKU, while teammate David Palmer added 12 points and nine rebounds. Palmer’s basket with 9:35 remaining gave NKU a 43-38 lead, but Grand Valley State used a 9-4 spurt to tie the game at 47-all.

NKU shot 42 percent from the field and won the rebounding battle by a 32-29 margin. The Norse held Grand Valley State without a 3-point field goal (0-for-10), but the Lakers were 17-for-24 at the free-throw line.

LAST YEAR’S GRIFFIN CLASSIC: NKU finished 2-0 in last season’s John L. Griffin/Lions Club Classic by posting wins against Olivet Nazarene (75-57) and UC-Clermont (87-41).

The Norse are 9-1 in the John L. Griffin/Lions Club Classic under head coach Dave Bezold. NKU’s only setback in the event since Bezold became head coach was a 66-53 loss to Findlay in 2007.

Complete Preview Five Thoughts on College Basketball blogger "jherwitt" offers five thoughts on the college basketball season to this point. His first thought is about Kentucky's John Wall:

1. John Wall came into the season with maybe as much hype as any freshman over the last five years. And in the first two weeks of the 2009-10 campaign, he's already lived up to it. In his collegiate debut, the freshman point guard scored 19 points, but none was bigger than his game-winning shot that sank an impressive upset bid by Miami (Ohio) on Monday night. "It felt good to make a shot like that and I just have to have confidence to make those and I did," Wall said. With the youth that John Calipari possesses in the backcourt, the former Memphis coach will need Wall to play beyond his years and hit big shots in critical moments if the Wildcats are to be a Final Four team like so many projected coming into this season. The goal for Calipari, however, is for Wall to also get some help from his sidekicks. That wasn't a problem Thursday night in Lexington as Kentucky's starting five scored all of its 102 points against Sam Houston State in a 10-point victory. But it's at the other end of the court that concerns Calipari the most after watching his team give up 92 points to the Bearkats. "This may be, at this point, the worst defensive team that I have had since 1988," he said after the win. "At the end of the day, if we are going to be what everyone thinks that we can be, we have to be one of the best defensive teams in the country."

Kentucky vs. Sam Houston State in Pictures

Always an exciting moment at Rupp Arena

I'm not certain on what was being said during this timeout, but it was right after Allmon hit his 9th or 10th 3-pointer...I'd say the picture doesn't do the timeout justice if I were guessing

"This is the worst defensive team I've had since 1988..." Yeah, he really said that

The SHSU coach was all business after the game

Cousins was pretty happy with his performance (don't blame him)

Kentucky's John Wall Meets

Yours truly with John Wall earlier tonight at Rupp Arena

(and for my critics: look I smiled!)

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Colonels Hang Tough Against Pitt in Loss

Pittsburgh 71
Eastern Kentucky 60

Final from O’Reilly Auto Parts CBE Classic at Pittsburgh

Excerpt of Game Recap from EKU:

The Eastern Kentucky University men’s basketball team pulled to within eight points of Pittsburgh with just over a minute to play; however, the Panthers were able to stave off the late rally and defeat the Colonels, 71-60, Thursday night at the Peterson Events Center. The game was part of the 2009 O’Reilly Auto Parts CBE Classic.

With EKU (1-1) trailing 68-55 with 3:25 remaining in the game, junior Spencer Perrin knocked down his first three-pointer of the season and then converted a layup to make the score 68-60 with 1:03 showing on the clock.

Pitt (3-0), however, hit three free throws and held the Colonels scoreless over the last minute to escape with a 71-60 win.

Junior Justin Stommes led all scorers with 24 points on 9-of-14 shooting including 3-of-7 deep. Perrin contributed with an excellent all-around performance, scoring 11 points and recording team highs with six rebounds, five assists and two blocks. Senior Josh Taylor, in his return to his hometown, scored 11 points and knocked down three trifectas.

Ashton Gibbs paced Pitt with 20 points while Nasir Robinson contributed 15 points.

The Panthers out-rebounded EKU 47-25 on the night.

Complete Game Recap and Box Score

Sam Bowie Trying to Become Club's First Black Member

Excerpt of Article on

Former UK Men's Basketball player Sam Bowie said Thursday that he has applied for membership in Lexington's Idle Hour Country Club, which has never had an African American member.

Bowie said that he approached Idle Hour, not the other way around, and he expects to hear whether he has been accepted within the next week. In the past, Idle Hour has been criticized for having no black members.

"No one had contacted us as far as the country club was concerned, trying to get the barrier broken," Bowie said in an interview Thursday.
Bowie said he expects that critics will say he is a "token" member who was accepted "to end the criticism." But that is not the case, he said.

Complete Article

Kentucky vs. Sam Houston State - Live Coverage is reporting live from this event...

- About 4 minutes from introductions
- First observation tonight: the Cancun Challenge and Palace Resorts ads on the Rupp Arena court
- UK's starting lineup: Cousins, Wall, Bledsoe, Miller and Patterson
- Game is getting ready to start; Cats have a big size advantage
- UK wins the tip; post kicks out to Bledsoe for a 3-pointer; 3-0 UK
- Cats are in a totally different-looking offense to start the game
- Patterson misses a FT, Cousins rebounds and puts it up and in and he's fouled; makes the FT
- UK is in a set offense against the 2-3 zone; Patterson drains a 3-pointer from the top of the key to make it 10-2 Kentucky
- Kentucky is dominating in the paint right now; back-to-back dunks; now 14-2 Kentucky
- Miller blocks a dunk, but is called for a foul; 14-5 UK, SHSU to the line for 2 shots
- Kentucky has fed the post on every possession that wasn't a break so far
- UK looks much more aggressive on both ends tonight
- 15:54 first half; timeout on the floor; UK 14 SHSU 7
- UK is still giving up way to many open looks from long range; Bearkats are missing though
- Jon Hood enters the game early for Kentucky
- Cousins is playing hard out of the gate tonight; he is a man amongst boys right now
- DeMarcus Cousins looks like an NBA city playing in the local church league right now; complete dominance by the UK big man; he already has 10 points
- Cousins has 10 points and 8 rebounds in 6:25 of game action; 19-7 UK
- Cousins is a one man gang tonight; he just stole the ball and slid to the floor to recover it
- 30-second timeout UK; UK 19 SHSU 7
- SHSU calls a 3o-second timeout; UK now leads 21-7 with 12:16 remaining in the half
- Couple of bad possessions by both teams after the timeout
- 11:05 first half; timeout on the floor; UK 21 SHSU 7
- Kentucky gives up back-to-back 3-pointers; UK calls a 30-second timeout and Calipari is absolutely going ballistic
- Three consecutive 3-pointers by SHSU to trim the lead to 23-16
- Cats look like the Lakers on a fast break; now lead 27-16
- Another 3-pointer for the Bearkats
- Yet another 3-pointer for SHSU; Miller answers for Kentucky
- 7:32 first half; timeout on the floor; UK 30 SHSU 22
- In the last 52:28 of game minutes; opponents are 21-38 from the 3-point line vs. Kentucky
- Wow, Bearkats drain another 3-pointer; UK has no perimeter defense
- Darius Miller hits a three; now 35-25 UK
- Unbelievable! Another 3-pointer for SHSU
- Cousins has 16 points in the first half; 43-28 Kentucky
- 3:38 first half; timeout on the floor; UK 43 SHSU 28
- SHSU now has nine 3-pointers; they are really bad right now at perimeter defense and transition defense
- The Beakcats drain another transition 3-pointer; 48-36 UK
- And another 3-pointer! 48-39 UK; timeout UK
- Unbelievable shooting display by SHSU; 12-21 3-pointers in the first half
- Halftime: Kentucky 53 Sam Houston State 42
- Miller starts the half with a basket to make it 55-42
- First half stats: Cousins had 18 points and 10 rebounds; SHSU shots 12-21 from long range
- Bledsoe drains a three; answered on the other end; 60-45 Kentucky
- Bledsoe gets another 3-pointer; he has the hot hand early in the 2nd half
- Corey Allmond tied the Rupp Arena record (that was set in the Miami game) with 8 first half 3-pointers; one more and the record will be broken a game after it was set
- John Wall hits a three; he now has 14 points for Kentucky
- SHSU drains another 3-pointer; unbelievable shooting display again tonight
- 15:37 second half; timeout on the floor; UK 70 SHSU 52
- Dicky Lyons Jr. serves as the honorary "Y" in the timeout Kentucky cheer
- Allmond nails a 3-pointer to break the all-time Rupp Arena record; he now has 9
- The Cats are trying to be flashy and earn a couple of turnovers as a result; Calipari is not amused
- SHSU is still hanging around; it's now 73-59
- Allmond just nailed his 10th 3-pointer; Calipari is exploding in the timeout huddle
- 11:57 second half; timeout on the floor; UK 74 SHSU 62
- Amazing move by Wall to put the Cats up 76-62
- Harris with a beautiful pass to Cousins for the slam; he now has 22 points
- SHSU calls a 30-second timeout; 9:38 remaining and UK leads 79-64
- Another 3-pointer for the Bearkats; they are down only 12 points
- It is now only a 10-point lead for Kentucky; 81-71
- 6:53 remaining and SHSU has trimmed the lead down to 81-73
- Kentucky goes back to the post after the timeout
- Wall takes a nasty spill into the crowd on a fast break
- Lost my computer connection for several minutes; 2:54 remaining and it's UK 98 SHSU 82
- Cousins now has 25 points in the game
- Interesting state: UK has zero bench points tonight
- Allmond has torched the Cats for 35 points tonight
- Cats get their 100th point on a Bledsoe FT; 100-88 UK
- 1:35 remaining; UK 100 SHSU 90
- Cousins hits a pair of FTs to make it 102-90; one minute remaining
- Final: Kentucky 102 Sam Houston State 92

Tobias Harris Journal: Welcome to Rocky Top

Tobias Harris, the #5 recruit on the Rivals150 List for 2010, has committed to Tennessee. This is the Tobias Harris Journal, an all access feature from that intends to illustrate the high-major recruiting process through the eyes of the recruit.

Tobias has announced on ESPNU that he will be a Tennessee Volunteer.

More later...until then:

Sam Houston State vs. Kentucky - Basketball Preview

Sam Houston State (2-0) vs. Kentucky (2-0)

2009 Cancun Challenge at Lexington Kentucky

NOTE: will be covering this event live from Rupp Arena

Game Notes: UK Notes Sam Houston State Notes
Date & Time: Thursday, Nov. 197:00 p.m
Location: Rupp Arena Lexington, Ky.

TV: Live on FS South; delayed BBSN (coverage details)
Radio: BBSNGameTracker Online Audio Online Video via ESPN360 Live Blog

Game Preview from

The Wildcats open play in the first rounds of the Cancun Challenge Thursday against Sam Houston State, riding a modest two-game winning streak to open the season.

Kentucky faced its biggest challenge in the young season, needing a jumper from John Wall with 0.5 seconds left to claim a 72-70 win over the Miami Redhawks. Wall finished the game with a team-high 19 points. Junior Patrick Patterson added his second double-double in as many games with 17 points and 10 rebounds while freshman DeMarcus Cousins tallied his first career double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds, all in the second half.

UK takes on Sam Houston State and Rider in the first two rounds of the tournament in Rupp Arena.

Pre-game Quotes from John Calipari:

On John Wall's shot to win the Miami game:

“In those situations I don't call timeouts. I let them bring it up and if I don't like what I see or don't like the situation or who has the ball, then I will call a timeout. I will yell at the official. The thing that I liked was that he wanted to make the game winning shot and wanted the ball in his hands. Now it looks like we have two or maybe three guys that, when the game is on the line, they are not afraid to make plays. As a matter of fact, they want to make a play which means that they are not afraid to miss in those situations.”

On if he could hit that shot when he got here or if that is something that has developed since he arrived at Kentucky …

“(Assistant coach) Rod (Strickland) is working with him and we are working on some things, but when I watched this tape, he didn't play particularly well. He played OK, but not particularly very well. He didn't give the ball up early enough and there were probably eight or nine chances where he could have given the ball up to Eric earlier and let Eric make a play. He thinks that when he can't make a play then he needs to pass it, but you can't be a point guard and think that way. So we have to work on it. I will be honest with you, that was Derrick Rose and Tyreke Evans. It is stuff that we have to work on with him. It was a good shot, but we've got work to do today.”

On Darnell Dodson:

“I was so mad at him earlier in the week. I said things that I haven't said before and used words that I haven't used before. The other thing is that Darius is starting to play better and I want to ride him a little bit because I think that he is a big factor in what we are doing. But, he went in and helped us. He didn't do much in the second half, but he came in the first half and stopped the bleeding when we needed it.”

On Darius Miller's improvement from game one to game two:

“He made shots. It changes your complexion and your whole look. Again, I apologized to him because I saw it two weeks earlier that he was moving his shoulders back. I saw it on the tape and meant to say something to him and just never did. The day before, I just said, ‘Your shoulders are back. Don't change your shot just don't throw your shoulders back.' When your shoulders go back and your head goes back then your shot goes back and there is only one way to shoot it and that is flat. You can't shoot that ball up or you will fall on your back. He is working at it and I am happy for him. I usually say something and I don't know why I didn't. I think that I was mad at him for not making a shot is why I didn't, but I don't really know. Then I finally said, ‘Listen kid get over it.' He is a great kid, they all are great kids. They are trying. We all have to get a little better rhythm in the game, our rhythm stinks right now. In other words, we race it up and that means shoot it fast. No, if we race it up that means to put pressure on them to make them all run into the lane so you can pass and pass and now they have to close out and you can start motion or posting or whatever you want. We have to get better at posting up. I am going to start working with the big men myself, because we have to start posting better. But, you have to catch it and be big in there and make a shot!”

On posting up:

“What you have to do is face the ball. A player that doesn't want to play and wants it easiest will let the guy get around him so that they got to throw it over his head and he gets a free layup. ‘Ah, I'm a man. I'm a scorer,' he says. But a guy that is a man makes the defender stay behind him and catches it and then scores through the defender. I have done this a long time, the guys that have no confidence in their game let the guy go around them and then yell, ‘Throw it over the top!' Then the guy shoots a layup. Except, it is a hard pass and he one hands it and doesn't catch it. They come from the weak side and it is out of bounds and he says, ‘My bad.' So we are going to get back to facing the ball and getting down. The other thing is getting down low. You can't play standing straight up and down.”

My Thoughts: This is another of those "mid-major" teams that can cause problems. SHS is picked by many to win the Southland Conference and, like Miami (OH), they will play hard and have an excellent gameplan.

The difference I would note this season in comparison to season's past is the fact that Kentucky is playing a good non-conference schedule. They are playing teams that will finish in the 50-150 range in RPI, rather than teams that will finish 200+. This is a great scheduling idea for SEC preparation and also to boost RPI for March. The downside, however, is that these teams can actually compete with the high-majors from BCS conferences.

Look for the Bearkats to follow the red carpet laid by Morehead State and Miami (OH) - plenty of tough zone defense and draining the clock...

My Prediction: Kentucky 78 Sam Houston State 55

Tobias Harris Sporting Louisville Gear

What's it mean? Absolutely nothing... Decision coming soon on ESPNU

Ed Davender Indicted on 23 Counts of Theft by Deception

Excerpt of Article from

A former University of Kentucky men's basketball player accused of running a ticket scam totaling more than $70,000 has been indicted on 23 counts of theft by deception.

Lexington police had originally charged Ed E. Davender, 43, of Georgetown, of taking money from at least three people after promising them UK basketball season tickets that he didn't have. But a Fayette County grand jury has indicted Davender on charges that he unlawfully obtained money from 19 people "with the intent to permanently deprive them of the money" between May 2003 and August 2009.

Complete Article

Eastern Kentucky Prepares for Battle with Pittsburgh

Eastern Kentucky (1-0) vs. Pittsburgh (2-0)

O'Reilly Auto Parts CBE Classic

When: Thursday, November 19, 2009 at 7 p.m. ET
Where: Petersen Events Center (12,508) • Pittsburgh, Pa.
Summary: Pitt plays its second O'Reilly Auto Parts CBE Classic game as it hosts Ohio Valley Conference foe Eastern Kentucky at the Petersen Events Center.

The Eastern Kentucky University men’s basketball team plays its first road game of the year Thursday night at Big East foe Pittsburgh. Tip time is slated for 7 p.m.

Eastern Kentucky (1-0) is coming off a season-opening win where the team shot 63.3 percent (38-of-60) from the floor. It marked the best shooting percentage by an EKU team since Jan. 29, 2007 when the Colonels netted 64.4 percent (38-of-59) of their shots in a win over UT Martin.

Pitt (2-0) won its most recent outing Tuesday night against Binghamton, 71-46. Ashton Gibbs finished with a career-high 22 points, going 6-of-10 (60 percent) on three-pointers. The Panthers lost four of their five starters from last year’s team that advanced to the Elite Eight, but have won 23 straight home games, a streak which ranks third among the school’s all-time home win streaks. The streak ranks as the nation’s third longest current streak.

This is the second straight year Eastern Kentucky has faced a Big East squad. Last season, the Colonels fell to Cincinnati in overtime, 85-77. This is the first meeting between EKU and Pitt since Jan. 12, 1981 when the Panthers prevailed, 80-56. The Panthers lead the all-time series, 2-0.

Following the contest at Pittsburgh, the Colonels return home to host Fairleigh Dickinson, UC Irvine and UTSA (Nov. 23-25) as part of the 2009 O’Reilly Auto Parts CBE Classic.

Complete Preview from EKU

Centre Comeback Falls Just Short in Opening Loss

Maryville 72
Centre 70

Final from Danville, Kentucky

For only the second time in the last nine years, the Centre College men's basketball team dropped its season-opening game as the Colonels' rally came up short in a 72-70 loss to visiting Maryville College, Wednesday, Nov. 18 in Alumni Gymnasium in Danville, Ky.

The Colonels fall to 0-1 to start the season, while the Scots, who won their season-opener against Methodist, improve to 2-0 in the early going.

Greg Hernandez led all scorers with 20 points and 10 rebounds. Hernandez made nine of 14 shots in 33 minutes of action. Guard Eryk Watson also finished in double figures with 12 points.

All five starters finished in double figures for Centre led by Crawford's 17 points and eight rebounds. Junior Alex Lloyd (Lexington, Ky.) tallied a double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds. Ellis finished with 14 points, while Mullaney added 13 and Noll 11 in the defeat.

The Colonels will look to bounce back Saturday, Nov. 21 when they travel to Lexington, Ky. to play in-state rival Transyvlania University. Tip-off is set for 7:30 p.m.

Complete Game Recap from Centre

Rick Pitino Takes Look at JUCO Forward Ricardo Ratliffe

Rick Pitino made a stop in Gainesville, Florida yesterday to briefly watch the Gators play against Georgia Southern. Rick's son, Richard, is an assistant to head coach Billy Donovan on the Florida staff.

That is a nice story, but the real reason Pitino was in Florida was to check out 6-9 forward Ricardo Ratliffe, a sophomore at Central Florida Community College (JUCO).

Ratliffe is widely considered one of the top JUCO prospects in the nation. In 2008-09, Ratliffe averaged 26.5 points per game and shot an impressive 65.4% from the field. The big man also shot 23-61 (37.7%) from long range. In addition, he averaged 11 rebounds and 1.4 blocked shots a game.

Rivals Ranks Ratliffe #1 JUCO Player

Kentucky Recruit Brandon Knight Benches 325 lbs.

Excerpt of an article from

As if opponents didn't have enough to worry about, along comes a bigger and stronger Brandon Knight.

The Fort Lauderdale Pine Crest five-star guard and reigning Gatorade National Player of the Year still wears the signature long braids but will look decidedly stronger when he makes his preseason debut at the Chaminade High School Tip-off Classic on Thursday.

With help from a personal trainer, Knight has intensified his work in the weight room, resulting in a 325-pound bench press. After adding 10 pounds since his junior season, Knight now carries a chiseled 190 pounds on his 6-4 frame.

"I don't really feel comfortable unless I'm trying to get better,'' said Knight, who averaged 31.8 points, 8.7 rebounds and 5.6 assists as a junior. "Everybody tells me I need to rest a little bit but I'm really not a person that likes to rest much. I like to get the work in.''

Preston Knowles is Making a Statement at Louisville

I watched Preston Knowles play basketball several times when he was a senior at George Rogers Clark High School.

I specifically remember watching him in the Sweet 16 at Rupp Arena. I turned to a good friend that was sitting with me and commented, "I think UK is missing the boat on that kid. He has the potential to become a nice player at the high-major level."

My buddy agreed that he was a talented player and we were both impressed when it was obvious that GRC was going to lose in the Sweet 16 and a sub came into the game for Knowles. The impressive part was that Knowles went to the midcourt emblem at Rupp and kissed the floor. He then went to the sidelines and congratulated the opposing team's players and coaching staff. That is a level of sportsmanship that I greatly respect and that certainly is not the norm for a high school kid.

Eventually, Louisville made the call and Knowles ended up playing for the Cardinals and head coach Rick Pitino.

As he enters his junior season, it appears that I was onto something with Knowles. He was impressive during the Cardinals' exhibition schedule and he opened the season with 11 points, 6 assists and 3 rebounds against Arkansas. He was also an impressive 3-5 from long range and he shot the ball with a great deal of confidence.

If that isn't enough, an article in the Winchester Sun explains that Knowles is excelling off-the-court, as well. He finished last season with a 3.2 GPA in the classroom.

Preston Knowles is making a statement at Louisville and the rest of the Big East better add him to the scouting report this season. He has taken his game to the high-major level.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Late-Night Message from Tobias Harris

Tobias Harris, the #5 recruit on the Rivals150 List for 2010, is now 1 day away from announcing his college choice. This is the Tobias Harris Journal, an all access feature from that intends to illustrate the high-major recruiting process through the eyes of the recruit.

I just spoke to Tobias and he said it has been a long day and tomorrow will be even longer.

He has made his college choice and he says, "it's a weight lifted off my shoulders!"

He is looking forward to making his announcement and he hopes everyone will tune in to ESPNU tomorrow evening at 5:30 p.m. EST.

I just want to add a note that it has been a real pleasure to have the opportunity to get to know this young man. I hope all fans will be respectful of his decision and realize that he will be going to the school that is best for him. Keep in mind that he is a high school senior and has been challenged to make a decision that will change the course of his life. Let me add that you would be hard-pressed to find a nicer kid than Tobias.

I ask that everyone please be respectful and show class in supporting Tobias Harris as he announces his future tomorrow.

Terrence Jones Announces Intentions on Twitter

Terrence Jones posted this on his Twitter account earlier:

TerrenceJones1 if u not sure bout wats right waiting cudn be wrong

As anticipated, Jones will hold off on making his college decision until Spring. The 2010 power forward is being heavily recruited several schools, including Kentucky.

St. Catharine Basketball Off to 6-0 Start

St. Catharine 95
Alice Lloyd 68

Final from St. Catharine

St. Catharine (6-0), who finished 5-24 a season ago, has exploded out of the gates to win their first six games of 2009-10.

The Patriots were led by Ervin Williams with 16 points and 7 rebounds. Josh Edwards put up 16 points and dished out 8 assists. Brandon Johnson added a double-double with 10 points and 11 rebounds.

The Eagles competed hard early but they could not content with the Patriots' depth.

Morehead State Basketball Signs Five for 2010

Morehead State men’s basketball coach Donnie Tyndall has announced the signing of five prospects for the 2010-11 season.

The five commitments include:

• P.J. Meyers (5-7, 165 lbs., G, Augusta, Ga. – Chattanooga State Community College)
• Shannon Williams (6-8, 225 lbs., F, Detroit, MI – Cass Tech High School)
• Arthur McMillan (6-5, 220 lbs., F, Nashville, TN – Hillsboro High School)
• Robert Wade (6-7, 210 lbs., F, Nashville, TN – Maplewood High School)
• Kevin Gray (6-1, 180 lbs., G, Reynoldsburg, OH – Reynoldsburg High School)

Press Release from

More Criminal Charges Against Karen Sypher

Article from

The woman accused of being at the center of an extortion plot against University of Louisville basketball coach Rick Pitino is facing more charges.

On Wednesday, the U.S. attorney's office and the FBI announced that Karen Sypher has been indicted on charges including extortion and retaliation against victim.

Counts 1, 2 and 3 of the indictment charge Sypher with extortion; counts 4 and 5 charge that she lied to FBI agents; and count 6 charges her with retaliating against a victim and witness.

Counts 2, 3, 5 and 6 are completely new.

Murray State Basketball Signs Chris Griffin

Press Release by

Murray State men’s basketball head coach Billy Kennedy announced the signing of Chris Griffin (6-7, 205) from Leon High School in Tallahassee, Fla.

“We are excited to add Chris to our program,” MSU head coach Billy Kennedy said. “He is a player who can play a lot of positions; he’s really a guard in a forward’s body. We like him at the small forward position.”

Griffin played his junior season at FAMU High School where he scored 19 points and grabbed 12 rebounds per game, to go along with eight blocks per game.

He has recorded seven triple-doubles and turned in a memorable performance against LHS last season when he scored 40 points, hauled in 16 rebounds and made eight blocks.

“Chris is a three to four dimension player; He plays the guard for me but he can also play from point guard to power forward,” Leon High School Coach Rick Davis said. “Chris is explosive to the basket and his midrange game is probably his best shot. He is a good shot blocker, a great passer and he averaged more assists than my point guard last year.”

Griffin’s AAU coach in summer basketball was Chris Ayers.

“He’s a great kid with a great attitude,” Ayers said. “He listens and he goes out and does it. He respects his coaches and Chris brings so much to the table. He can play anywhere on the court.”, and Breakdown Magazine have ranked Griffin in the top-25 players in the state. ranks him in the top-100 small forwards in the nation.

Griffin was also invited and participated in the Reebok U All-American Camp last summer.

Griffin joins Shawn Jackson (6-9, 230) of Melody Christian Academy in Live Oak, Fla., in the Murray State 2010 recruiting class. Both will be freshmen for the Racers in the fall of 2010.

Basketball Referees: Nuts and Bolts, Nuts and Bolts... likely really did get screwed!

According to a study co-authored by a professor at Indiana:

An examination of 365 major conference games played during the 2004-05 college men's basketball season found a clear pattern of an increased probability of a foul on the team with fewer fouls, the visiting team and the team that is leading.

In other words, many of those times that you were screaming at the officials, throwing things at the television or cursing the radio - your feelings may have been warranted. Officials actually do tend to sway calls against teams that are on the road, or leading or that are in better shape foul-wise.

The professors who conducted the study, because they were suspicious themselves, added:

"We had suspected that, having played and watched basketball," [Kyle J. Anderson, a visiting assistant professor of business economics at Kelley-Indianapolis] added. "But once we started to run the data, I think the magnitude of the effect was much more than we had ever anticipated. We thought that this was going be a very small effect."

Brian Cook of says:

This can only be incompetence. If a foul is a foul, then none of these trends would exist. Several of them would be reversed: presumably the team that's ahead is better at basketball and less prone to fouling, and that's even more obviously true for the team with fewer fouls on it.

Cook adds:

The most ridiculous stat dropped: if a home team is trailing in the foul count by five fouls—i.e. they've established that they're considerably more likely to foul than the opponent—69% of the time the next foul goes on the visitors. The effect steadily increases as the disparity grows. Evening the calls up is a real motivator.

So, there you have it - the next time that obvious charge is called a block or that body check is overlooked on a blocked shot - you have a right to chant, "nuts and bolts, nuts and bolts, we got screwed!"

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