Saturday, November 28, 2009

What Happens in Vegas...Is a Tough Loss for Louisville


UNLV 76
Louisivlle 71

Final from Las Vegas, Nevada

Game Recap by AllKYHoops.com:

A fierce second half comeback fell short for the Louisville Cardinals (4-1) as they lost to UNLV 76-71.

Louisville found themselves down 53-34 with 14:05 remaining in the game but mounted a ferocious comeback. The Cardinals tied the game 62-62 at the 5:22 mark, but was unable to retake the lead. The score was close for several minutes, but UNLV (5-0) was able to pull it out for the homecourt victory.

The Rebels were led by Oscar Bellfield with 17 points and 4 assists. Tre'Von Willis added 16 points and a game high 9 assists. Former University of Kentucky guard Derrick Jasper added 12 points, 4 rebounds and 2 assists for UNLV.

Louisville picked up 18 points from senior guard Edgar Sosa and 13 points from big man Samardo Samuels. Rakeem Buckles added a double-double off the bench with 10 points and 11 rebounds.

The Cardinals return to action Wednesday when they host Stetson.

Bellarmine Basketball Improves to 4-1 with Pair of Wins

The Bellarmine Knights are off to a 4-1 start after picking up a pair of back-to-back wins in the Bill Joergens Memorial Tournament hosted by the University of Southern Indiana.

Last night, Bellarmine destroyed Minnesota-Duluth by a score of 90-48. Braydon Hobbs led the Knights with 14 points on perfect 5-5 field goal shooting.

In today's action, the Knights defeated Michigan Tech 79-66 behind career performances from Jeremy Kendle and Chris Dowe. Kendle tied a career high wtih 24 points on 11-13 shooting. Dowe reached his career high with 15 points on 5-5 shooting.

Bellarmine will now prepare for a tough conference test, as the Knights will travel back to Evansville to face Southern Indiana in the Great Lakes Valley Conference opener for both teams on Thursday, Dec. 3. Bellarmine then follows that up with their annual road trip to Kentucky Wesleyan on Dec. 5.

Turnovers Doom Union College Against IU Southeast

IU Southeast 87
Union College 76

Final form Barbourville, Kentucky


Game Recap from Union College:

Union College had problems hanging onto the ball and visiting Indiana University Southeast took advantage of the opportunities as the Grenadiers registered an 87-76 victory Saturday.

The Bulldogs committed 24 turnovers, which the Grenadiers cashed in for 29 points. Conversely, IU Southeast turned the ball over only 12 times, resulting in 17 points for Union.

The loss dropped Union to 4-5 on the season, while IU Southeast improved to 6-2 overall.

The Bulldogs trailed by as much as 13 points in the first half but rallied to cut the deficit to 37-31 at the half.

As the second half unfolded, Union immediately began chipping away at the deficit and eventually took a 47-46 lead after a Beau Brown (Athens, Tenn.) bucket with 15:15 remaining.

IU Southeast responded with an 11-4 surge to open up a 57-51 margin at the 11:15 mark. But once again, the Bulldogs rallied and tied the game at 62-62 when Payton Ponzer (Independence, Ky.) hit a pair a free throws with 8:50 remaining.

However, Union never regained the lead as IU Southeast methodically opened up a 78-68 lead following a Brice Mitchell basket with 4:28 left. Ponzer drained a 3-pointer to cut the margin to seven, but the Grenadiers pushed the lead to 83-71 en route to the 11-point win.

Darrel Jackson (Jonesboro, Ark.) led Union with 19 points and four assists, while Ponzer followed with 15 points. Jerome Carmichael (Newport, Tenn.) knocked in 13 points.

For IU Southeast, Carlos Mitchell set the pace with 19 points with Rick Bodiford contributing 18 points and a game-high seven rebounds. Jazzmire Ferguson helped out with 14 points and six assists.

Union returns to action Wednesday when it pays Appalachian Athletic Conference foe Milligan (Tenn.) College a visit. Game time is set for 7:30 p.m.

Kentucky Has 9 Players on NBA Rosters; SEC Has 39

Kentucky is near the top of the list of college teams that have ex-players on current NBA rosters. The Wildcats currently have 9 players in the NBA, which trails only Duke, UCLA, Connecticut, North Carolina and Arizona.

The Southeastern Conference currently has 39 players in the league, which trails the Pac 10 (50), the ACC (53) and the Big East (55).

NCAA Division I Schools Ranked by Number of NBA Players:

Duke 14
UCLA 14
Connecticut 13
North Carolina 13
Arizona 10
Florida 9
Kansas 9
Kentucky 9
Georgia Tech 7
Ohio St. 7
Texas 7

Complete Rankings

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Top 25 Kentucky Basketball Recruit to Announce Soon?


I was just told by someone that I consider to be a reliable source that a top 25 recruit in the 2010 Class will be announcing his college decision soon. He said that Kentucky is definitely in the mix and an announcement could come within the next week.

I know the name but I do not want to start an unverified Internet rumor without knowing more on the situation. That being said, there are 5 uncommitted top 25 recruits in the 2010 Class (per Rivals.com):

1. Brandon Knight ***** G 6-3/185

Notes: Official list of offers includes Connecticut, Kansas, Kentucky, Florida, Miami (FL) and Syracuse; He was thought to be down to Connecticut, Kansas and Kentucky but apparently Florida made a really good impression on Knight during his recent visit to Gainesville

My Thoughts: I feel that UK is still in the mix for Knight, but I don't see him announcing anything until Spring

4. Josh Selby ***** G 6-2/183

Notes: He decommitted from Tennessee and re-opened his recruitment; his list of offers includes Kentucky, Indiana, Kansas, Miami (FL) and Syracuse

My Thoughts: I think UK is still firmly in the mix for Selby, as well; In reality, Kentucky's chances may be a little higher for Selby than they are for Knight

7. Cory Joseph ***** G 6-3/180

Notes: Kentucky has not offered Joseph to my knowledge; Rivals lists his offers as Connecticut, Minnesota, Texas, UNLV and Villanova

My Thoughts: It's not impossible, but I would be shocked if Joseph ends up at Kentucky

13. Terrence Jones ***** F 6-8/220

Notes: Jones is a very talented forward that has offers from California, Kentucky, Oklahoma, Oregon, UCLA and Washington

My Thoughts: Kentucky has recruited Jones pretty hard, but UK is also the only school east of the Mississippi on his list; I think they have a shot at Jones, but my gut feeling is that he stays out west

14. C.J. Leslie ***** F 6-8/205

Notes: Leslie is a very talented forward that has offers from a host of schools including Kentucky, Florida, N.C. State, Maryland, Georgia Tech and Connecticut.

My Thoughts: I have stated all along that I think Leslie ends up in Lexington, but some feel N.C. State has made a hard push for him lately; I still think he ends up as a Wildcat, but I'm not sure he's ready to commit at this point

21. Doron Lamb ***** G 6-4/175

Notes: Lamb is a scoring machine at legendary Oak Hill Academy; he holds offers from a highly regard list that includes Arizona, Connecticut, Kansas, Kentucky and Oklahoma

My Thoughts: I like Kentucky's chances of landing Lamb, as well; he has visited UCONN, KU, UK and OU and may visit Arizona; many think that it may come down to UCONN/UK in the end; it has been rumored that he would be working with his family during the Thanksgiving holiday to decide his future

Stay tuned...more to come soon.

2011 Superstar Quincy Miller to Visit Kentucky Friday


Quincy Miller, a multi-talented 6-8 forward, has announced via Twitter that he will be travelling to Kentucky on Friday and will watch the North Carolina game on Saturday. Here is his post on Twitter:

qmillertime Just found out that I'm headed to the UK on Friday and watching the game sat.

Miller is rated the #3 overall prospect in the 2011 Class by Rivals.com. He already has offers from a phenomenal list of schools that includes Kentucky, Wake Forest, Tennessee, South Carolina, Purdue, Oregon, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Michigan, Marquette, Illinois, Alabama, Auburn, Baylor, Charlotte and Duke.



Photo: Scout.com

UK Basketball Recruit C.J. Leslie in Action

Here is a video of Kentucky basketball recruit C.J. Leslie catching a double alley-oop pass for the powerful dunk:

NCAA Division I Basketball Players from Kentucky

Our friend Ken Thornhill has been doing some more excellent basketball research. Today, he sends a list of native Kentucky kids that are currently on NCAA Division I rosters.

Note: If there are others, please post them in the comments section or shoot me an e-mail

EVANSVILLE:
Monie Hudson, 6'0",Jr., Bowling Green, SE Ill. Junior College
BELMONT (Nashville):
Keaton Belcher, 6'9",215,Sr., Pendleton Co.
GEORGETOWN:
Vee Sandford, 6'3", 175, Fr.,Lex.Cathoic
LOUISVILLE:
Preston Knowles, 6'1",190,Jr.,George Roger Clark
Richie Phares,6'7",225,Fr.,Scott Co.
RADFORD:
Evan Faulkner,6'1",175,Fr.,Elliott Co.
VMI:
Michael Sparks,6-4,195,So.,Tates Creek
COASTAL CAROLINA:
Jordan Griffin,6-2,180,So,Edgewood Ky.
LIBERTY:
Jeremy Anderson,6-4,200,So.,Warren Central
PRESBYTERIAN:
Walt Allen,6-4,220,Jr,South Laurel
PENN STATE:
Jeff Brooks,6-8,200,Jr,Doss
NEBRASKA:
Matt Karn,6-3,190,Sr,Philpot Ky.,Shawnee CC
MARSHALL:
Tyler Wilkerson,6-8,240,Sr,Lafayette
BUTLER:
Shelvin Mack,6-3,214,So,Bryan Station
WISCONSIN GREEN BAY:
Greg LaSage,6-8,225,Jr,Elizabethtown
CHICAGO ST.:
David Anderson,6-2,190,L-ville,Harmony Prep.
MIAMI(OH):
Rodney Haddix,6-3,216,Jr,Georgetown,Findlay College Prep.
NORTH CAROLINA A & T:
Coleman Thomas,6-9,235,Jr,J-town HS
Nic Simpson,6-3,190,So,Fort Thomas
ILLINOIS STATE:
Austin Hill,6-1,210,Covington,Southeastern CC
AIR FORCE:
Taylor Stewart, 6-5,190,So,Lex. Catholic
MURRAY STATE:
Jordan Burge,5-11,170,Fr,Mayfield
Jeff McClain,6-6,230,Jr,Hickman,3 Rivers CC
EASTERN KENTUCKY:
Antonio Gilkey,6-1,168,Sr,L-ville,Indiana Southeast
Spencer Perrin,6-5,185,Jr,Danville,Lakeland College
TENNESSEE TECH:
Charles Newton,6-3,Fr,Lex,Fork Union
AUSTIN PEAY:
Eric Mosley,5-10,165,Fr,Lou.Moore
MOREHEAD:
Ty Proffit,6-4,200,So,London, Notre Dame
Maze Stallworth,6-4,215,Sr, John Hardin
Aaron Williams,5-10,175,Fr,Dupont Manual
KENTUCKY:
Jon Hood,6-6,195,Fr, North Hopkins
Mark Krebs,6-5,208,Sr,Newport, Thomas Moore
Darius Miller,6-7,223,So,Mason Co.
TENNESSEE:
Scotty Hopson,6-7,185,So,University Heights
VANDERBILT:
Aaron Noll,So,6-7,220,Covington Catholic
Jordon Smart,Fr,6-6,180 Lex.Catholic
GEORGIA:
Albert Jackson,6-11,265,Sr,Earlington,Oak Hill
MISS. ST.:
Twany Beckham,So,6-5,190,L-ville, New Hampton School
Riley Benock,Jr,6-4,180, Meade Co.
TEXAS ARLINGTON:
Jordon Reves,Fr,6-10,240,J-town
ALA.ST.:
Chris Duncan,6-8,200,Jr,Fern Creek
MISS. VALLEY:
Joshua Mack,6-0,185,Jr,Hopkinsville,Lambuth U.
SOUTHERN:
Blake Sanford,6-4,185,Jr,Lex.,St. Catherine
IUPUI:
Leroy Nobles,6-5,185,Fr,L-ville,Harmony Prep
WESTERN KENTUCKY:
Steffphon Pettigrew,6-5,231,Jr,E-town
Jamal Crook,6-3,165,Fr,L-ville,Bridgton Academy
AJ Slaughter,6-3,180,Sr, Shelby Co.

John Wall May be the "Next Big Thing"


An article on BleacherReport.com this morning states that Kentucky's John Wall "appears to be the next big thing." Here is an excerpt from the article, which is appropriately titled John Wall: Coming Soon to a NBA Arena Near You:

I know he's only played in five college basketball games, but University of Kentucky freshman John Wall appears to be the "next big thing."

The 6'4" point guard is currently averaging 19.8 points, 6.6 assists, 4.0 rebounds, and 1.8 steals per game.

It's very likely he will enter the 2010 NBA Draft as most experts have had him going No. 1 overall before he even stepped foot onto a college court.

Right now, the teams with the best chance of landing Wall this summer include the New Jersey Nets, Minnesota Timberwolves, and Utah Jazz (via the New York Knicks).

Friday, November 27, 2009

Survey Says: Kentucky Wildcats Will Lose 6-9 Games


I have spent the better part of the last 2 days polling everyone I have encountered - from my wife, to my family, to random strangers on the Internet - with a simple question about the Kentucky Wildcats basketball team. I just asked my 100th person his answer to this question:

How many losses will the Kentucky Wildcats basketball team suffer in 2009-10?

The choices were:

a) 0, undefeated season and a national championship
b) 1-5
c) 6-9
d) 10+

I asked this question to 100 people and here are the results:

a) 4
b) 24
c) 72
d) 0

What does this mean?

- 72% of the sample group think UK will lose 6-9 games this season
- 96% of those polled think the Cats will lose 1-9 games
- There, of course, are those 4 members of Big Blue Nation that just can't accept a single loss
- Interestingly, not a single person think Kentucky will continue the trend of 10-loss seasons

Union College Picks Up High-Scoring Win Over Berea


Union College 104
Berea College 97

Final from Barbourville, Kentucky

Game Recap from Union:

Union College had just enough firepower to outlast visiting Berea (Ky.) College to win 104-97 shootout Friday.

The Bulldogs (4-4 overall) shot 67.3 percent (37-of-55) from the field and went 10-for-19 (52.6 percent) from behind the arc, but it was almost not nearly enough as the Mountaineers overcame a 21-point, second half deficit to make things interesting down the stretch.

Up 58-44 at the half, Union went on a 7-0 run to build what seemed to be a comfortable 65-44 cushion just 34 seconds into the period. However, Berea steadily chipped away at the deficit and eventually pulled within 76-69 after a Mikah Turner 3-pointer with 13:31 to play.

The Bulldogs regrouped and used a 7-2 surge to take an 83-71 lead with 10:48 remaining.
Yet, Berea (5-3 overall) kept battling. After cutting the margin down to two, Rudy Evans drained a 3-pointer with 4:48 to go to give Berea a 92-91 lead.

Then, with the score tied at 94-94, Darrel Jackson (Jonesboro, Ark.) scored back-to-back buckets as part of a 6-0 Bulldog run to put Union ahead 100-94 with 1:09 to play. The Bulldogs accounted for four of the final seven points in the game to seal the 104-97 decision.

In all, six Bulldogs scored in double figures with Jackson's 19 points leading the way. Dan Penick (Ludlow, Ky.) and Beau Brown (Athens, Tenn.) followed with 18 and 17 points, respectively. Penick was a perfect 3-for-3 from long range. Payton Ponzer (Independence, Ky.) chipped in 14 points, while Jerome Carmichael (Newport, Tenn.) and Josh Hurd (Independence, Ky.) contributed 13 and 12 points, respectively.

Evans led Berea with 30 points with Turner knocking in 29 points. Prince Stewart added 15 points. The Mountaineers finished the game making 59.7 percent (37-of-62) of their shots. However, Berea hit just 11-of-21 free throws (52.4 percent) on the night.

Union outrebounded Berea 29-25, and the Bulldogs dished out 30 assists.

For much of the first half, the score remained tight with neither team holding more than a six-point edge. Tied at 35-35, Union began to pull away as it used a 23-6 run to open up a 58-41 cushion en route to a 58-44 halftime lead.

During the rally, Hurd accounted for eight points, including six in a row.

The Bulldogs connected on 73.3 percent (22-of-30) of their shots in the first half and went 8-for-12 (66.7 percent) from 3-point range.

Union returns to action Saturday when it plays host to Indiana University Southeast at 6 p.m.

Pictured: Jerome Carmichael (Newport, Tenn.)

Kentucky Basketball Will Hold Open Practice in Louisville

No. 5 Kentucky will hold an open practice at Freedom Hall on Sunday ahead of Monday night's game against UNC-Asheville.

The Wildcats will hold a walkthrough practice at the arena starting at 5:30 p.m., with gates opening an hour earlier.

Kentucky (6-0) is off to its best start in several years under new coach John Calipari. The Wildcats won the Cancun Challenge on Wednesday by holding off Stanford in overtime.

Calipari said he has plans for Freedom Hall going forward. The venue has been the longtime home of the University of Louisville basketball team, but the Cardinals will begin play in a downtown arena next year.

Calipari joked over the summer Kentucky should drape Freedom Hall in blue, and he hopes to bring back high-profile opponents to Kentucky's yearly trek to the state's largest city.

Source: Associated Press

UK Basketball: No Cracks in Kentucky's Wall


Excerpt of article from BleacherReport.com:

Potential, talent, tremendous upside: all aptly describe the Kentucky Wildcats this season.

It's no coincidence that the same directly applies to freshman sensation John Wall.

So coach John Calipari's dribble-drive offense is still eluding the newer members of Kentucky's young team. So the Wildcats haven't put together the pieces on defense. So team chemistry isn't quite there yet.

Doesn't matter, because there are no significant cracks in Wall's game.

He leads Kentucky in average minutes played with 38 a game, points at 19.8 a game, and assists at 6.6 per game. His field goal percentage for the season is greater than 50 percent. He's scoring almost two points per shot.

He's the reason why the NBA should reconsider its one-year rule, which prevented Wall from entering the draft last summer. Because right now, Wall is the only thing holding Kentucky's perfect record together.

Plenty of Eyes Watching 2010 PG Brandon Knight

There will be plenty of coaches watching 2010 PG Brandon Knight during the next couple of months leading up to his much-anticipate college decision. Here is an excerpt of an article discussing Knight:

College basketball coaches will be watching Brandon Knight's every move the next four months.

Knight, a senior at Fort Lauderdale Pine Crest High, is widely considered the top point guard and top overall player in the Class of 2010 by recruiting services. Knight has visited Connecticut, Kentucky, Kansas and, most recently, Florida; he also has Syracuse and Miami on his list of favorites.

Since Knight's not expected to make a final decision concerning college until the spring signing period, the interest in Knight's play should only increase. The Panthers split two exhibition games and open their regular-season next Tuesday.

Complete Article

NOTE: Several insiders believe that Florida has propelled itself to the top of Knight's list after pulling out all the stops during his visit.

Kentucky Wildcats Basketball: 2008-09 vs. 2009-10


Ken Thornhill, a good friend of mine from Hardinsburg e-mailed a 6-game comparison of last season's Kentucky Wildcats in comparison to this season's team.

Here is a breakdown of each team after the season's first six games:

2008-09

Record: 4-2
Point per game: 75
Opponents points per game: 67
Turnovers per game: 23
Field goal %: 50%
Notes: Lost to VMI in a major upset; lost to eventual national champion North Carolina

2009-10:

Record: 6-0
Points per game: 81
Opponents points per game: 66
Turnovers per game: 19
Field goal %: 51%
Notes: Won Cancun Classic; Only BCS win over Stanford in OT

Hampton Inn/Worth Insurance Owensboro Classic

The second annual Hampton Inn/Worth Insurance Owensboro Classic tips off tonight at the Sportscenter.

The men's basketball doubleheader today and Saturday gives people a chance to see Kentucky Wesleyan College and Brescia University in the same building.

"It's a good opportunity for everybody to see us and Brescia," KWC coach Todd Lee said. "For Brescia, it's like they get to have two free home games."

Hampton Inn/Worth Insurance Owensboro Classic Schedule:

Friday

7:00 p.m. Kentucky Wesleyan vs. Lambuth
9:00 p.m. Brescia vs. Alaska-Fairbanks

Saturday

7:00 p.m. Brescia vs. Lambuth
9:00 p.m. Kentucky Wesleyan vs. Alaska-Fairbanks

Article About the Event

Junior Class Ranked by NBADraft.net; Patrick Patterson #4


NBADraft.net has updated its 2011 Class projections and there are several familiar names on the list. Kentucky's Patrick Patterson is ranked #4 on the list and a pair of ex-Wildcats are projected first rounders. Here is the top 10 players on the list and a few other notables:

1. Wesley Johnson, Syracuse
2. Evan Turner, Ohio State
3. Cole Aldrich, Kansas
4. Patrick Patterson, Kentucky
5. Larry Sanders, VCU
6. Craig Brackins, Iowa State
7. Kyle Singler, Duke
8. James Anderson, Oklahoma State
9. Durrell Summers, Michigan State
10. Gani Lawal, Georgia Tech
18. Derrick Jasper, UNLV
25. Matt Pilgrim, Oklahoma State

Honorable Mention:

Kenneth Faried, Morehead State
Derrick Caracter, UTEP

UK Recruit C.J. Leslie on Display This Weekend


Kentucky 2010 recruit C.J. Leslie will be on display against several talented teams at Word of God Christian Academy's holiday event today and tomorrow. Several of the Raleigh area's top talents will be participating in the event:

- C.J. Leslie: 6-8 forward, Word of God, Uncommitted; vs. Monroe Jireh at 7:30 p.m. tonight

- Ian Miller: 6-2 guard, Fayetteville United Faith, Florida State; vs. Wayne Country Day, 6:oo p.m. tonight

- Reco McCarter: 6-6 forward, Wayne Country Day, Virginia Commonwealth; vs. Fayetteville United Faith, 6:00 p.m. tonight

Basketball Recruiting: Is Brandon Knight a Gator Lean?

There is a growing rumor that Brandon Knight, the top overall player in the 2010 recruiting class, is leaning towards the Florida Gators. Knight appears to be really high on the Florida program and head coach Billy Donovan.

Here are some comments from Knight about the schools that are recruiting him from an article on CoachesAid.com:

Kansas: "I like the atmosphere, a lot of nice people. Something I don't like? Tough to say that about Kansas. It's tough to say about any school. I probably don't like that it's in the Midwest. [Fans] don't see it as much, so they probably don't get a good perception of it. That's maybe a downfall of it."

Florida: "Something I like is that it's right near home and it's a great place to study and get your school work done also. Something I don't like about it … that's tough for Florida."

Kentucky: "Something I don't like is that they're just trying to rebuild their program. I'm not quite too sure where they could end up going with it. Something I do like is they have a good new coach, a lot of good new recruits and it looks like they're headed in the right direction.

Connecticut: "Something I do like is the support they get from the fans. They're not too crazy. Something I don't like is how cold it gets."

Syracuse: "How cold it gets, that's something I don't like. I'm a Floridian. I just like the fact they have a great coach also with a lot of tradition, a lot of history. I think it's a great school too."

Miami: "I like the fact they're right next to home. Great team. I love Coach Haith. I love him as a person and as a coach. Something I don't like about Miami is that they're not really respected as basketball powerhouse."

Interesting Thoughts from Brandon Knight

UK's John Wall Heads a Talented Era in North Carolina

Excerpt of article from One Entertainment:

Early in the season the college basketball world is a buzz on freshman John Wall. Everyone heard the hype, now after 5 games they realize it wasn't hype at all. It was more than truth. Kid has ice water veins twice already he has keyed the Kentucky Wildcats in the final moments of two crucial wins. An at the buzzer step back jumper against Miami (OH) for the win, and tonight in Cancun (whats up with the chandeliers?) facing Stanford he hit a crucial jumper to tie in the waining moments and tied the game with 2 seconds left with 2 pressure filled free throws. If you are a hater check his stat line, it doesn't lie. 19.8 ppg 6.6 apg 4.2 rebs and 2 steals. Better than average. Better than good. Better than Rose, better than Evans. John heads a new front in basketball emerging from the state of North Carolina. Last summer John and Ryan Kelly(Duke) teamed to provide a devastating combo. The state is putting out absurd talent. This years class of 2010 has at minimun 8 top tier impact players as of right now.

Complete Article

One Entertainment Video of Wall:

Louisville Cardinals Basketball: More on D.J. Wright

I wondered how Louisville and Rick Pitino could still be recruiting D.J. Wright after he signed with Louisiana Tech and now I know. Wright did not sign a letter-of-intent with Tech, but rather a grant-in-aid. That leaves a player with the freedom to break his commitment. Here is an excerpt of an article on the subject:

Maybe D.J. Wright is signed and sealed, if not actually delivered, to Louisiana Tech. It sure seems like it. But according to the latest report we came across, he did not sign a binding national letter-of-intent with Louisiana Tech but rather a grant-in-aid. The latter allows a player the freedom to honor his 'commitment' or not.

Complete Article

Good Advice: Don't Bet the House on Kentucky Basketball


Covers.com points out that the Kentucky Wildcats are not a good team to gamble on this season - at least not yet. Here is an excerpt from an article that says the Wildcats have covered the spread just two times in their five games:

With the whitewash to the program, there are bound to be some growing pains – even with a guy like John Wall. But while the word “patience” may calm those in Kentucky, “patience” means something entirely different to sports bettors. It means profits.

The Wildcats have covered in just two of their five lined games and would have fell short of the spread if books had tagged their 102-92 win over the Bearkats with odds last week. Kentucky faces NC-Asheville in what will be a unlined game before taking on another team in a similar situation, North Carolina, next weekend.

Betting against programs dealing with a turnover in talent, on the floor or on the sideline, is a love-hate relationship. You've got to know when to fade and know when to play. Here are a few more programs that are ripe with fade value now, but should be considered a solid play once they work out the kinks come conference competition.

Thankful that John Calipari is UK's Basketball Coach

Jeff Goodman of FoxSports.com lists ten things that he's grateful for this college basketball season. Here is #10 on his list:

10. John Calipari going from Memphis to Kentucky: Now those diehard, insane Wildcats fans finally have something to cheer about instead of constantly arguing with me when I said that Billy Clyde Gillispie wasn't the right man for the job.

And #5:

5. Many of the top players in the country this season are also terrific kids: Whether it's freshmen such as John Wall (Kentucky) and Derrick Favors (Georgia Tech) or veterans Luke Harangody (Notre Dame), Kyle Singler (Duke) and Evan Turner (Ohio State), we're talking about quality people.

Complete List

How Fast is Kentucky's John Wall?

Stanford head coach and former Duke Blue Devil star Johnny Dawkins referenced John Wall as one of the fastest players he's ever witnessed...at ANY level. How fast is John Wall? Here is a video that illustrates Dawkins' point:

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Colleges Recruiting Greenup County's Trey Williams


Trey Williams, a 6'7" junior guard/forward from Greenup County, is gaining the interest of several college coaches.

He has received a high level of interest from Marshall, Southern Illinois, Xavier, and Virginia Commonwealth.

Williams has already visited Marshall and he really liked their facilities and the coaching staff.

Trey is looking forward to a successful season and hopefully leading the Musketeers, who are coached by Tim Fraley, to a District and Regional Championship before he graduates next year.

The Musketeers begin their season December 1 at Paintsville.

A Break from Basketball to say Happy Thanksgiving


I want to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving today. Remember to give thanks for what you have and the people you love. Also remember that everything you eat today is fat free and low calorie. God bless everyone!

What is Thanksgiving Day?

Thanksgiving Day is a harvest festival celebrated primarily in Canada and the United States. Traditionally, it is a time to give thanks for the harvest and express gratitude in general. The Thanksgiving Day service is held annually at the Pieterskerk in Leiden. While perhaps religious in origin, Thanksgiving is now primarily identified as a secular holiday.[citation needed]

The date and location of the first Thanksgiving celebration is a topic of modest contention. The traditional "first Thanksgiving" is the celebration that occurred at the site of Plymouth Plantation, in 1621. The Plymouth celebration occurred early in the history of what would become one of the original thirteen colonies that became the United States. The celebration became an important part of the American myth by the 1800s. This Thanksgiving, modeled after celebrations that were commonplace in contemporary Europe, is generally regarded as America's first. Elementary school teacher Robyn Gioia has argued that the earliest attested "thanksgiving" celebration in what is now the United States was celebrated by the Spanish on September 8, 1565 in what is now Saint Augustine, Florida. Today, Thanksgiving is celebrated on the second Monday of October in Canada and on the fourth Thursday of November in the United States. Thanksgiving dinner is held on this day, usually as a gathering of family members and friends (source: Wikipedia).

Feliz Dia de Accion de Gracias for Kentucky Basketball


Kentucky 73
Stanford 65 F/OT

Final from Cancun Challenge in Cancun, Mexico

After an effort that John Calipari will surely use as a learning experience, the Kentucky Wildcats managed to do just enough to send the Cancun Challenge championship game into overtime. In the overtime period, they put Stanford away to win the game 73-65.

Game Recap from ESPN: Freshman sensation John Wall scored a season-best 23 points, including clutch shots in the final minute that sent the game to overtime, and No. 5 Kentucky closed with an eight-point run for a 73-65 victory over gritty Stanford on Wednesday night in the championship game of the Cancun Challenge at the Moon Palace Resort.

Playing his fifth college game, Wall capped a big night with a slam dunk at the final horn, setting off a wild celebration by Kentucky players before a crowd of 1,425.

Wall hit a 12-foot fadeaway jumper from the right wing to tie the score at 61 with 30.6 seconds remaining in regulation, then two free throws with 2.4 seconds left to send the game to overtime.
Fellow freshman Eric Bledsoe made an NBA-length 3-pointer with 33 seconds to go that gave Kentucky a 69-65 lead it did not relinquish.

Notes:

- Great performance for Ramon Harris tonight; he was everywhere and ultimately was a difference-maker for Kentucky tonight
- DeMarcus Cousins is always walking a fine line between being the best big man in the country and having a crazy meltdown
- Cousins looked like he just discovered a ghost before he shot his free throws near the end of the game; he missed the first and then called his own number by attempting to miss the second intentionally; the result - he went over the back on the attempted rebound and fouled out of the game, leading to a verbal tirade from Coach Calipari
- Dodson returned to the lineup but was ineffective in the game
- John Wall scored 23 points and two of the most pressure-packed free throws you'll ever see - down 2 points with 2.4 seconds on the clock
- Patterson quietly grabbed another double-double with 12 and 11
- UK's bench was largely ineffective again tonight; in fact, Harris is the only bench player that had any production in the game; no other reserves scored
- Most of the game felt like Kentucky was in "siesta" mode, but they earned the victory and at the end of the day, that's the objective; Kentucky now sits at 6-0 with an apparent easy game coming up against UNC-Asheville
- The Cancun Challenge is weird in more ways than I can describe: the way the games are setup is strange, the final 2 games are played in a resort ballroom, the locker rooms are like partitioned off hallways, the logos are terrible (hence my addition above), the television coverage is on CBS College Sports (which surely obtained their highest ratings ever tonight, I could go on...but you get the point
- I can picture Billy Gillispie and Bill Self sitting at a bar having a barrel of laughs as they watched tonight's game

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Louisville Travels to Las Vegas for "Business" Trip


The Louisville Cardinals will spend Thanksgiving in Vegas as they prepare for Saturday's battle with UNLV. Here is an excerpt of an article from Courier-Journal.com:

The Cardinals headed to Las Vegas on Wednesday and will spend a couple days prepping for Saturday's game against Nevada Las Vegas. The team is staying on the Las Vegas Strip and will have Thanksgiving dinner together, but this isn't a social trip.

“We're there for business,” coach Rick Pitino said. “We have a great respect for UNLV. We're going out there to play basketball. We're going to practice and have individual instruction, so we'll tie the guys up with basketball.”


NOTE: Remember, former Kentucky Wildcat PG Derrick Jasper is the starting PG at UNLV now.

Eastern Kentucky Fights Back for Tough Win

Eastern Kentucky 74
Texas-San Antonio 72

Final from CBE Classic in Richmond, Kentucky


Game Recap from RichondRegister.com:

Justin Stommes stepped up and hit a huge three-pointer with 12 seconds left and the defense held tight for the remaining time as Eastern Kentucky University completed a double-digit comeback against the Roadrunners.

EKU handed Texas-San Antonio its first loss of the season, 74-72, in their final game of the CBE Classic Wednesday at McBrayer Arena.

“Our focus in the second half was just about fighting for this game. We were fighting in the second half,” EKU coach Jeff Neubauer said. “It was about fighting for that extra rebound. I’m really proud of my guys because of their effort. I’m certainly proud of Justin Stommes made a huge shot. It was about having some fight in us when the game was on the line.

Complete Recap

Louisville Basketball Looking at Another JUCO Prospect


Scout.com is reporting that Louisville basketball coach Rick Pitino has his recruiting eyes on D.J. Wright, a 6-7 forward at Mount San Jacinto C.C.


Rivals.com reports that Wright committed to Louisiana Tech on Monday of this week, which makes the news of Louisville's interest surprising.

Last week, Pitino ventured to Florida to watch Ricardo Ratliffe, another JUCO standout.

Ratliffe is rated as the top overall JUCO player in America by Rivals and Wright is ranked #8.

Sam Bowie Breaks Color Barrier at Country Club


Sam Bowie has been accepted as the first African American member at Lexington's Idle Hour Country Club. Here is an excerpt of an article from Kentucky.com:

Former UK Basketball player Sam Bowie said Wednesday that he and his family have been accepted for membership at Idle Hour Country Club, making him the club's first African American member.

"I'm very flattered, very honored, very appreciative," said Bowie. "This wasn't about me making history," said the retired Los Angeles Lakers player. But, he added, "whether I ...want it to be a historical event or not, it is."

Although Idle Hour's white clubhouse, green golf course and black fence are clearly visible to thousands who drive on Richmond Road every day, until Bowie's acceptance, it remained a symbol of exclusivity and old divisions based on race and class in Lexington.

Society's dictates changed more quickly than the club's. For example, when Otis Singletary was president of the University of Kentucky from 1969 to 1987, the university paid his dues at the club, but by 1987, a group of faculty members asked President David Roselle not to join because of perceived discriminatory practices.

Neither former President Charles Wethington nor current President Lee T. Todd Jr. belong to the club. (Wethington stepped down from the Lexington Club, a downtown dining establishment, in 2002 after he found out it had no black members.)

The Lexington Club now has black members.

At the time, UK officials said the university had an unwritten rule against business dealings with any discriminatory organizations.

That unwritten rule, many believe, is why UK basketball coach John Calipari joined the Lexington Country Club despite buying a house just a block away from Idle Hour. But with Bowie's inclusion, it's possible that UK would change its unwritten policy.

Still No Word on Patrick Patterson and Ramon Harris

There is still no official word on Kentucky's Patrick Patterson and Ramon Harris and it appears that both are game time decisions for tonight's Cancun Challenge Championship game.

Patterson suffered what John Calipari described as a "mild ankle sprain" in yesterday's game against Cleveland State. He sat out the majority of the second half after the injury.

Harris landed awkwardly and tweaked his knee a bit. He returned to yesterday's game after the injury but is still listed as day to day.

According to UK's media notes, both players must pass a re-evaluation of injuries before being permitted to play tonight.

UPDATE: Matt Matt of TCP just stated via Twitter that both players are warming up with the team and appear fine.

Darnell Dodson is a Key Witness in Battery Case

Kentucky's Darnell Dodson is described as a key witness in a felony battery case involving his former Miami-Dade teammate Trevor Mbakwe.

For the record, I do not believe this is related in any way to Dodson's lack of playing time recently.

Excerpt of article from StarTribune.com:

Mbakwe's roommate at Miami Dade community college, Kentucky guard Darnell Dodson, is a key witness in the case. He's averaging 12.0 points per game for the Wildcats.

Mbakwe's lawyer, Gregory Samms, encountered unexpected challenges when he tried to secure Dodson's testimony earlier this month. That was when the trial was still scheduled for Dec. 14.

Samms "is having extreme difficulty getting through the school administration and the office of Coach John Calipari in order to attempt to arrange for Mr. Dodson to be available during the week of the 14th in Miami," according to court documents.

Complete Article

Kentucky Basketball Recruit to Visit Kansas Tonight

The #4 ranked player in the ESPN Terrific 25, Perry Ellis, will be making his way to Lawrence today to see the #1 ranked Kansas Jayhawks take on the Oakland Grizzlies inside Allen Fieldhouse.

Ellis is also being recruited by the Kentucky Wildcats.

Article

Derrick Miller Pleads Guilty in Kentucky Tickets Scam

Former UK basketball star Derrick Miller pleaded guilty Wednesday in a Clark County ticket scam case.

Miller, who was originally charged with theft, pleaded guilty to criminal intent after police say he took about $5,000 from two Clark County businessmen for UK basketball tickets he never produced.

The plea deal requires Miller to pay $2,500 in restitution and he will also enroll in a Louisville rehab program through the Volunteers of America.

Miller's lawyer said that his client had developed a drug problem that led him to his actions.

Miller is accused of selling UK tickets he didn't have to people in at least five counties across the state. Another former UK player, Ed Davender is also accused of selling UK tickets he didn't produce. At this point, however, police don't think the two worked together.

Source

Site Names Rick Pitino Its "Turkey of the Year"


Article from AnOpionOnSports.com:

As we near Thanksgiving Day 2009, my vote for "Turkey of the Year" goes to Louisville head basketball coach Rick Pitino. The married hoops coach found himself square in the cross hairs of an extortion attempt following a 2003 after-hours affair at a restaurant. The woman (shown above with 'Slick Rick') later married the strength coach at Louisville. Go figure. She, Karen Sypher, faces federal charges. Rick just faces the consequences of his actions with himself, his family, and his friends.


SI.com ranks its Top 30 Turkeys of the Year and coming in at 20 of 30 is both Rick Pitino and Karen Sypher.

Patrick Patterson Questionable for Tonight?

There has been no official injury update on Kentucky forward Patrick Patterson, but early indications are that he is at the very least questionable for tonight's Cancun Challenge Championship game against Stanford.

Brett Dawson and Matt May have both reported on Twitter today that Patterson has been spotted in a walking boot today:

Here is Dawson's Tweet:

wildcats Patrick Patterson in a walking boot on Moon Palace resort today. Still don't know his status for tonight's game against Stanford.

And May's:

tcpmay Patrick Patterson just walked by with a walking boot all the way up to his knee. Could be precautionary, but could be more.

Follow AllKYHoops.com on Twitter

Ex-Wildcats Making Headlines in ABA Basketball

In the ABA Tip-Off Classic Consolation Game Saturday night, the Bluegrass Stallions defeated the Defending ABA Champion Kentucky Bisons in an overtime affair 98-91. Lukasz Obrzut led the Stallions in scoring with 21 points.

ABA Tip-Off Classic ALL-CLASSIC TEAM:

- Jon Rogers (Mavs)
- Mike Crain (Mavs)
- Josh Copperwood (Stars)
- Brandon Stockton (Bisons)
- Lukasz Obrzut (Stallions)


Tip-Off Classic MVP: Lamar Castile (SETX Mavericks)

ABA Power Rankings (Top 10):

1. SETX Mavericks
2. Music City Stars
3. Chicago Steam
4. Bluegrass Stallions
5. Kentucky Bisons

6. Jersey Express
7. Texas Fuel
8. NY Red Riders
9. San Francisco Rumble
10. Mississippi Blues

Former Kentucky Wildcats in the ABA:

- Brandon Stockton, Kentucky Bisons
- Lukasz Obrzut, Bluegrass Stallions
- Bobby Perry, Bluegrass Stallions
- Ravi Moss, Bluegrass Stallions
- Wayne Turner, Bluegrass Stallions
- Kyle Macy, Bluegrass Stallions (Head Coach)

Bellarmine Ranked #7 in First NABC Basketball Poll

NABC/Division II Coaches Poll

(Nov. 24, 2009 – Regular season poll #1)

Record Points Pvs

1. BYU-Hawaii (8 first place votes) 0-0 200 1
2. Central Missouri 2-0 187 5
3. Valdosta State, Ga. 3-0 179 7
4. Florida Southern 1-0 160 8
5. Bentley, Mass. 3-0 159 9
6. Augusta State, Ga. 2-0 158 10
7. Bellarmine, Ky. 2-1 153 2
8. Southwest Baptist, Mo. 5-1 148 3
9. St. Cloud State, Minn. 2-0 136 11
10. Findlay, Ohio 2-1 120 4
11. Indiana, Pa. 2-0 119 18 12. Metropolitan State, Colo. 2-0 115 12 13. Kutztown, Pa. 1-0 104 16 14. Winona State, Minn. 3-0 94 20 15. Southwest Minnesota State 3-0 87 22 16. Rollins, Fla. 3-0 64 24 17. Cal Poly Pomona 0-1 62 6 18. Grand Valley State, Mich. 1-1 48 13 19. Tusculum, Tenn. 2-1 41 14 20. LeMoyne, N.Y. 3-0 39 NR 21. West Virginia State 2-0 37 NR 22. Humboldt State, Calif. 1-1 29 21 23. Arkansas Tech 3-0 27 NR 24. Seattle Pacific, Wash. 2-0 23 NR 25. Drury, Mo. 2-0 19 NR

Article About Former WKU Recruit Terrence Boyd

Excerpt of an article by TheMooreAmerican.com:

Boyd was released from the team without playing in a single game.

"Terrence Boyd is no longer with the Hilltopper program," McDonald said. "Unfortunately things didn't work out with Terrence, but we wish him the best with his future."

This follows a familiar pattern for Boyd. After making his name as a Norman High freshman, he bounced around to different schools and academies throughout the country. Boyd played his freshman season at Norman High School before transferring to Oak Hill Academy (Va.) as a sophomore. He came back to Norman before he was ruled ineligible by the OSSAA. He left for San Diego High School, but was forced to sit out due to transfer rules.

Who knows what he waslooking for, but he never lasted longer than a season at any one stop after leaving NHS and never played another minute of high school basketball. At each place controversy and problems were left in his wake.

Complete Article

Darnell Dodson Set to Return Tonight?


It appears that Kentucky's Darnell Dodson, who has missed several games due to unknown reasons, will make his return to the court tonight against Stanford.

I first learned of this yesterday from Jeff Goodman of FoxSports.com, who said a source told him that Dodson would be returning. Here is a message that Goodman sent via Twitter yesterday:

goodmanonfox I was told by a source that KY's Darnell Dodson been out last 3 games for team violation; may return tomorrow vs. Stanford.

This morning, ESPN posted the rumor on their "Insider" section.

Hopefully, Dodson returns and uses this as a learning experience.

In two games this season, he has averaged 12.0 points, 2.5 rebounds and 1.5 assists. He is also shooting 5-12 from the 3-point line.

Homecoming for Eastern Kentucky's Josh Taylor


Eastern Kentucky's Josh Taylor was able to play close to home with the Colonels travelled to Pittsburgh last week. Here is an excerpt of an article from YoursouthHills.com about Taylor's "homecoming":

At most schools, homecoming is in the early fall. But for Brentwood High School graduate Josh Taylor, homecoming was last Thursday.

Taylor, the starting center on the Eastern Kentucky men's basketball team, led the Colonials into an early season nonconference game against Pitt at the Petersen Events Center.

During his high school days, Taylor often dreamed of playing college basketball in Pittsburgh. Taylor finally got his chance last week.

"It was exciting to come home and play in front of my family and friends," Taylor said after EKU's 71-60 loss. "We played hard."

That "home game" was a long overdue reward for Taylor. As a high school senior, he was such a prized recruit for Eastern Kentucky that the team's coach, Jeff Neubauer, promised him that the Colonials would play a game in Pittsburgh as part of his recruiting pitch.

"Josh is an important shooter and player in our system," Neubauer said. "He has shown great senior leadership."

While the Colonials lost in Taylor's long-awaited return to the Pittsburgh hardwood, he was impressive, as usual.

Taylor logged 35 minutes and was tied for second on the team in scoring with 11 points, including a team-high three 3-pointers. He also grabbed four rebounds.

Pitt coach Jamie Dixon left the game quite impressed with both Eastern Kentucky, which competes in the Ohio Valley Conference, and Taylor.

"They're really a very hard team to play, especially in the first weeks of the season," Dixon said. "They hit some tough shots, some tough three's. They're going to be a good team in their conference.

"Taylor is a very good player; he's a good shooter. I'm glad to see a local kid have a great career."

Kentucky on List of Top 5 Frontcourts in College Basketball


Yahoo Sports ranks its top 5 frontcourts in college basketball and they list Kentucky at #4:

4. Kentucky – Patrick Patterson, is a seasoned junior who averaged 17.9 points and 9.3 rebounds last season. Freshman DeMarcus Cousins is a 6-foot-11, 270-pound standout who plays with a mean streak. Both players could be top-15 picks in the next NBA draft. What other unit can say that? Still, depth is an issue.

Their Top 5:

1. North Carolina
2. Texas
3. Kansas
4. Kentucky
5. Georgia Tech


My Thoughts: They seem to forget all about Daniel Orton, who would easily start at most high-major programs. They also mention depth as an issue without considering not only Orton, but also Perry Stevenson and Josh Harrellson.

C-J's Kentucky High School Basketball Preview


The Louisville Courier-Journal has released its Kentucky high school basketball preview. Here are some excerpts of the preview:

Coaches' Top 25 Teams (First Place Votes):

1. Holmes (87)
2. Scott County (24)
3. Eastern (6)
4. Shelby Valley (1)
5. Clark County (1)
6. Christian County
7. Warren Central
8. Lexington Catholic
9. Jeffersontown
10. Tates Creek
11-25. Ballard, Mason County, Pleasure Ridge Park (1), Bowling Green, Shelby County, Iroquois, Boone County, Bryan Station, Central, West Jessamine, Trinity, North Hardin, Graves County, Knott County Central, Male

Coaches' Top 25 Players:

1. Ricardo Johnson, Holmes (53) 6-4 Sr. 11.0 Ohio
2. Ge-lawn Guyn, Scott County (24) 6-3 Sr. 15.4 N/A
3. Elijah Pittman, Holmes (10) 6-7 Sr. 14.2 N/A
4. Elisha Justice, Shelby Valley (8) 5-11 Sr. 17.5 Louisville (walk-on)
5. Chad Jackson, Scott County (4) 6-4 Sr. 12.4 N/A
6. Josh Sewell, Trinity (3) 6-4 Sr. 15.2 Miami (Ohio)
7. Donovan Gibbs, Iroquois (1) 6-7 Sr. 15.6 IUPUI
8. Chane Behanan, Bowling Green (6) 6-7 Jr. 12.6 N/A
9. Dakotah Euton, Scott County 6-8 Sr. 15.0 Akron
10. Jarrod Polson, West Jessamine (2) 5-10 Sr. 19.9 N/A
11. George Fant, Warren Central 6-6 Jr. 13.0 N/A
12. Aaron Watts, McCreary Central 6-2 Sr. 23.9 N/A
13. Robbie Stenzel, Clark County 6-4 Jr. 19.0 N/A
14. Shaquille Wilson, Christian County (1) 6-4 Sr. 11.1 N/A
15. Vinny Zollo, Clark County 6-8 Jr. 16.0 N/A
16. Remy Abell, Eastern 6-3 Jr. 10.9 N/A
17. Thomas Jackson, Jeffersontown 5-11 Sr. 15.0 N/A
18. Curtis Washington, Elizabethtown 6-9 Sr. 8.0 Southern Cal
19. Travis Johnston, Grayson County 5-10 Sr. 17.0 N/A
20. Timmy Knipp, Elliott County 6-7 Jr. 15.0 N/A
21. Tate Cox, Knott County Central 6-0 Sr. 20.7 N/A
22. Josh Whitaker, Hazard 6-0 Sr. 15.6 N/A
23. Matt St. John, South Laurel 6-8 Sr. 21.9 N/A
24. Delquan Thomas, Eastern 6-2 Sr. 13.2 N/A
25. Ryan Fucci, Tates Creek 6-2 Jr. 15.0 N/A

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Kentucky Will Battle Pac 10 Foe Stanford in Cancun


Kentucky Wildcats (5-0) vs.
Stanford Cardinal (3-2)

Championship Game of 2009 Cancun Challenge


When: Wednesday, 9:30 p.m.
Where: Cancun, Mexico
Television: CBS College Sports
Summary: The SEC meets the Pac 10 in a battle for the championship of the 2009 Cancun Challenge

How they got here:

Kentucky:

vs. Sam Houston State - Win - 102-92
vs. Rider - Win - 92-63
vs. Cleveland State - Win - 73-49

Stanford:

vs. Oral Roberts - Loss - 81-83
vs. Florida A&M - Win - 99-69
vs. Virginia - Win - 57-52

Probable Lineups:

Kentucky:

G John Wall
G Eric Bledsoe
F Darius Miller
F Patrick Patterson
C DeMarcus Cousins

Key reserves:

Daniel Orton
Jon Hood
Ramon Harris
Josh Harrellson
Perry Stevenson

Key Injuries:

- Patrick Patterson (Ankle) Day-to-day
- Ramon Harris (Knee) Day-to-day

Stanford:

G Jarrett Mann - 8.4 PPG; 6.0 APG; 16-30 FT (53.3%)
G Jeremy Green - 13.8 PPG; 4.6 RPG; 13-33 3PT (39.4%)
G/F Landry Fields - 23.0 PPG; 9.2 RPG; 7-15 3PT (46.7%); 2.0 SPG; 3.0 APG
F Jack Trotter - 6.8 PPG, 4.8 RPG
F Andrew Zimmermann - 4.0 PPG; 4.2 RPG

Key reserves:

Drew Shiller - 10.0 PPG; 12-24 3PT (50.0%)
Elliott Bullock - 0.8 PPG
Da'Veed Dildy - 3.0 PPG
Emmanuel Igbinosa - 3.0 PPG

Key injuries:

None Reported

Eastern Kentucky Wins Again in CBE Classic

Eastern Kentucky 67
UC Irvine 57

Final from O’Reilly Auto Parts CBE Classic in Richmond, Kentucky


Game recap from EKU:

The Eastern Kentucky University men’s basketball team hit 22-of-26 (84.6 percent) free throws against UC Irvine Tuesday night on the way to a 67-57 victory. The game was part of the 2009 O’Reilly Auto Parts CBE Classic.

A soft fast break jumper by junior Justin Stommes with 4:26 left in the game gave the Colonels (3-1) a comfortable 13-point lead, 57-44. However, torrid three-point shooting by Mike Wilder kept UC Irvine (2-3) in the game.

Wilder hit his fifth three-pointer of the game, and third of the second half, with 3:17 showing on the clock to cut EKU’s lead to 10. Wilder sank another three-pointer with just over a minute to bring the Anteaters to within eight. Darren Moore then hit a trifecta from the wing with 56 seconds left in the game to make the score 61-55.
Junior Josh Daniel and sophomore Joshua Jones combined to go 6-of-6 from the charity stripe in the last minute to secure the hard-earned victory for EKU.

Stommes led all scorers in the game with 21 points on 7-of-12 (58.3 percent) shooting. This marked the third time in four games the Cold Spring, Minn., native reached the 20-point plateau. The 6-7 guard also collected six rebounds, three assists and three steals.

Complete Recap

Campbellsville Earns Tough Road Win at Shawnee State

Campbellsville 62
Shawnee State 58

Final from Portsmouth, Ohio

Game recap from Campbellsville:

Campbellsville University abandoned its man-to-man defense in the second half Tuesday to beat Shawnee State University, 62-58, on the road in Portsmouth, Ohio.

"We're definitely not happy with the way we played. We know we're better, but give Shawnee State some credit. They're young and have some really nice freshman," CU head coach Keith Adkins said. "It says something about the character of your basketball team to go on the road and get a win when you don't play well."

Campbellsville University abandoned its man-to-man defense in the second half Tuesday to beat Shawnee State University, 62-58, on the road in Portsmouth, Ohio.

"We're definitely not happy with the way we played. We know we're better, but give Shawnee State some credit. They're young and have some really nice freshman," CU head coach Keith Adkins said. "It says something about the character of your basketball team to go on the road and get a win when you don't play well."

Complete Game Recap

Union College Comes Up Short Against Cincinnati Christian


Cincinnati Christian 93
Union College 85

Final from Barbourville, Kentucky


Game Recap from Union:

Union College hit over 57 percent of its shots, but it wasn't enough to over come 26 turnovers as visiting Cincinnati Christian (Ohio) University scored the 93-85 victory Tuesday.

The Bulldogs (3-4 overall) hit 39-of-68 shots (57.4 percent) from the floor while the Eagles shot 40.7 percent (33-of-81 shots). However, Cincinnati Christian (4-3 overall) netted 29 points off of Union's 26 turnovers.

Conversely, Union scored only 17 points off of 19 Cincinnati Christian miscues.

Union maintained the lead for much of the first half, building a 20-13 cushion after a Kearney Demus (Lexington, Ky.) bucket at the 9:45 mark. However, the Bulldogs could not shake the Eagles as the visitors rallied to tie the score at 26-26 on a Darriel Hunter 3-pointer with 3:15 remaining.

After Union made it 28-26, Cincinnati Christian went on an 8-0 run to grab a six-point lead. Anthony Coote (Georgetown, Ky.) hit a 3-pointer just before the half to pull Union within 34-31 at the break.

The Bulldogs kept the game close for much of the second half. Dan Penick (Ludlow, Ky.) tied the game at 59-59 with 10:58 to play, but Union never reclaimed the lead in the second half.

Following a 7-0 Eagle run, the Bulldogs scored six-straight points to cut the margin to 66-65 at the 7:44 mark. But Cincinnati Christian countered with a 14-5 rally to open up an 80-70 lead with 4:27 remaining. Union never recovered as it could not get any closer than seven points as Cincinnati Christian pulled out the 93-85 decision.

Darrel Jackson (Jonesboro, Ark.) paced Union with 16 points on 8-of-12 shooting, while Payton Ponzer (Independence, Ky.) chipped in 15 points and five rebounds. Josh Hurd (Independence, Ky.) just missed recording double-double as he finished with 14 points and nine rebounds.

For Cincinnati Christian, Dartanian Thomas set the tone with 24 points, while Joe Mendenhall netted 17 points. Meanwhile, Josh Reid chipped in 15 points, and Hunter and Kurt Duke contributed 13 and 11 points, respectively.

The Eagles outrebounded the Bulldogs 48-35 as well.

Union returns to action Friday when it plays host to Berea (Ky.) College at 7:30 p.m.

Pictured: Union's Payton Ponzer (Independence, Ky.)

Kentucky Ranked #5 in Playboy Basketball Poll


Playboy's Top 25 picks for 2009-2010 are:

1. Michigan State
2. Kansas
3. North Carolina
4. Kentucky
5. Purdue
6. Texas
7. Villanova
8. Duke
9. West Virginia
10. Georgetown
11-25. Mississippi State, Butler, Tennessee, Connecticut, California, Washington, Clemson, Ohio State, Wake Forest, Siena, Oklahoma, Illinois, Dayton, Michigan,GeorgiaTech

Kentucky Backs Cleveland State Into a Wall

Kentucky 73
Cleveland State 49

Final from Cancun Challenge in Cancun, Mexico


Game Recap from AP:

Once John Wall gained his footing, not even a warped court could slow down Kentucky.

The heralded freshman found his form in the second half and proved too much to handle in the open floor as the No. 5 Wildcats raced past Cleveland State 73-49 on Tuesday in the Cancun Challenge at the Moon Palace Resort.

Wall scored a team-high 15 points, including 11 after halftime, as he zipped in and out of the Cleveland State defense. The nation's top-rated recruit last year repeatedly took charge with the ball, drawing trips to the free-throw line or setting up teammates for open looks at the basket.

The game was played in unconventional surroundings, with the resort's main ballroom being converted into a makeshift gymnasium.

Chandeliers hung from the low ceiling, two electronic scoreboards were connected to the ceiling by wire cables, and a food buffet sat just a few feet off the end of one baseline. Sections of the hardwood floor had gaps several inches wide and the baseline was a jagged line where the floor did not match up.

The game was chippy and ragged from the start, with both teams talking trash and officials whistling 24 fouls in the first half. A late 3-pointer by 6-foot-10 forward Josh Harrellson stemmed a late Cleveland State run and gave Kentucky a 35-27 lead at the break.

Kentucky (5-0) took control early in the second half when freshman forward DeMarcus Cousins hit a 3 as the shot clock expired, then made five free throws on one possession, aided by an intentional foul called on D'Aundray Brown for grabbing Wall and pulling him to the floor on a breakaway.

By the time Cleveland State (3-2) called a timeout with 13:08 remaining, Kentucky had outscored the Vikings 18-4 in the second half to open a 22-point advantage.

Cousins was whistled for an technical foul for throwing an intentional elbow at Cleveland State's Jared Cunningham with 3:25 remaining after an official warned Cunningham for shoving Cousins in the back seconds earlier.

Kentucky won despite preseason All-American Patrick Patterson finishing with only nine points and five rebounds, both well below his season averages of 19 points and 12.3 rebounds. Patterson played only one minute in the second half but did not appear to have an injury.

Cleveland State was led by Brown's 10 points. Cousins added 14 points and seven rebounds for Kentucky.

Box Score

My Thoughts:

- 9 turnovers between Wall and Bledsoe; they are freshmen, but that number must come down
- Still no Liggins; still no Dodson
- Turnovers: Kentucky 20 Cleveland State 11
- Rebounds: Kentucky 48 Cleveland State 28
- FG%: Kentucky 22-42 (52.4%) Cleveland State 17-64 (26.6%)
- Kentucky was 24-35 from the FT line for 68.6% - not great, but acceptable
- 8 Cats played 14+ minutes; 10 Cats played 10+ minutes
- Listed Attendance: 832 (Looked like about 825 where wearing blue and white)

The John Wall Dance Finds Its Way to ABC's Cougar Town

The John Wall "dance" that he demonstrated at Kentucky's Big Blue Madness is going to find its way to ABC's Cougar Town.

Excerpt of article from Kentucky.com:

If that's not enough, at the end of the scene, which involves a basketball game, Hopkins does his rendition of Kentucky point guard John Wall's much-imitated dance from last month's Big Blue Madness.

"This whole episode is a little dedication to my two favorite point guards," Hopkins said, laughing.

Complete Article

Here's the infamous John Wall Dance:

Just a Myth that John Calipari Produces Point Guards?

Excerpt of article from DimeMag.com:

John Calipari produces NBA point guards.

It’s the biggest myth in college basketball.


True, Derrick Rose and Tyreke Evans played for Calipari at Memphis and went on to be picked #1 and #4 in their respective NBA Drafts. Rose won Rookie of the Year in ‘09 and Tyreke is right in the mix for the 2010 trophy. Calipari also had Dajuan Wagner at Memphis before he was a Top-10 pick; and no one knows how good Wagner could’ve been as a pro before injuries and illness got in the way.

But let’s be serious: D-Rose, ‘Reke and Juanny would’ve been Lottery picks whether they’d gone to Memphis or Middle Tennessee State. All three left school after their freshman years, not quite enough time for Cal to really mold them into pros; had those three gone pro out of high school they would’ve been picked anyway. Did Cal really “produce” these NBA point guards, or just oversee their development for a few months?

Complete Article

Louisville Cardinals Have Recruiting Work To Do

ESPN.com ranks the 2010 recruiting efforts of the teams in the Big East Conference. They grade Louisville with a "C" and say the Cardinals have work to do:

Louisville Cardinals

Louisville commits: two
Grade: C

Point guard depth is the foundation of this class. Coach Rick Pitino again has been successful in New York by signing lead guard Russell Smith (Briarwood, N.Y./South Kent ). Smith will bring excellent athletic and passing ability to Louisville's attack. Also, true point guard Elisha Justice (Pikeville, Kent./Shelby Valley) is an invited walk-on. He will be a dream come true for the Cards wing and post. He simply makes teammates better with his off-the-charts basketball IQ and feel for the game.

Complete Rankings from ESPN.com

Rick Pitino Basketball Press Conference This Afternoon

He discusses his team and the upcoming game at UNLV:

Murray State Joins WKU in Mid-Major Top 25

Mid-Major Top 25 from CollegeInsider.com:

1. Butler (28) 3-0 772 1
2. Gonzaga (3) 2-1 746 2
3. Old Dominion 4-0 637 6
4. Siena 2-1 627 3
5. Western Kentucky 1-1 605 5
6. VCU 2-1 561 8
7. Northern Iowa 2-1 553 4
8. Creighton 2-1 521 11
9. Portland 3-0 467 12
10. Cornell 2-1 456 10
11. George Mason 3-2 444 7
12. Illinois State 2-0 388 13
13. Wright State 2-1 369 14
14. Rider 2-2 311 9
15. Niagara 3-2 234 17
16. Northeastern 1-1 224 15
17. Long Beach State 3-1 187 18
18. Akron 2-2 163 16
19. Ohio 3-0 155 NR
20. Detroit 4-1 153 NR
21. Cal State Fullerton 2-0 142 NR
22. St. Mary's 2-1 115 22
23. Murray State 3-1 103 NR
24. Radford 2-1 100 23
25. Northern Colorado 5-0 99 NR

OTHERS RECEIVING VOTES: Texas-San Antonio 91, San Diego 87, Morgan State 69, Missouri State 59, Kent State 53, Southern Illinois 46, North Texas 45, Pacific 41, South Alabama 37, Wichita State 34, Cleveland State 30, Boston University 28, Buffalo 23, Vermont 23, UC Santa Barbara 22, College of Charleston 20, Jacksonville 17, Oakland 17, Wofford 17, Wisconsin Green-Bay 16, Milwaukee 16, IUPUI 15, Indiana State 14, Appalachian State 12, Holy Cross 11, Troy 10, Princeton 9, Davidson 8, Eastern Michigan 8, Campbell 7, Norfolk State 7, Bradley 6, Montana 6, Mount St Mary's 6, Stony Brook 6, Western Carolina 6, Furman 4, Sam Houston State 4, Ball State 3, Denver 3, Morehead State 2, Chicago State 2, Bucknell 1, Robert Morris 1, Western Michigan 1.

Nestor Colmenares Named Mid-South Player of the Week


Press Release from Campbellsville University:

Campbellsville University senior forward Nestor Colmenares is the Mid-South Conference Men's Basketball Player of the Week, the conference announced on Monday.

The Caracas, Venezuela, native, earned the conference's first weekly award of the season after averaging 20 points and 12 rebounds in a pair of wins over ranked opponents.

Colmenares scored 15 points and grabbed 10 rebounds in the Tigers (5-1) 57-50 win at No. 11-ranked Union University. He followed with a 25-point, 14-rebound performance in a 90-80 overtime win over No. 18-ranked Freed-Hardeman University to conclude the week.

Colmenares added three assists and six steals during the two-game week. He shot 63.6 percent (14-of-22) from the field.

On the season, Colmenares leads the Tigers in scoring (16.5 points per game) and rebounding (10.5).

CU (5-1) travels to Shawnee State University on Tuesday for a 7 p.m. game.

NBA Rookie Terrence Williams Demands More Attention

DimeMag.com lists five NBA rookies that demand more attention this season. One rookie that makes the list is former Louisville Cardinal Terrence Williams:

Terrence Williams, Nets (11 ppg and 2.2 apg through 13 games/New Jersey: 0-13)
Williams is getting the most playing time out of this group, at 29.3 a game, but still deserves some attention. With as much young talent as New Jersey has, it is surprising to see just how much they are struggling. Going into the draft, I thought that he was going to get lost in the NBA. I thought he would become a tweener and not really find a spot - similar to how Antoine Wright was like coming out of Texas A&M in 2005. While it’s still too early to definitively say that Williams is going to be a star, he is already showing flashes of becoming a great player. Along with Devin Harris, Courtney Lee and CDR, Williams is undoubtedly the future of the Nets. In a loss at Milwaukee last Wednesday, he recorded his third double-double of the season, finishing with 20 points and 10 rebounds. At 6-6, he is bigger than other point guards, and can bully smaller defenders into the post. He is still struggling to find his shot, but that’s understandable as he continues to acclimate to the NBA. Hopefully being on the worst team in the League doesn’t mess with his psyche the same way it is Douglas-Roberts.

Complete Article from Dimemag.com

Brandon "Snap" Peters to Western Kentucky University


I have confirmed that 6-2 combo guard Brandon Peters has verbally committed to Western Kentucky during his visit this week.

Peters is an explosive talent and is ranked #119 on the Rivals150 List for 2010.

I just spoke to Brandon and here are his thoughts on why he chose Western Kentucky:

"The school was great and so were the coaches. I really felt comfortable out there and I can see myself in a Hilltopper uniform for the next couple of years."

- Brandon "Snap" Peters

Rivals.com Profile

John Calipari is Not Taking Any Chances in Cancun


Coach Calipari wants no part of this huge iguana in Cancun

Calipari posted this image on Twitter earlier:
UKCoachCalipari http://twitpic.com/qrg09 - Keeping my distance from an iguana on the way to shootaround

Will the Kentucky Wildcats Land Doron Lamb Soon?


It is likely that 2010 combo guard Doron Lamb will commit soon and sign during the Spring signing period.

Lamb, an athletic 6-4 scoring guard at Oak Hill Academy, will choose between Arizona, Connecticut, Kansas, Kentucky and Oklahoma.

Several sources have indicated that he will choose from Kansas or Kentucky, with Connecticut making a strong push after last weekend's visit. An ESPN recruiting insider stated on ESPNU last week that he feels Lamb will be a Kentucky Wildcat.

A commitment from Lamb, who visited Lexington on October 23, would go a long ways towards easing Kentucky fans' 2010 recruiting concerns. At this point, the Wildcats have only Stacey Poole in the 2010 Class and have missed out on several high-profile recruits including Tobias Harris, Jelan Kendrick, Adreian Payne and Kyrie Irving.

Here is an excerpt of an article on ZagsBlog.com that references Lamb and his upcoming decision:

Oak Hill (Va.) guard Doron Lamb will likely commit sometime soon, but wait until the spring to sign, his father said.

“Yeah, I think so,” Calvin Lamb said by phone. “He’ll commit soon but he’ll sign in the spring.”

The 6-foot-4 Lamb has visited UConn, Kentucky, Kansas and Oklahoma and may still get out to see Arizona.


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Kentucky Wildcats Give Corey Allmond an Assist


The sizzling shooting performance that Corey Allmond displayed last week in Rupp Arena has helped land Southland Conference Player of the Week honors. His 11 three-point baskets were the most made in a UK game, the most made at Rupp Arena and the most made by a Southland Conference player.

Excerpt of article from KBTX.com:

Sam Houston State senior guard Corey Allmond has been named the Southland men's basketball player of the week the league office announced Monday.

Allmond, a native of Oxon Hill, Maryland, set the Adolph Rupp Arena, Southland Conference and Sam Houston State record with 11 three-point baskets made in 102-92 loss at No. 4 Kentucky Thursday.

His 37 points scored against the Wildcats ranks as the second-highest single-game scoring total by a Bearkat against an NCAA Division I opponent.

Allmond snapped the old Southland three-point field goal record of 10 held by Earnest Porter of Nicholls and Daryl Cohen of Southeastern Louisiana.

Complete Article

Monday, November 23, 2009

Western Kentucky Squeaks By Northridge in NIT

Western Kentucky 68
Cal State Northridge 67

Final from NIT Season Tip-Off in Bowling Green, Kentucky

Game Recap from ESPN.com:

Anthony Sally hit one of two free throws with 4.7 seconds left in the game to help Western Kentucky defeat California State-Northridge 68-67 on Monday night.

The Hilltoppers (2-1) didn't take a lead in the second half until 1:08 left in the NIT Season Tip-Off, and were able to stave off a 3-pointer try by the Matadors' (1-3) Mark Hill at the buzzer.

Sergio Kerusch paced the Hilltoppers with 24 points and nine rebounds. A.J. Slaughter and Jeremy Evans added 13 points apiece, and Steffphon Pettigrew chipped in 10 points and nine rebounds

Kenny Daniels led California State-Northridge with 19 points.

The Matadors held a 33-3 advantage in bench points, but the Hilltoppers were able to score 26 points off 24 California State-Northridge turnovers. Western Kentucky only got nine shots and 33 minutes from its bench players.

Complete Recap and Box Score

Battle at the Point for Kentucky and John Wall


Excerpt of article from Cleveland.com:

It's just over one week into the men's college basketball season, and already it's been wall-to-wall John Wall.

The 6-4 freshman point guard from Kentucky, considered the nation's No. 1 recruit in the Class of 2009, became the talk of college basketball last week when he hit a last-second jumper to beat the Miami RedHawks, 72-70, on Nov. 16. It was the last of his 19 points.

But Tuesday night in Cancun, Mexico, Wall will face the toughest matchup he has seen so far in Cleveland State point guard Norris Cole. The junior is coming off 38- and 24-point performances as CSU has won three straight after an opening loss at St. Bonaventure.

Complete Article

Murray State Gives FIU and Isiah Thomas Another Loss

Murray State 84
Florida Internationl 71

Final from 2K Sports Coaches vs. Cancer Classic in Miami, Florida


Game Recap from ESPN.com:

Isacc Miles scored 16 points and Murray State beat FIU 84-71 on Monday night, giving Isiah Thomas his fifth loss in seven games with the Golden Panthers.

Danero Thomas scored 13 points, while Ivan Aska and B.J. Jenkins each added 12 for Murray State (4-1), the preseason co-favorite in the Ohio Valley. The Racers ended the first half on a 34-10 run.

Stephon Weaver had 23 points for FIU (2-5), which playing its final home game until Dec. 31. The Golden Panthers start a run of eight straight on the road Saturday at Eastern Kentucky.

The game capped the Miami regional in the 2K Sports Classic, benefiting Coaches vs. Cancer.

Complete Recap and Box Score

Louisville Blasts Appalachain State at Freedom Hall

Louisville 80
Appalachain State 53

Final from Louisville, Kentucky


Game Recap by Louisville:

Samardo Samuels had 16 points and Preston Knowles and Edgar Sosa added 11 points each as No. 16 Louisville surged past Appalachian State 80-53 on Monday night.

Freshman Rakeem Buckles added six points and 10 rebounds for the Cardinals (4-0), who won their third game in three days by wearing down the Mountaineers in the second half.

Donald Sims led Appalachian State (2-3) with 19 points and Jeremi Booth had 14, but the Mountaineers couldn't keep pace when the Cardinals turned up the defensive pressure.

Louisville led 39-30 at halftime but slowly pulled away thanks to major contributions from role players like Buckles and Reggie Delk, who made two 3-pointers during a 17-7 run that put the Cardinals up 68-44 midway through the half.

The Cardinals used their distinct size advantage and superior depth to get off to their best start since 2005-06, when they opened 6-0.

That team was rebuilding coming off a Final Four appearance, and the Cardinals quickly faded as the season wore on and missed the NCAA tournament.

Coach Rick Pitino has higher expectations for this season's club, and a win at UNLV on Saturday would give the Cardinals just their second undefeated November in nine seasons under Pitino.

To get there the Cardinals will need to play like they did in the second half against the Mountaineers, who hung around for the opening 20 minutes thanks to some torrid 3-point shooting.

Appalachian State quickly forced Louisville out of its zone defense by knocking down several 3s in the opening minutes, including a 35-foot heave from Sims as the shot clock expired.

Several times the Cardinals appeared to take control only to have Appalachian State chip away.

A late 10-3 run keyed by Samuels gave Louisville any breathing room at halftime, though the Cardinals wasted little time taking control after the break.

Peyton Siva hit a 3-pointer to get Louisville going, Samuels added a hook shot and Sosa rolled in a layup as part of a 10-2 run to put the Cardinals up 49-32. Appalachian State managed to get it back to 12 points but couldn't withstand the constant wave of players the Cardinals put on the court.

All 14 Louisville players entered the game and 11 of them scored.

Delk, the nephew of former Kentucky star Tony Delk, continued his strong start to the season with eight points. Buckles, considered a project of sorts, helped Louisville outrebound the Mountaineers 37-26 and outscore them 30-6 in the paint.

By the time Kyle Kuric stepped in front of a pass and swooped in for a dunk, Louisville led 68-44 for their most decisive victory of the weekend.

Pitino had criticized his team for somewhat lethargic play in wins over East Tennessee State and Morgan State, but the Cardinals were crisp during the final 20 minutes of their three-day run.

Louisville held the Mountaineers to 32 percent shooting in the second half while forcing 11 turnovers

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