Saturday, December 12, 2009

Mr. Ster... Mr. Sterling... Zero Point Zero.

Kentucky 90 Kent Sterling University 73

Who the hell is Kent Sterling?

I was caught off guard almost a week ago when a guy I had never heard of released a ridiculous article about the University of Kentucky basketball team. I almost never respond to this type of garbage but for some reason, this particular one rubbed me the wrong way. The title of the article was: University of Kentucky Basketball Five Days Away from Big Dose of Hoosier Humility.

Here are a few statements from that first article (in the interest of space, I'll be nice and only rehash the three most ridiculous statements):

- "Indiana University will beat Kentucky. There it is. I say it, and I mean it."
- "Kentucky is overhyped and likely overpaid - at least Calipari is. College athletics is one of the few places in education where a coach can be openly acknowledged as - at the minimum - shady, and continue to get jobs where the money gets bigger and bigger."
- "That comeuppance awaits in Bloomington as the once great red and white of the Hoosiers will rise up behind a great game plan by Crean to neutralize Wall. The rest of the rest is relatively ordinary, and deserve no special mention."

I have to admit, it is difficult to read those statements without laughing, but I need to get through the other six (yes six) articles that were written by Sterling. Let's take a few excerpts from article number two:

- "Kentucky clearly grew weary of winning-less-often clean with Tubby Smith (late in his reign) and the peculiar Billy Gillespie, before turning their attention to the search that yielded a guy with two obvious blots on his resume'. The blots were big enough that Indiana never pursued Calipari, even when he made his desire for job known to everyone - including my former boss, who was a complete stranger when their conversation took place."
- "That arrogance will make the defeat on Saturday more difficult for them to accept."

Sterling can't possibly make himself look any worse after those two articles, right? Wrong. Here's a few quotes from article number three:

- "Kentucky has played well for exactly how long the 26-2 run against UNC lasted. They almost lost to Miami, and not even the Miami in the ACC. This is the Miami of Ohio that is in the MAC. Stanford took UK to OT. And yet the arrogance flows like the cash the kids at Kentucky used to get from Dwayne Casey."
- "They have won, but never impressively. They are ranked, but losses are coming and the first will be this Saturday."
- "Come high noon Saturday, the shootout starts and the guys in the candy striped warm-ups will hang in there and hang in there. When the clock reaches 00:00, you'll wonder just how that group beat the vaunted UK freshmen."

He had dug his hole pretty deep with the first three articles, but wait...there's more...article number 4:

- "Lexington is 179 miles from Bloomington, that is one mile for every loss Kentucky has suffered back to Eddie Sutton's last season ('88-'89). I thought we would have to wait another six or seven years to hit that mark, but the 52 losses in the last four seasons really helped get us home."
- "Youngsters who eat bacon before games get cramps. We found that out when UNC almost came back to beat UK in Lexington. Overconfident and undercoached is the way we like Kentucky. That's what we'll see Saturday."

And more - article number 5:

- "I'm going to sit here and happily blog away with every single Indiana basket and Kentucky turnover, and when the Hoosiers win that game, I'm not going to rub anyone's nose in it."
- "They have ignored forfeited Final Four appearances by the programs their shiny new coach headed. They have ignored entire seasons forfeited because of a point shaving scandal. They have ignored Emery envelopes filled with cash for a recruit sent by an assistant coach."
- "It's only teenagers playing basketball, but I love to see people who take this too seriously eat their words."

Can we go for article number 6? Of course we can because we're desperate for website hits from Kentucky fans. Now, Sterling starts worrying that UK might win the basketball game, so he goes after the entire Kentucky Athletic Department (and even manages to get a low blow in on Purdue University):

- "Indiana University is so incredibly dominant in an athletic department comparison, I couldn't believe it myself."
- "Shockingly, by 1972 Rupps UK was 100 pct white again. Glory Road indeed."
- "IU has 134 individual NCAA champions, UK 22, PU 19."
- "IU has won 23 NCAA titles, UK 8 (thank God for women's cross country!), Purdue with 2 for future reference"

Then, the final article, appropriately titled Kentucky Beats Indiana 90-73:

- "It would be politic to say that Indiana will get better because of this ass-whooping Kentucky administered today, and it would also be true."
- "But losing to Kentucky is totally unacceptable. IU can follow the rules and rebuild the program to where this kind of embarrassment doesn't happen. Get good players without paying them or breaking rules with ridiculous NCAA prohibited phone calls, make sure they get their degrees, and then beat Kentucky's ass."
- "Kentucky is going to get whatever it deserves. It might be a national championship. It might be a list of NCAA violations as long as the list of blog comments referring to me as "Turdling"."

Here is the new article for those that missed it (enjoy it Kent, this is the last batch of hits I'll be sending your way)

So, in five days, Kent Sterling released the following seven articles:

Posted 12/7/2009 9:10:00 PM University of Kentucky Basketball Five Days Away from Big Dose of Hoosier Humility

Posted 12/8/2009 9:04:00 PM Kentucky Basketball Fans Show Insecurity and Fear in Responses

Posted 12/9/2009 8:48:00 PM University of Kentucky Basketball Fans Learn Lesson as Indiana Beats Pittsburgh

Posted 12/10/2009 9:33:00 PM University of Kentucky Basketball Trivia

Posted 12/11/2009 11:15:00 PM Kentucky Basketball Loudmouths Invited to a Dance

Posted 12/12/2009 11:31:00 AM Kentucky Basketball Fans Need to Look at Stas in Comparing Athletic Departments

Posted 12/12/2009 2:10:00 PM Kentucky Beats Indiana 90-73

Hoosier humility, huh? Good call.

Your blog states: Kent Sterling, 1070 The Fan Program Director, offers opinion and a behind-the-scenes view of what's happening on 1070 The Fan.

You know what they say about opinions...they are like, well they are like Kent Sterling.

Check out Kent Sterling's Blog

Rick Pitino Watches Justice, Shelby Valley Tonight

Louisville head coach Rick Pitino and assistant Walter McCarty travelled to Pikeville tonight to watch Shelby Valley and future Cardinal Elisha Justice.

Pitino is likely pleased after watching Justice put up 33 points against one of the best teams in the state of Georgia.

Shelby Valley defeated defending Georgia state champion Miller Grove 82-75 at the East Kentucky Expo Center.

Playing in front of his future college coach, Justice exploded for 33 points, 8 assists, 5 steals and 3 rebounds. He was 5-7 from long range and 16-18 from the free throw line.

Palmer, Knight Lead Norse to Big Victory

Northern Kentucky 78
Mount Vernon Nazarene 56

Final from Highland Heights, Kentucky

Game recap by NKU:

David Palmer and Chris Knight combined for 35 points, 16 rebounds and six blocked shots to lead Northern Kentucky University to a 78-56 win over Mount Vernon Nazarene on Saturday.

Palmer finished with 21 points, six rebounds and five blocked shots, while Knight added 14 points, 10 rebounds, three steals and a block. The 6-foot-9 Palmer was 7-for-11 from the field, while Knight finished 7-for-14.

NKU shot 50.8 percent from the field and improved to 6-4 with the non-conference victory. The Norse won easily despite committing 18 turnovers and shooting 60 percent from the free-throw line.

Corey Sorrell scored a career-high 16 points, grabbed seven rebounds and dished out five assists for NKU, which held Mount Vernon Nazarene to 25 percent shooting from the field in the first half to build a 37-19 lead at the break. Sorrell came off the bench and sparked NKU with 10 points in the first half.

Dennis Gagai added 15 points for the Norse and was 3-for-8 from 3-point range. Gagai netted nine points in the first half. NKU finished 7-for-16 in 3-point attempts.

Scott Bibbins dished out nine assists and committed just one turnover for the Norse. It marked the second straight game that Bibbins finished with nine assists.

NKU led by as many as 27 points in the second half and cruised past the visiting Cougars (5-5). Brandon Short scored 15 points and had six assists for Mount Vernon Nazarene.

NKU has now won 24 consecutive games against NAIA opponents, dating back to 1993. Saturday marked the first game between NKU and Mount Vernon Nazarene in men’s basketball.

NKU returns to action Dec. 23 by playing host to UC-Clermont at 7 p.m. in The Bank of Kentucky Center.

Thomas More Earns First PAC Victory

Thomas More 95
Westminster 80

Final from Westminster

Game summary by

Senior power forward Daniel McKeehan (Little Miami) scored 14 of his game-high 21 points in the second half to lead TMC in a Presidents' Athletic Conference game in Pennsylvania.

The Saints improve to 5-2 overall and 1-1 in the PAC. The Titans fell to 2-6 overall and 0-2 in the PAC.

Kentucky's Big Blue Nation Strikes Again

Kentucky basketball tickets See if you can spot the future Wildcat in my daughter's Christmas show

DeCourcy Says What Many Thought About Billy Gillispie

basketball hoops billy gillispie
He was not recruiting high-major level basketball players:

The accounting on the Billy Gillispie era at Kentucky is starting to be completed, and simply from a basketball standpoint things probably were worse than imagined.

Friday, shooting guard Konner Tucker announced he was leaving Wake Forest after earning only a few minutes of playing time in the season's first month. What does this have to do with UK? Gillispie had secured a commitment from Tucker before being dismissed.

Forward Dakotah Euton, from whom Gillispie secured an early commitment when Euton was a ninth grader, signed in November at Akron. That's a strong mid-major program, but it's not like Carolina came surging in to steal Euton once Gillispie was out of the way.

Not only was UK not winning enough, it wasn't recruiting the talent to be successful in the future

Complete Article

Louisville Continues to Slide; Loses to Western Carolina

Western Carolina 91
Louisville 83

Final from Louisville, Kentucky

Game recap by Associated Press:

Mike Williams scored a career-high 24 points and Jake Robinson added 23 as Western Carolina stunned reeling Louisville 91-83 on Saturday.

Robinson knocked down three straight 3-pointers during a decisive second-half run to lift the Catamounts (10-1) to their ninth straight victory.

Edgar Sosa led Louisville (5-3) with 16 points and Preston Knowles returned from a thumb injury to score 15 points, but Louisville couldn't stop Robinson and struggled holding onto the ball.

The Cardinals committed a season-high 21 turnovers which the Catamounts turned into 28 points the other way. Louisville has dropped three of four since a 4-0 start while Western Carolina hasn't lost since falling to No. 2 Texas on Nov. 18.

Murray State Continues to Impress; Defeats ETSU

Murray State 61
East Tennessee State 57

Final from Johnson City, Tennessee

Game summary by Associated Press:

Ivan Aska tallied a double-double and Danero Thomas added 12 points, leading Murray State over East Tennessee State 61-57 on Saturday.

Aska led the Racers (8-1) with 17 points and grabbed 14 rebounds, going 7-for-11 from the field. The Racers have won eight straight since losing 75-70 at California on Nov. 9.

Murray State missed six straight foul shots midway through the second half, letting the Buccaneers (5-6) back in the game. ETSU put together a 9-0 spurt powered by a Jarvis Jones 3-pointer, as well as a steal and layup from Adam Sollazzo, giving the Buccaneers a 54-53 advantage with 2:06 left in the game.

But that would be ETSUs only lead of the contest, as Murray State answered by outscoring the Bucs 8-3 the rest of the way to seal the win.

Micah Williams paced ETSU with 18 points and Bruce Grimm added 11.

Eastern Kentucky Hangs Tough with Maryland in Loss

Maryland 83
Eastern Kentucky 72

Final from College Park, Maryland

Game recap by the Associated Press:

Greivis Vasquez scored 20 points in an unwanted reserve role, Landon Milbourne had 19, and Maryland outlasted stubborn Eastern Kentucky 83-72 on Saturday.

Eric Hayes added 16 points for Maryland (6-3). The Terrapins never trailed, but couldn't pull away from the pesky Colonels (7-3) until Hayes hit a 3-pointer to spark a game-ending 11-4 run.
Vasquez began the game on the bench after showing up late for the morning shootaround. The senior guard had started 80 straight games, a streak launched during his freshman season.

Vasquez entered with 14:14 left in the first half. He scored 13 points after halftime, including a huge 3-pointer that put Maryland up 68-62 with 6:18 remaining.

Justin Stommes led Eastern Kentucky with 16 points. The Colonels placed five players in double figures.

Kentucky Basketball Recruits Named to Watch List

Several Kentucky basketball recruits have been named to the list of 10 finalists for the Naismith Boys' High School Player of the Year Award:

10 Finalists for the Award:

- Harrison Barnes, Ames, Iowa, Ames
- Jared Sullinger, Columbus, Ohio, Northland
- Brandon Knight, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Pine Crest
- Josh Selby, Baltimore, Maryland, Lake Clifton
- Kyrie Irving, West Orange, N.J., St. Patrick
- Tobias Harris, Glen Head, N.Y., Half Hallow Hills West
- Perry Jones, Duncanville, Texas
- Will Barton, Wolfboro, N.H., Brewster Academy
- Tristan Thompson, Henderson, Nev., Findlay Prep
- Reggie Bullock, Kinston, N.C.

Complete Article

Union College Loses Battle with Cincinnati Christian

Cincinnati Christian 92
Union College 88

Final from Cincinnati, Ohio

Game recap by Union College:

Four Bulldogs scored in double figures, but it was not enough as Union College dropped a 92-88 decision to host Cincinnati Christian (Ohio) University Saturday.

Payton Ponzer (Independence, Ky.) led Union with 21 points with Darrel Jackson (Jonesboro, Ark.) chipping in 19 points. Anthony Coote (Georgetown, Ky.) added 14 points, while Beau Brown (Athens, Tenn.) delivered his fourth double-double on the year with 12 points and 11 rebounds.

Union (5-7 overall) led 50-46 at the half, but Cincinnati Christian took advantage of 20 Bulldog turnovers and 19 offensive rebounds to mount the comeback and pull out the four-point win.

On the game, the Eagles outrebounded the Bulldogs 38-30.

Cincinnati Christian is 6-4 on the season.

Union returns to action Tuesday when it pays Alice Lloyd (Ky.) College a visit. Game time is set for 7:30 p.m.

Former Louisville Basketball Big Man Cleared to Play

Jeff Goodman of reports:

Derrick Caracter will make his return to college basketball Sunday against New Mexico State.
UTEP coach Tony Barbee told the once-heralded high school star has been cleared academically to play for the Miners for the rest of the season.

Complete Article

If you want to follow Caracter's return:

9:05 p.m. New Mexico State (2-5) @ UTEP (5-0)

Kentucky "Out-Talents" Indiana in the Second Half

basketball tickets
(4) Kentucky 90
Indiana 73

Final from Bloomington, Indiana

Game summary by the Associated Press:

Eric Bledsoe scored 23 points and Patrick Patterson had 19 and 11 rebounds to lead No. 4 Kentucky to a 90-73 victory over Indiana on Saturday.

The Wildcats have won an all-time leading 1,998 games, and John Calipari matched Adolph Rupp's record start for a first-year Kentucky coach by improving to 10-0.

Maurice Creek had a career-high 31 points for Indiana (4-5), which lost for the eighth time in 10 games in the annual series.

The Hoosiers led the first 10 minutes of the game and trailed 42-41 at halftime.

But after Indiana retook the lead, 48-47 early in the second half, Kentucky went on an 18-0 run to break it open. The Wildcats didn't allow Indiana to get closer than 13 points the rest of the way.

Kentucky freshman John Wall finished with 11 points and eight assists.

My Thoughts:

- First true road test for the young Wildcats; they were a little out of sorts early, but adjusted nicely
- Valiant effort by the Hoosiers, who have mid-major talent at best from top-to-bottom
- Lost a bit of respect for the Hoosier faithful after hearing chants of "S-A-T!" and "Cal's a cheater!" near the end of the game; good advice: win with class, lose with class
- John Wall is just a special talent; he is literally and NBA superstar with college eligibility
- DeAndre Liggins was back with the team today and he played less than a minute at the end (thanks for the correction in the comments section)
- Calipari's current rotation seems to be: Cousins, Patterson, Wall, Bledsoe and Miller getting the start with Orton, Stevenson, Harris and Dodson getting the bench minutes
- Team rebounding: Kentucky 44 Indiana 22; Cats had 19 offensive rebounds
- Indiana nailed nine 3-points and only had 9 turnovers; still lost by 17 points
- John Wall: 8 assists and 1 turnover
- Pictured: Kent Sterling of 1070 the Fan in Indianapolis; nice prediction, buddy

UK Basketball Gameday iPhone App Receives 9/10 Review

basketball tickets
Excellent review for the Kentucky Basketball Gameday iPhone App that was developed in part by former Kentucky basketball players Josh Carrier, Bobby Perry and J.P. Blevins:

Price: $2.99 Score: 9/10 By Nancy Jones

Attention Big Blue Nation: Here’s your one stop shop for the player roster, top blog sites, player and coach tweets, venue information and fast facts. Kentucky Basketball GameDayApp, developed by Singing Bridge, LLC, delivers, delivers and delivers. For University of Kentucky basketball fans, members of the Big Blue Nation, there is no such thing as too much information about basketball. This App is a must-have for every U.K. fan with an iPod or iPhone.

Whether you are attending the game – lucky you – or watching at home on your TV, you become part of the game. You can enjoy pre-game stories by top U.K. bloggers and tweets from the basketball and football team players. You can quickly jump to links for the Kentucky Roster, the UK Athletics Official Site, Kentucky Sports Radio, Wildcat Blue in a Sea of Orange,, Coach, Catspause and many more. You can check the latest blogs and the latest news from regional newspapers like the Lexington Herald Leader and The Courier-Journal. When John Wall goes down the court for a hoop and goes supersonic – you’ll be there with him.

You’ll find yourself checking the tweets during the week to see what the players are saying. Sometimes there are predictions on the game. Sometimes when you check the tweets you get a glimpse of what these young men are doing in their free time.

The history of Kentucky basketball and of their fan support is the stuff of legends. They have more victories than any other team in college basketball history and the fan base consistently ranks first in the nation in home-game attendance. Kentucky fans are just a little obsessed – each year they line up (and camp out) a week in advance to obtain free tickets to midnight madness. Kentucky fans savor every story, tweet and chance to learn more about the players and the team. This app will provides you with a choice of delving into every bit of information, or just picking your favorite source and checking in daily.

I tested Kentucky Basketball GameDayApp for two games. The first was the U.K. vs. UNC-Asheville (at Freedom Hall) and the second was the much-hyped U.K. vs. North Carolina. The combination of Hall, Boogie and Bledsoe with the experience of Patrick Patterson was a joy to watch. And luckily, the Cats delivered wins in both games – not that the U.K. vs. North Carolina wasn’t a nail biter. Checking the links, facts and tweets in the app added to the fun of college basketball game day. I don’t live in Kentucky, so having this kind of information and connection really enhances my game-day experience. If you live in Kentucky then this app will help you make sure that you don’t miss an opportunity to view, enjoy and celebrate the team.

I have one small suggestion for the future. If you could jump between the app and the internet, it would be nice. It’s no biggie, jumping back and forth takes seconds and you’ll find that you want to explore the internet links extensively. This doesn’t interfere with the app and after a while is barely noticeable.

Kentucky Basketball GameDayApp developers have been involved in sports and it shows. There are three former University of Kentucky basketball players (Josh Carrier, J.P. Blevins and Bobby Perry), a Wofford College baseball player, and technical resources that include a Carolina Fan and a former High School Coach and UVA fan. These people know sports.

The bottom line is that Kentucky Basketball GameDayApp will appeal to University of Kentucky fans whether they are in Lexington or scattered throughout the world. This is going to be one exciting year, amp up the experience with this app. Go Cats!

Kentucky Basketball GameDayApp is compatible with iPhone and iPod Touch and requires iPhone OS 3.1 or later.

Kentucky Basketball Home Game in New York City?

hoops basketball new york
John Calipari stated this morning that he is considering the idea of moving a Kentucky basketball "home" game each season to Madison Square Garden in New York City.

The administration of the legendary arena approached Calipari following the overwhelming display of Kentucky fan support during this week's Kentucky vs. Connecticut game. He said he was told that if UK can continually bring that many fans, they should consider hosting a game in New York each season.

Calipari loves the idea, referencing that Duke basketball holds a similar game every season or two in MSG, and stated that he will be looking into it.

High School Hoops: Citizens First Holiday Classic 2009

One of the great high school basketball events in Kentucky is the Citizens First Holiday Classic in Bowling Green. The event has grown in popularity over the past few years and has quickly developed into a must see tournament.

The Citizens First Holiday Classic is hosted at Bowling Green High. The tournament will host 12 teams from across the state and includes 3 teams that competed in the Sweet Sixteen this past March. There will be several of the top players in Kentucky on display at the event.

Field for 2009 Citizens First Holiday Classic:

Pool A: Bowling Green, Christian Brothers, Buckhorn
Pool B: Greenwood, DeSales, Madison Southern
Pool C: Daviess Co., Metcalfe Co., Adair Co.
Pool D: Franklin-Simpson, Mason County, Ryle

Game Schedule

(first team listed will be home team and wear white uniforms)

Dec. 20

6:00pm DeSales vs. Greenwood (Arena) Metcalfe Co. vs. Adair Co. (Auxiliary)
7:30pm Franklin-Simp. vs. Mason Co. (Arena) Bowling Green vs. Christian Brothers (Auxiliary)

Dec. 21

1:30pm Daviess Co. vs. Metcalfe Co. (Arena) Madison Southern vs. DeSales (Auxiliary)
3:00pm Ryle vs. Franklin-Simpson (Arena) Christian Brothers vs. Buckhorn (Auxiliary)
5:30pm Greenwood vs. Madison Southern (Arena) Adair Co. vs. Daviess Co. (Auxiliary)
7:00pm Buckhorn vs. Bowling Green (Arena) Mason Co. vs. Ryle (Auxiliary)

Dec. 22

11:00am A3 vs. C3 (gm 1) B3 vs. D3 (gm 2)
12:30pm B2 vs. D2 (gm 3) A2 vs. C2 (gm 4)
2:00pm A1 vs. C1 (gm 5) B1 vs. D1 (gm 6)
3:30pm W – GM 1 vs. W – GM 2 L – GM 2 vs. L – GM 1
5:00pm W – GM 3 vs. W – GM 4 L – GM 4 vs. L – GM 3
6:30pm W – GM 5 vs. W – GM 6 L – GM 6 vs. L – GM 5

For more information on the Citizens First Holiday Classic:

Contact D.C. Clement at 270-791-0052.

For information on lodging and attractions in Bowling Green:

Go to or call 800-326-7465.

Information for college coaches planning to attend this event:

College coaches that wish to attend this event should contact Shane Howard of Custom College Recruiting for all information on players, rosters, lodging discounts and other special access to the event and city. CCR's goal is to make your experience at this event one to remember and coaches, keep in mind that this service is 100% free to you.

NOTE: will be covering this entire event live from Bowling Green

Kentucky Basketball vs. the Fighting Kent Sterlings

I'm going to give Kent Sterling two more rounds of website traffic this season - once right now and then again tomorrow after Kentucky takes care of business in Bloomington. Sterling, who has worked overtime this week to prove that he knows as much about college basketball as I know about the molecular biology of exocrine secretory epithelial cells (hint: I don't even know what that is), has opted to release another deficient masterpiece that basically attacks everything related to the words Kentucky Wildcats.

Here are a few excerpts:

Kentucky fans have called me names, ripped Indiana Basketball and Indiana University, and angrily denounced my writing abilities. They have acted with the lack of class (mostly) that I'm sure the Board of Regents at UK would appreciate as they have defended the record of their head coach and program.

They have insisted on making everyone here aware of their supposed historical greatness by constantly touting national championships and the fact that UK has won more games than anyone else. They have ignored forfeited Final Four appearances by the programs their shiny new coach headed. They have ignored entire seasons forfeited because of a point shaving scandal. They have ignored Emery envelopes filled with cash for a recruit sent by an assistant coach. They have ignored the stupidity of imposing enormous pressure on Tubby Smith to resign and accept a lesser job as head coach at Minnesota - a better than good coach who won a national championship, and might have won another if not for the death of recruit John Stewart.

If? I thought you were guaranteeing a victory, Kent? Did you lay your $100 down on the Hoosiers?

Tomorrow, if UK loses at Indiana they will likely have no recollection of the game at all by sundown. If UK wins, we'll hear about it until the Turtle Man, who seems to have captivated the whole state with his peculiar vocation and yell after catching the snapping turtles which seem to have overrun the Bluegrass State.

And lastly:

The not forgetting will make the game at noon all the more delicious. It's only teenagers playing basketball, but I love to see people who take this too seriously eat their words. I will be right here tomorrow, and this party is open to IU and UK fans alike. Maybe this can be a place where we can enjoy some friendly competition together. Or maybe this can be a place where UK fan learn a little humility. See you at noon.

Kent Sterling, you are an embarrassment to the proud tradition that is Indiana Hoosier basketball - a tradition that most Kentucky fans, including myself, greatly respect. ESPN must be proud to have you as an affiliate.

In fact, the greatest part of your entire article is the comments section (highly recommended reading). This one sums it best, in my opinion:

Kent, buddy . . . Cut it loose! You're still arguing points from the '80s!? If Tubby Smith was so great, why didn't IU hire him, hmm? What now!? You just got served ON YOUR OWN BLOG!

Bad Journalism

Bellarmine Basketball Overwhelms Ohio Valley

Bellarmine 87
Ohio Valley 48

Final from Louisville, Kentucky

Game recap by Bellarmine:

The Bellarmine University men's basketball team finally got to play a home game in their eighth game of the season and proved why there's no place like home as they dismantled the Ohio Valley Fighting Scots 87-48 in the opening round of the Fern Valley Hotel Classic tonight in Knights Hall.

The Knights (5-3) broke out of the gates in impressive fashion, scoring the the first 13 points of the game in just three and a half minutes. Ohio Valley (1-6) struggled the entire opening period as Bellarmine opened up a 40-point lead at 40-8 with 1:40 to go in the half.

Bellarmine placed four players in double figures, led by Justin Benedetti , who scored 18 points in just 19 minutes of action. Joining Benedetti in double figures were Chris Dowe , 13; Nick Holmes , 12; and Braydon Hobbs , 11.

Bellarmine Head Coach Scott Davenport said in his post game radio show that he was happy with the team, but for him the highlight of the night was Steve Pogue draining a three-pointer at the 5:27 mark of the first half. The senior from Cincinnati was playing in his first game in nearly a year after battling back from a foot injury.

The Knights dominated in nearly every facet of the game, including a 51-32 rebounding edge and outshooting OVU 47.9 percent to 35 percent. Bellarmine also outscored the Scots 39-6 from beyond the arc.

Both teams move on to second round action in the Fern Valley Hotel Classic tomorrow. Ohio Valley will get another stern test as they face No. 20 Southern Indiana at 5 p.m. in Knights Hall. Bellarmine will face Indiana University Southeast at 7:30 p.m.

Western Kentucky Upsets #24 Vanderbilt in Nashville

Western Kentucky 76
(24) Vanderbilt 69

Final from the Sun Belt Classic in Nashville, Tennessee

Game recap by Associated Press:

A.J. Slaughter scored 27 points, and Western Kentucky beat Vanderbilt 76-69 Friday night for the Hilltoppers’ first win in this sporadic series since 1945 in the second game of the Sun Belt Classic.

These teams hadn’t met since 2001, and Vanderbilt (6-3) had won the last 10 including the last meeting in 2001.

No. 9 Tennessee beat Middle Tennessee 75-54 in the first game of a night that gave Vanderbilt and Tennessee an early chance to play at the Sommet Center where the SEC tournament will be held in March.

But Western Kentucky (5-3) got some balanced scoring and led most of the game in beating Vanderbilt for the first time since Jan. 23, 1945. Sergio Kerush added 15 points and Jeremy Evans had 12.

Jeffery Taylor led the Commodores, who lost their second straight game, with 21 points, and Jermaine Beal had 12.

2011 Forward Chane Behanan Talks Basketball

High School Basketball Recruit
Chane Behanan, a 2011 forward that has received recruiting interest from Kentucky and Louisville, spoke to Chad Bishop of The Bowling Green Daily News about the upcoming season. Here is an excerpt from the article:

“Sometimes (it’s frustrating), especially when reporters have your number,” he said. “That’s real, because I had to change mine. As far as college, I don’t really pay attention to it because I’m just a junior right now. I still got a long time. Sometimes I get a little frustrated with it, but I just gotta work because there’s someone out there working harder than me every day.”

The 6-foot-7, 225-pound Behanan is being recruited by some heavy hitters, including Alabama, Cincinnati, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisville, Mississippi State, Ohio State, Oklahoma State, Purdue, Tennessee, West Virginia, Xavier and Western Kentucky, according to various recruiting Web sites.

Friday, December 11, 2009

John Wall is Becoming UK Basketball's Chief Recruiter

Kentucky freshman point guard John Wall has been doing his best to recruit former high school teammate C.J. Leslie to Lexington. Leslie reports is his online diary:

I did get to watch my boy John Wall (Word of God, 2009) beat North Carolina! We actually had a game that day and I only caught the last eight minutes, but someone recorded it for me and I watched the whole game. Aww man, John did his thing! I was definitely proud of him. I talked to him after the game and he was definitely on his recruiting thing, just saying “You need to come here, man!”

So that was cool to see him do so well in such a big game. His game has grown even more than when we played together last year.

Leslie, a 2010 forward, is one of Kentucky's primary targets for next season's recruiting class. He ranks #14 on the Rivals150 List and he holds offers from a long list of schools including Kentucky, North Carolina State, Oregon, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia Tech, Georgetown, FIU and Maryland. Many recruiting analysts believe that he will eventually land at Kentucky or N.C. State.

Kentucky Wesleyan Blasts Asbury College

Kentucky Wesleyan 90
Asbury College 47

Final from Owensboro, Kentucky

Game recap from KWC:

Todd Lee didn't rant and rave at his Kentucky Wesleyan College basketball team at halftime of Thursday night's game against Asbury, which trailed by just 10 points at intermission.

"I told the guys, 'You have to do it,' " Lee said. "Fortunately, they went back out and played at the level we're capable of playing."

The No. 25 Panthers (9-1) got three 3-pointers from Marico Stinson in a 20-0 blitz over the first 61/2 minutes of the second half to bury the NAIA Eagles 90-47 before a sparse crowd at the Sportscenter.

"Marico is an excellent shooter," Lee said. "When he receives the ball ready to shoot, he can find a rhythm and hit three or four 3-pointers in succession. That's what happened tonight, and it sort of ignited us there to start the second half."

Once the fuse was lit, there was no stopping the explosion for Wesleyan, which cruised to its ninth consecutive victory.

Complete Game Recap

LeBron James on John Wall: "He's great"

NBA Basketball: LeBron James

Kentucky freshman point guard John Wall has been electrifying crowds and wowing fans this season.

He won over LeBron James long ago.

"He's great," the Cavaliers superstar said Friday night. "He'll be the No. 1 pick in the draft."

James has developed a strong relationship with the speedy Wall, who has attended the MVP's basketball camps in Akron the past few summers. Wall is averaging 19 points per game for the No. 4 Wildcats, who will play at Indiana on Saturday.

Earlier this week, Wall scored a season-high 25 points, scoring 12 of Kentucky's final 15 in a win over No. 14 Connecticut at New York's Madison Square Garden — one of James' favorite stages.

So what does James like about Wall's game?

"His speed with the ball. He's like (Chicago guard) Derrick Rose," James said. "Derrick is much stronger than he is, but he has some of the same athleticism that Derrick has and Coach Cal (Kentucky coach John Calipari) is going to let those type of guys play. He has shown why he came out being the top player in high school and is one of the top 5 players in college."

It wasn't long ago that Wall was cut from his high school basketball team, mainly because of his attitude.

"He won't be cut again," James cracked. "Unless he's in a barber's chair."

The Kentucky Wildcats Are "A Glorified AAU Team"

Here are some strong, opinionated thoughts delievered by Tony Basilio (a man from the land of escorts and college recruiting - aka Knoxville, TN):

I was watching Jon Wall last night after UK's win over UConn in NYCNY. He was standing next to Coach Ca St. Kentucky. Do you think Wall cares at all about that Uniform he's wearing? I mean at all? He's at UK because World Wide Wes selected the school for him. This is immoral. He's like a little pawn. And then Cal came on and said, 'we drank the poison. We are letting everybody tell us how good we are individually. We didn't pass the ball in the first half at all like a team. We're a 4-5 team right now' Really coach Cal? Like a team. A team of what? UK is like a glorified AAU program now. That's what the fans and that fan base have been reduced to. It's paradoxical to think that you could be reduced while your team produces. But that's the deal there. Even if they win a National Title this year, it's not legit. Is that a program? A bunch of hired guns, the best of whom are there for 18 months, tops. What is that? Oh, don't worry. You're being told this is better now than it ever has been. And UK fan, you're payin' more for it than ever before. Hey ESPN says it's better. Don't they? People are getting richer, aren't they.

Put it this way, do you think Derrick Rose sits around and cheers for Memphis when they play games these days? Do you think Memphis fans sit around and cheer for Derrick Rose? Is he one of them? Are they anything to him? No and NO. Who is he? Who are they? It's like a facade. Hoops at the high level has cheapened itself with the one and dones.

And UK is now the tackiest and cheapest of them all. Kentucky is now like Elin being married to Tiger Woods. Those fans have been duped. What they think is a great thing will ultimately not satisfy. Because it's meaningless. It's AAU.

Sure they're good. But at what price. Is is worth losing your soul and tradition in the process or building a program? But that's just it. UK isn't building. They turned the lights on. And a bunch of guys who don't care about that place, the fans, the tradition and couldn't find it on a map, have showed up. If I had an opportunity to gain what UK has but forfeit my tradition, identity and what makes me special, I wouldn't do it.

Tony Basilio's Site

Kyle Macy's Bluegrass Stallions Off to a Good Start

ABA Pro Basketball
Excerpt of article from

The Bluegrass Stallions will face the Seattle Mountaineers at 3 p.m. Saturday at the Kentucky Horsepark Arena.

The Stallions are 3-2 and have beaten last year’s national champion the Kentucky Bisons twice this year.

The team is led by former Kentucky standout and Morehead State coach Kyle Macy and assisted by former teammate Jay Shidler.

The team consists of former college players from Kentucky, Eastern Kentucky, Georgetown College, Indiana Wesleyan, Cumberlands, Pikeville College, Kentucky Christian and the University of Pittsburgh.

Complete Article

Remaining Bluegrass Stallions' Schedule:

Saturday, Seattle, 3 p.m.
Dec. 15 Music City, 7 p.m.
Dec. 18 at Georgia Prowl, 7 p.m.
Dec. 20 Kentucky Bisons, 3 p.m.
Dec. 22 Charlotte, 7 p.m.
Dec. 26 West Virginia, 7 p.m.
Dec. 27 at Music City, 3 p.m.
Jan. 3 Kentucky Bisons, 3 p.m.
Jan. 6 Southeast Texas, 7 p.m.
Jan. 9 at Charlotte, 7 p.m.
Jan. 10 Smokey Mountain, 3 p.m.
Jan. 15 at Chicago Steam, 7 p.m.
Jan. 21 at Kentucky Bisons, 7 p.m.
Jan. 24 Chicago Steam, 3 p.m.
Feb. 6 at Southeast Texas, 7 p.m.
Feb. 8 at Southeast Texas, 7 p.m.
Feb. 12 Georgia Prowl, 7 p.m.
Feb. 14 at Music City, 3 p.m.
Feb. 19 at Southeast Texas, 7 p.m.
Feb. 21 at Kentucky Bisons, 3 p.m.
Feb. 25 Mississippi Blues, 7 p.m.
Feb. 26 at St. Louis, 7 p.m.
Feb. 27 St. Louis, 7 p.m.
March 5 at West Virginia, 7 p.m.
March 6 at Mississippi, 7 p.m.

Bad Break for Louisville Basketball and George Goode

Louisville's George Goode has suffered an apparent meniscus tear in his knee and is likely out for the remainder of the season.

“Unfortunately George fell down yesterday,” Pitino said of the sophomore forward, “He didn’t bang anything. He just fell down. As we speak there’s an MRI on him but he’s probably out for the season. It’s funny about these injuries. It’s never with contact.”

In other injury news, guards Preston Knowles and Peyton Siva should be back for tomorrow's game against Western Carolina, but Jerry Smith is still out.


Nets Want More Drive from T-Will; On and Off the Court

The New Jersey Nets would like to see a change in Terrence Williams' game, both on - and off - the court. Here is an article from about New Jersey's message to the former Louisville Cardinal:

Once Terrence Williams returns to the lineup – maybe Friday night against the Pacers – the Nets not only expect him to change his attitude and actions off the court, they’d like to see him alter his game, as well.

“What we’d like Terrence to do is take it to the basket,” interim coach and GM Kiki Vandeweghe said by phone yesterday. “He has huge athleticism, both on the defensive end and offensive end. He can be a very, very effective defender, and he can be effective on the offensive end also. He’s a very good ball-handler, a very good passer and he’s athletic enough to get by his guy and take it to the basket. And those are the things we’re looking for out of him.”

Earlier this week, Williams defiantly said that he would keep hoisting up jumpers despite a terrible shooting slump, missing 33 of his last 44 shots. Williams said that approach got him drafted, so why change?

“They’re not guarding me so I’m not going to keep dribbling the ball into people,” the rookie said on Monday after going 0-for-5 and playing just 9:24 in a loss to the Knicks the day before. “If everybody’s in the lane and my man’s off of me, I’m going to shoot the ball.”

Complete Article

Glasgow Columnist Admits: "I was wrong about Kentucky"

Kentucky Wildcats Basketball
Jon Webb of the Glasgow (Ky.) Daily Times shares a commentary this morning about the Kentucky Wildcats. He admits that while he doesn't make a habit of admitting he's wrong, he may have misjudged the Kentucky Wildcats this season.

He writes:

I was (94-percent probably) wrong about Kentucky.

While commenting on the release of the USA Today/ESPN Preseason Coaches Poll in the Nov. 1 edition of the paper, I wrote the following:

“After a 22-14 season and two years under Billy Gillispie, the Wildcats are far from the fifth-best team in the nation.”

Well, they aren’t. They may be the best.

The Kentucky Wildcats are not only opening eyes nationally, they are making noise in the Bluegrass state, as well.

Dream Preview: Kentucky Opens SEC Play Against Georgia

Southeastern Conference Basketball
Georgia (6-7) vs.
#1 Kentucky (15-0)

Location: Rupp Arena, Lexington, Kentucky

Time: 4:00 p.m.

TV: ESPN Full Court

Radio: BBSN

Summary: The top-ranked Kentucky Wildcats, fresh off a blowout victory over arch-rival Louisville, opens SEC play by hosting the Georgia Bulldogs.

Kentucky has opened the John Calipari with 15 consecutive victories and are starting to look like a team that has the potential to make a Final Four run. John Wall is well on the way to a Naismith Award and Patrick Patterson should join him on the All-America team.

Georgia has struggled in pre-SEC play, but has shown signs of improvement.

Line: UK -17

NOTE: Former Kentucky Wildcat Mark Pope will be on the Georgia bench as an assistant.

[buzz] [buzz] [BUZZ] [BUZZ]

What the @$#%?

7:00 a.m... time for work

What a great dream.

Oh well, at least it's Friday!

Thoughts on Kentucky/UCONN Basketball Game offers five thoughts about Kentucky and UConn following last night's game:

1. Wall is a one-man refutation of John Gasaway.

2. Right now "John Wall" is better than John Wall.

3. Right now John Wall is better than Kentucky.

4. Right now DeMarcus Cousins really does shoot quite often.

5. Connecticut will be very good this year--with just a little more balance on offense.

Excerpt from the article:

The Wildcats are very, very fortunate to greet the new day this morning at 9-0. Take it from John Calipari: “We were lucky again, but sometimes you’d rather be lucky than good.” Indeed. The ‘Cats are now 4-0 in games that came down to the final minute of regulation. They’re unbelievably talented, of course, but they give the ball away on 24 percent of their possessions and their perimeter D is only fair. Don't count on them to run the table just yet.

Complete Article

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Alice Lloyd Basketball Pulls Away from Kentucky Christian

Alice Lloyd 92
Kentucky Christian 64

Final from Grayson, Kentucky

Game recap from ALC:

The Alice Lloyd Eagles broke open a close game by outscoring the host Kentucky Christian University Knights 52-32 in the second half, and won going away, 92-64.

The Knights have a well earned reputation as being a challenging team to play on their home court, but after falling at the Grady Nutt Athletic Center to KCU by three points last month, ALC was determined not to have a repeat performance. Both clubs played hard in the first twenty minutes, but the Eagles were able to perform well enough to grind out a 40-32 lead by intermission.

The second half belonged to Alice Lloyd. After shooting 46% in the opening stanza, the Eagles connected on 56% from the field in the final twenty minutes while holding the Knights to only 39%. With their solid play, ALC was able to turn what was once a close game into an insurmountable lead as they earned the decisive victory.

For the victors (3-5) they were led in scoring by junior guard Daniel Combs with 20 points. For good measure, he also added game high 11 rebounds. Big sophomore forward Nick Brumback powered in 14, while 6’10 freshman center Devon Adams came off the bench to net 12.

For KCU (6-4), they were led in scoring by the Illic brothers. Svetomir led all scorers with 24, while Cedomir added 12.

ALC‘s next scheduled contest will be Saturday December 12, when they return home to face a NCAA III foe, the Golden Eagles of Spalding University. Tipoff is set for 2pm.

5 Reasons that Louisville Basketball May Have Tough Time points out that Rick Pitino teams have a trademark of starting slowly and then heat up for conference and tournament play. The site offers five reasons why this season may end differently for the Cardinals:

1. Terrence Williams, Earl Clark still no replaced

2. Charlotte loss was uncharacteristic

3. The injury bug is back

4. Samardo Samuels hasn't progressed

5. Off-the-court issues are still looming

For a complete explanation of each reason, check out the full article.

EKU Site Wonders Where the Basketball Fans Are?

Empty Basketball Arena
Excerpt of article from

What would it take to fill McBrayer Arena during home basketball games on a consistent basis?

A national title? Four straight OVC titles?

With more than 12,000 students on campus, free tickets to games and a competitive team on the court, I would expect more fan support for the Colonels.

Instead, games might reach 2,000 in attendance if we're lucky.

Good luck getting people to come.

Maybe offer a promotional night. Maybe the first 1,000 students get an automatic "A" on a final exam. The first 2,000 students get to be "Dean-for-the-Day." Maybe even give the first 3,000 fans a chance to have a building named after them.

Would that work?

Complete Article

My Thoughts: I added this article because it addresses an issue that has always "bugged" me. As a graduate of Morehead State University, it has always been frustrating to me that fans do not fill Johnson Arena and enjoy legitimate NCAA DI basketball.

Even this season, following a 20-win season and OVC championship, the fans fail to come out and support the Eagles. I feel very similar to the author of this article - what can a school do to change this?

Using Morehead State as my example: I have been all over Kentucky to watch basketball and some of the best games I have watched - in the state - have been played at Johnson Arena in Morehead. I would rank Kenneth Faried as one of my favorite 3 players to watch - in the state.

Sean Gillespie Promoted to Full-Time Coach at Union

NAIA Men's Hoops
Union College Director of Athletics Darin S. Wilson announced Thursday Sean Gillespie as the Bulldogs full-time head men’s basketball coach.

Gillespie took over the program as the interim head coach in July when Kelly Combs resigned from the post.

"I am pleased to announce Sean Gillespie as the head coach of our men’s basketball program," said Wilson. "Sean has handled the transition period extremely well and he brings significant basketball experience to the program. We welcome Sean and his family to the athletic department and to our basketball program."

Under Gillespie, the Bulldogs are off to a 5-6 start overall and own a 3-1 Appalachian Athletic Conference record. Union has also received votes in the NAIA Division II Coaches’ Poll.

"I am really appreciative of this opportunity and the support Mr. Wilson and Union College has given my staff and I," said Gillespie. "We believe we are heading in the right direction, and I look forward to seeing what we can accomplish the rest of this season and in the years to come."

Prior to coming to Union, Gillespie spent the past three seasons as the assistant men's basketball coach at Sterling (Kan.) College. The Warriors improved every season while Gillespie was with the program. In 2006-07, Sterling posted an 12-17 overall record before posting a 16-12 mark in 2007-08. The Warriors took a giant leap in 2008-09, going 21-10, winning the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference regular-season championship and advancing to the NAIA Division II National Championship Tournament.

Union returns to action Saturday when it pays Cincinnati Christian (Ohio) University a visit. Game time is set for 3 p.m.

Georgetown Basketball Rolls Over Asbury College

Georgetown 120
Asbury 79

Final from Georgetown, Kentucky

Game summary by

Eddie Gray knew Georgetown College men's basketball team would have a big game to send it into the Christmas holiday. And behind his 24 points, the point guard helped the Tigers to a 120-79 win Wednesday over Asbury College at Alumni Gym.

GC (8-2) will now be on break for most of December and will not play another game until Dec. 30.

Vic Moses also broke the 20s with 22 points and Jamel Ferguson and Teshawn Byron scored 12 each, while Vincent Crutcher chipped in 10.

Western Kentucky Still in the Mix for Daryl Traynham

Three schools have emerged as the front runners for 5-8 point guard Daryl Traynham. He ranks #110 on the Rivals150 List for 2010 and will choose between Western Kentucky, Massachusetts and Seton Hall.

Insiders feel that he will ultimately choose between UMass and Western Kentucky. UMass has been rumored hold a slight advantage since the Hilltoppers have already locked up combo guard Brandon Peters, but that is not necessarily the case.

He recently stated to

“The reason I like UMass and Western Kentucky so much is because I think the coaches let their point guards run the show,” Traynham said. “Not do whatever they want to do but it’s just my style the way both of those teams play.

“(UMass has) a lot of great wings this year. I like how they run and play hard, they play hard-nosed defense. I like the way they work.” (Source)

Traynham's Profile

Darrin Horn Earns Raise, Extension at South Carolina

SEC Basketball Coach
USC men's basketball coach Darrin Horn is receiving a raise and a contract extension.

A revision to Horn's contract is on the agenda for Monday's meeting of the USC board of trustees. Several sources said Horn is expected to get a raise of $300,000, and the length of his deal will also be increased by an unknown amount.

Horn's current contract annually pays him $800,000 plus incentives. He is in the second year of a five-year deal he signed upon being hired before the 2008-09 season.


Darrin Horn is a Kentucky native and played guard for the Tates Creek High School and then Western Kentucky University. After serving as an assistant to Tom Crean at Marquette, he became the head coach at WKU. As Hilltopper coach, he went 111-48 in five seasons, including an appearance int he 2008 NCAA Sweet 16.

NCAA DI Help on the Way for the Georgetown Tigers?

NAIA Basketball
There are some rumors circulating that the Georgetown Tigers are close to bringing in at least one and possibly two NCAA DI transfers for the second semester.

Reports indicate that Tigers' head coach Happy Osborne has been searching nationwide for help after his team struggled with injury problems during the first semester. Here is one such report:

At Georgetown, they have suffered through some early season injuries. But reinforcements may be on the way. At one point they had just 7 healthy players. A knee injury to starting post Maurice Pearson has particularly bothered the Tigers. In a recent Louisville Courier Journal interview, Coach Happy Osborne said he has sent out the call across the NCAA DI ranks that he wants to bring in at least two players at the Christmas break. (Source)

NOTE: I have heard from an unverified source that Osborne has all but locked up an ACC transfer that is un"happy" with playing time at his current team.

Kentucky Basketball: DeAndre Liggins Will... back with the team on Saturday and he will be available to play.

This comes from Jeff Goodman on via Twitter:

goodmanonfox Source close to KY soph. DeAndre Liggins just told me he isn't transferring at break and will be back with team and available to play Sat.

There were rumors of Liggins leaving the team, but that is not the case.

Is John Wall the Best Basketball Freshman Ever?

Mike DeCourcy of breaks down five topics that are currently in his sport's headlines. The first question on the list:

1. Where does Kentucky's John Wall rank in terms of college freshmen you've seen—regardless of position?

An excerpt of DeCourcy's thoughts:

The next logical step is to wonder if Wall compares to the best of freshmen: Kevin Durant at Texas, Chris Jackson at LSU, Phil Ford at North Carolina, Kenny Anderson at Georgia Tech, Mark Aguirre at DePaul.

With the limited information eight games provides, Wall would be the choice over any of them.

As great as Durant, Jackson and Aguirre were as scorers, a gifted point guard is going to affect the game in so many more ways. Wall directs the team's offense and fronts the team's defense. Unless he is inadequate in these areas—and he has been exceptional—Wall has an inherent advantage.

Complete Article

Danero Thomas Named Pepsi Athlete of the Week

Murray State Basketball
Press release from Murray State basketball:

Murray State sophomore basketball student-athlete Danero Thomas has been named the Pepsi Athlete of the Week for the period of Nov. 30 through Dec. 6.

Thomas reached a milestone Dec. 5 when he scored a game-high 18 points against Morehead State to become the 35th member of the MSU 1000-Point Club.

He is an excellent defensive player too with 135 career steals which ranks him No. 1 in the OVC among active players and No. 9 all-time at MSU. At his current pace, Thomas may get into the top-10 for steals in a single season at MSU.

The Racers play Saturday at 3 p.m. cst in Johnson City, Tenn., against East Tennessee State.

UK Recruits on ESPN RISE Mr. Basketball List

ESPN Basketball Recruiting
The initial voting has been released for the award of ESPN RISE Mr. Basketball. The list is littered with Kentucky and Louisville recruits in the 2010 and 2011 Class.

What is ESPN RISE Mr. Basketball?

The 10-person Mr. Basketball selection committee will vote weekly by listing their top seven candidates regardless of class. The votes are tabulated on a 10-point scoring system, with a first-place vote equaling 10 points, a second-place vote equaling nine points and so on down to four points for a seventh-place vote.

At the end of the season, ESPN RISE will name a Mr. Basketball as simply the nation's top high school player. The voting will be based on this season's performance and not take into consideration recruiting status or other off-court considerations.

Voting Results of the First 2009-10 ESPN RISE Mr. Basketball Poll:

1. Harrison Barnes, Ames, 92 votes
2. Bradon Knight, St. Patrick, 75
3. Jared Sullinger, Northland, 62
4. Michael Gilcrest, St. Patrick, 58
5. Corey Joseph, Findlay Prep, 20
6. Terrence Jones, Jefferson, 19
7. Perry Jones, Duncanville, 18

Others of interest:

C.J. Leslie (Word of God Academy, Raleigh, N.C.) 14.
Quincy Miller (Quality Education, Winston-Salem, N.C.) 14
Tobias Harris (Half Hollow Hills West, Dix Hills, N.Y.) 6
Doron Lamb (Oak Hill Academy, Mouth of Wilson ,Va.) 6
Josh Selby (Lake Clifton, Baltimore, Md.) 6

Marquis Teague (Pike, Indianapolis, Ind.) 4

Calhoun on John Wall: "He is all of that. He’s no freshman"

Kentucky Basketball: John Wall
Excerpt of article by Jason King of Yahoo Sports:

There really wasn’t any other way to describe the mood after Wall scored 25 points and made the game-winning basket in Kentucky’s 64-61 victory over Connecticut on Wednesday night. The projected No. 1 pick in next summer’s NBA draft, everyone knew that Wall was a talented basketball player.

But no one – not even his mother – knew he was this good.

“He’s all of that,” Connecticut coach Jim Calhoun said. “Whatever all of that is, he is all of that. He’s no freshman.”

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Kentucky Basketball Improves to 9-"Ohhhhh! Ohhh!"

(4) Kentucky 64
(12) Connecticut 61

Final from 2009 DirectTV SEC/Big East Invitational in New York City

"Ohhhhh! Ohhhhh! Ohhh!"

- Dick Vitale following a tremendous drive by John Wall late in the game

Game Recap by

The Kentucky Wildcats are off to a 9-0 start on the season after once again showing enough grit to overcome adversity and get a difficult win. The Cats held on to defeat #12 Connecticut (6-2) by a score of 64-61 at Madison Square Garden in New York.

Kentucky blazed out of the gates to take a 12-0 lead early. After UConn regrouped, the Huskies stormed back to take a 29-23 lead at the half.

Kentucky fought back to take a lead just before the second media timeout in the second half. They unable to pull away and had to rely heavily and freshman sensation John Wall late in the game. Wall scored 12 of Kentucky's final 15 points to lead them to a hard-fought 3-point victory.

Wall led all scorers with 25 points. He also added 2 assists and 6 steals, but had a disappointing 6 turnovers. Patrick Patterson, who appeared to tweak his ankle in the second half, gave Kentucky 16 points, 5 rebounds, 3 steals and 2 blocks. DeMarcus Cousins had a double-double with 10 points and 11 rebounds.

Connecticut was led by Jerome Dyson with 17 points and 5 rebounds. Gavin Edwards added 16 points and 8 rebounds off the bench. Kemba Walker had a solid game with 12 points, 8 rebounds and 4 assists.

The Huskies were only 1-5 from the 3-point line for the game, but shot 23-50 overall for 46.0%. The Wildcats shot only 36.8% from the field, but managed to put up 18 more attempts - a result of forcing 21 UConn turnovers.

Kentucky returns to action on Saturday when they travel to Bloomington, Indiana to face the Hoosiers.

UK Basketball in New York; DeAndre Liggins in Lexington

UK guard DeAndre Liggins is not in New York with his Wildcat teammates.

Liggins, who has not played this year under John Calipari, was not at Kentucky's shootaround and sources say Liggins did not make the trip when the Wildcats face Connecticut Wednesday night at Madison Square Garden.

Liggins played in 33 games last year under Billy Gillispie, starting one game. Liggins averaged 4.2 points a game last year.


My thoughts:

I look at this as one of three things, but there has been (nor should there be) any explanation from Kentucky head coach John Calipari.

1. End of the semester and Liggins will no longer be a Kentucky Wildcats
2. He has been punished all semester and this is the final piece of punishment
3. This is finals week and there's no reason for him to be in NYC if he is benched anyways; he is working hard to make good grades

I lean more towards 2 and 3 and I expect to see Liggins back with the team - and playing - soon.

Eastern Kentucky Shoots Past DII Foe Ohio Valley

Eastern Kentucky 74
Ohio Valley 58

Final from Richmond, Kentucky

Game recap from EKU:

The Eastern Kentucky University men’s basketball team poured in 13 three-pointers as the Colonels cruised past Division II foe Ohio Valley, 74-58, Wednesday night in McBrayer Arena. Senior Josh Taylor led EKU with 20 points on 5-of-8 (62.5 percent) shooting from deep.

Taylor knocked down all five of his three-pointers and scored 18 of his 20 points in the first half. Senior Papa Oppong and junior Justin Stommes contributed with 15 points apiece while junior Josh Daniel came off the bench to score 11 points.

EKU (7-2) shot 47.4 percent (27-of-57) from the field for the game and 50 percent (13-of-26) from behind the arc. The Colonels also committed a season-low four turnovers on the night.

Rodney Everage recorded a double-double for the Fighting Scots, scoring 16 points and collecting 10 rebounds. David White chipped in with 12 points.

OVU (1-5) nearly matched the Colonels’ hot shooting as the Fighting Scots went 46 percent (23-of-50) from the field and 42.9 percent (6-of-14) from the three-point range.

With EKU leading by only four, 29-24, at the 5:18 mark in the first half, the Colonels – sparked by three three-pointers by Taylor - went on a 14-2 run over the next three minutes to head into the locker room with a commanding 43-32 advantage.

Taylor led EKU with 18 points at the break on 5-of-6 shooting from deep. Oppong chipped in with nine points at the half.

The Colonels went into the locker room shooting 55 percent (16-of-29) from the field and 66.7 percent (8-of-12) from three-point range.

OVU, however, shot nearly as well in the first half as the Fighting Scots fired in 52 percent (12-of-23) from the field and 57 percent (4-of-7) from behind the arc.

White and Everage paced OVU at the half with nine points apiece.

The Colonels opened the second half with two quick threes from Stommes and senior Dayvon Ellis to give EKU a 15-point lead, 49-34. However, a fast break dunk by Tate Solomon with 13:20 showing on the clock brought OVU back to within 10 points, 57-47.

Three-pointers by Stommes and Oppong over the next five minutes pushed the Colonels’ lead back into the teens and clinched the victory for EKU.

This is only the second time in the last 45 years that the Colonels have tallied seven wins through the first nine games of the season.

EKU returns to action on Saturday, Dec. 12, when the Colonels travel to play ACC foe Maryland at 4:30 p.m.

NBA President Watching Kentucky Basketball Tonight

Rod Thorn, the president of the NBA's New Jersey Nets has an eye on John Wall and several others at Madison Square Garden tonight.

Excerpt of Article from

“I can’t talk about specific players, but you don’t know,” said Thorn, who also saw Wall play here in April in the Jordan Brand Classic. “It’s tough. I don’t care who you are, a young guy coming in the NBA.”

Kentucky features several players who could be drafted next year, Wall, junior forward Patrick Patterson and freshman big man DeMarcus Cousins.

“We’ve got a lot of pieces we’re looking for,” Thorn said.

Complete Article

Campbellsville Hoops Gets Win Over Spalding

Campbellsville 66
Spalding 52

Final from Campbellsville, Kentucky

Game recap by CU:

Despite a slow start, Campbellsville picked up its first intrastate victory of the season Wednesday, handling NCAA Division III opponent Spalding University, 66-52, in the Powell Athletic Center.

The result puts CU back in the win column after falling, 78-63, at No. 25 Olivet Nazarene University on Dec. 5, and it's brings CU's intrastate record to 1-1 on the year after a loss Nov. 14 to Mid-Continent University.

"This was a tough game because of where it's placed in our schedule. Hind sight being 20-20 you probably don't want to schedule during finals week, but it gets so difficult to schedule that you play when you can," CU head coach Keith Adkins said. "We played tonight mentally like it was the middle of finals week. Our focus was somewhere else, and I'm glad, with that said, we could come out of here with a win."

Spalding took a 7-3 lead to start the game, but the Tigers slowly chipped into the Golden Eagle lead to even the score, 10-10, on a three-point play by Nestor Colmenares. The preseason All-American was 0-for-4 in the game until he dropped he drew a basket and a foul with 9:46 to play in the opening half. While Colmenares was silent in the first 10 minutes of the game, he scored 13 the remainder of the half. His three-point play started a 24-4 run to enter halftime with a 33-14 lead.

Spalding had 14 turnovers in the first half and shot 22.7 percent, but a halftime talk from coach Kevin Gray appeared to reverse the Golden Eagles' shooting woes. Spalding shot 66.7 percent in the second half, but was unable to cut lead any closer than 14 points.

Colmenares led CU with 24 points and had nine rebounds, while Caleb Harris had 11. Brett Crittenden of Tribune, Kan., scored the Tigers' first five points of the game and finished with seven.

"We were slow getting started to say the least, but Brett gave us a spark. He's always going to give you a lift with his effort and with his defense. He hit some buckets early that woke everybody else up," Adkins said.

Spalding leading scorer DeWhon McAfee led the Golden Eagles with 16 points.

CU (8-3) travels to Cumberland University on Monday for an 8 p.m. game.

New Jersey Nets Didn't Twit on Terrence Williams After All

It now appears that the New Jersey Nets did not bench rookie Terrence Williams because of a series of negative posts on Twitter, after all.

It turns out that the ex-Louisville Cardinal actually missed the bus to the morning shootaround on Tuesday. That mistake sent Williams to the bench for Tuesday night's game.

In addition to missing the team bus, Williams also stayed out late Monday night and was asked to run steps at the United Center as punishment.

As if that was not enough, the Nets' first round draft pick then went to the social network tool Twitter to unload his frustration.

Head coach Kiki Vandeweghe chalked it up as "a rookie rough spot."


UCONN Basketball Blog: Our Cal is Better Than Your Cal says their Cal (Jim Calhoun) is greater than Kentucky's Cal (John Calipari). Here are a few excerpts from their game preview for tonight's showdown at Madison Square Garden:

UConn’s probably going to lose tonight. Kentucky has returned to their place in the college hoops elite, and they’re doing it with one of the most impressive group of athletes I’ve seen since the 2006 UConn team.

Their coach may be a no-good dirty squid who would use smiling schoolchildren as bait if it let him bring in Godzilla to play the 5, but damn if the man can’t get his record wiped clean by the NCAA after leaving a program assemble a team to run his offense.

John Wall and Patrick Patterson scare the living hell out of me. UConn appears to be a ridiculously flawed team that deserves to be nowhere near the top 20 at the moment.

It theoretically should add up to the Wildcats opening a can of whoop-ass on UConn tonight at the World’s Most Famous Arena.

While it could get that bad, ultimately I think Kentucky ends up winning by 5-10 points. Anything above that is gravy and most likely a big step forward for this team as it awaits the return of Ater Majok. At the very least, it means UConn fans (and hopefully players) can head into tonight’s game feeling no pressure.

My cardinal rule in life: if you have expectations of failure, then you’ll always be 1) correct or 2) successful. I can be happy either way.

Complete Article

Maurice Harkless Commits to Connecticut

As expected (and reported by the guys at earlier in the week), 2011 forward Maurice Harkless has committed to the Connecticut Huskies.

His final list contained UConn, Seton Hall, Kentucky, St. Johns and Fordham.

I heard someone pretty close to the situation state that Harkless did not have an offer from Kentucky.

Harkless does plan to attend the Connecticut/Kentucky game at Madison Square Garden tonight.

Article from about the commitment

Kentucky and U of L are After JUCO Star Ricardo Ratliffe

Basketball Recruit Ricardo Ratliffe
I had a nice conversation with Ricardo Ratliffe, the top-rated JUCO basketball player in the nation by, this morning about basketball and the ever-increasing interest he is earning from high-major NCAA DI schools. Ratliffe is a powerful big man at Central Florida Community College in Ocala, Florida.

We sat down for a Q&A:

Ricardo, thank you for taking the time to speak with me this morning. Sometimes it can be difficult to find specific information on JUCO players. If you don't mind, tell me a little about your game and list some of your strengths on the court.

My game is aggressive. I like to bang around inside and I like contact. I feel that my strengths are going to my left, offensive rebounding, good positioning and outside shooting. I also have the ability to dribble in the open court, if needed.

In researching you, I discovered that you are earning some big-time DI interest. How is the recruiting process going for you? Do you have a list of favorites at this point?

The whole recruiting process is kind of hectic at time. I receive lots of different calls each day and sometimes it's hard trying to figure out which schools are real and which ones are kind of filling me full of bull. As of right now, my final list includes Missouri, Louisville, Clemson, Cincinnati, Alabama, Arkansas, Oklahoma and LSU.

There has been a rumor floating around here locally that you are being recruited by Kentucky. Is that the case or is that completely false?

Yeah, they have recently started recruiting me. I don't know much about them, yet.

Do you plan to setup visits before you make a decision? How will you proceed as we approach Spring?

As of now, I'm planning to take 5 visits in the spring time. I'll do all 5 back-to-back.

So, you are planning to make a decision and sign in the Spring?

Uh, as of now, yes, but that can change.

You will have 2 years of eligibility remaining?

Yes sir.

I noticed that I looked over several profiles of you and each had different measurements for your height and weight. I have found you listed everywhere from 6-7 to 6-10. Can you set the record straight on that for me?

I know, I guess some people just go by old stuff or just estimate. The real numbers are 6-8 1/2 exactly and 238 pounds.

Do you only play power forward or do you play other positions, as well?

I played both forward positions last year, but this season I am just playing power forward. I feel like I can do whatever using my versatility.

Do you feel that you can come into the high-major level - let's say the SEC, Big East or Big 12 - and have an immediate impact?

Of course (he chuckles). I have confidence in my game that I can play anywhere and if I need to change things to adjust to the big-time levels, then I that's what I will do to have success.

Ricardo, where are you from originally and where did you play high school basketball?

I am from Hampton, Virginia and I played at Kecoughtan High School in Hampton.

What is Ricardo Ratliffe looking for in a college home for the next 2 seasons?

I am searching for a good relationship with my coaches, a nice campus and I want a place where I can make an immediate impact because I only have 2 years left.

Tell me something interesting about you that the readers may not know.

I am also a sketch artist and I want to play in the NBA.

Ricardo, it has been a pleasure speaking to you and I look forward to following your basketball career. Best wishes for the remainder of the season.

Thank you very much and thank you for the opportunity.

Hilltopper Fans Should Be Excited About Brandon Peters

Want a glimpse of what Western Kentucky basketball fans will be exposed to next season when Brandon "Snap" Peters comes to town? Peters and his Yates High School team is off to a dazzling 4-0 start and have only been held under 140 (not a misprint) points in one game - last night's 88-76 victory over Katy Seven Lakes.

Here is the first play of the game last night:

Brandon Peters aka Snap slam dunk on Streetball.

Morehead State Basketball Loses Two Scholarship Players

Morehead State Basketball
The Morehead State Eagles will have a slightly thinner roster during the second semester. Several players will no longer be with the Eagles following the break.

Two scholarship players are included in the departures:

- Junior shooting guard John Lamb is gone due to institutional policy

- JUCO transfer David Terrell has left the program due to personal reasons

- A pair of walk-ons will also pursue other options

The Eagles are off this week for finals and will return to action on Tuesday against St. Catharine College.

High-Flying Basketball Recruits for 2010 and 2011

Here is an excellent mixtape that illustrates some of the "high-flyers" in the 2010 and 2011 recruiting classes. You will notice several Kentucky and Louisville recruits in the video:

Forget About LeBron, John Wall is Coming to MSG

#12 Connecticut (6-1) vs. #4 Kentucky (8-0)

DirecTV SEC/Big East Invitational


Two of the most successful coaches in college basketball square off in historic Madison Square Garden in the DirecTV SEC/Big East Invitational. UK's John Calipari ranks fourth among active coaches with a .764 winning percentage while UConn's Jim Calhoun ranks second among active coaches in wins (811).

The Wildcats claimed a 68-66 win over Nov. 10 North Carolina in their most recent outing led by Patrick Patterson's 19 points and John Wall's seven assists.

Kentucky used a 28-2 run in the first half to take a 19-point lead. UK then held off a furious Carolina rally for win. UK hit 7-of-8 free-throws down the stretch, including a 5-for-6 effort from

Basketball Revenge is Sweet for WKU Hilltoppers

Western Kentucky 63
Evansville 57

Final from Bowling Green, Kentucky

Game recap by WKU:

Western Kentucky University (4-3) turned up the defensive intensity in the second half, and behind a crucial 15-5 run, rallied from a nine-point half deficit to hand the University of Evansville (4-3) a 63-57 loss on Tuesday night at E.A. Diddle Arena. The victory avenges the Hilltoppers worst loss of last season, a 32-point setback at Roberts Stadium.

Steffphon Pettigrew and Jeremy Evans each registered double doubles, becoming the first Hilltopper duo to accomplish that feat since Anthony Winchester (25 points, 11 rebounds) and Elgrace Wilborn (10 points, 10 rebounds) on February 24, 2005 in an 85-83 overtime home win over rival Middle Tennessee, a span of 145 games.

Pettigrew poured in a team-high 18 points to go with a career-best 13 rebounds, his second career double double. Evans contributed 10 points and 11 boards for his 10th career double double while Sergio Kerusch chipped in 14 points off the bench.

Evans converted a turnaround hook off an inbounds pass from AJ Slaughter 1:26 into the final frame to cut the halftime hole to 37-30, but Colt Ryan countered with one of his four three-pointers on the night, quickly pushing the bulge to the largest of the game, 40-30, with 18:21 to play. Ryan led all scorers with 23 points on 9-of-19 shooting.

As WKU began to chip away at the lead, first on a free throw from Kerusch and then a fastbreak bucket from Nemanja Milosevic, Slaughter really ramped up the surge with a slashing lay-up with 16:52 remaining. It was the first points of the game for the senior guard and resulted in a quick timeout by Evansville.

The Purple Aces got a bucket from Ned Cox with 15:53 on the clock, but Kerusch's three from the top of the key followed by a Jameson Tipping steal and pass ahead for a Kerusch lay-up capped off a 10-2 run and pulled the Toppers with a basket at 42-40 with 15:20 to play. After committing just two first half turnovers, Evansville made four miscues in the opening five minutes of the final stanza, fueling the Hilltopper comeback.

A Pettigrew three with 12:15 remaining tied the game at 45-45, and a Slaughter triple at the 9:32 mark gave WKU its first lead since 9:51 of the first half. As a team, WKU attempted a season-high 26 threes, converting nine. Slaughter finished with five points to go with four assists in 36 minutes, snapping his streak of consecutive games scoring in double figures at 24.

The lead seesawed back and forth over the next three minutes until a pair of Evans' free throws gave WKU the lead for good at 52-51 with 7:00 to play. Pettigrew's steal and slam on the ensuing possession made it a three-point edge while an Evans dunk at 5:22 increased it to 56-51.
Evansville pulled within one at 56-55 with 3:12 to play, but a big Kerusch three followed by 2-of-2 free throw shooting performances from Anthony Sally and Evans inside the final 14 seconds sealed the 63-57 win.

In the first half, trailing 19-17, the Purple Aces rattled off 10-straight points to take command 27-19 on a three-point play from Ryan with 5:50 left until half. The key play in the spurt was a three-pointer from the wing by Ryan, against double-team coverage and an expiring shot clock, to give Evansville the lead 22-19.

WKU shot just 41.1 percent, including 7-of-26 from long range (26.9 percent), but won the battle of the boards 43-34 and committed only five second half turnovers. Evansville shot 32.0 percent in the second half, finishing 23-of-60 for the game (38.3 percent).

WKU will travel to Nashville, Tenn. on Friday, December 11 to take on 24th-ranked Vanderbilt at the Sommet Center at 8:30 PM, part of the 2009 Sun Belt Classic. The Sommet Center is the site of the Toppers 68-54 upset of #3 Louisville last November.

Complete Recap

Georgetown Tigers Are Not "Happy"

Excerpt of article from

The Tigers, following an 80-61 victory over Edward Waters in the consolation game of the Jim Reid Classic Saturday, are not where GC coach Happy Osborne wants them to be.

“There is a lot we have got to do,” the veteran coach said. “We aren’t close to touching what we can be. When (Maurice Pearson) was there we were getting ready to roll. Now we are recovering from that.”

Pearson injured his knee Nov. 11 against Ohio Dominican and right now Osborne is just trying to get him healthy. The senior does not practice and only plays sparingly, something the veteran coach hopes a 20-day break for the holiday will help to change.

Complete Article

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Illness Costs Ex-EKU PG Jason McLeish His Job

Jason McLeish with the basketball
Former Eastern Kentucky standout point guard Jason McLeish has lost his job with the PBL's Halifax Rainmen after an extended illness.

Excerpt of article from

McLeish is a former NCAA Division I standout with the Eastern Kentucky Colonels and most recently played in the now-defunct Continental Basketball Association with the East Kentucky Miners, averaging 18.6 points and 3.8 assists last season.

“It was nothing off the court, it was just a mixture of him getting sick – he was extremely sick … and then he just came back and had no energy,” Levingston said, adding the team will now be out to find a replacement for him.

“He just didn’t look like he was ready to play basketball. I know that may not be a fair assessment, but he just didn’t have a good camp. He wasn’t the same kid we saw in the summer.”

Kentucky Wesleyan Enters NCAA DII Top 25

Kentucky Wesleyan cracked the national rankings for the first time this season as the Panthers received a No. 25 spot in the third weekly National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) Division II Top 25 men's basketball poll today.

This marks the 295th time, a Division II national record, KWC have been in the Top 25 since ratings started in 1961. Other GLVC teams in the poll are No. 11 Drury and No. 20 Southern Indiana.

The Panthers (8-1), riding an eight-game win streak, will host Asbury on Thursday, Dec. 10 at 7 p.m. CT and Midwest Region foe Lake Erie on Saturday, Dec. 12 at 7:30.

Press Release from KWC

NABC/Division II Coaches Poll (Dec. 8, 2009 – Regular season poll #3)

1. Central Missouri (8 first place votes) 6-0
2. Valdosta State, Ga. 8-0
3. Florida Southern 6-0
4. Augusta State, Ga. 6-0
5. Indiana, Pa. 4-0
6. Bentley, Mass. 5-1
7. BYU-Hawaii 4-1
8. Kutztown, Pa. 4-0
9. Rollins, Fla. 6-0
10. Arkansas Tech 7-0
11. Drury, Mo. 6-0 12. Seattle Pacific, Wash. 6-0 13. Southwest Baptist, Mo. 8-2 14. Minnesota State 7-0 15. Metropolitan State, Colo. 5-1 16. Cal Poly Pomona 3-1 17. Winona State, Minn. 6-1
18. Georgia College & State 5-0 19. Midwestern State, Texas 8-0 20. Southern Indiana 6-0 21. Southwest Minnesota State 4-1 22. Fort Hays State, Kan. 5-1 23. Western Washington 9-1 24. West Liberty, W.Va. 6-0 25. Kentucky Wesleyan 7-1

Receiving Votes: Bellarmine, Montevallo, St. Cloud State, Augustana (SD), Grand Valley State, Stonehill, , Barton, Fort Lewis, Mesa State, Queens (NC), Quincy, West Chester, Adelphi, Columbus State and Francis Marion.

JUCO Basketball Star Ricardo Ratliffe Talks Recruiting

Ricard Ratliffe, Central Florida Community College

- Rated #1 JUCO player overall by

Note: Pay attention to Ricardo Ratliffe; his high-major interest is increasing significantly and there are several local schools involved.

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