Saturday, March 26, 2011

DeMarcus Cousins: Catching Up with Boogie

I had the pleasure of heading to Indianapolis last night to watch former University of Kentucky star DeMarcus Cousins and the Sacramento Kings defeat the Indiana Pacers 110-93.

As he often does, Cousins displayed flashes of All-Star level talent throughout the game as he led the Kings with 18 points, 14 rebounds and 5 assists.

The game felt like a homecoming for "Cuz" as several hundred members of Kentucky's Big Blue Nation were in Conseco Fieldhouse to offer support.

Cousins still bleeds blue, as well. In the pregame locker room, he sent a message of support to his former teammates as they awaited their NCAA Tournament game against top-seeded Ohio State (the Wildcats won the game 63-61).

After the game, Big Cuz gave a prediction.

"Uh, I think it's going to be a close game, but UK...UK is going to come out with a win," he said. "I'm going with Big Blue."

I had an opportunity to talk to DeMarcus about life in the NBA and how he is adjusting to playing an 82-game schedule rather than a much shorter high school or college schedule.

"It's been a big transition for me," he explained. "It hasn't been the best season but I've learned a lot from it and I'm just trying to finish out the season strong."

He admitted that the longer season is tough

"It's tough on your body," he said. "You just try to get out there and get your body warmed up but it's a tough process."

Cousins also acknowledged that his season in Lexington was something he misses greatly.

"It was probably the best experience I've ever experienced," he told me. "I enjoyed it a lot. I really miss it. I wish I could continue it but I had to move on."

Cousins had to move on but his time in Big Blue Nation is something he will never forget. The feelings are mutual. As a rookie, Cousins is averaging 14.2 points and 8.7 rebounds per game. In March, playing primarily in the power forward position, DeMarcus is putting in 16.5 points and 10.6 rebounds.

Videos: DeMarcus Cousins Doing Work Against the Pacers

We had the pleasure of watching DeMarcus Cousins in action against the Indiana Pacers last night. He led the way with 18 points and 14 rebounds as the Kings won 110-93.

Here are some videos of Big Cuz doing work at the NBA level:

Faried Named to 2011 Lute Olson All-America Team

Morehead State's Kenneth Faried was named to the 2011 Lute Olson All-America Team on Friday. Here is some information on the Lute Olson Team from

The Lute Olson Award is presented annually to the nation’s top Division I player who has played at least two seasons with his respective team. Freshmen and first-year transfers can be named to the All-America team, but are not eligible to receive the Player of the Year honors.

The 2011 Lute Olson Player of the Year will be announced at the awards banquet on April 1 in Houston, site of the men’s basketball championship.

The award is named in honor of coaching great Lute Olson, who won 780 games in 34 seasons, 24 of which were spent at the University of Arizona. During that stretch he led the Wildcats to 11 Pac-10 Conference titles, 23 consecutive NCAA Tournaments, four Final Four appearances and a National Championship in 1997s.


Harrison Barnes 6-8 Fr. North Carolina
Keith Benson 6-11 Sr. Oakland
Marshon Brooks 6-5 Sr. Providence
Alec Burks 6-6 So. Colorado
Norris Cole 6-1 Sr. Cleveland State
Kenneth Faried 6-8 Sr. Morehead State
Jimmer Fredette 6-2 Sr. Brigham Young
Andrew Goudelock 6-2 Sr. College of Charleston
Jordan Hamilton 6-7 So. Texas
Ben Hansbrough 6-3 Sr. Notre Dame
Justin Harper 6-10 Sr. Richmond
Tu Holloway 6-0 Jr. Xavier
Charles Jenkins 6-3 Sr. Hofstra
JaJuan Johnson 6-10 Sr. Purdue
Kawhi Leonard 6-7 So. San Diego State
Marcus Morris 6-9 Jr. Kansas
Adrian Oliver 6-4 Sr. San Jose State
Nolan Smith 6-2 Sr. Duke
Kyle Singler 6-8 Sr. Duke
Jared Sullinger 6-9 Fr. Ohio State
Kemba Walker 6-1 Jr. Connecticut
Derrick Williams 6-8 So. Arizona

Kentucky Has a Shot at the Ultimate Revenge

The Kentucky Wildcats will have a shot to earn the ultimate revenge on Sunday and again on Sunday if they advance.

In Sunday's national quarterfinal, the Wildcats will battle the North Carolina Tar Heels with a spot in the Final Four on the line.

Back on December 4, the Tar Heels defeated Kentucky 75-73 in Chapel Hill.

If the Wildcats earn a win on Sunday, they'll advance to the Final Four with an opportunity to exact revenge on another previous opponent - the Connecticut Huskies.

Connecticut hammered the Wildcats 84-67 on November 24 in The Maui Invitational.

The perfect scenario for Big Blue Nation would be back-to-back wins over North Carolina and UConn and a date in the national title game for an opportunity to hang banner number eight in the Rupp Arena rafters.

Harper, Pattillo Named to Henson All-America Team

Morehead State's Demonte Harper and Western Kentucky's Juan Pattillo were named to the 2011 Lou Henson All-America Team.

Here is some information on the team from

The 2011 Lou Henson Player of the Year will be announced at the awards banquet on April 1 in Houston, site of the men’s basketball championship.

The Lou Henson Award is presented annually to the top Mid-Major player in Division I college basketball. The award is named in honor of Lou Henson who retired after a spectacular coaching career that lasted 41 years. When he left the game in 2005 he was sixth all-time in career Division I wins with 779. He is the winningest coach at both Illinois and New Mexico State. He is one of only 12 coaches in the history of the game to take two schools to the Final Four


Kwadzo Ahelegbe 6-2 Sr. Northern Iowa
Devon Beitzel 6-1 Sr. Northern Colorado
Denzel Bowles 6-10 Sr. James Madison
Gilberto Clavell 6-7 Sr. Sam Houston State
D.J. Cooper 5-11 So. Ohio
Kevin Foster 6-2 Jr. Santa Clara
Mike Glover 6-7 Jr. Iona
Justin Greene 6-8 Jr. Kent State
Demonte Harper 6-4 Sr. Morehead State
Frank Hassell 6-9 Sr. Old Dominion
John Holland 6-5 Sr. Boston University
Matt Howard 6-8 Sr. Butler
Orlando Johnson 6-5 Jr. UC Santa Barbara
Cameron Jones 6-4 Sr. Northern Arizona
Cam Long 6-4 Sr. George Mason
Scott Machado 6-1 Jr. Iona
Shelvin Mack 6-3 Jr. Butler
Mickey McConnell 6-0 Sr. St. Mary's
Kwame Morgan II 6-3 Jr. Hampton
Dominique Morrison 6-6 Jr. Oral Roberts
Juan Pattillo 6-6 Sr. Western Kentucky
Mike Smith 6-6 Sr. East Tennessee State
Casper Ware 5-10 Jr. Long Beach State
Kyle Weems 6-6 Jr. Missouri State
Keith Wright 6-8 Jr. Harvard

Kentucky Fans React to Win at a Bar in Indianapolis ended up at a bar across the street from Conseco Fieldhouse last night following the Kings win over the Pacers.

While we had no intentions of heading to a bar (it was simply the only place available to watch the game), the scene was certainly interesting. I would guesstimate crowd consisted of about 75% Ohio State fans.

Here is raw footage from the bar as Kentucky defeats Ohio State:

Tipton: Some Disagree with Calipari's Comments

With Kentucky in the midst of an improbable run that has them in position to reach the Final Four, Jerry Tipton of the Herald-Leader points out that "some dispute Cal's claims that everyone wants to be UK."

Here is an excerpt:

"Now, that's a bold statement," North Carolina forward John Henson said the day before the Tar Heels beat Marquette in the East Region semifinals. "That's nothing we could say. He's a confident coach and he's got confident players. And that's what you need to win."

But why wouldn't confident North Carolina players or coaches say the same thing?

"We're happy with the people we've got," Henson said before adding, "I don't know if teams want to be us. I do know they want to beat us."

No doubt, Kentucky and North Carolina will be wanting to beat each other when they play Sunday in the NCAA Tournament East Region finals.

But would victory alone not satisfy the Tar Heels? Does UNC aspire to be Kentucky?

The question made North Carolina Coach Roy Williams chuckle when told Thursday of Calipari's comment.

"It's probably true with a lot of people," Williams said. "I don't think the North Carolina coaches, we would say that, or the Duke coaches would say that, the Connecticut coaches or the Indiana coaches or their players."

Complete Article

The Incredible Ascent of Josh Harrellson

Dan Wetzel writes today about Josh Harrellson's incredible ascent from the University of Kentucky equipment truck to the pinnacle of the Wildcats' program.

Here is an excerpt:

Instead Cal ordered Harrellson to 30 days of going through a half-hour, pre-practice conditioning session as punishment. Naturally, it later got extended to 60 days and then 90 days, a daily cardio beating that both changed Harrellson’s body (he dropped 10 pounds) and mindset (he decided to stop being the team goofball).

“[The tweet] was the dumbest smartest thing I’ve ever done because it got me into shape,” Harrellson said Saturday, in advance of Kentucky’s Elite Eight game here with North Carolina.
“When I first did it, I couldn’t regret it more but now I’m so happy I did it. It made me the player I am today.”

The player he is today is something no one could’ve seen coming. Harrellson is averaging 15.7 points and 9.3 rebounds per game in the NCAA tournament. He played future NBA lottery pick Jared Sullinger of Ohio State to a draw Friday, helping the Wildcats to a 62-60 victory.

Complete Article

John Calipari, Kentucky Players Discuss North Carolina

Kentucky head coach John Calipari and several players talked to the media at today's NCAA Tournament press conference.

Here are their comments:

MODERATOR: Joined right now by Head Coach John Calipari. The University of Kentucky student-athletes Josh Harrellson, Terrence Jones, Brandon Knight, Doron Lamb and Darius Miller. We'll ask Coach Calipari for the opening statement.

COACH John Calipari: First we are sitting here, DeAndre (Liggins) should be up here. I don't even know who I will start this next game, so I guess these are five starters from last game. Obviously DeAndre has been as big a player for what's happened for our team, but he will be in the locker room for anybody to talk to.

Q. Josh, do you remember any particular problems that Tyler Zeller and John Henson created for you in the first game in Chapel Hill? And if so, did you learn anything that you feel could be effective in this rematch?

Josh Harrellson: Yeah, they create a lot of problems for me. You know, Tyler Zeller, he scored a lot on me. He got me in foul trouble. So hopefully I am going to just try to stay out of foul trouble, play big and play like I did last night. Just play strong and just try to outwork him.

Q. For Coach Calipari: Can you speak about the level of trust and communication a coach needs to have in his point guard in general, and then how you have achieved so much to that end with Brandon in such a short amount of time relatively?

COACH John Calipari: Well, the trust has to be two ways, you know. I really have to trust their mentality, which is team first, and they have to trust that I'm going to put them in a good position for our team and them as an individual player.

And then there's just a lot of coaching, a lot of talking. I mean, of these players right now, if I said, who have I been the hardest on this year, raise your hand. They would all raise their hand (laughter). And I would tell you, and if they said that I am not hard on one, they probably would say Brandon, and I'd think I am harder on him than these other guys.

But you have to be fair with them. And you have respect one another. Respect their work, what they're trying to do, and then you just do a whole lot of coaching to try to get them to where you are trying to get them to go. Trust is two ways, you have to trust them and they have to trust you.

Q. Brandon, can you give me an idea of how often Coach fills your mind with thoughts of Derrick (Rose) and Tyreke (Evans) and John Wall and what those conversations might entail, and whether you think you have to reach a certain standard to satisfy a guy who's coached a lot of good players --

Brandon Knight: He doesn't talk much about those guys. Once in a while he might mention something they did to help themselves, but he really talks about all of his past players, how they listened to him, how they got better just to show each and every one of us that if we listen, if we buy into the team aspect and buy in our roles, that we can win games, win a lot of games together.

Q. This question is for Coach Calipari, and if I could adjust it for you, Brandon: Coach, what kind of mentality does Brandon have? Is he a gamer, I guess, looking at when he struggles in a game, he still has the confidence to hit that shot? And I guess for Brandon after Coach answers, is that something, is that a quality that you have always had? Or have you built or grown into it having that confidence even when you are struggling to know that you can make that shot?

COACH John Calipari: First of all, he is one of the most conscientious, hard-working players that I have been around. Will be in the gym at 11:00 at night. Will be in the training room icing his knees or his legs at 6:00 in the morning. Academically, got mad, a 91, what class did you get a test, a 91?

Brandon Knight: Sociology.

Complete Transcript

Bellarmine Captures the NCAA DII National Championship

Bellarmine 71
BYU-Hawaii 68

Springfield, Massachusetts

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – The Bellarmine University men's basketball team are national champions. The Knights won the school's first NCAA Division II National Championship on Saturday afternoon, defeating Brigham Young University-Hawaii, 71-68, in front of 2,906 fans at the MassMutual Center.

“We are now in elite company, and it is incredibly humbling,” Bellarmine Head Coach Scott Davenport said during the championship news conference. “It is impossible to describe how difficult this was to achieve. They don't just give these away, and our guys deserve every bit of it.”

Jeremy Kendle and Chris Dowe each scored a team-high 16 points to pace the Knights, while Luke Sprague notched a double-double with 10 points and a game-high 11 rebounds. Brigham Young sharpshooter Tsung-Hsien (Jet) Chang poured in 35 points off 12-20 shooting, en route to Most Outstanding Player honors.

“I don't know if it has settled in yet,” Kendle said. “I couldn't thank my coaches, teammates, and our fans enough for all the support. This is something we'll be talking about in 20 and 30 years, and the rest of our lives.”

Kendle and Justin Benedetti, who scored 15 points in the winning effort, each landed a spot on the All-Tournament Team. They were joined by Corey Pelley (West Liberty) and Jefferson Mason (Minnesota State).

Complete Recap

Doron Lamb Says He Will Return to Kentucky

University of Kentucky freshman Doron Lamb told the media today that he intends to return to Lexington for his sophomore season.

John Clay of the Herald-Leader reported on Twitter:

johnclayiv Doron Lamb says he will be back next year.

Josh Harrellson Stands Tall in Newark

When it was all said and done last night, the Kentucky Wildcats had stunned everyone by defeating top-seeded Ohio State and Josh Harrellson was the big man who still had unfinished business in the 2010-11 season.

Harrellson finished the game with a team-high 17 points and 10 rebounds. He added 3 blocked shots and sent an early message to the Buckeyes that simply said, "we are Kentucky and we are here to play."

Here is the first half play that delivered a strong message to the college basketball world:

Buzz on Kentucky Basketball: Wildcats Beat Buckeyes Edition

Friday's Top 5:

- Kentucky shocked everyone outside of Big Blue Nation and stunned the Ohio State Buckeyes to advance to the NCAA Elite Eight.

- was in Indianapolis to watch the Kings win over the Pacers. Not only did DeMarcus Cousins predict a Kentucky win, he sent this inspirational pregame message to Big Blue Nation.

- Braeden Anderson will be doing a recruiting journal on our site. Here is Friday's edition

- The New York Yankees should be Kentucky's biggest fans in the NCAA Tournament.

- The University of Kentucky spends the most money in the nation on men's basketball recruiting.

On Saturday, Get Ready For:

- The NCAA Division II National Championship game: Bellarmine vs. BYU-Hawaii at 1:00 p.m. ET on CBS

- Half of the Final Four will be filled:

4:30 p.m. Butler vs. Florida

7:05 p.m. Arizona vs. Connecticut

Recruiting News:

- The Dr. Pepper Midwest All-Star Classic is today; Several Kentucky kids are in the event

- Garrett Tucker of reports Saturday morning that Trevor Lacey is no longer considering Kentucky.

The Buzz:

- Friday's NCAA Tournament winners: Kentucky, VCU, North Carolina and Kansas

- Morehead State's Kenneth Faried and Kentucky's DeAndre Liggins were named to the 2011 Lefty Driesell All-America Team.

- Faried was also named to the 2011 Lute Olson All-America Team

- Morehead State's Demonte Harper and Western Kentucky's Juan Pattillo were named to the 2011 Lou Henson All-America Team.

Video of the Day (Boogie dominates the Pacers):

Photo Source

Kentucky Players Talk About Win Over Buckeyes

Kentucky's Terrence Jones and Doron Lamb talk about last night's incredible win over Ohio State:

What a Knight: Kentucky Stuns Ohio State in Newark

(4) Kentucky 62
(2) Ohio State 60

Final from Newark, New Jersey

The Kentucky Wildcats will ride a Brandon Knight game-winner into the Elite Eight.

Knight pulled up from 12-feet with 5 seconds remaining and drained a jumper to give Kentucky (28-8) a stunning 62-60 win over the top-seeded Ohio State Buckeyes.

Senior Josh Harrellson held his own against highly-touted freshman Jared Sullinger in the paint. Harrellson finished with a double-double of 17 points and 10 rebounds. DeAndre Liggins came off the bench to score 15 points, including several key baskets in critical situations.

Brandon Knight had 9 points and 4 assists. Terrence Jones finished with 8 points and 8 rebounds.

Sullinger led the Buckeyes (34-3) with 21 points and 16 rebounds. Jon Diebler had 16 points and David Lighty chipped in 12.

The Wildcats shot 22-48 (45.8%) from the field while Ohio State was only 19-58 (32.8%).

John Calipari's team advances to the Elite Eight where they will play North Carolina in a battle of two of college basketball's most successful programs of all time.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Liggins, Faried Named 2011 Lefty Driesell All-Americans

Kentucky's DeAndre Liggins and Morehead State's Kenneth Faried were named to the 2011 Lefty Driesell All-American Team today.

Here is an excerpt about the team from

BOSTON (MA) -- The 2011 Lefty Driesell Defensive All-America team was announced. Rather selecting a first, second, third team and honorable mentions; the Lefty Driesell Defensive All-America squad is just one team.

The 2011 Lefty Driesell Defensive Player of the Year will be announced at the awards banquet on April 1 in Houston, site of the men’s basketball championship.

The award is named in honor of coaching legend Lefty Driesell, who is the only person to ever win 100 games at four different Division I schools. He is best known for his time at Maryland, leading the program to the National Invitational Tournament in 1972 and its second-ever ACC Tournament Championship in 1984. He finished his career at Maryland with a 348-159 record.


Dogus Balbay 6-1 Sr. Texas
Keith Benson 6-11 Sr. Oakland
Kent Bazemore 6-4 Jr. Old Dominion
Norris Cole 6-1 Sr. Cleveland State
Aaron Craft 6-4 Fr. Ohio State
Kenneth Faried 6-8 Sr. Morehead State
John Flowers 6-7 Sr. West Virginia
Tu Holloway 6-0 Jr. Xavier
JuJuan Johnson 6-10 Sr. Purdue
DeAndre Liggins 6-6 Jr. Kentucky
Sam Muldrow 6-9 Sr. South Carolina
Ronald Nored 6-0 Jr. Butler
Damian Saunders 6-7 Sr. Duquesne
Chris Singleton 6-9 Sr. Florida State
Nolan Smith 6-2 Sr. Duke
Demontez Stitt 6-2 Sr. Clemson
Iman Sumpert 6-5 Jr. Georgia Tech
Jeffery Taylor 6-7 Jr. Vanderbilt
Malcolm Thomas 6-9 Sr. San Diego State
Brad Wanamaker 6-4 Sr. Pittsburgh
Casper Ware 5-10 Jr. Long Beach State

DeMarcus Cousins Sends Love to the Kentucky Wildcats is live in Indianapolis tonight. We caught up with former University of Kentucky star DeMarcus Cousins before the game and he sent a message to the Wildcats:

Season Highlights of Kentucky Signee Marquis Teague

Here is a season highlight video of future Kentucky point guard Marquis Teague:

Billy Kennedy Earns 2011 John Lotz "Barnabas" Award

Billy Kennedy, a college basketball coach who is passionate not only about winning games, but also about training his athletes physically, mentally and spiritually, will be presented with the 2011 John Lotz “Barnabas” Award by the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

The award presentation will be made Saturday, April 2, during the FCA Coaches Luncheon at the NCAA Men’s Final Four in Houston.
Kennedy, head men’s basketball coach at Murray State University, finished his fifth season with the Racers clinching the Ohio Valley Conference (OVC) regular season championship for back-to-back seasons as well as being named OVC’s Coach of the Year for the second consecutive year. In the last two seasons alone, Coach Kennedy’s teams hold a 54-14 record including a record-breaking 31-2 win season in 2009-10.

Kennedy is the ninth winner of the annual award, named after former University of Florida Head Coach John Lotz and presented by FCA to honor a basketball coach who best exhibits a commitment to Christ, integrity, encouragement to others and lives a balanced life. Since its launch by FCA in 2003, the award has honored a stellar lineup of coaches who have made an impact both on and off the basketball court: Homer Drew (2003), John Wooden (2004), Dale Clayton (2005), Steve Alford (2006), Dale Layer (2007), Willis Wilson (2008), Ritchie McKay (2009) and Gary Waters (2010).

Complete Release

Braeden Anderson Recruiting Journal: Playing the Waiting Game

Braeden Anderson, a 2011 power forward from Canada, will be doing an in-depth recruiting journal on

Anderson is a 6-8 big man who will be making a college decision soon. His final list of five schools includes Kentucky, Kansas, Arizona, UCLA and Mississippi State.

Playing the Waiting Game

Braeden is currently in a holding pattern as three of the schools on his final list are still actively participating in the 2011 NCAA Tournament.

"It's been so cool to watch Kentucky, Kansas and Arizona in the NCAA Tournament," he explains. "I hope UK wins tonight and it was amazing to watch Arizona beat Duke the way they did last night."

After the tournament concludes, Braeden says he plans to visit Arizona and Kentucky.

"I'll visit those two for sure if everything works out," he says.

He adds, "If the timing is right, my initial plan is to make my announcement at the Derby Classic game. I mean, there's a chance that we won't get all the visits worked out and things before then, but that is what I'm shooting for."

In breaking down his list, Braeden admits that all five schools are not currently equal on his list, but he is still "going to have a very difficult time making a final decision."

Looking at the Final Five:

- Mississippi State: (Has offered) MSU has been coming on very strong lately. Members of the State staff visited Braeden recently, which made a big impression.

Braeden's comments: "MSU has a chance to be really good next year. It's a situation I'm willing to listen to and explore. I would say, for now, that I'm softly considering Mississippi State."

- Kansas: (Has offered) Braeden took a visit to Kansas and the Jayhawks gave him an offer.

Braeden's comments: see previous interview

- UCLA: (Has offered) UCLA has seemingly cooled on Braeden a bit.

Braeden's comments: "I haven't heard from them in a little bit. They're interesting because they are really on me for a period and then I don't hear from them for a while. I'm not sure where we stand."

- Kentucky: (Has hinted at an offer) Kentucky has "floated" an offer and plans to meet with Braeden after the NCAA Tournament.

Braeden's comments: "UK has floated an offer but we are waiting until after the season to go to the next level. I think things will probably start with a visit with the Kentucky staff."

- Arizona: (Close to offer) Arizona, like Kentucky, is still playing in the NCAA Tournament. Braeden feels like the Wildcats are "on the cusp" of giving him an offer.

Braeden's comments: "I feel like Arizona is on the cusp of offering. They haven't watched me play but they have invited me out for a visit. I am looking forward to checking out that beautiful campus."

Something you may not know:

Braeden hopes to wear #5 on his jersey in college.

He explains, "I really want to wear no. 5 in college. The number means a lot to me. I wore it when I was growing up and it's a special number."

The Derby Classic:

Braeden will be playing in the Derby Classic and he says it will be "a ton of fun."

However, he admits, "It'll be very tough if I choose anyone other than Kentucky, but I have to make the decision that is best for me."

Join His Facebook Fan Page for videos, links and pictures

Anderson in action:

Q&A with Kentucky Freshman Doron Lamb

Zach Berman of The Star-Ledger had a brief Q&A session with Kentucky freshman Doron Lamb yesterday.

Here is an excerpt of Lamb's comments:

2. How would you describe your freshman season?

My freshman year’s going very well. I surprised myself. Coach is pushing me, I got way better. My defense got way better. I’m very excited.

3. What’s the relationship like among your freshman class?

We all go out with each other, we’re all friends. We get along with each other, have a lot in common. ... I knew I was going to Kentucky before Brandon was committed. I committed first. Then, Terrence committed. So I don’t really know [I’d play with them] until last minute.

Complete Interview

John Calipari Speaks with the Media in Newark

University of Kentucky head coach John Calipari speaks with some members of the media in Newark:

* Video from wfan660 on YouTube

New York Yankees Fans are Cheering for Kentucky

New York Yankees fans should be cheering for the Kentucky Wildcats tonight and for the rest of the NCAA Tournament.

The last six times the University of Kentucky has won a national championship, the New York Yankees have won the World Series.

Here is an excerpt from

Well, there is good reason to be that way. Across the past 62 years, Kentucky has won six national championships. Tell me if any of these years ring a bell:

1949? 1951? 1958? 1978? 1996? 1998?

Yes, you see the pattern, don’t you? Since 1949, as surely as summer follows spring, whenever Kentucky wins a national championship, the Yankees follow suit with a World Series title seven months later. You can set your watch (or order your championship ring) by it. It took the Yankees a mulligan to get this right, since the Indians got in their way back in 1948, the only time Kentucky has gone rogue in this partnership.

Complete Article

Video: Jodie Meeks of the Philadelphia 76ers

Here is a recent interview with former University of Kentucky star Jodie Meeks, who has resurrected his NBA career and turned himself into one of the NBA's top three-point shooters:

Kentucky Spends the Most on Basketball Recruiting

According to, the University of Kentucky spends the most money in the nation on college basketball recruiting.

Kentucky spent $434,095 in fiscal 2010. The University of Kansas was second with $419,228. The Florida program was third at $326,306.

Here is an excerpt from Bloomberg:

“Kentucky basketball is one of the most important things in our state and we are going to direct resources to ensure that it stays that way,” Kentucky Athletic Director Mitch Barnhart said in a telephone interview.

The Kentucky basketball program’s spending comes as the state government is struggling to find a way to cover a $165 million shortfall for Medicaid, a federal-state program that provides health care to the needy. The basketball program doesn’t have a deficit: It had an operating profit of $5.2 million in fiscal 2010 on $16.8 million in revenue.

Complete Article

Buzz on Kentucky Basketball: The Down Goes Duke Edition

Today's Top 5:

- Billy Gillispie has a contract at Texas Tech and this time he actually signed it.

- The Bellarmine Knights picked up a Final Four win on Thursday and they'll play for the DII national championship on Saturday.

- John Calipari spoke at the NCAA Tournament press conference about Ohio State. He also admitted that he almost accepted the head coaching job at North Carolina State a few years ago.

- Kentucky hate week continued on Thursday: Dan Wolken and The Boston Globe

- Former University of Kentucky football player Maurice Grinter is trying to pursue a professional basketball career.

On Friday, Get Ready For:

- Kentucky vs. Ohio State at 9:45 p.m.

- will be in Indianapolis to cover the Kings vs. the Pacers. I think you'll enjoy some of the things we will be working on - including some coverage of former UK star DeMarcus Cousins.

- More NCAA Tournament action: Marquette vs. North Carolina, Richmond vs. Kansas, Kentucky vs. Ohio State, VCU vs. Florida State

Recruiting News:

- Eastern Kentucky University and Tennessee State are looking at Deontae Hudson from Muskegan Heights (Mich.). Hudson is averaging 23 points per game this season.

- Matt Day, a junior at Buckhorn, is getting looks from EKU, Furman, Murray State and some smaller schools according ot Jody Demling of the Courier-Journal.

- A source close to Braeden Anderson says Anderson will announce his college decision at the Kentucky Derby Festival All-Star Game in April. I'll have more on this on Friday.

The Buzz:

- Florida Gulf Coast University has narrowed their coaching search. The new list includes Richard Pitino from Florida, but no longer includes Kyle Macy or Orlando Antigua.

- Duke was absolutely hammered 93-77 by Arizona on Thursday night.

- Shelvin Mack and Butler have advanced to the Elite 8 after defeating Wisconsin 61-54.

- Florida defeated BYU 83-74 and UConn got past San Diego State 74-67.

- Head coach Doug Johnson resigned at Nelson County.

Video of the Day (Highlights from Wizards vs. Clippers):

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Bellarmine University is Headed to the National Title Game

(2) Bellarmine University 81
(8) Minnesota St. University Mankato 74

Final from Springfield, Massachusetts

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – The No. 2 Bellarmine University Knights men's basketball team will be playing for the school's first national championship on Saturday by virtue of an 81-74 win over No. 8 Minnesota State University Mankato on Thursday evening in an NCAA Division II Semifinal at the MassMutual Center.

Bellarmine (32-2) will play Brigham Young University-Hawaii on Saturday afternoon at 1 p.m. before a nationwide viewing audience on CBS network television. The Seasiders defeated unbeaten and top-ranked West Liberty University 110-101 in the second semifinal game.

“We really played well and when you are trying to advance to a national championship, you should be playing your best,” Bellarmine Head Coach Scott Davenport said. “Both teams played with full intensity, and we are looking forward to playing one more game.”

Coming off the bench for the 34th game this season, Chris Dowe had a team-high 21 points off 6-10 shooting from the field, including four critical free throws in the final three minutes of the ball game. Dowe also drew a charge foul on Minnesota State's Stephen Kirschbaum with 54.4 seconds to play.

“I don't need to start,” Dowe said following the game. “I actually enjoy coming off bench. There are a number of great sixth men in all levels of basketball, and I try to bring the same focus and spark as they do.”

Complete Recap

John Calipari Knows Winning is Expected at Kentucky

University of Kentucky head coach John Calipari knows Big Blue Nation has big expectations for the basketball program.

As Clifton Brown of says, "at Kentucky, they don't settle for Sweet 16's. They expect national titles."

Here is an excerpt of Calipari's thoughts:

“It’s different than any other program,” Calipari said Thursday. “I know there are programs connected to their state, but none like this. Everywhere we go, they figure out how to get tickets.
“We play whoever, it doesn’t matter. There are 25,000 people in that building. There is such a connection to the people in the state and the program. And there’s high expectations. It doesn’t matter whether we lose this guy or this guy, you win. If you don’t win by 25, why aren’t you winning by 25?”

Tough standards to meet, but don’t feel sorry for Calipari. He is paid very handsomely. And he knew the deal when he came to Kentucky two seasons ago. If not, Calipari could have asked Billy Gillispie, the new coach at Texas Tech, who only lasted two seasons at Kentucky. Or Tubby Smith, who never won over a large segment of Wildcat faithful, despite winning a national championship and averaging 26 wins during 10 seasons in Lexington.

Complete Article

CBS Previews Kentucky vs. Ohio State:

WKU Signee to Play in Florida vs. USA Hardwood Classic

Future Western Kentucky guard Derrick Gordon will play in Friday's Florida vs. USA Hardwood Classic at the Amway Center in Orlando.

Here are the details from

13th Senior Showcase All-Star Weekend

Friday's game: Florida vs. USA Hardwood Classic, 2 p.m., at Amway Center. Dunk contest finals at halftime. Admission: $8 adults (first 500 adults $5), $1 students and children

Saturday's games: Red Unsigned Senior All-Star Game, 2:30 p.m.; Blue Unsigned Senior All-Star Game, 4; both at Colonial High School. Also a 3-point shooting contest, 1:15; and dunk contest, 1:45. Admission: $5.

Team Florida roster: Chris Bryant, Tallahassee Rickards, 6-8 (undecided); Adonis Burbage, Orlando Christian Prep, 6-5 (Central Connecticut State); Will Cummings, Jacksonville Providence, 6-1 (Temple); Rod Days, Weston Sagemont, 6-6 (UCF); Adrian Diaz, Hialeah Miami Lakes, 6-11 (Kansas State); Tim Dixon, Oldsmar Christian, 6-10 (Georgia); Shane Larkin, Dr. Phillips, 6-0 (DePaul); Steve Moundou-Missi, Montverde Academy, 6-7 (Harvard); Daniel Sapp, Oakland Park Northeast, 6-3 (Clemson); Kasey Wilson, North Port, 6-7 (UCF). Coach: Jim Martin, Jacksonville Providence.

Team USA roster: Malcolm Brogdon, Greater Atlanta Christian, 6-5 (Virginia); Robert Brown, Hargrave Military (Va.), 6-5 (Virginia Tech); Bishop Daniels, Word of God (N.C.), 6-3 (Miami); Anthony Gill, Charlotte Christian (N.C.), 6-8 (South Carolina); Derrick Gordon, St. Patrick (N.J.), 6-3 (Western Kentucky); Tyler Harris, St. Benedicts (N.J.), 6-9 (North Carolina State); Chasson Randle, Rock Island (Ill.), 6-2 (Stanford); Deville Smith, Calloway (Miss.), 6-0 (Mississippi State); Stevie Taylor, Lincoln (Ohio), 5-10 (Ohio); Joseph Uchebo, Word of God (N.C.), 6-10 (N.C. State). Coach: David Davis, Trinity Prep

John Calipari Talks Ohio State at NCAA Press Conference

Here is an excerpt of John Calipari's comments at the pre-Ohio State press conference:

THE MODERATOR: We are joined now by the University of Kentucky head coach, John Calipari. Coach Calipari will make an opening statement and then take questions.

COACH John Calipari: We're excited to be here and happy we're still playing. And knowing we're playing against a really good opponent. No. 1 team in the country, so we know we have a challenge ahead of us.

THE MODERATOR: If have you a question for Coach Calipari.

Q. John, would you talk about Brandon Knight and the way he progressed through this season? And what are you most happy with in facets of his game that improved as the year has gone on?

COACH John Calipari: Probably the best thing that happened to Brandon was Hawaii. Where we played top-notch opponents and he -- at that time we all know and he realized that he had a ways to go. Since that time it has been a steady climb. And he's such a hard worker and so conscientious he has just gotten better and better.

The way we play, where you have the ability to create and do things, you've got to also balance that with running a team. So the point guards that I've had, that's been the challenge. And they all catch it at different parts of the year, whether it was Derrick or Tyreke or John and now Brandon. And good for us, that they have been playing their best, all of those guys played their best toward the end of the season.

Q. Coach, you've had a lot of success recruiting this area, Doron Lamb, Michael Gilchrist. Talk you talk about the talent, St. Anthony, St. Pat's, St. Benedicts, does playing here helping you facilitate recruiting do you think?

COACH John Calipari: Well the second thing is not really. We're on television so much, I don't think it really plays that big of a factor.

But I will tell you that there are talented players here and the competition is so strong. And the notoriety and exposure they get, you're getting kids that are ready for the spotlight so to speak.

Q. John, six years ago, when you interviewed at N.C. State, A, did you come close to taking that job? B, what about it made you interested enough to interview?

COACH John Calipari: Yes, I was close to taking the job. And what had me saying I want to do that, I just wanted to be on the same footing with the Dukes and the North Carolinas. Now let's go. We're in the same league, let's go have at it. That's what interested me. But it's obviously a terrific job and someone will go in there and do well.

Q. Cal, you look at Ohio State and the shooters around Sullinger, do you see any similarities to the team that you thought you could have if you had Enes (Kanter)?

COACH John Calipari: Boy, I am getting some questions off the wall here. Yeah, but I haven't thought about that. You know, we're going about our business and I'm just trying to get us to play well. I've watched a ton of Ohio State tape. There are times I watch the tape and I go, oh, my goodness. And they are really talented. They play to their strengths. They are very skilled. They shoot, they bounce. They have got great strength, they have got size. I mean, they're really a terrific basketball team. And we've gotten better, too. I mean, we're playing as well as we've anticipated all year right now.

But, you know, it is funny in these situations, everybody handles this different. And I think, you know, we're with freshmen starting and with, you know, our veteran players not being as experienced, this is an interesting thing. Someone will know you know how you play, I have no idea. I think we will be prepared. I like my team. I have liked them from day one. But, you know, we'll see.

Q. John, one of the few times since have you been here you are actually an underdog going into it. Do you approach it differently with your team from the motivational side?

COACH John Calipari: Well, at this point it's just two teams going at each other and obviously they've had a wonderful year and they are the No. 1 team in the country. But we're a Top 10 team, also. And we're not -- our players have watched -- other than if they watched Ohio State on TV we have showed them no Ohio State tape yet, which is typical for us. This is no different than any other game. They have seen no scouting report, which they won't see. We are worried about us. We are worried about us playing well. We'll give them what they need to play this game. But to this point we have been focused on us and I am not worried about who is favored, who is not favored, who is the underdog or who is the favorite. None of that matters in this stuff.

There is so much more that goes into it and players dealing with all this other stuff. And an inexperienced team like mine, it is hard to predict how they will come out and do that with the lights on the way they are.

Q. John, when you look at around the country this year I think the criticism has been there has not been a, quote, complete team anywhere in the country. Is it Ohio State close to it?

COACH John Calipari: There have been a couple. Kansas, there are times I have seen those two teams play and I am like, man, I hope we don't have to play them. And I think those two teams have separated a little bit. But there's another grouping of about seven or eight teams that are right there. And, you know, I think over years there was really a clear-cut two or three teams, and I think these two separated from the rest and I think they are that good. And they deserve the accolades that both of the teams are getting. The way they are playing, they deserve.

Complete Transcript

Details of Billy Gillispie's Contract at Texas Tech

The details of Billy Gillispie's contract at Texas Tech University have been made public.
The former University of Kentucky head coach will earn $800,000 base salary for each of his five seasons at Texas Tech.

He will also have an opportunity to earn the following incentives:

*$25,000 for making the NCAA Tournament
*$50,000 for making the Sweet 16
*$100,000 for making the Final Four
*$250,000 for winning the national title
*$10,000 for being named Big 12 coach of the year
*$25,000 for being named national coach of the year
The contract's termination rights for cause include: Coach's material violation of local, state or federal laws; Coach's commission of an act of moral turpitude or Coach's engaging of Objectionable Behavior.

The actual contract can be viewed here.

Doug Collins is Surprised When Jodie Meeks Misses

In case you haven't noticed, former University of Kentucky star Jodie Meeks is making quite a name for himself in the NBA.

It seemed as if Meeks would never get his opportunity to shine at the NBA level but that opportunity presented itself and Meeks has made the most of his chance.

In last night's 105-100 win over Atlanta, Meeks was 5-for-6 from three-point land. He has now made 121 shots from long range, which ranks 13th in the entire NBA. His three-point shooting percentage (42%) ranks 15th in the league. Those are impressive numbers for a player who wasn't even on the 12-man active roster to start the season.

Meeks is averaging 10.5 points and shooting 90.1% from the free throw line this season.

More importantly, he has given the 76ers a huge boost of outside shooting and energy.

Here is an excerpt of comments from Philadelphia coach Doug Collins and Meeks:

"I'm surprised when he misses (a 3-pointer)," said Sixers coach Doug Collins. "When he makes a 3, it excites our whole team."

Meeks has such a quick release and is so effective shooting from distance that other teams are giving him plenty of attention on the perimeter. Yet he's still been able to knock down multiple 3s in 22 of the Sixers' last 26 games.

"Every time I get out on the court, there's definitely my man guarding me and the whole team shades my way," Meeks said. "I look at is as a compliment. Not only that, but (the attention) opens it up for players on our team. They can't really double Elton Brand, so he gets 1-on-1 coverage every night."


Boston Globe Asks: Is Calipari Bad for College Basketball?

Two guys from The Boston Globe recently debated the question: Is Calipari bad for college basketball?

With the cheap shot comments and snide remarks, it's plain to see how these two goons feel about Calipari:

Former Louisville Star Samaki Walker Nearing a Championship

Former University of Louisville star Samaki Walker and Al Jalaa Aleppo are on the brink of winning a championship in the WABA League.

Jalaa, which plays the regular season in Syria's top-level D1 League, leads Al Riyadi 2-0 in the best-of-five championship series.

In the 79-67 game two win, Walker led all scorers with 33 points. He also pulled down a game-high 12 rebounds.

The former Louisville star has enjoyed a long professional career that included 10 years as a journeyman in the NBA.

He played last season in South Korea before heading to Syria in 2010-11.


NCAA Tournament Schedule for Sweet 16 Games

Here is a complete schedule for NCAA Tournament action on Thursday and Friday:


Tip (ET) Network Site Game Play-by-Play/Analyst//Reporter
7:15PM CBS Anaheim San Diego St. vs. UCONN Lundquist/Raftery//Visser
7:27PM TBS New Orleans Florida vs. BYU Johnson/Elmore/Miller//Snider
9:45PM CBS Anaheim Duke vs. Arizona Lundquist/Raftery//Visser
9:57PM TBS New Orleans Wisconsin vs. Butler Johnson/Elmore/Miller//Snider


Tip (ET) Network Site Game Play-by-Play/Analyst//Reporter
7:15PM CBS Newark UNC vs. Marquette Nantz/Kellogg//Wolfson
7:27PM TBS San Antonio Kansas vs. Richmond Albert/Kerr//Sager
9:45PM CBS Newark Ohio State vs. Kentucky Nantz/Kellogg//Wolfson
9:57PM TBS San Antonio Florida State vs. VCU Albert/Kerr//Sager

All times are ET. Check your local listings

Donovan, Parsons Respond to Interesting Questions

Florida's Billy Donovan and Chandler Parsons were asked some "interesting" questions about BYU's honor code violations yesterday during their NCAA press conference. Check out their responses:

Breaking sports news video. MLB, NFL, NBA, NHL highlights and more.

Maurice Grinter Finds Basketball Success After Kentucky Football Career

Former University of Kentucky football player Maurice Grinter has enjoyed a great deal of success on the basketball court.

Following a four-year football career in Lexington, the former Fairdale High School star transferred to Missouri University of Science and Technology to play basketball.

Grinter started 22 games this season and averaged 9.4 points and 6.3 rebounds, which led the team.

Missouri University of Science and Technology is a member of the Great Lakes Valley Conference, which features Kentucky schools Bellarmine, Kentucky Wesleyan and Northern Kentucky.

At Fairdale, Grinter was a four-year starter and finished third on the school's all-time scoring list with 1,721 points and second in rebounding with 797 boards. He earned first-team all-state honors from the Courier-Journal as a senior and was named to the second-team as a junior.

As a football player at Kentucky, Grinter had his most productive season in 2008. He caught 12 passes for 162 yards and 2 touchdowns as a junior. He also carried the ball 9 times for 35 yards and a touchdown. As a senior in 2009, he caught 3 passes for 26 yards and 1 touchdown.

A friend of the Grinter family says Maurice is close to signing and agent and will seek a professional basketball career overseas.

Wolken: John Calipari Looking for Title and Redemption

Dan Wolken, who previously covered the Memphis Tigers during John Calipari's tenure, has written an article about the University of Kentucky head coach today.

Wolken says Calipari enters the Sweet 16 looking for a title and redemption.

Here is an excerpt:

Only it hasn't happened that way at all. Two months after taking the job, the NCAA investigation involving Derrick Rose's SAT surfaced at Memphis, eventually making him the first coach ever to have two Final Fours vacated. But even as Calipari tried to distance himself from Memphis, the drumbeat of scandal got louder in Lexington.

In his first season at Kentucky, a controversy erupted around guard Eric Bledsoe, who allegedly gained eligibility due to a high school grade change. Kentucky was forced to issue a statement last summer when the Chicago Sun-Times suggested rumors of a $200,000 payment to Anthony Davis, a 6-foot-11 forward who will arrive in Lexington next year. And Enes Kanter, a skilled Turkish center, was ruled permanently ineligible by the NCAA last fall for playing pro basketball in Europe.

No Matter how hard he tried to run from who he is, Kentucky didn't change a thing about Calipari. He's still rich, still winning and still the most controversial coach in America. It's not paranoia if they really are out to get you.

Allen, Faulkner Earn Academic Honors in Big South Conference

Former Kentucky high school stars Walt Allen and Evan Faulkner earned recognition from the Big South Conference for their hard work in the classroom.

Both players were named to the league's All-Academic Team following the season and Allen was named Scholar-Athlete of the Year.

Allen won Mr. Basketball in Kentucky as a senior at South Laurel High School. Faulkner was a star during Elliott County High School's outstanding run in the 16th Region.

Here are the Big South Conference league awards:

First-Team All-Conference

Jesse Sanders, G, Jr., Liberty
Austin Kenon, G, Sr., VMI
Chad Gray, F, Sr., Coastal Carolina
Jamarco Warren, G, Sr., Charleston Southern
Matt Dickey, G, Jr., UNC Asheville

Second-Team All-Conference

Nick Barbour, G, Jr., High Point
Kelvin Martin, F, Jr., Charleston Southern
John Brown, F, R-Jr., Liberty
J.P. Primm, G, Jr., UNC Asheville
Evan Gordon, G, Soph., Liberty

All-Freshman Team
D.J. Covington, F/C, VMI
Sheldon Strickland, G, Charleston Southern
Luke Davis, G, Gardner-Webb
Rodney Glasgow, G, VMI
Jareal Smith, G, Radford

All-Academic Team
Sam McLaurin, F, R-Soph., Coastal Carolina
Jon Moore, G, Sr., Gardner-Webb
David Campbell, G, Sr., High Point
Jeremy Anderson, G, R-Jr., Liberty
Walt Allen, F, R-Sr., Presbyterian College
Evan Faulkner, G, Soph., Radford
Matt Dickey, G, Jr., UNC Asheville

Player of the Year Jesse Sanders, G, Jr., Liberty

Freshman of the Year D.J. Covington, F/C, VMI

Defensive Player of the Year Kelvin Martin, F, Jr., Charleston Southern

Coach of the Year Dale Layer, Liberty

Scholar-Athlete of the Year Walt Allen, F, R-Sr., Presbyterian College

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Buzz on Kentucky Basketball: The Chuck Hayes Edition

Today's Top 5:

- Billy Gillispie was officially introduced to Texas Tech fans on Wednesday.

- Here is an update on recruits that Kentucky is still looking at for the 2011 class.

- Check out Tennessee's dream (and by dream, I mean impossible targets) list of potential coaching targets.

- The Bellarmine Knight defeated Midwestern State to advance to the NCAA Division II Final Four.

- The NAIA Division I All-American Teams were announced on Wednesday. Several Kentucky players were honored and Pikeville's Kelly Wells was named National Coach of the Year.

Site News:

- will be in Indianapolis Friday night to cover the Sacramento Kings vs. the Indiana Pacers. You can expect some coverage of our man DeMarcus Cousins.

On Thursday, Get Ready For:

- NCAA Division II Final Four action: Bellarmine vs. Minnesota State University Mankato at 6:00 p.m. ET

- NCAA Tournament action resumes with the first day of Sweet Sixteen games: Connecticut vs. San Diego State, BYU vs. Florida, Arizona vs. Duke and Butler vs. Wisconsin

Recruiting News:

- Braeden Anderson is going to choose from a final list of Kentucky, Kansas, Mississippi State, UCLA and Arizona.

- Trevor Lacey was at the Alabama NIT game Wednesday night.

- There have been reports that Tennessee recruit Kevin Ware wants out of UT and is very interested in Louisville. I'm told tonight that he will likely stick with the Vols.

- Here is the latest on 2012 Kentucky recruit DaJuan Coleman.

The Buzz:

- Former Kentucky star Chuck Hayes netted a triple-double for the Houston Rockets on Wednesday night. The "Chuckwagon" had 13 points, 14 rebounds and 11 assists in Houston's 131-112 win over Golden State. Patrick Patterson had 8 points and 9 rebounds. Former Western Kentucky star Courtney Lee scored 25 points.

- Former Wildcat Antoine Walker continued his hot streak in Idaho's 115-92 win over Rio Grande Valley. Walker had 24 points and 13 rebounds to lead the Stampede to a two-game sweep of the Vipers.

Video of the Day (Crazy ending to a Spanish game involving former UK star Gerald Fitch):

Bellarmine University Advances to Division II Final Four

(2) Bellarmine 70
Midwestern State 64

Final from Springfield, Massachusetts

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – Justin Benedetti scored 21 points, and Jeremy Kendle added 20 as the No. 2 Bellarmine University men's basketball team defeated Midwestern State University 70-64 in an NCAA Division II National Quarterfinal at the MassMutual Center.

Bellarmine advances to Thursday night's national semifinals, where they will match up with Minnesota State University-Mankato. Tip time is scheduled for 6 p.m.

“It was an unbelievable college basketball game,” Bellarmine Head Coach Scott Davenport said. “These young men, on both sides, competed to the maximum. We were the fortunate ones to advance.”

The Knights took the lead for good with 4:46 to play in the game. Chris Dowe picked off a Michael Loyd pass, shoved the ball to Nick Holmes, whose emphatic two-handed dunk gave the Knights a 59-58 edge. Bellarmine continued to roll with a forced shot clock violation and three more free throws before a Dowe pass into the middle of the lane was scooped by Kendle, who banked in a runner, giving BU a 64-58 edge.

Complete Recap

Eric Bledsoe, Clippers to Participate in Charity Fundraiser

Former University of Kentucky star Eric Bledsoe will participate in the upcoming Los Angeles Clippers Foundation Charity BasketBowl Challenge.

Here is a release about the event:

PRLog (Press Release) – Mar 23, 2011 – Audiobahn car audio has announced its participation in the upcoming Los Angeles Clippers Foundation Charity BasketBowl Challenge. The event takes place on Sunday, March 27 at the Keystone Lanes in Norwalk, CA, with proceeds from the bowling tournament benefitting the Los Angeles Clippers Foundation and local children's charities.

Scheduled to attend the charity event are all members of the Clippers team including 2011 All-Star Slam Dunk Champion and All-Star, Blake Griffin; USA Basketball Gold Medalist, Eric Gordon; 2010 NBA All-Star Center, Chris Kaman; and Clippers' rookie sensations, Eric Bledsoe and Al-Farouq Aminu. Also in attendance will be Clippers Spirit Dance Team.

Over the years, this Los Angeles Clippers Foundation BasketBowl Challenge has been incredibly successful on all levels. First and foremost, the event creates awareness and raises money for the Los Angeles Clippers Foundation by donating the proceeds to benefit the local youth through community outreach programs. Secondly, it's a fun-filled event that brings together Clippers players, coaches, fans, corporate sponsors and the community.

Complete Release

Trevor Lacey at the Alabama Game Tonight

Kentucky recruit Trevor Lacey is in attendance at the Alabama game tonight. The Crimson Tide are hosting Miami (FL) in the NIT.

Jon Solomon of The Birmingham News reported that the crowd was chanting Lacey's name:

jonsol Trevor Lacey in the house and crowd chanting his name.

Kenneth Faried, Donnie Tyndall Receive NABC Honors

MOREHEAD, Ky.—Morehead State has received a pair of honors from the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC). Senior center Kenneth Faired has been named to the NABC All-Star Team and coach Donnie Tyndall has been named the District 19 Co-Coach of the Year.

Faried, the modern-era rebounding king with 1,673 career rebounds, will join 19 other players for the Reese’s College All-Star Game. The game features 20 of the finest senior college basketball players from NCAA Division I playing on the NCAA Final Four floor at Reliant Stadium. The game is played as part of events during Final Four Friday, including practices by all four of the teams playing in the semifinals on Saturday, April 2.

"I’m glad that Kenneth will have the chance to play in the NABC All-Star game with the best players in the country,” Tyndall said. “He has worked hard to get where he is and is very deserving to be included.”

Tyndall, who just completed his fifth year at MSU with a record-tying 25 wins and an NCAA Tournament win over Louisville, shares the District 19 Coach of the Year award with Murray State’s Billy Kennedy. Kennedy led the Racers to their second consecutive OVC regular season title. Morehead State, which finished second in the regular season, won the OVC Tournament and the league’s automatic berth to the NCAA Tournament.

Complete Article

Texas Tech Introduces Billy Clyde Gillispie

“I can guarantee there is not anybody that's going to come into this place and play harder than us or better together than us. I'll guarantee that to happen.”

- Billy Gillispie at today's press conference

Former University of Kentucky head coach Billy Gillispie was introduced at Texas Tech today. Here is his press conference:

Dick Vitale Previews the East Region, Picks Ohio State

Dick Vitale breaks down the East Region and says "if Kentucky were in any other region, I'd pick 'em to go to the Final Four, but I pick the Buckeyes here":

John Calipari Invests in Lexington Yogurt Shop

University of Kentucky head coach John Calipari is one of the investors in a new Lexington yogurt shop.

A new Orange Leaf Yogurt opened Monday in the Brighton Place Shoppes.

Here is an excerpt from

One of the shop's investors is UK Men's Basketball Coach John Calipari. Calipari said Monday at the store's opening, he loves it and so do his players. "I'd rather them have yogurt, like preferably the non-fat than the low-fat, but I've seen Josh eat a bucket of this stuff" Calipari said.

Update on Kentucky Basketball Recruiting for 2011

Here is the latest on Kentucky recruiting for the 2011 class:


- Marquis Teague, PG, 6-2, 170, Ranked #2 by

- Michael Gilchrist, SF, 6-6, 190, Ranked #3 by

- Kyle Wiltjer, PF, 6-9, 225, Ranked #25 by

- Anthony Davis, PF, 6-10, 220, Ranked #6 by


- Twany Beckham, Mississippi State, PG, 6-5, 190

Recruits Still Considering UK

- Braeden Anderson, PF, 6-8, 215, Wilbraham and Monson Academy

- Stan Simpson, PF, 6-10, 220, John A. Logan College

- God's Gift Achiuwa, PF, 6-9, 230, Erie Community College

- Trevor Lacey, SG, 6-3, 190, Ranked #34 by

- DeAndre Daniels, SF, 6-8, 180, Ranked #9 by

My Thoughts:

If I were forced to make a prediction, I'd say that Kentucky will add one for sure and possibly even two more players to the 2011 recruiting class.

I think John Calipari would like to add at least one big man from the group of Anderson, Simpson and Achiuwa. There is also a chance that the Kentucky staff is working another big man under the radar. Going with the three that we know, I think Anderson and Simpson will be the top targets with Achiuwa being more of a consolation prize.

A good source called Anderson a "Kentucky lean" last night, but added that things are on hold until Kentucky's season ends. The source said Anderson's final five are Kentucky, Kansas, UCLA, Arizona and Mississippi State. The Bulldogs have been coming after Anderson the hardest in recent days.

Simpson posted on Twitter today that he has heard from Texas and he picked up an offer from Kansas recently.

As for Achiuwa, his name has not been mentioned recently. His junior college coach labelled him "a really good Division II player" in an interview at the NJCAA National Tournament.

Trevor Lacey will announce his decision on April 13 and most think it'll be Kentucky or Alabama. My thoughts on Lacey: if Brandon Knight heads to the NBA, Lacey will be a Wildcat. If Knight stays, the chances of landing Lacey greatly diminish.

The case of DeAndre Daniels is more of an unknown than anything. One recent report quoted his AAU coach as stating that Daniels is no longer interested in Kentucky and has replaced them with Duke on his final list. A few days later, another report came out saying that Kentucky is still on the final list. Based on everything I've heard, it's hard for me to believe that Daniels will end up in Lexington, but stranger things have happened.

Rick Pitino is a Finalist for 2011 Jim Phelan Award

Louisville's Rick Pitino is one of sixteen finalists for the 2011 Jim Phelan National Coach of the Year award.


Mike Brey Notre Dame
Rick Byrd Belmont
Jamie Dixon Pittsburgh
Billy Donovan Florida
Steve Fisher San Diego State
Greg Kampe Oakland
Mike Krzyzewski Duke
Steve Lavin St. John’s
Thad Matta Ohio State
Stew Morrill Utah State
Sean Miller Arizona
Matt Painter Purdue
Rick Pitino Louisville
Dave Rose Brigham Young
Bill Self Kansas
Roy Williams North Carolina

Morehead State Gets a Mention on Conan

Morehead State was mentioned on Conan last night during a segment title "Fake NCAA Mascots That Should Never Dunk."

The fake MSU mascot was called the Morehead State Boy in the Plastic Bubble:

Tennessee Has an Interesting List of Coaching Targets

Tennessee has released what seems to be a completely unrealistic list of targets in their coaching search: on Facebook

The five coaches that were at the top of UT’s list after Bruce Pearl was fired on Monday are:

- Pittsburgh coach Jamie Dixon.
- Villanova coach Jay Wright.
- Alabama coach Anthony Grant.
- Texas A&M coach Mark Turgeon.
- Wichita State coach Gregg Marshall.


My Thoughts: Even Bruce Pearl is laughing at this list.

Kelly Wells Named NAIA National Coach of the Year

Pikeville College head coach Kelly Wells was named Rawlings-NAIA National Coach of the Year this morning when the 2010-11 Division I Men's Basketball All-America Teams were announced.

Three Kentucky players were named Second Team All-Americans. Pikeville's Vance Cooksey, St. Catharine's Kashiff Carr and Georgetown's Vic Moses all earned Second Team honors.

St. Catharine's Ervin Williams, Cumberlands' Matt Daniel, Georgetown's Eddie Gray and Mid-Continent's Chris Ferguson were named Honorable Mention All-Americans.

2010-11 NAIA Division I Men’s Basketball All-America Teams – March 23

First Team

Name School Pos. Yr. Hometown
Brandon Brown Montana Western G Jr. Tacoma, Wash.
Reggie Bunch Robert Morris (Ill.) F Sr. Racine, Wis.
Justin Johnson Concordia (Calif.) G Sr. Tustin, Calif.
James Justice Martin Methodist (Tenn.) G Jr. Memphis, Tenn.
Taylor King Concordia (Calif.) F Jr. Huntington Beach, Calif.
Marquise Mems Tougaloo (Miss.) G/F Jr. Shelby, Miss.
Kevin Swinton Oklahoma Baptist F Sr. Greensboro, N.C.
Brian Wanamaker Texas Wesleyan G Sr. Philadelphia, Pa.
Diante Watkins Robert Morris (Ill.) G Jr. Chicago, Ill.
Eric Young LSU Shreveport (La.) G Sr. Houston, Texas

Second Team

Name School Pos. Yr. Hometown
Jerel Blocker Lee (Tenn.) G Sr. Lake Wales, Fla.
Ryan Brock Loyola (La.) F Sr. New Orleans, La.
Kashiff Carr St. Catharine (Ky.) G Jr. Philadelphia, Pa.
Vance Cooksey Pikeville (Ky.) G Sr. Chicago, Ill.
Andy Garland Carroll (Mont.) F Jr. Missoula, Mont.
Kenny Hewitt Lubbock Christian (Texas) F Sr. Dallas, Texas
Eric Hobbie McKendree (Ill.) F Sr. Vandalia, Ill.
Nick Larson William Jewell (Mo.) F Jr. Liberty, Mo.
Vic Moses Georgetown (Ky.) F Jr. Lexington, Ky.
Reggie Owens Azusa Pacific (Calif.) F Sr. Memphis, Tenn.

Honorable Mention

Name School
Ervin Williams St. Catharine (Ky.)
Matt Daniel Cumberlands (Ky.)
Eddie Gray Georgetown (Ky.)
Chris Ferguson Mid-Continent (Ky.)

More on Kentucky Recruit DaJuan Coleman

John Calipari was in Glens Falls, New York Sunday to watch 6-10, 280-pound center DaJuan Coleman of Jamesville-DeWitt (NY).

The 2012 star ranks No. 8 overall on the list.

Here is an excerpt about Coleman from

Coleman, who is averaging 21.3 points and 14.5 rebounds per game, has been on the varsity for four years and the Red Rams have captured the state Class A title all four years. The junior only began playing basketball at age 13.

"I was a football guy. That's all I did," Coleman said. "In eighth grade, I switched over to basketball. I liked it because I was big, and it was easier."

Coleman makes the game look easy. He is remarkably fluid and agile for his size, plus he knows how to use his strength.

"A guy that big that moves like that, he is very blessed," Jamesville-DeWitt 6-8 junior forward Tyler Cavanaugh said. "He is going to work hard and he'll be very successful in this game."

"The scary thing is I think he is going to get better. I hate to say that," McKenney said. "He is just starting to get confidence at the 3-point line."

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Coleman in action:

Mike Sutton is Retiring at Tennessee Tech

Andy Katz of ESPN is reporting that Tennessee Tech head coach Mike Sutton will retire. Assistant coach Steve Payne will succeed him.

Here is an excerpt from Katz's article:

The 55-year-old Sutton led the Golden Eagles to a 20-win season. The coach at Tennessee Tech for nine seasons, Sutton might be most known for battling GBS, a neuromuscular disorder that nearly killed him in 2005. He's had to coach while in a wheelchair and most recently with a cane.

"I'm a six-year survivor with GBS," Sutton said, "but it's time to retire and leave the program in Steve's hands. We're going to be really good next year."

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Billy Gillispie: "We've had success basically everywhere we've been"

New Texas Tech University head coach Billy Gillispie is ready to get things rolling in his new home.

He spoke to 1310 The Ticket on Monday and discussed his return to the Big 12.

Here is an excerpt of his comments:

You had great success at the University of Texas at El Paso and with Texas A&M but not so much with Kentucky. What did you learn from that experience?

Well, I think when you get fired there’s obviously reasons that people think it didn’t go well; I think it went great. Actually, I was Coach of the Year the first year in the SEC and it was five years in a row for me in three different leagues. That’s an individual thing but our team made the NCAA tournament and then the next year we won 22 games and most school would die for 22 games. So, I think there was a great deal of success; we’ve always had success basically everywhere we’ve been. But, you know, you always have some failures as well. I had a great time at Kentucky as well as all the other places I’ve been, whether it was Texas A&M or Texas-El Paso or as an assistant to a high school coach, so looking forward to do the same kind of thing at Texas Tech and having a great deal of success starting today.

What has occupied your time primarily for the last couple of years?

Well, just a couple of things. I didn’t want things to end at Kentucky but it did, but I think life is about 10-percent what happens to us and 90-percent how we handle it. I think I’ve handled it very well. I definitely didn’t want that to happen, but I used it as a blessing because my mother passed away January 7 and I’ve missed her several times and this year I was able to spend the last two years of my life with her, and I wouldn’t trade that for any trophy.

And then the other things I’ve been involved with is I’ve done a ton of volunteer stuff that I never had time to do before and it’s so rewarding to me as a person; I was involved with Mothers Against Drunk Driving; I was involved with Boys and Girls Club; Big Brothers, Big Sisters; Phoenix House and those kinds of things. I might continue to be involved with all those kinds of things because it gave me a great deal of satisfaction. I think I was able to give them some help as well, so you never know what blessing is going to be given to us at any particular time. Sometimes, it might look like it’s a setback but really it could be a blessing in disguise and you just have to use it to that effect.

You’ve had it both ways in terms of recruiting with Texas-El Paso and then Kentucky. How do you convince a kid to go to Lubbock as opposed to Chapel Hill?

Well, I haven’t been in Chapel Hill but just because it’s a big school or so called big school or a traditional powerhouse, I don’t think…there’s some built in advantages but every school has its challenges, no matter where it is or what their status supposedly is in college basketball. We’ve been lucky enough that no matter where we were, we’ve been able to recruit really good players, and I think the reason is no matter how much success you had in past or how much you’re on television or any of those kinds of things, I think recruiting is all about relationships and we’ve developed a lot of relationships over time. We’ve had success recruiting at Kentucky, at Texas A&M and Texas-El Paso. I think it’s all about developing relationships over time and it’s all about people being able to trust you with their player or with their son. I think we’ve done a really good job in those kinds of aspects, and I think we’ll continue to do that as we move forward.

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