Saturday, April 9, 2011

Eric Bledsoe Was Suspended for One Game


Original reports stated that Clippers rookie Eric Bledsoe was out tonight after suffering a sprained ankle, but that doesn't appear to be the case. It turns out that Bledsoe was actually suspended for Saturday's game against Houston.

Here is an excerpt form LATimes.com:

Rookie point guard Eric Bledsoe will be suspended for one game for violating a team rule, but Clippers Coach Vinny Del Negro declined to specify the infraction, saying he wanted to "keep it internal."

"You have to have things you are firm on," Del Negro said in a phone interview from Houston before Saturday night's game against the Rockets. "There are certain things that have to be abided by and this is how we are going to do things. You have to have standards, rules."

Complete Article

UK Recruits Making Highlights at Nike Hoop Summit

Kentucky recruits are playing well in tonight's Nike Hoop Summit:



Union College Signs Lucas Branch to 2011 Class


BARBOURVILLE, Ky. - Union men's basketball coach Sean Gillespie has announced that Lucas Branch has signed a letter of intent to join the Bulldog program this fall.

Lucas comes to Union from Knoxville Catholic High School in Knoxville, Tenn., where was a four year starter for the Fighting Irish.

"We are pleased to see that Lucas chose to be a part of the Bulldog basketball program," said Gillespie. "He comes with both high academic and athletic success from Knoxville Catholic. We are excited to get the caliber young men like Lucas in our program that understand the responsibilities of being successful in the classroom, and in the athletic arena as well,"

"He will be a great fit in our program both on and off the court."

During his high school career at Knoxville Central, Lucas averaged 10 points and 3 assists a game, and shot 35% from outside the three point line. He also led his team to bids in four straight regional tournaments at the 4-AAA level in Tennessee, and to a district championship in the 2007-08 season.

The Bulldogs, who ended this past season with a 16-17 overall record, captured the 2010-11 AAC Tournament Championship and represented the league at the 2011 NAIA National Tournament.

* Article by Union College

St. Catharine College Announces Summer Camps


JT Burton and the St. Catharine Patriots would like to invite all incoming 3rd-9th graders to attend the Patriots summer basketball camps. These camps have been specifically designed to ensure that all campers have an enjoyable experience, while also strengthening the skills necessary to become a better player. Each day of camp will consist of individual teaching and repetition of fundamentals, competition in a multitude of skill contests, and a variety of live scrimmages including 3-on-3 and 5-on-5. The camp staff will include Coach Burton, his assistants and current and former St. Catharine players. Parents are welcome during all parts of camp and a camp store with concessions and gear will be open.

The first session will take place at Lourdes Hall on the historic campus of St. Catharine College in Springfield. The two-day event will begin on Monday, June 6th, and conclude the following day, Tuesday, June 7th. It will run from 9 am until 12 pm each day. The cost for this camp will be $60.00 and the payment must be made along with a completed Camp Information Sheet before any activity begins.

The second session will be held at Nelson County High School in Bardstown from Monday, June 27th until Thursday, June 30th. Camp will run from 9 am until 12 pm each day. This camp will cost $125.00 which must be turned in along with the Camp Information Sheet before it gets underway.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact assistant coach Beau Braden at 502-599-8471 or beaubraden@sccky.edu.

* Article by SCC

Buzz on Kentucky Basketball: Kentucky vs. Ohio Edition


Friday's Top 5:

- John Calipari was in Memphis to visit DeMarcus Cousins and Tyreke Evans. The natives were a little restless since UK recruit Stan Simpson was also in attendance.

- The New Jersey Nets were fined $50,000 for Jay-Z's visit to the Kentucky locker room.

- Enes Kanter talked to the media about being ruled ineligible and his time at Kentucky; here is Kanter throwing out the first pitch at the UK baseball game.

- Gary Parrish claims John Calipari would leave this season to coach the New York Knicks if given the opportunity.

- Kevin Ware's list includes Louisville but Kentucky is nowhere to be found.


On Saturday, Get Ready For:

- The Nike Hoop Summit at 10:00 p.m. ET

- The Kentucky vs. Ohio All-Star Game at Thomas More College (7:30 p.m.)

- Demonte Harper plays a Noon in the Portsmouth Invitational Tournament

Recruiting News:

- D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera was named Indianapolis-area Player of the Year over Marquis Teague.

- Union College signed Lucas Branch from Knoxville Catholic High School.

The Buzz:

- St. John's head coach Steve Lavin has been diagnosed with prostate cancer.

- John Calipari was in Memphis to watch the Grizzlies vs. Kings; He visited DeMarcus Cousins and Tyreke Evans. UK recruit Stan Simpson happened to be in attendance, as well.

- Eric Bledsoe suffered a sprained ankle and is likely done for the season.

- At the Portsmouth Invitational, Demonte Harper was 8-17 from the field for a team-high 19 points. He also had 5 rebounds, 5 assists and 3 steals.

Video of the Day (Enes Kanter comes up a little short):


John Calipari Visits Cousins, Evans in Memphis


John Calipari was in Memphis last night to visit former players DeMarcus Cousins and Tyreke Evans as the Kings were in town to face the Grizzlies.

The Memphis fans booed Calipari when he was shown on the screen. The fans were apparently upset because Kentucky recruit Stan Simpson was also in attendance. Simpson was on a visit to Memphis.

Here is an excerpt from Sacbee.com:

"I didn't know he was coming – he surprised me," Cousins said. "He came in the locker room before the game, so it was good to see him."

Returning to Memphis and seeing Calipari was like being back in college for Evans. Evans has said his decision to enter the NBA draft was an easy one once he knew Calipari would be leaving for Kentucky.

"It was good seeing him," Evans said. "It looked like he lost some weight, though."

Complete Article

Eric Bledsoe Suffers Sprained Ankle, May Be Done for Season


Former University of Kentucky star Eric Bledsoe suffered a sprained ankle Friday night and could be done for the year.

X-rays were negatives on Bledsoe's ankle but the sprain is a bad one.

Bledsoe only played two minutes before the injury occurred.

On the season, Bledsoe averaged 6.7 points, 3.6 assists and 2.8 rebounds per game.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Enes Kanter Discusses Eligibility Ruling with the Media

Several members of the media caught up with Enes Kanter at the Kentucky baseball game on Friday night:

Kentucky Players Will Take Time on NBA Decisions


Several University of Kentucky players have a career decision to make on whether they will enter the 2011 NBA Draft or remain in college for another season.

Players who are working on a decision include Brandon Knight, Terrence Jones, Doron Lamb, DeAndre Liggins and Darius Miller.

Jerry Tipton of the Herald-Leader says the players will take their time:

Families of several Kentucky basketball players acknowledged Thursday decisions must be made about whether to play for UK next season or enter this year's NBA Draft.

"He's in the process of figuring that out," Tonya Knight said of her son, freshman point guard Brandon Knight. "He hasn't made a decision. Neither have we."

The same was true for fellow freshman Terrence Jones, his aunt, Ava Mashia, said.

"He's young," she said. "It's a big decision for him."

His aunt said Jones was seeking advice from friends and family, including cousin Damon Stoudamire, a former NBA player. "He can tell him what to expect," she said.

Complete Article

My Thoughts: I'm not sure that any of the players are ready for the NBA but I think at least two and maybe three will enter the draft. If I were ranking them in order of most likely to least likely to leave, I'd go with: Brandon Knight, DeAndre Liggins, Terrence Jones, Doron Lamb, Darius Miller.

Enes Kanter Throws Out the First Pitch

Here is video footage of Enes Kanter throwing out the first pitch for Kentucky baseball's game against Auburn (video via James Pennington on Twitter):

Parrish Says Calipari Would Leave to Coach Knicks


Gary Parrish of CBSSports.com says he has no doubt that John Calipari would leave Kentucky this season to coach the New York Knicks.

Here is an excerpt:

But similar to how I stated that Calipari would've left Kentucky last year for the opportunity to coach LeBron James, I have no doubt Calipari would leave Kentucky this year for the opportunity to coach Amare Stoudemire and Carmelo Anthony (and perhaps Chris Paul) with the Knicks.

Will Calipari get that opportunity?

Again, who knows?

Complete Article

My Thoughts: I personally don't think Calipari would leave for any opportunity this season. I think he has more to accomplish at the college level.

Nets Fined $50K for Jay-Z's Visit to Kentucky Locker Room



The New Jersey Nets have been fined $50,000 as a result of Jay-Z's visit to the University of Kentucky locker room after the Wildcats defeated North Carolina in the NCAA Tournament.

Here is an excerpt from ESPN.com:

NBA rules prohibit team personnel from having contact with players who are not yet draft eligible.

The NBA's investigation, first reported by CBSSports.com, was triggered by a video showing Jay-Z visiting with various Kentucky players in their locker room at Prudential Center in Newark, N.J., after the Wildcats' quarterfinal victory over North Carolina.

Complete Article

John Calipari Offers Pair of Underclassmen Teammates


According to ZagsBlog.com, John Calipari has extended offers to a pair of Tilton (NH) teammates.

The Kentucky head coach gave offers to 2013 center Nerlens Noel and 2014 small forward Wayne Selden

The 6-10 Noel ranks No. 6 on the Rivals.com list for 2013.

Kevin Ware's Lists Does Not Include Kentucky


According to CardinalConnect.com, former Tennessee signee Kevin Ware does not include Kentucky on his list of potential schools.

He does include Louisville.

Here is an excerpt:

According to Kevin Ware’s father Wesley Junior, the former Tennessee signee has an updated list of schools that he will consider. The list includes Louisville, UCLA, Georgia, Tennessee, Alabama, South Carolina and Central Florida among others.

Complete Article

Rajon Rondo Has Had a Season of Ups and Downs


It has been a roller coaster season for former University of Kentucky point guard Rajon Rondo.

Here is an excerpt from The New York Times:

If Rajon Rondo’s performance over the course of the 2010-11 season was charted in linear fashion, the volatility in his play would be clear. Rondo’s stats, like many common stocks, have been on a bit of a roller-coaster. His compiled statistics, which spiked early, recently tanked. Fascinatingly, this nosedive appears to be affixed to a particular starting point.

Over the first 44 games of his season, from late October until late February, Rondo was playing 37.6 minutes per game and averaging 11.0 points, 12.3 assists and 4.5 rebounds; while shooting 51 percent from the floor.

Then, beginning on Feb. 24 (the N.B.A.’s trade deadline), his production took a sharp turn for the worse. The Celtics would go on to play 16 games over the next 30 nights. Over that stretch, Rondo (while still playing 36.3 minutes a night) averaged 7.6 points, 8.9 assists and 4.0 boards. His field-goal percentage also dropped dramatically (38 percent). Boston lost seven of those 16 games.

Complete Article

God's Gift Achiuwa Named NJCAA DII All-American


Kentucky recruit God's Gift Achiuwa was named NJCAA Division II First Team All-American recently.

Here is the First Team:

God's Gift Achiuwa Erie Community College G 6' 9" 220

Jeremy Atkinson Louisburg College P/F 6' 4" 215

Troran Brown South Mountain Community College G 6' 2" 175

Ray Chambers Lakeland Community College W/P 6' 4" 215

Jamar Gulley Highland Community College - Kansas G 6' 4" 220

James Harris South Suburban College G 6' 155

Terell Parks Iowa Central Community College P 6' 7" 215

Omar Strong Cecil College G 5' 9" 175

Terrance Tubbs Henry Ford Community College F 6' 5" 245

Kiel Turpin Lincoln College F 7' 230

Complete List of DII All-Americans

NJCAA DI All-Americans

NJCAA DIII All-Americans

Buzz on Kentucky Basketball: Boo Williams Nike EYBL Edition


Thursday's Top 5:

- With Brandon Knight's final 3-pointer against Connecticut, the 2010-11 Wildcats became the top 3-point shooting team in Kentucky basketball history.

- Alabama's Anthony Grant visited Trevor Lacey on Thursday; Bill Self is expected in town on Friday.

- It looks like the DeAndre Daniels saga may be ending soon and he appears to be headed to Duke.

- Anthony Davis has taken over the top spot in the ESPN 2011 recruiting rankings.

- Pikeville College will play Louisville in a 2011-12 exhibition game; the Cardinals will play three defending national champions next season.

On Friday, Get Ready For:

- The boo Williams Nike EYBL event in Hampton, Virginia. Some of the players expected to be there: Kyle Anderson, Brandon Ashley, DeJuan Coleman, Archie Goodwin, Rasheed Sulaimon, LJ Rose and more.

Recruiting News:

- Trevor Lacey now says he'll announce on April 22. He has said that he's down to Kentucky and Alabama but Kansas is visiting him today, so who knows.

- Rowan County two-sport star Adam Wing has verbally committed to Marshall's football program.

- Kentucky has offered 2013 center Nerlens Noel and 2014 small forward Wayne Selden from Tilton (NH).

The Buzz:

- The Morris twins from Kansas have hired an agent and ended their college careers.

- LSU released G/F Aaron Dotson and G Daron Populist.

- Billy Gillispie has retained Texas Tech assistant Chris Beard as part of his staff.

- Former Louisville star Terrence Williams has been ruled out for the rest of the season for the Houston Rockets.

Ohio vs. Kentucky All-Star Game:

- Game tips on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. ET. Here are the rosters:

Kentucky boys:Remy Abell, Lyonell Gaines, Kameron Woods (Eastern); George Fant, Jordan Shanklin (Warren Central); Chris Freeman (Muhlenberg County); Anthony Hickey, Donovan Kates (Christian County); Jermaine Jackson (Iroquois); Tony Kimbro (Jeffersontown); Timmy Knipp (Elliott County); DeOndre McWhorter (Moore); Jordan Percell (Campbellsville); Treg Setty (Mason County); Ryan Taylor (Western). Head coach: Kerry Stovall (Christian County).

Ohio boys: Nate Anderson (Teays Valley); Mike Boyd (Lakota East); Tre Brown (Warren Harding); Trey Burke (Northland); Markus Crider, Travis Trice (Wayne); Traevon Jackson (Westerville South); Blake Justice (Peebles); Cole Krizancic (Mentor); Trey Lewis (Garfield Heights); Delbert Love (St. Edwards); Jalen Ragland (Chillicothe); Brian Sullivan (Upper Arlington); Stevie Taylor (Gahanna Lincoln); Aaron White (Strongsville). Head coach: Robert Krizancic (Mentor).


Video of the Day (SLAM Online Dunk Mix - Including Terrence Jones):


The Knicks "May Have Eyes for John Calipari"


According to Mark J. Miller of Yahoo! Sports, New York Knicks owner James Dolan "may have eyes for John Calipari...to run the front office and coach."

Here is an excerpt:

Unless the New York Knicks make a run deep into the playoffs, the team may be looking at a change up top when next season rolls around.

A source to the New York Post tells the paper that team owner James Dolan "may have eyes for John Calipari . . . to run the front office and coach."

Complete Article

DeMarcus Cousins Talks UK on Grant Napear Show

Former University of Kentucky star DeMarcus Cousins appeared on the Grant Napear show recently. He talked about everything from Kentucky basketball to his "lightbulb" scale:

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Last Three-Pointer Against UConn Was Record-Breaking


Brandon Knight's three-pointer to beat the buzzer against Connecticut didn't change the outcome of the game but it did rewrite the University of Kentucky basketball record books.

According to the Herald-Leader, Knight's buzzer-beater gave the 2010-11 Kentucky team the distinction of being the top three-pointer shooting team in UK history. The Wildcats finished with a percentage of 39.74, which just edged the 1995-96 team (39.70).

If Knight's final shot would have missed its target, the team would have finished at 39.60.

Complete Article

Alabama Visits Trevor Lacey, Kansas Coming Next


It was reported this morning that Trevor Lacey will likely announce his college decision on April 22 when Butler High School celebrates its Class 4A state title.

According to the report in The Birmingham News, only Lacey and Butler head coach Jack Doss know where the 2011 star will commit.

Today, Alabama head coach Anthony Grant visited Lacey. Tomorrow, Bill Self will be in town.

Lacey isn't saying where he plans to go, but he did give this hint:

“Basically coming in and just talking about their style of play,” Lacey said. “It’s about the supporting cast and playing and life after basketball. I just want to be comfortable the next four years or however long. I want to go somewhere where I don’t want to be home.”

Complete Article

Kentucky Recruits Already Talking Trash to Future Tar Heels

Future Kentucky forward Michael Gilchrist is already taking up for the Wildcats.

Kentucky signee Kyle Wiltjer says Gilchrist had a prediction for some North Carolina recruits recently. After Kentucky defeated the Tar Heels in the NCAA Tournament, Gilchrist turned to them and said, "You better get used to that."

Note: Wiltjer was named Class 6A Player of the Year in Oregon.


Wiltjer in action:



DeAndre Daniels to Duke?


Duke's Kyrie Irving seems to think that the Blue Devils are close to locking up 2011 forward DeAndre Daniels.

Here is an excerpt from FayObserver.com:

This afternoon, on a teleconference to discuss his decision to enter the NBA Draft, Duke point guard Kyrie Irving may have let a big piece of news slip. Irving was asked by a reporter if, while considering his decision to turn pro, he thought about how good the Blue Devils could be in 2011-12 if he had opted to stay in school for another year.

Here was Irving’s answer: “That was definitely something I thought about considerably because of the talent we’ll have next year. I think that this year’s team was really special. And I thought next year’s team would be really special if I were to return. I think we have five recruits coming in with the addition of DeAndre Daniels. So that would be really special. Because that would give me the chance to lead the team similar to what Kemba Walker has done at UConn. Just being that leader and being the go-to guy on the team. So I thought that, if I were to return, we would be a really special team.”

Complete Article

Kentucky Finishes Season at No. 11 in AP Top 25


The Kentucky Wildcats finished No. 3 in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll but didn't receive as much respect from the media. UK came in at No. 11 in the final Associated Press Top 25.

Louisville managed to finish at No. 14.

Associated Press Top 25

1 Ohio State

2 Kansas

3 Duke

4 Pittsburgh

5 Notre Dame

6 San Diego State

7 North Carolina

8 Texas

9 Connecticut

10 Brigham Young

11 Kentucky
12 Syracuse 13 Purdue 14 Louisville 15 Florida 16 Wisconsin 17 Arizona 18 St. John's 19 Utah State 20 Xavier 21 Kansas State 22 West Virginia 23 Washington 24 Texas A&M 25 Vanderbilt

Anthony Davis Tops the Updated ESPN Recruiting Rankings


Kentucky signee Anthony Davis has taken over the top spot in the ESPN recruiting rankings for 2011.

Here is an excerpt on Davis:

Davis doesn’t have potential, he has “pro-tential.” In our world, potential is a dangerous word to throw around but when a prospect has shown consistent improvement and the ability to maximize his potential, like Davis, then making the move and ascending him to the top spot makes sense. He’s a full six months younger than Rivers — which isn’t a huge deal — but it speaks to his youth and is a sliver of information in the profile of the nation’s finest prospect.

NBA evaluators at the McDonald’s All-American Game concurred about the two best players and prospects at the event. Their point, like ours, is that a prospect of Davis’ physical stature and skill package is more difficult to come by. A straw poll leaned slightly toward Davis, but was also very complimentary of Rivers.

Kentucky also has No. 3 Michael Gilchrist, No. 7 Marquis Teague and No. 18 Kyle Wiltjer.

The Wildcats are still involved with No. 40 Trevor Lacey and No. 93 Kevin Ware.

Complete Article

Louisville to Play NAIA National Champs in Exhibition Game


The Louisville Cardinals will play Pikeville College on October 26 at KFC Yum! Arena.

The Bears will enter the contest at defending NAIA Division I national champions.

Pikeville is also finalizing an exhibition game against the Mississippi State Bulldogs.

For the Cardinals, it appears that their exhibition schedule will consist of the Bears and Bellarmine University, who will enter the game as defending NCAA DII national champs.

Add Big East games against Connecticut and the Cards will play three defending champions in 2011-12.

John Calipari to Appear at Paul Brown Stadium


Kentucky basketball coach John Calipari and outgoing UK president Lee Todd will appear at Paul Brown Stadium on April 13.

Here are some details from Cincinnati.com:


On Wednesday, April 13 at Paul Brown Stadium, the Northern Kentucky/Greater Cincinnati University of Kentucky Alumni Club will present an evening with Todd, as well as with John Calipari. Dr. Todd will be honored for his decade of leadership to his alma mater, and the pair will talk about the recent run to the Final Four.

The public is invited to join the two for a reception, dinner and program – cost is $45 for alumni association members and $50 for general admission to the event and dinner. A cash bar will be available. Attire is business casual.

Reservations can be made at www.ukalumni.net/toddandcal or by calling 1-859-257-7161 by noon, April 11. Parking is available in the garage under Paul Brown Stadium at $4 per car. For questions about the event, contact Carol Beirne at 513-520-5303.

Complete Article

Bellarmine to Play Louisville, Xavier and Duke in 2011-12

Bellarmine University, still in full celebration mode after winning the national championship, has announced that they will face a trio of high-major division I schools in 2011-12 exhibition action.

The Knights will play Louisville at the KFC Yum! Center, Xavier at the Cintas Center in Cincinnati and Duke at Cameron Indoor Stadium in Durham.

Demonte Harper Invited to Play in Portsmouth Invitational


PORTSMOUTH, Va.—Morehead State senior Demonte Harper will get the opportunity to showcase his skills in front of professional scouts. Harper earned an invitation to the prestigious Portsmouth Invitational Tournament (PIT), which will be played April 6-9.

“It’s an honor to have an opportunity to play among some of the best college basketball players in the country,” Harper said. “I’m excited and have worked hard this past year to be able to participate in an event like the PIT that’s had a tradition of showcasing many great college athletes.”

Harper, a Nashville, Tenn. native, finished his career as one of the most prolific scorers in MSU history, including hitting the game-winning shot to lift the 13th-seeded Eagles over fourth-seeded Louisville in the 2011 NCAA Tournament. He finished his career with 1,436 points, placing 13th on MSU’s all-time list. Harper’s heroics this season included two stellar games in the Ohio Valley Conference Tournament that earned him Tournament MVP honors.

“I am thrilled that Demonte will get the opportunity to play in Portsmouth with some of the best talent in the nation,” MSU coach Donnie Tyndall said. “He was the best guard in our league this year and his game has developed by leaps and bounds during his four years as an Eagle. His skillswill give him the opportunity to have a successful professional career.”

Each year the PIT invites 64 of the best college basketball seniors to play in a four-day, 12 game tournament in front NBA team representatives. NBA stars like John Stockton, Dennis Rodman, Tim Hardaway, Scottie Pippen all participated in the event. Scouts from numerous international leagues now gather in Portsmouth.

All games of the PIT are played at Churchland High School in Portsmouth, Va. Tickets are$10 per night or $30 for all 12 games and games before 6:00 are free. Tickets available through TicketMaster, 757-671-8100 and through Willett Hall box office at 757-393-5460.

* Article by Morehead State University

Enes Kanter to Play a Little Baseball on Friday


Kentucky freshman Enes Kanter will throw out the first pitch of UK baseball's weekend series againt the Auburn Tigers.

Here is an excerpt from UK Athletics.com

Kentucky freshman men’s basketball student assistant coach Enes Kanter will be on hand to throw out the first pitch of the UK baseball series opener vs. No. 30 Auburn on Friday, with first pitch set for 6:30 p.m. ET at Cliff Hagan Stadium.

Complete Article

Northern Kentucky Plans Move to NCAA Division I


Northern Kentucky University is planning a move to NCAA Division I athletics. For basketball purposes, it's appears that the two conferences in consideration are the Horizon League and the Ohio Valley Conference.

Here is an excerpt from Local12.com:

Dr. James Votruba, NKU President: "There's a moratorium on D-One that will be lifted this fall and we expect to proceed."

NKU has enjoyed great success in Division Two sports, winning 3 national championships in the last 10 years. Votruba pointed out that the school is much more like a Division One school in enrollment, academic programs and facilities than most Division Two schools. He sees Division One as a chance to brand NKU, develop local rivalries and sustain growth.

"On balance, I think this is a decision, not about athletics, but about the university, its trajectory and the role that athletics can play helping us achieve our overall goals."

Votruba mentioned the Horizon League and Ohio Valley Conferences as good potential matches for NKU. A move to D-One would cost the school about three to four million dollars a year. Any decision would rest with the school's Board of Regents.

Terry Mann, Vice-Chair, NKU Bd. Of Regents: "I think there's support on the board to seriously look at the proposal. I don't think that the board has formed any kind of a formal opinion on it yet."

Complete Article

Jeff Goodman Attempts to Defend Himself

Jeff Goodman of FoxSports.com tries to defend himself and his reasoning behind releasing the story about Kentucky's so-called recruiting violations:



Buzz on Kentucky Basketball: Karen Sypher to Jail Edition

Programming Note:

We are in Hilton Head for the week. We will still be live and the will still be updated like always. You may even get some bonus vacation updates and photos.


Wednesday's Top 5:

- Here are some updates on Kentucky recruits Braeden Anderson, Stan Simpson and God's Gift Achiuwa.

- John Wall somehow managed to hold it together in the locker room as a reporter apparently ate soup beans before the game.

- Kentucky senior Josh Harrellson has returned to the world of Twitter.

- UK assistant Orlando Antigua was unofficially mentioned as a potential candidate for the Miami coaching position.

- UK recruit Trevor Lacey was named Mr. Basketball in Alabama.

On Thursday, Get Ready For:

- The Portsmouth Invitational continues with a full slate of games.

- Most folks who follow AAU basketball have their sites set on this weekend's Nike EYBL event at the Boo Williams Complex in Virginia.

- Should be a great game in the NBA tonight as the Boston Celtics travel to Chicago to face the Bulls at 8:00 p.m.

Recruiting News:

- Kentucky recruit Stan Simpson will visit Memphis this weekend and either Kansas or Connecticut next weekend.

- Kentucky signee Kyle Wiltjer was named 6A player of the year in Oregon.

- Braeden Anderson has scheduled an official visit to Kentucky after the Derby Classic. He also picked up new offers from Memphis and Missouri.

- Louisville seems to be in the lead for Kevin Ware, who was granted a release from Tennessee following their coaching change.

- Tyler Brown, who redshirted one season at Morehead State and then headed to the JUCO ranks, will soon visit Illinois State and Wichita State.

The Buzz:

- Duke's Kyrie Irving will enter the NBA Draft.

- The Bellarmine Knights will play exhibition games against Xavier, Louisville and Duke in 2011-12.

- Karen Sypher reported to federal prison in Florida on Wednesday. Wives everywhere are likely breathing a sigh of relief today.

Video of the Day (In memory of the 2010-11 Kentucky Wildcats):


Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Great Moments in the 2011 NCAA Tournament


Jeff Borzello of CBSSports.com looks at the top 10 moments in the 2011 NCAA Tournament.

Three of the top 10 moments were made my Kentucky teams and/or players:

10. John Calipari and DeAndre Liggins: The battle between Kentucky and North Carolina in the Elite Eight was one of the best games in the NCAA tournament. Big baskets by both teams, trash-talking from players, intensity all over the place. Up one with 35 seconds left, Kentucky’s DeAndre Liggins knocked down a 3-pointer to give the Wildcats a four-point lead they would never relinquish. Liggins went over to head coach John Calipari, who hugged Liggins and gave him a kiss. Kentucky was going to the Final Four.

5. Demonte Harper’s jumper/Kenneth Faried’s block: This was another one of the fantastic finishes from the first Thursday. Trailing by two in the final seconds, Morehead State’s Demonte Harper hit a pull-up jumper from the top of the key with 4.2 seconds left to give the Eagles a one-point lead. At the other end, Louisville’s Mike Marra seemed to have an open 3-pointer to win it – but Kenneth Faried skied out and blocked the shot, preserving the first round’s biggest upset.

2. Brandon Knight’s game winners: Both of Brandon Knight’s last-second shots could be top-five moments. In the second round, Knight drove the lane and made his only basket with 2.0 seconds left to hold off upset-minded Princeton. Knight was at it again in the Sweet 16. Facing top-seeded Ohio State, Kentucky was tied in the final 10 seconds. Knight drove past Aaron Craft and pulled up from the right elbow, knocking down a jumper with 5.4 seconds left to give Kentucky the win.

Complete Article

Eric Bledsoe Gets a Block and a Charge on Same Play

Former University of Kentucky star Eric Bledsoe pulled off a rare feat on Tuesday night - he managed to pick up a block and a charge...on the same play:


The officials eventually called a jump ball and the Clippers held on for the win.

Elisha Justice Finds Himself in an Interesting Bracket

University of Louisville freshman Elisha Justice finds himself in an unexpected battle today. Justice is up against Spanish soccer star Cesc Fabregas in TheSportsFag.com's 2011 Hottest Male Athlete Tournament.

There isn't really much more that needs to be said but Justice currently holds 85% of the votes. If he advances, he'll be going against Victor Valdes or Camillo Villegas in the next round.

Orlando Antigua Mentioned as Potential Candidate at Miami


Michelle Kaufman of The Miami Herald says a name to consider in the University of Miami head coach search is Kentucky assistant Orlando Antigua.

Here is an excerpt:

Jones said on an Orlando radio show he had not been contacted by UM as of Tuesday morning. “Rumors start out there with people. But shoot, we’ve got a lot to do here. We’re just getting started.’’

It is most likely UM will hire a head coach from a midsize program or a rising assistant. One name to consider is Orlando Antigua, a Kentucky assistant under John Calipari. He was the first Hispanic player on the Harlem Globetrotters.

His nickname, coincidentally, is “Hurricane.’’

Complete Article

Trevor Lacey Named Mr. Basketball in Alabama


Kentucky recruit Trevor Lacey has been named Mr. Basketball in Alabama for the second consecutive season.

Here is an excerpt from AL.com:

It's the second straight Mr. Basketball award for Lacey, who averaged 31.3 points per game and led his Rebels squad to their third Class 4A title in four seasons. Lacey becomes the second two-time Mr. Basketball in the award's 27-year history, joining former John Carroll Catholic and University of Alabama guard Ronald Steele (2003-04).

The senior remains uncommitted to a college, though he has narrowed his choices down to five schools, with Alabama, Auburn and Kentucky in the mix. He's expected to announce his decision later this month.

Complete Article

Lacey will choose either Kentucky or Alabama and announce on April 13.

Updates on Anderson, Simpson and Achiuwa


Here are some updates on several big men that Kentucky has been involved with for the 2011 recruiting class:

Braeden Anderson

Anderson texted me this afternoon to tell me that he has scheduled an official visit to the University of Kentucky after the Derby Festival Classic. As a result, he will no longer be announcing his college decision at the all-star game.

Braeden has also picked up offers from Missouri and Memphis.

Stan Simpson

I also spoke to Simpson today and he confirmed that he will be taking a visit to Memphis this weekend. He will be going to either Kansas or Connecticut the next weekend. He'll be making that decision on Monday.

God's Gift Achiuwa

Achiuwa will be taking a visit to Cincinnati this weekend. Kentucky has not visibly shown as much interest in Achiuwa as they have with Simpson and Anderson.

Video: Brandon Knight Season Highlight Video

Check out some of the top highlights from Brandon Knight's freshman season at Kentucky:

Bellarmine Davenport Named NABC DII Coach of the Year


Bellarmine University's Scott Davenport was named UPS Division II Coach of the Year by the NABC over the weekend:

LOUISVILLE, Ky.--Postseason honors keep coming for Bellarmine Head Basketball Coach Scott Davenport. Last night, Davenport picked up the UPS Division II Coach of the Year Award from the National Association of Basketball Coaches. The award was presented at the AT&T NABC Guardians of the Game awards show at the Cullen Theater at Wortham Center in Houston.

It was Davenport's second national coach of the year award, having earlier been named as the 2011 Schelde North America/ Division II Bulletin Coach of the Year. He also earned Great Lakes Valley Conference Coach of the Year honors this year.

Davenport, in his sixth season at Bellarmine, led the 2010-11 Knights to the NCAA Div. II National Championship while compiling a record of 33-2, which set school marks for most wins in a season and best winning percentage.

Complete Article

John Wall Somehow Held it All Together on Tuesday

Former University of Kentucky star John Wall managed to hold his composure on (and off) the court during Washington's 107-105 win over Detroit on Tuesday night.

On the court, Wall took over in the fourth quarter to lead the Wizards to the win. He finished with 26 points, 6 rebounds, 12 assists, 4 steals and 2 blocks.

After the game, Wall somehow managed to hold it together during an interview when a reporter apparently farted during the interview (no really):


Lee Todd Explains His Biggest Athletics Disappointments

Outgoing University of Kentucky president Lee Todd talks about his biggest athletics disappointments during his tenure:

Guess Who's Back, Back Again, Jorts is Back, Tell a Friend


Kentucky senior Josh Harrellson is back on Twitter!

Follow him here

Billy Kennedy Receives FCA Coaching Award at Final Four


Murray State head coach Billy Kennedy received the Fellowship of Christian Athletes 2011 John Lotz "Barnabas" Award in Houston over the weekend:

Murray State men’s basketball coach Billy Kennedy was honored over the weekend by receiving the Fellowship of Christian Athletes 2011 John Lotz “Barnabas” Award in Houston, Texas.

The award presentation was made at the NCAA Final Four weekend at the Hilton’s Ballroom of the Americas.

An estimated 500 coaches were in attendance to see Coach Kennedy receive the award from Gary Lydic, vice president of development for America’s Family Coaches. The FCA award was also sponsored by Athletes in Action, the National Center for Fathering and Nations of Coaches.

Kennedy, who just finished his fifth season at Murray State, spoke to the gathering and traced his life’s journey with God and thanked those who helped him along the way.

“I am very humbled and honored to be the recipient of this special award,” Kennedy said. “I am thankful to be at a university that allows me the platform to invest in the character of our players.”

Complete Article

Evan Daniels Talks Kentucky Basketball Recruiting

Evan Daniels of Scout.com talks Kentucky basketball recruiting:

<a href="http://video.msn.com/?mkt=en-us&from=sp&fg=shareObject&vid=ed31b262-b7f6-4da2-b91c-aff21cd713f7&src=FLCP:sharebar:embed" target="_new" title="Scout: Kentucky's incoming class">Video: Scout: Kentucky's incoming class</a>

Davis, Blackshear Talk About Basketball Recruiting



Kentucky signee Anthony Davis, future Louisville Cardinal Wayne Blackshear and several other recruits joined a discussion with USA Today about the college basketball recruiting.

Here is an excerpt:

"When I transferred, I had to sit out a year (of high school basketball)," Blackshear says. "On the AAU circuit, I got to play against all of the top players, and it elevated my game. When I came back to high school, it was easier for me."

Davis went from being recruited by regional midmajors to signing with Kentucky after he played well last summer.

"Nobody knew who I was, and when I went on the AAU circuit, (my recruitment) blew up," Davis says. "Before that, I was being recruited by Cleveland State and DePaul."

Says Cook: "I think AAU is more important, honestly. Everybody is out there and they're the best players. You're on a stage."

Complete Article

Pikeville College Gives Kelly Wells Honorary Alumni Award


Pikeville College presented head basketball coach Kelly Wells with the Honorary Alumni Award during the school's Alumni Honors Banquet.

Here is an excerpt:

Bruce Walters II and Kelly Wells were presented with the Honorary Alumni Award. The award is presented to individuals who are not graduates, but whose service reflects the spirit and tradition of Pikeville College. Walters, along with his family, have been friends and supporters of Pikeville College for many years providing support for admissions’ efforts, athletics and the annual scholarship golf tournament. As head coach of the Pikeville College men’s basketball team, Wells recently led the Bears to the school’s first NAIA National Championship and was named the 2011 NAIA National “Coach of the Year.”

Complete Article

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Buzz on Kentucky Basketball: Spring Break Edition


Tuesday's Top 5:

- Report says North Carolina State freshman star Ryan Harrow is seeking a transfer and he likes Kentucky's offense.

- Josh Harrellson was forced to withdraw from the Portsmouth Invitational Tournament due to flu-like symptoms.

- The NBA Development League season is over for Antoine Walker but the former UK star has enjoyed the ride.

- Kentucky finished No. 3 in the final ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll; Louisville finished No. 22.

- A Kentucky recruit said the UK staff is expecting Brandon Knight to leave for the NBA.

On Wednesday, Get Ready For:

- The Portsmouth Invitational Tournament tips in Portsmouth, Virginia. AllKyHoops.com was going to be there but Josh Harrellson withdrew so we've changed our plans.

- Since we're not going to the PIT, we will be reporting live from a different location for the rest of the week. We'll surprise you on Wednesday.

Recruiting News:

- Kentucky is recruiting former Tennessee signee Kevin Ware for the 2011 class. Louisville is also after Ware and he actually says the Cardinals are in the early lead.

- Austin Rivers was named MaxPreps High School Player of the Year on Tuesday.

- Covington Catholic's Jake Thelen has committed to NAIA DI school Spring Hill College (Ala.).

The Buzz:

- Josh Selby will enter the NBA Draft and hire an agent, uh, I mean publicly announce his agent.

- Georgia's Trey Thompkins and Travis Leslie will enter the NBA Draft; Thompkins will hire an agent, Leslie will test the waters.

- Mark Gottfried is the new head coach at North Carolina State. For some reason, I think he'll be successful (I'm in the minority).

- Pat Knight is the new head coach at Lamar.

- The Lakers recalled Derrick Caracter from the NBA Development League.

Video of the Day (Mark Krebs is WINNING!):

Video: Hanging Out with Kentucky Signee Michael Gilchrist

Here is future University of Kentucky forward Michael Gilchrist having a good time for the Dime Magazine camera:

Recruit Says UK Expects Brandon Knight to Leave


The Atlanta Journal Constitution caught up with Kentucky recruit Kevin Ware and he had a quote about the future Brandon Knight.

Here is an excerpt:

“I’m not sure. I think some others have talked with my AAU coaches. I know Kentucky is interested. They expect Brandon Knight to leave for the NBA, and if that happens, then they would be interested in offering a scholarship. I’m not sure how I feel about Kentucky. It’s a great school, but they already have a lot of guards.”

Complete Article

NBA Stock is Soaring for Brandon Knight After Tourney


Scott Howard-Cooper of NBA.com thinks the NCAA Tournament helped polish Brandon Knight's NBA Draft resume.

Here is an excerpt:

In the opener against Princeton in Tampa, Fla., he missed his first seven shots and was scoreless with Kentucky's tournament hopes in the balance in a 4-13 matchup. But when Knight got the ball in a 57-57 game, he did not hesitate. He confronted a miserable day by nailing a driving layup with two seconds remaining that delivered victory.

Two games later, in the Sweet 16 against top-seeded Ohio State in the East regional at Newark, N.J., Knight had missed seven of nine field goals. He had four assists against six turnovers. It was miserable, again. And then he wanted the moment again, knocking down a jumper with six seconds left for a 62-60 win.

"It was totally obvious," one general manager said of Knight not merely stepping up but thriving in the pressure. "I don't know if he wanted it or [coach John] Calipari gave it to him. Regardless, even if Calipari gave it to him, he took it on with great confidence."

Complete Article

Video: Kentucky Recruit Archie Goodwin in Action

Here is the latest highlight video of 2012 Kentucky recruit Archie Goodwin:

Karen Sypher Scheduled to Report to Jail on Wednesday


Karen Sypher is scheduled to report to federal prison on Wednesday.

She is hoping she can stay out of prison while her case is being appealed.

Complete Article

Video: Kyle Wiltjer at the Nike Hoop Summit

Here is a great video of future Kentucky forward Kyle Wiltjer at the 2011 Nike Hoop Summit:

Kentucky is Recruiting Kevin Ware from Tennessee

According to Evan Daniels of Scout.com, the University of Kentucky is involved with Kevin Ware, who recently was released from his LOI at Tennesssee.

Here is the Scout.com Article (Subscription)

Ware is a 6-4 shooting guard who ranks No. 56 on the Rivals150 List for 2011. He had offers from a long linst of schools including Louisville.

Ware in action:


Kentucky Finishes Season at No. 3 in Coaches Poll


The Kentucky Wildcats come in at No. 3 in the final ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll of the 2010-11 season.

Louisville finishes the season at No. 22 in the rankings.

Final ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll:

Rank School (first-place votes) Record Points Last week's rank

1. Connecticut (30) 32-9 773 8

2. Butler 28-10 704 NR

3. Kentucky 29-9 676 10

4. Kansas 35-3 659 2

5. Ohio State (1) 34-3 630 1

6. Virginia Commonwealth 28-12 555 NR

7. Duke 32-5 554 3

8. North Carolina 29-8 532 7

9. Arizona 30-8 531 18

10. Florida 29-8 503 13
11. San Diego State 34-3 479 5 12. Pittsburgh 28-6 448 4 13. Brigham Young 32-5 376 12 14. Notre Dame 27-7 336 6 15. Wisconsin 25-9 311 16 16. Texas 28-8 290 9 17. Purdue 26-8 276 15 18. Syracuse 27-8 250 14 19. Florida State 23-11 197 NR 20. Marquette 22-15 159 NR 21. Richmond 29-8 152 NR 22. Louisville 25-10 147 11 23. Washington 24-11 108 23 24. Kansas State 23-11 73 24 25. Utah State 30-4 51 17

Others receiving votes: Temple (26-8) 41; West Virginia (21-12) 34; St. John's (21-12) 33; Texas A&M (24-9) 31; Xavier (24-8) 31; UCLA (23-11) 25; Cincinnati (26-9) 24; Vanderbilt (23-11) 24; Wichita State (29-8) 20; George Mason (27-7) 9; Michigan (21-14) 9; Old Dominion (27-7) 9; Gonzaga (25-10) 7; Georgetown (21-11) 5; Missouri (23-11) 2; Illinois (20-14) 1.

Lakers Recall Derrick Caracter from the Development League


The Los Angeles Lakers have recalled former UTEP and Louisville big man Derrick Caracter from the NBA Development League.

Caracter played three games with the Bakersfield Jam. He averaged 8.7 points and 6.0 rebounds in 20 minutes of action.

In 40 games with the Lakers this season, Caracter has put in 2.0 points and 1.1 rebounds per game.

Source

Photo: NBA.com

Tubby Smith Has a P.S.A. for Children's Health

Here is a recent P.S.A. from Minnesota head coach Tubby Smith about children's health (always great to see Tubby doing good deeds off the court):

Antoine Walker Talks About Season in the D-League


The Idaho Stampede missed out on the NBA Development League playoffs over the weekend but former University of Kentucky star Antoine Walker has greatly enjoyed the ride this season.

Walker spoke about the season to Fox12Idaho.com:


"This is a place to focus. I think when most guys try to come back they go overseas and you kind of get lost in the shuffle," said Walker, commenting one how few distractions there are in Boise. "Finally when I got my legs up under me, I've been able to play, and I've been able to move and cut with these guys, and things started to turn around for me."

Walker won't turn 35 until August, so he's hardly an old man. He didn't rule out coming back to Boise in another year, but said one thing is for sure: His playing days aren't over.

"I think coming back has given me the sense in knowing that I can come back," he said. "If I can stay in shape and keep my body together, I think I can definitely play a couple more years."

Exactly where that will be, however, is now up for discussion.

"I'm going to sit down with my agent, evaluate now that I have some current film," said Walker. "This is an opportunity for me to go to Europe. I've never done that before, but I may entertain that, but I do plan on playing basketball."

Complete Article

In 43 games, Walker averaged 16 points and finished in the league's top 20 in scoring and 3-point shooting percentage.

Josh Harrellson Withdraws from the Portsmouth Invitational


University of Kentucky senior Josh Harrellson has withdrawn from the Portsmouth Invitational Tournament due to flu-like symptoms.

Here is an excerpt from UKAthletics.com:

Kentucky senior Josh Harrellson has withdrawn from the Portsmouth Invitational Tournament. The 6-foot-10 forward has been recommended by the UK medical staff to not have any physical activity for a week due to flu-like symptoms.

The prestigious Portsmouth Invitational Tournament is the NBA's top pre-draft camp for college seniors. Harrellson was expected to participate in the tournament that runs from April 6-9, 2011 at Churchland High School in Portsmouth, Va.

“I’m extremely disappointed that I won’t be able to participate in the Portsmouth Invitational,” Harrellson said. “I was really looking forward to showcasing my abilities among the top seniors in the nation. My focus now is on getting well and concentrating on my school work before working out for teams.”

Complete Article

NOTE: As a result, AllKyHoops.com will no longer be covering the PIT.

Report: Ryan Harrow Seeking Transfer, Likes Kentucky


According to CourtCred.com on Twitter, North Carolina State's Ryan Harrow is seeking a transfer and he likes Kentucky.

Here is the post on Twitter:

courtcred Got a tip that NC ST's Ryan Harrow might be seeking a transfer. Likes Kentucky's dribble drive.

Harrow is a 6-0 point guard who was a five-star recruit in the 2010 class. He ranked No. 19 on the Rivals150 List for 2010. Kentucky previously recruited Harrow but did not extend an offer according to Rivals.com.

At N.C. State, Harrow averaged 9.3 points, 3.3 assists and 1.9 rebounds per game as a freshman.

Buzz on Kentucky Basketball: One Shining Moment Edition


Monday's Top 5:

- St. Anthony (NJ) and Kentucky recruit Kyle Anderson were named high school national champions on Monday. They finished the season 33-0.

- Dennis Dodd of CBS Sports felt the need to send a "lecture" to Kentucky's Big Blue Nation.

- Morehead State's Kenneth Faried was named Under Armour Defensive Player of the Year over the weekend.

- In case you didn't know, UK hangs Final Four banners in Rupp Arena, too.

- Sadly, former Scott County High School star Bud Mackey is facing up to a decade in prison after accepting a plea deal in Scott Circuit Court.

On Tuesday, Get Ready For:

- MaxPreps.com to announce their high school Player of the Year (UK has some candidates)

Recruiting News:

- Kentucky recruits Perry Ellis, Shabazz Muhammad and DaJuan Coleman played well at the All-American Championship event on Sunday.

- Southern State Community College will sign Colt Coates of Hillsboro (OH) High School at 4:00 p.m. on Tuesday.

The Buzz:

- Connecticut defeated Butler 53-41 to capture the NCAA DI national championship. The game was ugly and it was a tough loss for Lexington's own Shelvin Mack, but Butler shouldn't hang their heads. What they've accomplished at that program is outstanding. And Mack, who was overlooked by Kentucky, has a legitimate shot to play in the NBA.

- Shaka Smart has agreed to a new contract and will remain at VCU. I tend to think he should have left while his stock was high, but hopefully he can continue the great success at VCU.

- Former Billy Gillispie assistant Glenn Cyprien pulled out of the Lamar search and remains at Memphis as a Josh Pastner assistant.

- Tracy Webster, another former Gillispie assistant, was added to Cuonzo Martin's staff at Tennessee.

- Bellarmine head coach Scott Davenport was named UPS Division II Coach of the Year by the NABC on Sunday.

- Former Kentucky big man Shagari Alleyne is in a "different" Final Four. Alleyne and New York Wizards are in the final four of the EBA. they will play the Destroyers on April 9 at Howard University in Washington, DC.

Video of the Day (Kentucky and Morehead State in One Shining Moment):

Monday, April 4, 2011

Kyle Wiltjer's Official Measurements at the Nike Hoop Summit


University of Kentucky recruit Kyle Wiltjer had his official measurements taken today at the Nike Hoop Summit. Here is how Wiltjer measured up:


Kyle Wiltjer

Weight: 224 lbs.

Height (w/o shoes): 6'8.25"

Height (w/ shoes): 6'9.25"

Wing Span: 7'0"

Body Fat: 11.3%

Standing Reach: 8'10"

Source

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