Saturday, October 22, 2011

Murray State to Hold Annual "Fan Jam" on Thursday


Murray State Unviersity will host the annual Fan Jam event on October 27 at the CFSB Center.

Here is the announcement from MSU:

Murray State Basketball fans are invited to attend Fan Jam, Thursday, Oct. 27 at 7 p.m. at the CFSB Center. Doors open at 6 p.m.

An annual event, Fan Jam provides fans of all ages a first look at the Racer men's and women's basketball teams.

Admission to Fan Jam is included as part of the season ticket package. Other fans can pick up a free ticket at the CFSB Center ticket office during normal business hours until 5 p.m. of the day of the event. Admission at the door is $5 for the general public and free for Murray State students with a valid student ID.

New for this year are the Racers basketball shootout and a slam dunk contest. Fans will also have the chance to win prizes and participate in various promotions with the teams. Local businesses will be on hand providing give-aways and one lucky student will walk away with a fully-loaded laptop sponsored by Bluegrass Computers of Murray.

MSU's Spirit Groups, the Racer Band, and Dunker will perform and fans can purchase season tickets during the evening.

In the days leading up to Fan Jam, fans are encouraged to use the hashtag #MSUfanjam on Twitter and change their profile pictures on Facebook to the Fan Jam logo found on the Murray State athletics Facebook page.

An area will be available for students to join the new and improved Stampede, the official student cheering section, and to sign up for the second annual BB&T presents: Racers Got Talent. Stampede membership is $15 and students and join via cash or check that night. The goal for Fan Jam is to pack the lower bowl seating, so bring a friend or two.

Complete Release

Kentucky State Picked Seventh in SIAC Coaches' Poll


Kentucky State University was picked seventh in the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference preseason coaches' poll for 2011-12.

Senior forward Kevin Smith was named to the preseason all-SIAC second team.

2011-2012 SIAC Men’s Basketball Predicted Order of Finish

1. Benedict
2. Stillman
3. Tuskegee
4. Clark Atlanta
5. Morehouse
6. Claflin
7. Kentucky State
8. Paine
9. Lemoyne-Owen
10. Albany State
11. Miles
12. Fort Valley State
13. Lane

2011-2012 SIAC Men’s Basketball Preseason All-Conference Team

First Team

Marcus Goode Benedict 6’10 JR C Chapin, SC
Xavier Collier Benedict 5’11 JR G Augusta, GA
Daniyal Faquir Morehouse 6’2 JR G Pasadena, CA
Lee Riley Stillman 6’0 SR G Mobile, AL
Mario Jordan Paine 5’11 JR G Sandersville, GA

Second Team

Tony Baker Paine 6’4 SR G Orange Park, FL
Brandon Davey Fort Valley State 6’6 SO F Warner Robins, GA
Jonathan Tassin Morehouse 6’7 SR G Pontiac, MI
Kevin Smith Kentucky State 6’4 SR F Detroit, MI
Royce Hamilton Clark Atlanta 6’6 SR F Greensboro, MS

SIAC Release

Union College Head Coach Sean Gillespie Fulfills Dream


Union College head coach Sean Gillespie carried out a dream this summer as he enlisted in Army National Guard basic training.

Here is more from UC:

BARBOURVILLE, Ky. - The summer months are usually a slow time of the season for a college basketball coach. It's a time to reflect, recruit, and rest up in the ever ending preparation one goes through in the building of a successful program.

Union head men's basketball coach Sean Gillespie, however, didn't do any of that this past summer. In fact, he found himself away from campus, his team, and most importantly his family, in fighting for a bigger cause: his country.

Earlier this year, Gillespie, 42, enlisted in Army National Guard basic training, fulfilling a dream he envisioned for many years.

The Call to Serve

Gillespie always had an idea he would someday volunteer his services to protect our country. Members of Gillespie's family served in the military (service in three Wars), including his father who was enlisted for 22 years. Gillespie also described himself as an "Army Brat", but, chose a different career path after college in coaching.

However, it was one event that rocked the foundation of our country that pushed Gillespie into service.

"The point for me was 9/11," said Gillespie. "I was 32 at the time, and that point, I felt a little patriotic and wanted to serve. So, really from 9/11, until now, the last 10 years, I've been involved in it, while trying to climb the career ladder."

That career path took Gillespie from Turkey, to Sterling College in Kansas, to here at Union in 2009. When he arrived in southeastern Kentucky, he finally acted on a promise he made to himself back on that dark day in 2001 and enlisted in the National Guard.

He needed permission from one important person first though.

"Over these last 10 years, my wife and I have had some deep discussions about it," he said. "So, finally in last October, I was doing some research online, and I learned that 42 was the age cutoff. So, from that point on, I told myself if I want to do this.

"I wasn't going to look back when I'm 45, 50, 55, and have any regrets about not doing it. At that point, I decided that I needed to make this happen."

Complete Article

Photo: Union College

DeMarcus Cousins in Action Against St. Catharine College

Here is former University of Kentucky star DeMarcus Cousins in action recently against St. Catharine College:

Friday, October 21, 2011

Kenneth Faried Unleashes the Manimal on St. Catharine

Here is former Morehead State University star Kenneth "Manimal" Faried going nuts on St. Catharine College in last night's exhibition game (keep in mind, all plays were in ONE game):

Wayne Blackshear Cleared to Play at Louisville


University of Louisville freshman Wayne Blackshear has reportedly been cleared by the NCAA to play during the 2011-12 season.

Insidetheville.com reported it first on Twitter:

ITVHughes Trusted source tells InsideTheVille.com Wayne Blackshear has been cleared to play for UofL.

UKAthletics.com Gets a New and Improved Look


The University of Kentucky has announced a new and improved version of UKathletics.com.

Here is more about the new look from UK:

LEXINGTON, Ky. -- One of the top collegiate websites in the nation, UKathletics.com has undergone a redesign, launched on Tuesday, Oct. 18, it was announced by UK assistant director of media relations Pete Camagna and UK senior associate director of athletics DeWayne Peevy.

The redesign is focused on highlighting some of the unique features available on UKathletics.com, including its ground-breaking, in-house blog Cat Scratches, headed by UK assistant director of media relations Guy Ramsey. In addition, the redesign will allow fans to better navigate to some of the more exciting UKathletics.com products, including video, photo galleries, social media and the innovative UK Athletics Interactive website.

"We are excited about the new UKathletics.com," Peevy said. "In an increasingly modern age, it is important for school websites to remain the first destination for fans and the new redesign of the site will create a more user-friendly website for our dedicated fan base. We certainly appreciate IMG and CBS College Sports, in addition to our talented staff - headed by Pete Camagna and creative director Kim Troxall - in helping get the new site off and running."

In February of 2009, Peevy and UKathletics.com unveiled a ground-breaking new in-house blog. The mission of the blog was to create an in-depth and behind-the-scenes look into UK Athletics, giving fans an unprecedented view into one of the top athletics programs in collegiate sports. With the increasing popularity of the blog and the new site design, the blog will feature a more prominent place on UKathletics.com.

In addition, the site redesign will feature more of UK's innovative UK Athletics Interactive site. The interactive site is a part of UKathletics.com, but features through views into each of UK's 22 sports, geared towards fans and recruits with the help of UK's dynamic publications team. With the increasing popularity of social media and UK's status as some of the most followed social media sites in collegiate athletics, the new redesign will feature a more prominent social media role.

The site redesign is UK's first since the 2008-09 athletics season.

Footage of Eric Bledsoe and Rod Grizzard Hooping

Former UK star Eric Bledsoe has been playing plenty of basketball during the NBA lockout. Recently he played some pickup games with former Alabama star Rod Grizzard and some others.

Fast Forward Footage was there with a camera:

Recap of Morehead State's Hysteria Event

Here is a video recap of Morehead State University's "Morehead Hysteria" event:



Rondo Didn't Know Kenneth Faried "Could Jump Like That"



Former University of Kentucky star Rajon Rondo talked to GQ about his insane "blind" alley-oop pass to Kenneth Faried during a recent exhibition game.

Rondo said he had no idea Faried could jump like that, but the former Morehead State big man told him to throw it up...so he did.

Here is an excerpt:

GQ: Tell me about how the play developed. Have you been surprised by how much attention it's gotten?

... I was just playing. I didn't even know (Faried) could jump like that. But the first couple games he was doing a couple of windmills....He told me throw it up, throw that lob. I was trying something that time. I had a feel for it. He put it up and I threw it.

GQ: Do you think plays like that make everyone a little sick as they wait for the NBA to return?

People miss it. People want to see the action. I know the fan's perspective. But you won't see that play in an NBA game.

Complete Interview

Northern Kentucky Lands Two 2012 Commitments


Northern Kentucky University has picked up commitments from twin brothers Jacob and Justin Rossi.

The Rossi brothers, both 6-8 forwards, are from Franklin High School.

CincyPrepsHoopsReport describes the brothers as:

Jacob, more of a SF, should play a valuable role on the wing from the get-go at NKU as his versatility for his size makes him a difficult matchup. A very good shooter who can pass, put it on the floor, and is an above average athlete, Jacob has all the tools that Division I college coaches look for.

Justin has the same size and athleticism as his brother but plays more of a down low game, where he really thrives as a turnaround jump shooter off the block. A high motor player, Justin will also have an opportunity to earn playing time for the Norse.


Other programs interested in the duo were Bellarmine, Lincoln Memorial, West Liberty, Manhattan and St. Francis (PA).

St. Catharine College Highlights vs. Big Blue All-Stars

Here are some St. Catharine College highlights from last night's game against the Big Blue All-Stars:

Big Blue All-Stars Take Care of St. Catharine College


Big Blue All-Stars 126
St. Catharine College 116

Exhibition Final from Lebanon, Kentucky


The Big Blue All-Stars started the game strong and never looked back in Thursday night's 126-116 victory over St. Catharine College.

The All-Stars ran out to a 58-33 lead in the first half before the Patriots closed the half on an 8-2 run. The lead hovered around 20 for most of the second half before the exhibition game transitioned into a defenseless dunk fest.

I will post stats when (if) they become available.

For now, here are a few notes:

- The Big Blue All-Stars brought their "A" games to this one; they had a high level of intensity from the tip.

- St. Catharine College is a very talented Mid-South Conference team; they have the talent to compete for the MSC title and beyond. I was very impressed by newcomers Stefan Pope and DeShawn Mitchell. Of course, Kashiff Carr returns and is one of the top players in the MSC. Brandon Johnson shot the ball well and Fateen Belfield is a solid post player.

- Jeff Sheppard took the mic and gave some love to former Kentucky star Anthony Epps, who was in the crowd.

- Kenneth Faried is a monster. He truly is a Manimal. There were no official stats, but I have to think Faried had a triple-double - heck, he blocked 4 shots on one SCC possession.

- The crowd was fantastic at Marion County High School; I didn't see an empty seat in the arena.

- In the picture, DeMarcus Cousins made a new friend.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Kenneth Faried With a Buzzer-Beating Blocked Shot

There are buzzer-beaters and then there is this from former Morehead State University star Kenneth Faried:

Kentucky vs. Louisville Documentary in the Works

Adam Lefkoe at WHAS is planning a documentary about the Kentucky vs. Louisville rivalry.

The documentary will be appropriately titled “The Rivalry."

Here are some preview trailers:



Remy Abell Talks About First Experience at Indiana


Former Louisville Eastern star Remy Abell is now a freshman at Indiana University. He was interviewed recently following the Hoosier Hysteria event.

Here is an excerpt from JournalGazette.net:

Abell got a glimpse of his new surroundings Saturday at Hoosier Hysteria.

“I think everybody had fun,” he said after the event. “I definitely had fun. This is my first time being in it, I hadn’t even watched one. It was great for me, and I feel like the fans and everybody enjoyed it.”

Abell is one of four newcomers on this year’s roster, along with Cody Zeller, Austin Etherington and Raphael Smith (who joined the team for practice during the spring semester).

Abell competed against Zeller and Etherington during the Indiana-Kentucky All-Star Classic in June and came away impressed.

“They both can do pretty good things,” Abell said before the start of the school year. “You see they showed that in the Kentucky vs. Indiana, that’s why we got beat twice.”


Freshman from Kentucky taking best shot with IU

Kentucky, Louisville to Appear in ESPN 3D Games This Season


At least one University of Kentucky game and likely several University of Louisville games will be part of the ESPN 3D college basketball scheduled in 2011-12.

Kentucky's ESPN GameDay contest at Vanderbilt on February 11 will appear in 3D.

For Louisville, the entire Big East Conference Tournament will be available in 3D.

The ESPN 3D college basketball schedule follows (schedule subject to change; additional games may be added):

Quicken Loans Carrier Classic

Date Time (ET) Game
Fri, Nov. 11 7 p.m. Michigan State vs. North Carolina

Old Spice Classic Nov. 24, 25, & 27

The Old Spice Classic tournament, held at the HP Field House at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex near Orlando, Fla., will feature Arizona State, Dayton, DePaul, Fairfield, Indiana State, Minnesota, Texas Tech and Wake Forest.

Date Time (ET) Game
Thurs, Nov 24 12 p.m. Texas Tech vs. Indiana State
2:30 p.m. Minnesota vs. DePaul
7 p.m. Dayton vs. Wake Forest
9: 30 p.m. Arizona state vs. Fairfield
Fri, Nov. 25 Noon Game 5
2:30 p.m. Game 6
5 p.m. Game 7
7:30 p.m. Game 8
Sun, Nov. 27 11:30 a.m. Game 9
2 p.m. Game 10
4:30 p.m. Game 11
7 p.m. Game 12 (Championship)

Jimmy V Classic Presented by Corona Extra Dec. 6

The men’s doubleheader, held at New York City’s famed Madison Square Garden for the ninth consecutive year, will feature Missouri vs. Villanova at 7 p.m. and Washington vs. Marquette at 9:30 p.m.

Date Time (ET) Game
Tues, Dec. 6 7 p.m. Missouri vs. Villanova
9:30 p.m. Washington vs. Marquette

Additional 2012 Games

Date Time (ET) Game
Wed, Feb. 1 9 p.m. Oklahoma at Kansas
Sat, Feb. 4 10 a.m. College GameDay, Mizzou Arena, Columbia
9 p.m. Kansas at Missouri
Wed, Feb. 8 9 p.m. Duke at North Carolina
Sat, Feb. 11 10 a.m. College GameDay, Memorial Gym, Nashville
9 p.m. Kentucky at Vanderbilt

Mon, Feb. 13 7 p.m. Women’s College Basketball: Kentucky at Tennessee
Sat, Feb. 18 10 a.m. College GameDay; Crisler Arena, Ann Arbor
9 p.m. Ohio State at Michigan
Sat, Feb. 25 10 a.m. College GameDay; Gampel Pavilion, Storrs
9 p.m. Syracuse at Connecticut
Wed, Feb. 29 7 p.m. Maryland at North Carolina
Sat, Mar. 3 7 p.m. North Carolina at Duke

2012 BIG EAST Championship Presented by American Eagle Outfitters

Date Time (ET) Game
Tues, Mar. 6
12 p.m. First Round – TBD
2:30 p.m.
7 p.m.
9:30 p.m.
Wed, Mar. 7
12 p.m. Second Round – TBD
2:30 p.m.
7 p.m.
9:30 p.m.
Thurs, Mar. 8
12 p.m. Quarterfinals – TBD
2:30 p.m.
7 p.m.
9:30 p.m.
Fri, Mar. 9
7 p.m. Semifinals - TBD
9:30 p.m.
Sat, Mar. 10
9 p.m. Championship - TBD

Complete Release

Kentucky is No. 2 in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll


The University of Kentucky is No. 2 nationally in the newly released preseason ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll for 2011-12.

The Wildcats are behind top-ranked North Carolina, who received 30 of the 31 first place votes.

Ohio State, Connecticut and Syracuse round out the top 5.

The Louisville Cardinals are No. 8 overall in the poll.

ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll

RK TEAM RECORD PTS
1 North Carolina (30) 0-0 774
2 Kentucky (1) 0-0 721
3 Ohio State 0-0 702
4 Connecticut 0-0 655
5 Syracuse 0-0 649
6 Duke 0-0 635
7 Vanderbilt 0-0 567
8 Louisville 0-0 514
9 Memphis 0-0 482
10 Florida 0-0 474 11 Pittsburgh 0-0 471 12 Baylor 0-0 358 13 Kansas 0-0 331 14 Wisconsin 0-0 313 15 Xavier 0-0 277 16 Arizona 0-0 269 17 Alabama 0-0 194 18 Michigan 0-0 187 19 Texas A&M 0-0 161 20 UCLA 0-0 147 21 Marquette 0-0 145 22 Cincinnati 0-0 141 23 Gonzaga 0-0 125 24 California 0-0 111 25 Missouri 0-0 110

Others receiving votes: Florida State 108, Texas 107, Michigan State 73, Temple 59, Washington 29, Butler 25, New Mexico 22, Creighton 19, Villanova 18, Purdue 17, UNLV 16, West Virginia 13, George Mason 12, Mississippi State 11, St. John's 11, Saint Mary's 5, Virginia 5, Virginia Commonwealth 4, Drexel 2, Kansas State 2, Long Beach State 2, Notre Dame 1, Brigham Young 1

Source: Pair of Canadian Transfers Ruled Eligible at East Ridge

According to a source, the KHSAA has ruled a pair of Canadian transfers eligible for varsity competition at East Ridge High School.

The transfers, who are both in the 2014 recruiting class, are Raynold (Ray) Kasongo and Tony Wolter.

Kasongo is a 6-8, 230-pound small forward. Wolter is a 6-1 point guard.

The site NorthPoleHoops.com ranks Kasongo No. 3 and Wolter No. 13 overall in their 2014 rankings for Canadian players.

John Wall Plans to Enter NBA Dunk Contest Soon


Former University of Kentucky star John Wall said in an interview with Iamagm.com that he plans to enter the NBA slam dunk contest soon.

Wall also said he makes 2,000 jump shots a day in an effort to improve his outside shooting.

Here is an excerpt of the interview:

Question (Audience): So you’ve been working on your jumper. Do you try to hit a certain amount everyday?

John Wall: I have to make 2000 a day.

Question (IamaGM.com): I’ve seen in a lot of the pickup and charity games such as Chris Paul’s that you’ve put up some crazy dunks. Have you considered entering the dunk contest?

John Wall: Yea I’m thinking about it, maybe this year or next year I’ll probably enter the dunk contest.

Question (IamaGM.com): Since there’s a lot going on with the lockout have you ever considered going overseas?

John Wall: No not right now, I think if it starts pushing a lil bit longer, you know they did have that long meeting for 15 hours yesterday so if they don’t get nothing done then probably a month or so I’ll probably start considering over there cause it looks like we won’t have a season


Exclusive: John Wall makes 2,000 jump shots a day, planning on entering the Dunk

Wall also admitted on Wednesday that he is very frustrated about the NBA lockout and wondered out loud if commissioner David Stern is trying to "take advantage" of the players.

Here are Wall's comments:

"I think he's trying to take advantage of us," Wall said of Stern, who's representing the league and owners in the NBA lockout. "I think we're doing a great job of not biting [and doing] what he wants us to do."

John Wall unhappy with David Stern

2012 Guard Quinten Hunter to Visit Tennessee Tech


According to INBRecruits on Twitter, Tennessee Tech watched guard Quinten Hunter of Richmond (Ind.) High School last night.

Hunter is planning to visit Tech on November 5.

Here is the report:

INBRecruits 6'0 G Quinten Hunter of Richmond HS (2012) was watched by Indiana St & Tennessee Tech last night. He will visit Tennessee Tech November 5-6

Three UK Freshmen are Candidates for Wayman Tisdale Award


University of Kentucky freshmen Anthony Davis, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Marquis Teague are among 12 players announced as preseason candidates for the Wayman Tisdale Award, honoring the nation's top freshman in college basketball.

Here is a release from UK:

LEXINGTON, KY – UK freshmen Anthony Davis, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Marquis Teague are among 12 players announced Thursday by the U.S. Basketball Writers Association (USBWA) as preseason candidates for the Wayman Tisdale Award, honoring the nation's top freshman for the 2011-12 college basketball season.

The three freshmen were part of the top-ranked recruiting class in the country and were three of the five finalists for the Naismith Award for the national high school player of the year. Together they make up a quarter of the preseason watch list.

Others named on the list are Bradley Beal, Florida; Chane Behanan, Louisville; Khem Birch, Pittsburgh; Andre Drummond, Connecticut; Le'Bryan Nash, Oklahoma State; Austin Rivers, Duke; Adonis Thomas, Memphis; Josiah Turner, Arizona; and Cody Zeller, Indiana.

The USBWA has chosen a national freshman of the year since the 1988-89 season when LSU's Chris Jackson was the recipient. This is the first year it is named for the late Wayman Tisdale who was a three-time USBWA All-American at the University of Oklahoma.

The Wildcats will be in action in the Blue-White scrimmage on Wed., Oct. 26 at Rupp Arena. Tickets for the scrimmage are still available. The cost of the tickets will be $10 and all seating is reserved and no general admission eRUPPtion Zone tickets will be available for this contest. They can be purchased in the same manner as the first three games along with calling the Rupp Arena Box Office (859.233.3535).

Murray State Players Worried About Former Coach Billy Kennedy

Members of the Murray State University basketball team are concerned about the health of their former head coach, Billy Kennedy.

Kennedy has taken a leave at Texas A&M while he deals with some health issues. WPSDLocal6.com has the latest:


Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Busy Couple of Days for University of Pikeville Players, Coaches


It's going to be a busy couple of days for University of Pikeville players and coaches.

On Thursday, the team will be kicking off their annual "Reading With the Bears" program at Pikeville Elementary School.

Also on Thursday, head coach Kelly Wells will be speaking on behalf of the Pikeville Health Department on tobacco awareness at the Pikeville YMCA.

On Saturday, Wells will conduct a coaching seminar at Red Lake High School in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

UPIKE assistant coaches and players will be conducting a free youth basketball clinic at Pikeville YMCA on Saturday. The clinic will run from Noon to 2:00 p.m ET.

Rajon Rondo, Other NBA Stars Planning Exhibition Tour


Former Kentucky star Rajon Rondo and some other top NBA stars are reportedly planning a two-week, four-continent basketball exhibition tour.

Here is more from ESPN.com:

While the final details are still being worked out, more than a dozen of the league's best players are working to join forces on what would be a two-week, six-game, four-continent blockbuster tour, sources said.

In a trip that could resemble Team USA's takeover of the world stage at the 2008 Beijing Games, Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Derrick Rose, Carmelo Anthony, Chris Paul, Amare Stoudemire, Chris Bosh, Rajon Rondo, Blake Griffin, Russell Westbrook, Carlos Boozer, Paul Pierce and Kevin Love are among the players expected to participate. Kevin Durant and Kevin Garnett, among a few others, are also contemplating joining the tour.

Tyson Chandler also has agreed to participate in the tour, a source close to Chandler told ESPN The Magazine's Ric Bucher.


Sources: NBA stars plan exhibition tour

Louisville Picked to Finish Third in Big East Conference


The Louisville Cardinals were picked third in the 2011-12 Big East Conference Preseason Coaches' Poll that was released earlier today.

Louisville is picked behind co-favorites Connecticut and Syracuse.

Here is more from the conference:

NEW YORK -- Connecticut and Syracuse are the co-favorites to win the 2011-12 BIG EAST men’s basketball regular-season crown in the BIG EAST Preseason Coaches’ Poll. The Huskies, who won the 2011 NCAA national championship, received seven first-place votes and a total of 209 points.

The Orange, who finished last season with a 27-8 record, collected five first-place votes. It is the third tie for first place in the history of the BIG EAST with the last coming in 2007-08. The league’s head coaches do not place their own teams on their ballots.

The Huskies, coached by Jim Calhoun, welcome back three starters, including sophomore guard Jeremy Lamb, a 2011-12 Preseason All-BIG EAST First Team pick, and junior forward Alex Oriakhi, a Preseason All-BIG EAST Second Team selection. Freshman forward Andre Drummond was named BIG EAST Preseason Rookie of the Year.

The strength of the Orange in 2011-12 starts with senior forward Kris Joseph, a member of the Preseason All-BIG EAST First Team. Junior guard Scoop Jardine who led the BIG EAST in assists with a 6.1 average in league play, is a Preseason All-BIG EAST Second Team pick.

Louisville finished third in the poll with 201 points and three first-place votes. The Cardinals return 11 lettermen including three starters from last year’s team that finished 25-10 overall and 12-6 in the BIG EAST. Junior guard Peyton Siva is a top all-around contributor to the UofL success. Last season, he averaged 9.9 points, was fourth in the league in assists with a 5.2 average and second in steals at 2.0. He is a Preseason All-BIG EAST Second Team selection.

Complete Release

2011-12 Preseason Coaches’ Poll

1. Connecticut (7) 209
1. Syracuse (5) 209
3. Louisville (3) 201
4. Pittsburgh (1) 188
5. Cincinnati 169
6. Marquette 155
7. West Virginia 132
8. Villanova 127
9. Notre Dame 114
10. Georgetown 104
11. Rutgers 75
12. St. John’s 71
13. Seton Hall 56
14. USF 43
15. Providence 40
16. DePaul 27

First-place votes in parentheses

2011-12 BIG EAST Preseason Player of the Year
Ashton Gibbs, Pittsburgh

2011-12 BIG EAST Preseason Rookie of the Year
Andre Drummond, Connecticut

2011-12 Preseason All-BIG EAST First Team
Ashton Gibbs, Pittsburgh (Player of the Year), G, Sr., 6-2, 190, Scotch Plains, N.J.
Jeremy Lamb, Connecticut, G/F, So., 6-5, 185, Norcross, Ga.
Darius Johnson-Odom, Marquette, G, Sr., 6-2, 215, Raleigh, N.C.
Tim Abromaitis, Notre Dame, F, Gr., 6-8, 235, Unionville, Conn.
Kris Joseph, Syracuse, F, Sr., 6-7, 210, Montreal, Quebec
Kevin Jones, West Virginia, F, Sr., 6-8, 260, Mount Vernon, N.Y.

2011-12 Preseason All-BIG EAST Second Team
Yancy Gates, Cincinnati, F, Sr., 6-9, 260, Cincinnati, Ohio
Alex Oriakhi Connecticut, F/C, Jr., 6-9, 240, Lowell, Mass.
Peyton Siva, Louisville, G, Jr., 5-11, 180, Seattle, Wash.
Scoop Jardine, Syracuse, G, Sr., 6-2 190, Philadelphia, Pa.
Maalik Wayns, Villanova, G, Jr., 6-2, 200, Philadelphia, Pa.

2011-12 Preseason All-BIG EAST Honorable Mention
Andre Drummond, Connecticut, C, Fr., 6-11, 275, Middletown, Conn.
Shabazz Napier, Connecticut, G, So. 6-0, 170, Roxbury, Mass.
Cleveland Melvin, DePaul, F, So., 6-8, 208, Baltimore, Md.
Jae Crowder, Marquette, F, Sr., 6-6, 235, Villa Rica, Ga.
Augustus Gilchrist, USF, F/C, Sr., 6-10, 245, Clinton, Md.

Kentucky Basketball Tickets Available for Early Games


Tickets are still available for Kentucky's Blue-White scrimmage and first three home games.

Here is the release from UK:

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Tickets for the first three home games for the UK men’s basketball team including both exhibitions are currently available to the general public. The tickets made available are from the unsold student ticket allotment.

Tickets for the Transylvania (Nov. 2), Morehouse (Nov. 7) and Marist (Nov. 11) games are available for purchase by visiting the UK Ticket Office between the hours of 9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. ET or by calling 1.800.928.2287. Fans can also obtain tickets by going online to UKathletics.com and Ticketmaster.com or Ticketmaster outlets statewide.

Tickets for the Blue-White scrimmage at Rupp Arena on Oct. 26 are also still available. The cost of the tickets will be $10 and all seating is reserved and no general admission eRUPPtion Zone tickets will be available for this contest. They can be purchased in the same manner as the first three games along with calling the Rupp Arena Box Office (859.233.3535).

What Did Rick Pitino Say at Big East Media Day?


Rick Pitino made comments during Big East Media Day on Wednesday that are surely going to be scrutinized.

I understand Pitino's passion to defend the Big East Conference, but he certainly should have picked a better way to speak his mind:

"My problem is not them leaving," he said. "My problem is you did it in 48 hours. Don't run away with a girl after one date when you've been dating someone else for three or four years. You've been dating this woman for 30 years, show a little respect."

I have tons of respect for Coach Pitino but his comments in the aftermath of his recent cheating scandal (on his wife that he was married to for almost 30 years) are ridiculous.

Rick Pitino...come on man.

Teague, Siva on List of Top 30 Point Guards


Kentucky's Marquis Teague and Louisville's Peyton Siva are on CBSSports.com's list of the nation's top 30 point guards.

Teague is no. 10 on the list while Siva comes in at no. 15.

The top five are Jordan Taylor (Wisconsin), Tu Holloway (Xavier), Kendall Marshall (UNC), Ashton Gibbs (Pitt) and Aaron Craft (Ohio State).

Here are excerpts about Teague and Siva:

10. Marquis Teague (Kentucky)
Thirty percent of the top 10 is comprised of freshman, which shouldn't shock you. The fact a Kentucky point guard cracks the top 10 is equally unsurprising. He's one of the more pure point guards Calipari has had in the past 10 years, and his end-to-end speed is wobbling.

15. Peyton Siva (Louisville)
Siva put up 5.2 assists per game, but he's also an adept defender. He'll go for the swipe frequently (which should be no surprise, given his coach), and rounds out a list of Big East point guards on this list that should help make the league, again, the toughest in the country.

Complete Article

Calipari to Speak at KCA Annual Meeting in Lexington


University of Kentucky head coach John Calipari will be the keynote speaker for this year's Kentucky Coal Association (KCA) Annual Meeting.

Calipari will speak during lunch at the Marriott Griffin Gate in Lexington on Friday.

The event is invitation only.

Source: Release from Kentucky Coal Association (KCA)

Louisville Showing Interest in 2013 Star Stephen Domingo


According to Jody Demling, Louisville is showing interest in 2013 star Stephen Domingo from San Francisco St. Ignatius College Prep.

Domingo is a 6-6 small forward. He ranks no. 31 overall on the Rivals.com list for 2013.

Here is an excerpt of Demling's article:

San Francisco St. Ignatius College Prep wing Stephen Domingo said he has 25 scholarship offers and noted Louisville has jumped into the mix.

"Coach Jones has been to my school and I was trying to take a visit there (when he was in town for the John Lucas camp) but it didn’t work out," Domingo said. "I want to see the campus, so I will be out here again.


Louisville has interest in West Coast wing

Photo: Rivals.com

KWC, Others to Form Great Midwest Athletic Conference


The new conference that Kentucky Wesleyan College plans to form with five other schools will be called the Great Midwest Athletic Conference (G-MAC).

The G-MAC will initially include KWC, Cedarville University, Central State University, Notre Dame College, Urbana University and Ursuline College.

Here is a release from KWC:

Presidents of the newly formed athletic conference, featuring six NCAA Division II colleges and universities from Kentucky and Ohio, have announced the conference will be named the Great Midwest Athletic Conference (G-MAC).

The six member institutions include: Cedarville University (Cedarville, Ohio); Central State University (Wilberforce, Ohio); Kentucky Wesleyan College (Owensboro, Kentucky); Notre Dame College (South Euclid, Ohio); Urbana University (Urbana, Ohio); and Ursuline College (Pepper Pike, Ohio).

The new conference will begin competition in the fall of 2013, pending approval from the NCAA. The G-MAC would become the NCAA's 24th Division II conference.

Currently Kentucky Wesleyan holds membership in the Great Lakes Valley Conference, while the five Ohio schools are Division II independents.

The Presidents issued a joint statement saying, “The Great Midwest Athletic Conference reflects the membership of similar institutions with parallel academic and athletic philosophies and resources. The geographical reference in the Conference's name represents the connection to NCAA Division II's Midwest region.”

The league administrators have been working diligently to create the structure needed to form a conference that will be desirable to other colleges and universities with similar philosophies. Expansion beyond the original six will be a priority moving forward.

The CEO's added, “We believe the G-MAC will become the model NCAA Division II conference with our focus on the whole student-athlete experience – including academics, socializing, and being able to compete athletically with success.”

Big Blue All-Stars Overwhelm Kentucky Christian University


Big Blue All-Stars 147
Kentucky Christian 110

Exhibition Final from Morehead, Kentucky


The Big Blue All-Stars simply overwhelmed Kentucky Christian University on Tuesday night as they rolled 147-110 at Morehead State's Johnson Arena.

The All-Stars dominated early and often, rolling to a 79-42 halftime lead.

Former University of Kentucky star DeMarcus Cousins led the way with 41 points. Morehead State alum Kenneth Faried, playing in front of the hometown crowd, added 30. Shelvin Mack chipped in 22 for the All-Stars.

Former Morehead State sharp-shooter Maze Stallworth, who was added to the roster for this game, contributed 10 points.

Faried, who just finished up a remarkable college career at MSU, received several loud pops during the game. At one point, he grabbed a mic and did live play-by-play during the game.

The All-Stars return to action Thursday night against St. Catharine College. That game will be played at Marion County High School.

Photo and Recap: Sarah Beckelheimer, AllKyHoops.com



Western Ontario Defeats Transylvania in Canada


Western Ontario 72
Transylvania 63

Exhibition Final from Canada


Here is a recap from Transy:

LONDON, Ont. - Transylvania capped its preseason swing through Canada Monday with a 72-63 loss to Western Ontario, giving the Pioneers a 1-2 mark for the trip.

Transy was led in scoring by Trey Buettel, who had 12 points in just 19 minutes of play. Matthew Clevenger added nine points while freshman Jimi Starks was four-of-six from the field for eight points.

Gavin Dunagan and Michael Stone led in rebounding with five each and Jordan Gilbert led with three assists.

Transy led 34-32 after the first two quarters, but Western pulled away with a 28-18 surge in the fourth quarter. Transy shot 40 percent for the game compared to 45 percent for the home team. Western was 14 of 22 from the free throw line compared to seven of nine for the Pioneers.

Transy is back in action on Nov. 2 when the Pioneers take on Kentucky in an exhibition game at Rupp Arena. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. and tickets are available from Ticket Master.

Photo: Transylvania University

John Calipari Gives Thoughts on Early Practices


University of Kentucky head coach John Calipari has written down some thoughts following his first week of official practices with the 2011-12 version of the Wildcats.

Here are Coach Cal's thoughts:

1. These kids bring it – My biggest observation is I have not had to coach effort and intensity for six straight practices. When you’re talking about going Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, back to back, and having six practices along with Big Blue Madness, that’s saying something. As a coach, you don’t ever want to coach effort, enthusiasm and passion. With this team, I don’t have to. They bring it – together. There are no egos on this team.

2. They are their brother’s keeper – They’re listening and focused, and they like each other. I can really tell they enjoy playing with one another. When one of them makes a play, the others are really happy about it. Did you see how happy Anthony Davis was for Michael Kidd-Gilchrist on Twitter when Mike dunked on him over the weekend? That’s what I’m talking about.

3. Coach Hall’s observation – Joe B. Hall walked in today and said we’re way ahead of where we were a year ago. Now, I don’t know exactly what Coach Hall means because we weren’t very good early on a year ago, but we’re way beyond where we were. Remember, we had extra practices last year because of our trip to Canada and we’re ahead of that team.

4. The veterans are changing – Terrence Jones is not even the same player. He’s got a different body, a different skill set, different practice habits and a different attitude. Sound familiar? Josh Harrellson? And he didn’t have to tweet something bad about me to get himself ready. Darius Miller, as long as he stays aggressive, the way he’s playing right now, his leadership and his toughness are beyond where they’ve ever been. Doron Lamb is way beyond his toughness and physical play from last year. His concentration is better. He’s in practice early, which he was never early last year; he was the last one out. Eloy Vargas and Stacey Poole are way better than they were a year ago. Now, they still have a ways to go to fight for minutes, but they’re way better than they were. Jarrod Polson is better. He’s out there balling with these guys. Twany Beckham is going to be fine. He’s learning right now concentrating on how we’re playing and the speed of the practice, not only the up and down speed but how we move from thing to thing, but he’s physically ready to go.

5. They are who we thought they were – The young kids are what we thought. If you said to me, “Are you blown away?” my answer would be no. They’re all what I thought they would be. Michael is a fierce competitor, I’ve got a bulldog point guard in Marquis Teague, Anthony Davis is Spider-man, and Kyle Wiltjer is a skilled, long big guy.

6. How we’ll play – This may be a Dribble Drive team. Instead of using it 30 percent of the time, we may use it 70 percent of the time. They’re reacting quickly and they’ve got a feel for what’s going on. They’re doing pretty good with it.

Complete Article

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Union College Picked to Finish Third in AAC


Union College is picked to finish third in the Appalachian Athletic Conference this season.

The 2011-12 AAC Men's Basketball Coaches' Preseason Poll was released on Tuesday.

Here is the release from the conference:

ASHEVILLE, N.C. - Milligan (Tenn.) and Reinhardt (Ga.) are the favorites to win the conference title, according to the 2011-12 Appalachian Athletic Conference Men's Basketball Coaches' Preseason Preseason Poll released Tuesday.

Milligan and Reinhardt each received 69 total points in the poll with Milligan collecting five first-place votes and Reinhardt two.

The Buffaloes (17-12 overall) won the 2010-11 AAC regular-season championship with a 12-2 league mark but were upset in the tournament semifinals by eventual tournament champion Union (Ky.). Reinhardt (16-15 overall), which ended the regular-season third in the league with a 9-5 mark, lost a hotly-contested battle to Union in the AAC Tournament championship game 68-67.

The Bulldogs (16-16 overall, 7-7 AAC) are projected to finish third in the conference this season, having received 65 points and one first-place vote. Union advanced to the NAIA National Championship Tournament for the first since 1968.

Virginia Intermont came in fourth in the poll with 51 points, while Bluefield (Va.) garnered the remaining first-place vote to land fifth with 45 points. Tennessee Wesleyan is sixth at 40 points, Bryan (Tenn.) seventh at 34, Montreat (N.C.) eighth at 21, and Point (Ga.) ninth at 11.

The 2012 AAC Tournament is set for Feb. 20-27 with the higher seeds hosting each round.

Here is the coaches' poll:

1. Milligan (5) 69
1. Reinhardt (2) 69
3. Union College (1) 65
4. Virginia Intermont 51
5. Bluefield (1) 45
6. Tennessee Wesleyan 40
7. Bryan 34
8. Montreat 21
9. Point 11

Oops...Did Bob Knight Break NCAA Rules?


According to a report from the Indianapolis State, legendary head coach Bob Knight may have violated NCAA rules by allegedly helping his son, Pat, recruit two players from Indianapolis.

Knight, who has loudly (rudely?) called out other NCAA head coaches for working in so-called gray areas, reportedly spoke to both recruits on the phone about playing at Lamar University, where Pat is the head coach.

Here is an excerpt:

The issue? Lamar recruits Jason Smith and Donnell Minton said they talked with Bob Knight on the phone for about five minutes. Minton told the paper that Knight “told me he thought I’d be a good fit for the program and said he hoped he’d see me at Lamar.”

Except … NCAA rules usually prohibit anyone except the coaching staff from recruiting. The school is probing the situation and the NCAA confirmed that telephone calls can only be made by the coaching staff. But there’s little doubt this was a foul-up. From the paper:

“I don’t see any way around this — unless there’s an exception for an icon or legend,” said Dave Ridpath, a former compliance director at Marshall University and now a professor at Ohio University.

“I see no way that Bob Knight can actively recruit for Lamar. All schools deal with this and would love to use high profile folks such as (former NFL quarterback) Chad Pennington at Marshall. But the rule is in place for that very reason — it would be a recruiting advantage.”


Did Bob Knight violate NCAA rules? (Cue schadenfreude)

University of Kentucky fans will likely remember Knight's cheap shots at UK head coach John Calipari.

St. Catharine to Host Patriot Madness on Wednesday


St. Catharine College will host Patriot Madness on Wednesday night in Springfield, Kentucky.

The Patriots, who are a preseason top 10 team in the nation, will have a scrimmage and a dunk contest during the event.

Here is more from SCC:

It is shaping up as an exciting basketball season at St. Catharine College. The Patriot men are ranked ninth nationally in the pre-season poll and the women have a roster laden with talent. But the excitement begins even before the season’s first game as annual Patriot Madness hits Lourdes Hall Wednesday starting at 8:00.

The first 100 fans in attendance will receive a Patriot Madness T-shirt and raffle tickets will be distributed at the door for cash prizes, gift certificates and more. Admission is free to the event and doors open at 7:30.

Lena Bramblett’s women’s team has a special treat in store while J. T. Burton’s Patriot men will have a Purple/Grey scrimmage and a dunk contest.

St. Catharine returns Kashiff Carr, one of the top players in the Mid-South Conference:

More Details on Club MD Big Red vs. Big Blue Alumni Game


I spoke with former University of Kentucky player Josh Carrier tonight and he provided some additional details on the upcoming game that will feature former Western Kentucky University and University of Kentucky basketball stars.

The game is being sponsored by Club MD and is being dubbed Club MC Big Red vs. Big Blue Alumni Game.

The exhibition battle will take place at E.A. Diddle Arena on October 25 at 7:00 p.m.

Tickets can be purchased at wkusports.com, ticketmaster.com and over the phone at 1-800-5BIGRED.

The rosters at this time are as follows:

Big Blue

- Brandon Knight
- Josh Harrellson
- DeAndre Liggins
- Ravi Moss
- Brandon Stockton
- Josh Carrier
- Chuck Hayes is possible, but still tentative

Big Red

- Courtney Lee
- Jeremy Evans
- Ty Rogers
- Anthony Winchester
- Mike Wells
- Matt Maresca
- Derek Robinson
- Darnell Mee

Proceeds from the game will go to the W Club and Sharpshooters Academy.

CBSSports.com Names Top 100 Players for 2011-12


CBSSports.com has listed their picks as the top 100 players in college basketball for 2011-12.

Kentucky's Anthony Davis is in the top 10 at no. 7. Other Wildcats on the list include Terrence Jones, Doron Lamb, Maquis Teague and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist.

Louisville's Peyton Siva is on the list at no. 71.

Top 10:

1. Jared Sullinger (sophomore forward, Ohio State). Sullinger is big and strong and the nation's best player, which is why he's ranked where he's ranked. — Gary Parrish

2. Harrison Barnes (sophomore forward, North Carolina). Barnes finished strong last season and could lead the Tar Heels to a national championship. — G.P.

3. Jordan Taylor (senior guard, Wisconsin). Taylor was mostly unknown outside of the Big Ten this time last year. That's no longer the case. — G.P.

4. Tu Holloway (senior guard, Xavier). Kelvin Sampson's resignation at Indiana was a blessing for Xavier because it led to Holloway becoming a Musketeer. — G.P.

5. Perry Jones (sophomore forward, Baylor). Jones' decision to return to Baylor was a surprise. Him leading the Bears to a Big 12 title won't be. — G.P.

6. Thomas Robinson (junior forward, Kansas). Look for a huge season for the relentless, athletic forward, especially with the departure of the Morris twins. — Jeff Goodman

7. Anthony Davis (freshman forward, Kentucky). Not sure there's anyone more versatile in the nation and that's why many NBA types have him pegged as the top overall pick in 2012. — J.G.

8. John Henson (junior forward, North Carolina). His offensive game is still a work in progress, but he's long and is arguably the most dominant defensive player in the nation. — J.G.

9. John Jenkins (junior guard, Vanderbilt). There's no better pure perimeter shooter in the country, and his game is no longer one-dimensional. — J.G.

10. Austin Rivers (freshman guard, Duke). Doc Rivers' kid can score the basketball. He's strong and can really get to the basket and make plays. — J.G.

Others:

11. Terrence Jones (sophomore forward, Kentucky). What's it tell you about Jones that he was humbled, accepts his faults, is on his way up ... and is still this high on the list? If he can learn to go right with consistency, look OUT. — Matt Norlander

16. Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (freshman forward, Kentucky). Do-it-all freshman could be a steadying influence for star-studded Wildcats. — Jeff Borzello

48. Marquis Teague (freshman guard, Kentucky). A mix of the past two point guards that came through Lexington: Brandon Knight and John Wall. He's a pure point guard who is a blur. — J.G.

69. Doron Lamb (sophomore guard, Kentucky). The freshmen will get most of the attention, but Lamb's shooting will be a key for the Wildcats. — J.B.

71. Peyton Siva (junior guard, Louisville). Has developed into a quality point guard, can also score and has plenty of intangibles. — J.G.

Complete Top 100 List

Gary Parrish of CBSSports.com listed Davis, Teague, Kidd-Gilchrist, Lamb, Jones and Siva on his 50-player ballot for the Naismith Award Early Season Watch List.

My Thoughts: No love for Darius Miller?

Pikeville, Georgetown Share Top Spot in MSC Coaches' Poll


The University of Pikeville and Georgetown College share the top spot in the 2011-12 Mid-South Conference Men's Basketball Preseason Coaches' Poll, which was released today by the conference.

Both teams appeared in the NAIA Division I national semifinals last season, with Pikeville walking away with a national championship.

St. Catharine College is third in the poll, followed by Campbellsville University, University of the Cumberlands and Lindsey Wilson College.

Here is a release from the MSC:

LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- A pair of defending champions lead the way in the 2011-12 Mid-South Conference Men's Basketball Preseason Coaches' Poll released on Tuesday by the conference.

The defending NAIA national champions University of Pikeville and the defending MSC regular season and tournament champions Georgetown College each received 58 voting points from the league coaches. Coaches were not allowed to vote for their own team.

Pikeville received five of the nine first-place votes while Georgetown garnered two first-place nods.

Last season, Georgetown captured the MSC regular season title with a 15-3 conference record. The Tigers went on to win the conference tournament title and reached the NAIA National Tournament's Fab Four.

Pikeville finished in a tie for third in the conference regular season with a 13-5 record and reached the MSC Tournament semifinals. The Bears made the most of their at-large bid into the national tournament with five straight wins over seeded-teams en route to the national title.

St. Catharine College is third in the preseason poll with 53 voting points, including the final two first-place votes.

Campbellsville University is projected to finish fourth with 40 voting points and University of the Cumberlands is fifth in the poll with 38 voting points.

Lindsey Wilson College is sixth in the poll with 32 voting points, followed by UVa.-Wise (18 voting points), Shawnee State University (16) and University of Rio Grande (11).

West Virginia University Tech is not listed in the preseason poll due to not being eligible for the MSC regular season championship during the 2011-12 academic year.

The Mid-South Conference regular season tips-off on November 19 and concludes with the MSC Tournament March 1-4 in Frankfort, Ky.

Place School (First Place Votes) Points

1. Georgetown College (2) 58
1. University of Pikeville (5) 58
3. St. Catharine College (2) 53
4. Campbellsville University 40
5. University of the Cumberlands 38
6. Lindsey Wilson College 32
7. UVa.-Wise 18
8. Shawnee State University 16
9. University of Rio Grande 11

Vanderbilt's Festus Ezeli Suspended for Six Games


Vanderbilt big man Festus Ezeli has been suspended for the first six games of the 2011-12 basketball season for accepting improper benefits from an alumnus.

Here are details from Tennessean.com:

Ezeli, a 6-foot-11 senior, accepted a meal and a hotel room paid for by a Vanderbilt alumnus while on a weekend trip to visit friends this summer, according to a statement released by the university.

Vanderbilt uncovered the incident during an internal compliance review and self-reported the violation to the SEC and NCAA in early August.

The NCAA finalized its ruling on Monday.


NCAA suspends Vanderbilt center Festus Ezeli for first six games

Ezeli will miss several November games, including North Carolina State and either Texas or Oregon State. He will be eligible to return to action on November 28 against Xavier.

Kentucky Trio on List of Top Impact Freshmen


Luke Winn of SportsIllustrated.com has ranked his top 16 "impact freshmen" in college basketball for 2011-12.

He has Kentucky's Marquis Teague, Anthony Davis and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist in the top 8.

Here are some excerpts:

#3 Marquis Teague
PG, Kentucky
John Calipari's run of success over the past four seasons (135 wins and two Final Four trips at UK and Memphis combined) has been powered by his point guards, and the speedy Teague is the latest phenom. He's thought to be an even more promising NBA prospect than was his older brother, Jeff, who starred at Wake Forest and then was drafted 19th overall by the Hawks in 2009.

#4 Anthony Davis
PF/C, Kentucky
Davis is a former guard who had a late growth spurt to 6-foot-10 and emerged as the top-ranked prospect in the Class of 2011 by both Rivals and Scout.com. He should have a major defensive impact -- he can score, too, but the Wildcats have plenty of offensive options -- before becoming a top-three pick in the 2012 NBA Draft.


#8 Michael Kidd-Gilchrist
SF, Kentucky
Perhaps the toughest competitor in the Class of 2011, Kidd-Gilchrist will command minutes in the Wildcats' loaded rotation due to his defense. He'll be a valuable glass-crasher from the wing and raise the team's overall energy level whenever he's in the game -- no matter if he comes off the bench or cracks the starting lineup.

Complete List

Gary Harris Down to 4; Will Not Visit Ohio State


Gary Harris says he has no plans to visit Ohio State and is now down to Indiana, Purdue, Michigan State and Kentucky.

Here is more from Twitter:

BBaptistHoops Gary Harris 2012 tells http://Scout.com he has no plans to visit #Buckeyes. His final 4 are IU, Pur, Ky, Mich St. http://bit.ly/pzhgnR

Here is an excerpt of the article:

Five-star shooting guard Gary Harris continued his official visit tour with a trip to Indiana. The No. 12 ranked prospect in the country is documenting all of his official visits for Scout.com with a journal following each trip. In his own words Harris chronicles his visit, his recruitment, and what is happening next.

Complete Article (Subscription)

Photo: Rivals.com

Jaysean Paige Initially Ruled Ineligible at Perry County Central


Jaysean Paige, who transferred to Perry County Central High School from Jamestown (NY), has initially been ruled ineligible to play basketball at PCC by the KHSAA.

There will be an appeal decision made on November 1.

Here is an excerpt from Buffalosportsdaily.com:

I spoke to both a source and a reporter in the Kentucky area and according to both, former Jamestown basketball star Jaysean Paige has been ruled ineligible to play by the KHSAA after transferring from Jamestown to Perry County Central High School in Hazard, Kentucky this summer.

“Mr. Paige has been ruled ineligible to play at this present time but the initial ruling is going to be appealed,” said the source.

I spoke with Chris Ritchie, a reporter for the Hazard Herald in Kentucky and he confirmed speaking to Perry County School Board Chairman John C. Combs, who was informed of Paige’s ineligibility late last week.

An appeal is scheduled for November 1 and there’s definitely a chance the initial ruling could be overturned.


Jaysean Paige Ruled Ineligible To Play In Kentucky

Monday, October 17, 2011

John Wall Goes Back to School at the University of Kentucky


Former Kentucky point guard John Wall has enrolled in two online classes at UK. Wall is pursuing a degree in business management.

Here are some of Wall's comments from the Washington Post:

“I think the lockout has really given me the opportunity to go back to school … to get closer to my degree. I’m developing, studying and working on my game,” said Wall, who is pursuing a degree in business management. “It’s not too bad. Aint no practice, so I work out in the morning and I’ve got the rest of the day to myself. It’s just video games and homework.”

Wall supports the union in its fight to get a favorable deal in the next collective bargaining agreement and has taken an amplified interest since it will greatly affect his career earning potential. “I think it’s really for the young guys. You’ve got to be the ones that’s ready to stick,” he said. “It’s a whole lot to talk about. A hard cap, an extra two years on the rookie contract. Those are things that a lot of people and fans don’t understand.”


John Wall taking classes at Kentucky during lockout

John Wall to Play in Kevin Durant's Exhibition Game


Former University of Kentucky star John Wall has committed to an exhibition game that is being put together by Oklahoma City star Kevin Durant.

Durant is hosting an exhibition game Sunday at the Cox Convention Center in Oklahoma City.

Wall, LeBron James, Blake Griffin, Chris Paul, Carmelo Anthony, Amar'e Stoudemire, Russell Westbrook, Rudy Gay and Jeff Green have all committed to the game.

It is being billed as the battle for "Mr. Basketball in Oklahoma" between Durant and Griffin.

The Cox Center seats 14,000 and tickets can be purchased through the arena and Ticketmaster.com.

Source

No Love for Kentucky on CBS All-American Teams


CBS has released their picks for 2011-12 preseason All-Americans and no players from Kentucky made the first team cut.

Freshman Anthony Davis is on the second team and sophomore Terrence Jones is on the third team.

The first team is Jordan Taylor, John Jenkins, Harrison Barnes, Thomas Robinson and Jared Sullinger.

Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Davis are on the All-freshman first team. Marquis Teague is on the All-freshman second team.

Here is the complete list:

First Team

Jordan Taylor, Wisconsin
John Jenkins, Vanderbilt
Harrison Barnes, North Carolina
Thomas Robinson, Kansas
Jared Sullinger, Ohio State

Second Team

Kendall Marshall, North Carolina
Tu Holloway, Xavier
Anthony Davis, Kentucky
Perry Jones, Baylor
John Henson, North Carolina

Third Team

Ashton Gibbs, Pittsburgh
Austin Rivers, Duke
Jeremy Lamb, Connecticut
Terrence Jones, Kentucky
Trevor Mbakwe, Minnesota

Complete Article

KWC's Young, McFarland Named Preseason All-American


Kentucky Wesleyan College's Anthony Young and Cardell McFarland were named honorable mention preseason All-Americans by Division II Bulletin.

Here is a release from KWC:

Kentucky Wesleyan's Anthony Young and Cardell McFarland received honorable mention All-America recognition by Division II Bulletin in their preseason basketball publication.

Young, a 6-7 senior forward from Indianapolis, Ind. (Arensal Tech HS), led the Panthers in scoring (19.4), rebounding (8.4) and blocks (16) in 28 games and 26 starts. He was second in free throw shooting (87.8) and third in minutes played (31.1).

The Sporting News last month also chose Young as an All-American.

McFarland, a 5-11 senior guard from Evansville, Ind. (Bosse HS), led KWC in assists (3.9), three-point shooting (41.2%) minutes played (33.5). He finished second in scoring (18.0), steals (21) and blocks (12) in 28 games and 26 starts.

Complete Release

Prohm Says Ivan Aska is Key to the Murray State Season

Murray State head coach Steve Prohm says the key to the Racers season is the play of big man Ivan Aska.

WPSDLocal6.com caught up with Aska and Prohm to discuss the big expectations for 2011-12:


Asbury to Have Men's Basketball Showcase During Homecoming


Asbury University will have its annual Men's Basketbal Showcase on Saturday, October 29 at 2:00 p.m. ET. The showcase will be part of AU's Homecoming weekend.

Here is a schedule:

Thursday, October 27 (SIBLING INVASION)

7:30 p.m. Recital: Lindsey Hanton ’13 & Dylan Schatko ‘13 — AK
9 p.m. Capture the Flag — SC

For more information about the SIBLING INVASION, contact the Admissions Department at (859) 858-3511, ext. 2142.

Friday, October 28

10 a.m. Homecoming Chapel, Sarah Louise Luce ‘72 — HU
11 a.m. Parent & Family Reception — SC
5 p.m. JV Soccer vs. Alumni — SF
7 p.m. Volleyball vs. Mountain State — LU
7:30 p.m. Music Department’s Homecoming Concert — HU
9:00 p.m. Sit-com Premiere: Friends Like You: You Like Me Too Much — SC

Saturday, October 29

8:30 a.m. Parent Advisory Council Meeting
10:30 a.m. Alumni Swimming & Diving Meet — LU
11 a.m. Ensemble Concert — AK
Noon Homecoming Picnic* — LU
12:30 p.m. Women’s Soccer vs. U of Cumberlands — SF
2 p.m. Asbury Men’s Basketball Showcase — LU Alumni Game & Varsity Scrimmage
2:30 p.m. Alumni Baseball Game — BF
3 p.m. Art Alumni Gathering & Portfolio Review — MC 203
4 p.m. Alumni Softball Game — SB
6 p.m. Trustees Third’s Trebuchet Launch — BF
7 p.m. Men’s Soccer vs. Ohio State U- Mansfield -SF Homecoming Court
9:30 p.m. Throwback Party — see campus posters for location

Sunday, October 30

10 a.m. Worship Service, Dr. David Grout ‘80 — HU

Transylvania Splits Games in Canada Over the Weekend


Transylvania University split a pair of exhibition games in Canada over the weekend. The Pioneers defeated Calgary 68-62 on Saturday and lost 76-71 to Windsor on Sunday.

Transy closes out the exhibition tour on Monday against Western Ontario.

Here are game recaps from TU:

Transylvania 68
Calgary 62

Exhibition Final from Canada


Transylvania got 23 points off the bench from Tate Cox Saturday and opened its three-game exhibition swing through Canada with a 68-62 victory over Calgary.

Transy and Calgary played four quarters rather than the usual two 20-minute halves. The Pioneers' 22-11 burst in the second quarter accounted for the margin of victory. Calgary shaved six points off the Transy lead in the final period.

Cox hit seven of 14 shots, including five of nine from long range, to lead all scorers. Barrett Meyer added 12 in a reserve role while Brandon Rash came up with 10 points and eight rebounds. Ethan Spurlin notched eight points and grabbed eight boards.

Transy outshot its hosts, canning 41 percent overall and 51 percent in the first two periods. Calgary connected on 33.8 percent of its attempts. Transy was out-rebounded, 46-38.

Transy will remain in Calgary on Sunday, meeting Windsor at 4 p.m.

Windsor 76
Transylvania 71

Exhibition Final from Canada


Rash led Transy with 20 points and nine rebounds, shooting nine of 16 from the field. He also had three assists. Spurlin had 18 points and seven rebounds.

Transy trailed 27-24 at halftime despite shooting just 27.3 percent from the field. The Pioneers heated up considerably in the second half, canning 19 of 37 attempts for 52 percent.

Barrett Meyer added 13 points to the Transy attack in a reserve role. Tate Cox, who led Transy in scoring in its first game against Calgary, was held to five points, but he added seven assists.

The Pioneers were hurt by turnovers in a game that saw seven ties and 14 lead changes. Transy made 15 turnovers that the Lancers turned into 22 points.

Transy completes its fall break Canadian trip on Monday, facing Western Ontario at 7 p.m. The Pioneers will play their final exhibition game of the season on Nov. 2 against Kentucky at Rupp Arena.

Rajon Rondo is Healthy and Hopeful for an NBA Season


Former University of Kentucky star Rajon Rondo says he's back to 100% following a gruesome elbow injury in last season's NBA Playoffs.

Rondo says he's healthy and he hopes there is an NBA season.

Here is an excerpt from Boston.com:

“I hope there’s a season,” he said. “I’m looking forward to it and everyone around the league is, even the fans. It’s just an extended vacation as far as trying to continue to train and get better. It’s more time for me to work on my game, and that’s how I try to face it in the next couple of weeks or months or whatever we have.

“Right now my focus is to play with the Celtics.”

Rondo made highlight reels with an acrobatic alley-oop pass to Denver rookie Kenneth Faried in a Kentucky all-star game this week and made his first organized basketball appearance last weekend at the South Florida All-Star Classic, which he was promptly booed by the Heat faithful at Florida International University.

“I had a fun time at the game, a lot of guys playing together,” he said. “It’s good competition, that’s what you look for in this type of time of the year. The elbow is fine. I have been playing in a lot of games and it hasn’t given me any problems yet.”


Rondo says he's 100 percent healthy

Rondo has certainly looked healthy in exhibition games this summer:

DeMarcus Cousins Dropping the Puck for UK Hockey

Here is some footage of former University of Kentucky star DeMarcus Cousins dropping the puck before Friday night's UK hockey game (fast forward to 8:00 for Cousins):



* Video by UKWildcathockey on YouTube

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Siva Nails Game-Winner in Louisville's Red-White Scrimmage


Peyton Siva nailed a game-winner to give the White Team an 86-85 win over the Red Team in Louisville's Red-White scrimmage on Friday night.

Here is recap from U of L:

LOUISVILLE, Ky. - On a night that college men's basketball officially comes alive with 'Midnight Madness,' the University of Louisville men's basketball team showcased its Red-White intrasquad scrimmage on Friday night at the KFC Yum! Center in front of 11,614 fans, with the White Team posting a thrilling 86-85 victory over the Red Team behind Peyton Siva's last-second jumper.

The Cardinals return to action for their final intrasquad scrimmage on Oct. 22 at 7 p.m. at the KFC Yum! Center. Tickets, priced at $10 for lower arena seats and $5 for upper arena seats, are currently on sale at both U of L Ticket Offices, located near Gate 2 of Papa John's Cardinal Stadium off Floyd Street; and on the third floor of the Swain Student Activities Center. Both locations are open weekdays from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. Tickets will also be sold before and during the Cardinals' game against Rutgers on Oct. 21.

A junior, Siva finished the game with 19 points and game-highs in steals (9) and assists (7). Senior teammate Kyle Kuric led the White squad with 24 points - 18 coming in the second half - behind five 3-pointers and seven rebounds. Sophomore guard Russ Smith chipped in 17 points and recorded seven steals, while redshirt junior Jared Swopshire, who missed the entire 2010-11 campaign with a groin injury, played an inspiring 19 minutes, collecting seven points and nine boards.

The White Team took its first lead of the second half, 64-63, with just 8:52 remaining in the period after Kuric's dunk on a fastbreak. They extended the lead to as much as seven at the 6:55 mark before the Red Team regained a one-point lead, 85-84, with 23 seconds to go behind a jumper by George Mason transfer Luke Hancock. Siva, though, would not be outdone, bringing the White Team the length of the court and connecting on a jumper in the paint with one second remaining for the game-winning shot.

The Red Team was in command for most of the first half, heading to the break leading, 42-39. Neither squad team raced too far ahead throughout the contest, with the largest lead - a nine-point advantage - coming from the Red Team early in the second period. In the waning minutes of the first, the Red Team's six-point advantage quickly slipped to a three-point lead following Russ Smith's fast-break layup at the 31-second mark. The White Team capitalized on the Red Team's 15 first-half turnovers and converted them into 18 points.

Sophomore Gorgui Dieng led the Red Team with a double-double, recording 26 points and 17 boards, while also tallying five blocks and four assists. Highly touted freshman Chane Behanan netted 20 points and grabbed 10 boards in the loss. Hancock finished with 12 points on 5-of-10 shooting.

Complete Release

Peyton Siva talked about hitting the game-winning shot:

Eastern Kentucky Holds First Practice of 2011-12


The Eastern Kentucky Colonels held their first official practice of 2011-12 on Friday.

Here's a rundown from EKU:

RICHMOND, Ky. – The 2011-12 collegiate basketball season is just around the corner. Squeaky sneakers, bouncing balls and plenty of whistles could be heard in McBrayer Arena Friday afternoon as the Eastern Kentucky University men’s basketball team held its first official team practice of the season.

Only one out of the 14 players on the roster is a fourth year player – senior guard Joshua Jones. He was a double-figure scorer for Eastern one year ago and will be counted upon for leadership on both ends of the court. Jones, who has started 83 games in his EKU career, is the team’s top returning scorer at 10.7 points per game.

Two opportunities are available to catch a glimpse of the Colonels before they play their home opener in December. EKU will host Halloween Hoopfest on Thursday, Oct. 27 and an exhibition game against Urbana on Wednesday, Nov. 2. Those two events are open to the public and free to all fans.

Davis vs. Kidd-Gilchrist: Vote for the "Helmet Dunk" of the Week

CoachCal.com wants you to vote for the "helmet dunk" of the week. This week's candidates are Anthony Davis and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist:





Vote for the Best Dunk

Ramel Bradley Back in Top Form in Israel


Former University of Kentucky guard Ramel Bradley is back in top form after an injury early in 2011.

Bradley returned to action for Maccabi Ashdod on Sunday, scoring a team-high 31 points in a 70-58 loss to Ironi Ashkelon.

Ashdod led 25-16 after the first quarter, but was outscored 54-33 throughout the rest of the game.

Bradley was leading the top-level Premier League in scoring at 17.7 points per game when he was injured last last season.

NCAA Has Not Cleared Louisville Freshman Wayne Blackshear


The NCAA Clearinghouse has still not given Louisville freshman Wayne Blackshear the green light to play in 2011-12.

Rick Pitino confirmed the news over the weekend.

Here is an excerpt from CBSSports.com:

"It's just a matter of the Clearinghouse clearing him," Louisville coach Rick Pitino told CBSSports.com, meaning the Clearinghouse hasn't yet cleared the McDonald's All-American to compete as a freshman.

Blackshear is a 6-foot-5 wing from Chicago.

CBSSports.com rated him as the 24th-best prospect in the Class of 2011.

"Yes," Pitino answered when asked if he's optimistic Blackshear will get through the Clearinghouse. "They're being a lot tougher this year than they have been in the past. But Wayne's situation is, I think, pretty good. We are optimistic."


Louisville freshman still waiting to be cleared

Antoine Walker Agrees to New Deal with Idaho Stampede


Former University of Kentucky star Antoine Walker will return to the NBA Developmental League.

Walker has agreed to a deal with the Idaho Stampede, the team he played for last season in the D-League. The contract is said to be worth $25,000.

Last season, Walker averaged 16 points, 6.3 rebounds and 3.4 assists with the Stampede.

Source: Rotoworld.com

Rick Pitino Talks Basketball and Calipari in Recent Interview

University of Louisville head coach Rick Pitino was a guest recently on WKRD-790's radio show "The Early Birds" with Drew Deener.

In the interview, Pitino discussed a variety of subjects including the U of L basketball luncheon, conference expansion, the Red-White game and recent "jabs" between Pitino and John Calipari.

Here is the complete interview:

Pitino Interview 790AM by thecardinalconnect

Here are the comments about Calipari:

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