Saturday, October 19, 2013

Video: Anthony Davis Swats John Wall's Dunk Attempt

Watch as former Kentucky star Anthony Davis commits a Cat-on-Cat crime when John Wall goes up for the two handed dunk:



Here is Wall beating the buzzer with a high floater earlier in the game:


Friday, October 18, 2013

Sneak Peek at Big Blue Madness Setup

Here are few early looks at the Rupp Arena setup for tonight's Big Blue Madness:







Billy Donovan Praises Julius Randle, Says His Best Skill is Passing Ability

Florida head coach Billy Donovan had great praise for Kentucky freshman Julius Randle during SEC Media Days.

Donovan, who coached Randle on Team USA's 18-under team in 2012, said Randle's best skill may be his passing ability.

Here is an excerpt of Donovan's comments from GatorSports.com:

But Florida coach Billy Donovan said he thinks the preseason accolades surrounding the 6-foot-9, 250-pound Randle are justified. Donovan coached Randle when he was on Team USA's 18-under gold medal winning team in 2012 and tried to recruit him to UF.
 
“I love him,” Donovan said. “First he's got a really, really high basketball IQ. I think he's a pass-first high. He's very unselfish. I think the best skill he may have is passing the basketball.
 
“He's as quick of a 6-9, 240 guy as I've ever seen with the ball in his hands. He's got great handling and passing skills. I think his jump shot has gotten better, his low post game has gotten better, but he's an incredible player on his feet.”
 

Pelicans Exercise Third-Year Option on Anthony Davis

The New Orleans Pelicans announced yesterday that the team has exercised the third-year option on former Kentucky star Anthony Davis.

Davis averaged 13.5 points, 8.2 rebounds, 1.8 blocks and 1.2 steals per game during his rookie season.

The Pelicans will take on the Washington Wizards in an NBA preseason game at Rupp Arena tomorrow night at 7:00 p.m. ET.

Here is a release from NBA.com:

NEW ORLEANS – The New Orleans Pelicans announced today that the team has exercised the third-year options on Anthony Davis and Austin Rivers.

Davis, the first overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft, started 60 of the 64 contests he appeared in and averaged 13.5 points, 8.2 rebounds,1.8 blocks and 1.2 steals in his rookie season. The 2012-13 NBA All-Rookie First Team member led all rookies in rebounds per game, blocks per game, steals per game and double-doubles.

Rivers, the tenth overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft, averaged 6.2 points, 2.1 assists and 1.8 rebounds in 61 contests (26 starts) throughout his rookie campaign.


Karl Towns is in Lexington for Big Blue Madness

Kentucky commit Karl Towns is in Lexington for Big Blue Madness.

KATis32 I want to do something this weekend? What to do??

KATis32 Thinkin blue #BBN

KATis32 Next Stop.....Madness http://instagram.com/p/flyUMEiTcp

Joe B. Hall Reveals the History of Kentucky's Big Blue Madness

Former University of Kentucky player and head coach Joe B. Hall reveals the history of UK's "Big Blue Madness":


Kenneth Faried Ends Up in "Falling Businessman" Prank Video

Former Morehead State star Kenneth Faried and a female friend happened to be walking through the mall during the filming of a "falling businessman" prank video.

Faried seems to be genuinely concerned about the fallen man, who looks up and says, "aren't you the Manimal?"

Check it out (skip to 1:12 for Faried):


Thursday, October 17, 2013

2016 Star Harry Giles to Visit Kentucky for Big Blue Madness

Harry Giles, who ranks No. 2 overall on the Rivals.com list for 2016, posted on Twitter tonight that he will be visiting Kentucky for Big Blue Madness tomorrow night:

TheReal_HG3 I will be headed to Lexington Kentucky tomorrow for the #BBM tomorrow night! University of Kentucky I'm headed your way! 🐯🔵

Giles is a 6-foot-9 power forward at Wesleyan Christian Academy (NC).

Report: Andrew Wiggins' $180 Million Shoe Deal Was a Hoax

According to adidas spokesperson, rumors that Kansas freshman Andrew Wiggins is set to earn a $180 million adidas deal after college are false.

SoleCollector.com has obtained the fraudulent letter and posted it online with a message from an adidas spokesperson. The site also says such a letter from a brand CEO to an amateur athlete during the window of time the athlete was attempting to make a college decision would be a major violation.

Here is an excerpt from SoleCollector.com:

It all apparently stems from this alleged memo from adidas Group CEO Herbert Hainer, addressed blankly to a Wiggins representative, which Sole Collector has exclusively obtained below and has also confirmed to be entirely fake.  

"There is a fraudulent letter that claims to be from our company offering Mr. Wiggins a contract. Any reasonable review of the letter would determine its lack of credibility," an adidas Basketball spokesperson told Sole Collector this morning. "Beyond this, we do not comment on rumors or speculation about potential partnerships."

The undated hoax letter, from a brand CEO to an amateur athlete, would undoubtedly be a major violation during the window in which Wiggins was deciding on which college he would attend. That should of course be red flag #1 as to the letter's lack of authenticity.

In the sports marketing world, an undated, unaddressed memo outlining a $180 Million offer with a $60 Million window range to an amateur athlete would never exist under any circumstance, let alone be hand-signed by a CEO.

Even though Wiggins chose the adidas-sponsored University of Kansas for his lone college year, I think it's definitely too soon to say adidas is the frontrunner simply because of that. That would be an entirely naive way of framing things. By all accounts, he simply picked the best college fit for himself, and I don't place much stock in his school choice impacting his sneaker deal one way or another.

Complete Article

Frank Martin Thinks Calipari Needs His Own McDonald's Sign

South Carolina head coach Frank Martin praised UK head man John Calipari at SEC Media Days.

Martin said Calipari is "a relentless recruiter who coaches as well as anyone in the country." He also joked that Calipari might need to put up his own version of a McDonald's sign:

JerryTipton Frank Martin: "McDonald's used to put up sign 2 billion served. Cal is going to have to put up 200 billion McDonald's All-Americans served."

Pitino: "Chane Behanan is no longer part of our basketball team"; Suspended Indefinitely

Louisville head coach Rick Pitino stated during his press conference moments ago that Chane Behanan has been suspended indefinitely and "is no longer a part of our basketball team."

ericcrawford  Chane Behanan has been suspended indefinitely from #uofL

ericcrawford Behanan's violation is of university policy. He will not be allowed to participate in any basketball activity.

ericcrawford Pitino: "Chane Behanan is no longer a part of our basketball team. He has been suspended by the university."

ericcrawford Pitino said: "Can he come back? We set up a situation for him to come back, and he already violated it."

ericcrawford Pitino: "We want to see Chane prosper as a person."

ericcrawford Pitino says Wayne Blackshear will play the four spot.

ericcrawford Pitino: "We are very concerned about Chane Behanan that he move forward and prosper as a person."

ericcrawford Pitino on Behanan. "It's multiple things. Don't ask what it is, we're not going to tell you."

ericcrawford Pitino says Behanan is no longer living in the team's dormitory.

Kentucky Tops USA Today Sports Coaches Poll, Louisville No. 3

Kentucky will enter the 2013-14 college basketball season as No. 1 in the USA Today Sports Coaches Poll. The Wildcats earned 16 first-place votes and 767 overall points to top the poll for only the second time ever (1996).

Michigan State will enter the season at No. 2. The Spartans, which return four starts from last season's 27-9 team, have 749 points and 3 first-place votes.

Defending national champions Louisville is No. 3 with 741 points and 10 first-place votes.

Duke and Arizona round out the top 5.

USA Today Sports Coaches Preseason Poll

RankTeamRecordPointsFirst Place VotesPrevious Rank
1
 
Kentucky
21-1276716NR
2
 
Michigan St.
27-9749313
3
 
Louisville
35-5741101
4
 
Duke
30-671035
5
 
Arizona
27-8637014
6
 
Kansas
31-662308
7
 
Syracuse
30-1055103
8
 
Florida
29-855009
9
 
Michigan
31-854802
10
 
Ohio St.
29-853306
11
 
North Carolina
25-114940NR
12
 
Oklahoma St.
24-94620NR
13
 
Memphis
31-5334018
14
 
Gonzaga
32-3270012
15
 
Va. Commonwealth
27-9258023
16
 
Wichita St.
30-923304
17
 
Marquette
26-9230011
18
 
Oregon
28-9175015
19
 
Connecticut
20-101670NR
20
 
New Mexico
29-6153019
21
 
Wisconsin
23-12148022
22
 
Notre Dame
25-101280NR
23
 
UCLA
25-101210NR
24
 
Indiana
29-711807
25
 
Virginia
23-121030NR
Schools Dropped Out
Others Receiving Votes
Baylor 102; Colorado 93; Creighton 87; Iowa 86; Tennessee 73; Georgetown 38; Harvard 28; Pittsburgh 23; California 16; Boise State 11; Saint Louis 8; La Salle 7; Temple 4; Missouri 4; Villanova 4; Kansas State 3; LSU 2; Iowa State 2; Arizona State 2; Illinois 2; Georgia 1; UNLV 1.

John Calipari, Alex Poythress at SEC Basketball Media Days

Here is Kentucky head coach John Calipari speaking at SEC Media Days:



Here is Alex Poythress talking to the media:


Florida's Patric Young to UK Freshmen: College Basketball Is No "Walk in the Park"

Florida's Patric Young sent a message to Kentucky's talented class of incoming freshmen this morning at SEC media days.

From Jerry Tipton of the Herald-Leader:

JerryTipton Fla big Patric Young on UK's frosh: "I hope they think they think they can walk on the court and beat (teams). ...

JerryTipton Added Young: "When they play real top teams, they'lls ee it's not a walk in the park. 1-and-done is not for everybody."

Northern Kentucky to Host Black N Gold Madness Tonight

The Northern Kentucky University men's basketball team will tip off the 2013-14 season with Black N Gold Madness tonight at the Bank of Kentucky Center.

Here are details from NKU:



Bellarmine Tips Off 2013-14 Season with Annual Morning Madness

Bellarmine University tipped off the 2013-14 men's basketball season with "Morning Madness" on Tuesday.

Here's a report from WLKY:


Behind-The-Scenes Look at Kentucky's Men's Basketball Media Days

Check out this behind-the-scenes look at Kentucky's men's basketball media days:


Morehead State to Host Annual Hysteria Event Next Thursday

Morehead State will host their annual Morehead Hysteria event next Thursday at 7:30 p.m. ET.

Here are details from MSU:

MOREHEAD, Ky. - Morehead State will host Morehead Hysteria at Johnson Arena on Thursday, Oct. 24, at 7:30 p.m. ET.  The annual event is free of charge and will feature both 2013-14 Eagle basketball teams, along with the MSU cheerleaders and dance team.

The 34-time national champion cheerleading program will start the festivities, which will be followed by the introduction of the women's team at approximately 7:35 p.m.  A three-point contest and light scrimmage will be held following the introductions.

"This was an exciting event last year, and we are looking forward to seeing lots of Eagle fans on Oct. 24," Head Women's Basketball Coach Tom Hodges said. "We have been working hard throughout the offseason, and we hope everyone will come out to see the team."

After a performance by the dance team, the men's team will be introduced at approximately 8 p.m.  A dunk contest and seven minute scrimmage will close out the festivities.

"We are looking forward to this year's Morehead Hysteria," Head Men's Basketball Coach Sean Woods said.  "We have a nice mixture of returning players and newcomers to show our fans.  This should be a terrific night for both basketball programs."

The women's team will begin its schedule with a home exhibition contest on Friday, Nov. 1, at 5:15 p.m. versus Kentucky Christian.

The men will begin play on Saturday, Nov. 2, with a home exhibition versus St. Catharine (Ky.). Tipoff is set for 7 p.m.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Derrick Rose Welcomes Peyton Siva to the NBA with Nasty Crossover

Watch as NBA superstar Derrick Rose works over former Louisville point guard Peyton Siva with some nasty moves:


ESPN's Seth Greenberg Compares Julius Randle to LeBron James

ESPN basketball analyst Seth Greenberg, who has coached at such schools as South Florida and Virginia Tech, had some high praise for Kentucky freshman Julius Randle today.

Greenberg compared Randle to NBA superstar LeBron James.

rickbozich ESPN analyst Seth Greenberg: "(Kentucky's) Julius Randle is as impressive a freshman I've seen since I saw LeBron James."

rickbozich ESPN's Seth Greenberg also on Julius Randle: "If he decides I can get any shot I want, when I want it, there’s no guarding him."

Obviously James did not play in college but that is still pretty high praise from a longtime coach who knows how to evaluate talent.

Video: John Calipari at Kentucky Basketball Media Day

Check out John Calipari's press conference at UK basketball media day:


Media Picks UK to Win SEC Title in 2013-14, Randle is Preseason Player of the Year

The media has picked Kentucky to win the Southeastern Conference title in 2013-14.

UK freshman Julius Randle is the media's preseason pick for SEC Player of the Year.

Here is more from UK:

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – The University of Kentucky men’s basketball team was tabbed by the media to win its 46th Southeastern Conference championship this season as announced by the league office on Wednesday. Furthermore, the media selected freshman Julius Randle as the favorite to win the league’s Player of the Year honor.

Voting was conducted by a select panel of both SEC and national media members. Each school selected media members that cover their team and additional media from across the nation were selected by the conference office to comprise the voting panel.

The Wildcats were the overall preseason favorite, marking the ninth time since 1998-99 that UK was the early-season pick. UK tallied 21 first-place votes, while Florida earned five first-place votes and Tennessee received one.

Randle garnered 11 votes as the media selected him as the favorite for the conference Player of the Year award. Tennessee’s Jordan McRae was second with five votes. Five other league players received at least one vote for Player of the Year recognition.

UK’s freshman from Dallas was also picked to the preseason All-SEC First Team, and is the only freshman to earn the honor. The other four members of the first team include three seniors and a junior.

Three Kentucky players were picked to earn second-team honors including sophomore Willie Cauley-Stein and freshmen Andrew Harrison and Dakari Johnson. Cauley-Stein was an All-SEC Freshman team selection in 2013.

The Cats will tipoff the 2013-14 season on Friday, Oct. 18 with Big Blue Madness at Rupp Arena. The annual event begins at 7:30 p.m. ET. ESPN will be on hand with Jimmy Dykes and Darrin Horn there to provide commentary on the action.

Louisville Picked to Win AAC in 2013-14; Russ Smith is Preseason Player of the Year

Louisville is the unanimous pick to win the inaugural American Athletic Conference championship in men's basketball.

The Cardinals received 81 total points and 9 first-place votes in the league's preseason coaches' poll. Connecticut is picked second with 69 points and one first-place vote.

Russ Smith is the preseason pick for AAC Player of the Year.

2013-14 AMERICAN ATHLETIC CONFERENCE
PRESEASON INDIVIDUAL HONORS

Preseason Player of the Year
Russ Smith, G, Sr., Louisville

Preseason Rookie of the Year
Keith Frazier, G, Fr., SMU

Preseason All-Conference Teams

First Team
Sean Kilpatrick, G, Cincinnati
Shabazz Napier, G, UConn *
Chane Behanan, F, Louisville
Russ Smith, G, Louisville *
Joe Jackson, G, Memphis *

Second Team
Isaiah Sykes, G, UCF
Ryan Boatright, G, UConn
TaShawn Thomas, F, Houston
Montrezl Harrell, F, Louisville
Anthony Collins, G, USF
Victor Rudd, F, USF

* unanimous selection

Release from AAC

2013-14 AMERICAN ATHLETIC CONFERENCE
PRESEASON COACHES' POLL
RankTeam (First-Place Votes)Pts.
1.Louisville (9) *81
2.UConn (1)69
3.Memphis68
4.Cincinnati58
5.Temple40
6.SMU39
7.Houston28
8.USF27
9.UCF24
10.Rutgers16


 

2017 Forward Brian Bowen to Attend Big Blue Madness

Brian Bowen, a 6-foot-6 forward in the class of 2017, will visit Kentucky's Big Blue Madness with high school teammate Eric Davis:

NextCats Class of 2017 star Brian Bowen will attend Big Blue Madness with HS teammate Eric Davis (2015), their coach tells me.

Bowen reportedly already holds offers from Michigan State and Missouri.

Here is Bowen in action during open gym:



Current list of BBM visitors:

2014

- Stanley Johnson
- Trey Lyles
- James Blackmon Jr.
- Tyler Ulis (already committed)

2015

- Eric Davis

2016

- Jayson Tatum
- Josh Langford
- Kobi Simmons

2017

- Brian Bowen

Report: Daniel Orton Picked Up by Philadelphia 76ers

Former Kentucky center Daniel Orton has reportedly been picked up by the Philadelphia 76ers. He was waived by Oklahoma City late last week.

According to Darnell Mayberry of The Oklahoman:

DarnellMayberry Daniel Orton has been picked up by Philadelphia. He was released by the Thunder last Thursday.

Photo: NBA.com

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Highlights: UK Recruit Stanley Johnson at USA Basketball Camp

Check out these new highlights of Kentucky recruit Stanley Johnson at USA Basketball Camp:


Perry Central's Justin Johnson Commits to Western Kentucky University

Perry County Central senior Justin Johnson has committed to Western Kentucky University.

Johnson, a 6-foot-7 small forward, made his announcement on Twitter:

Tickets for Kentucky's First 4 Home Games and Blue/White on Sale Today

Tickets for Kentucky's Blue/White scrimmage and first four home games go on sale this evening at 6:00 p.m. ET.

Here are details from UK:

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Tickets for Kentucky’s first four home men’s basketball games will go on sale Tuesday, Oct. 15 at 6:00 p.m. ET.  Tickets will first be available online at www.ticketmaster.com or by calling Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000 beginning Tuesday evening. 

Any tickets remaining after Tuesday’s sale will be available for purchase through the UK Ticket Office by calling (800) 928-2287 on Wednesday, Oct. 16. Ticket office hours are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday. Remaining tickets for sale will come from the unsold student ticket allotment.

Lower level tickets (based upon availability) are priced at $50, and upper level tickets are $42.  Tickets for Kentucky’s two exhibition games Transylvania (Nov. 1) and Montevallo (Nov. 4), and the first two regular season home games UNC Asheville (Nov. 8) and Northern Kentucky (Nov. 10) will be available.

Tickets for the Blue-White Scrimmage at Rupp Arena on Oct.29 are still available.  Lower level tickets (singles only) are $10, and upper level tickets are $5.  Scrimmage tickets may be purchased through the UK Ticket Office (800.928.2287), Rupp Arena Box Office (859.233.3535) and Ticketmaster (800.745.3000).  Fans may also obtain scrimmage tickets online at www.ticketmaster.com or at statewide Ticketmaster outlets.

For a complete listing of on sale dates, visit www.UKAthletics.com/tickets.

The Cats will tipoff the 2013-14 season on Friday, Oct. 18 with Big Blue Madness at Rupp Arena.

Bledsoe, Cousins Both Wish They Would've Returned to Kentucky

University of Kentucky sophomore Willie Cauley-Stein says former UK stars Eric Bledsoe and DeMarcus Cousins both told him they wish they'd stayed in college longer.

Here is a report from KSTV's Thomas Beisner on Twitter:

thomasbeisner Willie Cauley-Stein says Eric Bledsoe and DeMarcus Cousins both told him they wish they'd stayed at UK longer.

OVC Releases ESPN Television Schedule for 2013-14

Eastern Kentucky, Murray State and Morehead State will all be featured in regular season Ohio Valley Conference games on the ESPN family of networks.

The Colonels will be featured twice, while the Eagles and Racers will each make a single appearance on ESPNU during the regular season.

The OVC semifinals and championship game will also be shown on ESPNU and ESPN2, respectively.

Here is a release from the OVC:
BRENTWOOD, Tenn. – The Ohio Valley Conference announced its slate of Conference games across ESPN platforms for the 2013-14 season on Wednesday.

The schedule includes seven total men's basketball games (four regular season contests and three OVC Tournament games) that will appear on one of the networks during the season. Each of the regular season games and the OVC Tournament semifinals will air live on ESPNU.

The OVC Tournament championship game will air on ESPN2 at 6:00 p.m. CT on Saturday, March 8. The tournament will be held at Municipal Auditorium in Nashville, Tenn.

The package is part of a five-year agreement with ESPN. The new deal runs through the completion of the 2017-18 season and also includes a minimum of eight football games to be carried on ESPN3 annually as well as the ability for the OVC to receive additional national exposure.

"We are delighted to maintain our relationship with ESPN, the proven worldwide leader in sports," said Beth DeBauche, OVC Commissioner. "This new deal is the foundation of a more comprehensive media approach for men's basketball that includes additional national and regional exposure."

The first live game event telecast on ESPNU, launched on March 4, 2005, was a Southeast Missouri State/Eastern Kentucky OVC Tournament semifinal which followed a live College GameDay telecast from Oklahoma State. The 24-hour college sports television network airs more than 650 live events annually. ESPNU is available nationwide in approximately 75 million households and has long-term carriage agreements with all 10 of the top multichannel TV providers - Cablevision, Charter, Comcast, Cox, DirecTV (Channel 208), DISH Network (Channel 141), Mediacom, Time Warner Cable, Verizon FiOS TV and AT&T U-verse.

A complete television schedule with additional national and regional exposure will be released soon.


2013-14 OVC ESPN Television Schedule

Thursday, January 16
Belmont at Eastern Kentucky 7:00 p.m. ET (6:00 p.m. CT) (ESPNU)

Thursday, February 6
Murray State at Belmont, 8:00 p.m. CT (ESPNU)

Saturday, February 8
Morehead State at Eastern Kentucky, 11:00 a.m. ET (10:00 a.m. CT) (ESPNU)

Thursday, February 13
Tennessee State at Belmont, 8:00 p.m. CT (ESPNU)

Friday, March 7
OVC Tournament Semifinal #1, 6:30 p.m. CT (ESPNU)
OVC Tournament Semifinal #2, 9:00 p.m. CT (ESPNU)

Saturday, March 8
OVC Tournament Championship, 6:00 p.m. CT (ESPN2)

Marshall Henderson Meets Texas A&M's President

Talk about a meeting of the minds...check out this awesome picture of Ole Miss sharpshooter Marshall Henderson posing with Texas A&M's President during Saturday's football game:

3HL1045 Wow. RT @ClayTravisBGID Marshall Henderson met Texas A&M's prez. RT @dbrooks1024: pic.twitter.com/FVZzTVHcvc

New Highlights of UK Recruit James Blackmon Jr. at USA Basketball Camp

Check out these new highlights of Kentucky recruit James Blackmon Jr. at USA Basketball Camp:


It's Official: Nashville Becomes Primary Home of the SEC Basketball Championships

As expected, The Nashville Sports Council has announced a deal with the Southeastern Conference to make Nashville and the Bridgestone Arena the site for twelve consecutive SEC Basketball Championships.
 
The men's tournament will be held in Nashville nine times between 2015 and 2026.
 
Here is a release from UK:
 
Nashville, Tenn., (Oct. 15, 2013) The Nashville Sports Council announced a historic deal with the Southeastern Conference to make Nashville and the Bridgestone Arena the site for twelve consecutive SEC Basketball Championships.  The SEC Men’s Basketball Tournament will be hosted nine times (2015-2017, 2019-2021, 2023-2025) and the SEC Women’s Tournament will be hosted three times (2018, 2022, 2026).
 
"The entire Nashville community is honored to be named as the host city for the SEC Men's Basketball Tournament and have the opportunity to continue to host the SEC Women's Basketball Tournament during the next 12 years,” said Scott Ramsey, President & CEO, Nashville Sports Council.  “We appreciate the opportunity to work with the SEC and ESPN to create a showcase event for SEC basketball teams, coaches and fans."
 
In May, SEC Commissioner Mike Slive announced that the league’s athletic directors had voted unanimously to explore a primary site for the men’s basketball tournament.
“Nashville has long been a valued partner of the Southeastern Conference and we are pleased to establish this long-term agreement that will benefit our men’s and women’s basketball tournaments,” Slive said.  “Nashville, as a proven host, provides SEC teams and fans with a wonderful experience.”
 
“We couldn’t be more excited to make Nashville and Bridgestone Arena the home of Southeastern Conference basketball for years to come,” Nashville Predators/Bridgestone Arena President and COO Sean Henry said. “We have been able to build a tremendous partnership with the SEC through unwavering support from the Nashville Sports Council, Metro and basketball fans throughout the United States, and we look forward to making our partnership even stronger during the 12 tournament run hosted by Bridgestone Arena.  We have an ultimate goal to make Bridgestone Arena the No. 1 entertainment venue in the country, and being selected by the SEC to host its tournaments is just another milestone towards achieving that goal.” 
 
The Nashville Sports Council has hosted an SEC Basketball Championship at the Bridgestone Arena nine times in its history.  The men’s tournament was played in Nashville in 2001, 2006, 2010 and 2013, with the women playing in 2002, 2004, 2008, 2011 and 2012. 
 
“Nashville is proud to be selected as the primary site of SEC basketball,” Nashville Mayor Karl Dean said. “Whenever the tournament is in town, our entire downtown is energized. Our hotels, restaurants and the honkytonks on Lower Broadway all benefit from the thousands of visitors that the tournament draws, and tournament visitors benefit from the wonderful food, music and hospitality Nashville has to offer. The tournaments are going to be a great experience for the fans and a great win for our tourism industry.”
 
Through the Nashville Sports Council’s Scorecard Analysis, the men’s tournaments hosted in Nashville have produced $56 million in direct economic impact and drawn nearly 750,000 attendees. The women’s tournaments hosted in Nashville have produced $35 million in direct economic impact and attracted over 200,000 attendees.  The tournaments will also help bolster Nashville’s image.  All games of the each tournament will be nationally televised through the SEC Network, ESPN, or ABC.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Calipari: 12 NBA Scouts Attended Kentucky's Practice Today

According to head coach John Calipari, there were 12 NBA scouts at Kentucky's practice today.

The UK head coach also noted that Willie Cauley-Stein and Alex Poythress were both back at practice.

Calipari posted the following on his Facebook page:

Great practice. The guys came back strong after a small weekend break. Alex is getting healthier and it was good to have him & Willie back. Having all 12 scholarship players available today made a difference. We also had 12 NBA scouts at practice which is more than normal.

Russ Smith Named to Lute Olson Preseason All-America Team

Louisville senior Russ Smith was recently named to the 2013-14 Lute Olson Preseason All-America Team.

Here is a release from Collegeinsider.com:

BOSTON, MA  -- Ohio State's Aaron Craft headlines the preseason All-America team, which was announced on Wednesday.

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

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

Complete Release

2013-14 LUTE OLSON PRESEASON ALL-AMERICA TEAM

Kyle Anderson6-9So.UCLA
Isaiah Austin7-1So.Baylor
Billy Baron6-2Sr.Canisius
Jahii Carson5-11So.Arizona State
Aaron Craft6-2Sr.Ohio State
Sam Dekker6-7So.Wisconsin
Cleanthony Early6-8Sr.Wichita State
C.J. Fair6-8Sr.Syracuse
Corey Hawkins6-3Jr.UC Davis
Tyler Haws6-5Jr.BYU
Rodney Hood6-8So.Duke
James McAdoo6-9Jr.North Carolina
Doug McDermott6-8Sr.Creighton
Jake Odum6-4Sr.Indiana State
Kevin Pangos6-2Jr.Gonzaga
Adreian Payne6-10Sr.Michigan State
Marcus Smart6-4So.Oklahoma State
Russ Smith6-0Sr.Louisville
Jarnell Stokes6-8Jr.Tennessee
T.J. Warren6-8So.NC State
Dez Wells6-5Jr.Maryland
C.J. Wilcox6-5Sr.Washington

DeMarcus Cousins Thinks the Kings Need to Sign Chris Mullin to a 10-Day Contract

Former Kentucky star DeMarcus Cousins thinks the Sacramento Kings might need to sign NBA hall of famer Chris Mullin to a 10-day contract after watching the legend shoot in a three-point contest recently.

Watch as Mullin, 50, drains shot-after-shot:




SEC Men's Basketball Tournament Setting Anchor in Nashville

The Southeastern Conference is set to officially announce a move that will place the league's men's basketball tournament in Nashville nine times during the next twelve years.

Here is more from Tennessean.com:

Nashville will host 12 consecutive SEC basketball tournaments starting in 2015 — nine men’s and three women’s — according to a source.

The SEC sent out a press release stating a “historic announcement” would be made on Tuesday at Bridgestone Arena with SEC commissioner Mike Slive, Nashville mayor Karl Dean, Bridgestone Arena president/COO Sean Henry and Nashville Sports council president/CEO Scott Ramsey in attendance.

The 2015, 2016 and 2\019 tournaments already were scheduled for Nashville.

Complete Article

Upcoming SEC Men's Basketball Tournaments:

2014 Atlanta
2015 Nashville
2016 Nashville
2017 St. Louis
2018 Tampa
2019 Nashville
2020 Nashville
2021 Nashville
2022 Nashville
2023 Nashville
2024 Nashville
2025 Nashville

Video: Highlights of Kentucky's 2013 Recruiting Class

Check out this new highlight mix of Kentucky's 2013 men's basketball recruiting class:


CBS Sports Picks EKU to Win the OVC, Expects Big Things from Ryan Harrow in the Sun Belt

CBSSports.com has broken down the "Best of the Rest" conferences in college basketball.

The site picks Eastern Kentucky University to win the Ohio Valley Conference and Georgia State to win the Sun Belt Conference.

Additionally, Ryan Harrow is the preseason pick as Best of the Rest Newcomer of the Year.

Conference USA

Projected Champion: Louisiana Tech

Keep An Eye On: Without Memphis, this league could have a stiff competition at the top – and up to three NCAA tournament bids. Louisiana Tech has four returning starters from a team that won 27 games in the WAC, including Kenneth Smith and Raheem Appleby. Southern Miss has won at least 20 games in four straight seasons, and Donnie Tyndall still has Neil Watson on board. Watch for UTEP, which has a talented lineup – even without Isaac Hamilton.

Ohio Valley

Projected Champion: Eastern Kentucky

Keep An Eye On: Eastern Kentucky won 25 games last season, but that was overshadowed by Belmont's dominance and Murray State's inconsistency. Now, with Glenn Cosey and four starters back, all eyes are on the Colonels. Look for Southeast Missouri to also make a move, with forwards Tyler Stone and Nino Johnson leading the way.

Sun Belt

Projected Champion: Georgia State

Keep An Eye On: Georgia State could certainly be a team to watch if it makes the NCAA tournament. The Panthers bring back four starters, including guards R.J. Hunter and Devonta White and forward Manny Atkins. Moreover, they get the immediate services of Kentucky transfer Ryan Harrow. That's not it, though. Louisiana-Lafayette has the duo of guard Elfrid Payton and Shawn Long, while Western Kentucky won 20 games and has four starters. And South Alabama's Augustine Rubit is a 20-10 threat every night. Watch this league.

Our Preseason “Best of the Rest” Newcomer of the Year

Ryan Harrow, Georgia State

The reputation surrounding Harrow is not all that positive right now, after he transferred from North Carolina State to Kentucky and now Georgia State. However, he's supremely talented and his quickness and athleticism should be far too much for the Sun Belt. Moreover, the pressure on him will by far less with the Panthers. In terms of freshmen, look for UTEP's Vincent Hunter and Harvard's Zena Edosomwan.

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Amico: Eric Bledsoe Has Sleeper Potential to be an All-Star

Sam Amico of Fox Sports thinks former Kentucky guard Eric Bledsoe is a sleeper pick to become an NBA All-Star.

Amico noted on Twitter that Bledsoe is now "the man" in Phoenix:

SamAmicoFSO Eirc Bledsoe, Suns. Is now The Man there. RT @kmccall13 who's your biggest sleeper as a potential all star this year?

Bledsoe is averaging 11.7 points, 4 rebounds, 5 assists and 3 steals per game for the Suns in the NBA preseason.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Utah Jazz Reportedly Interested in Trading for Marquis Teague

The Utah Jazz might be interested in trading for former Kentucky point guard Marquis Teague depending on the severity of Trey Burke's finger injury.

According to ESPN's Marc Stein:

ESPNSteinLine Hearing: Utah has previously shown trade interest in Bulls' Marquis Teague and could well revisit interest depending on Trey Burke timetable

ESPNSteinLine Jazz are scheduled to find out Monday if fractured finger suffered by Rookie of the Year contender Trey Burke tonight will require surgery

ESPNSteinLine And, no, I don't think it's premature to refer to Trey Burke as a ROY contender when Burke and Oladipo are such popular preseason ROY picks

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