Friday, March 28, 2014

Footage from Kentucky's Sweet 16 Open Practice

Check out this footage from Kentucky's Sweet 16 open practice:


Christian Laettner is Cheering for Louisville Tonight

Christian Laettner is cheering for the Louisville Cardinals tonight...which happens to be the 22nd anniversary of "the shot."

Cauley-Stein, Poythress and Polson Preview Tonight's Game vs. Louisville

Kentucky's Willie Cauley-Stein, Alex Poythress and Jarrod Polson preview tonight's game against Louisville:


Louisville Remakes the Selfie Song for Tonight's Sweet 16 Game

Louisville has remade the "Chainsmokers, Selfie" song and video for tonight's game. I'll be honest...this is my least favorite song but here you go:



HT: Kentucky Sports Radio

Sweet 16 Selfie lyrics:

When Russ was at the line
I kept on seeing him look, so intense.
Do you think he was just doing that to make the crowd go crazy?
Because he looked like Shoni and I didn't know if it was a Griner moment or what
and what about Luke? I don't know if it's just me or is he on fire?
Sooo... like what do you think?
Who's your favorite player?
How did that team even get in here?
Did you see them?
They're so green and those shorts are so tacky
Who wears blue anyway?
It's not even summer, how do our teams keep lighting it up?
After we go Sweet 16, let's go to Arlington?
I really want to
But first,
LET ME TAKE A SELFIE

[Beat Drops]

Can you guys help me pick a filter?
I don't know if I should go with XX Pro or Valencia
I wanna look slammin'
What should my caption be?
I want it to be clever
How about "L1C4," "CardNation" or Hashtag sweet16Selfie
I only got 10 likes in the last 5 minutes
Do you think I should take it down?
LET ME TAKE ANOTHER SELFIE

[Beat Drops]

Wait, pause, Asia Taylor just liked my selfie
That's so bounce
Is that guy sleeping over there?
Yeah, our games play way too late.
That's so ratchet
That girl is such a fake fanatic I bet she stole all her instgram photos from Elle Raiser
OK, let's go take our seats
Oh no, I forgot the tickets
Oh wait, nevermind here they are.
Let's go watch the big dance
There's no Peyton at this tourney
Oh yeah, he's a pro now.
Do you know anyone else here?
Oh my god, Trez just texted me
Should I go hang out with him?
I guess I took a good selfie

[Selfie on repeat]

LET ME TAKE A SELFIE

Kentucky Better Be Worried About Russdiculousness Tonight

The Kentucky Wildcats have one thing to worry about tonight...RUSSDICULOUSNESS!

Check out this hilarious set of Russ Smith highlights set to the MTV hit show Ridiculousness:

ColeClaybourn This 'Ridiculousness'-themed highlight tribute to Russ Smith is the best thing you'll watch today https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XzTngGCQUX4


Bruce Reed, Monty Wilson Named NAIA DI First Team All-Americans

Several players from Kentucky schools were recently named NAIA Division I All-Americans.

University of Pikeville placed Bruce Reed on the First Team, Keala King on the Second Team and Chris Cantino on the Third Team. UPIKE's Elisha Justice was named Honorable Mention.

Georgetown College's Monty Wilson was a First Team selection.

Eric Gaines (Campbellsville) and R.J. Scott (Cumberlands) were both named Honorable Mention.

2013-14 NAIA Division I Men's Basketball All-Americans

First Team          
Name Institution Pos. Yr. Ht. Hometown
De'End Parker Cal State San Marcos G Sr. 6-6 San Francisco, Calif.
Devin Griffin Columbia (Mo.) G Sr. 6-0 Fairview Heights, Ill.
Michael Stanley Emmanuel (Ga.) G Jr. 6-1 Mobile, Ala.
Kyle Teichmann ^* Freed-Hardeman (Tenn.) C Sr. 6-6 Brentwood, Tenn.
Monty Wilson Georgetown (Ky.) G Sr. 6-4 Decatur, Ill.
Brandon Davis % LSU Shreveport (La.) F Sr. 6-3 Pomona, Calif.
Bruce Reed Pikeville (Ky.) F Sr. 6-8 Olathe, Kan.
Dominique Rambo $ SAGU (Texas) G Sr. 5-10 Dallas, Texas
Preston Wynne Vanguard (Calif.) G Sr. 6-1 Wellpinit, Wash.
Daron Bell William Carey (Miss.) G Sr. 6-3 Waveland, Miss.
           
Second Team          
Talib Uqdah Arizona Christian G Sr. 5-11 Detroit, Mich.
Melvin Tillman Central Methodist (Mo.) G Sr. 6-0 Richmond, Ind.
Reggie Burke Coastal Georgia G Jr. 6-2 Tampa, Fla.
Zack Kleine # Evangel (Mo.) F Sr. 6-5 Mt. Vernon Mo.
Marcel Towns % Great Falls (Mont.) G Sr. 6-2 Tempe, Ariz.
Semar Farris Mid-America Christian (Okla.) G Jr. 5-5 Fort Worth, Texas
Xavier Roberson Our Lady of the Lake (Texas) G Sr. 6-1 Houston, Texas
Keala King Pikeville (Ky.) G Sr. 6-5 Compton, Calif.
Marty Wilkerson St. Gregory's (Okla.) G Jr. 5-9 Memphis, Tenn.
Chris Gorman Vanguard (Calif.) G Jr. 5-11 Oceanside, Calif.
           
Third Team          
James Johnson Culver-Stockton (Mo.) F Sr. 6-5 Saginaw Mich.
Cameron Lewis Fisk (Tenn.) G Jr. 6-3 Nashville, Tenn.
Latraius Mosley Life (Ga.) G Sr. 6-6 Athens, Ala.
Craig Anderson Lindenwood-Belleville (Ill.) G Jr. 6-3 Harlem, N.Y.
Luke Thomas MidAmerica Nazarene (Kan.) F Sr. 6-8 Raymore Mo.
Xavielle Brown Park (Mo.) G So. 6-2 Ft. Wayne, Ind.
Chris Cantino Pikeville (Ky.) F Jr. 6-8 Philadelphia, Pa.
Tyree Anderson Rocky Mountain (Mont.) G Jr. 6-3 Las Vegas, Nev.
Brandon Peters Talladega (Ala.) G Jr. 6-2 Houston, Texas
Markus Monroe Wayland Baptist (Texas) G Sr. 6-2 Monrovia, Calif.
 

Complete Release

Murray State Advances to CIT Tournament Semifinals

Murray State 85
Towson 73

Final from Murray, Kentucky

Game recap by MSU:

The Murray State Racers advanced to the CollegeInsider.com Tournament semifinals with an 85-73 win over the Towson Tigers at the CFSB Center in Murray, Ky.
 
The Racers (21-11) will host the Pacific Tigers (18-15) in one of the CIT semifinals at home in the CFSB Center Tuesday (April 1) at 8 p.m.
 
MSU's only senior, Dexter Fields, keyed a 24-6 burst that turned what had been a tight contest right from the tip, into the 12th straight home win for the Racers.
 
With the game tied 57-57 with 9:40 remaining, Fields hit back-to-back 3-pointers and the Racers were off and running with a game-changing run. Fields was 5-of-9 from long range for the game as the Racers overcame a 3-of-12 first half to hit 7-of-11 in the second half. Cameron Payne capped it with a 3-pointer and the Racers led the Tigers 81-63 with 3:17 left to play.
 
Payne led MSU with 24 points to go with seven assists. Fields was successful in keeping his final season with the Racers going with 15 points. Jonathan Fairell turned in his second straight double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds, while Jarvis Williams had 18 points, nine rebounds to go with three blocked shots and a pair of steals. Tyler Rambo played 18 productive minutes with six points and three steals.
 
Complete Recap




Wisconsin Celebrates Win with Incredible Dance Moves and a Visit from Aaron Rodgers

Wisconsin earned a big win over Baylor last night to advance to the Elite 8.

After the game, the Badgers celebrated in the locker room with some fascinating dance moves and a visit from Aaron Rodgers:


Kentucky Has Reached Out to Virginia Tech Transfer Trevor Thompson

According to a report at IndyStar.com, the Kentucky Wildcats have reached out to Virginia Tech transfer Trevor Thompson.

Thompson, a 6-foot-11 center, averaged 5.0 points and 4.7 rebounds for the Hokies as a freshman.

Here is an excerpt from IndyStar.com:

Trevor Thompson, a 2012 Ben Davis graduate, has been officially granted his release from Virginia Tech and has no shortage of suitors.

The 6-11 Thompson, who spent a year at St. John's Northwestern Military Academy after high school, played in 30 games and started 11 as a freshman at Virginia Tech. He averaged 5.0 points and 4.7 rebounds for the Hokies.

Thompson has heard from Arizona, Auburn, Florida, Georgetown, Kansas, Kentucky, Nebraska, Northwestern, Ohio State, Purdue, Tennessee and Xavier since getting his release. He'll work to set up visits in the near future.

Complete Release

John Calipari Talks About Kentucky vs. Louisville

Kentucky head coach John Calipari talks to the media about tonight's game against Louisville:

Q. John, there seems to be an awful lot of emphasis on your size and their ability to create turnovers. What factor would you look at that maybe has been overlooked this week in some of the pregame analysis?

COACH CALIPARI: Well, the one thing is that both teams are playing well. They’ve settled into a groove of how they’re going to play, how they’re creating shots for each other, how they’re creating turnovers. And when you watch them, they’re playing really good basketball. Everybody on their team has settled in to what they have to do for their team to win. They’re playing extremely hard and playing with great energy, playing physical, not afraid to bump and grind whether it’s inside/outside.
They’re a good team. They’re a really good team. And, again, of all the teams left, they may be playing better than anybody.

Q. In the first game, when you played them in the first half, they had no answer for Randle. I think he played 17 minutes, had 17 points, in the second half he cramped and didn’t do anything. Is he a particularly big mismatch problem for them?

 COACH CALIPARI: Maybe. I mean, obviously they watched that tape and they’ll have an answer for it. I think their zone and their matchup zone could be an answer for it. Putting Harrell on him, they put Van Treese on him during that game, I imagine they’ll put Harrell on him. But we’re playing different, too. So the game is we’re both just two different teams than we were that game. Some of the things we did in that game I shook my head and I imagine he did the same thing.

Q. John, can you talk about the difference between the team that kind of struggled throughout the regular season and the team we saw in the opening weekend that played really well against Kansas State and Wichita State?

 COACH CALIPARI: We didn’t struggle throughout the whole season. Every game we lost was like a twopoint, threepoint game. What happened was we found ourselves at Florida and at home and at Mississippi and we thought we figured it out and we went the other way, after the Mississippi game.
Then we went into conference tournament, and we started really gelling because we accepted roles and we did a better job. And a lot of this was on me. I mean, we hadn’t really defined the roles because we hadn’t really figured each other out. And I wasn’t real specific on how we were going to have to play. And so I can’t blame an 18 19yearold for that. That falls back on me. What I told John out in the hallway, I’m happy we didn’t run out of road before we got it or run out of runway before we finally figured it out.

Q. John, can you just generally trace the evolution of your team throughout this season, and at what point did you feel like they started to really get it?

 COACH CALIPARI: Our conference tournament. And you know, early on we were just trying to bulldog everybody. Early on, we weren’t creating good shots for each other. It was almost like we were five individuals. And I will tell you, when you’re starting five freshmen, that’s what it’s going to look like if they’ve never played together. Only two played together. As the year went on, we got better defensively. We started figuring things out. But again, I come back to before the conference tournament there were some things that I should have done two months before that I didn’t, and we tweaked a couple of things and all of a sudden we saw it in practice like the light went on. And I questioned myself, why wouldn’t I have done this two months ago? Now I come back to maybe they weren’t ready to accept it two months ago. Then we did something, another little thing that I wish I had done two months earlier before the NCAA Tournament. Now we’ve tried one more thing for this weekend. And again, these guys have taken them on. They’ve owned them. Small changes nothing different ways of thinking, basically. And so I’m really proud of them that they stuck together. Now, here’s the other thing, because you’re all saying very disappointing regular season. It wasn’t disappointing, but that’s what they had to hear. They had to hear how bad they were as players, how selfish they were, they’re not together. This isn’t a team. You can’t do this. This is what’s wrong.
They had to deal with that. And instead of separating, they stuck together. They kept believing in one another. They kept believing in the staff and wanted answers, how do we get this right and accepted answers. So I’m proud of them. And I told them. I mean, you guys, of any team that’s still standing, there’s no one that’s gone through what you have to be strong enough and have enough character now when the adversity hits. Because every one of us still playing, there’s going to be adversity hitting these games. It’s can you hold on to the rope? Can you continue to move forward even though the stuff looks a little bleak? And I think this team’s been through enough that they can do that.

Q. A little two parter, did you have an opinion on the ruling yesterday about the Northwestern players? And then kind of along those same lines, there’s this big debate about the way you run a program and the way let’s say Rick runs a program, the one and done versus keeping players. Is there like a right way or a wrong way there?

 COACH CALIPARI: There isn’t first of all, the first question has nothing to do with this game, so I leave it alone. But the second thing, I want you to understand there’s no plan that, who knew Eric Bledsoe was going to leave in a year. No one knew that. Who knew Josh Harrellson was going to grow up and be ready to go. Who knew that DeMarcus Cousins would mature enough to be able to leave. You’ve got guys who stayed two years, Terrence Jones and Doron Lamb and other guys who have gone on and done well. But our kids in general are going into that league and done well. They did the right thing by leaving for them. Now, would I rather have had Anthony Davis still on my team right now? Yeah. I’d like to still be coaching him. But I kind of like what he’s doing in the league for he and his family. We are doing things this year with my team that I’ve never done. Late in the season, anybody that knows me, knows we practice an hour and 15 minutes. We’ve been going 2 hours and a half, 245, 3 hours. I’ve never done that before. Guess what, this team needed it.
All of us, Rick never played zone before. He never played zone, now he’s playing zone all the time.
So we’re doing what we can do with where we are. The rule is not my rule. I believe it should be a twoyear rule. But it’s between the NBA and the Players Association. Has nothing to do with me or the NCAA. So I just think we’re all playing the hand we’re dealt. Kids are going on to the league from us and performing. And I’m proud of that. Would I like to have had them for four years, yes. But I also like what’s happened for them and their families. I’ll give you an example. John Wall and DeMarcus Cousins both go to the league, sign max deals and the first thing they do is give a million dollars back to charity. Well, you’re talking about great kids who deserve the opportunity and not at the expense of academics. We’ve had a 3.0 grade point average for the last four seasons. And they go to class. It’s not Internet, correspondence. They go to class, for four seasons. Brandon Knight was a straight A student. Alex Poythress is a straight A student. They all go to school. They all know why they’re there. The rule the way it is, I’m not punishing these kids. If they choose to leave, even though they maybe shouldn’t leave, but they still choose to leave, I’m going to support them. It’s their decision, for them, it’s not about me or about the University of Kentucky at that point.

Q. Every school has rivalries whether it’s Memphis, Tennessee, what’s different, though, about this rivalry that you found out since you’ve been the head coach at Kentucky?

COACH CALIPARI: People grieve for a year after the game. People celebrate for a year after the game. I’ve tried to not make it bigger than it is. But it doesn’t work.It’s one game. Shut up. (Laughter.) They’re in different leagues. It doesn’t matter what I say.But I have told the team: We will not make this game bigger than it is. It’s an NCAA Tournament game. We’ve gotta play a basketball game against a really good team. Every team still standing is playing a really good team. So that’s my message. Don’t make it bigger than it is, just play.

Q. John, you talked a little bit earlier about the evolution of your team. Can you address specifically James Young and how he has figured it out?

COACH CALIPARI: He’s still figuring it out. James as things changed for our team, became a little bit easier for James, when they’re playing together it’s hard to tell them if you all give up a little bit, it will be easier for each of you.But they all want theirs and their piece of the action and their piece of the pie. You can’t play basketball that way. It’s a team sport.As we all became our brother’s keeper, and we started sharing the ball, creating good shots, it became easier for James, he took off, went to another level.But excuse me, he can guard and rebound and he’s got length. We’re trying to get him to go to the basket a little bit more. Obviously he can really shoot it.But he’s a big part of this.

Q. You talked about some of the things that your kids had to hear, do you think that gives them motivation right now, and also, too, how much of an unfair comparison is it for any freshman now at Kentucky considering what your group did two years ago?

COACH CALIPARI: You mean with Anthony and the National Championship team? I just said in the hallway it’s not the same because you had Darius Miller, Terrence Jones and Doron Lamb and Eloy Vargas went to the Final Four the year before. So they could talk to those freshmen.Our freshmen, it is all on them. When Anthony Davis went 1 for 10 in the Championship game, at halftime he said, Guys, I can’t make a shot. All I’m going to do is rebound and block shots, you guys do all the scoring. This is on these kids.I mean, there’s no, Okay, you do it, I’m going to have a tough day. So it’s a different deal.But I will tell you that I’m really proud of what they’ve been able to do, that they’ve grown a ton. They’ve come together as a team at the right time.But this is a different deal. This is, all records, their record, our record against each other, their conference, none of it matters in this game. This is a onegame shot. Get out there and have more fun and play, do what you do.

Q. Coach, over to your left, Coach Cal, I know for all teams it’s important to try to keep the outside noise to a minimum in the locker room. Obviously in this day and age, fans can get on there in an instant with Twitter. Is there a way you try to shield your guys from hearing some of these harsh comments, what’s your policy as far as that goes?

COACH CALIPARI: It’s hard, because I say to everybody, obviously Twitter and social media is not going away. All you people that say I’ll never do it, okay, you’re like the only one in the universe. It’s not going anywhere.But how you deal with it, I never see anything. My job is to get information out, to pick people up, to let the Big Blue Nation know how I’m feeling, to do things, prayers, other things to get out information, and I see nothing coming back.But our people say, Yeah, you’ve got filters, you’ve got five of us that look at all your stuff so you don’t have to deal with it.As a player there’s stuff coming back that they may look at. I tell them, Don’t look at it.This week what I told them: Don’t watch any TV. Watch the History Channel, watch Biography, watch the Military channel, watch movies and don’t read anything, don’t look at anything.It has no bearing on this game we’re about to play. Let’s just focus on that.But it’s hard for these guys. If you and I were 18 and people are throwing stones at you, you’re going to see it, catch it.But they’re doing a good job. It’s not tainted them. They’re not mean and nasty, they’re not that way. They’re a bunch of good kids that got rattled. They got rattled. But they stayed together and they stayed strong. It shows a lot about their character.

Q. Coach, get a lot of questions about the oneanddone kids, but how about a guy like Jon Hood who has been around as long as you have?

COACH CALIPARI: He’s as old as I am, you’re right.

Q. How helpful has he been when you get a lot of turnover on your roster you have some stability there, is he like another coach? What has he brought to the team?

COACH CALIPARI: He’s been I can’t begin to tell you how much he’s grown. From a young man that felt overwhelmed think about it, he played against 17 NBA players in his time. 17. And they tried to kill him.He had to go against them. It’s not like he was sitting on the side. He was playing against John Wall and Bledsoe. And we tell stories, I said, Jon, am I lying?Like I tell these guys a story about how they were. Jon, is that? Yes.But the second thing I want to tell you, he went from overwhelmed to a little angry to one of the greatest kids I’ve ever coached, that understands, is playing with joy, which is what we try to teach.You can’t have the weight of the world on you. That when he goes in he’s not afraid to play. And he says, The light went on, Coach. He said, I went from hating every one of you, including you, to now understanding and I love every bit of this.He would make a great coach if that’s what he chooses. Right now he’s coaching. I can’t remember what game it was. We were playing against a zone and he looked at me and comes down, says, Coach, the lob is there. So the next time out I said, The lob is there. We throw the lob, dunk, and I went down and high fived him.
So he graduated. He’s working on postgraduate stuff. He’s got people lined up to give him jobs if that’s what he chooses to do. But that’s what you want.That’s why I wish I had guys four to five years. But it’s not my rule. It’s not my rule. It’s not what I want. But I’m not going to hold a kid back. Just like Jon Hood, I want to do right by him. I want to do right by John Wall, and Anthony Davis, you want to do right by those kids.

Q. How would you characterize your relationship with Rick and where do you think the perception comes that it’s sometimes a little bit cold?

COACH CALIPARI: I would say we’re friends. I mean, he and I have we were in touch throughout the year back and forth. He’d throw something at me, I’d throw something at him. Different things about our teams.But, one, we’re getting older, both of us, and I think I’m not on his mind and he’s not on my mind, so to speak. We all got tough jobs, what we’re doing.I know that he’s a great coach. He’s done it at different programs. His kids play with great energy and they play with confidence, and it’s every year.And so the stuff about they’re at each other’s throats, it’s just not accurate.
I’d be stunned if he thinks of me in a week, like my both of us have tough jobs that we have to be engulfed in what we do.

Sterling: Louisville Will Win Because God Will Not Reward John Calipari

Kent Sterling says Louisville will defeat Kentucky tonight but not because they are the better team.

"Louisville's gonna win and it's not going to be because they're the better team," Sterling says. "It's going to be because God will not reward John Calipari and the Kentucky Wildcats for the way they do business. God just won't let that happen. It's going to be Louisville because morality demands it."


Thursday, March 27, 2014

Churchill Downs Twin Spires Turned Red and Blue for Kentucky vs. Louisville

Churchill Downs is getting into the March Madness spirit tonight.

The famous racetrack has turned its twin spires into red and blue in honor of tomorrow night's Kentucky vs. Louisville game.

ChurchillDowns The game 24 hours away @ChurchillDowns' #TwinSpires: 1 blue for UK, 1 red for UL pic.twitter.com/woX8mtwmu6

Glenn Cosey, J.J. Mann on Lou Henson All-America Team

Eastern Kentucky's Glenn Cosey and Belmont's J.J. Mann have been named to the 2014 Lou Henson All-America Team.

The Lou Henson Award is given annually by CollegeInsider.com to the top Mid-Major player in college basketball.

Release from CollegeInsider.com:

BOSTON, MA -- The finalists for the 2014 Lou Henson award were announced on Thursday.

"This is without question the best group of finalists we have ever had," said CollegeInsider.com's Angela Lento. "Selecting the player of the year from this group will not be easy."

The list of finalists also comprise the 2013-14 Lou Henson All-America team.

Previous recipients of the award include Matthew Dellavedova (Saint Mary's 2013), Kyle O'Quinn (Norfolk State 2012), Matt Howard (Butler 2011) and Keith Benson (Oakland 2010).

The Lou Henson Award is presented annually to the top Mid-Major player in Division I college basketball. The award is named in honor of Lou Henson who retired after a spectacular coaching career that lasted 41 years.

Complete Release

2014 LOU HENSON ALL-AMERICA TEAM
Ike Azotam6-7Sr.Quinnipiac
Travis Bader6-5Sr.Oakland
George Beamon6-4Sr.Manhattan
Taylor Braun6-7Sr.North Dakota State
Alec Brown7-1Sr.Green Bay
David Brown6-3Sr.Western Michigan
Julius Brown5-10Jr.Toledo
Glenn Cosey6-0Sr.Eastern Kentucky
Torrey Craig6-6Sr.USC Upstate
Langston Hall6-4Sr.Mercer
Tyler Haws6-5Jr.BYU
Troy Huff6-5Sr.North Dakota
R.J. Hunter6-5So.Georgia State
Jeremy Ingram6-3Sr.North Carolina Central
Kareem Jamar6-5Sr.Montana
J.J. Mann6-6Sr.Belmont
Z. Mason6-6Sr.Chattanooga
Javon McCrea6-7Sr.Buffalo
Aaric Murray6-0Sr.Texas Southern
Jake Odum6-4Sr.Indiana State
Jacob Parker6-6Jr.Stephen F. Austin
Elfrid Payton6-3Jr.Louisiana Lafayette
Devon Saddler6-2Sr.Delaware
Wesley Saunders6-5Jr.Harvard
Justin Sears6-8So.Yale
Kiefer Sykes5-11Jr.Green Bay
Jameel Warney6-8So.Stony Brook
Jalan West5-10So.Northwestern State
Alan Williams6-8Jr.UC Santa Barbara
Pendarvis Williams6-6Sr.Norfolk State

University of Kentucky Grad Frank Vogel: "Go Cards"

It sounds University of Kentucky graduate Frank Vogel is now cheering for the Louisville Cardinals.

Vogel, who currently coaches the Indiana Pacers, told a reporter "Go Cards" today.


John Calipari on Rick Pitino: I would say we are friends

John Calipari says he would say Louisville head coach Rick Pitino is a friend.

Calipari says he and Pitino were in touch throughout the year to discuss "different things about our teams."

TheOnlySweeney Calipari on Rick...."I would say we're friends. We were in touch throughout the year...different things about our teams."

KyleTucker_CJ Cal on Pitino: "The stuff that they're at each other's throats, it's just not accurate."

GoodmanESPN Maybe these guys don't really dislike one another -- pic.twitter.com/Wnz51Zfali

Manhattan College Places Steve Masiello on Leave

Manhattan College has placed head coach Steve Masiello on leave while he is in the process of reviewing his degree status at the University of Kentucky.

Masiello was set to leave Manhattan for a new job at South Florida, but a search firm discovered that he did not complete his college degree at UK. South Florida terminated the offer, leaving Masiello in limbo at Manhattan.

Here is a release from MC:

RIVERDALE, NY - As a result of a background check commissioned by the University of South Florida, Manhattan College has learned there is a question of the validity of head men’s basketball coach Steve Masiello’s undergraduate degree from the University of Kentucky. 
 
Masiello is currently in the process of reviewing his degree status with the University of Kentucky. Manhattan College has placed Masiello on leave while he completes this process with the University.
 
Masiello was named Manhattan College’s head men’s basketball coach in April 2011. Prior to that, he was an assistant coach at the University of Louisville from 2005-11. Masiello was an assistant coach at Manhattan College from 2001-05 and began his coaching career at Tulane University in 2000-01. He played four years of basketball at Kentucky from 1996-2000.
 
We ask all parties to respect the privacy of our student athletes until this matter is resolved.
 
Manhattan College will issue further comment as soon as this expedited process is complete.


Complete Release

Randolph Morris Destroys a Defender in China, Closing in on Another CBA Title

Former Kentucky big man Randolph Morris and the Beijing Ducks are one win away from another CBA championship in China.

Morris and ex-NBA star Stephon Marbury have been on fire in the playoffs for Beijing.

In game 4, Morris put in 25 points and 8 rebounds in Beijing's 94-88 win over Xinjiang. Marbury finished with 23 points, 5 boards and 8 assists.

Check out this dunk by Morris in game 4 that left a defender covered in blood:


Terrence Jones Isn't Worried About Louisville, Calls Them Wichita State's B Team

Former Kentucky star Terrence Jones isn't worried about the Louisville Cardinals.

Check out his comments via Chron.com:

“What school is that?” Jones said. “I haven’t heard of that school. I know we’re going to win because I don’t even know that school. I think we play Wichita State’s B team or something. We’re going to make sure we get that done.”

Source

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Wikipedia: Tim Cowlishaw is a Devoted Kentucky Fan

It looks like Tim Cowlishaw's Wikipedia page has been updated a little tonight. Apparently, he is now a "devoted Kentucky fan":

Tim Cowlishaw Hammers University of Kentucky Graduates on ESPN

The panel on Around The Horn was discussing the Steve Masiello situation this evening on ESPN.

During that conversation, Tim Cowlishaw took a jab at University of Kentucky students and graduates.

Take a listen (he can be reached on Twitter at @TimCowlishaw):


KSTV Previews Louisville vs. Kentucky

KSTV previews Friday night's NCAA Tournament game between Kentucky and Louisville:


Mason County's Shawn Johnson Signs with Campbellsville University

Mason County forward Shawn Johnson has signed with Campbellsville University for next season.

CUTigerHoops Excited to have Shawn Johnson join our bball family. pic.twitter.com/0Cw4bCudnn

More Than 40,000 Fans to Watch Friday Night's NCAA Tournament Session in Indianapolis

According to a UK press release, more than 40,000 fans will watch Friday night's session of the NCAA Tournament in Indianapolis.

Here is the release:

Indianapolis – All general public tickets for Friday night’s NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship Midwest Regional Semifinals session have been sold. A very limited number of official NCAA-sanctioned ticket and hospitality packages are still available by visiting NCAA.com/VIP or calling 800/591-9198. Hospitality packages include pregame and in-game hospitality.

A crowd of more than 40,000 will fill the Lucas Oil Stadium stands Friday night. Fans may also still purchase tickets for the Sunday, March 30 Midwest Regional final at NCAA.com/MBBTickets.

The Midwest Regional, hosted by the Horizon League and IUPUI with local operations managed by Indiana Sports Corp, will feature four teams and three games over two days of competition. Two Midwest Regional semifinal games will be played on Friday, March 28, with Tennessee vs. Michigan tipping off at 7:15 p.m. followed by Kentucky vs. Louisville 30 minutes following the conclusion of the first game. The two winners advance to the Midwest Regional final on Sunday, March 30. Sunday's game time will be determined following Friday's games. The Midwest Regional champion will advance to the NCAA Men's Final Four, April 5 and 7 at AT&T Stadium in North Texas.

For those fans unsuccessful in acquiring tickets, the NCAA will conduct an open practice day, showcasing all four teams at Lucas Oil Stadium, on Thursday, March 27 beginning at Noon. There is no cost to attend open practice day.

Noon-12:50 p.m. - Tennessee
1-1:50 p.m. - Kentucky
2:10-3 p.m. - Michigan
3:10-4 p.m. - Louisville

Lucas Oil Stadium ticket office hours are Monday through Thursday 9 a.m.-5 p.m., and the ticket office will open Friday at 9 a.m. Due to the large crowds, fans are encouraged to arrive at Lucas Oil Stadium early to get through security lines. It is recommended that fans with tickets at Lucas Oil Stadium Will Call pick them up on Wednesday or Thursday, or earlier in the day on Friday.

The NCAA reminds fans that purchasing tickets from secondary unauthorized vendors may result in fraudulent purchases. Fans are encouraged to purchase tickets from NCAA member institutions and companies authorized by the NCAA to sell or resell championship tickets. Information on official NCAA fan to fan tickets can be found at NCAA.com/Exchange.

Murray State to Host Towson in CIT Tournament Quarterfinals

Murray State will host Towson Thursday night in the quarterfinal round of the CIT Tournament.

CIT Schedule

All times Central Time

Wednesday, March 26

Yale (17-13) @ Columbia (21-12) 6:00 pm
VMI (21-12) @ Ohio (25-11) 6:00 pm
San Diego (18-16) @ Pacific (17-15) 9:00 pm

Thursday, March 27

Towson (25-10) @ Murray State (20-11) 7:00 pm

NOTES: The Racers have won back-to-back games in the CIT to reach the quarterfinals. MSU won at Missouri State (March 19) 66-63 and came home today to handle Omaha. MSU now faces Towson (25-10) who has also won two games with a 63-60 win at USC Upstate (March 19) and an 83-77 win at East Tennessee (March 21). Towson hails from the Colonial Athletic Association where they were 13-3 in league play and finished second. Towson made it to the CAA Tournament semifinals where they lost to William & Mary 75-71.  The Racers are 1-1 all-time against Towson with a home win in 1979 and a road loss in 1981.

Georgia Men's Basketball Policy: One Girlfriend, No Hicky's and No Group Sex

Georgia has some interesting policies regarding girlfriends and other activities in their men's basketball team policy manual.

DanWolken  As well-intended as this might be, I imagine it won’t help Georgia’s basketball recruiting very much http://tracking.si.com/2014/03/25/georgia-mens-basketball-team-policy-one-not-two-or-three-girlfriends/

Among the policies detailed:
- You don’t own your girlfriend.
- Birth control is your responsibility too.
- Never assault or intimidate a woman.
- Don’t spend all of your energy in the bed all night
- Hicky’s/passion marks should not be ever noticed by coaches
- One. Not two or three girlfriends.

There's more but they are a little too detailed to post publicly here. If you are brave enough, you can see the official policy sheet here.

Report: USF Search Could Now Focus on Tyndall, Antigua and Pelphrey

According to a report in the Tampa Bay Times, South Florida will now focus on Donnie Tyndall, Orlando Antigua and John Pelphrey in their coaching search.

USF had hired Manhattan head coach Steve Masiello but the deal fell through when an error was discovered in his resume.

Tyndall just led Southern Miss to a 29-7 season that ended in the quarterfinals of the NIT. The 29 wins are a Southern Miss record. Tyndall has been a proven winner at each stop during his coaching career.

Antigua is one of John Calipari's assistants at Kentucky. He is widely regarded as one of the top assistants in college basketball and has built a reputation as a top-notch recruiter.

Pelphrey is currently serving at Billy Donovan's assistant at Florida. He has previous head coaching experience at Arkansas and South Alabama.

Here is more from TampaBay.com:

USF athletic department spokesman Brian Siegrist confirmed early Wednesday morning the search process is ongoing. New Bulls athletic director Mark Harlan did not immediately respond to a phone message.

"If it's accurate I'm shocked by it," Louisville coach Rick Pitino told ESPN's Jeff Goodman. Masiello walked on for Pitino at Kentucky in 1996 and later spent six years on Pitino's UL staff.

"I left (Kentucky) the previous year and he was on track to graduate."

The renewed search now could shift to Kentucky assistant Orlando Antigua, Louisiana Tech coach Mike white, Florida assistant John Pelphrey or Southern Miss coach Donnie Tyndall.

Complete Article

Jeff Goodman of ESPN.com reports that USF also talked to Mercer's Bob Hoffman previously:

GoodmanESPN South Florida also talked to Mercer's Bob Hoffman before offering job to Steve Masiello, sources told ESPN.

Campus Insiders Previews Kentucky vs. Louisville

Campus Insiders previews Friday night's NCAA Tournament battle between Kentucky and Louisville:

Russ Smith, Julius Randle Named to NABC All-America Teams

The National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) just released their All-American teams for the 2013-14 season.

Louisville's Russ Smith is on the Second Team and Kentucky's Julius Randle is on the Third Team.

Release from the NABC

Here's a look:

USF Killed Masiello Deal Because of False Information on Resume

According to Brett McMurphy of ESPN, South Florida pulled Steve Masiello's job offer because he did not graduate from the University of Kentucky as indicated on his resume:

South Florida Breaks Off Masiello Deal Due to Red Flag in Background Check

South Florida has broken off their deal with Steve Masiello due to a red flag discovered during a background check.

Masiello had been offered and accepted a deal to become South Florida's new head coach.

With Masiello out of the picture, USF will now look at other candidates including former Kentucky star John Pelphrey.

Here is more from TampaTribune.com:

The University of South Florida’s search for a new men’s basketball coach hit a major snag late Tuesday night when USF learned that the man it was set to hire, Manhattan College coach Steve Masiello, had a previously undetected discrepancy in his background check, a source close to the coaching search told The Tampa Tribune.

USF was forced to kill the deal with Masiello.

That background-check information was discovered by Eastman & Beaudine, a Texas-based search firm that was paid $60,000 by USF to find candidates to replace Stan Heath, who was fired on March 14.

Masiello, 36, had agreed to a five-year contract with USF and signed the deal, believed to be worth more than $1 million per season, leaving only final details to be worked out.

The search is back on, and USF must turn to other candidates. Possibilities include University of Florida assistant coach John Pelphrey or Louisiana Tech head coach Mike White, whose team faces Florida State tonight for a spot in the National Invitation Tournament final four in New York.

Complete Article

According to ESPN.com, it's not clear if Masiello will be eligible to return to his position at Manhattan.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Mitch McConnell Responds with Press Release

The Mitch McConnell campaign has put out the following press release:

Earlier today, issues related to the use of NCAA images in a web video created by an outside vendor for our campaign were brought to our attention.

The video was taken down immediately after questions were raised. Since that time, we have received correspondence from the University of Kentucky, we have spoken with them, and the matter has been resolved.

To be clear, neither the University of Kentucky, the University of Louisville nor any student-athlete was aware of any image used in this video, and actions have been taken with the vendor to ensure this never happens again.

We have also reached out to the University of Louisville to make sure they are aware of the situation and offered our full cooperation to clear up any misunderstanding.

It was our intention to honor our great Kentucky basketball traditions. Our campaign apologizes for any inconvenience this may have caused.

University of Kentucky Issues Cease and Desist Letter to Mitch McConnell

The University of Kentucky has issued a cease and desist letter to Mitch McConnell for the improper use of Julius Randle's image in a campaign commercial.

The McConnell campaign first mistakenly inserted footage of the Duke Blue Devils into the commercial that was celebrating UK. They edited the video and replaced the Duke footage with Randle footage.

UK sent out the following release tonight:

UK Athletics statement regarding UK men's basketball student-athlete Julius Randle...

The University of Kentucky consulted with the NCAA earlier today regarding footage of Julius Randle in a Mitch McConnell advertisement. Although the use of the student-athlete’s image in the advertisement is not permissible, because it was done without the knowledge or permission of the university or the student-athlete, it is not an NCAA violation. The University of Kentucky has sent a cease and desist letter and will continue to take appropriate measures to ensure improper usage of a student-athlete’s name, image or likeness is prevented.

2015 Star Luke Kennard Commits to Duke

Luke Kennard, one of the top players in the Class of 2015, has decided to play his college basketball at Duke University.

Kennard picked Duke over Kentucky, Louisville, Michigan and North Carolina.


Louisville Favored by 5.5 Points Over Kentucky Friday Night

The Louisville Cardinals are currently favored by 5.5 points over Kentucky in Friday night's game in Indianapolis.

Skip Bayless disagrees:

RealSkipBayless · Louisville favored by 5 over Kentucky. Should be other way around.

ToddFuhrman #Louisville taking some money in the late morning offshore. Consensus line against Kentucky from -5 out to -5.5 right now

Mitch McConnell's Team Mistakes Duke for Kentucky

There are mistakes. Then, there is mistaking the Duke Blue Devils for the Kentucky Wildcats.

Amazingly, that's exactly what happened to the Mitch McConnell campaign team. The McConnell team put out a commercial to celebrate the Kentucky Wildcats dominance in college basketball but somehow ran footage of the 2010 Duke national championship team.

The mistake is a brief one but the Big Blue Nation is not very forgiving when Duke is involved.

Here is the video (1:09 mark):



The McConnell team has pulled the ad and apologized:

The McConnell campaign quickly yanked the ad and spokeswoman Allison Moore apologized for the error.

"The ad was intended to highlight Kentucky's basketball dominance and obviously the web ad vendor has become so accustomed to watching national championship celebrations in the bluegrass state that they made a mistake with one of the images," she says. "Obviously we were horrified by the error and quickly changed it."

Other McConnell aides tell WFPL they "bungled" the situation and that it was a "stupid mistake" that the campaign fully expects to take criticism over.

Read More

Likely Democratic nominee Alison Lundergan Grimes poked some jabs at McConnell on Twitter:



Mike and Mike Picks a Bad Week to Make This Rick Pitino Mistake

The Mike and Mike Show picked a bad week to call Rick Pitino the head coach of Kentucky.

The Wildcats and Pitino's Louisville Cardinals will square off Friday night in a heavyweight Sweet 16 battle.

Mike and Mike's verified account posted this yesterday morning:

MikeAndMike @SethOnHoops reminded us that @KentuckyMBB coach Rick Pitino has never lost a Sweet 16 game. Ever. pic.twitter.com/qgQScD7yvs

Obviously, the Tweet was met with a barrage of replies and was eventually deleted and replaced:

MikeAndMike @SethOnHoops reminded us that @GoCards coach Rick Pitino has never lost a Sweet 16 game. Ever. pic.twitter.com/OiPpk940oc

Here's the original Tweet (screenshot source):

Adam Zagoria Says Montrezl Harrell Will Enter NBA Draft

According to Adam Zagoria, Louisville's Montrezl Harrell will enter the NBA Draft after this season.

AdamZagoria Along w/ LaQuinton Ross, hearing Montrezl Harrell, Rodney Hood and Juwan Staten will all declare for the Draft.

Harrell is averaging 11 points, 12 rebounds and 2.5 blocks per game for the Cardinals this season as a sophomore.

Murray State Advances to Quarterfinals of CIT Tournament

Murray State 86
Omaha 62

Final from Murray, Kentucky

Game recap by MSU:

The Murray State Racers won their second game in the 2014 CollegeInsider.com Tournament with an 86-62 win over the Omaha Mavericks at the CFSB Center in Murray, Ky.

Playing their first home non-Ohio Valley Conference post-season game since 1983, the Racers advanced to the CIT quarterfinals where they'll host the Towson Tigers Thursday at 7 p.m.

The Racers (20-11) also secured the program's fifth-straight 20-win season, the best in 89 seasons of Murray State hoops.

Jeffery Moss led five Racers in double-figure scoring with 17 points, while Jonathan Fairell added a double-double with 14 points and 13 rebounds. Jarvis Williams scored 14 points and had five blocked shots. Cameron Payne added 15 points and dished out six assists. T.J. Sapp returned to the MSU line up and scored 10 points.

In the first half, the Racers trailed early by seven points, but tied the game with a 13-4 run. Payne hit the Racers' first 3-point basket of the game with 15:53 left and Williams slammed on a fast break with 13:15 remaining to make it a 15-15 game. MSU finished the half on a 12-2 run that was capped when Williams got one of his five blocked shots of the game, which led to a layup at the buzzer by C.J. Ford. MSU led at the half 47-34.

In the second half, UNO got as close as 11 points when they scored the first basket of the half, before the Racers took an 18-point lead on Moss' floater for a 60-42 score with 12:44 remaining.

MSU's only senior Dexter Fields hit 3-pointers with 4:39 left to put him over the 500-point mark for his two-year MSU career. The second three put MSU up 78-56.

The Racers won the battle of the boards 46-35 and held the Mavs to 37 percent shooting for the game including 33 percent in the second half. UNO was also 6-of-27 from long range.

MSU took advantage of 14 UNO turnovers by turning them into 24 points.

Complete Recap


Steve Masiello Expected to Take Over at South Florida

Former Kentucky player and Louisville assistant Steve Masiello is expected to accept an offer to become the head coach at South Florida this week.

Masiello just completed a successful season at Manhattan and almost pulled off a stunning upset of Louisville in the NCAA tournament.

Source

UPDATE:

Sounds like it's a done deal...

mcquad BREAKING: Steve Masiello just met with his team to tell them he officially accepted offer to USF, sources say.

mcquad Steve Masiello was offered the USF job last night for 5 years, $6.2 million, according to @USFCollin .

Walter McCarty in the Mix for Boston College Job

Former University of Kentucky big man Walter McCarty is on the list of candidates for the head coaching job at Boston College.

McCarty acknowledged his interest in an interview with the Boston Herald:

The list of candidates for the head basketball coach’s position at Boston College includes Walter McCarty, the Herald has learned.

And the Celtics assistant coach acknowledged yesterday he is intent on exploring the possibility.

“I’m very interested,” said McCarty, who spent 71⁄2 years as a player for the Celts. “I want to be highly considered. I love the city. I have great ties in the city. I have a great foundation here, especially with recruiting.

“If you look at Louisville’s 2013 national championship team, four of those five starters were my guys. So I’m very confident in my ability to coach and lead a program. I think that I’m ready.”

Complete Article

Vic Moses is Dominating the British Basketball League, Goes for 50 Points and 20 Boards

Former Georgetown College big man Vic Moses is dominating the British Basketball League this season.

Moses leads the league in both points (24.5) and rebounds (14.0). He is also among the league's best in blocks (1.0) and field goal percentage (63.0%).

Eurobasket.com named Moses BBL Player of the Week for the past week after he put in 50 points and 20 rebounds in a win over Plymouth.

Here is more from Eurobasket.com:

American Victor Moses (198-F-89, agency: Three Eye Sports) had an amazing evening in the last round for Cheshire P. and that's him to receive a Eurobasket.com Player of the Week award for round 26.

The 24-year old forward had a double-double of 50 points and twenty rebounds, while his team beat Plymouth R. (#8, 12-15) 94-82. Cheshire P. maintains the 6th position in British BBL. They would have been even better if they hadn't lost a few games earlier this season. Cheshire P. will need more victories to improve their 14-11 record. In the team's last game Moses had a remarkable 64.3% from 2-point range. He turned to be Cheshire P.'s top player in his first season with the team. Georgetown College graduate has very impressive stats this year. Moses is league's best scorer averaging so far 24.7ppg and leads league in rebounds with 14.2rpg. Moses is in league's top in and averages solid 1.1bpg and 63.0% FGP

Read More

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