By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©November 16th, 2019 @ 5:08pm
After 30 minutes of play, your University of Kentucky Wildcats lead the Vanderbilt Commodores 24-14.
In what has to be the stat of the game so far, Kentucky has 279 yards rushing on 32 carries. Kavoisiey Smoke and Chris Rodriguez both have touchdown runs from 3 and 22 yards out respectively, while Josh Ali caught a tipped Lynn Bowden pass in the end zone to put Kentucky up by ten with 11 seconds left. Vanderbilt ran all over the Cats early in the first quarter, but Kentucky’s defense has clamped down, holding the ‘Dores to only 66 yards rushing and 18 yards passing.
More of this in the second half, please.
By Jack Pilgrim on ©November 16th, 2019 @ 3:15pm
2020 five-star power forward Isaiah Jackson announced his commitment to Kentucky this afternoon, choosing the Wildcats over Alabama and Syracuse, among 22 total scholarship offers.
After announcing his decision at a commitment ceremony at his high school, Jackson has released his official commitment video on social media.
“Pontiac, Michigan, a place where not many people make it out of,” Jackson said in the announcement. “This is the place where I first picked up a basketball. This is the place where I spent countless hours in the rain, snow, and heat putting in work. I want to thank God for giving me the God-given ability, my family for being there for me through the highs and the lows, my coaches and teammates helping me become the player I am today.
“As I continue my basketball career, I’m happy to announce in 2020 I will be attending the University of Kentucky. Go Wildcats.”
Here was the commitment video:
By Nick Roush on ©November 16th, 2019 @ 3:05pm
You people are crazy.
As Mark Stoops said, Kentucky fans love Nashville. There were plenty of Wildcat fans ready to greet the team as they arrived at Vanderbilt Stadium Saturday afternoon.
By Jack Pilgrim on ©November 16th, 2019 @ 2:55pm
2020 five-star forward Isaiah Jackson is officially a Wildcat, picking Kentucky over Alabama and Syracuse this afternoon during an announcement ceremony at his school.
But what do we need to know about the newest Kentucky commitment and signee?
Jackson’s head coach at Waterford Mott High School, David McGlown, spoke with KSR to break down the five-star forward’s game and why Kentucky fans should be so excited about the latest get for John Calipari and his staff.
JP: How would you describe Isaiah’s personality and approach to the game of basketball?
DM: “Isaiah is one of those, I don’t know how you’d describe it, like an introvert I guess. He’s very guarded, but he’s very humble. People come up to him and ask for autographs and different things, he always does it. He’s so humble, very quiet. If you haven’t been around him or know him too well, he doesn’t really talk, just a ‘yes sir’, ‘no sir’ type of kid. Once you get to know him, he’ll open up and he’s a very fun kid, funny, nice to be around. Just a humble kid. He came in our program humble, even when he first got there. To be the [caliber of] kid he is, he just started blending in right away. Just a humble, hard worker. Every time we have workouts, he’s doing double. He’ll do it with his trainer in the morning, then he’ll come do it with us in the afternoon.”
JP: As far as Isaiah as a player, everybody knows him as an athletic, pogo-stick kind of talent, blocks shots well. As his head coach, how would you describe his game.
DM: “Exactly what you said, he’s just a defensive-minded, unselfish player. He can actually do more things than people know. For me, he can bring the ball up, he makes the right pass, he can throw a no-look pass. He hasn’t been called upon to do some of those things at the other schools he’s been at, but at my school, I’m going to give him a little more freedom to open up his game. He can knock down jumpers, he can make the right pass, if he gets a rebound, he can take it coast-to-coast, he’s not a bad ball handler. Just an all-around player who loves to play defense. Loves to play the right way, he’s not a selfish kid just trying to “get his” and score 30 points a game. He just wants to make the right play and play the game the right way.
JP: How much as he grown from the time you first saw him to now?
DM: It was just a surprise to me to see all he can do, man. When I first heard about him and watched tape on him, it was all defense, he always deferred to other guys on his team like Rocket Watts and LaMelo Ball. But now, seeing him around our workouts, I was taken aback by the different things he could do like handling the ball and the passes he can make. He just makes the right plays. He doesn’t try to block every shot, he just goes after the shots he knows he can block. He just has a high basketball IQ, he’s a very smart player. He’s not going to take risks he shouldn’t take. I was just taken aback by all the different things he can do when he got here and I saw him in person.
JP: He’s listed officially at 6-foot-9, 200 pounds on the recruiting websites. Have you gotten an updated measurement on him? And do you see room for growth?
DM: We haven’t gotten updated height yet, but he has put on some good weight. He’s probably 210 pounds now. He still looks the same, but he has definitely added more muscle to him. He’s been in the weight room a lot.
JP: Alabama’s pitch was to be “the man,” and I believe Syracuse had a similar pitch. Kentucky’s situation is different, as he’s going to be asked to be a rim-running complementary piece to some of the primary scorers in Terrence Clarke and BJ Boston. How do you think he will thrive in that role?
DM: He could have fit in at any of the schools, to be honest with you. I mean, Syracuse runs that 2-3 zone, he would’ve been perfect for that. He’s long and athletic, those are the kind of kids he likes to recruit for that zone. Alabama wanted him to be the focal point. He’s an athletic kid, and that’s all you see under Nate Oats there. You see the same thing at Kentucky, the athletic kids. You see Anthony Davis, Karl-Anthony Towns, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, he’s in that mold of an athlete. He’s a kid who can get above the rim and just finish. At Kentucky, I can absolutely see him fitting in with those guards, with them setting him up for alley-oops, hitting him on rim-runs, screen and rolls, all of those things. With those type of guards, I don’t know them personally, but I’m sure they’re unselfish and can hit him on those type of plays. I think he’ll fit in great there.
JP: How much of a role did you play in his recruitment?
DM: I left most of it up to Isaiah and his dad, just gave him advice whenever he needed it. I told him to have fun with it, make his visits, take his time, and dot his I’s and cross his T’s when picking his school. I just told him to make sure it was the right fit for him and that he felt like it was a family around them. At the end of the day, you want it to be like a family. I just wanted him to go to a school where he felt he could grow as a person and as a basketball player.
JP: He’s floating right around 25 to 30 overall in the recruiting rankings, what do you see his ceiling being during and after his senior season?
DM: I can see him being a top-10 player by the end of the year once they see all the different things he can do on the offensive end of the court. Everyone only knows him as an elite defensive player right now, and he is that, but he’s more than that. Once they finally see that, I can see him being in the top-10 on all the different sites by the end of the year.
By Jack Pilgrim on ©November 16th, 2019 @ 2:51pm
KSR’s Jack Pilgrim is joined by Travis Graf of Cats Illustrated for a special edition of the Sources Say Podcast breaking down Isaiah Jackson’s commitment to Kentucky.
Some of the talking points:
- After weeks of silence Isaiah Jackson is a Kentucky Wildcat. How did it unfold?
- Short on numbers, Kentucky got a much-needed frontcourt commitment. Why was it so important
- What do fans need to know about Jackson’s game? Will he be an instant-impact player in Lexington?
- Jackson’s biggest strengths and weaknesses
- Where does Kentucky go from here in the frontcourt?
You can subscribe to the official Sources Say Podcast feed to get the show sent directly to your phone weekly on iTunes right here. Not on iTunes listener? You can also subscribe to the show on Spotify.
By Jack Pilgrim on ©November 16th, 2019 @ 2:50pm
This afternoon, 2020 five-star forward Isaiah Jackson announced his commitment to Kentucky, choosing the Wildcats over Alabama and Syracuse, among 22 total scholarship offers.
And during the announcement ceremony at his high school, Jackson also signed his letter of intent, making his addition to Kentucky’s 2020 signing class official.
Jackson, a 6-foot-9, 210-pound forward out of Pontiac, MI, is rated as the No. 26 prospect in the 2020 247Sports Composite rankings. ESPN has Jackson listed at No. 22 overall and fourth at the power position, with Rivals listing the five-star forward at No. 23 overall (No. 3 PF). To round out the major recruiting services, 247Sports has Jackson rated the lowest at No. 32 overall (No. 4 PF).
But what do we need to know about the newest Wildcat? And most importantly, what does his commitment mean for Kentucky?
Who is Isaiah Jackson?
A defensive-minded big man with elite athleticism and a relentless motor, Jackson is ranked as high as No. 22 in the nation and considered a consensus top-35 prospect for a reason.
This summer playing for The Family on the Nike EYBL circuit, Jackson averaged 11.0 points (53.2% shooting), 6.2 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 2.7 blocks, and 0.7 steals per contest during the regular season, and 10.6 points (55.3% shooting), 5.6 rebounds, 1.0 assists, 1.8 steals, and 1.2 blocks per game at Peach Jam.
Throughout the entire AAU season, Jackson managed at least two blocks in 10 total games and seven or more rebounds in eight total games. His best defensive performances came against Indy Heat (eight blocks) and BJ Boston’s AOT Running Rebels (seven blocks). He failed to register a block just three times in 18 total games.
As a junior at Spire Academy, Jackson also averaged 14.9 points, 10.4 rebounds, and a ridiculous 4.6 blocks per contest.
With phenomenal instincts, timing, and patience, Jackson – one of the best defensive bigs in all of high school basketball – projects as an elite shot blocker and rebounder at the college level. Offensively, the five-star forward was once seen as an incredibly raw prospect, but has since expanded his game to 12-15 feet with growing confidence as a shooter from the 3-point line (he took ten shots from deep on the AAU circuit this season).
Jackson’s head coach at Waterford Mott High School told KSR last week that they are comfortable with him bringing the ball up the floor in spot situations and kick-starting the fast break after a rebound or blocked shot. He will not be an offensive force at Kentucky – immediately, at least – but the potential and confidence is there.
In year one, Jackson will be asked to be a force on the defensive end of the floor and be a rim-running, clean-up specialist on offense, a strong complementary piece to Lance Ware and a few of Kentucky’s other recruiting targets in the frontcourt.
A Michigan native, schools such as Michigan and Michigan State were seen as the early favorites in Jackson’s recruitment, with the five-star forward taking three unofficial visits to Michigan in late 2017 and early 2018, and one unofficial to Michigan State in late 2017.
After briefly pulling ahead as the heavy favorite, momentum with Michigan State died out this summer, with Alabama, Kentucky, and Syracuse picking up momentum late in the summer and into the fall.
Alabama offered the five-star forward on July 21, 2019, followed by Kentucky scheduling an official visit to close out the month of August. Leaving the visit, Jackson confirmed he received an offer from John Calipari and the UK coaching staff. Two weeks later, Calipari took a trip up to Michigan to visit Jackson at his school.
The five-star forward took his official visit to Syracuse on September 27, naming his final three schools – Kentucky, Alabama, and Syracuse – just three days after the trip.
On October 3, Calipari took yet another trip to Michigan to see Jackson in person.
Jackson then took his official visit to Alabama on October 25, with silence surrounding his recruitment from that point forward.
Down the stretch, Kentucky and Alabama were seen as the co-favorites, though no one seemed to have a firm grip on who was on top.
On Saturday morning, though, Kentucky buzz began growing louder, with Crystal Ball picks and FutureCast predictions coming in in favor of the Wildcats.
And then on Saturday afternoon, Jackson made it official, choosing Kentucky and joining the school’s top-ranked 2020 recruiting class.
Kentucky makes it official
Not long after the commitment went public, the Kentucky basketball program was ready to let the world know that the signing was official.
On Twitter, Kentucky gave Jackson his introductory post, with former Wildcat big man Bam Adebayo officially welcoming him to the family.
— Kentucky Basketball (@KentuckyMBB) November 16, 2019
Rich get richer
When you woke up on Friday, Kentucky was sitting at No. 3 in the 2020 recruiting rankings behind both Duke and North Carolina.
Later in the morning, 2021 five-star guard and UK commitment Devin Askew reclassified to the class of 2020 and submitted his letter of intent, allowing the Wildcats to jump all the way up to the No. 1 spot in the rankings.
Today, Jackson announced his commitment to Kentucky, strengthening the program’s top-ranked recruiting class even further.
Now, Kentucky’s 2020 recruiting class consists of five-star guards Terrence Clarke, BJ Boston, and Devin Askew, five-star forward Isaiah Jackson, and four-star forwards Lance Ware and Cam’Ron Fletcher. For those keeping track at home, that is six consensus top-50 prospects, four consensus top-35 prospects, and two consensus top-15 prospects.
John Calipari has been an elite recruiter since he first set foot on campus at Kentucky, but he has never had a start to a recruiting class like this. In fact, the most players Kentucky has had signed by the early signing period during the Calipari era was four in 2011, when Anthony Davis, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Marquis Teague, and Kyle Wiltjer became Wildcats.
That team ended up being pretty solid, eh?
Kentucky secures a much-needed frontcourt commitment
No matter how the season plays out, Kentucky is expected to lose EJ Montgomery, Nick Richards, and Nate Sestina to the NBA Draft or graduation at the end of the season. Montgomery was on the cusp of leaving this past season, and Richards didn’t necessarily rush his decision, either. Next offseason will be no different.
Already short on numbers going into this season – Kentucky tried to add the likes of N’Faly Dante, Kerry Blackshear, and Jaden McDaniels this spring alone – the Wildcats will likely have to completely reload the frontcourt for 2020-21. If all three leave, they will need to replace them all, and then some.
With just one signee in the frontcourt going into the day – Lance Ware – the Wildcats were in desperate need of more quality big men. They certainly got one in the high-flying, defensive-minded forward out of Pontiac, MI.
But it doesn’t stop here. Kentucky will continue to recruit the likes of Greg Brown and Cliff Omoruyi in the class of 2020, Jonathan Kuminga and Paolo Banchero as reclassification candidates in 2021, and the transfer/graduate transfer market in hopes of securing at least two more signatures in the frontcourt.
The options are out there, but Jackson’s commitment means the staff doesn’t necessarily need to cast a huge net in the spring. With two guys now on board, they can take their time and (hopefully) reel in some top-notch talent in the frontcourt to complement the pieces already in place.
Welcome home, Mr. Jackson.
By Jack Pilgrim on ©November 16th, 2019 @ 2:46pm
Kentucky basketball’s top-ranked recruiting class for 2020 has grown even stronger.
This afternoon, 2020 five-star forward and consensus top-30 prospect Isaiah Jackson committed to Kentucky over Alabama and Syracuse, among other scholarship offers.
During his announcement ceremony, Jackson also signed his letter of intent, officially adding him to Kentucky’s signing class for 2020. He will join five-star guards Terrence Clarke, BJ Boston, and Devin Askew, along with four-star forwards Lance Ware and Cam’Ron Fletcher in Lexington.
Jackson, a 6-foot-9, 210-pound forward out of Waterford, MI, is rated as the No. 26 prospect in the 2020 247Sports Composite rankings. ESPN has Jackson listed at No. 22 overall and fourth at the power position, with Rivals listing the five-star forward at No. 23 overall (No. 3 PF). To round out the major recruiting services, 247Sports has Jackson rated the lowest at No. 32 overall (No. 4 PF).
The Waterford Mott High School product is considered one of the most athletic forwards in the nation that thrives on the defensive end of the floor and on the glass. With phenomenal instincts, timing, and patience, Jackson projects as an elite shot blocker at the college level. He also has a relentless motor, an attribute that should allow him to see immediate playing time in Lexington next season.
Once considered an incredibly raw offensive player, the five-star forward has expanded his game to 12-15 feet with growing confidence as a shooter from the 3-point line. Jackson’s high school head coach told KSR last week that they are comfortable with him bringing the ball up the floor in spot situations and kick-starting the fast break after a rebound or blocked shot. He will not be an offensive force – immediately, at least – but the potential and confidence is there.
In year one, Jackson will be asked to be a force on the defensive end of the floor and be a rim-running, clean-up specialist on offense, a strong complementary piece to Lance Ware and a few of Kentucky’s other recruiting targets in the frontcourt.
Check out some of the newest Wildcat’s most recent highlights below:
Welcome to the family, Mr. Jackson.
By Zack Geoghegan on ©November 16th, 2019 @ 2:15pm
The No. 13 Kentucky Wildcats (3-0) are in Charlottesville, VA today as they take on the Virginia Cavaliers (2-1) at 5 p.m. before they host seven straight home games back in Lexington.
This will be the second straight year that the Wildcats and Cavaliers face off. Kentucky won the first matchup back in Nov. 2018 at Rupp Arena, 63-51, and they’ll hope for a repeat performance later on Saturday.
Got comfortable with John Paul Jones Arena this morning.
Big game ?. pic.twitter.com/qVrQj1cNRX
— Kentucky WBB (@KentuckyWBB) November 16, 2019
Virginia’s game against Kentucky is the first of back-to-back games against ranked opponents as the Cavaliers travel to take on the No. 4 Connecticut Huskies this Tuesday.
The Cavaliers are led by senior forward Jocelyn Willoughby, who was recently named the ACC Women’s Basketball Player of the Week. In the season-opener against Bucknell, Willoughby dropped 31 points – the most by a female Cavalier since 2010 – while pulling in 11 rebounds for her 15th career double-double. Her next game against the USC Trojans resulted in a loss and a personal stat line of only 10 points and four rebounds, but it was enough to earn her player of the week honors.
Willoughby followed up her first two performances with 19 points and seven rebounds in a 72-47 win over CSUN to put the Cavaliers at 2-1. At an even 6-foot, Willoughby stretches the floor (she leads the team in three-point attempts and makes) and attacks the paint. She has a knack for getting to the free-throw line and is going to be the Wildcats’ biggest issue all game.
Virginia has four other players who average over nine points per game and all of them have started the season shooting over 42 percent from the field. The Cavaliers as a team shot 39.6 percent in their first win and 48.1 percent in the second win, however, USC held them to just 26 percent shooting in a 10-point loss.
Dominique Toussaint is the Cavaliers lead guard, averaging 4.5 assists in two games in addition to her 9.5 points. Freshman Kylie Kornegay-Lucas has been a huge help for Virginia off the bench, as the 5-foot-9 guard is tied for the team-high in rebounds with 22 rebounds through three games. 6-foot-3 senior Lisa Jablonowksi will be Kentucky’s main issue down low and KeKe McKinney’s biggest test thus far in the season. The center from Luxembourg is second on the team in scoring at 12 points per game to go along with over five boards per outing, as well.
The Cavaliers aren’t a wildly impressive scoring team and they rely heavily on working the ball around to manifest open shots. Kentucky has done a great job so far this season of forcing teams into turnovers and bad shot attempts. Against Virginia, the full-court press is going to be the difference-maker and it could go one of two ways.
One, the ‘Cats apply constant pressure, push Virginia out of its comfort zone and into rushed passing situations resulting in turnover after turnover. The second is that Virginia uses the press to its advantage, getting off quick passes and beating the press before it can even establish itself. I would expect the former to happen.
Kentucky is going to be quicker and stronger than Virginia. If they can start to knock down the open shots they’ve missed to start the season and give the full-court press a real chance to make its presence known, UK should return home with a 4-0 record.
The game will be broadcasted on ACCNX on the WatchESPN app.
By Brandon Ramsey on ©November 16th, 2019 @ 1:45pm
It’s GAMEDAY!!! As a whole, Big Blue Nation needs this game today. It has been a pretty tough last 7 days for Kentucky fans dealing with some brutal losses. Today is the day that turns around. Let’s just dive right in to the Commodores. As always, for a much more in-depth look, check out Adam Luckett’s Scouting Report.
1) Poor Offensive Production
- I really tried to make the headline as nice as possible, but the truth is Vanderbilt’s offensive is just bad. The proof is in the numbers. Vandy ranks outside the Top 100 in the nation in most major categories including scoring (106th), yards per play (121st), and third down efficiency (last). Even their rushing attack, which has been their lone bright spot, comes in last in the Southeastern Conference with just over 1000 total yards on the ground. Following their upset win over Missouri on October 19th, the Commodores have only mustered 7 points in the last two weeks combined at the hands of South Carolina and Florida. In those losses, Vanderbilt has thrown for a pitiful 76 and 77 yards respectively while using 3 different quarterbacks. If Kentucky can keep Ke’Shawn Vaughn from absolutely running all over the field, this is an offense that should really struggle to score this afternoon.
2) Ke’Shawn Vaughn is Really Good
- Speaking of Vaughn, he does deserve a shout out for what he has been able to accomplish for an otherwise inept offense. Despite Vandy having the fewest rushing yards in the SEC as a team, Vaughn is actually 4th in the conference in rushing with 818 yards on 166 carriers. He has also found the end zone 6 times. He will be a primary target when they pass the ball as well so expect to see a lot of him throughout the game. Without much of a threat through the air though, the Kentucky defense should be able to key on Vaughn and contain him enough to not let him keep the Commodores in the game single-handily.
3) Quarterback Questions
- I promise I don’t just copy and paste this week-to-week. As has been a theme for Kentucky opponents this season, we don’t know exactly what to expect from this position. Riley Neal, the Ball State grad transfer, is expected to start and he is the most reliable of the Commodore quarterbacks even though that isn’t a very high bar. Neal has started 7 games this season and completed 58.6% of his passes for just under 150 yards per game. He has thrown 6 touchdowns to 4 interceptions. Neal did not play at all last week against Florida though after suffering a leg injury following the opening drive against South Carolina (where Vandy actually scored). In his absence, Redshirt Junior Deuce Wallace and Redshirt Freshman Allan Waiters took all of the snaps against Florida and each threw an interception. If Neal is able to stay healthy and move the ball at all he will probably remain under center for the entire game, however don’t be surprised to see at least one other QB get some time this afternoon in Nashville.
4) Holes in the Defense
- Much like the offense, the Vanderbilt defense simply isn’t very good. Their scoring offense is ranked 106th in the country, but the defense is actually worse at 116th in terms of points given up. They are also 124th in passing defense and 116th in rush defense. As you would expect from a defense with those numbers, this unit hasn’t put any pressure on opposing offenses as seen by their 13 sacks and 9 forced turnovers on the season. Even if the Commodores stack the box to try and slow the running game as many UK opponents have done recently, they have shown that it will still be a struggle to contain Lynn Bowden and company on the ground.
5) Struggles Against a Running Quarterback
- After a tough football and basketball loss last week, Big Blue Nation is in desperate need of something to cheer for. One of the biggest bright spots going into this afternoon’s game is that Vanderbilt got demolished by Ole Miss on the ground, led by QB John Rhys Plumlee who ran for 165 yards. Vandy gave up a total of 413 rushing yards in that game including 9.4 yards per carry. There should be some opportunities for big plays today for the ‘Cats.
By Jack Pilgrim on ©November 16th, 2019 @ 1:30pm
As you prepare for Kentucky football’s matchup against Vanderbilt this afternoon, keep in mind that some UK basketball recruiting news is on the horizon.
At 2:30 p.m. ET – an hour from right now – 2020 five-star forward Isaiah Jackson is set to make his college decision, choosing between a final three of Kentucky, Alabama, and Syracuse.
After several weeks of silence surrounding his recruitment, Kentucky picked up significant buzz this morning, with Andrew Slater, Jerry Meyer, Chad Lykins, and Dylan Prezkop submitting four consecutive Crystal Ball picks for the Wildcats this morning. Over at Rivals.com, Corey Evans, Travis Graf, David Sisk, Eric Bossi, and Michael Langston have also submitted pro-Kentucky FutureCast predictions.
Ranked as high as No. 22 in the nation (Rivals), the Wildcats could be picking up a good one this afternoon…
By Zack Geoghegan on ©November 16th, 2019 @ 1:00pm
Good afternoon, folks. Malik Monk’s buzzer-beater warrants a Saturday post. Let’s talk NBA.
Monk’s three downs Pistons
- The story of the night was Malik Monk’s epic buzzer-beating triple to break a 106 tie and take down the Detroit Pistons. Monk caught an inbound pass from Cody Martin at the top of the key and shot a fadeaway three right before the clock expired.
Malik Monk for the WIN! ?
— theScore (@theScore) November 16, 2019
MALIK CALLED GAME?????? pic.twitter.com/0Y6FvAfXPa
— Charlotte Hornets (@hornets) November 16, 2019
- Monk finished the game with 19 points for the Hornets while shooting 8-12 from the field and 2-4 from deep. He also added four rebounds and an assist to his total. Are we witnessing the Monk Leap?
- Through 12 games this season, Monk is off to the best start of his three-year career. His numbers are up across the board and his field goal percentage has skyrocketed from a combined 37.6 percent his first two years to a blistering 51.1 percent (and that’s despite his three-point percentage dipping down to just 31.7 percent, a career-low). He’s taken several leaps as a passer – whipping cross-court one-handed dimes with ease and playing confidently out of the pick-and-roll with his partner. But the biggest difference for Monk this year is he’s attacking the rim like a bulldozer.
- In his first two seasons, Monk never attempted more than 25 percent of his shot attempts at the rim. This year that number has soared to 40 PERCENT. Even MORE impressive, he’s converting those shots at a 71 percent clip (ranking in the 90th percentile among wing players) compared to just 59 percent a season ago. [Stats via Cleaning the Glass]
- Monk’s first two seasons in Charlotte have been a notorious struggle – something he’s owned up to. But now, his hard work is paying off and his coach is letting him play through the growing pains.
- “Every game is getting better and better, too,” Monk said, according to The Charlotte Observer. “Hopefully, I’ll keep growing up from there. I’ve been working hard for these two, three years. I’ve been waiting for my moment.”
- We’ve been hyping up Monk throughout these BBNBA posts to start the season and now the rest of the world is finally learning just how much he’s improved.
SGA and OKC win in overtime
- The Oklahoma City Thunder won an overtime thriller against the Philadelphia 76ers thanks to Danilo Gallinari’s hot-shooting night of 28 points on only 11 shot attempts. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander posted 24 points, two rebounds, three assists, and two steals for OKC while shooting 9-19 from the field and 1-3 from deep. It was easily OKC’s best win of the young season and it moves them to 5-7 on the season.
- Nerlens Noel added six points and seven rebounds for the Thunder while Hamidou Diallo was sidelined with a minor knee sprain that has him currently listed as day-to-day.
KAT pops off for 36
- Karl-Anthony Towns led the BBNBA in scoring on Friday night, dropping 36 points on an efficient 13-18 shooting while hitting four of his six shots from deep. Towns also added 19 rebounds, three assists, and a block, but in a losing effort to the Washington Wizards, 137-116. Wizards guard Bradley Beal posted his second-straight 44 point game and his third overall game of the season with at least 40 points.
- KAT turned 24 on Friday, but his birthday was spoiled by second-half domination from the Wiz.
- P.J. Washington added 11 points and five rebounds for the Hornets, making all three of his attempts from deep.
- The Los Angeles Lakers held off the Sacramento Kings in a 99-97 win that saw Anthony Davis contribute 17 points and five rebounds. Wenyen Gabriel even got in on the action for Sacramento, but played only four minutes and was straight-up abused by LeBron James the entire time to the point where I felt bad for the former ‘Cat. Gabriel’s plus/minus was minus-11 in those four minutes.
- Check out the full stat sheet below.
|Karl-Anthony Towns (MIN)||116-137 L vs. WAS||36||13-18 (4-6)||19||3||0||1||7||-3||33|
|Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (OKC)||127-119 W vs. PHI (OT)||24||9-19 (1-3)||2||3||2||0||2||+1||40|
|Malik Monk (CHA)||109-106 W vs. DET||19||8-12 (2-4)||4||1||0||0||2||+23||21|
|Anthony Davis (LAL)||99-97 W vs. SAC||17||5-12 (0-3)||5||2||1||4||4||-5||35|
|P.J. Washington Jr. (CHA)||109-106 W vs. DET||11||4-7 (3-3)||5||1||1||1||1||-2||18|
|Willie Cauley-Stein (GSW)||100-105 L vs. BOS||10||5-6 (0-0)||8||2||1||1||1||+6||25|
|Trey Lyles (SAS)||109-111 L @ ORL||8||3-7 (2-4)||12||0||0||0||2||-11||27|
|Nerlens Noel (OKC)||127-119 W vs. PHI (OT)||6||2-3 (0-0)||7||1||2||0||4||-3||13|
|Enes Kanter (BOS)||105-100 W @ GSW||4||2-3 (0-0)||5||1||0||2||2||+10||14|
|Wenyen Gabriel (SAC)||97-99 L @ LAL||0||0-1 (0-1)||1||0||0||0||0||-11||4|
|Rajon Rondo (LAL)||99-97 W vs. SAC||0||0-3 (0-2)||3||4||1||0||2||-12||18|
|Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (CHA)||109-106 W vs. DET||DNP-CD||--||--||--||--||--||--||--||--|
|Hamidou Diallo (OKC)||127-119 W vs. PHI (OT)||DNP-Knee||--||--||--||--||--||--||--||--|
|De'Aaron Fox (SAC)||97-99 L @ LAL||DNP-Ankle||--||--||--||--||--||--||--||--|
|John Wall (WAS)||137-116 W @ MIN||DNP-Foot||--||--||--||--||--||--||--||--|
TONIGHT IN THE NBA
6:00 (NBATV): Nets @ Bulls
7:00: Bucks (Bledsoe) @ Pacers
7:30: Hornets (Kidd-Gilchrist, Monk, Washington) @ Knicks (Knox, Randle)
8:00: Pelicans (Miller-out) @ Heat (Adebayo, Herro)
8:00: Rockets @ Timberwolves (Towns)
8:30: Raptors @ Mavericks
8:30: Trail Blazers (Labissiere) @ Spurs (Lyles)
10:30: Hawks @ Clippers (Patterson)
By Nick Roush on ©November 16th, 2019 @ 12:00pm
Wesley Woodyard has been a team captain for almost his entire life. An experienced leader, he shared a message Mark Stoops’ team needed to hear before the final three games of the season.
After Kentucky ran through a practice at the Tennessee Titans’ indoor facility, the former UK linebacker told the Cats to visualize their goals. It was not some sort of vague imagery. Woodyard asked the players to picture themselves making the play that matters most in the fourth quarter. He also asked them to do it for their friend, Terry Wilson.
“I’m sorry you got hurt this year. You’re a baller,” Woodyard told Wilson. “Let’s ride for him.”
Watch what Woodyard had to say and try not to get fired up for some football. I dare you.
— Kentucky Football (@UKFootball) November 16, 2019
By Hayden Hooper on ©November 16th, 2019 @ 11:45am
Good morning Big Blue Nation! I hope everyone stays warm, it’s going to be cold! It still is a perfect day though to be in Nashville. It’s a big game and we all know Nashville is too nice at night. Especially after a win! If you stay home, here are today’s games for Week 12 of College Football.
|Noon||#5 Alabama||Mississippi State||ESPN|
|Noon||Indiana||#9 Penn State||ABC|
|Noon||Mighican State||#15 Michigan||FOX|
|Noon||Kansas||#22 Oklahoma State||FS1|
|Noon||Alabama State||Florida State||ACCNX|
|Noon||TCU||Texas Tech||ESPN 2|
|1:00 PM||UTEP||UAB||ESPN 3|
|2:30 PM||#23 Navy||#16 Notre Dame||NBC|
|3:00 PM||Idaho State||BYU||ESPN 3|
|3:00 PM||Troy||Texas State||ESPN 3|
|3:00 PM||Coastal Carolina||Arkansas State||ESPN PLUS|
|3:00 PM||ULM||Georgia Southern||ESPN PLUS|
|3:30 PM||#2 Ohio State||Rutgers||BTN|
|3:30 PM||Wake Forest||#3 Clemson||ABC|
|3:30 PM||#4 Georgia||#12 Auburn||CBS|
|3:30 PM||#18 Memphis||Houston||ESPN 2|
|3:30 PM||#19 Texas||Iowa State||FS1|
|3:30 PM||West Virginia||#24 Kansas State||ESPN|
|3:30 PM||Central Michigan||Ball State||CBSSN|
|3:30 PM||Virginia Tech||Georgia Tech||ACCNX|
|3:30 PM||Kentucky||Vanderbilt||SEC NETWORK|
|4:00 PM||#8 Minnesota||#20 Iowa||FOX|
|4:00 PM||UIW||New Mexico State||N/A|
|4:00 PM||Wyoming||Utah State||ESPN U|
|4:30 PM||Stanford||Washington State||PAC 12|
|4:30 PM||Rice||Middle Tennessee State||ESPN PLUS|
|5:00 PM||Louisiana||Southern Alabama||ESPN PLUS|
|6:00 PM||Southern Miss||UTSA||ESPN PLUS|
|7:00 PM||#1 LSU||Ole Miss||ESPN|
|7:00 PM||#17 Cincinnati||Southern Florida||CBSSN|
|7:00 PM||Air Force||Colorado State||ESPN 2|
|7:30 PM||#10 Oklahoma||#13 Baylor||ABC|
|7:30 PM||#25 Appalachian State||Georgia State||ESPN U|
|7:30 PM||South Carolina||Texas A&M||SEC NETWORK|
|7:30 PM||Louisville||NC State||ACCN|
|7:30 PM||Arizona State||Oregon State||FS1|
|8:00 PM||UCLA||#7 Utah||FOX|
|10:15 PM||New Mexico||#21 Boise State||ESPN 2|
|10:30 PM||Arizona||#6 Oregon||ESPN|
Everyone have a great weekend everyone! Go Cats!
By Nick Roush on ©November 16th, 2019 @ 11:30am
It’s never a good time to be in Starkville. Today it’s actually dangerous.
Before the Mississippi State Bulldogs host the Alabama Crimson Tide, officials at Davis Wade Stadium issued a warning to all patrons. Bats have been discovered at the venue and they are considered a “high risk for rabies.” There’s only one solution.
They call Starkville the armpit of the SEC for a reason.
By Nick Roush on ©November 16th, 2019 @ 11:00am
Before ESPN’s analysts reveal their picks on College GameDay, their producer picked Vanderbilt to cover against Kentucky.
Last week on Stanford Steve and The Bear, Scott Van Pelt’s producer picked Kentucky to take down Tennessee. Disgusted by the close loss, Stanford Steve believes he’ll get his money back with the Cats this week in Nashville.
“They should not have lost last week. That was brutal,” said Stanford Steve. “That was as bad as you can play. You’re up 13-3 and then you go down and lose the ball on downs late to win and over. Ugh.”
His counterpart, Chris “The Bear” Fallica, does not like this spot for Kentucky (-10).
“They shouldn’t have (lost), but their offense is terrible right now,” said Fallica. “Everyone is so down on Vandy. You lose at home to UNLV. Then the following week they beat Missouri. It could be a similar type thing this week. We’ll see.”
You can hear their entire discussion and more picks by listening to their podcast, Stanford Steve and The Bear. The Kentucky talk begins right around the 42:50-mark.
By Nick Roush on ©November 16th, 2019 @ 10:00am
Since Kentucky fell two yards short to Tennessee, it’s been a rough week for the Big Blue Nation. Mark Stoops’ football team has a chance to eliminate all of the bad vibes this afternoon against Vanderbilt.
Stoops has a 4-1 record vs. Derek Mason, but he’s only won once in Nashville, a 44-21 victory in 2017. It was the last time a Stoops team has scored more than 40 against an SEC opponent. Despite UK’s recent offensive struggles, that could happen this afternoon in Nashville.
Without a senior starter on Vandy’s defense, this will be the worst defensive line Kentucky has faced since Eastern Michigan. Vanderbilt ranks 103rd nationally in rush defense, surrendering 196.7 yards per game. The last time they faced a rushing quarterback, Ole Miss picked up 9.3 yards per carry for 413 total. Offensively, the Commodores aren’t much better. In fact, they’re historically bad, ranking near the bottom of the FBS in almost ever major statistical category.
Bye weeks helped the Cats shake off slow starts. If they can come out firing in the middle of an unenthusiastic atmosphere, it could be a fun day to be a Kentucky fan. Kickoff is set for 3:30 p.m. ET on the SEC Network.
— Kentucky Football (@UKFootball) November 15, 2019
Vandy’s QB is BACK
Like Tennessee (and most of the SEC East), the Vanderbilt Commodores have played a ton of quarterbacks this year, five to be exact. Today Derek Mason will be able to play his original starter. Ball State grad transfer Riley Neal was far from perfect, but after leading Vandy to a victory over Missouri, he appeared to be the guy. Of course, he was knocked out with a concussion in the following game after leading the Commodores on a scoring drive. A pocket-passer, Neal has completed 58.6 percent of his passes for 1,193 yards, six touchdowns and four interceptions in 2019.
Freddie Maggard is BACK
Once upon a time, Freddie Maggard was KSR’s Football Guy. After serving on Mark Stoops’ staff for one season as the Director of UK Player Development, Freddie is making his triumphant return to the KSR airwaves. You can hear the former Kentucky quarterback talk about bubble baths, poke sallett and UK football beginning at 12:30 p.m. ET on 630 WLAP.
A Beautiful Day at Vanderbilt Stadium
Mother Nature has not been kind to the Big Blue Nation. The Cats played back-to-back rain games, then endured the cold to watch a loss to Tennessee. Today there will be clear skies, sun and 55-degree weather when the game kicks off at 2:30 p.m. CT. Kentucky fans can greet the team at the Cat Walk, beginning at 12:15 CT near Gate 3. Once the BBN enters the stadium, it will be the first time UK fans have been able to enjoy a cold beer while watching an SEC game. Enjoy!
TV, Radio, Vegas
Kentucky opened as 8.5-point favorites, now pushing up to UK -10, with the over-under hovering around 41.5. Taylor Zarzour, Matt Stinchcomb and Alyssa Lang are on the call for the SEC Network. If you can’t watch, there are multiple ways to listen to The Voice of the Wildcats.
- AM: 840 WHAS, 630 WLAP
- FM: 98.1 WBUL
- Satellite: XM-190 and Sirius-133
- Online: iHeart Radio
The Cats will look crisp in the all-white combo.
College Football Schedule
It’s a great day for college football. Luckily, the Cats do not play until after the four undefeated teams go head-to-head at noon and 3:30 p.m.
- Noon: #5 Alabama at Miss. State on ESPN
- Noon: Michigan State at #15 Michigan on Fox
- Noon: Indiana at #9 Penn State on ABC
- Noon: #11 Florida at Missouri on CBS
- Noon: Kansas at #22 Oklahoma State on FS1
- 2:30: #23 Navy on #18 Notre Dame on NBC
- 3:30: #4 Georgia at #12 Auburn on CBS
- 3:30: Wake Forest at #3 Clemson on ABC
- 4:00: #8 Minnesota at #20 Iowa on Fox
- 7:00: #1 LSU at Ole Miss on ESPN
- 7:30: #10 Oklahoma at #13 Baylor on ABC
- 7:30: South Carolina at Texas A&M on SECN
- 8:00: UCLA at #7 Utah on Fox
- 10:15: New Mexico at #21 Boise State on ESPN2
- 10:30: Arizona at #6 Oregon on ESPN
Have you Voted for Lynn Bowden today?
You haven’t yet? Well get on it!
Nebraska and LSU football fans will show no mercy. The BBN cannot let them steal a Paul Hornung Award vote from Lynn Bowden, an award he rightfully deserves. Click here and cast your daily vote right now.
Decision Day for Isaiah Jackson
An hour before UK kicks off against Vanderbilt, Isaiah Jackson will announce his college decision from his high school at 2:30 p.m. ET. A five-star 6’9″ forward from the Detroit area, he’s the No. 25 player in America according to the 247 Composite Rankings. A Syracuse hat will be on the table, but most recruiting analysts believe it’s between Alabama and UK. Evan Daniels described it as a “toss up” between the two schools. Which ever school he selects, Jackson will be able to sign a letter of intent at the ceremony.
High School Football Scores
- Frederick Douglass 24, Scott County 14
- Tates Creek 37, Dunbar 29
- Boyle County 54, Lex Cath 7
- Somerset 28, LCA 26
- Louisville Central 18, Franklin County 7
- Moore 32, John Hardin 30 OT
- DeSales 30, CAL 7
- Madison Southern 24, East Jessamine 21
- Southwestern 21, Whitley County 15
- Wayne County 63, Corbin 49
- McCracken County 17, Henderson County 6
- North Hardin 31, Central Hardin 7
- Pikeville 45, Hazard 12
- Newport Central Catholic 40, Ludlow 20
The KSR Shop and Kentucky Branded have the perfect gift ideas for the Kentucky fan in your life. Take advantage of the special holiday preview sale now through Sunday! Head to ShopKSR.com to receive 20% off your items. Complete your holiday shopping now. Something for every Kentucky lover!
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©November 15th, 2019 @ 11:00pm
Coming to Nashville for tomorrow’s Kentucky vs. Vanderbilt game? Here’s everything you need to know.
Plenty of tickets are still available
This probably won’t surprise you, but there are lots of tickets still up for grabs for tomorrow’s game on Ticketmaster and secondary markets. Use your ticket dealer of choice (we like Guy On The Corner) or just walk around the stadium and scalp before the game.
KSR Pregame Show: 11:30 a.m. CT/12:30 p.m. ET
For road games, the pregame show starts three hours before kickoff, so at 12:30 p.m. ET, tune into 630 WLAP or fire up that iHeart app to hear Matt, Ryan, Drew, and special guest FREDDIE MAGGARD preview the Cats vs. the ‘Dores.
Cat Walk: 12:15 p.m. CT
At noon, come to Gate 3 in the southeast corner of the stadium (off Jess Neely Drive) to greet the Cats as they arrive.
You can drink at the game!
Vanderbilt approved stadium-wide alcohol sales this season, so if you’re coming down and are of age, you can enjoy a brew. It’s ain’t cheap, though. A 16 oz. can of Bud Light costs $8.
Here are Vanderbilt’s rules for enjoying responsibly:
- All guests must be 21 years of age to purchase alcoholic beverages; a valid ID is required for purchase.
- A limit of two beers purchased at one time per legal ID.
- Sales will begin when gates open (two hours prior to kickoff).
- Per conference requirements, sales will end at the end of the third quarter once time has expired.
- A security officer or Spectra staff member will begin to close the line with three minutes remaining in the third quarter and only the guests that were already standing in line will be able to purchase alcohol.
Stadium and Parking Maps
The visitor’s sections are U and V, but blue will be everywhere.
Spots in the Natchez Trace Surface lots cost $50, while passes for the 25th Avenue parking garage cost $15. Several businesses surrounding the stadium will open their lots for a fee, or you can search for a spot on the street in the Hillsboro Village area and walk over. Or, just Lyft or Uber from your hotel (I recommend that).
Tailgating for Vanderbilt games is not easy. It’s an urban campus, meaning most of the parking is in garages and the few green spaces around the stadium are reserved for Vandy groups. Centennial Park is across West End Avenue from the stadium, but you’re not allowed to drink alcohol in city parks. If you’re hell bent on tailgating before the game, you can buy a pass for one of the Natchez Trace Surface lots or try out Vandyville, Vandy’s designated tailgating area. It opens at 8 a.m. and is located at the corner of Jess Neely Drive and Natchez Trace.
Clear Bag Policy
Kickoff: 2:30 p.m. CT/3:30 p.m. ET, SEC Network
Taylor Zarzour, Matt Stinchcomb, and Alyssa Long will be on the call for the SEC Network. You can also stream the game on the ESPN app or listen on the UK Sports Network or Sirius channel 133 or XM 190.
Postgame Show: Approximately one hour after the game’s over
If you drive back to the Bluegrass after the game’s over, listen to the KSR Postgame Show. If you hit the streets of Nashville to celebrate and and need a recommendation on where to go, check out my flowcharts from the SEC Tournament.
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©November 15th, 2019 @ 10:45pm
Following Devin Askew’s reclassification this morning, Kentucky’s 2020 recruiting class is now No. 1 in the country, ranking ahead of Duke, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas Tech in 247 Sports’ rankings.
Four of five commitments have signed so far: Askew, a five-star guard; five-star shooting guard Terrence Clarke; and four-star forwards Lance Ware and Cam’Ron Fletcher. Five-star guard BJ Boston is also expected to send in his paperwork during the early signing period, which ends on November 20.
Calipari might not be done yet. Kentucky is a finalist for five-star power forward Isaiah Jackson, who will announce his decision tomorrow afternoon. Jackson is also considering Syracuse and Alabama, the latter of which has accounted for three of the latest picks on his 247 Sports Crystal Ball. Is that who Terrence Clarke is alluding to with this tweet?
We ain’t done either ???? https://t.co/53oMH2YpeC
— Terrence Clarke (@terrenceclarke_) November 15, 2019
Cam’Ron Fletcher signed his letter of intent yesterday, but Kentucky waited until today to release the official video greeting him to the family, featuring a cameo from another former four-star recruit, Tyler Herro:
— Kentucky Basketball (@KentuckyMBB) November 15, 2019
I really like how UK’s using former players in these videos. If you’re keeping track, Terrence Clarke’s featured a shoutout from Rajon Rondo; Lance Ware’s Julius Randle; and Askew’s Brandon Knight. Who will welcome BJ Boston to the family?