The KSR Shop and Kentucky Branded are having a huge sale on short sleeve tees throughout the weekend. Head to ShopKSR.com to receive 50% off select short sleeve tees! Check out the great selection of KSR, UK, and State Pride apparel. Plenty of new designs to add to your wardrobe. Sale runs through Sunday!
By Zack Geoghegan on ©July 19th, 2019 @ 11:43pm
The comeback tour didn’t last long for a group of former Kentucky players. The two-seeded Bluegrass Boys were knocked out of the first round at The Basketball Tournament by seven-seeded D2, 77-62.
Making up the Kentucky portion of the roster was Ramon Harris, Dominique Hawkins, Marcus Lee, and Kevon Galloway. But it was team D2 (uncoincidentally comprised of mostly former Divison II athletes) that came away with the game-winning shot to advance into the second round.
*Josh Harrellson and Derek Willis did not play despite being listed on the initial team roster*
The atmosphere – even for a 9 p.m. start time – was typical Big Blue Nation fashion, cheering on their former Cats until the bitter end.
Lee finished with 15 points and eight rebounds for the Bluegrass Boys while recent Norther Kentucky University graduate Drew McDonald added another 16 points and six rebounds for the blue and white.
The Kentucky boys might be out, but at least we still have DeMarcus Cousins (and Chris Lofton?).
We’ll have more from this game and more on Saturday during round two of The Basketball Tournament.
By Zack Geoghegan on ©July 19th, 2019 @ 10:30pm
KSBar and Grille is the place in Lexington to catch University of Kentucky games (pre and postgame too) as well as other events such as the NBA Playoffs, UFC fights, the World Cup, MLB games, PGA tour events, and more.
KSBar might be known for their smoked wings but don’t miss out on the brisket platter, fried katfish, chicken and waffles, and the great assortment of burgers. Start off with the house chips loaded to the ceiling smothered with pulled pork or chicken straight off the smoker topped with the house BBQ sauce.
Head to the KSBar and Grille website ksbarandgrille.com to see a full menu and drink list.
Be on the look out for different specials and events.
KSBar and Grille is located at: 1030 South Broadway, Lexington, KY 40504
You can be a part of KSR’s Top 10 Tweets by using hashtags like #KSR #BBN or #KSRtop10. You can also nominate tweets by mentioning them with the hashtag. If we like what we see, it could be posted the next day.
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#10 Kentucky Athletics
— Kentucky Athletics (@UKAthletics) July 19, 2019
— FIBA (@FIBA) July 19, 2019
And look who is front and center.
#8 Bluegrass Boys
— Bluegrass Boys (@BluegrassBoys19) July 19, 2019
New school learning from the old school.
#7 Ray J. Vaske
Free Enes + Tacko Fall = Free Tacos https://t.co/3rXbwOukT7
— Ray J. Vaske (@outRAGEous02) July 19, 2019
Not No. 1, but good enough for the Top 10.
#6 Drew Franklin
— Drew Franklin (@DrewFranklinKSR) July 19, 2019
But we bleeped it. Your curious ears are fine.
#5 Jack Pilgrim
— Jack Pilgrim (@JackPilgrimKSR) July 19, 2019
Survive and Advance.
#4 Terry Jordan
— Terry Jordon (@tnjordon) July 19, 2019
Mood for the entire day.
#3 Zack Geoghegan
Quincy Miller, Daniel Orton, Jaleel Cousins, and Willie Reed all getting perimeter shots up. A massive front court for Loyalty is Love. pic.twitter.com/zzuQp769z2
— Zack Geoghegan (@ZackGeoghegan) July 19, 2019
When was the last time you saw Daniel Orton play basketball?
#2 Aaron Fleener
LOL @ newspapers. Let me help. P-o-s-t-O-n. pic.twitter.com/VW5W7UQATY
— Aaron Flener (@AaronFlener) July 19, 2019
At least they got it right in the caption..?
#1 Jamie Shaw
Kentucky Guard Tyrese Maxey (@TyreseMaxey) has separated himself early at CP3 Elite Guard Camp with his ability to make shots. Strong frame, quick 1st step but the jump shot is falling at a high clip #PhenomHoops
— Jamie Shaw (@JamieShaw5) July 19, 2019
*evil laugh* Exxxxxcellent.
By Alex Holder on ©July 19th, 2019 @ 10:00pm
Everyone has their own special Kentucky memory from being in a sold-out Kroger Field or Rupp Arena. Some of us have even seen the Cats raise a trophy in early April as the king of college basketball or win a big-time bowl game. Most of these memories we cherish have lasted us a lifetime. They are stories we will or already have told our kids. Its what makes us fans that are drawn to be apart of the Big Blue Nation. While it’s still offseason time, why not talk about my five favorite memories as a fan of being inside of a stadium watching the Cats play.
5.) Stevie GOT LOOSE:
Number 5 on my list has to be from that 2007 football season, right? This one was not just special because of the upset, but special because I was there in attendance with my dad. To me, going to watch the Cats play with my dad is just special. It’s even more special when they pull off an upset over their arch-rival. Growing up, Kentucky football has always held a huge place in my heart. It’s the first UK sport I had ever seen live. I grew up watching JLo sling that thing around against the Hoosiers.
Anyway, at the time I was in the fifth grade, and, for my birthday, my mom had bought me Kentucky/Louisville football tickets. This was by far the biggest Kentucky football game I had ever attended.
As soon as my dad and I touched down in the parking lot, you could just feel the energy. You got the vibe that this game was going to be awesome from start to finish. Now, back in those days, I was the one that wanted to be in my seat the moment the gates opened – which could be anywhere from two to three hours before kickoff. Now that I am a bit older, I definitely see why my dad wanted to partake in the tailgate festivities a little longer.
When the game started you could tell that the energy from the parking lot had easily made its way into Commonwealth Stadium. The game was back and forth. In the fourth quarter with 39 seconds to play in the game and UofL up 34-33, Andre Woodson dropped back to pass on the Cats’ own 35-yard line hitting Stevie Johnson down the sidelines. We all remember that well – giving the Cats the go-ahead lead that would win them the game, 40-34.
Being a little fifth grader watching Kentucky take down No. 9 Louisville for the first time in 4 years with my dad, on essentially a game-winning TD, was one of the more special memories I’ve ever had as a Wildcat fan.
4.) Beating the Cards in March:
The 2013-14 Kentucky basketball season occurred during my junior year of high school. During spring break, my friend and I decided to get tickets to the Midwest Regional in Indianapolis before the brackets had even come out. Why you might ask? Well, because just like you, as I do love my Cats, I also enjoy the game of college basketball. So 93 bucks for two Sweet 16 games and an Elite 8 game as a 17-year-old sounded tremendous.
At the time, I must admit I was bummed out that I would be spending my week of vacation in Indiana (because who wouldn’t be??), but little did I know at that time the Cats would magically end up in the midwest region and pull off an upset over a 34-0 team in Wichita State. Yeah, you know the story. The dang thing happened. Not only was I going to get to watch Kentucky play in the Sweet 16, but was also watching them play Louisville, which, at the time, I had never seen in person before.
So here it was, Kentucky came out of the gate sloppy. Louisville came out absolutely dominating the game. Everything was going their way. At the time I thought my luck and the Cats’ luck had run out. At one point, Kentucky trailed by 13 and lost Willie Cauley-Stein. As some of you readers may already know, I wasn’t quite optimistic with that Kentucky team. Like you, I had been let down by this team time after time during the season. I also didn’t really know if I should believe the tweak had actually worked or not.
Boy, was I wrong, and then some. Kentucky would make their largest comeback of the season. In the second half of the first half, the Cats clawed their way back into it. Trailing by only 3 at the half, it would set up the second half to be a nail bitter. Aaron Harrison hit a corner three with 40 seconds left, to give the Cats the lead for the rest of the game! This memory ranks at number 4, because of how unexpected the whole situation was. Oh yeah, and the best part about it was throwing my L’s down as a 17-year-old to all of the grown Louisville fans!
3.) Beating Penn State in the Citrus Bowl:
After beating Florida in the same season, I didn’t think it was quite possible to have the same gratifying feeling I had felt that day in Gainesville. Beating Penn State, however, a once upon a time blue blood powerhouse in a New Year’s Day bowl game, was right up there in terms of awesomeness. Watching Penn State fans think it was such a joke to be in the Citrus Bowl against Kentucky was funny. To add to the humor, the Cats came out swinging, just absolutely punching them in the mouths from the start. We also got to watch Benny Snell break the UK all-time rushing record. Just about every time he carried the ball, everyone was looking around asking each other, “How many more does he need??”.
Then there was the 4th quarter Penn State comeback. Along with other Kentucky fans, I found myself out in the concourse area, pacing. I was thinking to myself “it’s too good to be true” but then ultimately watched as the Cats finished off the Nittany Lions in the final minutes. This was the last nail in the coffin on an amazing season. The Cats had their first 10 win season in over four decades, and I was a part of it as a fan in the stands.
2.) The shot that beat Michigan:
Continuing on to my second favorite memory would have to be the Aaron Harrison shot against Michigan – the shot that would start a trend for him. Now, you may ask, “Dude how is this not number 1 for you?”. Well, I promise, just keep reading and I will explain myself.
Just like the game prior to this one, I couldn’t quite wrap my head around the fact that I was watching Kentucky play in the tournament for the price I paid, and for the pure luck of the bracket arrangement. I was getting to see the Cats play for a chance to head to Dallas for a Final Four. And, to add to it, the game was way more than I could have ever expected. It was back and forth the whole time.
With 10 seconds left, the game was tied at 72 apiece. I thought to myself, “Am I really going to kick the bucket this young?”. My heart couldn’t take much more. And then, BAM. Andrew Harrison handed off to his brother, Aaron, for the trey in Caris Levert’s face, with three seconds to play which would put the Cats up by 3. And, yes, I think we all know the ending to this story, Nik Stauskas would miss a half-court buzzer-beater which would send the Cats marching onto the Final Four.
I remember my friend picking me up and for a second my mind went blank. We stayed up in the Lucas Oil Stadium rafters until they kicked us out. I had been to Rupp Arena many times and had even seen Kentucky play in the tournament against Cincinnati in the RCA Dome in 2005 with Rajon Rondo. But not even a trip to Rupp could touch that feeling I had in Indianapolis.
1.) Beating Florida to break a 31-year streak:
For the longest time, my No.1 favorite in-person memory in UK lore was watching Aaron Harrison hit that shot against Michigan that shocked the world on that March afternoon. I simply didn’t think it could be matched, but this one September night, on a hot late summer day in Florida, would change that for me. My all-time favorite in-person memory as a Cats fan is now, without a doubt, the day the Cats took down the Florida Gators. This was the day the Cats broke the streak for the first time in over 31 years. Not only did we end the streak, but we did it in Gainesville, and being there myself made it all the better.
Even though it was just a regular-season game, it felt like so much had been lifted off the program’s shoulders. It felt like, as a fan, I could finally breathe some fresh air. It felt like we could finally be the program we had dreamed about being, with Mark Stoops at the helm. It was such a gratifying moment being there, that it brought tears to my eyes. As I exited the Swamp, Florida fans stared at us Kentucky fans as we jumped in the air and hugged each other with joy.
These are UK memories that I will surely never forget. Now I want to hear it from you the reader. Either in the comments section or on my Twitter page, tell me either your top 5, top 3, or just favorite memory from being a fan in the stands.
And always, GO CATS!!!!
By Jack Pilgrim on ©July 19th, 2019 @ 9:30pm
While the Bluegrass Boys roster is filled with former Kentucky basketball players, Team KBC is loaded with other high-level talent around the area.
In fact, they put together an anti-UK roster in a sense, highlighted by Chris Lofton (Tennessee), Anthony Hickey (LSU), Nick Mayo (EKU), and AJ Slaughter (WKU).
In their round one game this evening, KBC took down the Peoria All-Stars by a final score of 94-82.
Former Hilltopper guard AJ Slaughter torched the nets, dropping 34 points on 11-18 shooting and 6-10 from three. He also added six rebounds, three assists, and one steal.
Chris Lofton, a Maysville, KY native, finished second on the team with 18 points on 6-14 shooting and 4-11 from three. The former Volunteer also managed four rebounds, four assists, and two steals.
Nick Mayo, who recently signed on to play professionally in Japan after an impressive Summer League with the Miami Heat, scored 17 points on 7-13 shooting. The former EKU Colonel also grabbed three rebounds and two steals in the victory.
Team KBC will take on DeMarcus Cousins’ Loyalty is Love squad tomorrow afternoon in the Lexington regional quarterfinals.
By Zack Geoghegan on ©July 19th, 2019 @ 9:00pm
Former Kentucky forward Kyle Wiltjer has accepted an invitation to represent his home country of Canada in the upcoming FIBA World Cup, according to the Canadian Basketball Federation.
Wiltjer is among 29 players invited to compete for a spot on the final roster. He is one of four former Gonzaga Bulldogs who will also suit up for Canada. Joining him will also be some familiar faces from the Big Blue Nation, such as Jamal Murray, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, and Trey Lyles.
Wiltjer spent two seasons at Kentucky before transferring to Gonzaga and finishing his final two years there.
Fresh off an NBA Championship, Toronto Raptors head coach Nick Nurse will be running the show for Wiltjer and Canada.
If you have to pick a nation to root for next month that isn’t the USA, then might I suggest cheering for our neighbors to the north. That is, if you can stomach also rooting for former Duke guard R.J. Barrett.
The FIBA World Cup kicks off on Aug. 31 and runs through Sept. 15.
By Jack Pilgrim on ©July 19th, 2019 @ 8:15pm
Former Kentucky star DeMarcus Cousins’ debut as a general manager was a massive success.
To tip off The Basketball Tournament at Frederick Douglass High School, Cousins’ Loyalty is Love squad defeated the Illinois Hoopville Warriors by a final score of 107-98.
— Jack Pilgrim (@JackPilgrimKSR) July 19, 2019
Former Baylor standout Pierre Jackson led Loyalty is Love with 26 points, 11 rebounds, and four assists, followed by former Marquette star Darius Johnson-Odom with 24 points, four rebounds, and one assist.
Jackson was joined by fellow Baylor standouts Isaiah Austin and Quincy Miller, who finished with 14 and 13 points, respectively. This was the first time Austin has played an official game on American soil since he was diagnosed with Marfan syndrome in 2014, a genetic disorder that affects the body’s connective tissue. At the time of the diagnosis, Austin said he was no longer allowed to play basketball at a competitive level since there was a high risk of his aorta rupturing if he continued to play.
As for Miller, you may recall that he was once a serious Kentucky basketball target in the class of 2011, with many considering him a near-lock to end up in Lexington. Instead, the former five-star forward signed with Baylor.
Former Kentucky center Daniel Orton also put up 11 points on 3-5 shooting to go with two rebounds and one blocked shot in his first game back in Lexington.
Loyalty is Love will take on the winner of KBC and the Peoria Allstars tomorrow afternoon.
By Zack Geoghegan on ©July 19th, 2019 @ 8:00pm
The rumors surrounding Washington Wizard All-Star guard Bradley Beal haven’t quieted since his teammate John Wall missed most of last season due to a few different injuries. Despite the NBA summer simmering down in terms of daily (or even hourly) breaking news, it doesn’t seem all that far-fetched that we could see both Beal and Wall on a different team next season.
According to The Athletic‘s Frank Isola, the Miami Heat are reportedly willing to take on Wall’s monster contract if it means adding Beal into the fold, as well.
The Miami Heat have turned their attention to Bradley Beal and have shown interest in taking on the rest of John Wall’s 4 year $171M contract to land Beal
(Via PTI) pic.twitter.com/PZqlL78cfu
— NBA Central (@TheNBACentral) July 17, 2019
Wall’s maximum contract extension that will net him $170 million over the next four years hasn’t even kicked in yet. The upcoming season is the official beginning of what is looking to be an incredibly dangerous asset. One that could lock a team down for the entire duration of its length.
But the idea of combining Wall (a healthy Wall, that is), Beal, and Butler is mouth-watering. Health is key for Wall, who has played only 73 games over the last two seasons and is set to earn close to $48 million when he turns 33. Bringing in Beal would immediately make the Heat a contender in the Eastern Conference. Even a less-productive version of Wall makes Miami ultra-competitive.
It was a calculated risk by Heat President Pat Riley to sign-and-trade for Butler. I don’t think there’s a way to calculate just how good or bad a scenario with Wall/Beal/Butler would do over the course of an 82-game season. Differing personalities will always be a topic of discussion. Wall and Butler both need the ball to be at their best. How healthy is Wall? Is the risk of adding two All-Stars – one with serious injury concerns – worth the possible reward? Especially when young players on Miami’s current roster such as Justise Winslow, Bam Adebayo, and Tyler Herro have all shown promise and would likely be shipped out in the process?
Beal is coming off the best season of his career. The former Florida Gator averaged 25.6 points, 5.0 rebounds, and 5.5 assists for the Wizards last season en route to his second-straight All-Star appearance. Without Wall, Beal actually thrived as the main option. Beal might operate better in a system that is dedicated to feeding him the ball instead of working him off other prominent ball-handlers. But even at 25-years old, it would be hard to argue that Beal will ever be good enough to be the top scorer on a championship team.
I personally don’t love the idea behind this trade pitch. And watching Adebayo/Herro suffer in Washington D.C. would be brutal given their potential. But the league is driven by stars. If Miami has a chance to add two of them in one trade, they should absolutely go for it.
By Zack Geoghegan on ©July 19th, 2019 @ 7:30pm
Enes Kanter was a fan-favorite at Kentucky despite never playing one minute as a Wildcat. Now eight years into his NBA career, he’s about to be a fan-favorite once again – without even playing a game.
Kanter and the Boston Celtics recently agreed to a 2-year, $10 million deal to join Kemba Walker in replacing Kyrie Irving (signed in Brooklyn) and Al Horford (signed in Philadelphia). Not even a few days after his introductory press conference, Kanter is already in love with his new home.
I’m loving this place ? pic.twitter.com/pQmGjgSxIL
— Enes Kanter (@EnesKanter) July 18, 2019
In the video, Kanter gives a little tour of Boston’s newly built facility. He shows off the never-ending row of championship Celtics banners and sums it all up by saying “I’m loving this place”.
Kanter has already gotten off to a good start in Boston and with the local fans. Whether he’s cheering on Tom Brady, throwing shade at Irving, or professing his love to a city he just moved to, Kanter knows how to please the people.
He was also spotted playing pickup with children in a full Celtics uniform.
.@EnesKanter played 5-on-5 with some kids in his *full* Celtics uniform ??
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) July 18, 2019
My guess is he’ll do justttttt fine in Boston.
By Zack Geoghegan on ©July 19th, 2019 @ 7:00pm
When you’re as talented as Rhyne Howard at the sport of basketball, you don’t know what an offseason is. Beginning on Saturday, Howard will lead the women’s Team USA U19 squad into the 2019 FIBA World Cup.
The look you have when you are eyeing your second ? in as many years.
— Kentucky WBB (@KentuckyWBB) July 19, 2019
The event – which takes in place in Bangkok, Thailand – will kick off with pool play on Saturday. The top-ranked USA will take on seventh-ranked Australia in the opening game, followed by a matchup against South Korea on Sunday and finishing against Hungary on Tuesday.
The U19 team is made up mainly of incoming college freshmen and sophomores, with Howard listed as the second-oldest player on the team. The Kentucky guard has a history of success in international competition, bringing home the gold medal as a member of the U18 team last year while also earning MVP honors along the way.
Howard set several records and earned plenty of awards as a freshman at Kentucky last season and will head into her sophomore campaign as one of the most highly-anticipated players to watch across the entire country. This summer trip to Thailand is just building up the hype surrounding her.
If Team USA advances past the group stage, they will go into the Round of 16 on July 25 and hopefully all the way to the gold medal game, which will take place on July 28.
Good luck to Howard and the rest of the Team USA ladies. I hope Rhyne upgraded to a bigger trophy case this summer.
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©July 19th, 2019 @ 6:30pm
Shoutout to these Kentucky fans in Petra, Jordan, where the temperature today topped out at 84 degrees, which is downright chilly compared to the weather we’re experiencing. Thankfully, a cold front is on the way, just in time for the KSR Golf Scramble in Somerset on Monday, which kicks off Week Three of the Blue Lights Across the Bluegrass Summer Tour.
Here’s the schedule:
7/22 – Somerset Golf Outing @ Woodson Bend Resort
7/23 – Somerset @ Associates in Eye Care
7/24 – Monticello @ Conley Bottom Resort
7/25 – Campbellsville @ Mr. Gatti’s Pizza
7/26 – Lexington @ Lexington Legends
8/5 – Bowling Green @ Overtime Sports Bar and Grill
8/6 – Hopkinsville @ Hopkinsville Sportsplex
8/7 – Benton @ CFSB Bank
8/8 – Paducah @ Royal Oaks Chevrolet
8/9 – Louisville Golf Outing @ Glen Oaks Country Club
8/12 – Elizabethtown @ Kentucky Jeep and Truck
8/13 – Danville @ The Discount House 2.0
8/14 – Fort Wright @ Dickmann’s
8/15 – Lexington @ Kentucky Branded
8/16 – Louisville @ TBA
See you along the way!
By Jack Pilgrim on ©July 19th, 2019 @ 6:00pm
This afternoon, former Kentucky basketball players Dominique Hawkins and Marcus Lee will be playing in Lexington for the first time in two and three years, respectively.
The Basketball Tournament is underway at Frederick Douglass High School, where the Wildcat duo will suit up for the Bluegrass Boys with a $2 million cash prize on the line.
But for each of them, it’s not just about the money. It’s about competing against high-level professional talent in front of the Big Blue Nation again.
“It definitely is fun being back, I definitely miss playing at Kentucky,” Hawkins said in a media opportunity on Thursday. “As you guys know, I’ve been overseas playing. I get to play with one of my teammates, Marcus Lee, who is here right now. A lot of other Kentucky players. Hopefully we make a good run in this tournament together.”
“Oh man, it’s a great feeling,” Lee said about being back in Lexington. “There’s no better feeling than being back in Kentucky, at my alma mater, with fans that you love. There’s no better feeling. I’m so excited to be back here playing with Dom. I’m looking forward to a great time.”
But it won’t just be Hawkins and Lee representing the University of Kentucky. Former Wildcats Josh Harrellson, Kevin Galloway, and A.J. Stewart will also be suiting up for the Bluegrass Boys.
Leading the team? Kentucky legend Wayne Turner, who will serve as the team’s head coach during the tournament.
“I’ve never had a coach like him before, he’s so relaxed. I’m so used to Coach Cal and (Madison Central coach) Allen Feldhaus, always in my face and stuff. If I make a mistake, [Turner] is like “It’s good, it’s good. We’re going to get it together,” and stuff like that. With Coach Cal, I was on the bench. If he didn’t yell at me, he was putting me on the bench if I did something bad.”
For Hawkins, who grew up in Richmond, KY, it’ll also be a chance for him to play in front of his friends and family again.
“I know a lot of people that are going to be coming up to see me,” he said. “They’ve always supported me since I was in middle school. They figured out that I was going to be an excellent basketball player and that I’ve been a good kid at home, humble. I love their support, and if they haven’t heard it yet, I really hope they come out and support me.”
For the last two years, the former Kentucky guard has been playing professionally in Estonia and will decide in August where he will be headed next.
“[My time in Estonia] was good,” he said. “The winters are really tough for me, I didn’t have that much snow in Kentucky before. We get like six inches of snow almost every week or so. It was insane for me. The food, it was okay. I’m very picky when it comes to food. They had a few burger spots for me and stuff like that. But the people I met there were really good to me, I had fun, made a lot of new friends.”
As a player, Hawkins says his game has changed exponentially since he’s been at Kentucky.
“I’m much more aggressive now, have the ball in my hands a lot more than I ever have,” he said. “I’m way more comfortable being a point guard and controlling the team, making calls.”
Part of the reason he’s so excited to be back and playing in this tournament? The fact that he has Lee, among other athletic big men, to play with again.
“On my teams, I’ve never really had any athletic bigs overseas, so it’s exciting to get back to that with Marcus,” he said. “Throwing lobs, going off the pick-and-roll, knowing I’ll be open because of his dominant presence in the post.”
For Lee, he says he’s excited to not only play in front of Kentucky fans again, but win games in front of them again, as well.
“We’re bonding really well, really great guys,” he said. “We’re going to have a lot of fun out here, especially with the fans. There’s no better fanbase in the world, so it’ll be really cool to watch. We’re going to win a whole bunch of games.”
And while it’s convenient that they’ll be in Lexington again, the former Kentucky forward knows the BBN would follow them wherever they went. After three years with the basketball program, he knows they’d travel across the country to see current or former Wildcats play.
“It doesn’t matter where we’re playing, people need to realize that we’re still BBN,” he said. “We could be in California and they’d find a way to pack it out in all blue. We’ve got an unfair advantage no matter where we go. We’re Bluegrass Boys, we’ve been here. We’re always here.”
Lee played during the 2017-18 season at California, but it’s been three seasons since we’ve seen him in Lexington.
For him, he’s excited to show Kentucky fans what he’s been working on.
“Yeah, this is a great time for us to come back, show what we’ve improved on, show the love that we have for Kentucky. Just for us to come back, give back, and show that we still love them. It means a lot to us, and I know it means a lot to you guys.”
Personally, the end goal for him is to get back to playing in the NBA.
“Most guys don’t know I had knee surgery in October, so I’ve been doing rehab since then,” Lee said. “Now I’m doing a whole bunch of workouts back at home, trying to get my body right. From now on, it’ll be all about working more and getting back to the NBA. The knee is doing pretty great, it’s working just fine now. Better than college, actually, which is surprising. I’m excited to use it again, it’s been a while since I’ve jumped like that.”
Hawkins, Lee, and the rest of his two-seed Bluegrass Boys will take on seven-seed D2 tonight at 9:00 p.m. ET at Frederick Douglass High School. If you can’t make it in person, you can also catch them live on ESPN3.
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©July 19th, 2019 @ 4:30pm
Do you live in the state of Kentucky? Do you want a 2019 Kentucky Football schedule poster? Set a reminder to go to your area Kroger tomorrow because the posters will be available starting at 8 a.m. They’ll also be distributed at Fan Day on August 3.
This year’s posters are double-sided and feature 12 Wildcats on eight different editions. Kash Daniel, Lynn Bowden, and Terry Wilson each have their own posters, while Kentucky boys Kash, Landon Young, Davonte Robinson, Mason Wolfe, and Drake Jackson share another. The final four versions of the poster feature running back A.J. Rose and linebacker Boogie Watson; Robinson and Young; offensive guard Logan Stenberg and defensive lineman Josh Paschal; and Jackson and nose guard Quinton Bohanna.
Here’s a closer look courtesy of UK Athletics:
For a complete list of Kroger locations distributing the posters, click here.
By Aaron Torres on ©July 19th, 2019 @ 4:00pm
If you’ve followed this site or listened to Kentucky Sports Radio this morning, you know that it’s a big basketball weekend in Lexington. That’s because the city has been tabbed as one of the eight host cities for “The TBT” a single elimination, five-on-five basketball tournament where the first prize winners get $2 million.
It really is a cool event, and the Lexington regional is loaded. “The Bluegrass Boys” feature a bunch of locally-known guys, as they’re coached by Wayne Turner, and feature names like Dominique Hawkins, Ramon Harris and others. “Loyalty is Love” is one of their opponents, with DeMarcus Cousins as their GM, and others – including Daniel Orton – on their roster.
The games began at 3pm ET at Frederick Douglass High School and will go all night, and as a lead-up to them former Wildcat Mark Krebs, joined KSR’s Aaron Torres Sports Podcast to preview the event.
Krebs also discussed his time playing for the Wildcats with Aaron, most notably his final year in 2010 when the Wildcats made the Elite Eight. That was of course John Calipari’s first team in Lexington, one which featured a slew of guys who are still currently in the NBA, including Cousins, John Wall, Eric Bledsoe, Patrick Patterson and Darius Miller.
So yeah, that was a loaded team, and if you think the guys on that team still don’t think about “what could have been,” think again.
That team knows it was the best team in college basketball. And should have won the title.
— Bluegrass Boys (@BluegrassBoys19) July 19, 2019
“We were no doubt the best team left in the tournament that year,” Krebs told Torres. “I go back and talk to Darius, John and those guys and that’s the first thing they say ‘Man, I wish we could go back and win it. It would be awesome.’”
Unfortunately, it simply wasn’t in the cards for that Wildcats team, as a cold shooting night against West Virginia cost them a year’s worth of work. That is the nature of a one and done tournament of course, where the best team doesn’t always win. That’s not just the case for the 2010 Kentucky Wildcats, but so many teams throughout college basketball history.
Which leads to the question: How many titles would Kentucky have right now if it wasn’t a one and done event? The answer: Almost certainly a lot more.
“It just goes to show you that when it’s one game, winner go home [it’s different],” Krebs said. “I think if it were a seven-game series we would have won it, and Kentucky wins it a lot. But when it comes down to one game, you just never know.”
Still, when reflecting back on his time at Kentucky, Krebs had nothing but great things to say. He is the rare player (maybe the only one actually) whose time in Lexington actually spanned three different coaching staffs, as his first year in 2006-2007 was Tubby Smith’s final season at the school, before he played two years under Billy Gillispie and then a final season under Calipari.
And as fun as his four years were in Lexington, he can’t believe it’s been 10 more since he last played in 2010.
“I just feel like it goes by so fast,” he said. “When I go back to watch practice or see Coach Cal, when I get back there, it’s almost like no time has passed. But when you actually look at the teams that have come through, the amount of pros that have come through, and all that has happened in 10 years, it’s mind-boggling.”
To listen to Krebs’ full interview on KSR’s Aaron Torres Sports Podcast, click here.
And if you’re interested in attending the TBT, action tips off at 3pm local time at Frederick Douglass High School, with the Bluegrass Boys playing at 9pm ET.
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©July 19th, 2019 @ 3:30pm
We’ve already shared some comments from DeMarcus Cousins’ appearance on Kentucky Sports Radio this morning, but if you missed it, do yourself a favor and go back and listen on podcast because it was great.
In addition to talking about his time at Kentucky, Cousins shared his thoughts on the Warriors coming up short in the NBA Finals and his new home in Los Angeles. He reminisced about his favorite places to eat in Lexington, and said he’ll give KSBar a try, but only if we’ll give him free meals because he couldn’t get them during his college days.
Boogie felt so at home with the KSR crew that he even let a bad word slip out when discussing Matt’s original nickname for him, Carl:
— Drew Franklin (@DrewFranklinKSR) July 19, 2019
Boogie is the best. Listen below starting at the top of hour two:
By Zack Geoghegan on ©July 19th, 2019 @ 3:00pm
Former Kentucky center Daniel Orton isn’t often credited with the success that has been crafted since John Calipari took over as the head coach of the Wildcats back in 2009, but he was a vital component in building the legacy that we see 10 years later.
Orton is back in Lexington this weekend, participating in The Basketball Tournament (located in the gymnasium of Frederick Douglass High School) on team Loyalty is Love, managed by former Wildcat teammate DeMarcus Cousins.
Orton doesn’t make his return with a massive NBA contract or significant interest from the Association, and he’s typically referenced after players such as John Wall, Cousins, Eric Bledsoe, Patrick Patterson, and Darius Miller when we think about the 2010 Kentucky team. With that being said, he still understands the important role he played in building the program to where it is today.
“Talking to past teammates, you know we talk about everything: ‘We really started this’. We know this is long before us, Kentucky basketball was here before us, it’s gonna be here after us,” Orton told reporters following a morning practice at Frederick Douglass High School. “But, I feel like the Cal-era has been a changing point in the school’s history. It was pretty amazing to feel that.”
Plenty has changed since Orton’s year in the Bluegrass State. His eyes nearly popped out of his head when asked about the differences from his time on campus compared to now. He said he is “envious” of all these extra amenities, but is happy the new guys get to experience something that he was a part of building.
The 6-foot-10 big man averaged only 3.4 points and 3.3 rebounds in under 14 minutes per game during his lone season at Kentucky, but that didn’t prevent him from being selected in the first round by the Orlando Magic with the 29th overall pick. His selection capped what would turn out to be the only NBA draft in history to have five players from the same college selected in the first round.
Even if Orton’s production on the court during his freshman season was minimal, it was him being drafted despite all that, which might go down as one of Calipari’s most impressive feats. You can’t talk about the 2010 Kentucky team without mentioning Orton. And if you do, you’re doing history a disservice. He was the fifth five-star recruit from that class, the fifth first-round pick. He was a Billy Gillispie recruit that decided to stick around.
Knee injuries early in Orton’s career ravaged what could have been a long run in the professionals, but he’s back looking to showcase what he’s made of on national television.
When Cousins initially asked Orton if he wanted to play on his team, Orton jokingly responded by saying “You don’t have to ask. Just let me know I’m on the team.”
The Basketball Tournament will be broadcasted on ESPN3 throughout Friday, ESPN2 on Saturday, and ending with the final game on Sunday airing on ESPN. You can watch Orton and Loyalty is Love Friday night on ESPN3 at 5:00 p.m.
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©July 19th, 2019 @ 2:30pm
Not only is Shai Gilgeous-Alexander one of the brightest young stars in the NBA, he’s turning heads in the fashion world as well.
The former Cat made Sports Illustrated’s fourth annual Fashionable 50, honoring the world’s most stylist athletes. He’s listed as one of seven rising stars.
“After being drafted by the Clippers in 2018, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander immediately made an impact with his fashion throughout the season, showing off put-together pre-game looks packed with on-trend pieces and patterns,” the piece said.
Last month, SLAM Magazine named Shai their League Fits Drip Rookie of the Year:
— LA Clippers (@LAClippers) June 24, 2019
A sampling of Shai’s style, from Instagram:
View this post on Instagram
A post shared by Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (@shai) on
Who could forget the Reba shirt?
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A post shared by Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (@shai) on
Also in the Fashionable 50: Serena Williams, Odell Beckham Jr., Russell Westbrook, LeBron James, Tom Brady, Cam Newton, and PK Subban. Not bad company.
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©July 19th, 2019 @ 1:30pm
Earlier this week, four-star small forward Cam’Ron Fletcher included Kentucky in his top five, and now, he’s scheduled his official visit to Lexington. According to Jake Weingarten, Fletcher will visit Kentucky on August 1. He’s also considering Michigan State, Missouri, North Carolina, and Alabama.
The St. Louis, Missouri native is considered the 36th best player and the 8th best small forward in the 2020 class by 247 Sports Composite. At the NBPA Top 100 Camp earlier this summer, he told our own Jack Pilgrim he’s very interested in Kentucky.
“I have a high level of interest in Kentucky. I don’t know too much about the program yet, but I know that they’re a really good school and I definitely know about Coach Cal.”
On Wednesday, Evan Daniels picked Kentucky in Fletcher’s Crystal Ball. Coincidence? I think not.
Watch him work below:
With BJ Boston visiting next weekend and Fletcher the weekend after, the 2020 recruiting season is in full swing.
By Nick Roush on ©July 19th, 2019 @ 12:30pm
What if DeMarcus Cousins returned to Kentucky for the 2010-11 season? It almost happened.
Before his team takes the court this weekend at The Basketball Tournament, Boogie reunited with the Matt Jones, Drew Franklin and Ryan Lemond at Frederick Douglass High School. Cousins admitted that John Calipari had to talk him into entering the NBA Draft.
“When I came in, you know I was a good player. But all the hype was with John (Wall), which was well deserved. Me coming from where I’m from, it wasn’t really a reality for me, like, I got a chance to go to the NBA? It was big enough me just making it to college.
“They were like, you got a chance to play in the NBA. I’m like, the real NBA? I don’t know if I’m ready for that Cal. But you know Cal, being the guy he is, as supportive as he is, he pushed me to make the right decision and I’m thankful for that. I love him for that. It turned out pretty decent.”
Even though he left after only one season, Cousins often returns to Lexington. If he can’t be on campus, he’s always willing to help those who are following in his footsteps.
“I take pride in being the team that brought everything back to life. We take pride in that. I feel like we started a tradition and we want to continue to make it go. That’s why we care as much about every group that comes through. Whenever we get a chance we reach out, we’re supportive, we share advice, whatever we can do to help. I think Cal has done a great job to continue to help the program. It doesn’t matter if you came out in 2010 or the 2021 class, we’re all family, we’re all supportive and we all want what’s best for each other.”
By Nick Roush on ©July 19th, 2019 @ 11:39am
As expected, the preseason polls are not kind to the Kentucky Wildcats.
The media members gathered at the 2019 edition of SEC Media Days predicted Kentucky to finish sixth in the SEC, just a few votes behind the Tennessee Volunteers. The Cats received one first-place vote after 2018’s ten-win season.
|South Carolina (1)||883|
Alabama was the prohibitive favorite to win the conference, yet again.
|Mississippi State (1)||769|
Four Wildcats were named preseason All-SEC, but no one was picked higher than the third team. On the offensive line Logan Stenberg and Drake Jackson made the cut, followed by Kash Daniel at linebacker and Lynn Bowden as an all-purpose back. You’ll find the complete preseason All-SEC teams here.