Where are those giant dice from Commonwealth Staidum when you need them?! 2018 5-star wide →
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©July 30th, 2015 @ 7:00pm
Friday’s payday for a lot of folks, but I don’t think any of us will cash a check like the one John Calipari will. Tomorrow, Cal gets his $1.6 million retention bonus for the 2014-2015 season, the first of many in his latest contract. Here’s how much Cal will get if he stays on each season from now through 2020-2021:
- July 31, 2015: $1.6 million
- July 31, 2016: $2.1 million
- July 31, 2017: $2.25 million
- July 31, 2018: $2.55 million
- July 31, 2019: $2.6 million
- July 31, 2020: $2.6 million
- July 31: 2021: $2.6 million
That’s a lot of deniro. With Cal giving his most promising remarks yet about retiring at UK yesterday to Seth Greenberg, July 31st might become his favorite day of the year.
By Nick Roush on ©July 30th, 2015 @ 6:45pm
If you thought things were moving too slow at the New Commonwealth Stadium, the paint crew is certainly getting things done quickly. After showing you some progress yesterday, the blue paint job on the outside of the scoreboard is complete.
Like the construction workers, I work much better after the boss buys lunch (cough Matt, cough cough).
By Bobby Reagan on ©July 30th, 2015 @ 6:30pm
We may have our very own Zapruder Film on our hands everyone. We all know the story of William Meredith shooting down the drone owned by David Boggs on Sunday evening. David (allegedly) called into KSR today to defend his side of the story before ending it with a ‘Go Cards’.
Well, take a look for yourself at the raw video here. Does this switch the what side you’re on?
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©July 30th, 2015 @ 6:00pm
Next season is looking more and more exciting, due in part to Jamal Murray’s explosive performances in the Pan Am Games. The Big Lead’s Jason McIntyre ranked the Top 50 college basketball players heading into next season, and three Cats made the list:
2. Skal Labissiere, F/C, Kentucky – Doesn’t quite enter college with the post skills of Jahlil Okafor, but he’s got more range on his jumper. He looks like a more offensive-minded Karl-Anthony Towns.
3. Jamal Murray, SG, Kentucky – If you watched any of the Pan-Am Games, you know this kid became a star. Is this a bit knee-jerk? Perhaps. We do this list last month … he’s probably not in the Top 20. Murray is from Canada, and he lit up anyone who tried to check him this month. He’ll have a bigger impact in Lexington than Devin Booker did last year. And Booker was a lottery pick.
38. Tyler Ulis, PG, Kentucky – Played a pivotal reserve role last year (shooting 42 percent on 3-pointers), but now will have to fight off incoming studs Isaiah Briscoe and Jamal Murray.
Who was #1? Ben Simmons at LSU. Isaiah Briscoe made the “Just Missed” list.
Keep sleeping on Alex Poythress. He’ll make you regret it.
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©July 30th, 2015 @ 5:30pm
If you’re like me, you know very little about Fancy Farm other than it’s a political event and there’s a lot of BBQ. Our own Matt Jones is emceeing this year’s event, which is a pretty big deal when you consider the coverage it gets both locally and nationally. In fact, the Courier-Journal’s Joseph Gerth did a story about Matt’s hosting gig, which he says is one of the biggest curiosities heading into Saturday:
Jones, who is an unabashed Democrat, said he won’t take any shots at politicians who are there but he warned he may be critical of those who don’t attend — including U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, who is scheduled to be in Iowa this weekend.
Paul can’t make it, Jones said, because he “is busy. He’s got to go lose a presidential election.”
He said he gives credit to any politician willing to stand up at this event and others, but “politicians who retract from the moment or who think they’re too big to do something, that infuriates me.”
The picnic doesn’t happen until Saturday, but Matt, Ryan, and Drew will be there tomorrow morning for the show, which will be open to the public. If you’re in the area, head on out from ten to noon to enjoy the festivities and give Matt some encouraging words.
Here’s the schedule for Saturday’s picnic, which will air at 2:30 p.m. ET on KET. If you miss it, it’ll replay throughout the week. (For a full schedule, click here.)
Speaking Order Minutes
Mr. Mark Wilson, Chairman…….…..Welcome/Intros
Bishop William Medley………………Invocation
Ms. Ramsey Carpenter……….……..My Old Ky Home
Ms. Carson McKee…………..………The National Anthem
Matt Jones – Emcee……………………………..3
Rep. Richard Heath (R)………………………….2
Sen. Stan Humphries (R)…………………..….2
Cong. Ed Whitfield (R)…………………..….….3
Sen. Mitch McConnell (R)…………………..…5
Gov. Steve Beshear (D)…………………………5
*Gov. Cand. Jack Conway (D)…………………5
*Gov. Cand. Matt Bevin (R)…………………….5
Lt. Gov. Crit Luallen (D)…………..…………….2
*Lt. Gov. Cand. Jeanean Hampton (R)…….…4
*Lt. Gov. Cand. Sannie Overly (D)…………….4
Ag. Comm. James Comer (R)…………………2 (pending)
*Ag Comm. Cand. Jean Marie Spann (D)…….4
*Ag. Comm. Cand. Ryan Quarles (R)…..…….4
*Att. Gen. Cand. Andy Beshear (D)…..………4
*Att. Gen. Cand. Whitney Westerfield (R)……4
*Sec. of State Incum. Alison Grimes (D)……..4
*Sec. of State Cand. Steve Knipper (R)…..….4
*Aud. Incum. Adam Edelen (D)……………….4
*Aud. Cand. Mike Harmon (R)…………………4
Treas. Todd Hollenbach (D)………………..…..2
*Treas. Cand. Allison Ball (R)……………….…4
*Treas. Cand. Rick Nelson (D)…………………4
You got this, Matt.
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©July 30th, 2015 @ 5:09pm
The BBN practically broke Twitter when Jermaine Eskridge announced his commitment, and Eskridge told Rivals’ Justin Rowland that his primary recruiter, running backs coach Chad Scott, nearly fainted when he called to tell him the good news:
“I talked to Coach (Chad) Scott and he was like, ‘I can’t even breathe right now,'” Eskridge said. “He was like, ‘I’m so excited.’ Yeah, the coaches are excited.”
Eskridge also told Rowland he’s “completely solid” in his commitment to Kentucky, but does plan to take his visits. He’ll come to Lexington for the first time in December.
Breathe, Chad. Breathe.
By Freddie Maggard on ©July 30th, 2015 @ 4:45pm
After watching the limited amount of available Jermaine Eskridge film, it’s safe to say that he’s is a Nickel player. Remember, Nickel refers to when evaluating film, a select few players only require 5 plays in order to pass judgment. It’s hard to fathom that he’s only going into his sophomore year at Tampa’s Jefferson High School.
His freshman year tape mainly showed Eskridge at tight end, linebacker, receiver, and defensive end. He even lined up at defensive tackle on more than one occasion. His permanent home will be at receiver. At 6’3″ 185 lbs., there’s going to be more growth and weight gain. Regardless if that happens or not, this is a big, big time player that I wouldn’t be shocked if he’s not a nationally-rated Top 5 player in 2018.
Recent 16 and 17 commitments served as warning shots that this is not your daddy’s Wildcats. Eskridge’s commitment is a college football carpet bombing.
When assessing underclassmen, I never focus on technique. That will come with experience. But Jermaine’s obvious and elite athletic ability was evident. He was extremely active on defense by causing turnovers, rushing the passer, and pretty much anything else he wanted to do. You see, football evaluation is not rocket science. While watching Eskridge, I saw an elite athlete that can run, jump, doesn’t shy away from contact, and able to perform football actions that are well beyond his age or instruction. Due to his tape not featuring him at receiver, evaluation details were vague. But it was more than obvious, the game comes easy to Jermaine.
When I was evaluating the sophomore to be, I couldn’t help to remember seeing Randy Moss in the ESPN 30 for 30, “Rand University.” I’m not comparing Eskridge to Randy Moss. Let’s get that straight. But much like it was for Randy, Jermaine will be the best overall athlete on the football field, no matter where he plays or who he plays against.
Oh yeah, YAHTZEE!
The fight to retain Eskridge’s commitment will last for three long years and most likely turn nasty. Many, many other suitors will follow. Keeping Florida in-state coaches away won’t happen. Regardless of geographical location, opposing coaches won’t simply give up after his Kentucky commitment. Having Mac Jones in his ear will help. UK is in uncharted waters. I can’t remember a rising sophomore ever committing to the football Wildcats. I also can’t remember watching a more physically gifted football player at his age.
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©July 30th, 2015 @ 4:28pm
Where are those giant dice from Commonwealth Staidum when you need them?! 2018 5-star wide receiver Jermaine Eskridge has committed to Kentucky, jumping the gun and shocking everyone with the news on Twitter:
— Jermaine Eskridge (@Iam_Jermaine4) July 30, 2015
Eskridge is considered the 2nd best wide receiver and the 26th best player in the 2018 class and held offers from Ohio State, Florida, Florida State, Michigan, and several other major programs. Interestingly, 247 Sports Composite had him listed as a five-star earlier today, but they’ve taken down his Compsite ranking. Screenshots don’t lie, though:
It’s a long way until Signing Day 2018, but this is a HUGE moment for Mark Stoops and company. Although young, Eskridge’s talent and potential is through the roof, making this the biggest commitment of Mark Stoops’ tenure.
CELEBRATE GOOD TIMES COME ON
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©July 30th, 2015 @ 4:00pm
Save big for one more week with these deals from our friends at Sleep Outfitters! Twin sets as low as $199. Sealey Pillowtops with gel foam for $499 plus a FREE HDTV! The offer is almost up, so hurry!
By far the biggest recruiting news today is 5-star WR Jermaine Eskridge’s big announcement, which he claims will be big for both him and the BBN. The Tampa, Florida native is considered the 2nd best wide receiver in the 2018 class, and while it’s a long, long time until Signing Day 2018, just getting his commitment will be a huge momentum boost for the program.
Why is Eskridge apparently willing to take a chance on the BBN? Mark Stoops, Vince Marrow, and the entire football staff I’m sure have a lot to do with it, but he also likes the scenery around campus:
I'm in love with Kentucky snowbunnies😩😍
— Jermaine Eskridge (@Iam_Jermaine4) July 30, 2015
This is that moment you remember he’s a sophomore in high school.
UPDATE: We’re hearing it may happen sooner than tomorrow morning, so sit tight and get those dice ready…
Also announcing tomorrow: 3-star ILB Erroll Thompson. He’s down to Mississippi State, Alabama, Michigan, Kentucky, and Louisville, and although the Bulldogs are considered the favorite, it’s still nice to see the Cats in that type of company. We’ll find out for sure tomorrow at 11:30 a.m. ET.
Also on Yahtzee Watch this weekend: 2017 4-star RB Mohamed Ibrahim from Olney, Maryland, the 18th best running back in the his class. He’ll be on campus for an official visit starting tomorrow. Double Yahtzee to start the weekend off right?
Meanwhile, Jeff Borzello polled 50 college coaches on their top players in the 2016 class, and the results are not surprising. Harry Giles ran away with the ballot, with 115 points, including 29 of 50 first-place votes. The next closest? Jayson Tatum with 50 points and 5 first-place votes. Here’s what one coach had to say about Giles:
“Harry Giles embraces the idea of being the nation’s top player, and plays with the passion of a guy who’s got a point to prove.”
It’s comforting to hear Giles will play his senior season outside of North Carolina at Oak Hill Academy in Virginia, but it’ll take more than that for UK to pry him from Coach K’s claws. A good showing from the BBN at the Marshall County Hoop Fest in December for Oak Hill’s games couldn’t hurt.
Other UK targets in the top ten: 3. Josh Jackson; 5. Malik Monk; 6. De’Aaron Fox; 7. Dennis Smith, Jr.; 8. Miles Bridges; T9. Markelle Fultz.
Yesterday, Calipari called the 2016 recruiting class one of the best he’s ever seen. Jerry Meyer agreed, calling the 2016 “unbelievable,” comparing it to the 2004 class (Dwight Howard, LaMarcus Aldridge, Rajon Rondo, Rudy Gay, etc.) and the 2007 class (Derrick Rose, Kevin Love, Blake Griffin, James Harden, etc.):
“I’ve never had this experience in ranking guys,” Meyer said. “I would see a prospect in the 2016 class for the first time and I would think to myself, ‘That’s a top-75 player.’ Then I would look to slot him in the rankings and he would end up at No. 130. It’s almost like there are twice as many good players in this class as in others.”
If UK can land even a few of the top guys, the talent boost will be incredible.
Markelle Fultz has a new mixtape. I think you’ll like it:
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©July 30th, 2015 @ 2:56pm
And now, for some unfortunate football news. The Cats’ Pause’s Jon Hale is reporting that senior safety Glenn Faulkner will have to miss this season after undergoing surgery for a right knee injury.
This is just the latest injury to plague Faulkner, who came to UK as one of Joker’s biggest recruits. He was listed as the fourth-string cornerback in the latest depth chart and played primarily on special teams last season.
You hate to hear this type of news. Best of luck to Glenn in his recovery.
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©July 30th, 2015 @ 2:32pm
The 2015 season is little over a month away, but UK is already finalizing their schedule for 2016. According to FBSchedules.com, UK will host New Mexico State at Commonwealth Stadium on September 17, 2016.
The Cats will pay the Aggies $1.3 million for the game, which completes the 2016 non-conference schedule:
- September 3: vs. Southern Miss, Commonwealth Stadium
- September 17: vs. New Mexico State, Commonwealth Stadium
- November 19: vs. Austin Peay, Commonwealth Stadium
- November 26: @ Louisville, Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium
As Freddie Maggard points out, New Mexico State is coached by Doug Martin, who both played (1981-1984) and coached (1986-1987) at UK.
Bring it on, Aggies.
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©July 30th, 2015 @ 2:00pm
Kentucky’s Yahtzee storm of commitments has turned some heads this week, including that of Jermaine Eskridge, a 2018 five-star wide receiver from Tampa, Florida. Eskridge first started flirting with the BBN on Twitter yesterday, but now his tweets are getting downright explicit. He just posted that tomorrow could be a “huge day” for himself and the BBN:
Tomorrow is going to be huge day for me and the BBN so be ready fans😈🙏🏽
— Jermaine Eskridge (@Iam_Jermaine4) July 30, 2015
“Huge” is an understatement. The 6’3″ 180 lbs. Eskridge is considered the second best wide receiver in the 2018 class and 26th best player overall. Landing him would be like landing John Wall in terms of impact on the program. Yes, getting him to stay on until Signing Day in 2018 will be difficult, but the momentum his commitment would bring to UK would be unparalleled.
Patrick Loney says the announcement could come early tomorrow morning, so stay tuned…
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©July 30th, 2015 @ 1:30pm
Yesterday, we shared the story about William Meredith, the Hillview man who gunned down a drone flying over his property on Sunday. Meredith claims the drone, which had a camera attached, was hovering over his backyard, where his young daughters were laying by the pool. After he shot it down, the owner of the drone drove up to confront him, and Meredith said if he crossed onto his property, he’d shoot him too.
The story definitely got you guys talking, and today, David, the (alleged) owner of the drone, called in to KSR to give his side of the story, claiming that he and his friends were taking it out on a test run and the drone was simply flying by Meredith’s property, not hovering. David said his drone was only over Meredith’s property for 1.5 seconds, during which time Meredith shot it down. Just as you were starting to take David’s side, he yelled “Go Cards,” taking away any sympathy and accountability. The next caller claimed to know David, and said never to trust anything he says.
Who’s telling the truth: William or David? Was that even the real drone owner? Listen to KSR and judge for yourself. David calls in at the beginning of hour two:
While you’re at it, listen to hour one:
David said he would send Matt the video from the drone, so stay tuned…
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©July 30th, 2015 @ 1:00pm
Construction crews are frantically trying to finish the work on Commonwealth Stadium before September 5th’s opener, but today, they stopped for a brief break to enjoy a nice lunch courtesy of Mark Stoops and the UK football program. Stoops, who you can see on that ramp up there, stopped by to thank the crew for their hard work and maybe give them a pep talk as they enter the final stretch.
Enjoy the pics, via @UKAthletics.
Now get back to work. Seriously.
By Ally Tucker on ©July 30th, 2015 @ 12:00pm
The season is sadly now over, and the folks here at KSR love getting your input on things… relevant and bizarre. We have to get a little creative around here sometimes. Last summer I started a weekly series called “We Ask You Wednesdays,” that brought in some great responses from many readers via Twitter.
Each week, the question will change and we will hit on a variety of topics, mostly UK-related… but you never know. Each week the best responses will make it on to the website. This week’s twenty ninth volume of the “We Ask You Wednesday” allowed Kentucky fans to answer the following question via Twitter in 140 characters or less:
WHAT ARE YOUR FAVORITE NEW ADDITIONS TO THE NEW COMMONWEALTH STADIUM… OR WHAT WOULD YOU ADD IF YOU COULD DESIGN PART OF IT?
That’s awfully fancy.
@AllyTuckerKSR Donato’s pizza instead of Papa John’s obvi 🍕🍕🍕
— Havana Childers ✌️ (@HChilders326) July 30, 2015
I definitely think chair backs should be like oxygen… for everyone.
@AllyTuckerKSR if blue chair backs are put everywhere, make the student section around recruiting room with white chair backs
— Wildcat Eye (@UofKSTAT) July 29, 2015
Did you design that?
— Wildcat Eye (@UofKSTAT) July 29, 2015
And for all a good night!
@AllyTuckerKSR blue chair backs for everyone and entire stadium!
— Wildcat Eye (@UofKSTAT) July 29, 2015
I think there would certainly be more dancing
— Doug Dalton (@dugthedrug) July 29, 2015
I’m afraid that’ll never happen.
@AllyTuckerKSR lower concession stand prices would be a nice touch
— Jared Hatfield (@jhattrey1) July 29, 2015
White turf? Hmm… interesting.
— Ben (@bragg_ben) July 29, 2015
Well there you have it. Welcome back!
@AllyTuckerKSR My favorite addition this year will have to be me! I haven’t been since college to commonwealth.
— CouchCat (@scottcouch14) July 29, 2015
I agree. It’s the most beloved thing at b-ball games. Why not bring it to football?
@AllyTuckerKSR I would add a Rupp Arena ice cream stand. Who wouldn’t?!?
— Chris Linville (@WChrisL) July 29, 2015
I don’t really understand exactly why… but I still love it regardless.
— JimTheChin (@jimthechin) July 29, 2015
I thought for sure I would look at your Twitter page and see that it was a 7 year old. Haha.
@AllyTuckerKSR water fountains that dispense Hawiian Punch
— Alan M Young (@AY68) July 29, 2015
I think this is a common wish from the fans.
@AllyTuckerKSR make the UK at midfield larger. 40 to 40
— Al Courington (@alcourington) July 29, 2015
Amen to that.
@AllyTuckerKSR I’m hoping touchdown catches by UK tight ends will be the best addition to Commonwealth this year.
— Kevin Faris (@KevinWFaris) July 29, 2015
BEST ANSWER OF THE WEEK:
I still don’t believe this exists, but I’m intrigued nonetheless.
— Bucky Small Hooves (@BuckyHooves) July 29, 2015