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November 26th, 2014

Jack Givens announces the “Wildcat Legends” fine art series

Pratt final

Up first: Mike Pratt

Since his playing days at UK in the mid-70’s, Kentucky All-American Jack “Goose” Givens is appreciative of all the support and love he has continually received from Wildcat fans. In fact, the same could be said for many other former UK men’s basketball stars – all remain very popular, and are grateful to talk with fans if not sign memorabilia for them.

The problem is, no comprehensive artistic memorabilia tribute to UK’s legendary stars has been properly formulated and done in the right way, and with the player’s permission – until now.

Announcing the “Wildcat Legends” Fine Art Series, which Givens hopes the BBN will feel IS that proper tribute to honor their living stars of the past.

Set to begin next week, featured “Legends” include Mike Pratt, Cotton Nash, Dan Issel, Kevin Grevey, Kyle Macy and Tony Delk. (More will be announced at a later date.) The “Legends” schedule calls for 3 to 4 art releases of these stars each basketball season for the next few years, each approximately 1 month apart during the season.

“We hope this Series properly reflects the rich history and tradition of Kentucky Basketball,” said Givens, who was instrumental in bringing the project together, “and we further hope it properly honors those elite players like Nash, Issel and Pratt who helped make UK the greatest program in college basketball.”

“Wildcat Legends” will be a series of fine art prints from individual player paintings, highlighting living stars from the 60’s through the 90’s, and features a compilation of action poses of the star during his time on the court (see attached photo of the Pratt art).

The series will be created by native Kentuckian and national sports artist, David Bryan Blondell. Over the past 2 years Blondell has completed beautiful, commissioned artwork for Coach Calipari and his 2012 championship team, and for Coach Hall and the 1978 title squad; fans may have seen both on display at games in Rupp last season.

Reasonably-priced commemorative prints and posters will be produced for each player’s art. Each reproduction will be from an original painting by Blondell, and will be colorful, photo-realistic compositions that seek to capture the player’s likeness and spirit. 50 large, high-quality Limited Edition fine art prints will be numbered and signed by the featured player at his art’s unveiling ceremony, held before a game in Rupp Arena. (Smaller posters of the art will also be available for signing at the event.)

Excited and pleased with the number of great players who have agreed to be featured, the artist also insisted that Givens be included as well. “Jack’s far too modest to presume he should be part of this,” Blondell said, “and I told him that I’m honored to create the Series, but only if he were also featured. No such tribute would be complete without the Goose.”

The first Wildcat honored will be former All-American and current UK radio personality, Mike Pratt. His ‘Art Release Ceremony’ is scheduled in the Rupp mall foodcourt from 4:30 – 6:30 before the Texas game next Friday, December 5th, and Mike will be on hand to autograph his art prints for all fans until 30 minutes before the 7:00 pm tip-off. “I’m thrilled to have been asked to be a part of this,” Pratt said, “and it’s even a greater honor to be the one to lead it off.”

First team All-American Kevin Grevey agreed. “I am excited and honored to be a member of the ‘Wildcat Legends’ Fine Art Series,” Grevey said. “Having seen and enjoyed much of David’s previous artwork, I’m sure these prints will be coveted by our incredible fan base that makes Kentucky basketball so special.”

Co-produced by “Your Frame of Mind Galleries” in Lexington, get additional details and upcoming release dates on their website, www.YourFrameOfMind.biz, or on their Facebook page: www.facebook.com/yourframeofmind.

(You can also follow the day-to-day progress of each player’s painting from start-to-finish as Blondell creates it. To do so, follow him on Twitter: @BlondellArt or on Facebook: www.facebook.com/blondellart)

“I hope this elite tribute Series will be something all UK fans can be proud of,” Givens concluded.

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A Few Football Practice Notes from Yesterday

No red allowed! (@JohnWDRB)

No red allowed! (@JohnWDRB)

–  Every time UK plays UL in anything now a days, we talk about how the rivalry has lost its luster with this generation of kids, for a variety of reasons.  I can assure you that will not be the case for this football team.  Neal Brown said they’ve been taking some extra time out of team meetings to educate the young guys about the significance off the rivalry, one that Brown played in, as well as John Schlarman and Chad Scott.

–  Patrick Towles doesn’t need to be told about the significance of the rivalry.  Opting out of the red practice jersey for QBs is just the tip of the hate Towles has for the dirty birds.  Jordan Swindle told Kyle Tucker, “I don’t know if there’s a guy on this team that dislikes Louisville more than Pat Towles.  I love that guy.”  That’s the spirit!

–  Win or go home.  In college football, you rarely get ‘win or go home’ opportunities, but that’s exactly what’s at stake this weekend.  Brown hopes that’s more than enough to fuel the fire of his offense, “Listen, I want a hungry outfit. I want a hungry group that’s practicing today,” is what Brown told his group before starting the week of practice.  After getting a Bye to let the batteries recharge, he’s accepting no excuses from his squad.

–  A season-defining game.  It really all comes down to this.  There’s been good and bad, but how they end the year will determine how they’re remembered by the BBN.  Towles is not shying away from the challenge.

“We win on Saturday, it’s a successful season, we go play in a bowl game and everybody forgets about the last five or six.  So we’re looking forward to this one.  We’re excited about a good opportunity.”

 


Start your day with this screenshot of Cal’s face on SportsCenter

What kind of face is that, Coach? It looks like a face we’ll use over and over again on this site, I know that.


Pump your arms for the last KSR before Thanksgiving (Wednesday Show Thread)

Matt Jones and Ryan Lemond will be on the air one last time before breaking on Thursday for turkey and fun with the family. So tune in this morning to hear a recap of last night’s win over UT Arlington, plus a preview of what’s to come Saturday afternoon in Papa John’s Stadium.

Join in on the fun by calling (502) 571-1080.

Listen to Kentucky Sports Radio

KSR Affiliate List

WBGN (1340am): Bowling Green
WTCO (1450am): Campbellsville
WAIN (93.9fm): Columbia
WHIR (1230am): Danville
WCLU (1490am): Glasgow
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WTUK (105.1fm): Harlan
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WFTG (1400am): London
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On Delay (ALL TIMES LISTED EASTERN)…

WCBL (1290am): Benton, 12-2pm
WVHI (1330am): Evansville, IN, 5-7pm
WMTL (870am): Leitchfield, 11am-1pm
WLBQ (1570am): Morgantown, 3-5pm
WRIL (106.3fm): Middlesboro, Thur 8-10pm


BTI’s Rants and Ramblings: Any UK-UL Records to be Broken?

This year marks the 21st anniversary of the modern Governor’s Cup and we have seen some amazing performances from both sides over the years.  Below you will find some of the individual and team records since the series renewed.  And my question is fairly simple: Which of these records is most likely to be broken on Saturday?

I think the Louisville records are pretty safe, as those are some pretty absurd stats.  But I don’t think the UK rushing and receiving records are totally out of the question.  Can Boom Williams not rush for 124 yards?  Can Javess Blue not have 151 yards receiving?  I think if the offense is clicking that 1 of those 2 records could be broken.  And for UL?  If any of their records are broken, that will mean a very long day for the Cats.

SCORING
Louisville: 59 (2006)
Kentucky: 68 (1998)

MARGIN OF VICTORY
Louisville: 31 (2006)
Kentucky: 34 (1998)

RUSHING
Louisville: Frank Moreau (181 yards, 1999)
Kentucky: Derrick Homer (123 yards, 1998)

PASSING
Louisville: Chris Redman (368 yards, 1998)
Kentucky: Tim Couch (498 yards, 1998)

RECEIVING
Louisville: Zeke Parker (184 yards, 2001)
Kentucky: Craig Yeast (150 yards, 1998)

FIELD GOALS
Louisville: Chris Philpott (3, 2010)
Kentucky: Taylor Begley (3, 2002)


KSR’s Top 10 Tweets of the Day

Catspause

Catspause

It’s time again for KSR’s Top Tweets of the Day. We will focus most of our attention on Kentucky sports-centric tweets but, as usual, there are no limits to our madness. You can participate by using hashtags such as #BBN #KSR #KSRTop10 or just by simply tweeting @KYsportsradio.

#10 Corey M. Peters

I feel like that isn’t a very good secret. =[

 

 

 

 

#9 Julia Ritchie

What? Scientific Research? I quit.

 

 

 

 

#8 Matt Jones

How could you!? And on Louisville hate week, too.

 

 

 

 

#7 jacrosse

I would pay good money for that.

 

 

 

 

#6 Larry Wells 7⃣0⃣

 

 

 

 

#5 BackdoorSlider

We never would condone violence at KSR, but I do see the resemblance here.

 

 

 

 

#4 Damien Harris

What did we learn?

 

 

 

 

#3 Andrew Cassady

I think he’s going to need a bigger camera. Or at least a wider lens.

 

 

 

 

#2 Trey Lyles and ✨Prínce Charmíng✨

I always knew there would be a fight between football and basketball. It was just a matter of time.

 

 

 

 

#1 Brock Childers

I’m scared.

@Sealey_KSR


November 25th, 2014

Nine notes from something that’s becoming unbelievable

Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

I mean, what can you say? For the sixth game in a row, Kentucky steamrolled their opponent and looked pretty much invincible. Behind strong defense, guard play, and a couple of hot-handed freshmen, the Cats took care of business before Thanksgiving break, rolling UT-Arlington 92-44. Let’s break down every beautiful second.

Once again, it was a balanced affair

Platoons promote balance, and so far this season, it’s worked. Tonight, six Cats scored in double figures, and no Cats played more than 21 minutes. To Cal, that says it all. “The story is you have ten guys sharing minutes. That’s the whole story,” Cal said. “Why is that happening? Because they’re allowing it to happen. Is anybody being hurt by this? No.”

There were some tweaks with the platoons, but Calipari said that’s because he told the players to sub out their teammates if they weren’t playing with energy. “Now, they must respect the minutes they’re getting,” Cal said. “If not, they’re going to get less because the guy on the bench is just going to go in for him, say I’m not giving you minutes if you’re not going to play. Compete. Quit being tentative. Play hard, or I’m going back in.”

© Mark Zerof

© Mark Zerof

Karl Towns finally had the complete game he’s been looking for

Karl Towns has been impressive on defense so far this season, but we’ve yet to see him show off his skills on offense like he did in the Bahamas. Towns recorded his first career double-double tonight, with 13 points off perfect 5-5 shooting from the floor and 11 rebounds. He also had four assists, three blocks, and a steal. Maybe the most impressive part? He did that all in 17 minutes. “Karl really played better today,” Cal said. “But now he’s missing free throws.” Something tells me you’ll see KAT in the gym late tonight.

“We don’t see each other as a basketball team,” Karl said on the radio after the game. “We look at each other as a family. Willie, Dakari, they are my brothers.”

Devin Booker’s hands are still red hot

After going 1-for-11 from behind the arc in the first three games, Devin Booker has been on fire, shooting 12-of-17 from three-point land in the past three games. Booker led all scorers for the second game in a row, with 19 points, including five threes. In the first half, he had just as many points as the entire UT-Arlington team. Even more, Calipari said that Devin’s buying in on defense, which has changed his game completely.

Most surprising stat of the night: Dakari’s free throw shooting

Coming into the game, Dakari was 12-25 from the free throw line. Tonight, he was 12-14. What was the difference? Maybe it was the Yip Lady, or maybe it was some cold hard truth from Cal. “I’m happy for him, he does want to play and he knows I’m not playing him at the end of the game if he can’t make free throws,” Cal said. Whatever it was, it worked. Keep it up, Dakari.

Josh Hopkins was the Y, and it was great

A dream fulfilled.

Even sick, Alex found a way to help

Tonight was Alex Poythress’ first game back from illness, but you could tell he was still under the weather. “Alex was sick today, you knew he was going to struggle,” Cal said after the game. Even so, Poythress pulled down nine rebounds and had four blocks and four points, and seemed to come to life a little bit in the second half. The three spot is really the only one still in flux on both platoons, but at least that gives us something to nitpick.

UT Arlington’s coach is like the voice inside our head

After the game, UT-Arlington’s head coach Scott Cross joked that, for his squad, at least it was “all downhill from here.” Cross said it was impossible to prepare for UK’s size, even if he made his guys stand on chairs. Then, he said the little thing we’re all thinking but still too scared to say.

“I think it is very possible for them to go undefeated,” Cross said. “The way they’re playing right now, I find it hard to believe that anybody could beat them right now.”

I think that calls for some dunks.

How can you not root for this?

As I said earlier, I’m not sure there are words for what we’re seeing this team do right now. Defensively, this is something special, and tonight, Calipari said they can still be better. “This team has a chance to be one of those teams you talk about defensively – like of all-time, if they choose to be,” Cal told reporters. Let’s take a minute to sit and appreciate that.

The best part is the stuff you won’t hear from many national writers: this perfect storm is happening because the players want it to. “In this day and age, every one of these kids has pro aspirations and pro potential, and they’re draftable players, and they’re doing this for each other. This is crazy,” Cal said. “In our society, where everybody talks about the me and mine and narcissism and all that, why wouldn’t you root for this to happen and be good?”

No really, how can you not root for this?


Watch the highlights from the W

Well that was fun.


No one has ever loved being the ‘Y’ more than Josh Hopkins

@ukphotogs

Hey Josh… Best moment ever or BEST MOMENT EVER????


Listen to the KSR postgame show

It was an all-around great performance tonight from the boys in white as the Cats coasted past the UT Arlington Mavericks to close out the Cawood Classic and pre-Thanksgiving basketball. Now all that’s left to do is talk about it, and I have just the place for you.

Tune in to the KSR postgame show on 630 WLAP in Lexington or 840 WHAS in Louisville.  You can also tune in via the iHeartRadio app right here.

It should get started soon. Discuss below.


Devin Booker is on fire in his last three games

devin-booker

It’s safe to say Devin Booker found his stroke from outside. After beginning the season 1-for-11 through his first three games, Booker settled in, got his feet right and has hit 12-of-17 from downtown.

That’s quite a turnaround:

First three games: .090%
Last three games: .706%

So all you fans out there who worried Booker couldn’t shoot when he was colder than a polar bear’s balls, feel free to apologize in the comments section.

booker-stats2


UK’s halftime lead was its largest since the LSU beatdown of ’96

Kentucky’s 55-12 halftime lead over the Mavericks was its largest halftime lead since 1996 and the second-largest in UK history. That ’96 team took an unbelievable 86-42 lead into the break on the road against LSU in Baton Rouge in the 13th-highest scoring half of college basketball ever.

Remember that? It was wild:


UT Arlington’s Coach Cross on UK and the possibility of 40-0

scott-cross

“Obviously that was a tough one for us,” UT Arlington head coach Scott Cross said after the game. “They play the game the right way. That’s what’s really impressive. All of those McDonald’s All-Americans playing together, it’s really impressive what Coach Cal gets them to do.”

Cross joked about his team’s inability to simulate playing against a team like the Wildcats. He said he could’ve had his players stand on chairs in practice and still not replicate the size they saw tonight in Kentucky.

It is very possible they could go undefeated,” said Cross, when asked about UK potentially going 40-0. “If they play the way they did, together, they’re not going to lose.”

He believes it would take a really poor shooting night from Kentucky, and even then it would have to be a powerhouse opponent to knock them off.

“I find it hard for them to be beat if they playing the way they’re playing right now.”


Watch the postgame press conference


Kentucky 92, UT Arlington 44

arlington-box