Kentucky Sports Radio

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Today on KSR: Beat Kansas and get Tyler Herro


Tonight, Kentucky will undergo its first major test of the regular season when they take on the fourth-ranked Kansas Jayhawks in the Champions Classic. That’s over 12 hours from now, so here’s what can you expect as the day slowly drags on.

We’ll break down the Jayhawks

Kansas may not have Josh Jackson or Frank Mason III anymore, but they do have Devonte’ Graham. The senior guard is one of the best players in the country and containing him will be a major challenge for Quade Green and/or Shai Alexander, who have yet to impress on defense.

Outside of Graham, Kansas is still a mystery. They started four guards on Friday vs. Tennessee State, but one of them wasn’t Malik Newman, who lost his starting job to freshman Marcus Garrett. Five-star freshman Billy Preston didn’t even play after being suspended one game for breaking curfew. And while the Jayhawks hit 60% of their shots, including 43% from three, they had 20 turnovers. With only one game to look at thus far, it’s hard to know exactly what to expect from Kansas other than they’ve got a lot more experience than we do; however, if we’ve seen one thing over the years, it’s that elite freshmen tend to rise to elite competition. So, who knows.

Regardless, here are the stats if you’d like to compare them (keep in mind Vermont and Utah Valley are much better than Tennessee State):

STAT KENTUCKY KANSAS
Points per game 73 92
Opp. points per game 66 56
Rebounds per game 37 45
Assists per game 16 23
Blocks per game 6 7
Steals per game 7 8
Field Goal % 42.6% 60%
3-Point Field Goal % 33.3% 42.9%
Free Throw % 73.9% 72.7%
Opp. Field Goal % 43.0% 32.8%
Opp. 3-Pt Field Goal % 31.9% 34.8%

Sacha Killeya-Jones’ mother is feeling good about the matchup with Udoka Azubuike

Sacha’s looked great so far this season. I like the way his mom’s thinking.

Looking to party with the BBN before the game?

If you’re in Chicago and looking for the Big Blue Nation, the UK Alumni Association is meeting at the Kaiser Tiger (1415 W. Randolph St). Doors open at 11 a.m and a shuttle bus will be available to take fans to the United Center. For directions and additional details, visit www.ukalumni.net/championsclassic2017.

4:30 PM: Tyler Herro announces his decision

It’s been a whirlwind courtship with the four-star shooting guard, who will announce his decision at 3:30 p.m. CT/4:30 p.m. ET. The announcement comes on the heels of his official visit to Kentucky, and, at this point, it would be an absolute shock if he doesn’t pick the Cats.

We’ll do our best to find a live stream of the announcement as long as you guys promise not to crash the website. Deal?

We’ll hear from Eddie Gran and the offense

It’s a basketball heavy day, but you’ll get a football fix this evening from Eddie Gran and the offense. ICYMI yesterday, Stoops gave a good rundown of how Gran helped Benny Snell snap out of his early season sophomore slump. He’s had three touchdowns in each of the last three games:

How Eddie Gran Helped Benny Snell out of a Slump

7:00 PM: KSR Pregame Show

I’m sure your family won’t mind if you listen during dinner.

9:30 PM (if we’re lucky), ESPN: Kentucky vs. Kansas

Even though No. 1 Duke and No. 2 Michigan State are both ranked higher, No. 7 Kentucky vs. No. 4 Kansas drew the second half of the doubleheader because ESPN knows UK fans will stay up. Caffeine is your friend this afternoon.

I’ll leave you with this great picture of De’Aaron Fox and John Wall after last night’s Wizards/Kings game. Wall had 21 points and 9 assists to Fox’s 10 points and 5 assists in the Wizards’ 110-92 win, but mentor and the mentee shared a cool moment afterwards:

More of that in today’s BBNBA recap, which is coming your way in just a bit…

Article written by Mrs. Tyler Thompson

No, I will not make you a sandwich, but you can follow me on Twitter @MrsTylerKSR or email me.

9 responses to “Today on KSR: Beat Kansas and get Tyler Herro”

  1. Blue Jesus

    Shai G-A hasn’t impressed you on defense? I think he’s been a bright spot on that side of the ball, and the reason for most of our steals and, therefore, offensive spurts.

  2. inside info2

    I can’t believe you didn’t mention Perry Ellis in your Kansas write-up. I hope our guys can contain him.

    1. runningunnin.454

      I think he died of old age….he played at Kansas from 1952 to 2016.

    2. CatesDuncan

      Lol

    3. J-Dub421

      Ellis has lost a step now that he has to use a walker.

  3. TonyMontana

    Malik Newman is a good example of a player that would have thrived here and under the direction of Cal would have most likely been a lottery pick, he’d be in the NBA right now. We’re talking the #1 PG in 2015. Instead he chooses the powerhouse club of Miss. St, who of course is known for cranking out numerous Point Guards into the NBA. Surprisingly that didnt work out, so he transfers… sits out a year and is now coming off the bench. Dont get me wrong, I wish the kid well, truly I do, but its just another example of a prospect overthinking his decision and losing. However, it could all work out and turnaround for him. The moral of the story is…. go with Kentucky. On another note…. I do not feel optimistic about our chances tonight vs Kansas. We are so inexperienced, but maybe the competition will help us step up our game.

  4. trumpetguy

    GREAT photo of Wall/Fox embracing after a competitive, real NBA game. I bet that photo shows up framed and hanging someplace on a wall around UK practice facility &/or offices. This photo is indicative of what can happen to a player, wherever he might come from, and casts his lot with UK and BBN.

  5. Jelleyjr

    Must admit, much swag on Hami’s UK coat!