Good morning BBN! Happy Friday!
You’ve only got a few more hours of work or school until the weekend, so stick around with us here at KSR to get all of the Kentucky sports information you need to get you by in the most ridiculous way possible.
We’ll start with a bit of unfortunate news for the Kentucky football program.
Matt House to the Chiefs?
During his National Signing Day press conference on Wednesday, head coach Mark Stoops said he had just gotten off the phone with someone from the NFL with interest in one of his young up-and-coming coaches.
Little did we know, that call was concerning a pretty important piece of the Kentucky defense.
According to ESPN’s Field Yates, Kentucky defensive coordinator Matt House is expected to leave the program and take the linebackers coach job with the Kansas City Chiefs.
Source: the Chiefs are expected to hire University of Kentucky defensive coordinator Matt House as their linebackers coach.
— Field Yates (@FieldYates) February 8, 2019
Sources tell KSR that while this decision isn’t final quite yet, it is “very possible.”
ESPN’s @FieldYates us reporting UK DC Matt House will likely take a job with the Kansas City Chiefs
Source tells KSR that this isn’t final yet but very possiblehttps://t.co/myNHsX8OXP
— Matt Jones (@KySportsRadio) February 8, 2019
Under House, the Kentucky defense made a jump to historic heights this past season, allowing just 16.85 points an 337.9 yards per contest. They finished the year ranked No. 6 in scoring defense and No. 23 in the nation in total offense allowed in 2018.
If this holds true, that’s a significant loss for the program.
Eight Wildcats invited to NFL Combine
Part of the reason why Matt House is such a hot commodity has to do with how well he developed the NFL prospects lining his roster, specifically on the defensive side of the ball.
Over the last year, we saw a significant jump from several key Wildcats with NFL potential, and it has led to a historic accomplishment for the entire school.
Eight Kentucky Wildcats have been invited to the upcoming NFL Combine starting on February 26.
The participants? Josh Allen, Lonnie Johnson, Mike Edwards, Darius West, Derrick Baity, CJ Conrad, Jordan Jones, and Benny Snell.
Congrats to these 8?? Wildcats who have been invited to the @NFL Combine in Indianapolis, beginning Feb. 26!@JoshAllen41_ @uk_db29 @cjconrad1 @M__Edwards7 @Lonnie30johnson
Jordan Jones@benny_snell @D_1west25 #WeAreUK #BringIt pic.twitter.com/m1c8Yom9i2
— Kentucky Football (@UKFootball) February 7, 2019
KSR will be there to give you all the highlights and interviews you need.
Until then, congratulations to each of them on the incredible accomplishment. They continue to make the Big Blue Nation proud.
Former Wildcats involved at the NBA trade deadline
If you’re a fan of the NBA, yesterday was everything you could’ve wanted and more when the NBA trade deadline officially rolled around.
Over the last two days, the NBA saw a total of eighteen trades made, ranging from stars to role players and everything in-between.
Caught in the chaos of the deadline were several former Kentucky players in the NBA, for both good and bad.
With New Orleans Pelicans star forward Anthony Davis, the former Wildcat’s trade demand was not met at the deadline and he will have to play out the rest of the year in New Orleans.
Why? ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reports that the Pelicans are holding out hope for the Boston Celtics to become eligible to trade for Davis this summer and offer them a package that defeats the plethora of young talent offered by the Los Angeles Lakers.
Trade deadline passes — and Boston will get its chance to trade for Anthony Davis.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 7, 2019
Wojnarowski reports that Davis will, in fact, play out the rest of the year despite injury concerns and/or diminished trade value when the market opens back up this summer.
After considering the possibility of shutting down All-NBA center Anthony Davis, the New Orleans Pelicans plan to allow Davis back into the lineup for the rest of the season, league sources tell ESPN.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 8, 2019
Outside of Davis, former Kentucky star Brandon Knight was traded from the Houston Rockets to the Cleveland Cavaliers, while Skal Labissiere was traded from Sacramento to Portland.
Enes Kanter of the New York Knicks was also waived by his current team, giving him the opportunity to sign with a contender for the rest of the season.
Rajon Rondo sinks the Celtics
After seeing his name involved in several trade rumors, specifically for Anthony Davis, former Kentucky guard Rajon Rondo wanted to let the world know why it would have been a mistake to move him at the deadline.
The former Wildcat headed to Boston’s TD Garden for the first time as a Los Angeles Laker and finished with the highlight of the night.
Down one with the clock ticking down, Rondo came up with the loose ball at the left elbow, rose up for the contested floater, and drilled it as time expired.
RONDO. GAME. pic.twitter.com/AjG34xhn2u
— Rob Perez (@WorldWideWob) February 8, 2019
Rondo for the win.
PJ Washington breaks down the Kentucky defense on the SEC Network
Kentucky forward PJ Washington has been one of the key reasons for the Wildcats’ recent hot stretch of nine consecutive victories and wins in 12 of the team’s last 13 games.
Washington joined the SEC Network set yesterday afternoon to break down his team’s recent upswing, the overall defensive intensity, and how he has been able to take the next step as the leader of this young Kentucky team.
Take a look at the star Wildcat’s impressive interview:
The Cats will take on Mississippi State in Starkville tomorrow afternoon.
Bob Stoops is getting back into coaching
Speaking of coaching changes, Mark Stoops’ brother and former Oklahoma head coach Bob Stoops has taken the head coach and general manager position in Dallas…. for the city’s brand new XFL affiliate.
The official XFL account announced the news yesterday afternoon.
— XFL (@xfl2020) February 7, 2019
Here he was at his introductory press conference:
It's officially official.
— Sooner Gridiron (@soonergridiron) February 7, 2019
I figured we’d see Bob roaming the sidelines as a head coach again, but I’d be lying if I said I expected it to be for an XFL team.
There are eight teams scheduled to compete when the XFL season opens in “January or February” of 2020.
We’re all really jealous of Penny Hardaway
Back in January, Memphis coach Penny Hardaway said other coaches are “jealous” of him and “throwing jabs” at his basketball program because he and assistant coach Mike Miller didn’t pay their dues in the coaching ranks before getting Division-1 jobs.
“I’m getting used to it as a coach because there’s a little jealousy from a lot of these coaches around the country,” Hardaway said. “I do understand that because we are NBA players and didn’t have any experience as college coaches. So we didn’t quote, unquote, ‘Pay our dues.’ So these college coaches and their so-called boys in the media are going to always throw jabs at us.”
It was a quote that sparked laughter nationwide, especially considering his team was sitting at 13-7 on the year with zero big wins and/or reasons for significant optimism to close out the regular season.
And goodness has that backfired for Hardaway and the Memphis program.
Since that comment, the Tigers have taken home three consecutive losses against Tulsa, South Florida, and Cincinnati, with the third coming last night in front of dozens of fans agains a ranked Bearcat squad.
Penny is putting butts in the seats. Dozens and dozens are watching Memphis take on a top 25 team. pic.twitter.com/6L5o21fZuN
— T.J. Walker (@TJWalkerRadio) February 8, 2019
His team is now 13-10 on the year, and any hope they had for an NCAA Tournament bid is now gone.
Couldn’t have happened to a more likable guy.
KSR is LIVE in an hour
Matt Jones and the Kentucky Sports Radio crew will be LIVE this morning at Barleycorns in Cold Spring from 10 a.m. to noon.
KSR Radio is LIVE tomorrow at Barleycorns in Cold Spring tomorrow from 10-Noon
Northern Kentucky come join us!
— Matt Jones (@KySportsRadio) February 8, 2019
We’ll see you then.