Kentucky Sports Radio

University of Kentucky Basketball, Football, and Recruiting news brought to you in the most ridiculous manner possible.


The SEC is reviewing Dorian Baker’s hit on Kendall Beckwith

In his press conference today, Les Miles said he sent the tape of Dorian Baker’s hit on Kendall Beckwith to the league office and they are currently reviewing it. If you missed it, you can see it above.

There’s been a lot of talk as to whether or not it was helmet-to-helmet or targeting, and while I think it was a clean hit, Baker’s trash talking afterwards was pretty immature. After the game, Mark Stoops said he wants toughness and physical plays from his team, but not for selfish reasons:

“I just thought there was a lot of jawing going on at that point. I want toughness and I want physical play, but it can’t be for selfish reasons,” Stoop said. “There was a lot of jawing going on, on the field, and at that point we’ve just got to line up and go play football.”

Moving On To Mississippi State With Mark Stoops


Starting on the wrong foot was a recipe for disaster.

If Stoops has one regret from Saturday, it’s using some trickiness on the opening kickoff, “That’s something that in hindsight we would do differently.”  When facing a juggernaut on the road, mistakes are amplified and magnified.  Saturday’s early failures in execution created an uphill battle the Cats simply could not overcome.

The same could also be said about playing on CBS against the #1 team in the nation at home.  The stage is the biggest yet and it’s important to show the nation that this program hs changed for the better.

The Run D was bad, but Stoops still believes they improved.

Joker Phillips’ coaching staff made it a norm to praise players after getting their butts handed to them, making little to no logical sense.  Stoops pumped the brakes on giving too much praise, but after watching film the front seven looked much improved from weeks past.  “With the power run game, if you just take some of those explosive runs (away), it wasn’t that bad.  We had a good dose of some pretty good run fits in there and played more physical than we had been,” Stoops said today.

A big difference was the addition of Jabari Johnson to the DLine.  Johnson has had VERY little playing time in his career, but his larger frame at the ‘Jack’ linebacker (Bud’s position) gave them a little more “umph” on the front line.  They’re going to need it just as badly this week against a talented offensive line.

Miss State has played the Cats off a Bye Week Four Years in a Row

That’s just Grade A Mularky.  “We better talk to somebody.”  It’s above his pay grade, but I think Fake Lou

Players Gotta Make Plays

Football games can be won on a handful of good plays.  Ryan Timmons had the opportunity to make one on a perfectly thrown flag route, but he didn’t get his head around in time.  Timmons, and the rest of the offense’s young playmakers, will have to step up if they expect to pull off the shocker this weekend, “Some of our playmakers need to step up and compete at a high level, win some one-on-ones and make some plays.”

Mark Stoops’ perfectly timed horse reference

Saturday’s game will be the biggest game most guys have ever played in.  When asked about their mindset and emotions, Stoops slipped in a wonderful Keeneland reference, “I’d rather say ‘WHOA’ than ‘Giddy up.'”

Kicking ‘em while they’re down

For the first time all season, the Cats’ resiliency failed to carry them through their early mistakes.  Part of that Stoops attributes to the magnification of mistakes on the road.  They’re also very young and many of those guys have never been stuck so far behind the 8-ball.  After working so hard to get the team to believe in themselves, he’s concerned that they could start doubting themselves again.

“I have no reason to believe that, though. I have a good feel that we’ll bounce back.”

That’s the spirit, Stoops.


For UK to upset Mississippi State, “our playmakers need to step up”

(Steve Blake/USA Today)

(Steve Blake/USA Today)

For Kentucky to have a shot of upsetting #1 Mississippi State on Saturday, they’ll have to play flawlessly. Especially the playmakers. Today, Mark Stoops told reporters he is expecting more from the playmakers on his team. “If we’re going to compete vs. the number one team in the country, some of our playmakers need to step up and make plays,” Stoops said, using Ryan Timmons as an example. “Ryan needs to continue to improve. He needs to compete at a higher level. We need him to.”

After starting the season off hot, Timmons’ production has cooled considerably in recent games and his drops are becoming more notable than his catches. The sophomore wideout only had four catches for 24 yards against LSU. He’s still Kentucky’s leading receiver for the season, with 31 catches for 339 yards and two touchdowns.

With nothing to lose, more of this on Saturday, please:

Stoops says UK was trying to be “too cute” with short kickoff


Saturday was bad from the kickoff. Literally. UK lined up in a short kickoff formation as though they were going to fake an onside kick. It didn’t work. LSU ended up returning the kickoff for 49 yards, setting up an easy touchdown a few plays later. What the heck happened? Stoops said his team was trying to be “too cute.”

“That’s something that, in hindsight, we would do differently,” Stoops laughed. “Poor execution, poor call. We didn’t kick it where we were supposed to either. That’s one instance we were too cute there.

That was just one mistake in really bad game for the special teams. Fortunately, Stoops said that many of the errors on special teams can be fixed. “There’s mistakes that can be corrected and they will be corrected,” Stoops said. “They’re magnified against a very talented team on the road.”

UK at Missouri will kick off at 4 p.m. on the SEC Network

The SEC just announced that UK at Missouri will kick off at 4 p.m. ET on November 1 on the SEC Network. Here are the rest of the Week 10 SEC kickoff times:

Boom Williams not cleared to play yet, but “things look better”

Mark Zerof

Mark Zerof

Freshman running back Boom Williams went down after a helmet-to-helmet hit on Saturday night, and after the game, Mark Stoops said he had a head injury, but was able to fly back to Lexington with the team. Stoops just told reporters that Boom hasn’t been cleared to play yet, but “things look better.”

Heal up, buddy.

Watch Mark Stoops’ weekly press conference on WatchESPN


Mark Stoops is in the Wildcat Den for his weekly Kentucky football press conference. Tune in via WatchESPN to hear his comments about UK’s loss to LSU and the upcoming game against #1 Mississippi State.

If you can’t access WatchESPN or are too busy at work to sneak away, Nick Roush will be by with a rundown of Stoops comments later this afternoon and our friends at Kentucky Wildcats TV will have the entire video online for your viewing pleasure.

UK wants you to wear blue Saturday

UK wants you to wear blue Saturday


A blue out? We got this.

No major changes on this week’s depth chart

No major changes on this week’s depth chart



UK fell on their face in the bayou, but it’s a new week, which means a new depth chart heading into Saturday’s showdown with #1 Mississippi State. No major changes this week:


Tight end
85 Steven Borden, 6-3, 246, Sr-1L
80 Ronnie Shields, 6-5, 254, Sr-3L

Left tackle

77 Darrian Miller, 6-5, 292, Sr-3L
73 Kyle Meadows, 6-5, 294, Fr-RS

Left guard
75 Zach West, 6-4, 318, Jr-2L
68 Nick Haynes, 6-5, 319, Fr-RS

72 Jon Toth, 6-5, 301, So-1L
57 Zach Myers, 6-3, 287, So-Sq

Right guard
69 Ramsey Meyers, 6-5, 300, Fr-RS
74 Cole Mosier, 6-6, 348, Fr-RS

Right tackle
70 Jordan Swindle, 6-7, 306, Jr-2L
73 Kyle Meadows, 6-5, 294, Fr-RS

Wide receiver
9 Demarco Robinson, 5-10, 158, Sr-3L
6 Blake Bone, 6-5, 198, Fr-HS

Wide receiver
1 Ryan Timmons, 5-10, 195, So-1L
82 T.V. Williams, 5-10, 160, Fr-HS

Wide receiver
8 Javess Blue, 6-0, 191, Sr-1L
2 Dorian Baker, 6-3, 197, Fr-HS
81 Rashad Cunningham, 6-4, 225, Jr-1L

Wide receiver
87 Joey Herrick, 6-1, 197, Jr-1L
19 Garrett Johnson, 5-11, 176, Fr-HS

14 Patrick Towles, 6-5, 238, So-1L
12 Reese Phillips, 6-2, 218, Fr-RS or 7 Drew Barker, 6-3, 216, Fr-HS


39 D.J. Warren, 6-0, 251, Sr-3L
10 Jeff Witthuhn, 6-3, 246, So-Sq

Running back
5 Braylon Heard, 5-11, 189, Jr-Tr or 3 Jojo Kemp, 5-10, 194, So-1L
4 Mikel Horton 6-1, 230, Fr-HS
18 Stanley “Boom” Williams, 5-9, 200, Fr-HS


Defensive end
94 Za’Darius Smith, 6-6, 263, Sr-1L
91 Farrington Huguenin, 6-4, 275, Jr-2L

Defensive tackle
90 Melvin Lewis, 6-4, 320, Jr-JC
69 Matt Elam, 6-7, 375, Fr-HS

Defensive tackle

50 Mike Douglas, 6-4, 288, Sr-3L
67 Cory “C.J.” Johnson, 6-3, 299, Jr-JC or 96 Regie Meant, 6-4, 286, Fr-RS

Defensive end/Linebacker
6 Jason Hatcher, 6-3, 242, So-1L
47 Jabari Johnson, 6-1, 276, Jr-1L

Defensive end/Linebacker
2 Alvin “Bud” Dupree, 6-4, 264, Sr-3L
41 TraVaughn Paschal, 6-4, 257, Sr-2L

Middle linebacker
45 Josh Forrest, 6-3, 236, Jr-2L
41 TraVaughn Paschal, 6-4, 257, Sr-2L

Weak-side linebacker
22 Khalid Henderson, 6-1, 228, Jr-2L
33 Ryan Flannigan, 6-2, 225, Jr-JC

24 Blake McClain, 5-11, 194, So-1L
29 Kendall Randolph, 6-0, 168, Fr-HS

3 Fred Tiller, 6-0, 170, Jr-2L
11 J.D. Harmon, 6-2, 201, So-1L

5 Ashely Lowery, 6-1, 220, Sr-3L
15 Marcus McWilson, 6-0, 210, So-1L

1 A.J. Stamps, 6-0, 199, Jr-JC
28 Eric Dixon, 5-11, 193, Sr-3L

16 Cody Quinn, 5-10, 172, Jr-2L
21 Nate Willis, 6-0, 168, Sr-1L

Special teams

Long snapper
59 Kelly Mason, 6-3, 223, Jr-2L
56 Matt Howard, 5-10, 208, Fr-RS

13 Jared Leet, 6-3, 196, Jr-2L
12 Reese Phillips, 6-2, 218, Fr-RS

99 Austin MacGinnis, 5-10, 168, Fr-RS
95 Miles Buter, 5-9, 160, Fr-HS

9 Landon Foster, 6-1, 198, Jr-2L
93 Bryan Kirshe, 6-0, 155, Fr-HS

Kickoff returner

18 Stanley “Boom” Williams, 5-9, 200, Fr-HS
11 J.D. Harmon, 6-2, 201, So-1L or 5 Braylon Heard, 5-11, 189, Jr-Tr

Punt returner
9 Demarco Robinson, 5-10, 158, Sr-3L
1 Ryan Timmons, 5-10, 195, So-1L


Discovering the Origins of LSU and their Appreciation of Corndogs

Two Saturdays ago Katy Perry brought the LSU-corndog phenomenon mainstream during her picks in the Grove for College Gameday.  The corndog references have been in social media for years, but what the hell does it all mean?



I had many theories entering the weekend:  1.  Corndogs are delicious and everybody should appreciate their awesomeness.  2.  The campus smells like corndogs.  3.  The first date you take a girl in Baton Rouge is for corndogs.  After some further investigation, I spoke with someone who was there when the corndog myth originated.

In 2010, #6 LSU visited Cam Newton and #5 Auburn.  Both schools hang their hats on insulting opposing fan bases with cheers of “Tiger Bait.”  Since they are both Tigers, Auburn fans needed a creative way to insult the Bayou Bengals.  Their stroke of genius was to call LSU fans corndogs, adopting an old Big 12 insult for the Nebraska Cornhuskers.  The silly label has stuck ever since, but the Cajuns have managed to turn an insult into a pretty funny inside joke.

It was an anticlimactic discovery, but I will not complain.  I’ll just laugh at all of the wonderful pictures of pretty LSU girls eating corndogs.


The Auburn Tigers want you to know their side of the story, which appears to go further back than I originally thought.  Nonetheless, it’s still an anticlimactic finish.

Photo by Chet White | UK Athletics

The best of times and the worst of times (Monday Show Thread)

Photo by Chet White | UK Athletics

Photo by Chet White | UK Athletics

Good morning and welcome to the Monday edition of Kentucky Sports Radio. This weekend, the Big Blue Nation hit some highs (Big Blue Madness) and some lows (the rout at LSU). Matt and Ryan will take you through both, as well as preview this Saturday’s game against #1 Mississippi State.


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

Today’s topics include:

— Big Blue Madness


— Drake

— Backwards hats, bros

— the SEC Network

— Trey Lyles

— Much more…

Listen to Kentucky Sports Radio

KSR Affiliate List

WBGN (1340am): Bowling Green
WAIN (93.9fm): Columbia
WHIR (1230am): Danville
WCLU (1490am): Glasgow
WGOH (1370am): Grayson
WTUK (105.1fm): Harlan
WHOP (95.3fm): Hopkinsville
WJKY (1060am): Jamestown
WLAP (630am): Lexington
WFTG (1400am): London
WKJK (1080am): Louisville
WFMW (730am): Madisonville
WWXL (1450am): Manchester
WFTM (1240am): Maysville
WKYM (101.7fm): Monticello
WMSK (1550am): Morganfield
WLME (102.7fm):Owensboro
WPAD (1560am): Paducah
WKYH (600am): Paintsville
WLSI (900am) Pikeville
WPRT (960am): Prestonsburg
WSFC (1240am): Somerset
WTCW (920am): Whitesburg
WHAY (98.3fm): Whitley City
WBTH (1400am): Williamson


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: Monday Morning Playcalling Breakdown (LSU)

Every Monday I will detail with little commentary how the offense generated yards after each game.  I will break it down into 1st down, 2nd and long, 2nd and short, 3rd and long, and 3rd and short situations and tell you how many passes and runs were called in each situation, along with the success or failure of those situations.  And then you have the opportunity to discuss how you thought the So without further ado, here were the stats for the LSU game:

Run: 12 rushes for 50 yards (4.2 ypc)
Pass: 6-11, 42 yards, 1 sack for -5 yards

Limited Analysis: The rushing stats don’t look bad but they are bolstered by a 20 yard run by Horton late in the game and a 16 yard scramble by Towles.  The other 10 rushing attempts went for 14 yards.  Those 2 rushes were the only 1st down plays of the 24 plays run that Kentucky gained more than 10 yards.  The passing attack was nonexistent for the Cats.

Season Totals
Run: 115 rushes for 608 yards (5.3 ypc), 5 TD
Pass: 60-95, 785 yards, 3 TD, 2 INT, 3 sacks for -16 yards

2ND AND LONG (6 yards or more)
Run: 7 rushes for 25 yards (3.6 ypc)
Pass: 4-10, 17 yards

Limited Analysis: Not that you will find many positives on offense from Saturday, but these plays were especially poor.  UK continued to put themselves in 3rd and long situations because they couldn’t generate any yards on these kinds of plays.

Season Totals
Run: 48 rushes for 293 yards (6.1 ypc), 1 TD
Pass: 32-62, 374 yards, 2 TD, 1 INT, 2 sacks for -18 yards

2ND AND SHORT (5 yards or less)
Run: 2 rushes for 4 yards (2.0 ypc)
Pass: No Passes Attempted

Limited Analysis: The fact that UK only ran 2 plays of 2nd down and 5 or shorter shows just how bad they were on 1st down.  But of course UK didn’t convert a first down on either of these plays.

Season Totals
Run: 35 rushes for 250 yards (7.1 ypc), 4 TD
Pass: 10-12, 123 yards, 2 TD, 1 INT, 1 sack for -12 yards

3RD AND LONG (6 yards or more)
Run: 1 rush for 0 yards (0.0 ypc)
Pass: 7-10, 64 yards, 1 sack for -1 yards

Limited Analysis: If you have to find one positive in the offensive game, it would be the passing attack on 3rd and long.  Towles was efficient here and hit a couple nice passes, including the 33 yarder to Robinson.

Season Totals
Run: 6 rushes for 30 yards (5.0 ypc)
Pass: 30-48, 360 yards, 2 TD, 1 INT, 7 sacks for -55 yards, 2 fumbles lost

3RD AND SHORT (5 yards or less)
Run: 2 rushes for 4 yards (2.0 ypc)
Pass: 1-3, 17 yards

Limited Analysis: Despite the lack of yards, UK converted first downs on 3 of 5 of these plays.

Season Totals
Run: 29 rushes for 120 yards (4.1 ypc), 2 TD
Pass: 8-14, 92 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT, 2 sacks for -13 yards

KSR’s Top 10 Tweets of the Weekend

(Darrell Bird | Catpause)

(Darrell Bird | Catpause)

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


#10 Gregg Doyel

Great. Guy gets a half page ad and it all goes to his head. (ha)




#9 Ryan Lemond






#8 Tad Long

How exactly do these classes work? Do basketball fans fight Football fans or what?




#7 Larry Wells

Please don’t. We really need you next year and can’t afford for you to be hunted.




#6 Jay Dean

Hey now, don’t insult Tubby like that. That’s low.




#5 MrBojangles

No. We don’t want any more. No one does. Ever.





#4 Jon Hood

Science is hard.






Uh. That’s not lemonade.





#2 Robert Rogers

Please tell me you left it there.




#1 Jason Stackhouse

He’s like a little kid at Disney. I love it.


A UK Weekend of Highs and Lows

A UK Weekend of Highs and Lows


For a period of time late Friday evening, Kentucky fans could have been forgiven for feeling that they were collectively on top of the world. Think about it, Big Blue Madness had just finished with one of the biggest musical artists in the country not only stopping by, but clearly wanting to be a part of the team. The rock concert portion of the event was great and on the court, the scrimmage showcased once again that this team is going to be crazy good in unprecedented ways. The UK Football team was taking the field the next day, with a legitimate shot to pull an upset in Death Valley (even Kirk Herbstreit was picking the Cats to win) and if that victory manifested itself, College Gameday would be rolling into town in one week. The dream of the two major sports programs, each competing at the highest levels in the country at the same time, was right on the precipice of occurring, at least a full year before any of us thought it possible. The city of Lexington was abuzz and excitement was definitely in the air.

Then came Saturday night. Like a giant smack across the face, we were given a stern dose of reality in Baton Rouge, as Kentucky was destroyed in every phase of the game, 41-3. The Cats were dominated, literally from the opening kick, as a bizarre formation started a series of events that left me wondering why college football games have to be so long. It was a good old fashioned SEC road butt whooping and as UK fans went to bed that evening (or called into my postgame show slightly inebriated), the unadulterated joy of the night before was long forgotten.

Still, all hope should not be lost. The game on Saturday was the worst game of the season, but not a predictor of what is to come for the rest of the year. Everything that could go wrong went wrong for Kentucky and all involved, from the offense to the defense to the special teams to the coaches, had one of their worst performances of their UK tenure. However Mark Stoops said afterwards that he intended to make certain that the game did not “define” the team and he expected a top-level effort versus #1 Mississippi State next week. I agree with Stoops and still think (in an opinion that seems to have me in the distinct minority) that Kentucky can win on Saturday. I don’t expect them to but I believe it will be a very competitive game with the nation watching along on CBS.

With that as a backdrop, here are the 5 biggest takeaways from both the football game and Big Blue Madness:


The Cats are still one year away from being a factor in the SEC race: We went into the LSU game with two very different scenarios for Kentucky emerging. On the one hand, it was reasonable to say that the Cats controlled their own destiny in the SEC East. Split the games against the two SEC West schools and UK had three winnable games to finish the conference slate in order to gain a trip to Atlanta. On the other hand, UK would still be an underdog in all six of its final games, thus giving no obvious victory to ensure a Bowl berth and a six win season. So which of these two realities was Kentucky closest to? A trip to the SEC Championship game or needing an upset to make a Bowl game. It turns out that the latter of these two is a better indicator of this team’s level. There is no shame in that reality. Most of us coming into the season thought five wins was a realistic goal for the year and making a bowl game would be a HUGE success. The Cats already have those five wins and getting one more is definitely within the realm of possibility. But the notion of making the SEC Championship game was a pipe dream this year (although I think they will be in the hunt next year), and our expectations can now be reset a bit closer to reality.


The Special Teams were not very special: Kentucky was really bad on special teams Saturday…and probably had one of the worst special teams halves in the history of the program. From the bizarre opening kickoff formation (still not sure what they were doing), to the terrible coverage of punts, to the decision by a number of players to not even field the kickoff, it was a complete disaster that otherwise overshadowed a fairly even half. The score was 27-3, but at least 17 of those points were the direct cause of special teams errors. The mistakes became so depressing that the only thing left to do was collectively debate why our coach was wearing his hat backwards (probably slightly too old for that Coach Naivar…unless you are Samuel L Jackson or Dale Earnhardt Jr, wearing a hat backwards after the age of 40 may be a no-no). I assume these are errors that will be corrected as the special teams have generally been ok so far this year. But for one night, it was as bad a cluster as we have ever seen any time a kicker found his way onto the field.

No Rhythm could be found on offense: With the exception of two first half drives, which collectively only ended in three points, UK’s offense could find no consistency and the game plan seemed a bit inconsistent. It was unclear exactly how UK wanted to attack LSU’s defense, with understandably few attacks on the Tigers’ great secondary utilized and no ability to get a regular run game showcased. The most bizarre moment of the first half may have been the key 4th down with UK down 17-3 and beginning to get a little momentum, when the Cats called timeout after LSU brought nine in the box to defend the Wildcat formation. UK came out of the timeout still in the Wildcat, LSU again used nine in the box and the play predictably went nowhere. It wasn’t clear what the goal was or what happened during the timeout, but the play symbolized a night of frustration for an offense that simply couldn’t get its feet under itself at any point.

The Defense Had Some good Moments: By the time LSU scored early in the second half to go up 34-3, the rout was on and the game lost its competitiveness. But before that moment, the UK defense actually handled itself pretty well. The Cats made some big stops to halt LSU drives that began with good field position. LSU didn’t overpower the Defensive front until well into the third quarter and UK’s Linebackers had one of their best performances of the year. A lack of depth, fatigue and the overall score ultimately wore them down but the defense did its best to keep UK in the game despite the early errors throughout the first half. That is at least some positive for the staff to build upon on tape that might otherwise be best left in the garbage dump for the week.

The Attitude of the team is still good: One positive about such a young team is that they don’t let these losses keep them down. One player after another has gone to social media today to say that they are moving past this loss immediately and are ready to bounce back. With arguably the best team in the country coming into town next week, that is good to see. But such a good opponent and a nationally televised game may actually be helpful in making this team get over the humiliation in Baton Rouge. Pride will be tested and a chance to make a quick redemption on an even larger scale now exists. I firmly believe they will showcase a completely different mindset next week and the game will be very competitive, further proof that this is a different UK football program than we have been used to in recent years.


This Team is Really, Really, Really Good: The show aspect of Big Blue Madness was good and we will talk about that in a minute, but the real highlight for me was the scrimmage. Look, I know it isn’t a secret after the Bahamas trip, but this team is crazy good. With Willie and Trey Lyles now on the floor, it is hard to imagine teams stopping this group. Watching a 6’10” Trey Lyles at the three was amazing, not just because of the size but because it works. On the offensive end, these guys are almost impossible to stop, with tons of scoring options and offensive sets available to John Calipari. The big guys are defensive nightmares, Andrew Harrison is about 20 times better than he was last year, Derrick Willis and Dominique Hawkins are probably the best 11th and 12th players in school history, the pace of play that can be accomplished with this roster on a platoon system is astounding to comprehend and the total athleticism on display is truly special. I know we thought the group last year would be historically good but they were saddled with many unknowns. Not this group…we know how good they are because we have seen it. One never knows if a title will occur because randomness and luck do matter. But over the course of the season, I am not sure how many teams in this school’s history will have been better than this one. It is going to be a heck of a ride.


Drake was quite the show: While some aspects of Drake’s appearance at Big Blue Madness were understandably mocked on the internet (his attempts during the layup line were cringe worthy and the picture I took above of his shooting form became an internet meme within about an hour on Friday), the effect of his attendance cannot be understated. This is a college basketball event and Drake is one of the biggest music stars in the world…and he attended, wearing UK gear and calling our coach one of “the most important men in my life.” That matters…even to those that know or care little about his music. The star power it adds further cements the reputation of Kentucky as the “cool” program in college basketball and showcases that playing here is just on a different level than playing at even the other top schools in America. While he didn’t perform or do anything really except introduce Calipari, his presence further feeds into the marketing job that has been done over the years in the Calipari era. Kentucky is the “it” place to play college basketball and there isn’t really anywhere else close.

Calipari is so confident right now: He literally dropped the mic. While I thought he might use his current Vince McMahon state to give another “we are college basketball” speech, instead he took another, better approach. With all of us waiting for him to talk, he instead said “enough talking, let’s ball.” The mic drop caused even Calipari to smirk and the crowd was left screaming. At this point after five years, there isn’t much left for Calipari to say. It was a perfect start to the season and confirms once again just how confident Calipari is in this group I think he believes is as good as any he has ever coached.

The Recruits Loved It: We will hear more about this as the week goes on, but from all indications, the recruits were blown away by the experience. Malik Newman said the UK fans were even more passionate than he thought they would be, Stephen Zimmerman’s mother commented on how it was as exciting event as she has ever attended and Carlton Bragg spoke about how all the players talked about what it would be like if they played together. It was as good a group of talent as Kentucky has had at Big Blue Madness in many years and if they were to all come, or even if two of the group were to come, Kentucky would be loaded again next year. But as Evan Daniels pointed out on the radio with me on Friday, none of these guys are assured at this point…thus making the visit this weekend so very important. I still think Kentucky is in very good shape with Zimmerman, I like where they stand with Newman, Jaylen Brown is a complete mystery, I expect Brandon Ingram to stay in the Carolina area and I think Carlton Bragg picks Kansas (maybe soon). But no matter what happens, if Kentucky gets any of the five 2015 recruits that were here, the excitement of the Madness event itself will be a big reason why they pull the trigger and come to Lexington.

Matthew Mitchell kills it once again: I am still amazed by Matthew Mitchell. While I knew what he was going to do (we filmed that video about a week ago…and Ryan’s part still makes me laugh), seeing him get up and sing to the crowd as he did was quite impressive. The man can sing, he can dance and he is a great showman…but he does it while also knowing that at any point it could all blow up in his face. That is part of what makes these performances so good every year. I am not sure how he tops this one, but it will be very hard. The performance (and two minute KSR-included entrance video) are below if you missed them:

So there you have it…big week ahead, including a KSR appearance in Ashland on Wednesday at Mattress Warehouse for a remote. It all culminates in one of the biggest games in Commonwealth in a decade on Saturday as the #1 team in America comes to town. Should be fun….

Cats To The Liberty Bowl In Week 8 SEC Bowl Projections

Cats To The Liberty Bowl In Week 8 SEC Bowl Projections

liberty bowl

David Ching over at just released his bowl projections for this week, and the Cats are slated (again) to be walking in Memphis in the AutoZone Liberty Bowl. Ching had this to say about Kentucky in his projections:

“Kentucky (5-2) gets to stay in, but the Wildcats are coming off a 41-3 loss at LSU and will face a challenging second half of the schedule where earning another victory (and achieving bowl eligibility) might be tough.”

Below is the rest of his projections, which to no surprise has Mississippi State in the playoff semifinal at the Rose Bowl:

College Football Playoff semifinal (Rose Bowl): Mississippi State
Capital One Orange Bowl: Ole Miss
Cotton Bowl: Alabama
Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl: Georgia
Citrus Bowl: Auburn
TaxSlayer Bowl: LSU
Outback Bowl: Missouri
Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl: Texas A&M
Belk Bowl: South Carolina
AdvoCare V100 Texas Bowl: Tennessee
AutoZone Liberty Bowl: Kentucky

I say the team shakes this picture up on Saturday, don’t you?

[ SEC bowl projections: Week 8]


My Goodbye To KSR:

With that, I have completed my final article as a writer here at KSR. After two great years of doing what I thought I never would be able to, it is time for me to move on to the next chapter.

I truly cannot thank Matt, Drew, and Tyler enough for giving me the chance to write for all of you here. It’s going to be weird to be leaving a place that I have identified with throughout the last two years, however all of things I’ve been able to do have been really mind-blowing.

The main sport that I had covered for both KSR College and the main site was baseball, and I had a hell of a crew in David Mulloy, Dean Bowling, Brooks Holton, and Derek Johnson to make our coverage pretty in-depth. The pinnacle of this baseball coverage to me was back in May, when myself, David, and Dean sat out in the pouring on and off again rain to watch A.J. Reed and the squad play in the NCAA Tournament. While the team lost that lone game I was at, I’ll never forget sprinting with laptop in hand to the press box as rain the size of Cadillac’s came pouring down. So for those memories, I thank those guys tremendously.

However everyone else at KSR has really helped to make this site like a big, online family. I could really spend the next 20 minutes telling you the reader about all the stories that have helped make this the best two years I could have asked for. From borderline impromptu dodgeball games against UK, to covering the Coach Cal Fantasy Camp, I could really go on for hours, but I’ll spare you the time.

Finally, I want to thank you the readers for all of the views and words (most kind, some not) that you have given me over my time here. You all really do make this site what it is, and for that I at least cannot thank you enough.

With that said, it is time for this cowboy to ride away. Thank you friends, and Go Cats!