The one and only Big Mick is a meaty masterpiece in its own right. Composed of two quarter-pound patties* of never-fresh, frozen, mostly beef raised close to the processing plant. Only McDowell’s has the frosted beef and processed cheese to give you a major reason for the afternoon trip to the secret bathroom only you and Debra know about on the 9th floor that is under construction.
You can be a part of McDowell’s KSR Top 10 Tweets by using hashtags like #KSR #BBN or #KSRtop10. You can also nominate tweets by mentioning them with the hashtag. If we like what we see, it could be posted the next day.
If you are interested in sponsoring KSR’s Top 10 Tweets, please contact us at Via Email.
#10 Drew Franklin
Former Austin Peay ball boy here. “Let’s Go Peay” was on my shirt and I laughed every time. https://t.co/zWfVqoYkWi
— Drew Franklin (@DrewFranklinKSR) February 15, 2019
It’s hard not to.
#9 Curtis Burch
disappointed it wasn’t Ellen Calipari https://t.co/05A8F67MV0
— Curtis Burch (@curtisburch) February 15, 2019
We all are, honestly.
#8 John Robic’s Hair
To the ceiling!!! @KSBarAndGrille
— John Robic’s Hair (@JohnRobicsHair) February 15, 2019
The Hair is in the building, folks!
@ryanlemond @KySportsRadio @ShannonTheDude @justthetipky TJ from fort bragg. Time to go play in the sandbox again across the pond (aka deploy Afghanistan) I’ll miss calling into the shows but I’ll listen to the podcasts every. Go big blue!! Hope we can win it all this year.
— Teej (@kentucky_Teej) February 15, 2019
#6 Tom Hart
— Tom Hart (@tom_hart) February 16, 2019
Don’t get your hopes up. We will never be satisfied.
#5 Jay Bilas
That’d be awesome. But, we’re doing 94 Feet with Rick Barnes.
— Jay Bilas (@JayBilas) February 15, 2019
*eye roll emoji*
#4 Derik Hunt
— Derik Hunt (@derikhunt915) February 15, 2019
Some people would pay high dollar for that spot.
#3 Drew Franklin
I’m working on a secret @KSBarAndGrille project that no one knows about. Hoping to announce it Sunday. ?
— Drew Franklin (@DrewFranklinKSR) February 15, 2019
#2 Justin Brown
— Justin Brown(10-3) (@justin_brown3) February 15, 2019
Welcome to the family!
#1 Josh Harrellson
— Josh Harrellson (@BigJorts55) February 15, 2019
You aren’t alone, Josh.
By Maggie Davis on ©February 15th, 2019 @ 10:30pm
Congratulations are in order for Kentucky softball coach Rachel Lawson, as she’s now the first coach in program history to record 400 career wins as Kentucky’s head coach.
The achievement came Friday when the No. 21 Cats run-ruled two different teams during ESPN’s St. Pete/Clearwater Elite Invitational. UK defeated Hofstra 8-0 and Utah 13-2.
Kentucky will be back in action Saturday afternoon, when they’ll face No. 11 Texas. The game is set to start at 10 a.m. and can be seen on the SEC Network. The fun continues throughout the afternoon, when UK will play No. 19 Oregon at 4 p.m. on ESPNU.
For the first time this year, the Wildcats have hit .500 – Saturday’s wins pushed the Cats to a 4-4 record on the season.
By Maggie Davis on ©February 15th, 2019 @ 10:00pm
Kentucky’s own J.B. Holmes is making headlines after an impressive hole-in-one at today’s PGA event, the Genesis Open at the Riviera Country Club in Los Angeles. The shot pushed him to the front of the pack, where he would be tied at the No. 1 slot alongside Jordan Spieth.
— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) February 15, 2019
In addition to his ace, Holmes had seven birdies and just one bogey in his eight-under par 63. He also hit 11 of 14 fairways and 14 of 18 greens in regulation; he had no misses on putts within 10 feet. Holmes finished round one with a one-stroke lead over Spieth. But of course, the hole-in-one was the highlight of the day.
“It was awesome to see that,” Holmes said after the round. “I wanted to get it past the hole because I knew how much they were coming back. Hit it exactly how I wanted it and it went in.”
Now, it’s time to celebrate accordingly (or maybe get paid for some extra advertising).
— J.B. Holmes (@JBHolmesgolf) February 16, 2019
Rain delays on Thursday forced a small tweak in the Saturday schedule, but Holmes and the rest of the contenders will be back in action Saturday morning.
By Maggie Davis on ©February 15th, 2019 @ 9:00pm
Saturday’s agenda is packed for the biggest SEC matchup of the season: No. 1 Tennessee at No. 5 Kentucky. The two teams are set to tip-off at 8 p.m., but there’s plenty of action before then. Here’s how you can pass the time:
9:30 a.m. – Memorial Coliseum doors open for College GameDay. Admission is free! Here’s parking info from our friends at UK Athletics:
11:00 a.m. – College GameDay officially begins at Memorial Coliseum and lasts until noon.
11:00 a.m – KSBar & Grille opens their doors. There will be plenty of food and drink specials (and a surprise or two) before the game.
2:00 p.m. – Kentucky student lineup begins for game seating outside of Rupp Arena.
5:30 p.m. – Kentucky Sports Radio pregame radio show begins.
6:30 p.m. – Rupp Arena doors open to the public.
8:00 p.m. – Tip-off.
KSBar & Grille will also remain open after the game… And yes, it will be more fun if the Cats win.
And here’s how you can watch and/or listen to all of the action:
TV: ESPN. The game will be commentated by Jay Bilas, Dan Shulman and Maria Taylor.
Radio: Tom Leach and Mike Pratt will have the UK radio network call on 630 AM and 98.1 FM in Lexington. You can also stream it online at UKAthletics.com.
By Maggie Davis on ©February 15th, 2019 @ 8:30pm
The NBA Rising-Star game is almost upon us, and three former Wildcats will be on the game roster. De’Aaron Fox, Kevin Knox and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander will all suit up for the NBA’s up-and-comer competition. The Rising-Star game features players in their first and second years in the league. All the action is going down at the Spectrum Center in Charlotte, North Carolina, but you can watch it all from the comfort of your home on TNT. The game is set to tip at 9 p.m.
In addition to the former Cats, players including Ben Simmons, Jayson Tatum and Trae Young will all participate. Knox got the call when Lonzo Ball pulled out of the game due to an ankle injury (or, he still doesn’t want to play next to Fox. Whatever you choose to believe).
Friday night’s game is just the beginning of a basketball-filled weekend. Of course, Kentucky vs. Tennessee takes place Saturday night, but so will the NBA Skills Challenge, 3-point contest and the Slam Dunk contest. The NBA All-Star game will be Sunday night at 8:00 p.m. In total, there will be an astonishing seven Wildcats participating in the weekend.
The Skills Challenge (Saturday, 2/16): De’Aaron Fox
The 3-point Contest (Saturday, 2/16): Devin Booker
The Slam Dunk Contest (Saturday, 2/16): Hamidou Diallo
The All-Stars Game (Sunday, 2/17): Anthony Davis and Karl-Anthony Towns.
How awesome would it be to see a Kentucky sweep? Gilgeous-Alexander may have picked against Booker in the 3-point competition, but he’s going with Hami for the dunk contest:
.@shaiglalex gives his NBA All-Star Saturday Night predictions!
— NBA Canada (@NBACanada) February 15, 2019
Remember, tonight’s action starts at 9 on TNT.
By Nick Roush on ©February 15th, 2019 @ 8:00pm
Entering the 2018 Kentucky football season, nobody (except Charles Walker) predicted ten wins for the Wildcats. It’s obvious that Mark Stoops’ team overachieved. Now their over-achievement has been quantified.
SB Nation’s stat man Bill Connelly is the primary proprietor of the S&P+ analytics. A college football forecasting tool, the metrics are awfully handy when picking games against the spread (a la KenPom for college basketball). I can’t explain exactly how they’re compiled, but this details the S&P+ rather simply.
Entering the season Vegas set Kentucky’s over/under win total at 5.5, a line so bad, it inspired me to make my first official sports wager in a Vegas casino. Meanwhile, the S&P+ was much more reasonable, projecting 7.8 Kentucky wins. Jack Pilgrim and I are the only two from KSR who logged preseason predictions over the 7.8. As you know very well, Kentucky won more than 7.8 games.
Only two teams in college football won at a higher rate than their S&P+ projected win total.
1. Army +2.9 (8.1 expected wins, 11 actual wins)
2. Northwestern +2.8 (6.2, nine)
3. Kentucky +2.2 (7.8, 10)
4. Ohio State +2.1 (10.9, 13)
5. Georgia Southern +2.1 (7.9, 10)
6. Texas +1.7 (8.3, 10)
7. Notre Dame +1.7 (10.3, 12)
8. Liberty +1.6 (4.4, six)
9. FIU +1.6 (7.4, nine)
10. Syracuse +1.5 (8.5, 10)
Haters may blame it on randomness, but they’re wrong. Kentucky overachieved by +1.9 in 2017 as well.
The advanced analytics are never kind to Kentucky, but they prove that Mark Stoops is one of college football’s best at making the most out of his talent. After compiling data back to 2005, Stoops’ teams win on average .63 more games than they’re expected to, finishing just shy of the 90th percentile of all college football coaches.
It should not surprise you that there’s another UK coach on the list of college football’s greatest overachievers. Rich Brooks ranked second, behind only Tom Herman, winning 1.22 more games than expected per year through five seasons.
The stats profile concludes that Kentucky is in good hands with Mark Stoops, but it isn’t all good news. Overachieving teams eventually regress back to the mean. Kentucky defied those odds from 2017 to 2018, but it’s not a sustainable statistical trend. In the early 2019 S&P+ rankings Kentucky is ranked 37th, predicted to be favored in only six games.
The Kentucky football team defied the advanced stats over the last two seasons. For the third time to be the charm, Terry Wilson and the UK offense must be able to score plenty of points at Kroger Field to cash in on a favorable home schedule.
By Drew Franklin on ©February 15th, 2019 @ 7:15pm
A Western Kentucky man misheard his wife when she asked for tulips for Valentine’s Day. Allan Harris instead thought his wife, Nina, said “turnips,” so he got her just that: a dozen turnips in a bucket that says “I love you.”
Once he realized his mistake, Allan went back and got the tulips. It made for a funny Valentine’s Day and a lesson in listening for the Hartford couple, and earned them a spot on WEHT news:
By Jack Pilgrim on ©February 15th, 2019 @ 6:55pm
Kentucky is set to host a massive visitor this weekend with No. 1 Tennessee in town.
Sources have confirmed to KSR that 2019 five-star forward Keion Brooks Jr. will be in Lexington on an unofficial visit, joining a list of elite talent in BJ Boston (2020), Justin Powell (2020) and Kennedy Chandler (2021) for the highly-anticipated matchup.
Forward | 6-8 | 185 lbs.
Fort Wayne, IN | North Side
AAU: Spiece Indy Heat
|ESPN||No. 30 | 9 PF||Top247||No. 16 | 5 SF|
|Rivals||No. 35 | 13 PF||247 Comp.||No. 22 | 6 SF|
At one point, sources told KSR that Kentucky had significant momentum in Brooks’ recruitment, with those within the program feeling extremely confident in their position with the 6-foot-8 forward out of Fort Wayne, IN. Even when most major recruiting analysts believed Indiana was the runaway favorite, those on Kentucky’s side of things felt there was a strong chance they could win out in the end.
Over the last few weeks, however, I was told that Kentucky lost a bit of ground, with both Michigan State and North Carolina likely jumping UK and joining Indiana as the main contenders to land the consensus top-35 prospect.
Now, it appears Kentucky has made yet another significant push for the five-star, with Brian Snow of 247 Sports going as far as to say the Cats may have jumped back into his top two with Indiana, and certainly in his top three with IU and MSU.
With an announcement expected over the next week or so, Kentucky has an opportunity this weekend to make up serious ground and possibly even secure his commitment when the time comes.
By Aaron Torres on ©February 15th, 2019 @ 6:00pm
It’s the Game of the Century – welllllllll, maybe not quite. But even though Kentucky lost Tuesday to LSU, Saturday’s showdown with Tennessee remains massive. For the Wildcats, it is another chance to add a huge win to their resume, one to go along victories at Louisville, against North Carolina, and a season sweep of Mississippi State.
A win Saturday would also put Kentucky in line to reach all the goals they laid out before the season: To win the SEC, get a No. 1 seed and have a path to the Final Four through Louisville.
Of course to do that, Kentucky will have do something virtually no one else has been able to do this season: Knock off the Vols. Understand that Tennessee is every bit worthy of their current No. 1 ranking, as they sit at 23-1 overall and 11-0 in the SEC, with their only loss against Kansas, at a time when Kansas was at 100 percent. Since that loss, Tennessee has ripped off 19 straight wins. And what’s been especially impressive is that few were particularly close. The Vols have won their last six by double-figures.
So yeah, this game is huge and it won’t be easy for Kentucky to get the win – but when you’re as good as the Wildcats, it’s not impossible either.
What are the keys to a Kentucky victory? Here are six:
1. Can Ashton Hagans slow down Jordan Bone?
While it’d be easy to say “Kentucky’s No. 1 key is to slow down Grant Williams” that’s kind of approaching the problem the wrong way. You’re basically getting the right answer by asking the wrong question. Because ultimately you know what leads to so much of Williams success: Having a point guard who gets him the ball in a perfect position to score.
That point guard is Jordan Bone. And to his credit, Bone has quietly emerged into the most consistent point guard in the SEC. He is also the engine that drives the Vols’ bus, as the guy who plays the most minutes of anyone on the Vols roster (yes, more than Williams or Admiral Schofield) and has a sparkling 3.5-1 assist to turnover ratio. There is nothing more valuable in college basketball than a smart, veteran point guard who knows his role and does his job. And that is Bone for the Vols.
That’s also what makes Hagans’ play so important on Saturday.
It’s no secret that Hagans is one of the 2-3 best on-ball defenders in college basketball (if not the best) and Kentucky’s best hope of winning is to cut off the head of the snake – in other words, cut off Tennessee’s offense before they can get in rhythm. Can Hagans stay out of foul trouble and stay in Bone’s grill? Can he make it tough for Bone to get Tennessee into its offensive sets?
The best chance to beat Tennessee is to take them out of their rhythm and comfort zone. And Hagans is more than good enough to do that.
2. Kentucky needs to limit Tennessee’s three-point shooting
Again, because so much of the focus is on Williams and Schofield, what gets lost with Tennessee is that at most times they have five guys on the floor that can beat you at any given moment. It isn’t just the Vols two All-Americans, but also Bone, Jordan Bowden and Lamonte Turner who can get 20 if you don’t defend them.
And that’s especially true from beyond the three-point line. On the season, the Vols are shooting nearly 37 percent as a team with Schofield (40 percent), Bowden (39.5 percent) and Turner (37.5 percent) all hitting an insane number of threes.
That’s the bad news for Kentucky, but the good news is this: While three-point defense was once of this team’s biggest weaknesses it has now become a relative strength. The overall numbers don’t totally back it up (again, because Kentucky was so bad in the category to start the season) but the recent numbers do. In the Wildcats last four games, three of their opponents have shot below 30 percent from the three-point line. Even Tuesday’s loss to LSU wasn’t so much to do with the Tigers getting hot from the three-point line as other factors – LSU finished just 6 of 21 from behind the arc.
More than anything on the defensive end, limiting the three-point shot for Tennessee is key.
3. Get deep into Tennessee’s bench
Fun story. Late last summer I had Nevada coach Eric Musselman on the Aaron Torres Sports Podcast (by the way, if you haven’t been listening, this week’s guest is ESPN’s Sean Farnham – and he was awesome. Download here) and one of the topics we discussed was his team’s depth entering this season. I asked him if it was nice to have all those extra pieces and he told me something surprising. “No,” he said. “I’d rather have a shorter bench where everyone knows their role.”
Well, if there is one team that follows the “a short bench where everyone who knows their role is ideal” edict to a tee, it’s Tennessee. The Vols have six players who play 25 minutes or more this season, and basically take up big chunks of minutes. Two other players (Yves Pons and John Fulkerson) average between 10 and 12 minutes a piece. After that, basically no one sees the floor.
But even that eight-man rotation (the six who average 25+ minutes a game + Pons and Fulkerson) is deceiving. While Pons does play quite a bit because of his defensive presence (he’s 6’9 and a good defender) he brings next to nothing to the table offensively, averaging just three points per game. Fulkerson plays an “average” of 10 minutes per game on paper, but if you really dig deeper, most of those minutes came during blowouts in out of conference games. He has played 10 minutes or less in seven of Tennessee’s 11 SEC games.
Again, it’s Tennessee’s top six or bust. Meaning that the best thing that Kentucky can do is attack the Vols and try to get a few of their key guys in foul trouble. Do that, and the Vols have to insert either Pons or Fulkerson (or maybe both) into the lineup which makes them less versatile and less of a threat offensively.
Here’s a random prediction for you: If either Yves Pons or John Fulkerson plays more than 15 minutes on Saturday, Kentucky wins.
By Brent Wainscott on ©February 15th, 2019 @ 5:30pm
The Bat Cats start their season 1-0 as they defeat Austin Peay 8-4 on a rainy day in Clarksville, Tennessee.
Home-Runs seemed to be a common theme today for Kentucky as the Cats hit four home runs in their season opener, the biggest one coming from TJ Collett in the eighth inning. In the bottom of the seventh Kentucky had just given up their two-run lead on a two-RBI triple from Austin Peay’s Garrett Spain. Needing to rally quickly, the first four hitters in the eighth inning scored, three of them off the three-run home-run from Collett as the Cats regained the lead 6-4. In the ninth, UK would put two more on the board after a home-run from Breydon Daniel, and an RBI single from Tates Creek product Jaren Shelby.
It was a big day for fresh faces in UK’s lineup today, as three JUCO transfers playing in their first D1 game today hit home-runs. The first one came off the bat of Dalton Reed, who led all of junior college in home-runs as he wasted no time getting his first career home run at this level, sending the first pitch he saw over the center field wall. Reed also had two more hits on the day, keeping him one triple short of the cycle. A big day for Dalton Reed and it’s clear he will be a big bat in Kentucky’s lineup going forward. His teammate from Seminole State Junior College, Breydon Daniel got his in the top of the ninth and Tates Creek Alum, and State College Florida transfer Jaren Shelby hit his home-run in the top of the sixth to give UK a 2-0 lead at the time.
Zack Thompson had a solid opening day outing on the hill. He only went four short innings, which is understandable so early in the season, but those four innings were stellar. Nine of Thompson’s 12 outs were strikeouts through 16 batters faced, and he only gave up one hit in his outing as well. Dillon Harper, however, had a rough go of things as he just went two and a third, while giving up four runs in the sixth and seventh, but after Cole Daniels got Kentucky out of their jam with four pitches, Carson Coleman came in and shut the door to seal the Cats opening day victory. Carson Coleman also got credited with the win in relief.
Kentucky will play game two of the weekend series tomorrow at 2 PM. You can catch the game on 98.5 FM Lexington as a nice appetizer before Kentucky basketball takes on Tennesee tomorrow night in Rupp Arena.
Follow me on Twitter: @BrentW_KSR
The line is out for tomorrow’s game and Kentucky opened as a three-point favorite over the No. 1 team in college basketball. The total on the game is 146.5.
Kentucky’s seven-game streak of covering the spread was snapped in Starkville last Saturday with a push, then came an overall loss as a nine-point favorite in Tuesday night’s game against LSU. Will the Cats get back to their covering ways tomorrow night? If they do, we’re in for a fun evening.
Good luck to everyone.
By Nick Roush on ©February 15th, 2019 @ 4:15pm
Immediately after Tuesday’s home loss to LSU, John Calipari was disappointed in the outcome. Two hours later he sent his players a different message.
“It’s tough losing, but we needed this,” he told his team in a text message.
“People were moving in the wrong direction and not listening to what we were saying. I said it’s not only our team. We went from the best defensive team in the country to giving up layups. How does this happen? To giving up baskets, to not rebounding — We’re playing a half, and in the second half not playing. How does that happen?
“Most of it’s mental and most of it becomes what I talked about eight, nine days ago: there becomes an arrogance when you’re winning. We kind of got away from what makes us good, including individual players. Hopefully that’s a great lesson going into this game. I hate losing, but if you need to get rocked, then so be it.”
Kentucky looked like one of the most dominant teams in the country in the first half at Mississippi State and in the second half at Florida. Even though they were far from perfect for significant portions of those games, Kentucky was still good enough to win. That didn’t cut it against a good LSU team.
“I saw it coming,” Calipari said at Friday’s press conference. “I think you almost have to get knocked in the mouth and take a loss.”
After taking an eight-point lead into the halftime locker room, LSU knocked Kentucky in the mouth to start the second half. Despite that setback, he believes his team can turn it around after fighting for a win in the final minutes.
“There is a lot of growth left in us and a lot of it’s a confidence that if you’re going to be one of the last teams standing, you have a confidence. I loved how we finished the game against LSU. We finished with confidence. You can’t only be confident when you’re desperate. You gotta play that way and young teams, it takes time.”
To beat the No. 1 team in America, Calipari’s players must respond to LSU’s punch with urgency and confidence for 40 minutes.
Much of the focus on Saturday’s night game is on the matchups in the post. How the Cats defend Tennessee’s two bigs are important, but John Calipari knows Tennessee’s success comes from more than Grant Williams and Admiral Schofield.
“They’ve got a deep team and their guard play, the way they shoot and the things that they do,” Coach Cal said at Friday afternoon’s press conference. “They’re not winning with one guy or two guys. They’re winning because of how they’re playing. The biggest thing is because they lead the country in assists, they’re not going to beat themselves and they’re going to create opportunities and they shoot the ball well. You better play a good game. Better not be any tentativeness, just let it go and go play.”
Over the last three games, Calipari has seen too much tentativeness from Ashton Hagans.
“Ashton the last three games has not played well. Matter of fact, he’s not played well at all. This is a game where we’re going to need him to get back to where he was ten, twelve days ago when everybody was talking about him as the best on-ball defender in the country, a difference-maker, a creator, he pushes. That’s all gone away. We need that back.”
Over the last three games UK’s point guard has committed nine turnovers, while forcing just three steals. He’s averaging 4.6 points and assists through the three-game stretch.
“He’s a freshman. He hit a little bit of a wall.” Calipari believes it’s a hurdle Hagans can overcome.
“I just think you get tired. You lose focus and you get numb. Every game we play is the same. It’s someone’s Super Bowl. It’s an out of this world game, the stadium’s filled. Other teams are playing out of their minds and you kind of get numb to it and all of a sudden you’re not playing with the energy, the focus that you need to play with.”
Calipari added, “He’s had a heck of a year, he’s just had a bad week and a half.”