By Drew Franklin on ©May 22nd, 2018 @ 9:55am
On today’s very important Kentucky Sports Radio radio show, a collective effort of show callers and special guests will determine the winner of the KSR Food Bracket.
Will it be Outback or B Dubs?
We’ll find out today as the guys do the show from Louisville (while the CEO of iHeartMedia is in town).
Join in on the fun by calling (502) 571-1080 or send a text to the KSR Texting Machine at (859) 300-3264.
|Ashland||WCMI||93.3 FM T||LIVE|
|Bowling Green||WBGN||1340 AM||LIVE|
|Bowling Green||WBGN||107.9 FM T||LIVE|
|Elizabethtown||WIEL||106.1 FM T||LIVE|
|Grayson||WGOH||100.9 FM T||LIVE|
|Hopkinsville||WHOP||95.3 FM T||LIVE|
|Lancaster||WZXI||1280 AM||5-7 PM|
|Lancaster/Stanford||WZXI||95.5 FM T||5-7 PM|
|Leitchfield||WMTL||870 AM||10A-12N CST|
|London||WFTG||106.9 FM T||LIVE|
|Madisonville||WFMW||94.9 FM T||LIVE|
|McKee-Booneville||Peoples Rural Telephone||Cable TV Channel 209||LIVE|
|Morganfield||WUCO||98.5 FM T||LIVE|
|Paducah||WPAD||99.5 FM T||LIVE|
|Pikeville||WLSI||95.9 FM T||LIVE|
|Prestonsburg||WPRT||104.5 FM T||LIVE|
|Whitesburg||WTCW||95.1 FM T||LIVE|
|Whitley City||WHAY||98.3 FM||LIVE|
|Williamson, WV||WBTH||1400 AM||LIVE|
|Williamson, WV||WBTH||102.5 FM T||LIVE|
|50 Radio Affiliates|
1 TV/Cable Affiliate
*Affiliates subject to change without notice
Postseason baseball begins today at 2:00 on the SEC Network for the Kentucky Wildcats. Nick Mingioine’s club has an opportunity for redemption after an up and down regular season, but it will not come easy.
A ten-seed in Hoover, the Bat Cats’ first opponent is Auburn. Kentucky won two of three in March against the Tigers at The Cliff, falling 3-4 in another ill-fated Saturday match-up. If Kentucky can win one against Auburn, they’ll enter the double elimination portion of the tournament. If the Cats lose today, their time in Hoover is done. Regardless of what happens, UK will have to hit the road in the NCAA Tournament. Will they limp in, or enter with a little momentum?
Kentucky will have a pair of First Team All-SEC players in the lineup. Yesterday Luke Heyer earned the honor as a designated hitter while Kole Cottam has named the league’s top first baseman.
For more UK Baseball, check out the latest from Coach Keith Madison and Trey Huntsman, who will be in Alabama covering the Bat Cats for KSR this week.
Eight. More. Days.
There are only eight more days of “NBA Draft Decision SZN.” Yesterday I mistakenly relayed the wrong deadline, the NBA deadline. UK officials cleared things up and confirmed May 30 at midnight is the deadline for P.J. Washington, Wenyen Gabriel and Jarred Vanderbilt. We don’t know if Jarred Vanderbilt has met with or worked out for any teams, but we did find out last night that Gabriel has already auditioned for five NBA teams.
Terry Throws Touchdowns
The Kentucky football team isn’t on campus, but a pair of Wildcats are putting in work together in Oklahoma. Terry Touchdown and Isaiah Epps are trying to develop a deep ball connection and so far, so good.
— Terry Wilson (@TerryTouchdown3) May 22, 2018
Conference Finals Continue
LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers ran away from Boston with a 111-102 victory to even the Eastern Conference Finals at two wins apiece. The Rockets have an opportunity to even the Western Conference Finals tonight at 9:00 on TNT, but between you and I, that’s not gonna happen.
Through the Fog
How did Larry Collmus call the Preakness? That’s an excellent question. Even after watching him make the call, I don’t understand how he did it so well.
Good-Bye, Larry Culpepper
Dr. Pepper is retiring their college football spokesman. The man who shouted “ICE COLD!” in bowl season ads drew the ire of many, but count me as one who will miss the goofy dad who invented the CFB Playoff.
Election Day: Vote or Die
I don’t think Puff Daddy’s tagline is still cool on election day, but I still say it every time. Even though there aren’t many statewide offices up for grabs, it’s still important to perform your civic duty by casting your vote. At the very least, you can post a picture of your “I Voted” sticker on social media.
A Colorful Wildcats’ Conversation
The Canadian Lynx’s growl is a little bit different than the Kentucky Wildcat’s.
— ABC News (@ABC) May 22, 2018
We are one month away from the NBA Draft, and with the Lottery and Combine now in the rearview mirror, basketball analysts across the country are releasing new mock drafts. Sports Illustrated’s Jeremy Woo updated his projections today and has five Kentucky players going in the draft, but only two in the first round:
- 12. Los Angeles Clippers: Kevin Knox
- 13. Los Angeles Clippers: Shai Gilgeous-Alexander
- 43. Denver Nuggets: Hamidou Diallo
- 48. Minnesota Timberwolves: PJ Washington
- 52. Utah Jazz: Jarred Vanderbilt
As you are well aware, PJ Washington, Jarred Vanderbilt, and Wenyen Gabriel have until May 30 to decide whether or not to stay in the draft. TJ Walker doled out his predictions as to what they’ll do in the Insider Notes earlier today:
Here’s where all six players stand in the latest round of mock drafts:
|Shai Alexander||Kevin Knox||Hamidou Diallo||PJ Washington||Jarred Vanderbilt||Wenyen Gabriel|
|ESPN Top 100 (Updated 5/13)||12||15||37||51||63||—|
|ESPN (Updated 5/15)||12. LA Clippers||15. Washington||40. Brooklyn||—||—||—|
|Sports Illustrated (Updated 5/21)||12. LA Clippers||13. LA Clippers||43. Denver||48. Minnesota||52. Utah||—|
|Sporting News* (Updated 5/21)||12. LA Clippers||16. Phoenix (via Miami)||—||—||—||—|
|Gary Parrish* (Updated 5/16)||13. LA Clippers||14. Denver||—||—||—||—|
|NBADraft.net (Updated 5/17)||12. LA Clippers||11. Charlotte||52. Utah||—||—||—|
|Bleacher Report* (Updated 5/21)||12. LA Clipppers||14. Denver||—||—||—||—|
|The Athletic* (Updated 5/16)||12. LA Clippers||14. Denver||—||—||—||—|
|* First Round only|
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 Chad Kruger
— Chad Kruger (@HoofHearted21) May 21, 2018
When is there not a line?!
#9 Pat Ingram
@KySportsRadio I agree Saturday was your best yet on ESPN radio – definitely best chemistry.
— Pat Ingram (@pi609) May 21, 2018
It was worth waking up early!
#8 Mary Sky Fortune
— Mary Sky Fortune (@EsquireSky) May 21, 2018
Hey, he’s got priorities.
#7 Todd McFarland
@KySportsRadio new restaurant coming to a town without a Mexican restaurant. Name will be El KSRador
— Todd McFarland (@todd_ukfan) May 21, 2018
That’s a place I’d like to go!
#6 Bill Durbin
— Bill Durbin (@bdurb1230) May 21, 2018
Same here. Go Bravos!
#5 Chris Davis
— Chris Davis (@cmdcpa2) May 21, 2018
He’s a popular man!
#4 Rick Wood
Hey @KySportsRadio @MattJonestv @MattJonesRadio Don’t let the fact that @Outback is giving away Blooming Onions today influence the voting. #KSR #FoodBracket @ryanlemond @DrewFranklinKSR @ShannonTheDude #VoteBuying
— Rick Wood (@rewoodky) May 21, 2018
We play clean here at KSR!
— funKYcat75 (@funKYcat75) May 20, 2018
This one wins the internet.
#2 Scott Darst
— Scott Darst (@MountaineerCat) May 21, 2018
— josephschroer (@josephschroer) May 21, 2018
Is this a compliment?
Sadly we’re no closer to knowing if Wenyen Gabriel will return to Kentucky, but we haven’t heard much from him since the end of UK’s season.
Gabriel spoke with media members in Sacramento after his workout with the Kings. The stretch forward seemed upbeat and positive, but didn’t drop any hints about where he’s leaning in his decision making process, but that’s probably because he wasn’t asked.
Gabriel did say that he spoke with former teammate De’Aaron Fox when asked about what he knew about the Kings.
“I knew a little bit. I know there are already a lot of Kentucky players already play for the program. One of my former teammates De’Aaron Fox is already here. He said he loved it here. I asked him about the city and he said great weather. The fans are great over here and obviously the facilities are nice. They have a nice developmental program here. I mean, it’s just a great place and I love the energy around here.”
If you’re looking for anything and you’re willing to dig deep, his quote about the Kings’ developmental program was intriguing. It seems like Gabriel knows that if he gets any chance in the NBA he will be spending time in the G-League.
Gabriel mentions he has worked out for Sacramento, Brooklyn, Oklahoma City, Milwaukee and Utah.
Fox is joined by former Cats Willie Cauley-Stein and Skal Labissiere. The Kings have one of the youngest teams in the NBA that feature several stretch forwards and on the one hand there aren’t many (if any) established wings, which would be good for Gabriel, but on the other hand the Kings probably aren’t looking for more wings.
Best of luck Wenyen. At the latest we’ll know his decision in nine days.
By Drew Franklin on ©May 21st, 2018 @ 9:00pm
Hello there and welcome to the very first edition of the “Ask Anything Mailbox.”
In this Volume 1 of the anything-goes Q&A, I answer 10 of the many questions submitted by you, the loyal KSR readers, over the last week. I’ll get to the others in due time, but your response to my call for questions was quite enormous and I can only write so many words in one sitting.
So here we go, Ask Anything numero uno…
My wife and I are expecting our first child in October and it’s a boy. Naturally we have been kicking around baby names.
Question is: What do you think of the first name “Rupp”?
All my friends agree with me that it would be awesome and all her friends think I’m crazy. I’m campaigning hard for support. What do you think?
Congrats on the sex.
If you’re wanting to name your boy after Rupp, I much prefer the name Rupp over Adolph. In fact, I highly recommend staying clear of naming him Adolph. However, I do think there are better options out there. I would consider Doron or even like a Deelamb. You should also see what your wife thinks of Tayshaun or Heshimu or Nazr or Karl-Anthony. I like all four of those.
When is the last time UK had a winning SEC record?
I assume you mean football and the answer is 1977. Fran Curci’s Wildcats went 10-1 and 6-0 in the Southeastern Conference with wins over Mississippi State, LSU, Georgia, Vanderbilt, Florida and Tennessee.
Also, Google is your friend.
Hey Drew and gang – Lexington born and lifelong UK fan writing from San Francisco! Classic would you rather for ya – Would you rather: Eat tacos with Boogie Cousins OR watch Rick Pitino fall down a flight of stairs?
As much as I love to laugh at Rick Pitino, I do not wish bodily injury on anyone. Now if I got a pre-fall guarantee that he wouldn’t get hurt, I’d take the fall. But if there’s any chance Rick would injure himself, I just can’t pick that one because I’m not a bad person.
Can I pick tacos with Pitino?
Honestly, did your parents earn their pensions in the 80’s from Pepsico or something? I eat Taco Bell also but let’s face it, it’s a bad example of tacos and frankly limits your credibility on the taco subject, Tex Mex, and even BBQ Why BBQ? Because if you have no Tex Mex credibility it means you really have no Texas credibility either which limits you on brisket, an entire segment of delicious BBQ. It’s like dominoes or paying hush money to a porn star, it eventually touches everything.
I remember once being on a plane early in my career traveling from Chicago to Louisville returning to home in Lexington. At the time I had recently relocated to Chicago and was apartment hunting in advance of my wife joining me. I was seated next to an executive from Papa Johns who was lamenting the fact that the PJ franchises were having a hard time cracking the Chicago market and he did not understand why. I was unapologetic in my description that compared to mom and pop Chicago pizza restaurants and chains, North or South side, that his pizza was horrible! It was like a slap in the face but truth that he desperately needed. I went on to explain, all pizza is delicious, even shitty pizza, but great pizza is euphoric. Geno’s East, Aurelio’s, and Lou Malnati’s are all places that no self respecting human being would every fore go for an inferior product like Papa Johns, Pizza Hut, Little Caesars or Dominos if you lived in Chicago. I told him to focus on markets that do not have strong family chain presences or he will be having the same discussion 20 years later with someone else on the flight. I also told him he could compete with the late night but still delicious burritos as big as your head market after the bars close with a pizza by the slice strategy.Now, how does that relate to Taco Bell. Because it is the exact same example. Taco Bell is good because even even crappy tacos / pizza are considered delicious. At the same time, pretty much any other stand alone taco joint in the world serves better tacos then Yum Brands flagship Taco Bell. Hell, I even had one at a Jack box 20 years ago was better then TB and they are the same company and used a slice of cheese reserved for the burgers instead of shredded cheese. You also can’t say it is strictly price based as I fed an entire fraternity rush part for $80 bucks and it included a 100 tacos, 100 bean burritos, and a free t-shirt (that I kept) all from a lonely Taco Tico in Lexington.
I can appreciate loyalty to a high degree but I think your readers deserve an explanation as it can not possibly be because of the food. Did your parents meet at TB? Did your mother birth you at a TB? Perhaps you shared your first kiss over a mexican pizza at a TB? Fill us in Drew as something is clearly missing.
First of all, I don’t like your attitude. You’re coming at me with this Taco Bell slander and I find it offensive. Secondly, I don’t believe your airplane story. You made that up.
And so you know, my mother gave birth to me in a hospital and I hate the Mexican Pizza. Your Ask Anything Mailbox submission was the Mexican Pizza of Ask Anything Mailbox submissions.
Since Ryan loves to save money why didn’t he have his hair replaced with pubic hair. This would save him major $$$ on haircuts because it only grows to about an inch and stops growing after that.
I’ll let you take that up with Ryan. That is a mental image I don’t need.
My super senior year of college was the 38-1 season. In the second semester there were rampant rumors about Devin Booker and porn star Lisa Ann potentially being a thing. Like they were texting or they hung out. KSR might have even mentioned something about it on the radio show. Was this true? We heard she broke it off right before March Madness and he coincedentally started to play terribly for the remainder of the year, so me and my buddies always blame her.
Any insights are appreciated.
I wouldn’t blame Lisa Ann for Kentucky losing in the Final Four that year. I would blame Kentucky for crapping the bed in the final minutes of a close game. But there might be a little truth to the Lisa Ann/Devin Booker “friendship.” She said in a radio interview that the two texted back and forth before and after his games. Whether or not that is true is not for me to discuss, but she did say they exchanged texts on many occasions. She also said she wanted to have a threesome with the Harrison twins.
If we lose 2 of the 3 guys still in the draft but not projected as picks, what % is your confidence level we get the Travis kid from Stanford?
I think it’s very likely Kentucky lands Reid Travis if two or three leave for the draft. If only one leaves, Calipari may be content with what he already has in the frontcourt.
What does Drew actually do for KSR besides being a late 30’s creepy, drunken mascot?
I hate to break it to you, but I am not in my late 30s, nor am I even in my mid-30s. You would also be very disappointed to know how often I actually get drunk. As for the creepiness, I cannot think of any creepy activity I’ve engaged in, but thank you for the kind words and I’m sorry I’m not the person you want me to be.
My work with KSR includes but is not limited to writing 30+ posts on the website each week; staying on top of breaking news; co-hosting the radio show twice a week, although that will soon be three times a week; co-hosting all pregame shows; moderating the KSR live blog during all games, both football and basketball; co-hosting the KSR Football Podcast; weekly appearances and field packages for “Hey Kentucky!”; assisting in behind-the-scenes business operations, from generating revenue to planning for the new office; sinking the KSR Bowling Team’s point total each Wednesday; laughing at comments and messages to the KSR Facebook Page; and many other day-to-day tasks to further develop the brand and take over the world. On Sundays I sleep. A lot.
Personally, I think the radio show is the best when you are there to add your knowledge and quick-witted humor. Who dictates when you make a radio appearance? Do you get to do whenever you want or does Matt ask you to do specific days?
My current agreement with the good people at iHeartMedia, Inc. is to appear on two shows per week. I usually pick the days based on my own availability, my other KSR obligations, and what Matt has planned for the show for the week. A third day will be added to my weekly radio schedule later in the summer.
What’s the closest you’ve come to getting fired from KSR?
I don’t think I’ve come close, as far as I know. My nine years have been pretty free of controversy with Matt, Hubby and the rest of the crew. There has been plenty of public controversy (beginning with the Samantha Ryan incident early in my career) but never anything between me and anyone on the KSR team.
That being said, I can see the Ask Anything Mailbox getting me fired one day for revealing company secrets.
Submit your question(s) for an upcoming edition of the “Ask Anything Mailbox”…
Until next time…
By Aaron Torres on ©May 21st, 2018 @ 8:00pm
To quote my colleague here at KSR Nick Roush, we have officially reached that magical time on the annual basketball calendar simply known as “NBA Draft stay or go SZN.” Sure, a handful of college basketball’s biggest stars (guys like DeAndre Ayton, Kevin Knox etc.) long ago hired agents, entered the draft and never looked back. But there are still dozens of others who are still “testing the waters” without agents and trying to figure out what their futures hold.
Now in terms of Kentucky, there isn’t a player with more intrigue in this process than P.J. Washington. Since Washington declared for the draft shortly after the season without an agent, he has made it abundantly clear that he will only leave school if he is a first round pick – a stance which he re-affirmed at the NBA Draft Combine last weekend. And as I’ve written and tweeted about many times this spring, I think this is the right approach for Washington specifically. While second round NBA Draft money is better than ever, Washington is one of those guys who could really make a leap in next year’s draft if he comes back to school and improves a few elements of his game (most notably his three-point shooting).
So that’s the good with Washington, but after spending the last few weeks speaking with NBA people, college coaches and others “in the know” there is something else that would concern me if I was a Kentucky fan looking for Washington to return next season. It’s something that few are talking about, and has little to do with Washington himself. But it’s also something that could play a major role in his decision.
The Kentucky football team has extended a scholarship offer to the fastest-rising prospect in the region.
Entering the spring season, Jared Casey only had scholarship offers from Purdue, Toledo and Cincinnati. He transferred form Trinity to Ballard last year, but had to miss the entire season with a torn labrum. He returned to football this spring on the camping circuit. After taking home the linebacker MVP honors at the Rivals Camp in Nashville, the unranked recruit became a four-star prospect.
Now a consensus Top 20 linebacker in the country, Casey has picked up offers from Syracuse, Oregon, and Temple since the Rivals camp. Vince Marrow could not ignore Casey. Today the Big Dog visited Casey at Ballard and extended him a scholarship offer. It’s Casey’s first SEC offer and just his second in-state offer, behind only EKU.
Casey grew up a UofL fan, and he’s taken unofficial visits to the Cards’ campus, but the Cats offered him first.
You can learn more about Casey’s development from WLKY’s Dan Koob, who visited him at school last week.
Way back in 2010, there were reports that Mitch Barnhart was a top-three finalist for the athletic director opening at Kansas. I have no idea if that was true or if it wasn’t, but that is a thing people were saying at the time when Kansas needed a new AD in 2010. Sports By Brooks (RIP) cited multiple sources for it.
Now Kansas needs a new AD again after firing Sheahon Zenger on Monday. Zenger was unable to get the Jayhawks football program going, so he is now out of work.
This begs the question: Will Kansas give Mitch a call?
I think it’s unlikely Barnhart would leave for a new school at this point in his career, but I also don’t know any more about Barnhart than you do. I do know his hiring of Mark Stoops got the UK football program moving in the right direction, so Kansas would be wise to give him a look.
Barnhart is from Kansas and graduated from Ottawa University (in Kansas, not Canada), but Kentucky has been his home for the last 16 years. He’s also the longest-tenured AD in the Southeastern Conference and his contract has him at UK until 2022.
So as I said, I can’t imagine Barnhart leaving what he’s built up here in Lexington, but Kansas might make a phone call to check his interest.
By KSR on ©May 21st, 2018 @ 5:30pm
It’s time for postseason baseball. Trey Huntsman has already hit the road to Hoover, Alabama to prepare for Kentucky’s first game of the SEC Baseball Tournament. The Bat Cats had a disappointing weekend in Nashville, but a couple wins in Hoover could easily remove the bad taste from the BBN’s mouth. Highlights:
— This year’s surprise team in the SEC.
— Who Trey and Coach would start in the SEC Tournament opener.
— Three reasons to believe in UK at this week’s tournament.
— A game of streaks, it’s UK’s turn to get hot.
— The best non-baseball part of the SEC Tournament.
You can easily listen on the KSR App, available on iTunes and Google Play. Streaming online is simple through Pod Paradise. You can also get it directly to your phone by subscribing to Kentucky Sports Radio on iTunes or via Android’s Podcast Addict app.
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©May 21st, 2018 @ 4:45pm
The news that Zan Payne, son of UK associate head coach Kenny Payne, will join next year’s squad as a walk-on has been out there for a while, but this afternoon, Kentucky made it official, welcoming the Lexington Catholic star to the squad in a press release.
“I am very excited to a part of the Big Blue Nation,” Payne said. “Over the last eight years, I’ve seen the best of the best players and teams in college basketball come through Lexington, and to be a part of the tradition is a dream come true. For Coach Cal to allow me this extraordinary opportunity, words can’t express my gratitude and appreciation.”
Payne scored over 1,000 points at Lexington Catholic, but his senior season was cut short when he suffered a knee injury in December. Once hoping for a scholarship at a Division I program, Payne had to reevaluate his future, which Calipari is thrilled will include Kentucky.
“Every conversation Kenny and I have had about Zan has been about what’s best for Zan,” UK head coach John Calipari said. “I wanted Kenny to take the same approach with Zan that I had with Brad. Let the kid do what’s best for him and be there to support them. We’ve always been an option for him, but we wanted Zan to make this decision on his own. I’m so happy he’s decided to stay at home with us because he’s an underrated talent who is going to bring a lot of depth to our team. Like his dad, he’s got a fighter’s mentality and there is no doubt in my mind he’s going to scratch and claw his way to a role on this team once he get his knee healthy. One of the most gratifying times of my coaching career has been watching Brad grow and develop to the man he is today, and I’m so happy Kenny and Zan get that experience now. It will be fun to watch.”
For more on Zan, check out TJ Walker’s exclusive interview with Kenny Payne from last week:
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©May 21st, 2018 @ 4:30pm
This week, Kentucky’s draft prospects are criss-crossing the country to participate in pre-draft workouts. Today, Wenyen Gabriel worked out for the Sacramento Kings and tomorrow, Hamidou Diallo will work out for the Washington Wizards, who have the 15th and 44th picks in next month’s draft.
Diallo is one of six players in the group workout, alongside Chris Chiozza (Florida), Tiwian Kendley (Morgan State), Jarius Lyles (UMBC), Doral Moore (Wake Forest), and Ray Spalding (Louisville). Diallo actually met with the Wizards at last week’s NBA Draft Combine, along with the Philadelphia 76ers, who own picks 10, 26, 38, 39, 56, and 60.
Diallo didn’t participate in the 5-on-5 play at the Combine but once again posted impressive results in the athletic testing, including the third best lane agility time (10.53 seconds) and one of the top max vertical leaps (40.5″, down from 44.5″ a year ago). Last season at Kentucky, he averaged 10.0 points and 3.6 rebounds per game, and is currently projected to go in the mid-second round of the draft.
By Nick Roush on ©May 21st, 2018 @ 4:00pm
Kentucky could add another offensive lineman to the 2019 recruiting class this week. Three-star offensive lineman Jamari Williams said on Twitter he will announce his college decision this Friday.
A 6’4″ 275-pound lineman from Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, Williams plays with Kentucky quarterback commit Nik Scalzo. He holds more than 25 scholarship offers, but Williams’ decision is ultimately between two teams: Kentucky and Louisville.
Williams has proclaimed the Cats and the Cards as his leader at different points during his recruitment. UofL most recently earned that title on April 24, about two weeks after he visited Lexington for UK’s spring game, a trip he described as “perfect.” As of today, the banner of his Twitter profile is this:
It’s a safe bet that Williams will commit to Louisville, but Scalzo’s commitment to UK could have changed things enough to put him in blue. Stay tuned to KSR this Friday to see who will win the recruiting battle.
By Trey Huntsman on ©May 21st, 2018 @ 3:45pm
Kentucky’s big week in Hoover got off to a good start on Tuesday when their leading power threats gained All-SEC honors. Luke Heyer (DH/Utility) and Kole Cottam (First Base) were named First Team All-SEC following their breakout seasons at the plate and in the field. Heyer and Cottam finished tied atop the SEC leaderboard with 18 home runs this season.
Heyer was the breakout star of the SEC in 2018. The senior third baseman hit three home runs last season as a utility player off the bench before being named the starting third baseman prior to the 2018 season. In his first year as a full-time starter, Heyer led the league in home runs (18), RBIs (57), and total bases (140). Heyer was named SEC Player of the Week and National Player of the Week twice in 2018. The voters for All-SEC put Heyer at the utility spot on the First Team list, which is a good fit for the senior. Heyer did not commit an error in conference play while splitting time between third base and right field.
Huge year from @lukeheyer2, who was voted First-Team All-SEC as the DH/UTIL.
— Kentucky Baseball (@UKBaseball) May 21, 2018
Both Heyer and Cottam were in the conversation for SEC Player of the Year, but Florida’s Jonathan India beat out the two UK sluggers for the award. Cottam was probably closest to winning the award thanks to his dominant performance in conference play. The junior first baseman/catcher hit ten home runs (tied for first in the SEC) and drove in 25 runs (sixth) in conference games this season. Cottam took over at first base following the departure of Evan White last season. The Tennessee-native committed three errors this season and finished with an impressive .994 fielding percentage. Perhaps the biggest reason Cottam landed on the First Team was his knack for driving in runs in big situations. Cottam had two series-winning hits and homered in eight of the team’s ten conference series in 2018.
Congrats to @kole_cotton13 on being voted First-Team All-SEC at 1B!
— Kentucky Baseball (@UKBaseball) May 21, 2018
UK and their All-SEC sluggers will take the field on Tuesday against Auburn in the SEC Tournament First Round at 2 ET. The game will be available on SEC Network.
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©May 21st, 2018 @ 3:09pm
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Kevin Knox are Kentucky’s best draft prospects this year, and in turn, John Calipari made the rounds at the NBA Draft Combine last week to talk them up. In an interview with Jon Hale, Calipari said Shai and Kevin could be the steals of the draft ala Louisville’s Donovan Mitchell, who was drafted 13th last summer but is now one of the finalists for Rookie of the Year.
“Someone is going to take him, and everybody is going to say, ‘How did people pass on him?’” Cal said of Knox, who will turn 19 on August 11. “He’s going to be that. And you’re going to say because he was 18 at the time and who would have known?’ But that’s what I think will happen.”
Shai came to Kentucky as a four-star recruit but quickly established himself as the steal of the class, to the point the Cats could rarely survive an off-night from him.
“You’ve got to judge guys on can they make plays when the game is on the line? When he played bad this year for us, we lost,” Calipari said. “I didn’t realize it until like, ‘Holy s—, if he don’t play well, we’re going to lose.’ So, thank goodness he played well most of the year.”
Most mock drafts have Shai going to the Los Angeles Clippers at No. 12 or No. 13 and Knox anywhere from Charlotte at No. 11 to Phoenix at No. 16. More quotes from Calipari on Shai and Kevin at the link below.