It’s that time of year. Regardless of your holiday affiliation, we all tend to find ways to celebrate the occasion and one another by giving each other gifts. That may not be the reason for the season, but it has certainly become a big part of the tradition in the winter holiday experience. If the Big Blue Nation were to make a “holiday wish list” of the things they wanted the most, what would be on that list? Feel free to add more to the list below, which hits on a few of the things I think Big Blue Nation wants the most this time of year”
1. A victory over Louisville
With the Louisville game just a few days away, I think I speak for the entire Big Blue Nation when I say a win over the dirty Cards, especially after watching them win a national championship, would be the best gift possible. It’s always nice beating Louisville, but this match-up feels like the rubber match after Kentucky won the 2012 title and Louisville won the 2013 title.
2. Matt Elam
Elam will make his college choice on January 4th. He’s down to Alabama and Kentucky. The vibe for Elam picking Kentucky is SO strong right now. Almost everyone believes that when it’s all said and done, he will end up a Cat. The pick up would be huge for Mark Stoops and his staff, as Elam is a 5-star player from the state of Kentucky. Beating the juggernaut Alabama for a recruit would be the icing on the cake. With all of the good feelings about Elam to Kentucky swirling around, anything other than that would be a bit of a holiday heart breaker at this point.
3. A quality win (#1 on the list would take care of that)
Beating Louisville would certainly take care of this item on the wish list, but the Kentucky men’s basketball team is in need of a quality win to boost its resume’. Although Kentucky only sits with 3 losses, all to quality NCAA tournament caliber teams, it’s time for us not to lose a good game and finally win one. The quality wins left on the table are few and far between with the state of the SEC these days. Kentucky needs to pick up as many as they can to have a better chance for a better NCAA tournament seed.
4. A full and energetic ERUPPtion zone night in and night out
I feel like we are beating a dead horse here at this point, so I won’t say too much about it. The crowd was GREAT on Saturday against Belmont. Let’s see if the crowd can continue to bring it for the rest of the season. It just makes Kentucky so much better. It makes Rupp so much better. It makes everything about Kentucky basketball so much better.
5. A top-15 ranked recruiting class
We already know that Stoops and his staff are compiling a knockout 2014 recruiting class. The pieces are already in place for a great and impactful class, only to be further padded by a 5-star Matt Elam commitment. Either way, the Cats are going to pull off what will likely be the best recruiting class the school has had. The class has a CHANCE to finish in the top-15 in the nation, which would be a huge feat for a new coach and a school coming off of back-to-back 2-10 seasons.
6. A consistent
Andrew Harrison everyone
It feels like Kentucky took some big steps in Saturday’s win over Belmont. The big question will be just how good can this team if EVERYONE is playing consistently MOST of the time? I know it’s hard to ask everyone to have a great game on the same night. It rarely happens. But we’ve seen what it looks like when 3-4 players are playing really, really well. It’s time for us to consistently see the likes of Andrew Harrison, Aaron Harrison, James Young, Willie Cauley-Stein, Julius Randle and Alex Poythress all play well on the same night.
7. An SEC win in football
It’s been far, far too long.
8. To never hear the phrase “Year of the Cardinal” again
Can we all make a pact that the above writing of “Year of the Cardinal” will be the last time any of us say or hear that term? I’m so sick of it. I’m so sick of it that it almost, I repeat ALMOST, makes me miss #L1C4.
Happy Holidays, Big Blue Nation.