Kentucky Sports Radio

University of Kentucky Basketball, Football, and Recruiting news brought to you in the most ridiculous manner possible.
November 21st, 2017

Cats in the NFL Week 11 Recap

Philip G. Pavely-USA TODAY Sports

It was a tough day for the Packers as Brett Hundley threw 3 interceptions on the way to a 23-0 loss to the Ravens. Randall Cobb had just 3 catches for 34 yards in the loss.

Za’Darius Smith was on the opposite end of things as the Ravens get back to 5-5 with a victory over the Packers, Smith finished with 2 tackles along with 3 QB hits in the win.

The Steelers are looking like the team that is going to challenge New England in the AFC as they extended their winning streak to 5 games with a 40-17 win over the Titans. Bud Dupree had a nice game with 2 tackles and one tackle for loss as the Steelers improve to 8-2. 

Wesley Woodyard had a quiet game in the Titans loss to the Steelers, the Georgia native had just 2 tackles as the Titans record falls to 6-4.

Avery Williamson saw his playing time increase against the Steelers, and finished the game with 4 tackles. Williamson’s performance in the last 8 weeks of the season will have a big impact on his upcoming free agency this off-season. 

Danny Trevathan was forced to sit out a 2nd straight game with a lingering calf injury as the Bears fell to the Lions by a score of 27-24.


Kentucky is the most inexperienced college basketball team in over a decade

John Calipari told us from the beginning this team would be rough to start the year, and he sure wasn’t lying. Five games into the year, the Cats are 4-1, but none of the victories have come in convincing fashion.

With just one junior and zero scholarship seniors, we all knew this Kentucky team was young, but how young exactly?

According to Ken Pomeroy’s data, this is the youngest college basketball team he has ever recorded since starting in 2007.

Over a decade, several ridiculously young Kentucky teams under Calipari, nothing like this.

Coach Cal talked about that statistic on the John Calipari Show and what it means for his Wildcat team this season.

Even with this team being so young, the Cats are still getting every team’s best effort, and they struggle as a result.

Because of this ridiculous youth, massive leads like the 21-point lead the Cats had last night against Troy magically disappear, and the end result isn’t as pretty as fans would hope.

We knew these kids were young, but I’m not sure people realized they were historically young.

No better time to mature than now, boys.


Matt and Mary Jo check the Hey Kentucky! voicemail before Thanksgiving

It’s almost Thanksgiving, and people across the Commonwealth are just happy and dandy, ready to spread the love. It’s a beautiful time, really.

Matt and Mary Jo went through the Hey Kentucky! voicemail to listen to all the wonderful messages people had for them, giving them a warm and fuzzy feeling before the holiday season.

Take a look below:

Also, the Hey Kentucky! crew knew a guy was guilty based on how he chewed his gum. Take a look:

For more Hey Kentucky! head here.


There’s Extra Juice at Practice Ahead of Governor’s Cup

Offensive coordinator Eddie Gran had a little extra pep in his step when he walked off the practice field.  Everybody left the field fired up.  After all, it is rivalry week.

“It’s rivalry week.  It’s awesome.  It’s what you coach for and it’s going to be a great atmosphere,” Gran said.  “I love the attitude.  They came out with a lot of juice.”

Garrett “Juice” Johnson agreed, and so did his quarterback.  The players know what is on the line this Saturday.

“There’s a little bit extra juice,” Stephen Johnson said.  “Guys are flying around a little bit quicker, knowing what’s at stake, knowing what kind of game this is.”

Since Johnson put Lamar Jackson and the Cardinals in a coffin to end the 2016 season, his life changed.  When he looks into a mirror he still sees the same ole Stephen, but everybody else sees the guy who beat the Heisman Trophy Winner and they want to talk to him about it.

“All the time.  The last couple days in class, people have come up to me to talk about it,” Johnson said.  “It’s a really big rivalry, something we don’t have to get motivated for.  You just have to come out and play.”

The hardest part: waiting until Saturday to take the field.

“It’s Louisville.  It don’t take nothing for us to get motivated for that,” said Vince Marrow.  “We want to close out with eight wins, represent this university well and play for these seniors.  This is really our first class that’s graduating.  We want to send these guys out with a win and get ready for a bowl game.”


Stoops compares Lamar Jackson to Michael Vick on the Mark Stoops Show

With the Governor’s Cup taking place at Kroger Field on Saturday, all eyes are on Lamar Jackson and how in the world the Wildcats are going to slow him down.

On tonight’s Mark Stoops Show, the Kentucky head coach compared the Louisville quarterback to former NFL superstar Michael Vick in terms of making guys miss and needing excellent team defense to limit his success on the ground.

So how has Mark Stoops and the Wildcat defense simulated the reigning Heisman trophy winner in practice?

Zy’Aire Hughes and Charles Moushey.

Beyond Lamar Jackson, Stoops realizes it’s going to take a strong effort out of his team to defeat Louisville on Saturday.

As far as personal success goes, Stoops says he’s happy with the development of the offensive line and how they’ve found the right recipe with the rotation. With Drake Jackson finding success at the center position, the rest of the pieces have fallen in line and the unit is consistent as a result.

Stoops says the running game has developed in a big way with the help of consistent play from the offensive line.

Stay tuned for news from the John Calipari Show.


Campus Starbucks Releases Basketball Spice Latte

Editor’s Note: The following was written by Harold Leeder, editor-in-chief of The New Circle Circular, Lexington’s #1 source of fake news you can’t count on.

For most coffee shops, Pumpkin Spice is the seasonal beverage. But here in the bluegrass, November means basketball season. That’s why Starbucks is now offering a basketball flavored latte.

Shift manager Denise walks us through the process. “We start with espresso and steamed milk. Then we add three pumps of the ‘Court Side Syrup’. It’s a mixture of locally sourced sweat from Rupp Arena and high fructose corn syrup. We finish it off by squeezing the air out of an entire basketball into each cup.” Denise tossed the deflated husk into a recycling bin. “The only dribbling those’ll be doing is on your chin,” she added with a smile.

“Everyone on the team has been in to try it.” said barista Kyle. “Except Dillon Pulliam. Not sure I’ve met him.” He looks at the name written on the cup he’s just finished and yells “Phillum. Your order’s ready. Phillum.” A saddened Dillon Pulliam takes the cup and mopes to the creamer station.

The flavor hasn’t been a slam dunk with all the patrons.

“I think it’s disgusting,” said UK student Shelton Manzana. “It smells like hot asphalt. Why didn’t they just put some lines on a macaroon?”

The company is also now offering some specialty Basketball Lattes named after the coaches. The ‘Joe B. Hall’ is decaffeinated with splenda. The ‘Rick Pitino’ is served with a splash of creamer onto your jeans. And the ‘Billy Gillespie’ comes with a shot of scotch on the side and a BLT with a bite taken out of it.

The coffee shop is also keeping with the season by selling some holiday themed music CD’s. Like Coach Cal’s harmonica heavy Christmas album, which includes the title track, “Harp! The Herald Angels Swing”.

The shop says they plan on keeping the flavor all the way to the NCAA. “Depending on how things go this could be on our chalk board till mid April,” says shift manager Denise. “We’re definitely not selling out of these anytime soon.”

To keep up with The New Circle Circular, like the Facebook page or follow Harold Leeder’s Twitter Account.


Jarred Vanderbilt participating in light basketball workouts

Just a few weeks ago, there were whispers five-star freshman Jarred Vanderbilt would not be suiting up for the Kentucky Wildcats this season. He fractured his foot in practice during the preseason, and despite an initial timetable for return listed as January, John Calipari was adamant that he wouldn’t rush him back to action anytime soon.

Following an exhibition matchup for the Wildcats, Calipari told reporters the team received positive news on a potential return for the injured wing sooner rather than later.

Last night before Kentucky’s victory over Troy, Vanderbilt was on the court for light warmups before fans got to Rupp Arena.

The Kentucky Men’s Basketball account posted a quick video on Twitter of the talented freshman moving around well:

On Friday night, Vanderbilt was working on light shooting drills and went through a small shootaround with the team.

This afternoon, Calipari released another segment of “The Mailbag,” where he talked about what the addition of Vanderbilt will bring to the Wildcats.

“Well the first thing is, we gotta get him on the court and see if he can play,” he said. “I wouldn’t want him to play at 70-80%. He’s gotta feel healthy enough to run up and down the court and fly up and down and feel good about it. At the end of the month, we’ll put him on the court, he’ll start practicing, and then we’ll play it by ear. Obviously having another talented player like Jarred really helps our team.

Sounds like we’ll see the talented freshman suit up for Kentucky in December at some point.

The Cats need an offensive spark, and they just might be getting one soon…


Get Discounted Governor’s Cup Tickets on Black Friday

UK Athletics

When you travel into the Black Friday chaos Friday morning, there’s one more place to add to your shopping list: Fayette Mall.

UK Athletics is offering discounted tickets for Saturday’s matchup between the Cats and the Cards.  Instead of paying $60 or $80 to watch the Governor’s Cup, you can sit in the upper level for just $40.  Tickets will be available at the Fayette Mall guest services location beginning at 6 a.m. until 10 a.m.

That’s not all you can get on Black Friday.  You can also save on tickets to the Harvard and UIC men’s basketball games, as well as women’s basketball and gymnastics tickets.

If you weren’t planning on helping send the seniors off with a Governor’s Cup victory at Kroger Field, you’re out of excuses.  Make the move to Fayette Mall Friday morning.

For more information click here.


Newspaper mixes up DeMarcus Cousins and Kirk Cousins

As we know all too well here at KSR, typos happen, and this one is pretty funny.

DeMarcus Cousins was ejected from last night’s Pelicans/Thunder game for elbowing Russell Westbrook in the head and, in their summary of the incident, one newspaper got their Cousins mixed up, much to Washington Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins’ delight:

Kirk’s street cred just went through the roof.


The KSR Football Podcast: Week 12 Loss to Georgia

 

After a loss to Georgia, all eyes are on the Governor’s Cup.  In honor of Thanksgiving and Rivalry Week, the KSR Football Podcast shared why they’re thankful to hate Louisville, they remember that one time Lamar did the Heisman pose and then fumbled, and…

—  Very important instructions for the listeners.

—  How Drew is giving the Cats good Mojo.

—  What UK does without C.J. Conrad.

—  Life after Stephen Johnson.

—  How many rushing yards does UK need to beat Louisville?

—  Dad Talk with Freddie and Jared.

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.

 


Learn about the many benefits of Anthem Medicaid

Now is the time to find the health insurance plan that is just right for you. Anthem has been around for nearly 80 years in Kentucky.

Anthem Medicaid serves members in all 120 counties in Kentucky. The benefits of Anthem Medicaid are endless: coverage for all ages, no copays, free eyeglasses for children and adults, the only Medicaid plan offering adults both glasses or contacts every year, free over the counter medicines with a prescription, and so many other benefits. Open enrollment runs from October 16 to December 15. To choose Anthem Medicaid call 855-306-8959 or visit benefind.ky.gov.


Chiming in on today’s Coach Cal vs. Coach K discussion

Ben Roberts over at the Herald-Leader took a deep dive into college basketball’s biggest rivalry: John Calipari versus Mike Krzyzewski on the recruiting trail.

The new narrative is Krzyzewski has overtaken Calipari’s throne as the king of recruiting, but is that really the case? And if so, how did he do it?

Roberts enlisted the help of some of the top national scouts and analysts to discuss whether or not it is true. They all seemed to agree that, yes, Coach K and Duke are at the very top; but Kentucky is right up there with them.

Roberts: Has Duke replaced Kentucky as the king of college basketball recruiting?

Prior to Duke’s theft of the 2015 national championship, Kentucky was undoubtedly the top dog in recruiting elite talent, and it wasn’t even close. But since stealing the Cats’ title that year, Duke surged ahead and landed more top-five players over the last three recruiting cycles, plus the current 2018 class. If we’re to only look at those six top-five signees, it would seem Krzyzewski has surpassed Calipari as the best recruiter.


Top-five prospects since Duke won the 2015 title:

DUKE
Brandon Ingram | #3 | 2015 (From North Carolina)
Harry Giles | #2 | 2016 (From North Carolina)
Jayson Tatum | #4 | 2016
Marvin Bagley | #1 | 2017
Cameron Reddish | #4 | 2018
R.J. Barrett |#1 | 2018

KENTUCKY
Skal Labissiere |#1 | 2015


Only in 2015 did Calipari land a top-five player (and it was the No. 1 overall player), but he did sign De’Aaron Fox, Malik Monk, Bam Adebayo and Wenyen Gabriel the very next year, who were all ranked in the Top 15. As noted in Roberts’ story, Duke “badly wanted” Gabriel, and lost him to Kentucky. Then throw in a fifth five-star player in the 2016 class, Sacha Killeya-Jones, and Cal landed more five-star prospects than Duke. Cal just didn’t have the two top-five players Coach K got, one of whom, Harry Giles, was an in-state commitment who stayed home and brought his best friend, Tatum, to join him.

Moving on to this past class, Duke landed the No. 1 overall player, Marvin Bagley, by convincing him to reclassify from 2018 and enroll early, way late in the process. It was a brilliant move by Coach K and his staff, but let’s not ignore how Calipari beat out Duke for Kevin Knox, who Duke really wanted. Knox wasn’t ranked in the top five, but he was a huge recruiting win for Calipari in a direct competition with Krzyzewski.

Duke is already off to a good start in 2018 with the early additions of Cameron Reddish and R.J. Barrett, who Kentucky recruited heavily. Those were definitely big wins for Duke, but Zion Williamson still has to decide and it’s unlikely he’ll become a Blue Devil. We also don’t have the final rankings for the class, which may not keep Reddish in the top five.

With that long-winded breakdown of how the “top-five” count is misleading, I’ll share with you an excerpt from Roberts’ story, to stress there’s no validity to Duke standing out above Kentucky in recruiting:

All of the recruiting analysts presented with the statistics of this top-five shift among Duke and Kentucky recruits in recent years reached the same conclusion.

“I see the numbers, but I don’t think there’s any meaning there,” Meyer said. “Each recruiting scenario is it’s own individual case. And those players who happened to be ranked in the top five, who chose Duke over Kentucky — they were going to choose Duke over Kentucky if they were ranked No. 50 in the country. That’s just where those guys wanted to go to school.

“So I don’t see any significance to it. It’s not like there’s some groupthink among top-five recruits. ‘Oh, we’re top five, so, if you’re top five you want to go to Duke, not Kentucky.’ That’s not how it works.”

Playing the numbers game, there’s no arguing Coach K has more top-five guys in recent years. But looking at a wider range of prospects and talent, Duke and Kentucky are pretty even, and both are way ahead of everyone else. It’s not that Duke has passed Kentucky; it’s that there is another program on the top tier with Kentucky.

Coach K and Duke joined the game, but Calipari and Kentucky are still playing it well.

Read more on the matter: Has Duke replaced Kentucky as the king of college basketball recruiting?

(Very nice work there by Mr. Roberts.)


Lamar Jackson Did Not Forget That Fumble

Remember that time Lamar did the Heisman pose, then fumbled?  I know you remember how that game ended, and unfortunately, so does Lamar Jackson.

The 2016 Heisman Trophy Winner has never been a colorful orator at the podium, leading many observers to wonder, ‘How much does he care?’  A take many Kentucky fans have pondered this week as Jackson adds to his NFL résumé, I regret to inform you that Lamar does in fact care.

After Jackson racked up 381 total yards and 4 touchdowns in a route of Syracuse, Jackson told reporters he still thinks about the fumble that led to Kentucky’s game-winning drive.

“I’ve waited a whole year for this game,” Jackson said. “Because I fumbled last year and we lost.  I don’t like that, so it’s going to be a good game.”

Against Kentucky Jackson accounted for 452 of Louisville’s 561 total yards and 4 touchdowns, but none of it mattered because of that one fumble.  A fumble that will live in infamy, a fumble that has been immortalized in the rivalry’s lore is now Jackson’s motivation.

They say, “what goes around, comes around.”  Kentucky fans can only hope karma does not rear its ugly head this Saturday at Kroger Field.


Missouri’s Michael Porter Jr. likely out for the season

Major breaking news for SEC Basketball: Missouri just announced that star freshman Michael Porter Jr. will undergo surgery on his back today and likely miss the rest of the season. Porter suffered the mysterious injury only two minutes into Mizzou’s season opener on November 10.

Here’s the release from Missouri:

Michael Porter, Jr. will undergo surgery on Tuesday, Nov. 21, in Dallas, Texas. The procedure, a microdiscectomy of the L3-L4 spinal discs, has a projected recovery time of three-four months and will likely cause him to miss the remainder of the season. Michael is expected to make a complete recovery, and the Mizzou Men’s Basketball program wishes Michael the best during this process.

And a statement from Porter Jr., projected to be one of the top picks in the 2018 NBA Draft.
“I really appreciate the support of my family & program as I begin this process. I’m thankful for the kind words & messages I’ve received from fans. Those mean a lot to me. I cannot wait to be completely healthy and playing the game I love, once again.”

The news is obviously a huge blow to Mizzou and Porter, but it’s also a blow to SEC Basketball. Even though Porter being out makes Kentucky’s games vs. the Tigers considerably easier, I was really looking forward to watching him play. After talking to him at SEC Media Day, I was floored by how down to earth he seemed for a player with his talent. Here’s hoping he makes a full recovery.


Kentucky Offers Another 2018 Quarterback

Montgomery Advertiser

Last night the Kentucky football coaches offered another quarterback in the 2018 recruiting class, the third since Jarren Williams’ re-decommitment.

Montgomery, Alabama quarterback James Foster announced on Twitter last night that he received a scholarship from the University of Kentucky.  A three-star prospect and the No. 14 dual-threat quarterback according to the 247 Composite Rankings, Foster was committed to play for Missouri from April through October.  Foster re-opened his recruitment the day after he received an offer from LSU.

Along with LSU, Foster also holds offers from Georgia, Louisville, Alabama, and most recently Florida State.  All eight of Foster’s Crystal Ball predictions are for Ed Orgeron’s LSU Tigers.

Since Williams’ second decommitment from Kentucky the Cats have also offered Matthew Baldwin and former Oregon QB Terry Wilson.

Watch Foster do work: