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January 20th, 2017

Seth Davis picks Kentucky to not only lose to South Carolina, but score only 61 points

There are hot takes, and then there are takes so hot they’re just plain stupid; the one I’m about to share is the latter. Sports Illustrated’s Seth Davis released his predictions for this weekend’s game, and not only picked Kentucky to lose to South Carolina, but predicted the Cats will only score 61 points. Yes, the same Cats that are currently averaging 93.3 points a game. Obligatory, HUH?!

“It is nearly impossible to go into Rupp Arena and slow down the Wildcats’ ridiculously speedy attack, but if any team can do it, it’s Frank Martin’s Gamecocks,” Davis wrote. “They lead the nation in defensive efficiency, they are ranked 200th nationally in tempo, and they have not lost a game with senior guard Sindarius Thornwell in the lineup. South Carolina is especially proficient at locking up opposing guards. It’s much easier to take a team that wants to run and force it to play slow than the other way around. Yes, it won’t be easy for an offensively challenged team to put enough points on the board to pull this off, but that’s why they’re called upsets. South Carolina 62, Kentucky 61.

While I agree with Davis that Frank Martin’s team has one of the best defensive teams in the country, I just can’t see this Kentucky team scoring 61 points or less in any game. While South Carolina is only allowing 59.4 points per game this season, it’s worth pointing out that they allowed 68 to Texas A&M, a team Kentucky beat by 42 and held to 58. The fewest number of points Kentucky’s scored this season are 69 vs. Michigan State and 70 in the loss to Louisville. Not only is tomorrow’s game in Rupp, the Cats are coming off a tough road game in which two of the top scorers underperformed.

Kentucky won’t score 100 tomorrow and heck, they might even lose, but they’re definitely going to score more than 61 points.

[Sports Illustrated]

Monk & Briscoe putting in extra time in the gym after bad game vs. Mississippi State


There was a role reversal in the postgame locker room after Kentucky’s win over Mississippi State. Malik Monk and Isaiah Briscoe played poorly, so John Calipari made them get up and hug Derek Willis and Wenyen Gabriel, who turned in arguably their best performances of the season. The moment was a 180 from the North Carolina game, after which Cal made Derek and Wenyen hug Malik to thank him for covering up their mistakes with his 47-point performance.

[Briscoe] and Malik just played bad last game, and they had to go hug Derek and Wenyen. So, the hug went the other way this time. Those two saved those two guards.”

Monk really drew Calipari’s ire after he pulled up on the rim on a dunk, which earned him a technical and a spot on the bench. After the game, Cal likened the moment to Karl Towns’ technical for chinning up on the rim at LSU in 2015, but today, he compared Malik to another of his former players: John Wall.

“Here’s what I’m trying to explain to him. He is so good, just playing hard and making easy plays, you’ll do three outrageous things they’ll put on SportsCenter. Not even trying! You’re trying to get on SportsCenter. And if you remember, I went through that with John Wall and I said the same thing. John, you don’t have to lose your mind and do something nutty. Just play hard and you’ll make a play. And then he goes 1-9 but that one play was so outrageous they put it on SportsCenter. He’s the same.”

As for Briscoe, Calipari said the two met this week and after Briscoe admitted he played badly vs. Mississippi State (as he did after the UCLA game as well), Cal pointed out how far he’s come since last season.

“Here’s what I love. He and I met, I had a call, and I called him into the office. Two or three people called me, basketball people, and after the Mississippi State game, said, ‘He is so much better as a player.’ It’s incredible. He’s making free throws, he can make perimeter shots, his decision making. He’s even better defensively and rebounding than he was a year ago. It’s incredible. So when I called him in, I just said, ‘How do you think you played?’ He said, ‘I was awful.’ I said, ‘You were awful, but let me tell the calls I’m getting about you. Part of the reason this is happening, instead of blaming me that you were awful — a year ago — you’re taking responsibility yourself, that this is your performance, not mine, and that’s how you’re getting better.'”

What gives Calipari faith that Monk and Briscoe’s struggles in Starkville were the exception, not the norm? After a long day of film and practice, he looked out his office window last night and saw Monk and Briscoe putting in their own workout, long after their teammates had showered and gone back to the lodge.

I look out my window and Malik and Isaiah are in a full body workout, totally soaked, going again. Proud of that. Makes me feel great because they have to master their craft. They have to be responsible for their own performance and not blame. If you blame, you’re not getting better. If you take responsibility, you’ll get better. You’ll figure it out.”

Calipari wants refs to keep calling fouls, just “make sure they’re fouls”


As we’re all painfully aware, officials are calling more fouls than ever in college basketball this season. Over Kentucky’s last three games, 144 fouls have been called, and the Cats aren’t alone; SEC Basketball has become unwatchable as of late, but during his press conference today, John Calipari made it clear he wants officials to keep calling fouls…but only if they’re actual fouls.

“Let me just make my position clear: I think we’ve gotta keep calling fouls. Now, we’ve gotta make sure they’re fouls. So there are some replays that look and you say, well, that wasn’t even close to a foul. Those shouldn’t be called. There’s a forearm on a drive, there’s a body check on a big, those should be automatic calls. Call the fouls. On both teams.”

“Now, if one team’s fouling and the other team’s not, that’s when you get those fouls called because you’re feeling like, ‘I can’t call them all against the other team.’ Why not if they’re fouling every play? If the other team’s not fouling, don’t call — that’s when, how could they call that a foul, how could they call this a foul? Call the game the way we all want it to be. We want freedom of motion; we don’t want a guy driving to get banged three times before he shoots a layup and you say, why did he miss a layup? Well, probably the guy’s finger in his eyeball and his knee and his thigh kind of affected the layup. So, I’m about calling fouls. Better fouls. If the game is physical, it should be called.”

Calipari said he’s on the side of the referees on this matter, pointing out that he was behind the rule changes to call more fouls because the game was getting way too physical; however, what he doesn’t want is refs calling fouls that aren’t really fouls because they feel they have to call more this season.

“They’re being told to call fouls. The only issue is there are some that aren’t fouls that they’re calling,” Cal said. “Everybody says, nobody touched them, how did they call that? Probably not a foul they should have called.”

“Call the fouls. Does anyone want the game to go back to where they’re beating the crap out of each other? I support what they’re trying to do. As a matter of fact, I was one of the voices behind it. Call the fouls.”

Just make sure they’re actual fouls.

Kentucky opens as a 13-point favorite over South Carolina


Vegas has spoken and the Cats opened as a 13-point favorite over the Gamecocks in tomorrow’s showdown at Rupp Arena.

So far this season, Kentucky is 12-6 vs. the spread, 9-3 at home. South Carolina boasts the #1 defense in the country according to KenPom, allowing only 59.4 points per game, while Kentucky boasts the #2 offense, scoring 93.3 points per game. Which side will win out?

So, thirteen points. Kentucky hasn’t covered the spread in the last three games…are they due?

LIVE: John Calipari’s pre-South Carolina comments


Tune in now to catch John Calipari’s Friday afternoon press conference. He’ll have a lot to say about a tough opponent and maybe a little bit about his latest podcast.

Check ‘er out and come back soon for all of the quotes.

Keith Bogans named 2017 SEC Legend


Keith Bogans will represent the Big Blue Nation this year as our Southeastern Conference Legend in Nashville. Bogans and 13 other legends from around the league will be honored during the conference tournament March 8-12.

The list of honorees is as follows:

George Linn, Alabama
Olive Miller, Arkansas
Marquis Daniels, Auburn
Matt Bonner, Florida
Jimmy Pitts, Georgia
Keith Bogans, Kentucky
Tasmin Mitchell, LSU
Jason Harrison, Ole Miss
Dontae’ Jones, Mississippi State
Jon Sundvold, Missouri
Bobby Cremins, South Carolina
Ron Slay, Tennessee
Acie Law IV, Texas A&M
Shan Foster, Vanderbilt

Larry Conley (’16), Bob Burrows (’15) and Tony Delk (’14) are other recent UK’s SEC Legends.

Go Cats.

The Entertation Index: January 16-20


Each week KSR’s Funkhouser collects the best of pop culture. The Entertation Index collects the best of the week for your consumption.

Dogs, Reservoir — For some good reading for a break from the Inauguration festivities today, here’s a unique take on Quentin Tarantino’s 25 year-old Reservoir Dogs which posits that the film — long thought an exercise in the glorification of violence — is in fact a cleverly subversive film about how killers  should, in fact, be killed themselves. Check it out.
Link: Why Reservoir Dogs is Really an Anti-Violence Film

Down, Three Doors — The hit early 2000’s band and purveyor of such hits as “Kryptonite” and “Kryptonite” saw a sales bump last night after performing at president elect Donald Trump’s inauguration kick-off. As you can see from their upcoming schedule, things are really turning around for Three Doors Down.
Link: Three Doors Down Sees Brief Sales Bump After Performing at Donald Trump’s Inaugural Show (h/t @mattyglesias)

Gaga, LadyPeople Magazine breaks down everything we know about Lady Gaga’s upcoming Super Bowl Halftime Show, from her inspirations to what she might perform. Because if there’s one thing professional football fans demand, it’s MORE LADY GAGA.
Link: Everything We Know About Lady Gaga’s Super Bowl Performance


Poop Emoji — Folks, we’ve officially reached the bottom of the bag in terms of film ideas, with The Emoji Movie to premiere sometime in 2017 for children. In it, Sir Patrick Stewart will play the illustrious role of “poop emoji,” sure to turn the heads of Oscar voters next year. Other cast members include Julianne Moore in a stunning dual role as “dancing cat ladies,” Bradley Cooper as “water/rain droplets” and Dame Judi Dench as the Australian Flag.
Link: Sir Patrick Stewart Scoops Up Poop Emoji Role in “Emoji Movie”

Punk’d — Sure, you all remember when Zach Braff’s porsche got spray-painted with graffiti while he was in the liquor store (do you?), or when George Lopez was hilariously told his sewer line needed repair (hahahahaha OMG), but did you know Serena Williams pursued a fake-abducted infant down the interstate in her car? Or that someone unrelated to Punk’d pulled a gun on Hillary Duff during a prank? No matter what you feel about the show, some interesting tidbits here.
Link: The Wild and Sometimes Frightening World of Punk’d


Sherlock — Britain’s Digital Spy website breaks down the season (series?) finale of the BBC’s wildly loved series Sherlock, accurately pinpointing eighteen unanswered of the final episode. The biggest surprise of all being, of course, that Digital Spy only found eighteen unanswered questions in that hot mess.
Link: Eighteen Unanswered Questions and Plot Holes After Watching Sherlock’s Finale

Trump, President Donald — On the eve of the presidential inauguration concert, which featured patriotic country singer Toby Keith and soul singer Sam Moore, (now) President Donald J. Trump took the mic to tell the crowd “You’re not forgotten anymore. You’re not forgotten any more.” The crowd cheered as somewhere, quietly off in the darkened wings, a teary-eyed Three Doors down fist-pumped in unison victoriously.
Link: Trump Addresses Inaugural Concert Crowd

SEC Power Rankings: Gamecocks jump Gators for second



Let’s update our SEC Power Rankings as we go into the weekend!


1. Kentucky (16-2, 6-0)

Previous: 1

RPI: 5
KenPom: 1

Wins: Stephen F. Austin, Canisius, Michigan State, Duquesne, Cleveland State, UT Martin, Arizona State, Valparaiso, Hofstra, North Carolina, at Ole Miss, Texas A&M, Arkansas, at Vanderbilt, Auburn, at Mississippi State

Losses: UCLA, at Louisville

Kentucky won a foul fest down in Starkville, where Bulldogs fans chanted “OVER-RATED” while down to the Wildcats in the closing minutes of the loss. Saturday brings the Cats’ biggest challenge thus far in conference when SEC-unbeaten South Carolina comes to town.

2. South Carolina (15-3, 5-0)

Previous: 3

RPI: 25
KenPom: 22

Wins: Louisiana Tech, Holy Cross, Monmouth, South Carolina State, Michigan, Syracuse, Vermont, Florida International, at South Florida, Lander, at Georgia, Texas A&M, at Tennessee, Ole Miss, Florida

Losses: Seton Hall, Clemson, at Memphis

Moving up one spot to No. 2 is South Carolina for its win over the previous No. 2 team, Florida. The Gamecocks held the Gators’ offense to 52 points, 26 points below their season average.

3. Florida (14-4, 5-1)

Previous: 2

RPI: 3
KenPom: 6

Wins: Florida Gulf Coast, Mercer, St. Bonaventure, Belmont, Seton Hall, Miami, at North Florida, Charlotte, Little Rock, at Arkansas, Ole Miss, Tennessee, at Alabama, Georgia

Losses: Gonzaga, Duke, at Florida State, at South Carolina

Florida comes in third this time around after that ugly loss in Columbia at the hands of South Carolina’s stifling defense. There were 55 fouls called in the Gators’ first conference loss.

4. Georgia (12-6, 4-2)

Previous: 4

RPI: 40
KenPom: 43

Wins: UNC Asheville, Furman, George Washington, Gardner-Webb, Morehouse, UL Lafayette, Charleston Southern, at Georgia Tech, Auburn, Missouri, at Ole Miss, Vanderbilt

Losses: at Clemson, Kansas, Marquette, at Oakland, South Carolina, at Florida

Fifth-place Georgia is our No. 4 team in the power rankings following a win against Vanderbilt in Athens. Remember the name Yante Maten for the SEC Player of the Year race.

5. Arkansas (14-4, 3-3)

Previous: 5

RPI: 35
KenPom: 47

Wins: Fort Wayne, Southern Illinois, UT-Arlington, Mount St. Mary’s, Stephen F. Austin, Austin Peay, Houston, North Florida, Texas, North Dakota State, Sam Houston State, at Tennessee, Missouri, at Texas A&M

Losses: at Minnesota, Florida, at Kentucky, Mississippi State

Arkansas went down to College Station and beat Texas A&M in a tight one. A couple of months ago that might be considered a big upset; however, today it is not.

6. Alabama (11-6, 4-1)

Previous: 7

RPI: 78
KenPom: 65

Wins: Coastal Carolina, Ball State, Saint Louis, Charleston Southern, South Carolina Upstate, Arkansas State, Stetson, at Mississippi State, Vanderbilt, at LSU, Missouri

Losses: Dayton, Valparaiso, at Texas, at Oregon, Clemson, Florida

Alabama took the work week off as it drew Missouri for a Wednesday night game. The Crimson Tide showed up and went through the motions to claim the easiest of victories in the SEC.

7. Ole Miss (11-7, 2-4)

Previous: 8

RPI: 43
KenPom: 91

Wins: UT Martin, UMass, Oral Roberts, Saint Joseph’s, Montana, Memphis, Murray State, Bradley, South Alabama, at Auburn, Tennessee

Losses: Creighton, Middle Tennessee, at Virginia Tech, Kentucky, at Florida, Georgia, at South Carolina

After opening its SEC slate with the top four teams in these here power rankings, Ole Miss and its eighth-toughest schedule in the country handed Tennessee an L in Oxford. Sebastian Saiz recorded his SEC-leading 12th double-double of the season in the win.

Look for Ole Miss to shoot up these rankings as its workload gets a lot lighter as the season rolls on.

8. Tennessee (9-9, 2-4)

Previous: 7

RPI: 71
KenPom: 58

Wins: Appalachian State, at Chaminade, Georgia Tech, Presbyterian, Tennessee Tech, Lipscomb, at East Tennessee State, at Texas A&M, at Vanderbilt

Losses: Chattanooga, Wisconsin, Oregon, at North Carolina, Gonzaga, Arkansas, at Florida, South Carolina, at Ole Miss

Tennessee traded places with Ole Miss after dropping one on the road to the Rebels. The Vols’ .500 record looks rough, but keep in mind that eight of the nine losses were against top-50 teams as they play one of the toughest schedules in the nation.

9. Mississippi State (12-5, 3-2)

Previous: 10

RPI: 118
KenPom: 124

Wins: Norfolk State, Boise State, UTEP, Northwestern State, Oregon State, Georgia State, Southern Miss, Morehead State, UMKC, at LSU, at Arkansas, Texas A&M

Losses: UCF, Lehigh, East Tennessee State, Alabama, Kentucky

This is as high as Mississippi State will go until it scrubs “Starkvegas” off its baseline and learns the proper use of the “OVER-RATED” chant.

I think De’Aaron Fox just scored again.

10. Vanderbilt (8-10, 2-4)

Previous: 9

RPI: 81
KenPom: 72

Wins: Belmont, Norfolk State, Santa Clara, Tennessee State, High Point, Chattanooga, at LSU, Auburn

Losses: Marquette, Bucknell, Butler, Minnesota, at Middle Tennessee, at Dayton, at Alabama, Kentucky, Tennessee, at Georgia

Vanderbilt will need to pick up some wins (but not too many) if it plans to finish seventh in the conference for a third straight year. The Commodores have now lost four straight after a 2-0 start with wins over LSU and Auburn, two of the SEC’s bottom-dwellers.

11. Auburn (12-6, 2-4)

Previous: 12

RPI: 73
KenPom: 99

Wins: North Florida, Georgia State, Eastern Kentucky, Texas Tech, South Carolina Upstate, UAB, Coastal Carolina, Mercer, Oklahoma, UConn, at Missouri, LSU

Losses: Purdue, Boston College, Georgia, at Vanderbilt, Ole Miss, at Kentucky

Congratulations on your 500th win, Bruce Pearl!

12. Texas A&M (9-8, 1-6)

Previous: 11

RPI: 90
KenPom: 61

Wins: Northwestern State, American, CSU Northridge, Virginia Tech, Texas A&M-CC, Denver, South Carolina State, St. Francis, LSU

Losses: USC, UCLA, Arizona, Tennessee, at Kentucky, at South Carolina, at Mississippi State, Arkansas

Last year’s SEC co-champion and tournament runner-up has been the conference’s biggest disappointment in 2016-17. Picked third in the preseason by the media, A&M has now lost five of six and has only beaten two teams inside the top 180 in RPI all year long.

13. LSU (9-8, 1-5)

Previous: 13

RPI: 132
KenPom: 144

Wins: Wofford, Southern Miss, North Florida, Old Dominion, Houston, North Carolina Central, Texas Southern, Charlestown, at Missouri

Losses: Wichita State, VCU, at Wake Forest, Vanderbilt, Mississippi Sate, at Texas A&M, Alabama, at Auburn

Johnny Jones is absolutely robbing LSU Athletics at this point. THEY’RE PAYING HIM $1.5 MILLION A YEAR AND HE COULDN’T MAKE THE TOURNAMENT WITH BEN SIMMONS.

14. Missouri (5-12, 0-5)

Previous: 14

RPI: 274
KenPom: 188

Wins: Alabama A&M, Tulane, Northwestern State, Western Kentucky, Miami (OH)

Losses: Xavier, Davidson, North Carolina Central, Arizona, Eastern Illinois, Illinois, Lipscomb, LSU, at Georgia, Auburn, at Arkansas, at Alabama


The Matt Jones Podcast: E61 Bomani Jones


ESPN’s Bomani Jones took some time out of his busy schedule to join the Matt Jones Podcast.  The two discussed his television show Highly Questionable, a variety of topics in the sports world and more, including…

—  Why Tubby Smith is appreciated more now than when he was at UK.

—  Bobby Petrino is a “sociopath.”

—  Does Bomani believe Pitino knew?

—  Small Town U.S.A.

—  How Bomani deals with Clay Travis’ P.C. Police.

You can easily listen on the KSR App, available on iTunes and Google Play.  You can also get it directly to your phone by subscribing to “Kentucky Sports Radio” on iTunes, streaming on Podbayor via Android’s Podcast Addict app.

BBNBA: The Knicks are a train wreck

Screen Shot 2017-01-20 at 12.33.36 AM

For the past few years, the New York Knicks have been finding new ways to surround Carmelo Anthony with one or two good players, as well as a whole heap of terrible players. A lot of times, it ends up in disaster. Take away the 2012-13 season and the Knicks haven’t been good since 1999-2000. While it may be torture for Knicks fans everywhere, their misfortune leads to plays like the clip below. 13 seconds remaining, down by 3, and the Knicks don’t even attempt a shot. I’m convinced the only reason Melo wants to stay in New York is that he can do whatever he wants for that team and he’s still going to be the main guy until Porzingis becomes a super star.

The Knicks had the ball, down 3, with 12 seconds left…they failed to get a shot up.

A video posted by SportsCenter (@sportscenter) on

Moving on to former UK guys now. Enough of my making fun of the Knicks.


John Wall, Washington Wizards (113-110 win over Knicks)

 37  11-21  1-3  6-8  0  5 5  13  3 0  2  2  +11  29

The Wizards’ social media staff were kind enough to put together all of Wall’s highlights into one video for us. Props to you guys.


Karl-Anthony Towns, Minnesota Timberwolves (104-101 win over Clippers)

 41  17-24 1-2  2-2  5  7  12  5  1  0  2  3  +5  37

Karl-Anthony Towns took over in the fourth quarter to lead the T’Wolves to a comeback victory over the Clippers. He scored 9 of his team’s last 11. Watching him grow into  a super star is so fun to watch.

How did he even get this shot off?  Are you kidding me?

Big cram for KAT.


Eric Bledsoe, Phoenix Suns (118-103 loss to Cavaliers)

 38  7-21  2-5  6-7  2  4  6 9  4  0  4  3  -9  22

Nifty little spin in the lane for Eric Bledsoe.


Devin Booker, Phoenix Suns (118-103 loss to Cavaliers)

 37  4-12  0-4 13-14  1  6  7  8  0  0  4  3  -8  21


Tyler Ulis, Phoenix Suns (118-103 loss to Cavaliers)

 10  1-4  0-1  0-0  0  1  1  0  1  0  2  1 -6  2



Brandon Knight, Phoenix Suns (118-103 loss to Cavaliers)

 4  1-2  1-1  0-0  0  0  0  0  0  0  1  4  -3  3



DeAndre Liggins, Cleveland Cavaliers (118-103 win over Suns)

 17  1-3  1-2  2-2  0  0  0  1  0  0  0  2  -1  5



Jamal Murray, Denver Nuggets (118-104 loss to Spurs)

 26  4-15  2-8  3-3  1  5  6  2  0  0  0  2  +2  13

Get up Jamal!

Really good off-the-ball movement from Murray here.

Tune in for tonight’s loaded NBA schedule:

  • Portland Trail Blazers at Philadelphia 76ers, 7pm ET
  • Toronto Raptors at Charlotte Hornets, 7pm ET
  • Milwaukee Bucks at Orlando Magic, 7pm ET
  • Sacramento Kings at Memphis Grizzlies, 8pm ET
  • Brooklyn Nets at New Orleans Pelicans, 8pm ET
  • Golden State Warriors at Houston Rockets, 8pm ET on ESPN
  • Chicago Bulls at Atlanta Hawks, 8pm ET
  • Utah Jazz at Dallas Mavericks, 8:30pm ET
  • Indiana Pacers at Los Angeles Lakers, 10:30pm ET on ESPN


Mohamed Bamba currently on campus for official visit


American Airlines Flight 5520 delivered Mohamed Bamba to Lexington last night around 11:43 pm to begin his official visit to the University of Kentucky. Yes, it is weird that I know that — but don’t act like you’re not excited to have the five-star big man on campus, too.

Back to what I was saying, Bamba is taking his official visit to Kentucky this weekend with a lot of outside noise–namely his friends Quade Green and Hamidou Diallo–steering him toward a UK commitment. Just last week, 247 Sports’ Jerry Meyer switched his prediction for Bamba from Duke to Kentucky due to those relationships, and Kentucky pursuing him with “more fervor.”

Bamba’s current trip to Lexington is his second this basketball season; he took an unofficial visit to Big Blue Madness back in October.

It sure would be nice to see him go ahead and pull the trigger on a commitment and blow off that visit to Duke next month.

Get in here, Mo.

Mohamed Bamba
Power Forward/Center| 6-11 | 210 lbs.
New York, NY | Westtown
AAU: PSA Cardinals
ESPN No. 4 | 2 C Top247 No. 3 | 2 PF
Rivals No. 4 Scout No. 2 | 2 C

Matt and Ryan back in studio to wrap up the week (Friday Show Thread)


After a fun and packed show at the new Sleep Outfitters yesterday, Matt and Ryan are back in studio for today’s show. It is a condensed version, though, as inauguration coverage will bump them off the air a little earlier than usual today.

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

Listen to Kentucky Sports Radio


Friday’s Top 10: Inauguration Day Edition

Welcome to Trump’s America, America!

Today at approximately noon o’clock, Donald J. Trump will be sworn in as the 45th President of the United States. From that moment forward, for the next four years, he will be the most powerful man in the world. Love him or hate him, support him or loathe him, today he becomes our Commander In Chief — and the first to have had a small cameo in the Home Alone franchise.

Now I know mentioning politics is a surefire way to spark a never-ending argument between several anonymous posters in the comments section, but I simply can’t ignore the changing of the guard in the White House on this big day. Trump’s America is open for business around your lunch break, so plan accordingly. It’s a new day.

To the morning notes and thoughts…


1. Bob Knight thinks Donald Trump could be the best president ever.

Keeping the presidential theme for one more moment, Bob Knight, everyone’s favorite curmudgeon, believes Trump could go down as our best president.

“He’s going to be as good a president as we’ve ever had, and maybe the best,” Knight told TMZ.

Knight also said Trump could’ve played basketball for him at Indiana, hypothetically speaking.

2. Justin Moore survived his concert in Corbin last night.

As far as I know, there was no bodily harm to country music singer Justin Moore, who went on a Twitter tirade after Kentucky beat Arkansas earlier this month.

Moore sent out a tweet before last night’s concert promising to never send drunk tweets again:

And then he broke out the UK shirt during the show:



He can play a hundred Corbin shows and issue a hundred promises and hold a hundred UK t-shirts, but it’ll never take back the night Big Blue Nation put him in an online body bag.

3. DJ Eliot to begin new gig at Colorado today, but not before issuing a statement to UK fans:

“I would like to open by thanking Mitch Barnhart, the administration, the Lexington community and all of the Big Blue Nation for their support and dedication to Kentucky football, and their support of me, my family and our players.  I would like to thank the players for their commitment to the vision, giving 100% every day and competing like the quality men they are growing into.  They poured their hearts into the last year and I am so proud of them. Finally, I would like to thank Coach Stoops for the opportunity, for his trust, all that I learned from him, and most importantly for his friendship.  Coach Stoops and his family have been a part of my life since my playing days at Wyoming and will remain a part of my life into retirement.  I am thankful for all he has done for me and proud of what we have accomplished here at Kentucky.  We leave with positive memories of our time in Kentucky and of the milestones we celebrated in our kids’ lives and wish you all very much continued success.”

A press release in Boulder said Eliot will have a three-year deal with the Buffs — or whatever they’re called out there.

4. Kentucky still recruiting Russ Yeast.

Mark Stoops paid an in-home visit to former UK commit Russ Yeast on Wednesday, according to a tweet Yeast sent last night:

Yeast, who is the son of former UK great Craig Yeast, has been committed to Louisville since October, but Stoops’ visit suggests he is going to fight all the way to National Signing Day for the player he once had wrapped up.

5. Want to advertise on KSR?

We have a new website opportunity available immediately. Send an e-mail to Maria at for more information. Serious inquiries only please. She’s really busy keeping us in line.

6. Louisville looked really good last night.

And that is all I am going to say about that.

7. KenPom predicts Kentucky will beat South Carolina by 12.

We won’t know the line on tomorrow’s game until later today, but Ken Pomeroy’s fancy mathematics predict Kentucky will beat South Carolina, 79-67.

If that proves to be true, which it won’t, it will be only the third time this season that Kentucky failed to reach 80 points. The others were Michigan State (69) and Louisville (70).

8. Flashback Friday: That time Calipari was ejected in Columbia.

Let’s throw it back to last season when Coach Cal got tossed against the Gamecocks:

Good times.

9. We will hear from Calipari later today.

Coach Cal will hold his pre-South Carolina press conference around 2:00ish this afternoon to look ahead to tomorrow’s first place game and, I assume, say something about the release of his latest Cal Cast. As always, we will have a live video stream and all of the notes and quotes here on Kentucky-Sports-Radio-dot-com. So stick around.

10. Today’s radio show will be cut short for inauguration coverage.

Be ready for your favorite morning show to go off the air around 11:35 am today as the station turns to live coverage from Washington DC. Matt did not like my idea of selling today’s show as the KSR inauguration pregame show.

January 19th, 2017

The 8 Cheesiest Moments from John Calipari & Rick Pitino’s Podcast


Late last night, John Calipari’s much-anticipated podcast with Rick Pitino was released, giving fans on both sides lots to talk about today. We’ve already recapped the podcast for you, which included some great moments in which Rick describes his early years at Kentucky, stories about Five Star Basketball Camp, and even a discussion about the scandal at UofL; however, there’s PLENTY of over-the-top cheesiness in between. From Calipari’s odd “fake news” skit at the start to his constant maniacal laughter throughout, it’s a good thing this podcast was sponsored by Papa John’s because it’s cheesy as hell.

In that spirit, I ranked the cheesiest moments of the podcast by the one thing Calipari professes to love most in this world: Papa John’s famous cheese sticks! On my scale, one cheese stick is charming, five cheese sticks is lactose overload.

1. The Opening Skit papacheesestickpapacheesestickpapacheesestickpapacheesestickpapacheesestick

I felt like a kid on Christmas morning when I saw the podcast had been released overnight. I quickly downloaded it and tuned in, ready for fireworks. Well, I’m not sure anything prepared me for Calipari’s fake news skit, which might be the corniest thing I’ve ever heard in my life. You know it’s a gotta be a joke early on when Cal “invites Rick in” and you can hear the door “slam,” and then he breaks into a bit about Rick stealing Ellen’s brownies.

“Hey, yo, those aren’t your brownies, my wife made those for one of our players. I said get your hands — hey you –”

What follows is an odd sequence of sound effects: growling, Cal yelping, karate chop grunts, swords clashing, more growling, crashing, etc. etc. etc. Finally, Cal says “FOLKS, THAT WAS FAKE NEWS,” because fake news is all in the real news these days.

Thankfully, this was by far the cheesiest moment of the episode.

2. The Blue Apron Ad with Ellen papacheesestick

As always, Ellen and Calipari’s Blue Apron ad was just adorable. Bucatini pasta bolognese with shredded brussels sprouts! Yum.

3. The Book Talk papacheesestickpapacheesestickpapacheesestickpapacheesestick

Have you heard Calipari has a new book out? No? Well, he’s here to make sure you and Rick Pitino know. In fact, that’s the first thing he brings up when Rick gets on the line.

Cal: “I gotta ask you a question before we get started: Have you read my new book?”

Rick: “When I looked at the chapters and saw ‘Assembling the Talent’ is the number one chapter, I immediately bought five copies, one for each assistant coach.”

Yeah, that’s completely bogus. And, of course, Cal ends the podcast by plugging his book again.

4. Pitino bringing up 1-8 papacheesestickpapacheesestickpapacheesestick

Props to Pitino for bringing up his old record vs. Cal at Kentucky before Cal had the chance. After Cal moaned about having to live with the loss to Louisville for a year, Pitino quipped, “Well how would you like to live with being 1-8?”.

This is the laughter that followed:

Actually, that laugh is probably genuine.

5. Crazy fan stories! papacheesestickpapacheesestickpapacheesestick

Calipari and Pitino share a unique bond in that they both understand better than anyone how crazy Kentucky fans can be. Both have been considered gods in the state, and it was fun to hear Rick verify the urban myth that fans used to take dirt and grass from his yard, and share a new story about how a crazy woman dropped off a VHS of “The Bodyguard” at his house after they lost to Louisville.

Calipari was giggling like a baby after the dirt in a jar story:

6. Cal ribbing Pitino for recommending him for the New Jersey Nets job papacheesestickpapacheesestickpapacheesestickpapacheesestick

Calipari’s pretty self-deprecating about his short tenure with the Nets, a job for which Pitino recommended him. Cal couldn’t help getting a jab in about it, asking Rick if he did it on purpose.

They both got a laugh out of that one:

7. Talking about sons! papacheesestickpapacheesestickpapacheesestick

Inevitably, the talk turned to Calipari and Rick’s sons, and Rick shared a story about his Louisville team playing his son Richard’s Minnesota team back in Puerto Rico back in 2014. After the game, Rick said his son blew by him in the handshake line. Oh, the nerve!

Calipari thought it was great:

8. Calipari trying to take credit for the 1996 National Championship papacheesestickpapacheesestickpapacheesestickpapacheesestick

After Cal got Rick to talk about the UofL scandal, the mood lightened when Cal jokingly tried to take credit for UK’s 1996 title after Rick said he decided to play Anthony Epps at point guard instead of Tony Delk after playing Calipari and UMass.

Cal: “Do you give me credit for the national title then? No?”

Rick: “I didn’t.”

Cal: “Well, now we did. Now I helped you.”

Thankfully, it was over after that, because it was pretty clear the fake laughter that followed was definitely fake:


Whether you’ve listened to the podcast or not, do yourself a favor and listen to this laugh track I made of all of Cal’s maniacal laughter in the podcast. It might be one of my favorite things ever:

Mark Stoops is Still Recruiting Russ Yeast



Mark Stoops may have lost the battle, but he’s determined to win the war.

Russ Yeast, the 4-star athlete and son of former UK great Craig Yeast, pledged his allegiance to the blue and white early in the recruiting process, but decided to re-open his recruitment last June.  Four months later, Yeast decided it was in his best interest to become a Card.  Mark Stoops hasn’t quit fighting.

The Under Armour All-American was offered by Notre Dame and Stoops’ brother Bob this week.  Yeast revealed he also received in-home visits from UofL and Notre Dame yesterday.  Mark Stoops has a 33 percent chance of flipping Yeast back to Kentucky according to the 247 Crystal Ball.

If Yeast flips, this is what you’ll see at Kentucky.