It’s happened time and time again this season: just when you get comfortable with Kentucky, →
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©February 10th, 2016 @ 12:56pm
You’re looking at former Tennessee wide receiver Drae Bowles, who may be one of my new favorite people on Earth. According to a federal lawsuit filed by six unnamed UT female students — five of which are alleged rape victims — Bowles was confronted and assaulted by his Tennessee teammates in 2014 for helping a woman who accused the players — A.J. Johnson and Mike Williams — of rape.
From The Tennessean:
Bowles took the woman to a hospital on the night of the alleged rape in November 2014 and supported her decision to report the incident to authorities, according to the lawsuit.
While the woman, a student-athlete, was meeting with executive senior associate athletics director Jon Gilbert, senior associate athletics director Mike Ward and her coach, she received a message from her roommate “who was witnessing at that moment several football players jumping” Bowles, the lawsuit says. The woman informed the athletics officials of the incident and was told they would “look into it,” according to the suit. The lawsuit says “athletic coaches were present during that altercation.”
Days later, the woman learned that Bowles was assaulted a second time at the team facility by the same players, the lawsuit says. She reported the second assault to university administrators as well.
Bowles has since transferred to UT-Chattanooga, a decision the lawsuit claims he made after being victimized by his teammates. The plaintiffs argue that the incident with Bowles is just one of many that have contributed to a “hostile sexual environment” at UT, one which chancellor Jimmy Cheek, AD Dave Hart, and Butch Jones have failed to address. The lawsuit also claims that former UT linebacker Curt Maggitt admitted to police that the second assault on Bowles took place, adding more smoke to this fire. Williams and Johnson face separate trials set to begin this summer, for which Bowles has reportedly received a subpoena to testify.
All in all, a terrible look for the Tennessee football program. To read more details, check out The Tennessean.
By Drew Franklin on ©February 10th, 2016 @ 12:00pm
Everyone join me in wishing a big Happy Birthday to John Calipari, head coach of your University of Kentucky Wildcats.
Coach Cal turns 57 years young today and he is celebrating in New York City, according to this tweet from his “favorite child.”
— Dr.SicilianoCalipari (@TheErinCalipari) February 10, 2016
Leave him a kind message below and we’ll make sure he sees them.
By Drew Franklin on ©February 10th, 2016 @ 11:15am
Jay Bilas updated his ranking of the 68 best teams in college basketball today and he has the Kentucky Wildcats in his top 20.
The Cats rank 19th in Volume VI of The Bilas Index for the 2016 season:
19. Kentucky Wildcats
In 15 games this season, Tyler Ulis has been responsible for at least 10 of Kentucky’s field goals. He did so only once last season. Kentucky gives up an assist on only 40 percent of its opponents’ field goals, the lowest assist rate in the nation.
Bilas has a top five of Oklahoma, Maryland, Villanova, North Carolina and Iowa. What a bizzare year of college basketball.
By Drew Franklin on ©February 10th, 2016 @ 10:30am
By Drew Franklin on ©February 10th, 2016 @ 10:00am
We may never top yesterday’s interview with Katina Powell, but the show must go on…
Join in on the fun by calling (502) 571-1080.
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On Delay (ALL TIMES LISTED EASTERN)…
WVHI (1330am): Evansville, IN, 5-7pm
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WRIL (106.3fm): Middlesboro, Thur 8-10pm
WWTF (1580am): Lexington, 4-6pm
By Drew Franklin on ©February 10th, 2016 @ 9:00am
Hello from lovely, freezing Boston, Massachusetts!
I’m up and at ’em after a long night of karaoke with two female Bernie Sanders campaigners I met in my hotel lobby, which was very random and bizarre. They kept me out past my bedtime but it was a fun night in downtown Beantown and I was able to sing Beyonce’s “Halo” to a crowd of uninterested people.
I watched the game at Tavern In The Square outside TD Garden — recommended to my friend by one Walter McCarty — and, honestly, didn’t pay a whole lot of attention because Kentucky was up by a million. But I did see what mattered; at least enough to stay on top of the news for today’s Morning Wakeup on KentuckySportsRadio.com.
So let’s do that, with more notes from Bahston.
People up here hate C-A-T-S cheers and obsess over Tom Brady.
I can confirm the Boston Bruins crowd isn’t a big Kentucky Wildcats crowd. The bar outside the Bruins game was packed with meatheads in hockey jerseys as I tried to watch UK, and they were not big fans of the three of us doing C-A-T-S cheers throughout the night.
It got even worse when one of us — we’ll call her Megan, because that’s her name — proceeded to lecture everyone on Deflategate and how Tom Brady and the Patriots are cheaters. To say I feared for my safety was an understatement, being the only guy in a group that was about to get pummeled for talking bad about their Lord and Savior, Tom Brady.
I guess it’s the same way we would defend Coach Cal if someone were to come to Lexington and curse his holy name.
Yesterday’s KSR was one for the ages. (Not all ages, though.)
You can’t unhear the words Katina Powell said to Matt Jones during yesterday’s interview on KSR. It’s now been almost 24 hours and I still can’t believe her comment about putting body fluids on the ceiling. If you missed it, scroll down (way down) to check out the audio, video, and Mrs. Tyler’s recap of the whole thing. It couldn’t have gone better.
We now know Alex Poythress will be out two weeks.
Though John Robic said he expected Alex Poythress to play against Georgia, Poythress sat out with the knee injury that kept him out of the Florida game. John Calipari told everyone afterward that his senior forward will be out for two weeks.
I was told on Monday that Poythress would miss 10-14 days, but I couldn’t go public with that information because UK wanted Georgia to plan on him playing. It’s a slight tear in his meniscus, not “a hemorrhoid,” as Calipari said last night.
Get better, AP.
Have we seen the end of Dancing Guy?
By now you’ve probably seen the video of Dancing Guy picking up a young girl and dropping her down the steps at last night’s game. It was a very scary situation and may cost us any further performances from one of Rupp Arena’s celebrity fans.
Here’s the video:
Luckily the girl is okay. That could’ve been really bad.
The Golden State Warriors are basketball porn.
I’m off to the Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame.
I’m going to tour the Hall today since I’m in this freezing, angry city with nothing to do. I will give a tour on SnapChat (drew_franklin) with some stuff on Twitter (@DrewFranklinKSR) so check it out if you’d like a look at what’s inside. A full recap of my findings will be on the site early next week.
KSR radio is up next. Tune in to that, although it won’t top yesterday’s second hour.
By Bryan the Intern on ©February 10th, 2016 @ 8:00am
There is a saying that is repeated often by radio talk show hosts and college basketball analysts that in the NCAA Tournament it is the guard position that matters the most. If you don’t have good guards you can’t win because those guys have the ball in their hands the most. If you are, let’s say Purdue, and your team is centered around big guys your chances are much smaller. Teams like UCONN in 2011 and 2014 rode hot guards to titles. But is this really the case year in and year out or are their just exceptional cases where guards have carried their teams.
Looking at each UK Final Four team since 1993, just who has led the team in scoring in the NCAA Tournament those years? Below are the Top 3 scorers in each NCAA Tournament in those FF runs:
1993 (5 games)
FORWARD, Jamal Mashburn: 97 points
GUARD, Travis Ford: 73 points
GUARD, Dale Brown: 63 points
1996 (6 games)
GUARD, Tony Delk: 113 points
FORWARD, Antoine Walker: 88 points
FORWARD, Walter McCarty: 67 points
1997 (6 games)
FORWARD, Ron Mercer: 98 points
GUARD, Wayne Turner: 76 points
GUARD, Cameron Mills: 71 points
1998 (6 games)
GUARD, Jeff Sheppard: 99 points
FORWARD, Scott Padgett: 82 points
CENTER, Nazr Mohammed: 80 points
2011 (5 games)
GUARD, Brandon Knight: 80 points
CENTER, Josh Harrellson: 65 points
FORWARD, Terrence Jones: 52 points
2012 (6 games)
GUARD, Doron Lamb: 99 points
CENTER, Anthony Davis: 82 points
GUARD, Marquis Teague: 80 points
2014 (6 games)
FORWARD, Julius Randle: 89 points
GUARD, James Young: 79 points
GUARD, Aaron Harrison: 79 points
2015 (5 games)
FORWARD, Karl Towns: 71 points
FORWARD, Trey Lyles: 53 points
GUARD, Andrew Harrison: 52 points
Now, a couple things to keep in mind. First, only 3 centers show up on the list, Nazr Mohammed, Josh Harrellson (barely a center) and Anthony Davis (only the best player in UK history). So what you can say is the CENTERS are generally minimized in the NCAA Tournament. Which is good for UK this year because our centers can’t score. We don’t really need Skal, Lee, and Humphries to score for the Cats to win. That’s good.
But, the idea that guards are the key really doesn’t seem to have much proof above. In the 8 Final Fours above you have 12 guards, 9 forwards, and 3 centers. Forwards have led the team in NCAA Tournament scoring in 3 of the 8 seasons, including the last 2. With that said, it’s hard to imagine anybody but Jamal Murray or Tyler Ulis would lead UK in scoring over a 5-6 game stretch, but these stats show that if Derrick Willis or Alex Poythress get hot in late March there is no reason to claim that is a bad thing. I think Murray and Ulis do need to play well for UK to succeed. That really doesn’t need to be discussed.
But do they HAVE TO lead the team in scoring? I’m not so sure.
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©February 10th, 2016 @ 12:19am
It’s happened time and time again this season: just when you get comfortable with Kentucky, they find a way to disappoint you. Not tonight. Kentucky built on an impressive performance against Florida with another big outing tonight, beating Georgia 82-48 on a rather weird night at Rupp Arena.
Simply put, the Cats were everything we knew they could be, shooting 52% from the floor while holding Georgia to a paltry 22%. Jamal Murray followed up his 35-point outing with another hot night, scoring 24 points, including six threes. Tyler Ulis and Derek Willis had good games, finishing with 14 and 11 points, respectively. The Cats were in cruise control for most of the game, and honestly, outside of a scoring drought near the end of the first half, there’s not a lot to complain about.
Regardless, I’m sure some of you will find something, so let’s break down the 34-point romp.
Jamal Murray had the hot hand again
Coming off a career-high 35 points vs. Florida, Murray was on fire again tonight, finishing with 24 points off 8-14 shooting from the floor and 6-10 from behind the arc. At times, when Jamal had the ball and time to set his feet, you knew it was going in. Calipari’s been on Murray to make the easy shots first and stop showboating, but old habits can be hard to break. At the end of the first half, Murray couldn’t help himself from trying to float a shot in from the baseline, drawing the ire of Cal in the postgame presser.
“Better. He’s getting better. He had the one baseline flip, he could not help himself. It’s like crack cocaine; I’ve gotta do this. And he flipped it under, had no chance of making it. But he’s getting better,” Cal said.
I’ll admit that Murray’s antics have annoyed me at times, but when he’s scoring 20+ and shooting like that, you can’t be too upset.
Derek Willis looked great
Willis had 11 points, 6 rebounds, 2 steals, and 1 block in 28 minutes, helping fill the void inside with Alex Poythress out. Willis reasserted himself in the post, showing some major confidence with this steal and slam:
“I’m really proud of him,” Calipari said of Derek after the game. “He’s rebounding the ball. He’s getting better defensively. Still not there. But this team believes in him and he believes in himself more.”
Here’s an interesting stat from UK Athletics’ Corey Price: Willis is the first Kentucky native UK player with six rebounds in seven consecutive SEC games since Winston Bennett in 1987-88. Derek made Bullitt County proud tonight, especially when he spent part of the postgame interviews praising Tyler Ulis.
“Without Tyler, we don’t have a team. Probably not a .500 team,” Willis said of Ulis, who finished with 14 points and 8 assists. “I don’t think he gets enough credit. Every game, he should be the talk.”
He’s right, and whenever Tyler leaves, we’re going to find out just how spoiled we were. Selfishly, I don’t want to worry about that for a while.
Charles Matthews put in some good minutes
It’s been a rough season for the freshman from Chicago, but he bounced back in impressive fashion tonight, scoring seven points and grabbing five rebounds in eleven minutes. Matthews, once a liability on both ends, made the most of his opportunity with Alex out.
“I thought Charles Matthews was outstanding today,” Cal said. “And it’s not because he made shots. It’s because he came up with balls and he blocked shots. He did some good stuff. Happy for him, too.”
An impressive performance on both ends
Tonight was a balanced affair. The Cats took care of business on offense, connecting on 52% of their shots from the floor, but for once, that wasn’t at the expense of defense. Kentucky limited Georgia to 48 points and 22% from the field, their best defensive performance of the season. The Bulldogs went 17:57 between field goals, missing a whopping 22 baskets.
“There were some bad shots in there,” Mark Fox said of his team’s 18-minute scoring drought. “There were some good shots in there. There were a couple great shots in there that just didn’t go down. It just snowballed on us and we could never recover.”
What’s the difference between the team that collapsed defensively at Tennessee and tonight’s steel curtain? Practice and poise.
“A lot of our issues defensively was because we had shifted to really work on our offense, because I thought our offense a month ago was just pitiful,” Cal said. “Now we’re back playing defense, and if you walked in our practice, you’re not seeing us play much offense. We’re really working on our team defense, the ability to fight through a possession, to finish off a possession, to scramble, to not only play your man, play one more, the stuff we normally teach here.”
Alex will be out two weeks
In case you missed Ryan’s scoop earlier, Alex Poythress reportedly underwent a minor procedure on his knee and will be out 10-14 days. Calipari didn’t divulge whether or not Alex had surgery, but did confirm the timetable for his return after the game, telling reporters Alex will be out “about two weeks.”
“It gives him a chance to come back on fire,” Calipari said. “It gives us a chance to get Isaac and these kids chances to play, maybe put Charles Matthews at the four. Our team is playing well, two of our better games. We’ll hold the fort down until Alex comes back. He’s a big part of what we’re doing. He’ll be fine.”
Was this Dancing Guy’s last dance at Rupp?
With Kentucky up big, another story stole the show in the second half. During his “Mony, Mony” routine, Dancing Guy picked up a young girl and slid down the railing, per usual, only to fall and drop the girl to the steps. Thankfully, both of them seem to be okay, but it was a scary, scary moment, and one that may signal the end of Dancing Guy’s ritual shimmy and shake for the cameras. The clip made “SportsCenter.” Will he return? Or, after his Katina Powell quote drop, will Ryan Lemond suddenly be free to replace him? Only time will tell.
For tonight, be happy the Cats won big. Get some rest, we’ve got a lot to talk about in the morning.
By Nick Roush on ©February 09th, 2016 @ 11:50pm
A crazy day was capped off with an ass-kicking in Rupp Arena. Matt Jones is hear to talk about the entertaining spectacle and enlighten fans with stirring rhetoric. But it won’t be the same without some wild calls, so join in on the fun on 840 WHAS or 630 WLAP.
By Nick Roush on ©February 09th, 2016 @ 11:35pm
Charles Matthews provided 16 quality minutes off the bench, scoring 7 points and grabbing 5 rebounds, three on the offensive end. Watching him sink a jump shot was startling, but it’s not what caught Calipari’s eye.
“I thought Charles Matthews was outstanding today, and it’s not because he made shots. It’s because he came up with balls and he blocked shots. He did some good stuff. I’m happy for him.”
Jamal Murray was spectacular shooting the ball, knocking down 6 of 10 threes and 8 of 14 shots. Calipari attributes it to better shot selection.
He’s cut out the silly off-balance shots and unorthodox finger-rolls, but one time he couldn’t resist. “It’s like crack cocaine, I gotta do this!” Calipari joked about his base-line runner that came up short. “He flipped it over, had no chance of making it, but he’s getting better.”
Cal added that he appreciates his defensive effort. “He’s trying, he’s getting better defensively. We’re scrambling better.”
Luckily the Cats did not have to scramble too much tonight to get the win.
By Nick Roush on ©February 09th, 2016 @ 11:17pm
By Nick Roush on ©February 09th, 2016 @ 11:00pm
The Cats cruised to an easy victory tonight behind a dominating defensive performance. Georgia went 17:57 without a field goal, missing 22 straight from the 13:37 mark in the first half, until after the first media timeout of the second half. The Bulldogs shot a measly 22% on the night.
On the offensive end, Derek Willis provided plenty of energy to add to Jamal Murray’s stellar shooting night. Murray continued showing his hot hand, scoring 24 points on 8-14 shots, 6 of 10 from behind the three-point line. Kentucky took care of the ball, committing only six turnovers on the night.
The last two games certainly make it easier to forget about last week’s hiccup.