Kentucky Sports Radio

University of Kentucky Basketball, Football, and Recruiting news brought to you in the most ridiculous manner possible.
December 18th, 2014

Patrick Towles supports the hire

© Kim Klement

© Kim Klement

At least one high profile member of Kentucky’s offense supports the hire of Shannon Dawson as the team’s new offensive coordinator. Patrick Towles, the early favorite to start under center again next season, voiced his support of Dawson on the Twitter device last night:

Backup QB Reese Phillips also sent out a tweet, saying, “Good stuff”:

Kentucky’s starting quarterback position will be up for grabs when football picks back up in the spring; Stoops said today that competition is good for the position.

Hey, Damien…


44.25 rushes per game versus 41 rushes per game…. I’m just sayin’.

Dawson’s post-Alabama game interview gives a small glimpse at his philosophy

This interview is following West Virginia’s season opening loss to Alabama and it gives you a little bit of an idea of how Dawson operates. He said, “We’re going to take advantage of what the defense presents. If that’s handing the ball, then we’re going to hand the damn ball. If they put more people in the box, then we’re probably going to throw it 90 percent of the time. A lot of time the defense dictates how much you run or how well you run.”

Also, he says ‘damn’ a lot. A whole lot.

Name To Watch: David Sills

This is nothing more than wishful thinking at this point (as far as we know) but there’s a name to keep an eye on now that Shannon Dawson is a Wildcat.

David Sills, a four-star quarterback out of Maryland, is currently committed to West Virginia and Dawson was one of Sills’ two lead recruiters on the Mountaineer staff. I have absolutely no idea if Sills has any interest in following Dawson to Kentucky, but it’s worth the conversation. Clearly Dawson’s offense and their relationship were a big part in landing the pro-style quarterback.

For what it’s worth, West Virginia isn’t the first school to receive a verbal commitment from Sills. You may remember him as the seventh grader Lane Kiffin offered and accepted at USC back in 2010.


Dawson also played a role in WVU landing three-star inside linebacker David Long. Long is from Winton Woods in Cincinnati, the same school that produced UK defensive back Mike Edwards.

Mark Stoops guest stars and tickets to UK-UCLA in Chicago (Thursday Show Thread)


Kentucky head football coach Mark Stoops will make his first public appearance of the offseason on today’s edition of Kentucky Sports Radio radio. Stoops will join Matt and Ryan in the second hour of this morning’s show to talk about his second season in Lexington and expectations moving forward. He might have a thing or two to say about his new offensive coordinator as well.

Plus someone is getting tickets to UK-UCLA in Chicago! Let’s go. LET’S GO. GET IN HERE.

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

Listen to Kentucky Sports Radio

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WRIL (106.3fm): Middlesboro, Thur 8-10pm



Good news, Cats fans!

We knocked off all shipping costs in The KSR Shop today and today only. Spend $30 or more on any merchandise and you’ll receive free shipping on the entire order.

Buy stocking stuffers, hats, shirts, accessories or any of our many UK products and the order will arrive at your front door without any additional costs. But it must be ordered today because the deal is gone tomorrow.

Get to it!


BTI’s Rants and Ramblings: Cats Not Doing Much Better From the Foul Line

Despite the fact that UK is undefeated, ranked #1, and has not played a game within 10 points, the Cats shooting woes, especially from the perimeter have been a hot topic on the radio show and message boards for several weeks now.  I am not sure it’s that big of a deal because the Cats do such a good job of offensive rebounding, but the shooting struggles have not just applied to the 3-point line.  Once again, UK is struggling to knock down free throws on a consistent basis.

You may remember that Cal’s history with free throw shooting used to be a common slam against him.  His teams were said to be undisciplined and have poor fundamentals.  The foul shots were key to losing a national title in 2008.  And then Calipari’s first team was poor from the line most of the year, doesn’t make the Final Four, and suddenly this becomes a defining characteristic of Calipari teams.  But then his 2nd and 3rd teams were very good from the line, both shooting over 70% on the season.  And it seemed that stereotype of Calipari teams disappeared, even though the ’13 and ’14 teams were not good from the line.

2009-10: 66.8%, 237th nationally

2010-11: 71.0%, 110th nationally

2011-12: 72.3%, 65th nationally

2012-13: 64.2%, 313th nationally

2013-14: 68.2%, 232nd nationally

2014-15: 66.3%, 233rd nationally

And now this year.  Once again, the Cats ranked outside the Top 200 in the nation in foul shooting.  Of the players who have attempted 20 or more free throws this year, only Karl Towns and Andrew Harrison are over 70%.  Dakari Johnson has improved his foul shooting this year, but still sits at just 57% despite the fact he has shot 29 more free throws than anybody else on the team.

Here is the truth of the situation: IT MIGHT NOT MATTER.  During a normal season, if a team is shooting foul shots like this UK team does, it will likely cost them 1-2 games.  But like any other wart you might want to find with this team, their strengths are so strong that it might not matter.  It does concern me a little that UK has yet to really shoot a pressure free throw under 2 minutes this year.  But hell, that might be the case all year.


KSR’s top 10 tweets of the day



It’s time again for KSR’s Top Tweets of the Day. We will focus most of our attention on Kentucky sports-centric tweets but, as usual, there are no limits to our madness. You can participate by using hashtags such as #BBN #KSR #KSRTop10 or just by simply tweeting @KYsportsradio.

#10 Doug Gottlieb

Yes! I really needed this excuse.





#9 Jess

What a smart kid you’re raising.





#8 Trey Lyles






#7 Bucky Small Hooves

I wonder what his and Kige Ramsey’s Snapchat relationship is.





#6 Dorian Hendrix

I like that attitude.





#5 Denny Goode

Uh…. close enough.





#4 Damien Harris

What did you learrrrn?





#3 BrianGEllis

That’s a perfect idea! Perfect place for their emails, too.





#2 Tod Lanter

Your poor classmates.





#1 doug smith

Seems legit. The Kentucky Department of Fish & Wildlife should look in to this.


December 17th, 2014

Shannon Dawson’s Wednesday Night Football News and Football Views


Kentucky has its new offensive coordinator! As you know by now, West Virginia’s Shannon Dawson will leave Morgantown for the same position in Lexington. He received and accepted the offer from Mark Stoops on Wednesday and it didn’t take long for word to leak out, because that’s life in 2014.

Dawson brings old school Air Raid from West Virginia to Kentucky and we’re told it will be even faster than the way Neal Brown intended to play while he was here. Dawson comes from the Hal Mumme coaching tree, so he knows a thing or two about chucking the pigskin. Look for his offense to push the tempo and throw the deep ball. “He will play FAST, FAST, FAST,” we’re told.

In three seasons as OC at West Virginia, where he or Dana Holgorsen called the plays, depending who you ask, the Mountaineers racked up impressive numbers through the air. This season, Dawson’s offense ranked ninth in passing offense, 11th in total offense and 38th in scoring offense, nationally.

Prior to West Virginia, Dawson coached the nation’s No. 1 passing offense and No. 4 scoring offense in his third and final year at Stephen F. Austin. When Dawson took over the Lumberjacks in 2008, they were coming off a winless season and 16 points per game. Dawson quickly turned things around, into the top passing offense in the Southland Conference and third-best in the country in his first season.

Kentucky fans won’t truly know if this is the right call until we see the product Dawson puts on the field next fall, but for now, it’s exciting to know Stoops likes his hire and will stick with the Air Raid offense.

More football news from the day…


The job was down to Dawson, Lincoln Riley, and one other candidate.

Riley was the name tossed around most from the start and was the presumed favorite throughout the process. He was my favorite candidate of the bunch, but only because I enjoyed this photoshop from Bucky Small Hooves, not because I thought he’d make the best fit.

Lincoln… Riley… Get it?

Dawson will coach West Virginia in the Liberty Bowl.

Kentucky football will have to wait two weeks until Dawson moves into his new office in Lexington. Dawson will stick with the Mountaineers through the team’s bowl game with Texas A&M in the 56th AutoZone Liberty Bowl in Memphis.

That game will kick off at 1:00 pm, Monday, December 29 on ESPN.

Damien Harris opened up about the current state of his recruitment.

The Courier-Journal’s Steve Jones tracked down Damien Harris at the Paul Hornung Award ceremony Wednesday to ask him how things stand coming off his official visit to UK. When asked if Kentucky and Alabama are his top two, Harris told Jones, “A little bit, but it’s not over. Any school can make any kind of run at you.”

Harris also said the departure of Neal Brown and Kentucky’s 0-6 finish have very little effect on his thoughts on UK. He is close to several coaches on the staff and understands it takes time to rebuild in the SEC.

Read the entire Q&A here. It’s good stuff.

Marcus Swain chose Auburn over Kentucky and Mississippi State.

The JUCO defensive tackle visited Kentucky last weekend but the Cats were never a favorite to land his services. Auburn was long believed to be the leader and it was Auburn getting the commitment in the end.

Kengera Daniel is officially a member of the Kentucky football program.

Daniel, a three-star defensive end from Raleigh, submitted his midyear paperwork to enroll at the University of Kentucky next semester and get to work with the football team. He tweeted this photo of the signing, below:

Daniel committed to UK in October.

George Asafo-Adjei also made it official.

Another UK football commit, offensive lineman George Asafo-Adjei, joined Daniel in making it official on Wednesday. Asafo-Adjei signed his paperwork at Lakota West High School in Ohio:

The three-star offensive tackle committed to Kentucky back in June and will join Lakota West grads Mikel Horton and Kyle Meadows at UK next month.

Sporting News named Boom Williams to its All-True Freshman team.

Kentucky’s freshman running back and leading rusher on the season earned a spot on Sporting News’ All-True Freshman team at kick returner. Boom’s acceptance tweet read, “Glad to be able to share this moment with my teammates coaches and family but the man above made it all possible.” Followed by, “Oh yeah and can’t forget about the whole BBN family!!”

Mark Stoops will be on Kentucky Sports Radio radio in the morning. You won’t want to miss it.

Plus the UK-UCLA ticket giveaway!

Check back on the site tomorrow for lots more Shannon Dawson talk, plus quotes from Calipari’s pre-UCLA press conference.

Go Cats.

Fun Shannon Dawson Facts!

Shannon Dawson will soon become Kentucky’s new offensive coordinator and he’s a guy who didn’t pop up on the public’s radar until this week. Therefore he’s unknown to many, if not all UK fans and followers out there.

But don’t you worry, Big Blue Nation. KSR has some interesting facts on Stoops’ new assistant:


— He’s from the Hal Mumme coaching tree, having spent two years under Mumme at Southeastern Louisiana followed by one season at New Mexico State.

— KSR has been told his offense is similar to Neal Brown’s but faster with more shots downfield. “He will play FAST, FAST, FAST,” said one person in the know.

— In 2010, serving as the offensive coordinator at Stephen F. Austin, he guided the nation’s No. 1 passing offense (362.2) and No. 4 scoring offense (36.3), ranking No. 6 in total offense (442.9).

— His first offensive coordinator job was at Millsaps College in Mississippi, where his offense averaged more than 35 points a game.

— He played quarterback and wide receiver at Wingate, where he led the team in receiving as a senior with 43 catches for 584 yards and seven touchdowns. He was second on the team as a junior with 31 catches for 410 yards and one touchdown. That same junior season, he completed 45 passes for 549 yards with seven interceptions and two touchdowns as a quarterback.

— He was named “Mr. Silliman Institute” in high school:

Shannon Dawson is the New Offensive Coordinator


We can now confirm that Shannon Dawson will be the new Offensive Coordinator at Kentucky. Dawson comes to us from West Virginia, where he was the leader of a high octane attack that was ranked 11th in the country. He however did not call plays there, which may be part of the reason that he has decided to make the move to Lexington (that and I would guess a raise). I spoke tonight to a source about Dawson’s offense and he told me that it would be “like Neal Brown’s only faster and with more shots downfield.” That is probably music to the ears of UK fans everywhere. Dawson has worked for a number of Air Raid coaches, including Hal Mumme and Dana Holgerson and certainly is known for a high octane offense.

I am told that the final choice came down to Dawson, Lincoln Riley and another candidate, with Dawson being picked because of the most compatible offensive philosophy with Mark Stoops. So there you go. More later and remember Stoops will join us on the air on KSR Radio tomorrow


Dawson to coach West Virginia in the Liberty Bowl

If we’re to believe, and we have no reason not to, Shannon Dawson will ride out his time with West Virginia through the Liberty Bowl before moving to Lexington as Mark Stoops’ new offensive coordinator. Dawson’s Mountaineers will meet Texas A&M in the 56th AutoZone Liberty Bowl on December 29, then he’s ours at the University of Kentucky.

Welcome aboard.

Shannon Dawson New UK Offensive Coordinator


Football Scoop is reporting that West Virginia Offensive Coordinator Shannon Dawson will leave Morgantown to take the same position at Kentucky. We will have more in the moments ahead.

A Look At UCLA’s 11 Games This Season

If you’re like me, you’ve got better things going on in life than watching UCLA basketball. I think we all have bigger priorities than tuning in to Bruins games out west, with the exception being a couple Battle 4 Atlantis games over Thanksgiving break. (Food coma = ESPN binge.)

But unlike me, you were probably too busy this afternoon to dissect UCLA’s 11 games this season for a post on What can I say? Wednesdays can be slow for me. I went to Fayette Mall for new socks and drove to Madisonville, too. BIG DAY.

So, below you’ll find a rundown of how UCLA has fared thus far through 2014-15.

(Spoiler: It’s not all that impressive.)


[W] UCLA 113, Montana State 78
Pauley Pavilion, Los Angeles, California

Somehow, some way, UCLA gave up 78 points to Montana State, the same team that managed to score only 22 points on Kentucky before the third platoon checked in with five minutes left. The Bobcats shot over 47 percent from the field against the Bruins with 10 players getting at least a bucket, including four players in double-figures.

However, UCLA still escaped with a 35-point win, led by 25 points from Norman Powell and another 20 from Kevin Looney in his college basketball debut. Powell and Looney were responsible for 23 of their team’s 26 made free throws.

I can’t fathom Montana State scoring 78 points on anyone.

[W] UCLA 84, Coastal Carolina 71
Pauley Pavilion, Los Angeles, California

UCLA found itself in a tight one with Coastal Carolina in the first half of the Bruins’ second game of the season, until UCLA pulled away in the second half with a 24-8 run.

Kevin Looney recorded his first career double-double with 17 points and 14 rebounds, while Bryce Alford, the coach’s son, added 17 of his own.

Coastal Carolina went on to beat Auburn at Auburn three weeks later.

[W] UCLA 107, Nicholls State 74
Pauley Pavilion, Los Angeles, California

Nicholls State, UCLA’s third opponent in six days, caught the Bruins on a hot shooting night from outside. UCLA went 11-for-21 from three-point land and eclipsed the 100-point mark for the second time in its first three games.

Baby Alford led all scorers with 28 points and a career-high 13 points. Kevin Looney added another double-double with 12 and 14.

[W] UCLA 77, Long Beach State 63
Pauley Pavilion, Los Angeles, California

Long Beach State gave UCLA its closest contest of the young season, trailing by only two possessions with three minutes to go. But UCLA buckled down and got the job done with an 11-2 run to close out the game.

All five UCLA starters scored in double-figures, led by 24 from Norman Powell. Kevin Looney added yet another double-double, his third in his first four games, with 10 points and 11 rebounds.

The Bruins scored only four points off the bench, all from guard Noah Allen.

[L] Oklahoma 75, (22) UCLA 65
Imperial Arena, Paradise Island, Bahamas

Now a Top 25 team, UCLA traveled to the Bahamas for the Battle 4 Atlantis, where it ran into Oklahoma in its first game in paradise. UCLA looked to be in good shape with a 57-49 lead in the second half, that is until Oklahoma’s Buddy Hield, a native of the Bahamas, went on a personal 10-0 run to give the Sooners the lead. Oklahoma went on to win, 75-62, with 24 points from Hield.

The Bruins shot 26-of-69 from the field, 4-of-17 from deep, and 9-of-21 at the foul stripe.

Looney recorded another double-double 16 points and 15 rebounds.

[L] (5) North Carolina 78, (22) UCLA 56
Imperial Arena, Paradise Island, Bahamas

UCLA dropped its second game in a row with a loss to fifth-ranked North Carolina (also coming off a loss) thanks to an ugly showing from the Bruins. Steve Alford’s team committed 23 turnovers to only seven assists and missed all but one of their 14 three-point field goal attempts.

Alford said afterward, “Our guard play wasn’t very good, our frontcourt wasn’t very good, and that’s not a very good combination.”

UCLA held a lead at 18-11, but that was as good as it would get for the Bruins in this one.

[W] (22) UCLA 88, UAB 76
Imperial Arena, Paradise Island, Bahamas

Still in the Top 25 and still in the Bahamas, UCLA drew UAB in the seventh-place game of the Battle 4 Atlantis, meaning the loser of this one would finish dead last at the event.

Things were going great for the Bruins with a 22-point lead with eight minutes left, then UAB made it interesting with a 17-5 run. Luckily for the Californians, they got it together late and held on to the lead for their only victory in the tournament.

Five Bruins scored in double-figures, powered by Isaac Hamilton’s 21 points on 8-for-13 shooting.

[W] UCLA 73, CS Fullerton 45
Pauley Pavilion, Los Angeles, California

After dropping two games in the Bahamas, UCLA returned home to Westwood to host nearby California State Fullerton and they returned to early season form with a blowout. The Bruins held Fullerton to 24 percent shooting and cruised to a 73-45 victory.

Once again, all five starters reached double-digit scoring and Kevin Looney filled up the box score with another double-double. Tony Parker was one rebound shy of joining Looney.

[W] UCLA 75, San Diego 68
Pauley Pavilion, Los Angeles, California

UCLA got off to a rough start against San Diego, trailing by two going into the break in Los Angeles. The Bruins were beat on the glass and on the scoreboard through the first 20 minutes, causing Steve Alford to lose his mind in the locker room.

UCLA would respond, however, taking over the lead and stretching it out to nine on two separate occasions. They went on to win by seven in the end, and yes, you guessed it, Kevin Looney had a double-double, his sixth through nine career games.

[W] UCLA 77, UC Riverside 66
Pauley Pavilion, Los Angeles, California

UCLA came out sluggish once again against UC Riverside, trailing at the half in a second game in a row, this time by eight. But Normal Powell sparked a Bruin rally in the second half with seven straight points and UCLA went on to win by 11.

Tony Parker had a career-high 16 points and a career-high 16 rebounds. Looney added a double-double of his own for his Pac-12-leading seventh of the year.

[L] (9) Gonzaga 87, UCLA 74
Pauley Pavilion, Los Angeles, California

A familiar face lit UCLA up for 24 points in Gonzaga’s 13-point win on UCLA’s home floor last weekend. Kyle Wiltjer was 9-of-13 from the field and 3-of-5 from outside en route to those 24 points, followed by another 20 from his Bulldog teammate Byron Wesley.

The loss was UCLA’s third on the season, snapping a four-game winning streak and an undefeated record at home. It was never close.

[?] (1) Kentucky __ , UCLA __
United Center, Chicago, Illinois

Good luck!


Mark Stoops will be a guest on KSR tomorrow


Here’s your friendly reminder: Mark Stoops will be a guest on Kentucky Sports Radio radio tomorrow morning. UK’s head football coach is scheduled to join the guys in studio in the second hour, beginning around 11:05 am.

If listening to Stoops isn’t your thing, you should still considering tuning in if you have any interest in going to Chicago. Matt and Ryan also plan to give away tickets to Kentucky’s Saturday game with UCLA.

It’s going to be a goodin’.