Earlier this week, a KSR caller gave us a great research topic: the recruits that →
By Drew Franklin on ©April 25th, 2017 @ 9:55am
It’s an action-packed day on KSR as the guys weigh in on the latest recruiting news and more on Bam Adebayo’s decision. They’ll also discuss Commonwealth Stadium naming rights and release the bracket for Thursday’s Movie Tournament.
Join in on the fun by calling (502) 571-1080.
By Drew Franklin on ©April 25th, 2017 @ 9:00am
Monday was full of news and most of it involves the makeup of next year’s basketball roster. Let’s rehash on all the latest shake-ups in recruiting and NBA decisions, as well as what lies ahead this week.
(But first say hello to our friends in front of the Pacaya volcano in Guatemala.)
1. Bam Adebayo hired an agent. #HeGone
As expected all along, Bam Adebayo is yet another one-and-done player at the University of Kentucky. It took a little longer for Adebayo to officially make the jump, but he has now hired an agent and forfeited his amateur status to remain in the draft and pursue his NBA career. Adebayo was in his hometown in North Carolina over the weekend and I assume that is when the decision was finally made. Now he gone, as the saying goes. Good luck to him.
2. Mark Smith will announce his decision tomorrow.
Looking forward to next year, we will hear from one of the four remaining targets on John Calipari’s big board tomorrow. Mark Smith, the first of the three potential backcourt additions that were added to the radar this month, is all set to announce his decision on Wednesday. Illinois’ Mr. Basketball canceled plans to visit Kentucky after seeing a pair of Big Ten schools over the weekend, so things aren’t looking too positive for the Wildcats. That is okay, though, as Calipari already has Jemarl Baker and his eyes set on Cameron Johnson. Speaking of Johnson…
3. Cameron Johnson will take a visit to Kentucky tomorrow.
Johnson will be on campus Wednesday and Thursday for an official visit to Kentucky. The grad transfer from Pittsburgh will have two years of eligibility (so long as he graduates this spring) and UK is considered to be the leader for his next college basketball home. The trip to Lexington will be Johnson’s first official visit to any school since declaring his departure from Pitt. He is also considering Arizona, Ohio State, Oregon, UCLA and TCU.
4. Jemarl Baker is on campus right now.
We continue the basketball recruiting theme with a reminder that Jemarl Baker has been on campus since Sunday. The latest commit to the 2017 class, Baker will travel back to California sometime today and then return to Lexington this summer to begin his college basketball career as a Wildcat.
5. Jarren Williams re-opened his recruitment.
And now for some football recruiting news… Mark Stoops’ class took a big blow yesterday with word that Jarren Williams will re-open his recruitment following a long list of elite scholarship offers this spring. The dual-threat quarterback out of Georgia became Kentucky’s first member of its 2018 class when he committed last summer; now he has offers from teams all over the SEC, including a brand new one from that quarterback-stealing program in Tuscaloosa. This makes two QBs ripped out of Kentucky’s arms in two years.
6. The CATSPYs were all the craze last night.
Former co-workers Kaylee Hartung and Sean Farnham were in Lexington last night to host the CATSPY Awards, UK’s annual celebration of its athletic achievements. Among the notable winners were Malik Monk, Male Rookie of the Year; Dominique Hawkins, Supporting Role; Men’s Basketball, Team of the Year; and Jon Toth, Mr. Wildcat.
You can see a full list of the winners here.
7. Watch Marlana VanHoose sing “Don’t Stop Believing.”
Mariana VanHoose+Journey= Awesome pic.twitter.com/oq0qNVj3V1
— Clayton Abernathy (@ClaySTV1) April 25, 2017
8. Have you sent a scathing tweet to Hamidou Diallo today?
If you have, delete your account. If you haven’t, don’t.
Some of y’all are going to mess around and run him off for good.
9. This guy thinks Missouri is out of the picture for Kevin Knox.
Hearing from multiple sources #Mizzou won’t be the choice for Kevin Knox. Tigers made strong late effort, but that leaves NC, Duke, UK, FSU
— Gabe DeArmond (@GabeDeArmond) April 24, 2017
If true, it’s back to the original four of Duke, UNC, Florida State and Kentucky for Knox. My prediction is still one of the ACC schools, especially if Calipari can convince Cam Johnson to commit on campus this week.
10. KSR radio show in an hour…
By Matt Jones on ©April 24th, 2017 @ 11:37pm
OK it is that time of year again…as we head into the Dog Days of Summer, thoughts turn to topics that don’t solely include UK Sports. And with that in mind, the radio show begins the summer Bracket chatter with our first ever attempt to pick the KSR Radio Best Movie Bracket Contest. Now we have thought about undergoing such an endeavor in the past, but a number of things have gotten in the way, most importantly the fact that not everyone has seen every movie. So with that in mind, I tried to limit the scope to pick the KSR Best Movie under these criteria:
1. All Movies Since 1980
Look I know people love Casablanca, On the Waterfront, Citizen Kane and a host of other movies from another generation. That is nice. And it is very likely that the 1970s produced the best decade of movies of all-time. But I am looking for a contest that virtually everyone can participate in…the 1980s seemed like a good starting point.
2. Movie Must Be Well-Known and Watched by Many
I am in no way going to try and argue that these are the BEST movies since 1980. There have undoubtedly been many that have higher quality than most on this list and I could do a complete different bracket with just the movies that I prefer. But I wanted to pick movies tha most everyone has seen, and thus this list seems to work best.
3. No Comedies Are on the List
I realized as I began that comedies are hard to compare to other movies…how is “Billy Madison” like “Schindler’s List?” It isn’t. So we will do those in another bracket at another time. Where a movie could have a couple of labels (like “Lost in Translation”), I went with what I thought was the best description.
So the 64 movies below are what I have come up with…there are very few superhero movies because I haven’t seen many of them and am not really into them (sorry). Movies with many sequels, even the good ones, are combined into one listing. The 64 below make up my first stab at the list…the radio show tomorrow will give people a chance to replace one movie off the list with another one if they can make a good case for it. My guess is a few will be able to, so once that is finished, we will have the final list to put into a bracket for the shows on Thursday and Friday. The list below is not in any order beyond decades and wont be the four brackets. Let the movie watching begin:
Back to the Future
Do the Right Thing
Full Metal Jacket
Blair Witch Project
Boyz N the Hood
Good Will Hunting
Saving Private Ryan
Lord of the Rings
There Will be Blood
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
Lost in Translation
No Country for Old Men
Gangs of New York
Walk the Line
Field of Dreams
Silence of the Lambs
Zero Dark Thirty
Wolf of Wall Street
By Drew Franklin on ©April 24th, 2017 @ 11:00pm
Bam Adebayo is gone.
Kentucky’s lovable big man reportedly hired an agent after initially leaving open the option to return when he declared for the draft two weeks ago. The hiring of the agent ends his amateur status and college eligibility, thus ending his time as a Kentucky Wildcat. Your hopes and prayers for a sophomore season went unanswered.
In my opinion the move was the right one, although others will say different. That’s a conversation we can have some other time. For now let’s just look back on Adebayo’s one season in Lexington as he looks ahead to the next phase of his basketball life.
Bam Adebayo made a special guest appearance on Mike & Mike in November of his senior season to announce his college decision.
That decision was, of course, to attend the University of Kentucky:
Adebayo chose Kentucky over North Carolina and Auburn, as well as interest and offers from many other schools.
The fifth-ranked player in his class, Adebayo cited John Calipari’s ability to get players to the next level as one of the main reasons he picked the Cats.
That Story About The Coffee Table
It wouldn’t be a tribute to Bam Adebayo without regurgitating the story of how he became Bam in the first place. As legend has it, Adebayo picked up the family coffee table while watching The Flintstones with his mother when he was only one year old. The nickname was born from there and the story was told way too many times throughout this past season.
The Dwight Howard Comparisons
Though he absolutely hated it, Adebayo was often compared to Dwight Howard when he first got to campus. However, we quickly learned to never, ever, ever compare him to Dwight Howard to his face, unless you had a death wish.
The good people over at KSTV had some preseason fun with Adebayo’s teammates and the uncanny resemblance:
I guess being compared to Dwight Howard isn’t a good thing these days, at least not as good as it was 10 years ago.
The Preseason Hype/Early NBA Projections
Adebayo was the fifth overall pick to the Los Angeles Lakers in CBSSports.com’s first NBA mock draft for the 2017 draft, while Chad Ford over at ESPN.com projected Adebayo would go 12th overall, still in the lottery.
“Bam Adebayo already has the NBA body and athleticism that teams crave in their power forwards,” Ford wrote last fall. “He’s an explosive athlete who plays with a great motor. He’s going to be a rebounding and shot-blocking machine for Kentucky.”
Meanwhile, college basketball media types (us included) threw around that “beast” word to describe what we expected to see out of the freshman.
John Calipari also called him a beast when he said, “We have to buy a couple more backboards down at Rupp, because we only have three and I’m afraid if he breaks one or breaks two … like, this kid, he’s a beast.”
Calipari even hinted at the possibility of Adebayo developing at the rate of Karl-Anthony Towns or Anthony Davis by the end of his first season.
The Underwhelming Start
It was obvious out of the gate that Adebayo would need some time to find his footing in college basketball. The look test he passed with flying colors over the summer didn’t translate to the college game right away. Sure, he bullied some of the inferior competition on Kentucky’s early schedule, but Adebayo struggled when he ran into players who would push back. Foul trouble was also an early criticism and focal point for the coaching staff.
Above all, Adebayo’s rebounding was the most underwhelming aspect of his game. Once predicted to be a double-double machine for the Wildcats, the big man had only three double-doubles in his first 27 games in college, and scoring was never the problem.
The Dunks (Bam Slams)
There was no shortage of dunks (or Bam Slams) from Adebayo in his one season at Kentucky. He set a new record for the Calipari era with 101 dunks on the year, surpassing Anthony Davis’ record of 92 dunks in the 2011-12 season.
Here is one of the those 101 dunks:
And here is another:
The Late Emergence
While the double-doubles were hard to come by through the first four months of the season, Adebayo had no problem getting them by the end. Once that switch flipped and the light came on in mid-SEC play, Adebayo closed the season with an average of 14.3 points and 10.2 rebounds in the nine games leading into the NCAA tournament. The late emergence led Matt Norlander to write a piece titled “Why Kentucky’s NCAA Tournament prospects rest on Bam Adebayo’s shoulders” and predict Adebayo would become a breakout star in March.
The NCAA Tournament
Adebayo went on to score 28 points and grab 28 rebounds in Kentucky’s first two games in the tournament. The second of those games, against Wichita State, came with some extra motivation thanks to Wichita’s Darral Willis Jr. saying he would shut Adebayo down.
Bam’s mom was pretty excited about Kentucky’s win and her son’s double-double response to Willis Jr.’s comment:
Bam Adebayo’s mother, Marilyn Blount, after UK’s victory over Wichita State. “He didn’t shut (Bam) down, did he?! Bam went at him!” pic.twitter.com/uRkR8B1vhD
— Tanner Hesterberg (@TannerWKYT) March 19, 2017
Back on April 5, Adebayo said goodbye to Big Blue Nation:
“This process we went through at Kentucky was a tough but a rewarding one,” Adebayo said. “It was everything I wanted when I decided to come to Kentucky. It taught me a lot. It taught me how to be a better man on and off the court. I have improved so much since the beginning of the season thanks to the hard work of the coaching staff. They helped me with every step of the process along the way and they never gave up on me.
“I want to thank my teammates. I couldn’t have asked for a better group to grow with. We were all like brothers. I also want to thank the fans for their support and everything they do for us. Their passion is like nothing I’ve ever seen before.
“I feel I’m making the right step in declaring for the draft, but I want to be absolutely sure that I’m making the right decision for me and my mom. I’m looking forward to the process and I appreciate the support of the coaches, my teammates and the fans. No matter what happens, it’s been an unbelievable ride.”
An unbelievable ride indeed.
The one and only Big Mick is a meaty masterpiece in its
own right. Composed of two quarter-pound patties* of never-fresh, frozen,
mostly beef raised close to the processing plant. Only McDowell’s
has the frosted beef and processed cheese to give you a major reason for
the afternoon trip to the secret bathroom only you and Debra know about on the 9th floor that is under construction.
You can be a part of McDowell’s KSR Top 10 Tweets by using hashtags like #KSR #BBN or #KSRtop10. You can also nominate tweets by mentioning them with the hashtag. If we like what we see, it could be posted the next day.
If you are interested in sponsoring KSR’s Top 10 Tweets, please contact us at Via Email
Now. On to the tweets:
#10 Billie Larry Forston
— Billie Larry Forston (@BillieLarryFors) April 24, 2017
How original, guys.
#9 TJ Flynn
— TJ Flynn (@tjfly) April 25, 2017
This dude don’t know anything.
#8 Terry Jordan
— Terry Jordon (@tnjordon) April 24, 2017
— CMD_77 (@CMD_77) April 24, 2017
Same, dude, same.
#6 John Robic’s Hair
— John Robic’s Hair (@JohnRobicsHair) April 24, 2017
I’m just amazed.
#5 Trey Minton
— Trey Minton (@tr3yuk) April 24, 2017
It’s a travesty.
— nickwitt (@nickwitt) April 24, 2017
#3 Kentucky Glen
— Kentucky Glenn (@lil_donnie_t) April 24, 2017
#2 King Lex Chapman
— King Lex Chapman (@KingLexChapman) April 22, 2017
I mean, it was a pretty solid joke.
#1 Tony Ray
@KySportsRadio So the rumor KSR Commonwealth Stadium is false?
— Tony Ray (@TDKYRay) April 24, 2017
KSR Commonwealth Stadium, where listening to the officials is optional.
By Nick Roush on ©April 24th, 2017 @ 10:15pm
A few takeaways:
— Do we need four coaches to receive awards? Coach Cal has won enough while at Kentucky. I don’t think he’d feel slighted if a year went by and he didn’t get the hardware from the athletic department.
— Benny Snell got snubbed. I love watching Malik Monk play basketball, but pardon me for being more excited about Benny Snell. We see freshman phenoms on the basketball court ALL THE TIME. What Snell did last season has only been done by a few UK football players, let alone a freshman. Which brings me to my next point…
— The basketball team doesn’t need any more awards. They’re treated like award-winners before they reach campus. They reach rockstar-status as soon as they get to campus, then receive more awards. I think they’re good on awards. Let the CATSPYs go to the rest of the hard-working athletes, not the ones that get all of the BBN’s love.
— Three Perfect Awards. Makayla Epps and Evelyn Akhator received the “Heart of a Wildcat” to perfectly encapsulate their Kentucky careers. The Blue Heart Award is given to those who persevere through injury, and there isn’t a better example than Alex Montgomery. Mr. Wildcat Jon Toth is everything you want in a student-athlete and tonight he earned his unwanted time in the spotlight.
By Nick Roush on ©April 24th, 2017 @ 10:00pm
The stars of UK Athletics packed Memorial Coliseum for a night to honor athletic achievement in the 2016-17 school year. Dressed to the nines, nobody cleaned up quite like Matthew Mitchell’s squad.
That doesn’t mean the nastiest dudes in the building, the Kentucky football team, can’t look good too. This slick suit on Kash Daniel is much different than the typical camouflage and American flag attire.
Derek Willis needed a larger podium
The 15th anniversary of the CATSPYs was hosted by former SEC/ESPN colleagues Kaylee Hartung and Sean Farnham.
By Nick Roush on ©April 24th, 2017 @ 9:11pm
Pittsburgh graduate transfer shooting guard Cameron Johnson will take a visit to Lexington this Wednesday and Thursday, according to Evan Daniels and Jeff Goodman.
A graduate transfer, Johnson will be eligible to play immediately. Unlike most grad transfers, he has two years of eligibility remaining. Last year Johnson averaged 11.9 points on 41.5 percent shooting from behind the three-point line (44.7 overall), adding 4.5 rebounds and 2.3 assists in about 33 minutes per game.
Also considering Ohio State, Oregon, USC, Arizona and TCU, the “Johnson to Kentucky” buzz has been generally positive over the last week. A great visit this week could put the Cats over the top.
By Nick Roush on ©April 24th, 2017 @ 8:45pm
The viral sensation Bad Lip-Reading made an appearance at this year’s CASPYs, and featured a variety of your favorite personalities in the UK Athletic Department.
Lamar Thomas gets things started, followed by appearances from John Calipari, Kash Daniel, Matthew Mitchell, De’Aaron Fox and many more. The best is saved for last: a special “performance” from Mitch Barnhart.
By Nick Roush on ©April 24th, 2017 @ 8:30pm
You might have seen it on a TV or a movie, but do you know what a roller derby is? Probably not, that’s why Hey Kentucky! sent new correspondent Rebecca Sanders to watch the Rollergirls of Central Kentucky practice. Rebecca asks the tough questions — How does it work? Can you use weapons? What are some awesome roller derby names? — and manages to stay on her feet (most of the time).
Watch all of Monday’s episode after the jump:
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©April 24th, 2017 @ 6:30pm
After reports that Bam Adebayo is staying in the draft and Hamidou Diallo is considering it, it’s clearer than ever that next year’s team is going to be YOUNG. The biggest “veteran” coming back is Wenyen Gabriel, who averaged 4.6 points in 17.8 minutes this past season. Still, having a young team is no new task for John Calipari, and while a lot of fans are frustrated at the thought of another blank slate, CBS Sports’ Gary Parrish is here to remind you that history shows that Kentucky will probably be fine.
Calipari’s four teams that have relied on freshmen to score more than 60.0 percent of their points were the 2011, 2013, 2014 and 2017 teams — and three of those freshmen-heavy teams (2011, 2013, 2014) lost six SEC games, which isn’t good. But let the record show that three of those four teams (2011, 2014, 2017) still made the Elite Eight. And two of those four teams (2011, 2014) still advanced to the Final Four.
My point: Even when UK’s young teams “struggle” they tend to finish impressively.
So, another roller coaster season, which means we need that talent to be really elite. Looking at you, Bamba!
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©April 24th, 2017 @ 5:30pm
It’s been quite a Monday for UK Sports, but you know what usually makes everything better? Listening to Karl Towns talk. Thankfully, we’ve got a great opportunity to do just that thanks to Karl’s appearance on The Vertical Podcast with Adrian Wojnarowski. Karl opens up about his entire career, from interviewing Kevin Durant in high school to playing for the Dominican Republic National Team under John Calipari, his year at Kentucky, and now, his remarkable first two years in the NBA. It’s chock full of “Oh, Karl” moments, such as this wonderful reflection on playing for his father growing up.
“I look back at my career and that’s probably the best time, when you’re able to have quality time with your father. Again, I’m more blessed, not for the talents I have in basketball, not for the success I’ve found in the game, but more for the time I’ve had with two loving parents being together for so long.”
And we’re not even to the UK stuff yet…
It just got better when Karl Towns explained his decision to play for the Dominican Republic National Team knowing it meant he could never play for Team USA, a sacrifice he says he made to make his mother proud.
“I knew what I had done when I made that decision. I had all the facts before. There’s no better way than to honor your mother, the person that’s given you life than by playing for her. Every time I go out on the court wearing a Dominican Republic jersey, I know that I’m doing everything I can to make my mother proud. It’s one of those things I understood and wanted to go with regardless of the repercussions it had later in life.”
Of course, playing for the DR National Team also meant playing for its new coach, John Calipari, which Karl claims was a pure coincidence. Karl couldn’t mention Cal and Kentucky without mentioning the loss to Wisconsin in the 2015 Final Four, which he says he will carry with him for the rest of his career.
“We had a chance to really solidify ourselves. Now we have that ‘What if?’ next to our name. ‘They had the talent, they were the best team ever assembled in basketball history, but what if they would have won, would we really have crowned them that?’ Now it’s like a discussion. We never wanted a discussion. We wanted to go out and win. It’s one of those things you remember for the rest of your life. I’ve never let it go. I never will. I will take that as the biggest defeat of my life. I lost the chance to go to the Olympics. I’ve lost the TOC Championship in New Jersey, I’ve lost a lot of games in my life but that definitely will always hold up as the pinnacle and it’s something that you just never want to deal with again.”
“We understood after the game that it wasn’t more of being sad or crying or anything. It was a shock realizing one, the season is over and two, coming to the realization that we’ll never be in the same locker room ever again. And it hurt us. It hurt us, not even from an emotional crying standpoint, but more just mentally understanding that you won’t be looking across the locker room and seeing a Willie Cauley-Stein or a Devin Booker or Tyler Ulis. This is it.”
Dang it, Karl. This was supposed to make me feel better.
Great news! Hey Kentucky! is looking for summer interns. If you think you’ve got what it takes, send an email with your contact information to HeyKentucky@lex18.com or visit HeyKentucky.com for more information.
By Mrs. Tyler Thompson on ©April 24th, 2017 @ 4:22pm
More breaking news! According to Scout.com, four-star shooting guard Mark Smith will announce his college decision Wednesday at 7 p.m. ET at his high school in Illinois. Smith is one of three shooting guards John Calipari has been pursuing to bulk up depth in the 2017 class; another, Jemarl Baker committed to Kentucky a few weeks back; the third, Pitt transfer Cam Johnson, has Kentucky in his final list, but has yet to announce a timetable.
Smith has picked up a lot of interest from major programs in recent weeks, but given Baker’s commitment and the fact that Smith decided not to visit Kentucky this weekend after trips to Illinois and Ohio State, I’m going to guess that he’ll elect to stay in the Big 10. Thankfully, we’ll know for sure Wednesday evening as the dominoes continue to fall for the 2017 class.
Meanwhile, Baker is currently on campus enjoying his official visit to his future school. His SnapChat story suggests he’s having a great time.