Kentucky Sports Radio

University of Kentucky Basketball, Football, and Recruiting news brought to you in the most ridiculous manner possible.
August 15th, 2017

Marlana Vanhoose To Sing ‘Total Eclipse Of The Heart’ At Kroger Field During Solar Eclipse Monday

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

Kroger Field has announced an event this coming Monday that will allow fans a chance to experience the newly renamed football facility before the season kicks off. Tailgaters will be allowed in the parking lot early and will be able to purchase special parking passes and any regular season ticket holders will receive a free pair of eclipse glasses provided they make a sizable donation to the K fund.

Fans will be able to take their seats by 1pm when the pre-game show will begin when former UK quarterback Freddie Maggard will begin breaking down film of previous matchups between the sun and moon for all of the fans in attendance.

The eclipse is expected to peak at roughly 2:29 in Lexington, the real treat for fans will be Kentucky’s own Marlana Vanhoose singing a stirring rendition of Total Eclipse Of The Heart as the moon slowly passes in front of the sun.

To learn more about what to expect during this eclipse local eclipse enthusiast Rob Bromley weighed in. “I was there for the last one in 1935, that was probably the best one, the 1918 one was nothing to write home about,” began Bromley. “The Sun dominated all day, but this Sun and Moon matchup will be closer than the experts think. I like the Sun to win but the Moon to cover.” Bromley added that he plans to attend this year’s Eclipse viewing and will enjoy hearing Vanhoose sing saying, “I can’t wait for this year’s show. I got thrown out when they did this back in the 30’s over at Stoll Field because I kept spicing up that boring song with some F-bombs here and there.”

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


Matt goes in depth on the protest violence on “Hey Kentucky!”

Earlier today, a white supremacist group announced plans to hold a rally in Lexington to protest the city’s planned removal of two Confederate statues from downtown. What would that mean for the city of Lexington? Matt went in-depth on the topic in a passionate editorial on today’s “Hey Kentucky!”:

Full episode after the jump:

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The Dog Days of Training Camp with The KSR Football Podcast

There’s only two Saturdays left without Kentucky football, but it feels even longer.  Fight through your late-summer football-less blues with the KSR Football Podcast.  The gang ponders a new name (with the finalists polled at a later date) and discussed all of the camp storylines like…

—  Cole Mosier’s injury and why John Schlarman’s offensive line is built to take attrition.

—  Good things that happened at UK’s first scrimmage.

—  Why is Drew naked on the wall at 21C?

—  Is it good or bad to script plays ahead of time?

—  Joker Phillips’ frivolous statement about his time at Kentucky.

—  Jared’s unforgettable “Remember the Titans” experience.

You can easily listen on the KSR App, available on iTunes and Google Play.  Streaming online is simple through Pod Paradise.  You can also get it directly to your phone by subscribing to “Kentucky Sports Radio” on iTunes or via Android’s Podcast Addict app.


Diallo, Richards working out with NBA stars during summer break (UPDATED)

John Calipari’s Wildcats are supposed to be on summer break right now, but it has been anything but that for Hamidou Diallo and Nick Richards. If anything, they’re working harder against better competition while back home in the New York area.

How is that possible, you ask?

Well, according to several video clips from Chris Brickley, a popular NBA trainer, Diallo and Richards have been working out with some very familiar names, including Carmelo Anthony and Enes Kanter.

Brickley was recently featured in Business Insider for his work with Anthony, Kevin Durant and other NBA superstars, so it’s nice to see him teaching and training the two young Wildcats while they are home for the summer break.

Have a look:

A post shared by Chris Brickley (@cbrickley603) on

A post shared by Chris Brickley (@cbrickley603) on

A post shared by Chris Brickley (@cbrickley603) on

Brickley said Diallo told him he wants to win a national championship and be one of the best players in college basketball next season.

This summer work is certainly a great start in that direction.

UPDATE

LeBron James and Kevin Durant have joined the party this week. Richards can be seen trying to guard them in the new clip from today:

A post shared by Chris Brickley (@cbrickley603) on

How about that for offseason competition before beginning his college career?


Kyle Wiltjer signs with the Raptors

Looks like that Goonies reunion with Willie Cauley-Stein brought Kyle Wiltjer some good luck. Wiltjer signed a one-year deal with the Toronto Raptors today, and will compete for a final roster spot at training camp in September.

Last year, Wiltjer signed with the Houston Rockets as an undrafted rookie and spent most of his time in the D-League with the Rio Grande Valley Vipers, averaging 20.5 points (including 37.9% shooting) and 6.4 rebounds per game. He and fellow former Cat DeAndre Liggins were sent to the Los Angeles Clippers in the Chris Paul deal, but the Clippers parted ways with Wiltjer last month. Now, he’ll battle Kennedy Meeks and Alfonzo McKinnie for one of the final two roster spots at the Raptors’ training camp.

Good luck, Kyle. Hopefully you and Willie can team up for a Goonies Christmas Special when the Sacramento Kings host the Raptors in December.

The Goonies are back! Willie Cauley-Stein & Kyle Wiltjer take over Hong Kong

 


Gran Encouraged by Offense’s Response after Scrimmage

After Saturday’s scrimmage, the Kentucky football coaches had mixed opinions on how the team performed.  After yesterday’s practice, Eddie Gran was decisively pleased with his offense.

During the live scrimmage, the offense started drives well, but struggled once they got inside the red zone.  That was not the case when they returned to the field on Monday.

“What I did like is we came out yesterday and had a really good day in the red zone,” said Gran.  “They responded and we were more efficient on first-down run and third down.  We were really good.”

The scrimmages are never as good, or as bad as the coaches initially think once they get to the film.  What he wants to see on film after each practice is a team that has learned from their previous practice’s mistakes.

“How are you going to respond after the things we didn’t (do)?  We’ve just got to continue to get better.  We’ll go on there and look today and whatever we didn’t get better at, that will be the emphasis tomorrow.  If they can continue to grow that way, we’ll have a chance.  I talk about consistency, and that’s what I want to see out of this group is being consistent.”

Today the team conditioned after practice.  I guess that means tomorrow conditioning will be the practice’s emphasis.


Is that Benny Snell Jr. or Odell Beckham Jr.?

Benny Snell Jr. made a one-handed catch in Monday’s practice that had him looking more like Odell Beckham Jr.

See for yourself:

Snell will need his hands, both of them, to catch more passes out of the backfield this season, and this is a good sign that he is capable of doing so. He said on Media Day he anticipates seeing a lot more thrown his way after catching only two passes last season as the power-back behind starter Boom Williams.


Why Marvin Bagley going to Duke is a good thing for Kentucky

By now, you’ve heard that Marvin Bagley, heralded by some as a “once in a generation” type recruit, is headed to Duke, which makes the Blue Devils the definitive No. 1 team in the country heading into the season. Here’s why that’s a great thing for Kentucky.

Last year, the national media penciled Duke in as the national champions before the season even began, hyping the Blue Devils as the perfect mix of talent and experience. As we all know, that wasn’t the case. Injuries and chemistry problems plagued Duke all season, and even though the Blue Devils rallied to win the ACC, they lost to South Carolina in the second round of the NCAA Tournament, making the season undeniably a disappointment. There were a lot of factors to Duke’s failure to launch — Grayson Allen sure was a distraction — but it didn’t help that every single struggle was nitpicked by the national media. Because of the preseason hype, Duke was squarely in the spotlight, and clearly did not fare well because of it; with the number one player in the 2018 class reclassifying to join the Blue Devils this fall, that will be the case once again. After Bagley’s announcement, Duke’s odds of winning the 2018 title jumped from 7-1 to 3-1, making them the second largest preseason favorite in the last ten seasons behind the 2014-15 Kentucky team. For the second straight season, college basketball’s crosshairs will be on Durham.

If there was ever a season for Kentucky to dodge the spotlight, this would be it. As John Calipari has said time and time again (and will ad nauseam until the season starts), this is his youngest team ever. While several players gained experience during international play this summer, the only returning player who averaged more than seven minutes per game is Wenyen Gabriel. Wenyen averaged 4.6 points last year, making this Calipari’s first team at Kentucky without a returning player who averaged 5.0 points or more in the previous season.

The freshmen are talented, yes, but they are still freshmen, and this team will take some lumps. Last year’s team — also young — was able to go through its growing pains while the rest of the nation focused on Duke. As a result, when the tournament rolled around, the Cats hit their stride. Thanks to Marvin Bagley, Kentucky will have that luxury once again.


Landon Young is Prepared to Replace Mosier after Invaluable Experience as a True Freshman

Jeff Houchin Photography

Landon Young is in familiar territory.

Last year in just his second game as a Wildcat, he was thrown into the action in Gainesville after Cole Mosier went down with a minor injury.  Eddie Gran said it’s invaluable experience, “You can’t put that in words.”  However, Young was able to eloquently describe what it was like when he was forced into action as a true freshman.

It was like I was getting dipped in gas and then thrown into a fire,” Young said after today’s practice.  “It was a little rough at first.  I had to get my wits about me, but I felt like after I got the experience and got to see every thing I settled down.”

After emerging from the fire relatively unscathed, he feels comfortable at left tackle.  He’s seen what kind of looks SEC defenses will throw at him and the type of players he will face on a regular basis.  John Schlarman saw all he needed to see to know that Young is ready to fill the void left by Mosier.

“He’s gotten game reps.  He’s played in the SEC.  We’ve won games with him so I’m confident.”  Schlarman added that even though he didn’t play in the first game, by the end of the season Young received more snaps at left tackle than Mosier.

The coaches believe Young is prepared, but if not, there’s a true freshman who is showing them a lot  of the same things they same from Young a year ago.  Gran said he loves what he’s seeing from Naasir Watkins.

“Athletically, you can see his athleticism.  He’s smart, and boy he is battling through.  The hits those big o-linemen take everyday,” Gran said.  “They’re getting banged around a lot and I love where he’s at right now.  He’s got a chance (to play).  He really does.”

Along with Watkins, Schlarman has a few players who are battling with Young to earn the starting spot at left tackle.  Kyle Meadows can play left or right tackle.  George Asafo-Adjei can play play right tackle in Meadows’ absence.  Mason Wolfe is getting reps once again at left tackle and Nick Haynes has experience at the position.  Currently Schlarman is confident in a seven-man rotation, but wants it to get to ten before the season begins.

Eager to earn his keep, Young is prepared to do whatever it takes to rally around Mosier.

“It does leave a little gap in our line and it has a spot that’s free for the taking right now,” Young said.  “I just have to go out here and outwork the rest of the guys and prove that I’m the one that should be there.”


White nationalists considering rally in Lexington

Charlottesville, Va. protest (Samuel Corum/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

Groups of white nationalists are discussing a rally in Lexington in protest of the city’s planned removal of two Confederate statues from downtown.

Matthew Heimbach of the “Traditionalist Worker Party” has said he and others like him are eyeing Lexington as their next stop after Charlottesville.

A story from the Herald-Leader says, “Heimbach claims people in the Lexington area asked his group get involved in the issue. The group has members in Kentucky and plans to try to recruit more, he said.”

If you saw anything from Charlottesville over the weekend, you know this could get extremely out of hand and you should hope a similar scene doesn’t come to Kentucky.

And if you didn’t see anything from Charlottesville over the weekend, the people at Vice News did an amazing report, which Matt and Ryan mentioned on today’s show, on the events that occurred:


Kentucky to play Monmouth in Citi Hoops Classic in the Garden

New details have emerged regarding Kentucky’s December basketball game against Monmouth in New York City, including how and when to purchase tickets for the event.

The game was officially introduced today as the Citi Hoops Classic, set for Saturday, December 9, 2017 in Madison Square Garden. Tip-off is set for noon.

“This is a great opportunity to play a strong and up and coming team in a historic venue,” John Calipari said of the game. “We love coming to New York and look forward to seeing the Big Blue Nation in full force out east. I’m always excited to partner with Citi to bring great basketball to the fans.”

Tickets for the event go on sale to the general public on August 25, but Citi cardmembers can go ahead and purchase their tickets today through August 24 on CitiPrivatePass.com.


Stephen Johnson to return to practice Wednesday

There were some concerns about the health of UK starting quarterback Stephen Johnson after a photo surfaced showing Johnson sidelined at Monday’s practice in a protective boot on his right ankle.

LOOK: Stephen Johnson Wears a Boot During Practice

Johnson looks to have missed practice again on Tuesday after he was seen without pads, but Eddie Gran told reporters in his post-practice press conference that Johnson is expected to return to the field Wednesday.

Gran did not comment on the extent of the injury, only saying, “Just a boot,” when asked.

Johnson was not wearing the boot on Tuesday.


Kentucky to host Chattanooga in Kroger Field 2021

The Kentucky football program has added the Chattanooga Mocs to its 2021 football schedule, according to Chattanooga’s 2017 football media guide and discovered by FBSchedules.com.

The Cats will host the Mocs on Saturday, November 20 during that 2021 season. It is the first non-conference game on UK’s schedule, as far as we know, and will be the first ever meeting between the two schools.

Chattanooga went 9-4 last season with a 6-2 record in the Southern Conference. It will play at LSU this season, plus trips to South Carolina and Tennessee over the next two years.


Kentucky commit teases two more commitments this week

Will Mark Stoops add two more commitments to his Class of 2018 this week? According to a wide receiver in that class, he will.

Akeem Hayes, the Florida product who decommitted from Louisville to join the Cats back in June, teased a couple of upcoming potential Yahtzees for the program.

Lot of committing going on this week we looking forward to two new BBN members,” Hayes tweeted late Monday night.

One of those commitments may be Jamari Brown, a cornerback only 20 minutes away from Hayes in South Florida. Brown is set to announce his decision on Thursday, and Kentucky is one of his three finalists, along with Auburn and Temple.

“Kentucky is a great school and it’s in the SEC,” Brown recently told AuburnSports.com. “My mom likes Kentucky, too. When I went up there, I knew it’s a place I could see myself playing at.”

Another potential addition to Kentucky’s class is Stanley Garner, who will announce his decision tomorrow. A cornerback from the same area as Hayes and Brown, Garner will pick between Kentucky, Alabama, Clemson, Louisville, Michigan and Tennessee.

Does Hayes know something or is it wishful thinking?


CONTEST: Name the KSR Football Podcast

The KSR Football Podcast — starring former UK quarterbacks Freddie Maggard and Jared Lorenzen; KSR football writer Nick Roush; and me, a former tight end/defensive end at West Broadway Elementary School — has been going strong for a couple of years now with the best Kentucky football coverage around.

We’re already off to a good start this fall, but we still have one big problem: We don’t have a name.

I put a call out earlier in the summer for suggestions, and though we got lots of good ones, we still haven’t decided on one. Well, now our backs are against the wall and a decision MUST be made as the season is right around the corner.

So, here’s one last call for help before we tape this week’s episode later this afternoon. I will read some of my favorites during today’s taping and we’ll have a name in place soon after that.

You can click on this tweet to read the many suggestions we’ve already received:

Submit your own on Twitter or in the comments section below.

You can throw us some football questions for today’s episode, too.

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