After a great weekend in our fair city to the north, Cincinnati (including a stellar Friday night in Newport, Ky whose levee area is actually pretty nice), we are back ready to count down closer to the beginning of college football season. Today’s birthday is one of the Presidents that I consider part of the “late 1800s guys whose names I often forget”, Benjamin Harrison. Harrison was President from 1889-1893, a time period that is best known for not being known at all. While in office, Harrison was generally considered a bad President, using up a government surplus and poorly handling tariff issues that caused problems to the economy. His most noted accomplishment (besides being the last President to have a full beard) was to sign into law the Sherman Anti-Trust Act, becoming the first piece of legislation to directly attack the growing influence of monopolies in the United States. Harrison was the grandson of former President William Henry Harrison and was generally thought to not be up to the job and more of a product of his then-famous name. Harrison went to Miami (OH) University where his time there was often said to have began the schools reign as the “#1 Party School in America.” While his accomplishments as President may have been forgotten, Harrison still deserves credit for being the first President to have electricity installed into the White House….an accomplishment somewhat tempered by the fact that he was reportedly terrified of this invention and refused to touch the light switches for fear of being electrocuted. That fear still drives Hubby to this day.
To the news…..
(1) Well the first shoe has dropped. A reporter for CSTV has predicted UK to win the SEC East this year in football. Yes you read that last sentence correctly. Win the SEC East in football….is that even fathomable? Well to quote one of my friends on the subject, if not now then when? All of the SEC schools in the EAST are very good this year and some have called it the most balanced top to bottom division in major conference history. BUT, none of the teams are great….Florida has tons of talent, but its young….Georgia is better but coming off a disappointing year….Tennessee has questions at lots of positions and is inconsistent…..South Carolina seems on the brink of success but maybe just a bit short. This is Kentucky’s best team in 25 years. If not now, then when? I have a hard time believing the Cats can win the division…..but maybe random reporters from CSTV have the right attitude. This is the Cats time to shine…..if they dont, maybe they never will.
(2) I watched Jared Lorenzen tonight on Sunday Night Football and was quite impressed. Despite the usual playful banter about his weight, Lorenzen showed that he is becoming much more than a novelty act. He made a couple of really strong throws, led a couple of successful drives and looked the part of an NFL leader in the second half. But he also had some Jared moments, including twice taking a sack on 3rd down and taking his team out of field goal range. Still yet, the natives are calling for the Hefty Lefty to get more looks…..everyone loves the Backup QB, but J-Load is starting to showcase that he might be a potential starter in the NFL….and I am excited about that possibility.
(3) We have played phone tag for the last few days with Greg Monroe, the #1 ranked player in America and a top target for UK. There is still no official indication if Monroe will be visiting UK this fall and the Wildcats are still hoping to try and get their lottery ticket in on the most dominating player in America. I probably get more emails about Monroe than any other subject as Cats fans want some glimmer of hope that he may be seriously considering the Cats. Monroe and I have only spoken on one occasion and I could not get a feel for his interest level concerning UK. I have always been told that it would be a miracle if Greg went anywhere but Duke or LSU and I still think that is the conventional wisdom. But I do know that one recruiting analyst told me, “dont be surprised if another school gets in on Greg….he isnt thrilled with either of his two majors just yet.” If thats UK, watch out. Greg Monroe on the team makes the 08-09 Cats team a national title contender…..and gives a counter to the great Semardo Samuels at UL.
(4) I will have more on this tomorrow but two trends on future UK players are developing. First, DeAndre Liggins‘ standing in recruiting circles is rising….which is amazing considering he hasnt really played this summer. But many believe that UK has a potential All-SEC player in Liggins and a future contender for the League. However on the other end, the GJ Vilarino news isnt as good. He is a non-factor in the 09 ratings and his summer play was spotty at best. He will be a story worth watching as this season progresses.
We will have more of our SEC previews on Monday. The new Kentucky Sports Radio begins tomorrow night. Plus more on football from Rob in the afternoon. See ya then….