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KSR’s Best of 2011


Just because we’re done with the Dirty Birds doesn’t mean the fun stops around these parts. With a few hours left in 2011, we’d like to interrupt your celebrations for a little bit of nostalgia. Maybe it’s because we’ve been drinking champagne since 2 p.m., but we’re feeling a smidge sentimental about the past year. From the Final Four to a summer full of NBA stars on campus to the big football win over Tennessee, 2011 was a great year to be a Wildcat fan. Let’s relive the memories before the clock strikes twelve:

Best Win: Kentucky over Tennessee, November 26th, 2011
Sure, there were many, many basketball victories (Ohio State and North Carolina in the tournament, North Carolina again back in December) that thrilled us over the past twelve months, but none more so than the football team’s streak-snapping, field-storming win over Tennessee. On the shoulders of the unlikeliest of heroes, Matt Roark, the Cats exorcised 27 years worth of demons and salvaged an otherwise miserable season. The football program has its problems, yes, but on that glorious Saturday in November, none of them mattered.

Best fashion trend: Jorts
Sure, we’ve all known about Josh Harrellson’s penchant for denim for years, but for those who love a heartwarming basketball story, 2011 really was the Year of the Jorts. With DeMarcus Cousins and Daniel Orton gone to the NBA and Enes in NCAA prison, Josh knew he had to step up for his team to make a postseason run. After an embarrassing Twitter feud with Coach Cal, Josh got his priorities straight, hit the gym, and dedicated himself to becoming a better basketball player. And he did. On the broad shoulders of the country boy from Missouri, the Cats won the SEC Tournament and made a return to the Final Four. Josh’s hard work and dedication to the game even earned him a spot on the New York Knicks’ roster. How long until we see Spike Lee in jorts?

Best story: Kentucky makes the Final Four
Who would have thought that Calipari’s first Final Four as Kentucky’s coach would come with his second team and not the first? After the Cats saw five players drafted in the first round of the 2010 NBA draft, expectations for his next squad were tempered slightly. And rightly so; the 2010-2011 Cats were good, yes, but lacked the flash and style of its predecessor. With Enes Kanter sidelined by the NCAA, it was up to a pair of unlikely heroes (Josh Harrellson and DeAndre Liggins) and a talented freshman point guard (Brandon Knight) to lead the way. Teamwork, tough defense, and heart got the Cats wins over Ohio State and North Carolina, and their first Final Four in thirteen years.

Best block: Anthony Davis over John Henson, Kentucky vs. North Carolina, December 3, 2011
Words can’t do it justice, so here’s a video:

Best ambassador: Randall Cobb, Green Bay Packers
Back in April, Randall Cobb was drafted by the Super Bowl Champion Green Bay Packers with the 64th pick. And on his first game in the league, he showed everyone why he could one of the most exciting players in the game one day, returning the opening kickoff 108 yards for a touchdown. Cobb is already a fan favorite up in Green Bay, which shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone in the Big Blue Nation. Although he left early, Cobb helped put Kentucky football on the map in many ways; a new crop of kids grew up watching him play in the blue and white, and believe me, the coaching staff plays up Cobb’s impact during recruiting. The football program may currently be awash in uncertainty, but every time they mention that Cobb went to Kentucky during an NFL broadcast, it is a small step forward. Keep rocking, Golden Eyes.

Best 15 Seconds of Fame: Megan Dills
After being knocked down by Indiana fans rushing the court after their win over the Cats on December 10th, Playboy model Megan Dills took to Twitter to tell her tale. And, thanks to Larry Vaught, the Big Blue Nation (and the tabloids) heard her story. Megan Dills may have injured her foot in Bloomington, but that’s a small price to pay for 15 seconds of fame. Rock it, girl.

Best dunk: Darius Miller, Kentucky vs. St. John’s, December 1, 2011
Thanks to Anthony Davis, the list of candidates for this category was almost seven feet tall. However, I’m going to give this one to Darius Miller, who had a monster one-hand jam against St. John’s.

We’ll be back in the morning to talk more about the win over Louisville, swap hangover cures, and maybe even bat around a few New Year’s resolutions. Until then, party on and Happy New Year from all of us at Kentucky Sports Radio.

Article written by Mrs. Tyler Thompson

No, I will not make you a sandwich, but you can follow me on Twitter @MrsTylerKSR or email me.

44 Comments for KSR’s Best of 2011

  1. josh
    10:08 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    If we get 5 guys clicking, watch out!

  2. 7ukncaa
    10:19 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Five you missed IMO . .

    1. Biggest gamne winning shot Knight’s jumper v. OSU
    2. Best 3 pointer – Liggins dagger vs UNC to go to the final four
    3. Biggest Win – lifelong football fan here but the OSU sweet 16 win was bigger IMO. 13 years since we beat a team seeded better than 4 in the tournament. For UK basketball that is way too long.
    4. Best recruiting class – UK #1 . .again

  3. Tom
    10:22 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Harrellson double double tonight.

  4. coachsmithcats
    10:23 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Hmmmm… I don’t think its 2012 just yet ๐Ÿ™‚ Although it was a nice dunk, I imagine we will have a better one by next year, lol

  5. Happy New Year to the BBN
    10:26 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    I disagree, Rick Pitino gets the “best 15 seconds of fame” award. Pants down……… I mean hands down.

  6. OKBlue
    10:27 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    I can’t wait for December 1, 2012 so I can see that dunk by Darius!! Go Big Blue!!

  7. kfund
    10:31 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    The word is “exorcised”, as in the Exorcist, not exercised.

  8. CatlantaBlue
    10:31 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink


  9. LuvDaCats
    10:34 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Nice article Tyler. You are my favorite.

  10. kfund
    10:34 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    And words “can’t” do it justice…

  11. BigBlueSkyDog
    10:36 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Spot on with all your picks, Tyler. Can’t disagree with any of them.

  12. Syrin
    10:37 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    JORTS !!!!

    He STARTED for the Knicks and put up 14 points, 12 boards and went (get this) 4 for 8 from behind the arc !

    JORTS !!!!

  13. Shawon
    10:38 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Where is OH Napier and Poop Tooth? NYE on KSR isn’t fun anymore…

  14. Score The Ball
    10:40 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Jorts bested Boogie tonight. Who would have dreamed of that scenario one year ago?

  15. CatlantaBlue
    10:45 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Tyler, take this as you will, I have a huge girl crush on you… there aren’t many gals with our passion for the game who comment on our games… I love your passion for the team! Keep up the great work! you are the best!

  16. Journalism student
    10:47 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Excellent post,
    Clear purpose
    Conclusion derived by supporting information
    Conversational delivery
    Contagious subjects for
    Call for assistance in running couple of blocks
    Cause I’m buzz cruisin faster than the times’ passin. so I need more
    Oxygen in the alcohol stream to
    Ceep ( sorry all “C” words got drownded) from missing these last
    Clicks of the clock of a damn good year.

  17. Journalism student
    10:53 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Oh yeah
    Cats, Cats. Cats
    Crushed the dards,dards,dards. They didn’t earn a “C”. Hahhh

  18. Another Perspective
    11:09 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Shawon: Wouldn’t say Jorts bested Boogie. Held his own… maybe.

    D. Cousins 9 Pts, 11 Reb, 4 Ast, 2 Stl, 1 Blk
    J. Harrellson 14 Pts., 12 Reb, 0 Ast, 1 Stl, 0 Blk

  19. rixter719
    11:09 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    # 3, isn’t that unbelievable?
    Our man JORTS, who we were amazed with his play at UK last year, but in all seriousness thought he was a one trick drafted..made the team..and recorded a double double in a win tonight!

  20. TylerFan
    11:24 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    great post! nice work young lady!

  21. MKG for MVP
    11:34 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Miller’s dunk over mine? really?

  22. Bulldawg
    11:50 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Happy new year KSR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  23. BPsycho
    12:00 am January 1, 2012 Permalink

    It’s 2012 point blank period.

  24. Kevin the Cable Guy
    12:28 am January 1, 2012 Permalink

    NO WAY Miller’s dunk was better than Gilchrist’s dunk on Portland. The Gilchrist dunk was a Lebron caliber dunk and was absolutely vicious. Miller’s dunk was great too, but MKG’s was the bomb!

    Also, Shane Benahannion or whatever his name is, is a classic example of Rick Pitino’s arrogance. It’s easy to think you’re going undefeated when you play the schedule Loserville played prior to G’town and UK. Talk about cupcake city. Loserville had only 1 (I repeat) only 1 road game prior to RUPP ARENA and the best team they played was Vandy!!! That’s pathetic point bland period.

  25. expatkyfan
    12:34 am January 1, 2012 Permalink

    can anyone post video of either the intro video that Matt loves or the star spangled banner from today? I heard it was awesome! Thanks.

  26. Smelly Steve
    12:43 am January 1, 2012 Permalink

    No way Miller’s dunk was better than MKG’s dunk on Portland.

  27. blitzedanddazed
    12:55 am January 1, 2012 Permalink

    Here is to 2012 being another great year inside BBN !!!!

  28. Mashley
    12:59 am January 1, 2012 Permalink

    Ms. Playmate is not a fan of her KSR publicity apparently

    Megan Dills
    @drewg41 Can I just say that all I said is I do not like KSR .. Nothing more, nothing less. Geez time to get off your soap box.
    1 hour ago via Twitter for iPhone

    …then again she also did say this

    Megan Dills
    โ€œWhen semen is left to dry on skin, the protein left behind can help reduce wrinkles.โ€ Ya hear that ladies ๐Ÿ˜‰ hahaha
    31 Dec via Twitter for iPhone

  29. bigbluefan
    1:12 am January 1, 2012 Permalink

    Tyler…always impressed by your posts. Spot-on! What an exciting year!

  30. Madbee
    1:44 am January 1, 2012 Permalink

    it wasn’tthe opening kickoff, it was third quarter, what made it better was that the new rules for kickoff made the others in that game touch backs, that was the first one he advanced

  31. BPsycho
    2:06 am January 1, 2012 Permalink

    #28 Rofl

  32. cayts
    3:46 am January 1, 2012 Permalink

    the kids call that ho-speak

  33. Royal Cat
    4:39 am January 1, 2012 Permalink

    Biggest loser of 2011: Drew Franklin. What a piece of crap.

  34. playersfan
    8:13 am January 1, 2012 Permalink

    Drew “just let them play” is the dumbest statement ever made about basketball. If the referees follow the rules and call the fouls, everyone of them, then the players will learn to play by the rules, or they will be sitting on the bench, where they belong. Basketball is a game of skill and agility, shooting and handling the ball. It’s a game of strength and size in rebounding, which makes a place for everyone. This game was a great example, the only way an inferior team can play against better talent is to foul and disurpt the skill level. Is that what you want? This attitude carries over to an even more extreme. In the final minutes of a close game the referees do not call a foul, “because they do not want to effect the outcome of the game” Question- If the referees do not require one team to follow the rules, is that not affecting the outcome more than if they require the players to play within the rules?

  35. SexnNursinHomes
    8:39 am January 1, 2012 Permalink

    23- figured you’d be right on tha money
    28- hahaha

    33- 2011 is so yesterday, it’s 2012 now. Franklin wins, you lose. 2nd place sucks, huh?

  36. SexnNursinHomes
    8:48 am January 1, 2012 Permalink

    34- there was 52 fouls called, there was no showing of skill set or agility, because the refs were blowing the GD whistle every 3 seconds. How does a team show “skill and agility” when there is a break in action every 2.3 miliseconds. How does a team get into a flow?????? I don’t knnow what game you watched, but it wasn’t UK vs ul.

    The refs prevented the teams from getting into the flow of the game, which may have had a lot more to do with UK’s crappy fg percentage than it had to do with ul defense.

  37. SexnNursinHomes
    8:49 am January 1, 2012 Permalink

    there were 52 fouls called * correction

  38. bucket2378
    9:04 am January 1, 2012 Permalink

    Beating UNC in the Final to get to the first FF in 13 years is the best game and knocking off OSU is second. Beating UT, after 27 years, is fine and all, has to be third. The game was boring, UT is way down, and the win gives us one more year of Joker ball. It’s not like it is going to turn the program around.

  39. Hambone
    9:25 am January 1, 2012 Permalink

    I disagree with best game. I mean, really? The Tennessee game? They were freakin’ terrible this season and so were we. It was kind of a big deal based on historical significance, but it would have meant a lot more to me had it been when the Vols were a “real” Tennessee team — that is, when they were worth a shat. It was a big deal but it certainly isn’t beating North Carolina to return to the Final Four.

  40. mn
    9:48 am January 1, 2012 Permalink

    video of the anthem would be nice…anyone?

  41. barn
    9:48 am January 1, 2012 Permalink

    the voice of reason. but i’m afraid the game is growing rougher and farther from that of a game of finesse and skill that it used to be. i agree that if the refs would enforce the games according to the rules, then players would eventually play within the rules. the way i see it the refs now have total control of the outcome of most games i watch. there is so much contact that there could be a foul called on nearly every dribble. the refs have way to much leeway in calling a game. the way it is now it looks way too easy for these officials to get rich quick in vegas.

  42. barn
    9:49 am January 1, 2012 Permalink

    34))–#41 was for you. sorry

  43. schwing
    12:40 pm January 1, 2012 Permalink

    so were the demons in good shape or bad shape for their exercise after 27 years?

  44. Joe Big Blue
    1:41 pm January 1, 2012 Permalink

    I’m sorry but UK’s win over Ohio State was the best win. That team suffered a moral defeat when kanter was ruled intelligible, they couldn’t win a road game, Brandon Knight was being unfairly compared to wall, and no one thought they would even be able to keep the Ohio state game close let alone win, except for Charles “That’s Turrible” Barkley. They kept it close, Jorts was incredible against Sulley, he gave him the Jorts fastball special, knight hit an incredible shot to pull off the upset. It shocked the country. The Tennessee game was good because it finally ended that streak but it was one awful team playing another awful team and UK turned out to be less awful. IMO, there is no contest.