Happy Boss’s Day!
Yep, it’s that time of the year when you show up to work empty-handed, only to find out that everyone else in the office brought coffee mugs, ties, and fancy ink pens to give to the head honcho. It’s National Boss’s Day 2012, the 55th of its kind.
It all started when Patricia Bays Haroski, a secretary at State Farm Insurance in Deerfield, Illinois, created National Boss’s Day in 1958 in honor of her white-collar father, who she said helped all of his children with good advice throughout their careers. In honor of his birthday, Patricia registered the day with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Four years later, National Boss’s Day was backed by Illinois Governor Otto Kerner, who officially proclaimed the day in 1962. The day quickly picked up steam across the country and is now observed in England, Australia and South Africa.
So, this is your reminder: Be nice to your boss today. If you feel like it.
I’m all drugged up (the legal kind; I’m sick) so let’s run through this before I pass out…
Good news, basketball fans… Tickets for Kentucky’s first five home men’s basketball games will go on sale Tuesday at 6:00 p.m. That’s Kentucky’s two exhibition games (Northwood, Nov. 1 and Transylvania, Nov. 5) and first three regular season home games (Lafayette, Nov. 16; Morehead State, Nov. 21; Long Island, Nov. 23). Tickets will first be available online at www.ticketmaster.com or by calling Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000. Any tickets remaining after Tuesday evening’s sale will also be available to purchase through the UK Ticket Office on Wednesday from 9:00 a.m. — 4:00 p.m. Tickets made available are from the unsold student ticket allotment. Lower level tickets (based upon availability) will be $50 each and upper level tickets will be $42 each.
Also, tickets for the Blue-White Scrimmage at Rupp Arena on October 24th are still available. Lower level tickets are $10 each and upper level tickets are $5 each. Scrimmage tickets may be purchased through the UK Ticket Office (800.928.2287), Rupp Arena Box Office (859.233.3535) and Ticketmaster (800.745.3000). Fans may also obtain scrimmage tickets online at www.ticketmaster.com or at statewide Ticketmaster outlets.
Switching over to football, the big news of the day is the status of Patrick Towles’ high-ankle sprain. In his Monday press conference, Joker Phillips said Towles has been upgraded from out to doubtful this weekend against Georgia. That’s news, right?
“He’s one that could now get up on his toes, and that’s usually a good sign when you have a high ankle sprain,” Joker told the media. “So we’ll take a look at it, probably about Wednesday, see what he can do. He moved around a little bit, not great today. But we’ll take a look at it tomorrow and Wednesday, also.”
With Georgia coming in as a 27-point favorite, there’s no need to try to push Towles out onto the field if he’s not back to 100%. Kentucky should stick with Whitlow and whatever happens, happens.
Joker also talked about the decision to call the game in Fayetteville, one he originally opposed but caved once he realized the severity of the situation.
He said, “Originally, because we had so many young guys, I originally wanted to continue playing. But after you think about it, those guys had not eaten since two o’clock. I don’t think the weather broke â€‘â€‘ it couldn’t have broke before we got off the ground, because the way the plane was shaking. So it had to be â€‘â€‘ again, kind of tossed us around a little bit.”
“So you’re talking, you said one o’clock (in the morning)? We then have to hold us until one o’clock â€‘â€‘ we called in Chickâ€‘Filâ€‘A â€‘â€‘ we called in for some sandwiches, and so we would have gotten fed, possibly. But one, two o’clock, I think it would have been ridiculous to continue to play that game.”
You can talk experience for young guys, hunger, lightning and Chik-Fil-A sandwiches all day, but that game needed to be canceled to save UK further embarrassment. Arkansas was on pace to put up record-breaking numbers and there wasn’t a single person in Big Blue Nation who want to see that beatdown continue.
The injuries have taken a huge toll on UK’s season, but the strength of schedule isn’t doing the team any favors, either. According to a release from the university, three BCS computer rankings have UK with the nation’s toughest schedule. UK took a look at the rankings, which were released Saturday, and Kentucky has played the nation’s toughest schedule according to Anderson and Hester, Colley Matrix and Massey ratings. The Sagarin Ratings have UK at No. 5 in strength of schedule. (The Billingsley and Wolfe ratings do not display a strength of schedule.)
The seven teams that have played Kentucky have a combined record of 37-7, with three of the opponents still undefeated and three having only one loss. UK will play its fifth ranked opponent of the season Sunday when the Wildcats play host to the Georgia Bulldogs. This is only the second time in school history that UK has played five ranked opponents in the first eight games.
It was an ugly weekend for UK football, but there are a lot of good things to say about Kentucky basketball after yet another impressive Big Blue Madness. On Monday, Bryan Lee, the older brother of UK target Marcus Lee, told Rivals that Marcus and the Lee family were very impressed by the visit. He credited the timing of the visit — being in town with UK’s four commits from the class of 2013 and their families — as the reason why they enjoyed it so much. Marcus Lee will take an official visit to Cal next weekend and then we should expect to hear a decision very soon. If his tweets and Instagram uploads from Sunday night are any indication as to which school he’ll choose, Kentucky fans should get ready for another big commitment.
Aaron Harrison Sr. told the Herald-Leader that Andrew and Aaron have known Marcus Lee since they were 8 or 9 years old and Lee has worked out with the twins a couple times in Texas over the past few summers. “He feels comfortable with him,” Papa Harrison said. “He sees what they have done (with their AAU teammate Derrick Griffin) and he feels like he can fit in very well with that.”
Come on down?
With a potential commitment from Lee right around the corner, some fans are worried it’ll affect Julius Randle’s recruitment. Yes, it would have an effect, but it won’t kill UK’s chances. The power forward spot on Kentucky’s 2013-14 roster is Julius Randle’s if he wants it. Marcus Lee, though talented, isn’t going to cut into Randle’s minutes.
And on those rumors that Randle doesn’t want to play with the twins, Aaron Harrison Sr. told the Herald-Leader, “When they committed, Julius called them and he tweeted his congratulations. They’ve known him since they were 8 years old. His mother is a great lady, a really nice lady. All the reports that people heard are so far from the truth. They get along very well. They compete against each other, but then after the game’s over they hang around and talk.”
Don’t forget, the first episode of the All-Access Kentucky will air Wednesday night at 7:00 p.m. on ESPN. The series will provide a never-before-seen perspective of the Wildcats preparation for the basketball season. The episodes will chronicle teaching six new players the Kentucky system and trying to mold high school superstars into instant national champions, all while recruiting the class of 2013. The cinÃ©ma vÃ©ritÃ© series will showcase what life can be like on a top-level collegiate basketball team, providing a unique window into the first step in building a national champion.
The series will be a trip inside the lives of Coach Cal, his staff and the players, the fight for playing time, what happens in the weight room, the inside jokes and pranks. All-Access Kentucky will highlight UK’s seemingly unrivaled ability to land top players and quickly build them into a cohesive team, as they try to repeat as national champion with four freshmen and no starters from the previous season.
(That was copied and pasted from the official press release, if you couldn’t tell. I would’ve described it as “that new Hard Knocks show about Kentucky that is going to be awesome as sh-t.”)
Another programming note: Homeland is great. Watch it.
That’ll do it for now.