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Will Marshall-Jodie Rueger    Alan Smith                                    Widlcat28

BTI Rant of the Day:  I watched the majority of the Calipari presser yesterday, and he once again talked a great deal about how the schedule philosophy is going to change from the way it has been for a few years.  Expect a real murderer’s row type schedule.  But, I have one question for Coach Cal and Mitch Barnhart: WHY CAN WE NOT GET A YEARLY SERIES WITH WESTERN KENTUCKY GOING??  Well, I certainly have my theory and that is UK is scared of getting beat.  Unlike playing Eastern or Murray, where a win is almost assured, playing WKU these days is an iffy proposition, as evidenced by the Toppers win over UL last season, and 3 NCAA Tournament wins the last two years.  But, if Calipari follows through with his promise of a tougher schedule and more neutral site games, then I think taking on WKU EVERY YEAR should be an obvious choice.  Western would play in Lexington one year, and then play in Nashville the next.  Seems like an easy choice, but I have a gut feeling it won’t happen. 

1. Here is what is facing the UK baseball team starting tonight.  They have 3 conference games remaining, as they travel to East Division leader Florida.  They are right now 1/2 game back of the final conference tournament slot, behind Vandy.  Vandy is at home for its final 3 games against Tennessee, who is currently in last place in the East Division.  So, as you can tell, the Cats have their hands full.  BUT, Vandy is likely to make the NCAA Tournament, while the Cats hopes likely hinge on a SEC Tournament run.  So, if they play with that motivation, anything is possible.  But you gotta say, for a team ranked in the Top 25 preseason, this has been a dissapointing season.

2. It’s an exciting time for me right now because for the first time in what seems like a decade, the Reds may actually have a team that is capable of competing for a playoff spot.  They have the best road record in baseball, and I would argue one of the 3 best pitching staffs in the big leagues.  Take a look at their starting 5:

Johnny Cueto: 6 starts, 3-1, 1.59 ERA, 32 K’s, 2 shutouts
Aaron Harang: 7 starts, 3-3, 2.93 ERA, 37 K’s, 1 shutout
Edinson Volquez: 7 starts, 4-2, 4.40 ERA, 43 K’s, 2 shutouts
Micah Owings: 6 starts, 3-3, 4.32 ERA, 19 K’s, 0 shutouts
Bronson Arroyo: 7 starts, 5-2, 7.02 ERA, 23 K’s, 1 shutout

Combined: 33 starts (16 quality starts), 18-11, 3.87 ERA, 154 K’s, 6 shutouts

The Reds are getting a quality start (7IP+ with 3ER or less) EVERY OTHER TIME OUT.  They already have as many shutouts this season as ALL OF LAST SEASON.  I will admit they are playing in a tough division with the Cubs and Cardinals, BUT I think those teams are not gonna enjoy playing Cinci this year.  Oh, and also, the Rays suck again Beisner. 

3. Not only is the Kenyon Martin-Mark Cuban ued adding intrigue to the Mavs-Nuggets series, but now there are reports of conflict between Carmelo’s bi*** wife and some Mavs fans, and the claim of racial slurs.  The funniest think about it all is the series has been pretty non-competitive. 

4. Man of the Year: Mike Masselli (for taking it to Skip Bayless)

Article written by Bryan the Intern