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Derek Willis is excited about his first Big Blue Madness

Derek Willis is writing a diary for the Kentucky Kernel and his latest entry is all about his two new teammates and his first trip to Big Blue Madness. Willis will be one of the many visitors in town Friday night for the greatest spectacle in the history of basketball practice, along with the Harrison twins, who Willis says will go play in the NBA whenever they want.

He has “no doubt” that Big Blue Madness 2012 will be a good one:

This year will be my first year going to BBM and I have no doubt that it will be a good one. The fans will be witnessing another great team who I think will make it back to the tournament and bring UK and the loyal fans back another championship.

Read Willis’ diary at

Article written by Drew Franklin

I can recite every line from Forrest Gump, blindfolded. Follow me on Twitter: @DrewFranklinKSR

25 Comments for Derek Willis is excited about his first Big Blue Madness

  1. Thats right
    11:51 am October 9, 2012 Permalink

    Jon Hood redux

  2. A.I.
    11:51 am October 9, 2012 Permalink

    “We talkin’ about practice, not a game, practice!”

  3. NewRedMachine
    12:01 pm October 9, 2012 Permalink


  4. Ed
    12:03 pm October 9, 2012 Permalink

    Am I the only who thinks this kid just recommit somewhere else? He’s not going to get a whiff of playing time and takes away a scholarship. It’s good to have a KY boy, but he just keeps plummeting in rankings. We’re not a charity house.

    It’s like the fat unpopular girl who got an invitation by accident to the party. She just keeps rubbing it in everyone’s face, but you know when you tell her it was an accident, it will kill her.

  5. tltaworl
    12:03 pm October 9, 2012 Permalink

    1. You can use a 6’9″ guy who is unathletic (compared to the 5* guys) much easier than the 6’4″ version.

  6. tltaworl
    12:04 pm October 9, 2012 Permalink

    4. Cal gave him a scholly. I trust that he will serve a purpose.

  7. woody's barber
    12:09 pm October 9, 2012 Permalink

    You know the old addage that UK needs a Kentucky boy on the team. He is supposedly one of the Mr basketball candidates and a recruit Rick NITino wanted. I think Cal made it personal with Willis. But i agree that he would be better suited at a Western type of place.

  8. Micah
    12:11 pm October 9, 2012 Permalink

    #4 He’s a 6’9 kid with a ton of potential from in-state, no he isn’t going to be one and done but don’t we need kids to stay around on occasion? I know this sounds crazy but maybe even stay for 4 years and grow as a player over time, the one and done thing is fine but it’s altered everyones logic. Its perfectly ok to take an in-state kid and let him develop here, really no need to belittle him, most 6’9 17 year olds need time to get better

  9. MemphisCat
    12:16 pm October 9, 2012 Permalink

    I think it is a good pick up for Cal and the state of Ky, he wants to be here and has potential to be a good team player. Right now he is better then Eloy was and if he can contribute by his Junior/Senior year he will bring leadership like Darius did his last year, plus he will practice against the best everyday for years.

  10. Bigbluestorm
    12:17 pm October 9, 2012 Permalink

    Its very understandable making negative comments if you having seen him play, i have seen him play and seen him take it to the rack strong, he is a 4 yr player who will be a very good player, we dont need 10 5 star players, so when some arent getting playing time they transfer out, im very proud of the quality players we have and derek willis will work out just fine for this university, everyone cant start and i will go out on a limb and say he will be starting by his junior season after playing 2 season under all this talent will only make him better,and the reason his rankings fell off is he didnt play with the best aau squad and didnt get all the publicity, hes already a signed player what does he have to prove on the aau circuit or the rivals rankings.

  11. peanut butter jelly time
    12:19 pm October 9, 2012 Permalink

    He’s five fouls to use and some space to take up if nothing else. Can always use guys like this.

  12. Rockfield, KY
    12:24 pm October 9, 2012 Permalink

    I’ll like having a player stay for more than 1 year and actually develop. Hopefully he’ll grow into a better version of Jorts, since Willis is supposed to be a good shooter. He isn’t going to take schollies away from anyone. We never fill our schollies anyway and end up giving them to the Sam Malones of the world on a year to year basis.

  13. Brian Long
    12:25 pm October 9, 2012 Permalink

    4 – I am Brian Long, and I don’t approve this message.

  14. Rockfield, KY
    12:26 pm October 9, 2012 Permalink

    11. you nailed it. he didn’t play AAU circuits, so he’ll never rise in the rankings regardless of how good he is. he got what he wanted from the best recruiter in college bball. what else does he have left to prove to anyone?

  15. James K
    12:29 pm October 9, 2012 Permalink

    The people saying he is unathletic have not seen the kid play. He’s a better all around player than Jon Hood, in my opinion. You put this kid in a system with other quality athletes and you’re going to see his skills come out. He’s definitely a Darius Miller type role player, and I don’t even think he’ll rise that high, but he is definitely good enough to play.

    I would make a confident wager that most of you guys have not seen him play.

  16. St. Paul Raiders
    12:29 pm October 9, 2012 Permalink

    Sounds like some people are forgetting that we do need some 3-4 year players to round out the roster and provide leadership. I think people see Jon Hood 2.0 with Willis and right or wrong it’s waaaaay too early to dump that on him.

  17. I like fajitas
    12:41 pm October 9, 2012 Permalink

    I started to write some really off the wall negative post and then I thought.. Wow I must slowly be becoming and old loser… So I decided to write that I hope this young man has a great trip to midnight madness and that he has a great career as a wildcat!!

  18.'s what's for dinner
    12:56 pm October 9, 2012 Permalink

    This kids the next Yao Ming

  19. bluefan
    1:05 pm October 9, 2012 Permalink

    I’ve learned never to question Coach Cal’s recruiting. Not sure why so many of you still do.

  20. Bluey
    1:18 pm October 9, 2012 Permalink

    LOL at all of the UL trolls posing as UK fans on here.

  21. SoCal Will
    1:54 pm October 9, 2012 Permalink

    I have actually seen Derek play as well. He is a very good passer; above average shooter; and sees the floor very well. He is not one of Cal’s uber athletic run and jump finds so he may get frustrated with the roster competition but I think he is better than Scott Padgett in high school and Scott started when we captured #7.

  22. Duke Sucks
    2:33 pm October 9, 2012 Permalink

    I like him. Glad we got him and do think he will leave a mark before he’s gone. But Scott Padgett was a damn good collage bb player.

  23. Eric K
    2:50 pm October 9, 2012 Permalink


  24. bigbluejon
    3:17 pm October 9, 2012 Permalink

    Kick him off the team he is a waste of a roster spot and scholarship.