I can officially say that Dolly Parton is one of my ten favorite people in the world that I dont know. A woman from the mountains of East Tennessee, just like most of my extended family, she rose to prominence on Sunday Morning Gospel shows and through a combination of an amazing voice, physique and personality, she became one of the most known and beloved people in this country. But thats not why I like her. I like her because she is an individual who can fit in anywhere and make people of all walks of life happy. Whether in a congregation in Seveirville, Tennessee, on stage at the Oscars playing for Jack Nicholson or a bar full of left wingers in San Francisco, the entire crowd will feel a connection with Dolly and think she understands them. That is a gift and Dolly has it as well as anyone in the public life. I picked Dolly today because I spent a good deal of tonight watching election returns, pulling for Obama (who came up short obviously), playing online poker and listening to Dolly sing the gospel hymn “Farther Along” (now there is a combo that I bet no one else repeated). That song, which to me embodies why those of us that believe in God can deal with the realities of everyday life, sung by Dolly Parton is about as good as it gets to me and is a good way to spend a Tuesday night…..plus, it of course provides a perfect transition to the UK news of the day……
(1) DAVID LOCKWOOD: The most unfortunate news of the today came out of West Virginia where reports are that UK DB Coach David Lockwood is being considered as defensive coordinator/recruiting coordinator for the Mountaineers. While it isnt clear that he has accepted the job or even been offered the position, the news is a bit disconcerting. Lockwood is one of the key figures in the last couple of seasons’ great job on the recruiting trail and more than one player has pointed to him as a reason why they came to Lexington. Add to that the continued improvement we have seen from the Cats’ defensive secondary (Paul Warford had quite the game in Nashville) and it would be a big loss to see him head to the land of mountain mamas. Cross your fingers it falls through.
(2) RAZOR RAMON: Talked to one of our sources close to the team who says that the biggest change he has seen all season is the dramatic improvement of Razor Ramon Harris. According to the source, the coaching staff is as pleased with Harris as anyone on the team and believes that he has made a rise that was unexpected and dramatic. Harris was said to have had a great summer, but the staff believes he is the best defender on the team and may be the best at actually knowing the team defense, a skill that is remarkable considering his limited college experience. While some of the players and their roles in the future are up in the air, Harris is being slotted as a defensive stopper for the next few years and is proof that more good things beyond Northern Exposure have come from Alaska.
(3) SCOTTY HOPSON: Remember when we told everyone that Scotty Hopson was likely to look at schools beyond Mississippi State even when other sources said we were crazy and “making things up” (which usually translates to “I dont like that piece of news). Well our source on that news continues to update us on Hopson and the recent news is very interesting. For some time now, Tennessee has been the favorite for Scotty’s services, thanks in part to his admiration for Bruce Pearl’s style of play and the UT coach telling Scotty he would start from day 1 in Knoxville. But recent news is suggesting that UK may be dropping out of the Hopson race. The folks in Hopkinsville, including coaches, havent heard from UK in a while and wonder if the interest is still there, after being hot and heavy just a couple of months ago. It will be interesting to see if this trend holds and if the time that Hopson could be a potential player for UK has passed.
(4) GUY MORRIS: Ok, wants some “NO WAY” news? Multiple folks on the internet, including at least one solid source are saying that Guy Morris is considering becoming the head FB coach at Boyle County. Read that sentence again. Guy Morris….who coached UK and Baylor and has been considered for Div I assistant jobs this year is considering coming and coaching Boyle County High School. He apparently owns a farm there and is contemplating the move, possibly interviewing this week. Unbelievable if true.
(5) JAI LUCAS: I hope you folks saw the Alabama-Florida game tonight and got to see the performance of KSR’s favorite non-UK player, Jai Lucas. After being derided by many as too short for Division I basketball and a player who would have no impact, the starting Florida PG had 19 points, dished 5 assists and was the key ingredient to the Gators’ huge win on the road. After following recruiting for some time, you are used to seeing the vast majority of the kids you follow and interview go elsewhere. But I am still smartin over Jai…..he could have been something in Lexington….
Off to Middlesboro during the day today…..the others will keep the site rolling and our 2008 recruiting outlook comes out Wed night…..