Oldham County breeds winners. This is 100% fact. So it wasn’t entirely surprising that the North Oldham Little League Playaz (that’s their new AAU name) emerged victorious over the hometown Pennsylvania team. But that doesn’t mean it wasn’t a great night for baseball in Williamsport as the evening served as the official crowning of Griffin McLarty as the world’s most dominant 13-year old…for at least this one night. McLarty carried the hopes of the Commonwealth on his middle school shoulders and responded with a dominant all-around performance in front of 41,848 people. That’s not a typo. There were over 40,000 people packed in the stands to watch 12 and 13-year old boys, shattering a record previously held by To Catch A Predator, Episode 14. McLarty homered in the first inning to give Oldham County their only run and struck out nearly everyone he faced for the first four innings. After the most indecisive set of umpires the world has ever seen delayed the game to debate a fair or foul ball, McLarty found himself in a few jams in the last couple of innings, but benefited from clutch defensive play from his first baseman and catcher and all the positive vibes that came with the ridiculous hats the team moms were wearing in the stands. The good guys emerged victorious and moved another step toward world domination and a possible fight with a Chinese team in the finals, all the while proving that Oldham Country rules. Don’t forget it.
Some other stuff to enjoy before bed…
– With the start of the regular season right around the corner, the Kentucky football team will play their final scrimmage game Saturday and Joker Phillips said he’s told everyone to treat it like a job interview. Joker and the staff are still trying to sort through some of the slotting on the depth chart and will evaluate Saturday’s scrimmage with those decisions in mind. When practice resumes Sunday, he said it will be all about preparing for Western Kentucky and getting his team ready for the game with the Hilltoppers in Nashville. He hinted again Friday that freshmen could be seeing some significant time this season and said that they’re still trying to find guys at wide receiver who will step up and make plays.
– Kentucky football and the UK band: All they do is win! Some of you should be very, very happy about this turn of events. Your football/band experience might be changing….
– Coach Cal is somewhere right now (I think it’s Brazil) getting ready for the FIBA Americas tournament, so there’s not a lot of action around the basketball program and while some schools are getting some unofficial visits (Nerlens Noel and Ricky Ledo at Syracuse), the Cats are on hold for a bit. However, the conference schedule was released Thursday and it again looks like the final stretch of games will be what allows them to clinch a conference championship and build momentum for the tournament. The first nine games of the SEC schedule appear contain the easiest games, with a home matchup with Alabama looking like the toughest game. However, the final seven look like this:
@ Mississippi State
Mississippi State could very well be sitting atop the West, assuming they don’t implode yet again and Vandy and Florida could be in the top-10 by the time Kentucky plays them twice in the final three weeks. A big push to end the season from a team that should be developed into a formidable and consistent power by this part of the schedule should have them sitting firmly as a #1 seed in the NCAA tournament and in the conversation as a possible top overall seed. And that means games in the Yum! Center. We can all support that.
– There was more NFL preseason action Friday night and Alfonso Smith stood out as the Kentucky’s biggest star of the night. The Arizona Cardinal rushed for 39 yards on 12 carries and scored a touchdown, while also hauling in two catches for 21 yards against the Packers. Meanwhile, Randall Cobb didn’t pull in any receptions, but netted 27 yards on two kickoff returns. And his eyes were as beautiful as ever.
– Friday also marked the big start of high school football season and former Cat Craig Yeast recorded his first head coaching victory as Bryan Station shocked Anderson County and matched last year’s win total. Kentucky commitment Patrick Towles threw for 194 yards and a touchdown and ran for 78 yards and three scores, while future teammate Austin Sheehan had five catches for 106 yards. Mason County’s Josh Harris, who was recently named a Second Team All-American, ran for 32 yards in a 50-0 loss to Lafayette.
– If you watched ESPN earlier, you saw the latest episode of their series chronicling the Elite 11 quarterback camp that featured Towles and Auburn commit Zeke Pike. You were also treated to a mystery man showing up several times on screen wearing a Kentucky football camp shirt.
The mystery man is George Whitfield, a very well known quarterback coach, who recently trained Cam Newton for the NFL Draft and turned down an opportunity to work out Terrelle Pryor. I like where his head’s at. Either way, having a respected and well known quarterbacks guru repping the blue and white on ESPN can’t be a bad thing, right? Didn’t think so.
That’s it for now. If you missed Kentucky Sports Radio this morning, make sure you check out the podcast below. It was awesome. No surprise. Check it out.