Have you ever leafed through the poster selection at college bookstores? I guarantee you that there will always be 1) a poster of a cat doing something cute/ironic; 2) a picture of a beach with a crooked palm tree and white sand; and 3) John Belushi wearing the “COLLEGE” sweatshirt in Animal House. It saddens me that these days, a good portion of the kids buying that poster probably don’t know who Belushi is. As a kid raised on “Saturday Night Live” and The Blues Brothers, I cut my teeth on Belushi’s brash brand of humor, which looking back, probably wasn’t very appropriate for children. Alas, I want to thank my parents again for letting me watch such age-inappropriate television, because I can’t imagine googling somebody simply because their picture is synonymous with the college lifestyle.
Sadly, Belushi’s time in the spotlight didn’t last long. In 1982, he overdosed on a mixture of cocaine and heroine at the Chateau Marmont hotel in Los Angeles at the age of 33. Many have lingered on the scandal and ominous foreshadowing surrounding his death, but nothing can overshadow Belushi’s talent, which thankfully lives on via YouTube clips and DVDs.
In fact, Belushi’s famous speech as Bluto in Animal House seems like the perfect pep talk for this Kentucky squad:
Grab your toga and let’s make these news and views a party.
— The hot topic on Wednesday had to be Archie Goodwin. Goodwin’s selfish play against Alabama drew the ire of the majority of the fan base. You can’t fault his motor, because he’s obviously trying hard, but it’s his decisions that are so infuriating right now. Time and time again Tuesday night, Archie flung himself at the basket in hopes of being fouled or the off chance that a wild scoop shot would go in. After the game, Cal said he “just kept telling” Archie over and over against last night that if the refs weren’t going to call those fouls, that he needed to pull up or shoot around them. Or, here’s a novel idea, PASS THE BALL. His play was the most frustrating thing about the Cats’ loss, and continued to smolder on the radio and internet all day. At Auburn, we saw what an effect Archie can have when he’s playing smart and for the Cats to make the tournament, Archie must commit to that style of basketball.
— About that tournament…all eyes now turn to Kentucky’s remaining schedule. Let’s take a look:
Jan. 26: LSU
Jan. 29: at Ole Miss
Feb. 2: at Texas A&M
Feb. 5: South Carolina
Feb. 9: Auburn
Feb. 12: at Florida
Feb. 16: at Tennessee
Feb. 20: Vanderbilt
Feb. 23: Missouri
Feb. 27: Mississippi State
Mar. 2: at Arkansas
Mar. 7: at Georgia
Mar. 9: Florida
With Kentucky’s loss to Alabama in mind, here are my must wins: LSU, @ Texas A&M, South Carolina, Auburn, Vanderbilt, Mississippi State, @ Georgia.
Here are my danger losses that could put Kentucky’s postseason in peril: @ Tennessee, @ Arkanasas
And finally, the resume boosters: @ Ole Miss, @ Florida, Missouri, Florida
I think if the Cats can beat Florida at least once, pull off a win at Ole Miss or home against Missouri, and don’t totally fall on their faces in the SEC Tournament, they’ll be fine. If all else fails, there’s always the SEC Tournament, right??
— If we’re going down, at least we can pull some others with us, right? Miami of Florida ROUTED Duke on Wednesday night in what Dickie V. called the worst Duke loss he’s ever seen in his 34 years of covering college basketball. Layup, after layup, after layup, after layup…
— Football signing day is less than two weeks away. In every night post until then, we’re going to have a recruiting roundup summing up the news of the day. I’ve got a G and I’m sitting on an O, let’s go!
Ryan Timmons — The four-star Franklin County all-purpose back got an offer from Ohio State Tuesday night. Timmons decided not to visit Ohio State a few weeks ago, visited Kentucky this past weekend, and has a visit planned to Florida on February 1st. He’ll announce his decision on February 5th.
Marcus McWilson — The four-star safety announced on Wednesday that he will visit Kentucky this upcoming weekend. McWilson is a former Nebraska commit who was recruited by Vince Marrow, UK’s new Tight Ends coach.
DeAngelo Yancey — Yancey, a wide receiver from Atlanta, committed to Kentucky under Joker’s tenure and reopened his recruitment on Wednesday. Happy trails, DeAngelo.
Jeff Badet — Badet, a three-star receiver, is much better than his ranking suggests. Badet visited campus this past weekend and decided not to take any more of his visits, a good sign for the Cats’ chances with the skilled wide out. Badet is familiar with Neal Brown’s offense and is just the type of player who could have an impact right from the start.
Jason Hatcher — Ahh, the Big Kahuna. The four-star defensive end from Trinity decommitted from USC earlier this week and many believe he’s down to Kentucky and Louisville. Landing Hatcher would be HUGE for the Cats, who weren’t even contenders before Stoops arrived. Not only would it open the previously rusty UK/Trinity pipeline, it would send a message to top in-state recruits that Kentucky is on the rise. Hatcher took his official visit to Kentucky over the weekend and loved it. Even more, his mother loves it, and mama knows best, right?
— In case you missed it earlier, the NCAA is now investigating itself after discovering improper conduct during the Miami investigation. It’s one more sign of how corrupt college athletics’ governing body is and even more, it may mean that UofL assistant Clint Hurtt gets off the hook, as NCAA president Mark Emmert said he will throw out any evidence that was obtained improperly. If they feel like banning themselves, that’d be just fine.
— Finally, a special shout-out to Jamal Mashburn, who has been selected as Kentucky’s Southeastern Conference Basketball Legend to be honored at this year’s SEC Tournament. Mashburn was the face of Kentucky’s return to the top in the early 90’s and it’s great to see him being recognized as such. The faded “Monster Mash” poster in my childhood bedroom approves.
That’s all for now, see you in the morning.