Lets not kid ourselves here. There is almost nothing that occurred last night that is not a complete and total disaster. The Cats lost and lost big and for those that care about college basketball right now, UK’s bomb is the conversation today. But if there can be a bit of a bright spot, one has to give props to UK’s famous fan Ashley Judd. With the Cats playing in her home city, Ashley came to watch the Cats and the ‘Dores as any good fan would do. However Ashley’s sister had a performance last night, meaning that she was unable to get to the game until halftime. Thus Ashley came to Memorial, knowing the Cats were down 30, and arrived to cheer on her team. As the pictures here show, she stayed through the entire game and was the consumate fan.
In fact, Ashley not only stayed, she shouted support and encouragement, including loud applause after a Ramel Bradley layup. Now in fact, this is what good female fans often do…. continue to pull hard for a team even after the game is out of hand. My mother famously went to the Middlesboro-Corbin Freshman Boy’s basketball game (always a battle) and with three minutes to play and my team down 30, the coach put in those of us towards the end of the bench. BoBob Green, Brad Southern, Jeff Anderson, Larry Wayne Adkins and I (the “Murderer’s Row” of Middlesboro Freshman basketball) checked in and prepared to finish out the clock. My mom, knowing that seeing us in a game was like spotting Haley’s Comet, stood up and shouted, “Its ok boys, there is STILL TIME!.” I immediately turned red and Jeff Anderson looked at me and said, “to do what?” That is sort of what Ashley’s loud cheering was like last night….yes it might have been futile, but it was also sweet.
Others can say what they want about Kentucky basketball. But no other team has a famous fan who would come out to a dinky college basketball gym, the week of her husband’s first race in the Daytona 500, the night of her sister’s concert, with her team DOWN 30 and having scored 11 POINTS in the first half and cheered her team on. Only Kentucky basketball and only Ashley Judd would have had that moment. My guess is the PTIs of the world will make mention of that today as it is very impressive. She stood outside the locker room after the game to say hello to the team and try to boost their spirits (it certainly would have boosted mine). For me, the only thing Ashley is known for as much as being a UK fan is running from or with Morgan Freeman in the fog in mystery movies. But at her core, I bet UK basketball means more to her. After her performance last night I give major props to my girl Ashley, a top-notch UK fan.