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Michael Kidd-Gilchrist’s Wednesday News & Views

Wednesday is the birthday of one of my favorite Cats, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist. There aren’t enough superlatives in the dictionary for the former Kentucky player, who is now the face of the Charlotte Bobcats. Although he was only at Kentucky for one season, he will go down as one of the most beloved players in its history for many reasons, but perhaps most of all, his perseverance. Michael is incapable of giving up, something he proved time and time again on the court, and off of it as well. On a team with so many stars, MKG stood out for his tireless work ethic, which led him to start “The Breakfast Club,” an early morning weight lifting session that this year’s squad is continuing. His work ethic became so famous that it spawned an acronym all it’s own: WWMKGD. Feeling weak on your morning run? WWMKGD? About to pass out during P90X? WWMKGD. Can’t power through that last bite of cheeseburger? WWMKGD!

While in town for the Alumni Game, MKG helped out with Cal’s Fantasy Camp and when he wasn’t passing out water and towels to the campers, he was working on his game with members of the Bobcat staff. Hours after his former teammates had left the Craft Center to go reconnect with old friends, MKG was still there, which is why if anyone can drag the Bobcats out of the cellar, it’s him.

Happy 19th birthday, Michael. Maybe, just for a second, take time to relax and enjoy it.

— Tuesday was a sloooow news day in UK land, with most of the talk centering around the current state of the football team. With Steve Spurrier on his way to town to rub salt in all of our wounds, things don’t appear to be getting better anytime soon. In fact, the Gamecocks’ 21-point spread over the Cats is the biggest they’ve had since in an SEC game joining the league since 1992, matched only by the spread against UK in 2001. Ouch.

— There is positive news, I swear. Maxwell Smith threw some balls at practice and is expected to play on Saturday, according to Randy Sanders. Sanders said he didn’t look 100%, but he expects him to be close to that by game time (stop me if you’ve heard this one before). Kentucky’s offense clearly moves best under Smith, and for UK to look respectable at the very least, he has to be in the game.

— If Smith can’t go, the staff is preparing Jalen Whitlow as best they can, continuing to give him most of the reps at #2. Sanders said the staff is comfortable with Whitlow calling 10% of the plays in the playbook at this time, especially against a defense like South Carolina’s (big, mean, fast).

— Spurrier was his usual Spurrier self Tuesday when talking about the upcoming game. When asked about the game, he said: “I think we are better than them. But if we don’t play better than them, they can certainly beat us.” Sadly, that almost seems like a compliment coming from him.

— Remember Mikie Benton’s hit on Jordan Reed in the Florida game? The SEC ruled on Tuesday that the hit was indeed “targeting,” but they won’t suspend Benton because the impact was to Reed’s shoulder.

— Don’t even think about it, Karen Sypher:

— Remember how Louisville mayor Greg Fischer’s efforts to bring an NBA team to the city seemed stalled by UofL’s ironclad contract with the Yum Center? On Tuesday, Tom Jurich told the Courier-Journal’s Tim Sullivan that he is “willing to discuss” sharing the Yum Center with an NBA team, but he is not happy that the mayor went “behind his back” to meet with city leaders about the campaign on September 14th:

“We’ve always been very flexible, always tried to help any way we could. Everybody asked us to be a team player six or seven years ago. We had zero goals to go downtown. That was not even in our strategic plan. We were open and honest with everybody that we dealt with. We said, ‘We’ll go. We’ll be a team player. We’ll do it.’ But it’s starting to look like the ultimate bait and switch, isn’t it?”

Fischer told Sullivan that he has communicated his interest in bringing a pro team to both Jurich and UofL president James Ramsey in the past, and felt that having UofL representatives present at the meeting might complicate things. If Jurich is serious about being open to sharing the Yum Center with an NBA team, he needs to be willing to renegotiate the university’s contract with the venue, and for some reason, I don’t see that happening anytime soon. Until then, expect more “he said, she said” PR squabble.

— Congrats to the UK baseball team, who just pulled in the 11th ranked recruiting class in the nation (fifth in the SEC). That’s the third highest ranking for the team in school history, behind 2008 and 2009’s classes. The team is coming off one of its most successful seasons ever and is more than poised to follow last year’s record-setting run. Go Cats.

— Finally, get ready:

16 days until Big Blue Madness.

Be back soon.

Article written by Mrs. Tyler Thompson

No, I will not make you a sandwich, but you can follow me on Twitter @MrsTylerKSR or email me.

29 Comments for Michael Kidd-Gilchrist’s Wednesday News & Views

  1. BUCats
    11:12 pm September 25, 2012 Permalink

    Enes is a creeper. Trying to hook up with chicks over twitter…

  2. Gwar
    11:42 pm September 25, 2012 Permalink

    I’ll be real plain here. USC will throttle these boys Sat. If you thought 23.5 was generous last Sat, then get to your bookie in a hurry on this one.
    SOS is coming to town with redemption on his mind and is bringing the fastest D in the country. Oh, and the best RB as well.
    It really doesn’t matter who the Cats have under center, call it 4+ INTs on the day and watch for Ace Sanders to hit 250+ all-purpose yards.
    And as bad as you might think it will be, just watch UK find a way to embarrass themselves beyond your wildest imagination.

  3. Matt Jones
    11:46 pm September 25, 2012 Permalink

    I like Enes Kanter’s specificity on the women he wants

  4. katzrjamers
    12:03 am September 26, 2012 Permalink

    re: picture: 16 days until Big Blue Madness. Four more future NBA players from UK, but pay attention to the man in the upper right hand corner. Pitino had Nazr Mohammed, a player with potential and little fanfare who is still in the league today after enrolling at UK in 1995 and sharing PT with Jamaal Magloire. They both did more than OK in college and in the NBA. I believe WCS will be Cal’s equivalent to Nazr. He’s just in a little better shape than Nazr was when he entered UK, and he’s got the biggest ‘brows of anyone in the photo. Go UK!

  5. bmwuk
    12:11 am September 26, 2012 Permalink

    I look forward to basketball season just to ease the pain of a debacle year in football. Let’s get #9

  6. 44 Stitches
    12:35 am September 26, 2012 Permalink

    @ #4…

    I see what your trying to reach for but it’s not really in reach. When Nazr came to UK he was over 300 lbs and considered a project. WCS isn’t close to 300 lbs and was a 4 star recruit. He isn’t a project.

  7. katzrjamers
    1:59 am September 26, 2012 Permalink

    @#6… yes, you are right. No one considers WCS a project, especially me .. I think he’s ready to go on day one, but he will be taught as he plays at college level. If I’m still around 17 years from now, I think I will see him still in the league and doing well. Just saying, did you really think Nazr would still be around today? GO UK! Nine’s on the line.

  8. UKus2012
    2:15 am September 26, 2012 Permalink

    Happy B day MKG! We love you.

  9. Catlogic15
    2:31 am September 26, 2012 Permalink

    I am so over Enes Kanter. Can we please move on?

  10. WhatSheOrder?FishFilet?
    2:46 am September 26, 2012 Permalink

    you down with mkg?

  11. Catlanta
    6:20 am September 26, 2012 Permalink

    Hopefully, the NCAA will clear Noel before Madness.

  12. Jenny Craig Pitino
    8:24 am September 26, 2012 Permalink

    The city of Louisville and the state of KY signed away almost all of the rights to the YUM center to UL. If a NBA team came, they would have to play their games around UL’s men and women basketball, and give most of the money from the boxes to UL. Who is the financial genius that wrote this contract for the city?

  13. WePayAllTheTaxes
    8:31 am September 26, 2012 Permalink

    Arena Envy Matt??? YOU want an NBA team?? Put it into that old barn known as Rupps Dump. We in LOUISVILLE pay all the taxes in this 3rd world stste so get over it.

  14. Azubuike's Bicep
    8:31 am September 26, 2012 Permalink

    Can MKG share the News & Views with Opie Winston?

  15. Gay Ryan Lemond
    8:37 am September 26, 2012 Permalink

    How do you know Enes was looking for a woman??

  16. UKBlue1!
    8:43 am September 26, 2012 Permalink

    #13 city leaders or UofL alumni and supporters. They didn’t look our for the taxpapers. #14 the dump is still one of the top college arena’s in basketball. Four NCAA title teams have been home to Rupp. The NCAA hosted a final four in the venue. I believe it you will check your facts, it also hosts the 2nd/3rd Round of the NCAA tourney this year. Idiot.

  17. Bubba Earl
    8:46 am September 26, 2012 Permalink

    Louisville fans think of Tom Jurich as mayor and I believe he thinks it as well!!

  18. bluefan
    8:55 am September 26, 2012 Permalink

    Happy Birthday, MKG! <3

    As a Louisvillian, I'm ashamed the city is letting Jurich & Pitino get away with this.

    Who cares about football with the guys above on the way in?
    Go CATS!!!

  19. 44 Stitches
    9:15 am September 26, 2012 Permalink

    @ #6… I hear you. No I didn’t think Nazr or anybody now a days would or could play as long as he has in the NBA. Also I don’t know you from a man on the moon but dang I hope you’re here in another 17 yrs. I hope we all are.

  20. baba booey
    9:46 am September 26, 2012 Permalink

    Does anyone else think WCS looks just like Eloy?! Wow

  21. UKEngr
    10:16 am September 26, 2012 Permalink

    Nerlens looking good in the blue & white

  22. Reality
    10:31 am September 26, 2012 Permalink

    What a great arena the Yum Center is! And it ONLY cost the state $75 million upfront AND the City of Louisville ONLY had to commit to paying $10M per year for the next few years (few=30). And now Jurich wants to get pissy because he’s the tenant and didn’t get consulted on the prospects of an NBA team. UL is fleecing the city and state plain and simple.

  23. Chicago Chris
    11:13 am September 26, 2012 Permalink

    Funny how low our expectations are for elite athletes where if a talented player is actually a decent person we are amazed. Basically, we expect elite athletes to be d***s and we’re mostly okay with that.

  24. notplayingthisgame
    12:13 pm September 26, 2012 Permalink

    That picture needs a point guard!

  25. schwing
    12:36 pm September 26, 2012 Permalink

    that is 100% the nicest thing steve spurrier has ever said about kentucky football.

  26. Common Sense
    4:04 pm September 26, 2012 Permalink

    Why was Mikie Benton’s hit reviewed? He was targeting a player? Oh that player happened to have the ball. People who are supposed to tackle aren’t supposed to target the person with the ball? Makes sense, looking forward to UK having literally 0 tackles this weekend since we aren’t allowed to tackle anymore.

  27. Coaches Agent
    11:31 pm September 27, 2012 Permalink

    Jurich should have been a lawyer instead of an AD. The way he can fleece people he would have made Milburn Mills and the Fin Fin gang look like inexperienced hicks. It is little wonder UofL is the most profitable NCAA basketball team given the deal they cut with the Yum Center.
    Jurich is a whiney little bratt.