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One World Trade Center’s Tuesday News and Views

Good evening, friends and foes of Kentucky Sports Radio, and welcome to your May 1st, 2012 edition of the News and Views. Tonight, we salute One World Trade Center, the lead building of the World Trade Center complex in Lower Manhattan that just surpassed the Empire State Building as New York City’s tallest structure. On Monday, just one day before the anniversary of Osama Bin Laden’s death, construction workers added steel columns to the unfinished frame that brought the building’s total height to just over 1,250 feet. That’s a couple feet higher than the rooftop of the Empire State Building’s observation deck.

One World Trade Center, formerly known as the Freedom Tower, will be the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere and the third-tallest building in the world once it is completed in 2013. When the spire is in place atop the building, 1 WTC’s pinnacle height will reach a symbolic 1,776 feet in reference to the year this great country was founded.

I visited the site back in November when Kentucky was in town to beat Kansas and it is an unbelievable sight to behold. Not only is its record-breaking size and construction remarkable, but its significance and tribute to those lost on 9/11 makes it a truly special place right in the heart of the world’s greatest city. I encourage all of you to take an afternoon to visit if you’re ever in the Big Apple.

News… Views…

 The big news on Monday came from Frankfort, where a state audit unveiled a long list of misconduct from former Agriculture Commissioner Richie Farmer. The 150-page report included findings of controversial spending, poor personnel management, time and travel concerns, using state employees and money for personal projects, and an extravagant conference that cost Kentucky taxpayers $96,000 and had less than 200 attendees. Farmer had his staff order excessive numbers of gifts, including rifles, rifle cases, knives, cigar boxes, shopping mall gift cards and watches for the 2008 SASDA (Southern Association of State Departments of Agriculture) conference that was attended by just 12 other commissioners. The excess gifts were taken to Farmer’s home after the conference.

Careless spending by politicians happens everywhere at every level, so it’s tough to condemn Farmer for all of the findings, but a couple of instances from the  investigation are just a complete embarrassment to the administration. The story of Farmer having state employees take him hunting is the worst in my eyes, especially since he reportedly shot a deer from inside a state-issued vehicle and then ordered the staff member to bag the animal for him. He also ordered an employee to leave a training course at a local university to drive him to a outdoorsman store Indiana.

Farmer’s personal backyard basketball court — installed by state employees with $900 worth of concrete from a vendor — also jumps off the pages of the report. As does the four missing laptops (purchased as upgrades for state employees), the rush delivery of a 60-inch television for his personal office during March Madness, and the $60,000/yr. job for his girlfriend, who co-workers say rarely does any work.

The misbehavior by Farmer during his eight-year tenure is a slap across the faces of taxpayers, the same people who loved and idolized him as homegrown basketball star in Kentucky. He was elected to office based on his popularity and then abused his power for his own personal gain and enjoyment. His legacy will now be defined as a corrupt politician, rather than Mr. Basketball from Clay County with 898 career points for the Kentucky Wildcats. What a shame.

 Now, let’s move on to the positive news from around Kentucky basketball, including a possible addition to the 2013-2014 roster. 2013 wing Troy Williams is ready to announce between Kentucky and North Carolina and he’ll do so on Tuesday afternoon. But unlike most top recruits, the No. 7 player in the country won’t need an ESPNU special with Dari Nowkhah or a press conference from his high school; he will announce via Twitter.

After hitting a game-winner at the Nike EYBL Hampton over the weekend, Williams told Evan Daniels of he likes Kentucky’s get-up-and-down style and he has a good relationship with Coach Cal. He said the very same thing about North Carolina and Roy Williams.

It’s crazy that a top 10 player is about to announce between Kentucky and one other school and there really isn’t much excitement surrounding it. That’s because the class of 2013 is loaded with talent and Cal is involved with the best of the best. Williams will likely pick UNC — his uncle Boo let it slip in an interview — and it won’t hurt the Cats one bit if he does.

 If you thought Arizona had an advantage in landing Mark Lyons because of his relationship with Sean Miller, well, you were wrong. Lyons told Adam Zagoria’s that he’s focusing on three schools and there is no favorite in the group. He said Arizona doesn’t have an advantage “at all.” The junior transfer is focused on finals right now and plans to take visits to Kentucky, Arizona, and Kansas when he’s finished. He said he’s going into the recruiting process with open eyes and he’s doing to do whatever is asked of him by the school he commits to.

 The news on Anthony Bennett is there is no news on Anthony Bennett. Although he is expected to cut his list to two or three schools this week and finally start taking his visits next week.

 Kentucky’s third recruiting option at power forward may end up not being an option at all. Virginia Tech’s Montrezl Harrell still hasn’t asked for his release from the Hokies, and there is a chance he could stay put now that former assistant coach James Johnson is back in Blacksburg to fill Seth Greenberg’s shoes. Johnson, who quit two weeks ago for Clemson, wasn’t the main recruiter in Harrell’s recruitment but he could be just enough to get Harrell to stick around.

 You can plead all you want for the basketball rivalry with Indiana to continue, but it’s close to coming to an end, regardless of how much the 56-game battle means to you. Most of Big Blue Nation believes it would be a sin to discontinue the annual game with the Hoosiers; that same group of people don’t have a say in the matter, unfortunately. It all boils down to revenue and neither side is caving on the dispute. Kentucky is even willing to play on Indiana’s side of the river every year in Indianapolis, so long as it’s a 50/50 ticket share, but the Indiana administration is adamant on playing in Bloomington. If neither side gives in, we’ve seen the last of the Cats and Hoosiers, for at least the next few years.

 To those arguing Kentucky needs Indiana on the schedule next year from a competition standpoint, keep in mind that Kentucky already has non-conference games against Duke, Louisville, Maryland, a road game in the SEC/Big East Challenge, and an undetermined slate of games in one of those weekend invitationals. UK doesn’t need the game to improve its strength of schedule. The Cats aren’t afraid either. It’s just all about the money.

 How about Rick Pitino saying he doesn’t read the Courier-Journal because he’s upset with what they write? That makes all of us.

 Kentucky baseball is now tied with LSU and South Carolina atop the SEC standings. The third-ranked Bat Cats‘ next series will be at home against Florida this weekend, with the first game of the series being televised nationally on ESPNU on Thursday night. Florida trails Kentucky and South Carolina by two games in the SEC East.

 This Derrick Rose/Titanic mashup is Monday’s winner:

That’ll do it for now. Be back here at 9:00 a.m. when we get the party started again.

Article written by Drew Franklin

I can recite every line from Forrest Gump, blindfolded. Follow me on Twitter: @DrewFranklinKSR

32 Comments for One World Trade Center’s Tuesday News and Views

  1. I bleed red
    10:57 pm April 30, 2012 Permalink

    Say ye say ye don’t we do this every day day

  2. Big Sean
    10:59 pm April 30, 2012 Permalink

    1. I work them long nights, long nights to get a payday.. (HUH)

  3. I bleed red
    11:07 pm April 30, 2012 Permalink

    2. Finally got paid now I need shade and a vacay!

  4. mass confusion
    11:07 pm April 30, 2012 Permalink

    Corrupt as s Republicans

  5. I bleed red
    11:11 pm April 30, 2012 Permalink

    White girls politican that’s that Sarah Palin!

  6. Swag Swag Swag Swag
    11:13 pm April 30, 2012 Permalink

    5. Whoa… make the ground shake that’s an assquake
    Build a house upon that A$$ that’s an Asstate

  7. in this i believe
    11:13 pm April 30, 2012 Permalink

    Why can’t we quit rick?
    Cause he won’t quit this “if I say it, it’s true” delusion
    He called out the CJs’ beat writer in a press conferance
    about the writers ‘ article questioning ricks’ practices causing injuries.
    Was rick calling the guy out in publiic due to Just hearing about it?

  8. HeshimuEvans'2ndGradeTeacher
    11:15 pm April 30, 2012 Permalink

    That video was stupid.

  9. ????
    11:18 pm April 30, 2012 Permalink

    Are we not playing UNC next year?

  10. Richard Beeze
    11:26 pm April 30, 2012 Permalink

    I don’t blame Rick one bit for not reading the CJ. It’s a shame you have a championship caliber basketball team in your city that just went to the Final Four and yet they still focus on that team from Lexington. smh

  11. in this i believe
    11:33 pm April 30, 2012 Permalink

    ? How would he know if they did or didn’t

  12. Coc
    11:35 pm April 30, 2012 Permalink

    We need to get mark lyons to get to the next level…cal will be able control him!!!

  13. kywildcat
    11:51 pm April 30, 2012 Permalink

    wow that video is bad

  14. cats11
    12:33 am May 1, 2012 Permalink

    That video is awesome.

  15. zcats
    1:30 am May 1, 2012 Permalink

    The IU UK issue isn’t about money. It is about what happened in Bloomington. Crean whipped up the Indiana faithful to a incredible fever pitch and it resulted in a lot of abusive behavior that bordered on dangerous. There were a lot of racial based insults spewed from the IU fans and those near the UK bench predicted that the series would end. When the Kentucky players were trapped by their fans after the game (especially Miller who was on the floor) it was crazy and our kids were vulnerable and unprotected in that sea of nuts.

    This series had to be moved to neutral courts before when the environment in each other’s gym made it impossible to win an away game. The neutral court format was the best in college ball with sold out crowds split 50/50 with IU/UK fans. I disagree that the majority of fans feel that dropping IU would be a sin, at least those of us who got to experience their fans face to face either in Bloomington or Atlanta. UNC is a much better rivalry.

  16. old_school
    7:23 am May 1, 2012 Permalink

    12 – this is the exact attitude that is ruining UK.
    If getting to the next level means taking chances on thugs – maybe we ought to aim a little higher.

  17. UKGirl1971
    7:51 am May 1, 2012 Permalink

    The IU fans in Atlanta were terrible. Outside the CNN Center in Atlanta the IU fans were running their mouths at UK fans.I would have to say that IU fans are worse than UL fans. IU fans actually thought they were going to beat us for a 2nd time. NOT!!!!!

  18. wildbuck
    8:12 am May 1, 2012 Permalink

    The home schedule for next year will be awful. We are playing alot of big games, but they are all at neutral sites, or away. Season ticket holders will not be happy with the home slate next year.

  19. WeareKENTUCKY
    8:16 am May 1, 2012 Permalink

    16- thugs? Wait. Isn’t that what they called cousins? And I think he turned out alright! He got in an incident where he was defending his teammates, is that an excuse? No, but learn a little more about the kid then just taking the easy way and calling him A “thug”

  20. Cal is going to be interviewed on this Bham, AL radio station this morning (they didn’t say what time):

    8:32 am May 1, 2012 Permalink

    Troy Williams postponed his decision via twitter.

  22. lexslamman
    8:32 am May 1, 2012 Permalink


    Thugs is the new ‘n-word’, apparently.

    This team needs some toughness and aggression, and that is why we want Lyons most of all. I hope he brings that attitude with him and teaches it to everyone on the team.

  23. Dtr
    8:39 am May 1, 2012 Permalink

    Troy williams said “it didnt feel right waking up this morning”. Decision postponed “for a while”

  24. Dtr
    8:40 am May 1, 2012 Permalink

    This may not bode well for UNC….

  25. 3 fan
    8:45 am May 1, 2012 Permalink

    UK dream situation is Bennett and Lyons. Lyons only here one year, just another scholly for 2013.

  26. Mike
    8:46 am May 1, 2012 Permalink

    Can we please stop giving Richie Farmer as much publicity as we have been? Why would we want to give attention to patterns of bad behavior?

  27. BPM
    9:05 am May 1, 2012 Permalink

    Welcome back old_school. Glad to know you are ok. I thought for sure you hung yourself after we won the title this year.

  28. bluefan
    9:41 am May 1, 2012 Permalink

    #16, Nothing is “ruining” UK. Did you not see #8? This team was all about character. Good grief. What team were you watching?

    I blame UofL for the scheduling situation with IU. If they would agree to let the game take place int the bucket every other year, the neutral site thing would work out. I truly hope Coach Cal refuses to put a team on the court in Bloomington ever again. Those of you who disagree, Utube the end of that game. Ridiculous.

  29. dacatfan
    9:49 am May 1, 2012 Permalink

    I’m more upset about taking the NC game off the schedule. Our home schedule becomes pretty weak for the fans. I loved the years we were treated to both NC and UL at home.

  30. Old School sux
    10:14 am May 1, 2012 Permalink

    Old_School, your attitude is what would ruin UK. Your such a piece of sh_t.

  31. GetReal
    10:29 am May 1, 2012 Permalink

    As usual, slamman checks in with his agenda. OK, if not a “thug,” then “gangsta” (by his own description). Feel better now? What is the code meaning for “gangsta?” Please enlighten us. That’s what you try to do with every post, right? Show us your vast wealth of knowledge and sophistication?

  32. Top Cat
    1:12 pm May 1, 2012 Permalink

    We don’t need Indiana at all. Or their rude, redneck, a-hole fans that never stop trying to say that about us. They get what they deserved. They are replaceable. To them, we are unreplaceable. Why give IU a commercial when you can expand the Big Blue Nation across the region?