We all know Sean Combs, but you may not know his name is Sean Combs. During his illustrious career as a rapper/producer/Biggie’s best friend, the man formerly known as
Puff Daddy, P. Diddy, and now known as just “Diddy” has produced a slew of talented artists as the CEO of Bad Boy Records. Puff started Bad Boy Records after being fired from Uptown Records in 1993 and brought up-and-coming rapper Biggie with him as a start up, and 19 years later, is the richest player in the hip hop industry as Forbes has estimated his worth at $550 million. In 2002, he made Fortune Magazine’s “Top 40 entrepreneurs under 40” list, and on Sunday, he will celebrate his 43rd birthday.
Most people who grew up in the ’90’s, when I was a strapping elementary schooler, remember the infamous Bad Boy-Death Row feud centered around Biggie and the East Coast vs. Tupac and the West Coast, a feud that resulted in the controversial shootings of both stars in the prime of their careers. But of all the great things I can say about Diddy’s accomplishments, my absolute 2 favorite memories of Sean Combs will be his performance of “I’ll Be Missing You” alongside Sting and Faith Evans at the 1997 Video Music Awards, which was a beautiful tribute to Biggie following his death. Secondly, his acting as the character of record executive Sergio Roma in the movie “Get Him To The Greek” which I assume to be a spot on portrayal of how he is as an actual record executive.
WARNING: Video #2 is NSFW. Or small, impressionable children.
Now, let’s get to the important news of the day…
In news that shocks almost none of the Big Blue Nation, the football Wildcats dropped their 8th consecutive game on Saturday to fall to 1-9, and a perfect 0-7 in the SEC. Of the most embarrassing losses of Joker Phillips’ tenure at Kentucky, today’s 40-0 drubbing at the hands of…. the Vanderbilt Commodores is right up there next to the WKU loss earlier this year. As Not Jerry Tipton elegantly put it earlier today, Joker Phillips beat John Calipari in the race for 40-0.
If it hadn’t already been decided, Joker Phillips career at Kentucky more than likely completed the digging of it’s own grave on Saturday, and at this point there’s no turning back. What we saw on the field today at Commonwealth was an embarrassment, a 40-point, shutout loss to a team that up until last year was a game on the schedule that UK fans could point to and confidently pronounce “Win”, but now only serves as a brutal reminder of the drop the program has taken in the past couple of seasons. The fans made their displeasure well known today as the announced CWS attendance of 44,092 tickets sold (which is awful in it’s own right) was only dwarfed by the actual number of butts in seats, which judging by multiple reports, hovered around 19,000, the lowest since the stadium expanded in 1999.
Whoever inherits the program next season will have a challenge on their hands. Not only on the field, but getting fans to buy into Kentucky football again. Going into this season, I thought that Kentucky fans still had some hope for the program under Joker, and most fans stood by the team throughout the early part of the year, but it has become clear in the past couple of weeks that any attempt at maintaining fan support has failed miserably. As much as it pains me to say it, Kentucky needs to follow Louisville’s lead in this upcoming coaching search. When Charlie Strong was hired at UofL, even before his first season he had Louisville fans believing that the program was on the come-up, and has delivered in a big way. Getting the backing of the fans should be the first priority of any new coach, especially considering the Wildcats do have a lot of promising young talent gaining valuable experience this season.
For those of you interested in watching sports that Kentucky wins at, UK’s Men’s Soccer team looks to close out the regular season by clinching a bye in the Conference USA Tournament against South Carolina tomorrow afternoon at 1pm. The Soccer Wildcats are 9-7-1 this season, and 4-2-1 in conference play. According to UKAthletics.com, the game tomorrow will be televised by the UK/IMG Network on Fox Sports South and WKYT. If you need another reason to head out to the UK Soccer Complex tomorrow, UK’s 6 Seniors (Gabriel Conelian, Matt Lodge, Jacob Kemper, Charley Pettys, Bryon Vega, and Cameron Wilder) will be honored before the game for Senior Day.
Anthony Davis did not travel with the New Orleans Hornets to his home city of Chicago for a game against Marquis Teague and the Bulls tonight after suffering a concussion in the 2nd quarter of a game against the Utah Jazz on Friday night. In news that will surely not help Duke’s popularity with the Big Blue Nation, the injury came after an inadvertent elbow to the head from teammate and fellow Hornets rookie Austin Rivers. After dropping a cool 21 points and 7 rebounds against the San Antonio Spurs in his NBA debut, Davis had recorded 8 points, 6 rebounds, and 2 blocks against Utah before leaving the game with 4:51 left in the 1st Half.
Obviously, it sucks that of all games to have to miss, Davis would miss his homecoming game in Chicago, considering it is the only scheduled game this season for the Hornets in the city he grew up in, but concussions are nothing to be taken lightly and according to the new NBA CBA, Davis must pass all league-mandated concussion testing before being cleared to play again. New Orleans Head Coach Monty Williams is optimistic that Davis’ injury isn’t a serious one however, and in fact, is upset that the NBA’s new guidelines prevented his star rookie from joining the team in Chicago.
“When you’re dealing with the brain, I guess what’s happening in football has affected everybody,” the Hornets coach said. “You treat everybody like they have on white gloves and pink drawers. It’s getting old. But it’s just the way the league is now.”
“I’m not saying I don’t like it,” Williams said. “We’ve got to protect the players. But I think the players should have more say-so in how they feel. I’m sure I had four or five concussions when I played, and they didn’t bother me. The NBA is doing what’s necessary to protect the players. But this is not the NFL. You don’t get hit in the head that much. So I understand it, but as a coach, I’m a baby about it. I want my guys ready to play.”
At the time of me writing this, the Hornets are still on top of the Bulls at halftime though, 46-44.
Rapper Wale visited the Kentucky Basketball team today and was presented with an honorary jersey, and to give some insight to those of you less acquainted with today’s rap game, this is another very good thing for Kentucky basketball. If you remember correctly, Wale has also shouted out Calipari and Kentucky in his song entitled “Varsity Blues” off his “11-1-11” mix tape last year.
“They hate on Calipari/ I never seen a problem/ They get one season poppin’/ At least he’s being honest”
Calipari in just 3 1/2 short years has made Lexington, KY without question the “IT” place to be in college basketball. Whether it be casually hanging out with Jay-Z at his concerts or the budding relationship between Drake and the Kentucky program, I feel like I don’t need to say it again, but I’m going to. John Vincent Calipari just flat out gets it. The way he markets the program to the die-hard fans in the Commonwealth and to young, budding basketball talents across the nation is remarkable, and he continues to amaze me by exploiting 100% of the resources he has at hand for the positive gain of the program. After his visit today, Wale posted this picture on Instagram with the caption “#UK #coachcal these kids are good”
Honestly, if you we’re going to create a polar opposite for Kentucky’s football team right now, it would be Kentucky’s basketball team.
That’s all for the News and Views tonight, drown your football sorrows in a bottle of John Calipari-edition Maker’s Mark and wait for basketball’s next game on Monday against Transy. I’ll be with you tomorrow morning to get your NFL Sunday started, and I’ll also be out at Anderson Dean Park in Harrodsburg for the first ever matchup between Kentucky and Louisville’s club baseball teams at 2pm. If you’re free come out and watch the “other” Baseball ‘Cats begin another rivalry with our neighbors down I-64. If you still want to keep up with the action from home, follow me on Twitter @WillTottenKSR.
Sleep tight, Big Blue Nation.