The world loves Rondo now. Boston fans love him, the NBA folks love, heck even McLovin is a Rondo fan. UK fans however have always had a strange relationship with Rondo. Because he started as a guy who wanted to go to Louisville and ended up as a player who was always a bit of a malcontent at Kentucky, he never received the constant adoration of a Chuck Hayes, Tayshaun Prince or Ramel Bradley. Speaking just for myself, I wasnt a huge Rondo guy…but then my thoughts changed a season ago. When Rajon showed up for Ramel and Joe’s Senior Day (at his own request mind you), and brought their jerseys out to them, I thought that was a great moment. Ramel later told me how much it meant to him and how Rajon had tried hard after he left to keep up his relationship with them. From then on, he won me over and now I am loving his movement into the top tier of NBA talent. Good for Rondo and good for UK as we watch him become a star before our very eyes.
To the news….
(1): The story of the day is the craziness surrounding John Wall. There was a report today circling the internet (and my live blog) that Rob Gidel was saying that John Wall will be going to UK. I spoke with Rob and that is a bit of misinformation. As of now, there is no Wall press conference scheduled and Gidel is not reporting Wall to UK. Rob made a statement on the radio last week that he thought Wall was a UK lean and Larry Glover repeated that statement today, adding that he would be going to UK. That got put on message boards as Rob reporting that he had picked UK on the radio today, which was not true. As of now, the situation with Wall is the same. People believe he will narrow schools by the weekend, but dont expect a decision as of yet.
(2): The other big story is about Eric Bledsoe and his supposed narrowing of schools to UK and Memphis. Bledsoe’s high school coach told Kentucky Ink that those schools were the last two on his list and that he would be visiting Memphis on Thursday and UK thereafter. The news comes as a bit of a surprise as just two weeks ago, Bledsoe told everyone that Florida was his leader. However now the Gators arent even mentioned, making one wonder if they have stopped recruiting Bledsoe with their pursuit of Wall. Kentucky’s job will be to convince Bledsoe that he can play here with Wall…something he may be open to due to his decision to pick a school before Wall picks one. As I have said all along, if Calipari can get Wall and Bledsoe, he deserves a statue.
(3): John Calipari continues to be a rock star on the travel circuit and tomorrow he gets “in the game” as he goes to California for an EA Commercial shoot. No word yet as to what his role will be, but he will likely be in the game somehow and potentially even on the cover. Crazy stuff from our man.
(4): Finally, Calipari had a luncheon today at the Craft Center with donors and two people there both told me that he talked about a number of subjects. One of his main points was that he recruits givers and not takers. He said that there is a top 10 recruit “begging” to come to Kentucky but that he was a “taker” and thus wasnt interested in him. We all can guess who that is (Lance Stephenson?) but I do like the attitude expressed. That is a good way to look at top players and I hope Calipari keeps consistent with that theme.
More all day, including a look at the Derby work I am doing this weekend (minor celebrities everywhere!). Until then, watch this video where 1500 UK students stormed the Library tonight for a Finals Rave. It is actually really cool to watch and I wish I had been involved.