Tonight while watching television at the casa del Turkey Hunter, we flipped over to a replay of the 2001 Kentucky-Louisville football game on Wazoo Sports. It was an interesting sight to behold for a number of reasons. First, it was good to see my former radio partner Dave Ragone in all his previous glory. The Battle of the Lefties between him and Jared Lorenzen showcased two gunslingers that were both a bit off of their games that day. Also it was the “Dave, Dave and Dave” show, only without one Dave, in this case our friend Dave Baker. The Neal/Rowe team was brutal to have to listen to throughout. But most the striking thing to see was just how much of a talent upgrade is on the UK football team now compared to back at the beginning of the decade. While that group had some stars (Dwayne Roberson, Lorenzen, Artose Pinner), the depth was virtually nonexistent. The credit for that goes in large part to the efforts of Rich Brooks, who will be part of a Retirement celebration on my birthday in two weeks. The flier is above for the event and if you want to go, you will have to tell me how it is (a little expensive for my blood). But the theory behind the event is one that I can fully get behind. Rich Brooks helped ressurect the football program and he did it in the right way, while making sure to have happy players and ripe tomatoes. We will miss Papa Brooks, even as we get excited for Operation Win with Joker.
Lots to do before Canada, so some quick hitters:
— The UK basketball team finished up their summer practices before the trip today and will be off tomorrow, before leaving on Friday. UK will have a media opportunity on Friday with Calipari and a few selected players, but the next time we hear from them will be in Canada. The Freshman have already taken giant leaps forward and their improvement was not only seen by me in observing the practices, but also by the coaches and staff, all of whom have commented on how much they have picked up in a short time. This summer trip really came along in the perfect year.
— Bowling Green’s Chane Behanan visited campus today and there are rumors of an offer that he may have picked up in person. I havent spoken with Behanan as of yet and there are no confirmed reports, but I do know that he has risen in importance for UK’s recruiting efforts. It is likely we will find out for sure tomorrow if an offer was given, but either way, UK is now officially heavily involved in the Behanan sweepstakes.
— Watch Louie on FX. I took in all seven episodes so far in the last two days. GREAT summer show for an underrated comedian.
— Speaking of television, former Cat footballer John Conner got heavy praise on “Hard Knocks” on HBO. The show that follows an NFL team during Training Camp is one of my personal favorites and this year, the focus is on the New York Jets. Conner got a good 3-4 minutes of camera time tonight as the coaches and players praised him for how hard he hits the Linebackers from his Fullback position. Rex Ryan (the coach who totally won me over after tonight’s show), kept calling him “the kid from Kentucky” and said that he found Conner by looking at tape of a Linebacker playing against Kentucky and seeing Conner hit him so hard that he decided he wanted Conner instead of the LB. “The Terminator” now has national attention and it couldnt happen to a nicer guy. Go get em John!
— Keith Bogans officially signed with the Bulls today and will likely find time in their rotation. Like Nazr Mohammed, Keith is an NBA Cat that we often forget, but he is still kicking it in the league and now has a new 2 year deal.
— Sad to hear that UK Hoops’ player Amber Smith has an injury that she picked up playing pickup basketball this summer. She was a key part of Kentucky’s run last year and was to be counted on heavily in this her Senior season. Here is hoping that she is able to rehab the injury and get back on the court this year.
— Tonight the UK basketball team had a team building night by going to eat at the new Hugh Jass Burgers and seeing “The Other Guys” at the movie theater. For some reason tidbits like this always fascinate me, especially the movies that are selected. For every home game, the UK football team often goes and sees a movie the night before and I am always fascinated by the selections. I havent seen the “Other Guys” but I am a Will Ferrell fan, so I do approve the choice. Terrence Jones tweeted out about the experience and said that he “loved these guys” in reference to his teammates. Got to like the sound of that.
Today at noon, we will announce the second new venture that is going to be taking place around these parts. I have been preparing for our television show (which will being hopefully in October) for the last two months and I cant wait to begin. I am also excited about our other new opportunity and I hope you will stop by around lunch tomorrow to learn more about that as well.
Team Canada leaves on Friday and we have a lot prepared to give you during that excursion. Nothing better than basketball in August…..