Well that was something wasnt it folks? A little Rutgers over Louisville on a Thursday night. I am not going to say I enjoyed that one…..because I REALLY enjoyed that one. First of all I love Cinderella stories, I think what has happened at Rutgers is truly amazing and……it is good for Louisville fans to finally realize that this isnt the Nebraska team of the mid-90s. All in all, very exciting game and a great kick by Judge Lance Ito at the end.
Now couple of things to straighten up. First, we are (not surprisingly) having a bit of a tough time in making the transition from the ESPN show to making it available for podcast. Our HOPE is to have it for you folks later today, but we cant promise that. Whenever it is ready, Jai Lucas interview and all, it will be up. In the meantime, we will have our regular podcast taping on Sunday and it will be ready as per usual on Monday. So your radio fix is coming. Second, I need to mention one thing about some of the comments I have been reading. While I encourage all the UK fans to write me ([email protected]) and submit requests for stories or things you want the show to do, I do have one request. Before you DEMAND on other sites or this blog that I call this or that recruit or that we limit to the topics that you think are important, remember that this is a site we do for free and for fun. If we want to write about goofiness, we will. If people have suggestions as to why we shouldnt do certain topics (like politics), then that is fine. But please spare me the “keep this blog to sports” demands. If you dont like a story that is not sports, dont read it.
Finally, there have been lots of questions about why I dont have an update about Marshall Moses or Patrick Patterson. I have addressed this a number of times, but I will address it again. I dont have updates on kids when there is nothing to update! Until Marshall gets his test score, there is nothing to say. As of now, he does not have it. Thus there is nothing to say. With Patrick Patterson, there is really little to report. He has mentioned he will wait until Spring, and if that is true, then we are all on hold.
Ok now to some good stuff. Today I spoke with Ramon Harris, the Alaskan sensation who committed to Kentucky and is soon to arrive in Lexington as part of the class of 06. Here was my interview:
You have called a press conference for tonight. What will be the announcement?
I am announcing that I am going to play at Kentucky. It is a dream day for me.
What was the ultimate reason you decided to come to Kentucky?
The bottom line is that there is no better situation for me. I love the team chemistry of the guys there and the way they interact with the coaching staff. When I was there I didnt feel like a recruit, I felt like a part of the team.
When you took your visit, did you enjoy meeting the guys?
Oh yeah, they are all really cool guys. When I was coming in there, the guys all told me that they wanted me to be able to play now and not next year. Perry, Derrick, Jodie and Michael werent worried about playing time but just wanted me to be part of the family. That was really important.
When did you find out you were cleared to play?
I knew what night it was going to be last week and I couldnt wait. I got up at 4 am because I knew it was 8 over there to look. When I saw I was eligible, I just fell down and prayed I was so happy. It was a great moment for me.
What do you think of the area in Kentucky?
You know a lot of people have said its far away, but being in Alaska, I am used to traveling. I have traveled with basketball a lot and I have a lot of family on the East Coast. Plus, the people in Kentucky are a lot like the people in Alaska…..they are friendly to strangers and it is a calm setting. So I feel like I will fit right in.
Some people wonder about basketball in Alaska. What is the talent like up there?
Oh there is a lot of talent. We just dont get exposure like the lower 48 because it is hard for people to get up here. But there are a lot of great players. I am sure basketball up here is better than in a lot of other states that produce more players.
When are you starting with Kentucky and what do you expect to happen?
I will be able to start practicing after final exams and ready to dress for games second semester. I dont know what will happen, but I just want to get started. This is a dream come true for me and I cant wait to get to Kentucky and get started.
It was a great interview with a really nice kid. I am not sure I have ever spoken to a player who was more excited about coming to Kentucky than “Razor” Ramon Harris. Many have been asking me what kind of player Ramon is and I will say this…..I expect good things from him long-term. Everyone I have spoken with who saw him when he was here, RAVED about his ability. He is an Alaska school boy legend and his recruitment has been followed by the folks in that state. Like Trajan Langdon and Carlos Boozer before him, Ramon has the state of Alaska behind him and UK fans will be found in the Great North. The only difference is that Ramon didnt do the shoe camps and without anyone traveling to see his high school games in Alaska, he was unknown. I dont think he will be unknown very much longer. While I dont think he will be a major contributor this year, I think Kentucky got a true sleeper here. And this isnt a Jared Carter or Mike Williams, “we havent seen his best days yet” kind of sleeper. This is a guy that NO ONE KNOWS that is good, simply because of where he lived. That is rare in today’s world. I think Ramon is going to be one of the quietest good gets UK has ever had….and if so, then Kentucky fans will approach the level of excitement about Ramon that he has about Kentucky.
I expect things to happen over the weekend. Rumors abound about a Tracy Smith press conference (he isnt yet qualified). Plus (and very interestingly) Eshaunte Jones has postponed his press conference until next week. I find that decision odd, as he seemed to be a dead lock for Indiana. Since Kentucky is his other choice, is a visit in the works? I am hearing that there may be two visitors this weekend (not Marshall Moses and likely both for 08), so Jones could be part of the crew. Check in through the weekend for what we may find out. Plus we will have game reports from Kentucky-Vanderbilt, which is a BIG game for the program this weekend.
Will have the ESPN show up sometime this weekend and the podcast on Monday. Recruiting news as it happens…..